The Long Harbour Classic is the premier event of the SPOG season and the unofficial annual championship. Held sometime near the end of the summer, this is a regatta series of short races in the confines of Long Harbour around the crab traps and other obstacles (with apologies to BC Ferries). The winner claims the Kerr Trophy, rededicated in 2009, previously given for Best Canadian Bred Boston (which we believe is a type of hog).
The 2017 Classic – Steve White Knocks Hart off the Pedestal
Salt Spring Island was blessed with 2 days of near perfect sailing weather for the 2017 Long Harbour Classic. Sunshine, consistent wind around 6 knots , and enough action to make things interesting. With a grueling 8 races over two days, the Old Guys and Gals were hitting the Advil and enjoying the breaks between races.
There were 2 Old Guys in Training out on the water, and they were the class of the fleet winning most of the races. In a sign of things to come, Brad Woodward and Fraser Buck displayed excellent boat skills and speed; clearly leaning everything from their old men. But as we all know, no prizes for wannabe Old Guys.
Hart Buck duelled with Brad and his son on Saturday and was sitting pretty after handicaps, despite not sailing the right course (the Race Committee may have had it in for him). But Hart had to catch the tide home on Sunday making for an interesting battle for honours. Steve White had a good Saturday after a slow start, and hung on on Sunday to beat Greg Slakov 3 points and Brian Woodward by 4 and take the Kerr Trophy.
Notable performances were put in by Bill Cote and his Lightning crew who won the Lightning Class of 1 and managed to finish in 7th overall despite twice picking up a hood ornament in the form of Alan Sturgess and ramming the breakwater; Greg Roberts showing remarkable perseverence in sticking out all 8 races while trying to figure out laser sailing; and Alan Sturges for surviving two blatant attempts to add him to the crew of the Lightning.
Notable performances were put in by Greg Johnston who spend more time in the water that on it, Randy Vogel who managed to break a spar while simply sailing around pre-start (but recovered well to com in tied for 6th), Jeremy Baxter who lead the next generation of SPOGgers, and David Sutcliffe who gathered the most style points from the judges with a spectacular nose dive from the high side of his capsizing boat.
In the battle for Season Champion, Steve White and Brian Woodward are tied with 36 points, 6 ahead of Tim Slaney.
A Big Thank You to the Ornery Measurer, Frank, Sheila, and others on the Race Committee, Robert Shoore and his daughter on the crash boat, and Kevin for polishing up the Kerr Trophy. And Special Thanks to Kim Ballantyne, Gaylean, Pam, Sheila, Janet and a host of others for yet another great SPOG Commodore’s Dinner.