Skip to main content

Hardesty Wins Etchells Worlds

New world champions were crowned in the Etchells class over the weekend, with the completion of racing on Lake Michigan out of Chicago Yacht Club. Here is a report from the race organizers:Bill Hardesty, Erik Shampain, Steve Hunt, and Jennifer Wilson of San Diego, California take their first Etchells World Championship title after ending the regatta with a strong 12th place finish
  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

New world champions were crowned in the Etchells class over the weekend, with the completion of racing on Lake Michigan out of Chicago Yacht Club. Here is a report from the race organizers:

Bill Hardesty, Erik Shampain, Steve Hunt, and Jennifer Wilson of San Diego, California take their first Etchells World Championship title after ending the regatta with a strong 12th place finish in race 6.

After dropping a 39 point finish from their score, the team secures first place overall with a total of 30 points and an 8-point margin. Hardesty was the pre-event favorite having won both the Midwinters East and West.


Chris Busch, Chad Hough, Chuck Sinks [his son Tyler is racing in the Youth Nationals through Tuesday on San Francisco Bay], and Peter Burton, also of San Diego, came in second with 38 points followed by Jud Smith, Henry Frazer, and James Porter with 41. After protest and redress hearings at the end of today, Peter Duncan moved from 16th to tie Beadsworth/Dwyer at 56 points for fourth. Duncan won with tie breaker with his 2nd place win in today’s race.

The sixth and final race of the regatta was run on Saturday in beautiful conditions with 10-20 knot westerly winds, waves, and warm sunny weather. Bush, Hough, Sinks, and Burton took the lead on the first downwind leg, and from there they proceeded to walk away from the fleet on every leg and capture first place by a substantial margin.

"We went right on the first beat while most of our competitors went left," Busch explained. "We were pretty behind after a bad start at the right end of the line, but we found better velocity and some good shifts on our side and we were able to work our way back through the fleet. Once you’re out front, it’s a lot easier to stay there. It's the races where you’re deep and have to fight your way back that really make the difference.

Busch, Hough, Sinks, and Burton take the role of the stealthy stars of the regatta. After a disappointing 49th finish on the first day, the team moved to 8th with a 2nd and a 4th on the second day of racing. They continued their climb up the score board with respectable finishes in races 4 and 5 which brought them up to 6th and then into the top three. With a decisive win today, the San Diego team ultimately captured 2nd place by three points from Smith, Frazer, and Porter.

Winners Hardesty, Shampain, Hunt and Wilson sailed an impressive regatta. "Our two firsts on the second day really helped. We’ve been training hard, and it paid off." Hardesty said. With the exclusion of their 39 point drop race, the team never scored below 13th in the racing this week. On how the team managed to stay consistent in the tricky conditions Hardesty explained, "We sailed conservatively. Once we figured out what was working for us, we stuck with that strategy."

Remarkably, with the exception of one drop race apiece, Hardesty, Busch, and Smith all posted top 20 finishes in the five races counting toward their final score. It is undoubtedly this impressive consistency, despite challenging conditions, that places these three boats on the Etchells Worlds podium this year.

The next Etchells World Championship will be held in March 2009 on Port Philip Bay, Melbourne with the host club being Royal Brighton Yacht Club. For a complete list of the final results log on to chicagoyachtclub.org.

Posted June 28 by KL

Related

00-LEAD-210918_11HR_AZIMUT48HRS_AMO_00411

11th Hour Racing Team's Green Mission

“I’ll admit, it’s still hard to watch the boat leave the dock sometimes,” says former Volvo Ocean Race sailor Mark Towill. Since meeting during a Transpac campaign over 15 years ago, he and his teammate Charlie Enright have sailed thousands of miles together aboard two Volvo ...read more

D61_JKELAGOPIAN-3

Boat Review: Dufour 61

Dufour, long one of France’s most well-respected builders, has been producing sailboats in La Rochelle since the dawn of fiberglass boatbuilding. Having recently merged with another La Rochelle-based builder, Fountaine Pajot, Dufour has now joined other European mass-production ...read more

m138123_14_00_210609_TORE02_SE_2152_2504-2048x

The Ocean Race to be “Climate Positive”

The 2023 Ocean Race intends to be one of the world’s first climate positive sporting events, offsetting more greenhouse gasses than are produced. The two-fold effort means cutting emissions by 75 percent and investing in ocean projects that sequester carbon and restore ocean ...read more

01-LEAD-Ancients-3-2048x

Cruising Lake Superior

Almost anywhere a sailor drops the hook someone else has been there before. We are hardly ever the first. That remote Maine harbor without a soul in sight: there’s a lobster trap. The south coast of Newfoundland: the crumbling remains of a fisherman’s cabin lie hidden among the ...read more

01-LEAD-Tablet-Holder-4

Fabricating a Tablet Holder

During the pandemic, I was stuck aboard Guiding Light, a Lagoon 410, in St. Lucia for over a month. During that time, as I worked on the boat, I started by doing a spring cleaning in my spares locker and finding some parts and material that I forgot I had. As soon as I saw them, ...read more

00-LEAD-AdobeStock_486335954

A Catamaran for a New Era

Anacortes, Washington, is an unassuming sea-salty town near the San Juan Islands of Puget Sound, and the Betts Boats yard is easy for a passerby to miss. But within Betts’ facilities, the dawn of an era in Pacific Northwest production boatbuilding could be breaking with the ...read more

X5_plus_slide-01

Boat Review: Xquisite X5 Plus

The Xquisite X5 Plus is a major update of the boat that SAIL awarded Best Large Multihull and Best Systems titles in 2017. The changes were not just cosmetic, but genuine improvements to an already fine boat, making it lighter, faster and less dependent on fuel. The builder’s ...read more

01-LEAD-AdobeStock_40632434

Cruising: Offshore Prep Talk

When I began preparing Minx, my 1987 Pearson 39-2, for extended Caribbean cruising, I had to balance my champagne wish list against my beer budget. Every buck spent on the boat before leaving would be one less frosty can of Carib down in the islands. On the other hand, I had to ...read more