Snipe USA

October 03
18:05 2008

2008 SNIPE U.S. TEAM WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP QUALIFIER

FLORIDA YACHT CLUB, JACKSONVILLE, FL

SEPTEMBER 27-28, 2008

Augie Diaz and Morgan Commette captured the World Championship Qualifier over local sailor Hal Gilreath and Clayton Dixon. Doug and Melanie Broeker, of Miami, finished up in third. Augie was prequalified for the Worlds, so Hal and Doug clinched the two remaining spots on the U.S. team.

A high quality fleet, reminiscent of a Nationals or North Americans came to Jacksonville over a beautiful weekend to contest the Worlds Team Qualifier. The 2009 Worlds are scheduled for San Diego, and as such the competition for these spots has been very high. The fleet of World, Western Hemisphere, National and North American Champions; along with numerous former and current All-Americans, Olympians and Pan Game representatives battled it out on the St Johns River.

Pre-regatta activities started with Super Crew and World Renowned Opti Coach running practice races on Friday afternoon. We sailed several short courses and also gained some practice starting.
The starting practice came in handy on Saturday. After a delay on shore, the fleet went out on the St Johns to sail in strong current and light winds. These conditions proved challenging as the fleet went through several recalls and postponements prior to getting off on a good start.

Steve Stewart and Gus Wirth, San Diego, led Brian Bissel and David Hughes at the first mark. Steve and Gus held onto first w/ the positions behind them changing constantly in the oscillating breeze. Augie and Morgan clawed back through the fleet along w/ Chris and Antoinette Klotz from St Pete. By the end Augie nipped Steve and Gus, followed by the Klotz’s and then Hal and Clayton.

The first race proved staying in the pressure and searching for the next shift were imperative. The second race was similar to the first. This time Ernesto Rodriguez and new super crew, Lisa, led from start to finish. Lee Griffith and Andrea Nilsen followed around in second. Convergence was the word at the leeward mark as the places 2-12 came together in a bunch. Up the second beat Doug and Melanie Broeker, and Hal and Clayton broke out from the pack to round the weather mark second and third. Ernesto and Lisa held on up the last beat to win. Brian Bissel and David Hughes went up the left side and squeezed ahead of Hal and Clayton for second. Augie and Morgan sailed steadily throughout the race moving from 8th to 4th just edging out Doug and Melanie.

Sunset was imminent, so the fleet headed to shore. On shore Florida Yacht Club served up happy hour from its porch overlooking the St Johns. A beautiful evening ensued w/ a great Italian buffet. FYC is always an outstanding host and this night was no exception. Several sailors then took boats down the river to visit some local hot spots and enjoy the Jacksonville nightlife.

Sunday dawned sunny, warm, and clear. Unfortunately there was not a breath of air. After waiting the RC cancelled further racing. Despite limited sailing the sailors enjoyed a great weekend in Jacksonville. The U.S. Worlds team is now set for the Worlds in San Diego in 2009. FYC will host its annual St Johns Tea Party next Spring. Please come and join us.

Full Results:
Place Skipper Crew Hometown Race 1 Race 2 Total
1 Augie Diaz Morgan Commette Miami 0.75 4 4.75
2 Hal Gilreath Clayton Dixon Jacksonville 4 3 7
3 Doug Broeker Melanie Miami 5 5 10
4 Chris Klotz Antoinette St Pete 3 10 13
5 Brian Bissell David Hughes Newport Beach 12 2 14
6 Peter Commette Megan Place Ft Lauderdale 8 6 14
7 Steve Stewart Gus Wirth San Diego 2 16 18
8 Eric Reinke Merrill Varn Annapolis 7 15 22
9 Lee Griffith Andrea Nilson Surf City 16 7 23
10 Ernesto Rodriguez Lisa Miami 23 0.75 23.75
11 Luke Lawrence Enrique Quintero Miami 13 11 24
12 Gonzalo Crivello Tim King St Pete 11 13 24
13 Doug Hart San Diego 10 14 24
14 Brian Kalimar Fred Moffat Boston 17 8 25
15 David Tillson John Fretwell San Diego 6 20 26
16 Steve Suddath Kelly Suddath Jacksonville 15 12 27
17 Gonzo Diaz Adrienne K Miami 9 19 28
18 Stephen Irgans Monica St Louis 21 9 30
19 Raul Rios Puerto Rico 14 21 35
20 Henry Filter Nancy Gilreath Annapolis 20 17 37
21 Andy Klein Barb Evans Boston 19 18 37
22 Mike Palazzo Drew Charleston 23 23 46
23 Tom Henderson Shannon Drew Atlanta 27 22 49
24 Andy Culver Drew Culver Jacksonville DNC DNC 50

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