News Feature

Penobscot Bay
Originally published in Castine Patriot, August 10, 2017 and Island Ad-Vantages, August 10, 2017 and The Weekly Packet, August 10, 2017
Fleet of 34 classic wooden yachts race out of Castine Harbor in annual regatta

Lark races the Reach

Lark, a 47-foot Brooklin Boat Yard-built transom boat, raced the Spirit of Tradition class in all three regattas. Above, captain Patrick Wilmerding of Blue Hill and crew maneuver the Reach in the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta.

Photo by Butler Smythe Order prints of selected PBP photos.

by Anne Berleant

Under clear skies and a brisk southwest breeze, the Castine Classic on Thursday, August 3, ushered in three days of sailing in Penobscot Bay that culminated with a fleet of 94 classic wooden yachts racing down the Reach in the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta on August 5. The Camden-to-Brooklin race was the second feeder race, held on August 4.

In Castine, 36 boats raced in four classes, starting from the harbor bell on a 19.6 nautical mile course ending off Curtis Island in Camden.

Sailing in the Classic B class, Leaf won its division and also took home the Ames Cup for the fastest time in the Classic A, B and C classes. The 38-foot, Luders-designed 1944 Leaf, captained by Chris Bouzaid of Cushing, also won its class, Vintage A, in the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta, under a brisk wind and, at times, misting fog.

The Eggemoggin Reach Regatta sets a 16 nautical mile course down Eggemoggin Reach, turning northward at Halibut Rocks to sail a straight line up Jericho Bay and finish off at Naskeag Point.

The fleet raced in eight divisions, with staggered start times, and ended with the Stephens Waring-designed and Brooklin Boat Yard-built 68-foot Isobel, captained by Richard Schotte of Camden, as marking the fastest elapsed time. Isobel also won the Spirit of Tradition class in the Castine Classic, and posted the fastest elapsed time in the Camden Classic in a fleet of 52 yachts racing 28 nautical miles from Camden to Brooklin.

Siren, captained by Peter Cassidy of Rochester, Mass., was awarded the Sparkman & Stephens award and the Joel White Award for first “plank on frame” corrected time.

For the captains, crew, owners and friends of the 100-odd classic wooden boats, many locally owned, captained and built, racing is only part of the event. A celebration of Aage Nielsen yachts in Castine, a send-off breakfast in Camden and a barbecue dinner, followed by dancing and awards at the WoodenBoat School to wrap up the three regatta days, are all in the spirit of tradition.

Full results and awards for the ERR and Camden Classic are online at erregatta.com. Castine Classic awards and results will be online at castineclassic.com

Aage Nielsen yacht races Penobscot Bay

Saphaedra, a 51-foot Nielsen ketch built in 1965 and sailed by a female crew, starts in the Classic A class in the Castine Classic, above, its best finish in all three regattas.

Photo courtesy of Kathy Mansfield
Otter races Penobscot Bay

Otter, a 41-foot Concordia 41, captained by Robert Keefer of Rockport, raced all three regattas and took third in the Classic B class of the Castine Classic, above.

Photo courtesy of Kathy Mansfield
Marilee

Marilee, a 58-foot Herreshoff-designed New York 40 built in 1926 and captained by George Pilgrim, of Newport, R.I., raced to a top finish in the Gaff and Schooner class of the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta on August 5.

Photo by Butler Smythe
Vela

Captain Havilah Hawkins of Sedgwick and the crew of Vela, a 51-foot gaff schooner built by Hawkins in 1996, wait their start in the Gaff & Schooner class of the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta. Vela is used by Hawkins each summer for Windward Passage, providing sailing adventures to Maine teens, with little or no experience, aboard a traditional vessel.

Photo by Butler Smythe
Gaff & Schooner Class

At right, Vela, a 1996, 51-foot, gaff sloop built and captained by Havilah Hawkins of Sedgwick, maneuvers in the Gaff & Schooner class in the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta, placing third by the race’s end.

Photo by Butler Smythe
Lark races the Reach

Lark, a 47-foot Brooklin Boat Yard-built transom boat, raced the Spirit of Tradition class in all three regattas. Above, captain Patrick Wilmerding of Blue Hill and crew maneuver the Reach in the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta.

Photo by Butler Smythe
A Classic start

The fleet lines up to start the Classic A class in the race from Castine to Camden.

Photo courtesy of Kathy Mansfield
Leaf wins Castine Classic Ames Cup

Leaf, a 38-foot, 1944 Luders, captained by Chris Bouzaid of Cushing, won the Ames Cup at the Castine Classic, above, and the Vintage A class in the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta.

Photo courtesy of Kathy Mansfield