Sailing Summary

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“SODA” Regatta, Feb 11-12, Balboa Yacht Club (Governor Cup 21, junior match racing invitational).

SODA stands for the “SoCal Youth Match Racing – Open Development Acts.”  This is a new event that focuses on developing junior sailors in the discipline of match racing, and the SODA event uses the same Gov Cup 21-foot foot sloops used in BYC’s Governor’s Cup match race each July.

Unlike fleet racing, match races are generally held in a “Round Robin” format with each team pairing off against each one of their competitors in a series of short, quick one-on-one races.  After a complete round robin series, top finishers move on to an elimination series with losing teams successively knocked out.

The America’s Cup is the best known match race sailing event that uses this format, but match racing has long been known internationally for its high level of cutting edge racing competition.  The Congressional Cup in Long Beach and BYC’s Governors Cup are the two other major So Cal events that use this match racing format.

Where fleet racing is relatively unrestrictive in the numbers of competitors and boats that come out, top level match racing requires identical boats and on-the-water umpiring – and due to the costs and logistics required to throw this type of match racing event, the “SODA” regattas are among the relatively few match racing events in the USA that focus on junior racers.

After the first Round Robin at the SODA event, the regatta was led by a young team of BYC juniors: Christopher Killian, Jack Martin, Harrison Vandervort, Andrew Luttrell.  They were followed by Brandon Folkman sailing with BYC’s Ryan Davidson and Riley Gibbs, while Michael Madigan, Jimmy Madigan and Jack Thompson rounded out the top three.  Results flip/flopped in the finals, with the Folkman/Davidson/Gibbs coming out on top ahead of the Killian team (for Indy readers who follow top developing local youth sailors, you might want to keep track of some of these names).

The second part of the SODA series will be held May 5-6 at King Harbor Yacht Club in Redondo Beach, and the final SODA event will be held June 2-3 at San Diego Yacht Club.

Bogart Series #2 and #3 (Avalon and Return), Feb. 11-12, Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club (PHRF)

Seth Hall’s J124, Marisol, dominated BCYC’s Bogart Series #2 and #3, finishing first on handicap in last weekend’s Bogart Series races over to Avalon and again on their return Sunday.  In addition to taking honors in both races, Hall’s Marisol moves up to second place overall in fleet in the Bogart series behind Jeff Burch’s Hot Ticket.

Steady breezes all weekend saw the majority of the fleet making an upwind crossing to Avalon in just under 5 hours.  Many of the boats managed to make the return trip Sunday in well under four hours (in the case of the fleet’s scratch boat Dare, Bob Kettenhofen and crew crossed the channel in a quick 3 hours and 12 minutes).

Top finishers in “B” fleet was Rob Herzberg’s Baltic 51 on the way to Avalon, while John Szalay’s Peterson 34, Pussycat, won the return leg from Avalon.  In “C” fleet, Bill Apps Catalina 30 “Obsession” was the sole boat that made the trip both ways, but even without any direct competition in her own class, Obsession’s handicap times showed that she sailed every bit as well as many of the larger class A and B boats.

Upcoming Events

Feb. 17-18, NHYC/SDYC – Islands Race – 125 mile offshore Race around Catalina, San Clemente Islands.

Feb. 18-19, 83rd Annual SCYRA Midwinter Championships – Various classes, locations; for more information go to

Feb. 25-26, Golden Bear Regatta, UC Berkley – High School Invitational

March 3-4 W.D. Schock Memorial Regatta – One-design “Schock” classes; Harbor 20, Lido 14, Santana 20.


– John Drayton

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