The Hampton Annual was a great time this weekend. The HOD class fielded 8 boats, and won the Blackbeard Trophy for largest class, besting the 505s, Sonars, and Vipers.
It was a very light air affair, but highly entertaining with many great class “firsts” to build on the strong momentum from the Wolcott regatta the preceding weekend.
First, it was Will Chapman’s first regatta, where he sailed with Leigh and Dave, and did all of the driving on the more challenging up-wind legs, and let the old folks in the boat handle the more boring down-wind legs.
It was also Blake Goodwin’s first regatta in the Hampton sailing with his dad in #625. Blake was one the few to get out on the Trapeze, and definitely had the technique down.
It was also the first regatta for the newest HOD #730, which had been rigged by Jackson Montague, with help from Eddie Williams, and some from his brother Lat (who has been recruited away from sailing with his dad somehow). #730 was sailed well, looked great and sported many rigging innovations from the next generation of HOD sailors, like a carbon mast ram, and carbon whisker pole, and all of the fanciest Brummel lock spectra splices Jackson learned from the Olympic sailors in Kiel two weeks ago. Jackson was also inspired to start a splicing business for summer job, and found his first customer in Dr. Stokes.
It was the second regatta for Chip Lollar sailing #716 with Bill Parker on the wire. #716 seemed to get faster as the weekend went on, almost winning the last race on Sunday. My boys knew that Chip and Bill were the “Real-deal” because they showed up with a kite-board rig in the back of their truck in case the breeze was “really on.”
Will Roberts had 597 out with Sarah Wolcott crewing, and the boat looked great in a new black paint scheme. Sarah clarified that both she and her farther would be getting their own boats in the near future if I have the story straight.
Gordy Stokes showed up for Sunday, and once again made us all look weak by sailing out to the course solo with the trapeze harness on, but picked up an ace crew from the committee boat at the very last minute before the first race. Well played! Gordy was only topped by Kerri Stokes, who was on-hand in her motorboat to pass out very beers to the sailors as they finished the last race.
I tried to give my 14 and 15 year olds some “space” at the regatta and let them figure stuff out on their own, and that seemed to work pretty well until the trip back to Urbanna. I did not bother to supervise the packing up of the new Hampton, or it’s attachment to mom’s car. Patty and the boys were supposed to be following me back up the road, but I somehow lost them between HYC and Hampton University. Right before I got on the Interstate, Little Lat called and told me the boat had become disconnected from mom’s SUV on the Hampton River Bridge, and I should come back to help. Mom was too furious to call me. I thought to myself, that’s impossible! A few nervous minutes later I returned to find the 730 hanging by the safety chains behind Patty’s SUV with a big Dominion Power truck in front, and another behind with Hazard flashers on. It turns out Patty’s car had a 2” trailer ball, and the Hampton uses 1 7/8”. Nobody realized this, because nobody had bothered to clamp down the trailer hitch lever before they left HYC. I had the right size ball in my car, and the guys from Dominion helpfully connected it with two giant monkey wrenches off of the work truck. They were truly good Samaritans, because Patty got more than one dirty look for parking a sailboat on the bridge. Hampton sailing is always an Adventure!
We hope to see all of you at the next Adventure! (Which is the Corsica River Regatta at the end of July, a great camping venue!)