While most other sailors were inside the clubhouse waiting for the wind to pick up, David Usher had moseyed down to the fleet of boats Sunday afternoon to get his ready for racing.
The weather delayed startup of Day 2 of the Hobcaw Yacht Club 56th Annual Open Regatta. With a slight chuckle, Usher said that wasn’t the case just 24 hours earlier when the winds were blowing strong and the currents followed suit.
“It was wicked,” said the Wilmington, N.C., resident. “The currents were crazy, and that makes it more fun and competitive.”
A Savannah native, Usher has been sailing since before he can remember. And each year, he and his two kids travel to various sailing events. The Hobcaw Regatta is one of their favorites.
“They’re just really hospitable here,” he added.
While Usher was embracing the strong winds, other sailors were using them to gain more experience.
Woods Gamble, a 10-year-old resident of James Island, has been competing for two years. Out at the event with his dad, Rob, Woods said he’s learning a lot dealing with the different weather patterns.
“It can be hard,” he said. “The current was hard to tame, but it was a good experience.”
The learning curve didn’t just come with the Wando River waters.
Charleston resident Walter Blessing, 14, said he enjoys the competitiveness, which is why he recently chose to sail a Laser, an upgrade from the O’Pen Bic he used to sail.
The Bics are tailored for younger sailors, but Walter decided he wanted to turn it up a notch.
“I’ve sailed Lasers a couple times now, and it’s definitely different,” he said. “But I’m learning and having fun with it. It’s just about trying to get better."
All told, 131 boats hit the water for the Hobcaw Regatta over the weekend. That ranks the 56th annual event as the largest one in modern history, said Skip Sawin, the regatta chairman.
That’s not including the overall attendance, which keeps growing thanks to the large swimming pool, music and food. All of those factors are what makes the Hobcaw race special, said Sawin.
“We just enjoy doing this every year with our members and friends. I couldn’t ask for more,” he said.
Hobcaw Regatta Results
1. William TeBrake; 2. Ben Usher; 3. Escher Kucier
1. Mason Fisher; 2. Petra Humphrey; 3. Thomas Weil
Open Bic Under 13
1. Hudson Monts; 2. Molly Aiken Loring; 3. Jane Herbert
Open Bic Over 13
1. Ashton Loring; 2. Kaitlyn Bagnoni; 3. Alex Bagnoni
1. Stanley Hassinger; 2. Eli Putnam; 3. William Gilden
1. Scott Hansen; 2. Jacob Fisker-Andersen; 3. Will Weinbecker
1. Francis Humprey
1. Ann Sheridan; 2. David Usher; 3. John Fragakis
1. Elaine Parshall; 2. Will Sloger; 3. Carter Cameron
1. Harrison Parker; 2. Larry Thomas; 3. Thomas Mazzeo
1. Robert Silcox; 2. Tavia Smith; 3. Owen Mckenzie
1. Stan LaRoche; 2. Jessica Koenig; 3. Peter Durst
1. Frickie Martschink; 2. Rutledge Young; 3. Lewis Hay