t has been another exciting year for the Chester IOD fleet. Many good things have happened and a number of our boats have changed hands. First, Ted Murphy of Halifax bought Steve Moody’s “O2”, promptly renamed it “Restless” and painted it peppermint-green. Next, Peter Wickwire bought “Squall” from me and is now enjoying continued success on the water. Not to be outdone, Shawn Mulrooney completed the work on the fiberglass boat he purchased last year and did a complete refit. He painted it a gorgeous metallic blue-grey and named it “Piper”. Our fleet now consists of 11 active boats with an extra one (“Zephyr”) that will be used as part of a new-build that Shawn Mulrooney is working on. This will give us 12 boats and will form the basis for Chester hosting the IOD Championship in 2020.
One of the interesting things in analyzing our fleet is the diversity it represents. Of the 10 owners in the Chester fleet 5 are local owners and 5 are summer residents thus giving us a balance and inclusiveness to the fleet. Interestingly, 3 of our owners are under 30 years of age — we call them ‘the young guns’ — while 3 others are 45 years old or younger. The remaining 4 of us are … let’s say … over 45 years of age! We certainly hope this trend of new and younger owners continues. We believe that what is attracting the younger generation is not only the beauty of the boats, the program we have for the summer both on and off the water but also the great competition, camaraderie and ability for participants to travel to other countries for IOD regattas. A case in point is that Ted Murphy competed hard and won the right to represent Chester in the IOD North Americans in North East Harbour.
There have been some terrific regattas for the IOD in Nova Scotia this summer. The first major one was the Indian Point Regatta. Three days of tough racing and a fun family raft-up that is now a tradition. The two-day One Design racing at this regatta saw 9 of our IODs participate. This is the most we have ever had on the line. There was terrific weather and great racing. Ted Murphy prevailed over Peter Wickwire, with Shawn Mulrooney in third position on the podium.
Next up was the Classics Regatta in Chester where we got to race around the buoys against larger old classics on PHRF handicap system. Five of our IODs competed but we were not in the medals for this regatta.
The middle of August is our Chester Race Week which counts heavily in determining who will represent Chester at the IOD Championship. Again, there were 9 boats participating on a windward/leeward one-design course. After 3 days’ racing Peter Wickwire lead the standings by 1 point over Ted Murphy and 3 points over Rick Thompson. Alas, racing on the last day was abandoned due to lack of wind! Such is the fickleness of the wind gods. Kin Yellott, our current WCA treasurer, chartered “Bella” for the week and Scott Thomas from Maine sailed Shawn Mulrooney’s “Piper”. One of the highlights for the IOD fleet was the IOD fleet party which had Gosling’s Rum sponsoring the event. With over 80 people attending it was a great success.
On the international competition front, Peter Wickwire once again represented the Chester fleet in the Bermuda International Race Week in May of this year. He prevailed and was victorious. He has now won the event 3 times in a row! Ted Murphy, who travelled to Maine for the IOD North Americans, accounted himself very well finishing third in the fleet. It is one of our goals to get more of our fleet members to the many great regattas that the Class puts on in North America and in Europe.
There are still two more regattas for the Chester IOD fleet in late August and mid-September. We look forward to 2017 when a new IOD will join our Chester fleet once construction is completed by South Shore Marine. Please visit our website Chesteriodfleet.ca to see pictures and articles of the above mentioned regattas. My thanks to all our members and supporters in Chester and Indian Point for another successful season here in Nova Scotia.
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