Two dozen sailboats crossed the starting line on Saturday morning for the All-Lake Regatta, which featured a variety of boat classes and sailors of all ages, with the top seven overall finishers each competing in a different kind of sailboat. The event, postponed a week, was the final part of a a celebration of the Lake Hopatcong Yacht Club building's centennial.
Scott Callahan of Far Hills, sailing a Barnegat Bay Sneakbox with his wife, Joann, finished first in the event, followed by George Malanga and Kyra Topor (sailing a 420), John Deermount, J.B. Barret, and Daria Sullivan (sailing a Thistle), Mike Gruber (sailing an A-Cat), Fred and Hannah Eagles (sailing a Star), Brian Kitchin and Lloyd Kitchin, Sophie Wiss, Thomas Hussey, and Brielle Malanga (sailing an E-Scow), and Doug Kitchin (sailing a Laser). Rounding out the top ten were Andrew Dill sailing a Thistle into eighth place (with crew Mark Miller, Patrick Dill, and Michael Flinn); Dan Edwards sailing a Thistle in ninth (with crew Peter and Elizabeth Edwards); and Fred and Ellie Steinbaum sailing a Hobie-16 in tenth.
Gruber was actually the first to cross the finish line on Saturday. The nature of the Portsmouth rating system, however, is based on time and awarding ratings to different classes of boats. Therefore, the top finishers didn't cross the finish in the order of their ranking, but their standings were based on each boat's time and class rating. All competitors received award trophies for Saturday's race: replica medals of old-time races at the yacht club, found by Lake Hopatcong Historical Museum president Marty Kane.
The race itself was unusual for the Lake Hopatcong Yacht Club beyond just the use of the rating system (boats usually only race against those within their class). The start was held off of the judge's stand at the club dock, and sailors first rounded old mark number 1, which is located on the other side of Bertrand Island, in King Cove. They then sailed a zig-zag course up the lake and returned to finish at the yacht club dock. Unusual for an LHYC race, but not completely: in decades past, all races began at the club, regardless of wind direction, and rather than typical windward-leeward race courses, races used a medley of marks all around the lake—including the one behind Bertand Island.
"We want to make this a fitting tribute to the races of the past," said Lloyd Kitchin, who helped coordinate the event, during the skipper's meeting. "So we're going to make this as crazy as possible."
Anyone who watched the event—which featured a spectrum of different types of sailboats (including a group of teenage participants on a Santana wearing pirate hats and singing), a variety of parent-child teams, and all kinds of wind conditions—could agree that it looked a little crazy... and a lot of fun.
Scott and Joann Callahan sailing a Barnegat Bay Sneakbox on Lake Hopatcong Saturday, winning the All-Lake Regatta.
Competitors, including Fred Eagles and his daughter Hannah, prepared for the start off the Lake Hopatcong Yacht Club dock.
The start featured two dozen boats in 12 different classes.
The race was delayed a week due to thunderstorms in the forecast on July 10. The wind on Saturday was a relatively steady 5 to 10 knots, with sunny skies all day.
Third-generation Lake Hopatcong Yacht Club sailor Andrew Dill with crew Michael Flinn, Patrick Flinn, and Mark Miller.
Mike Gruber, sailing an A-Cat, was the first to cross the finish line, and with adjusted time rating finished in forth overall.
Michelle Eagles—a lifelong Lake Hopatcong sailor—skippered a Laser with her daughter, Olivia, as crew.
Karl Hefele sailed a Santana with a group of friends—all in pirate hats with water guns blazing.
Brian Kitchin, sailing with Brielle Malanga, Thomas Hussey, Lloyd Kitchin, and Sophie Wiss, sailed an E-Scow and finished sixth overall.
Brother duos Tim and Dan Flinn and Steve and Tim McMillan sailed an E-Scow in Saturday's race.
John Deermount and crew J.B. Barret and Daria Sullivan finished third overall in a Thistle, a boat developed by Lake Hopatcong sailor Sandy Douglass.
Angus Dickinson and Meghan Murphy—the youngest team on the water—sailed a 420. The two participate in sailing lessons out of the Lake Hopatcong Yacht Club during the week.
Wendy Walters, sailing with her husband, Bob, competed in a Hobie for Saturday's race.
Fred and Ellie Steinbaum finished tenth overall, sailing a Hobie-16 in Saturday's race.
Emma Restrick, sailing with Augustina Dickinson, competed in a 420 (foreground) and Jeremy Marshall sailed a Precision 185 (background) on Saturday.
Tim Ripley, of Randolph, competed in a 2.4 meter, finishing in 15th overall—but his position may improve when the proper Portsmouth rating is established and applied to his finish time.