Will Hanckel continued his domination of the E-Scow class with five straight wins, all by large margins, and Citadel sophomore Evan Minshew turned in the most exciting finish of the day in the conclusion Sunday of the Rockville Regatta on Bohicket Creek.
"This was the best consistent breeze in years at Rockville," Sea Island Yacht Club commodore Paul Andrews told the crowd of sailors gathered on the porch for the awards ceremony.
Gone were the distractions of the huge spectator fleet, which was down to a tenth or less of the size to which it swelled for Saturday's races. Sailing was again the centerpiece of the Rockville Regatta.
Though the power boats were fewer in number, they posed no less a hazard to sailors at times, as Dan Perrin found out in his E Scow right in front of the yacht club dock in Sunday's second race. With his spinnaker up and moving at high speed, Perrin had to turn sharply to windward to avoid a powerboat and in a split second, his 28-foot scow capsized as an audible reaction arose from the spectators at the yacht club.
"Dan had to turn to avoid a collision, and that was it," crew member Justin Walling said. "The capsize caused us to drop to third overall."
The crew righted the boat without assistance and completed the race. Because of their third-place finish, the annual Robert A. Richards Memorial Award went to Perrin's board man, Ben Lee.
In the E Scow class, Miles Martschink was second overall to Hanckel, who won all five of his races during the weekend.
The photo finish of the day belonged to the Sea Island One Design class in Race 3, when Minshew, a Johns Island native, sailed Privateer to a win by a nose over class leader Dave Stanger in Cygnet2. Minshew had a big lead coming back up Bohicket Creek against the tide toward the mark near Green's dock.
"It was really just luck," Minshew said. "Going out on the weather leg, I wasn't clear where the next mark was. I had gotten forced over to the east side of the creek not where I really wanted to be - and had to ask Jay Bowen on Bohicket II where the next mark was. It turned out that I was accidentally in the best position to get to it."
Stanger went 1-1-1-1-2 to win the SIOD class, followed by Stan LaRoche on Marcheta, who went 6-2-2-2-5, and third place went to Jay Bowen on Bohicket II. Island Spirit, Dog House, Privateer, and Undine V all competed in the class.
The Dr. Daniel Ellis Trophy was presented by Ellis' great-granddaughter, Anne Swinton Ellis Fitzgerald, to the Sea Island One Design with the best overall record for the 2008 season. This year's award went to Dave Stanger on Cygnet2. Stanger thanked his crewmen, Dan Olivier and Will Cabell, and also Van Smith, whose support has kept the fleet going.
"This is the first season I've had the same crew for the entire summer," Stanger said. "It really makes a difference."
E SCOW: 1. Will Hanckel: 1-1-1-1-1-5; 2. Miles Martschink: 2-DNF-2-5-2-20; Dan Perrin 3-2-6-3-6-20
SIOD: 1. Dave Stanger, Cygnet2: 1-1-1-1-2-6; Stan LaRoche, Marcheta: 6-2-2-2-5-17
Jay Bowen, Bohicket II: 2-4-3-6-4-19;
Y-FLYER: 1. Don Hill: 1-1-2-2-3-9. John Parker: 5-2-1-4-2-14; 3. Ewing Williams: 2-5-3-3-4-17
SNIPE: 1. Lewis Seabrook: 1-1-2-1-2-7; 2. Mike Palazzo: 2-2-1-2-1-8; 2; Andrew Sadowski: 3-3-3-3-3-15