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, 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.
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.