J/105 Youth Team Rocks Ida Lewis Distance Race

The weather started out gloomy, then got downright nasty for the 13th edition of the Ida Lewis Distance Race, which started Friday, August 18 off Fort Adams State Park in Newport, RI. A forecast calling for storms to pass over the race course during the night convinced seven of the original 40 entrants to drop out prior to the start for six classes. Of the remaining 33 teams, an additional 10 were forced to retire due to damaged equipment or other problems incurred during multiple squalls that left memorable impressions and their calling cards of driving rain and winds gusting 40+ knots. Perhaps most impressive was the performance by Young American Yacht Club’s Junior Big Boat Team aboard the J/105 Young American, which persevered with three others teams in Spinnaker B to finish the race and take the top trophy for its first-place finish as well as the Arent H. Kits van Heyningen Trophy for the race’s Youth Challenge. "We knew the forecast wasn’t going to be easy on us, but we didn’t think we’d see 50 knots," said Constantyn van der Voort (Rye, NY), who helped steer and ran things in the cockpit. "That was a little scary, because we had three sails up... the storm jib, the #3 jib on the furler and the mainsail." His crewmate Nick Hein (Westport, CT), who was on bow, said that the team of eight is preparing for the next Newport to Bermuda Race. "This was the most open ocean sailing we’ve ever done as a team," he said. For complete results, visit https://yachtscoring.com/event_results_cumulative.cfm?eID=4193.

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