Featured Story

A rousing season’s end for the Menantic Yacht Club

This past Sunday brought to a close another successful season for the Menantic Yacht Club (MYC).

Twenty sailors participated weekly on average, and a total of 46 different sailors participated throughout the season. Seven women qualified for the season, a record. One sailor, Rachel Beardsley, sailed in every race. Two sailors, Linda Gibbs and Tom McMahon, sailed in all but one race, counting their time on Race Committee. Ellen Leonforte and Denise Fenchel missed only a couple.

It was a fantastic day on the water for all 24 sailors participating in the 10th series of Sunfish races this past Sunday. The sun was shining, the competition was tough and the camaraderie was unbeatable, as usual.

The wind blew moderately, between 7 and 10 knots, but a number of sailors flipped in the gusty wind. There was one crash between Tom and Joe Sullivan, which happened when Tom’s traveler broke as he jibed around a mark. Until that point, Tom was toward the front of the pack, having a great race. Fortunately, Joe and Tom both came out of it unscathed.

The competition was tough as usual, and the final placements for the season were not decided until Sunday’s racing was over. Lee Montes went into Sunday’s races with a lead over Peter Beardsley, but needed four more races to qualify, which he completed on Sunday, resulting in Lee placing first overall for the season.

Since Peter was solidly in second place overall, he felt he didn’t need to defend that position and decided to skip the MYC races on Sunday and race his Viper instead. Priorities, priorities, priorities.

Unfortunately, Charlie Modica missed sailing on Sunday because he was injured while flying a model airplane, requiring stitches. Despite not sailing, Charlie placed fourth overall to his brother John’s fifth, because John had an unlucky day. Charlie, really, after 50 years of flying those models, you let one get the better of you?

Since he couldn’t sail, Charlie ran Race Committee for the second straight week, along with Betsy Colby, Judy Hole and Marian Thomsen. They ran six official races, mixing up the courses. In true MYC fashion, after the last official race, everyone wanted a fun race to end the season, so the Race Committee ran a quick windward leeward finish.

Thank you, for doing a superb job. And thank you, Charlie, for lending the fleet your 20-foot inflatable for chase boat duty this summer, and driving it half way around the Island every week to West Neck Harbor.

Linda Gibbs captained the chase boat along with Susie Masse on Sunday. They had an extremely busy afternoon. Even though the wind was relatively mild, it was gusty and as challenging as if it were a real blow. Steve Shepstone flipped twice. Melissa Shepstone not only flipped, but turtled and needed help from the chase boat. Jonathan Brush, Ruth Hakanson and Stuart Homer also flipped. And of course, Jodi Sisley kept up her perfect record. Thank you, all.

The MYC wants to send a huge thank you to Billy Sulahian for captaining the chase boat this season. Although family duties called on Sunday, Billy’s consistently reliable and dedicated service to the MYC over many seasons deserves special recognition.

Linda and Tom hosted a short after-race awards ceremony, with masks and social distancing required. The MYC’s very own Al Michaels, Peter Beardsley, MC’d live on Facebook so that Commodore and Sallie Bethge and others could watch remotely. Peter and Rachel presented the following perpetual trophies:

Commodore’s trophy: Commodore Pete and Sallie Bethge

Corinthian trophy: Paul Zinger

Windels trophy for winner of the first race of the season: Paul Zinger

Burty trophy for the winner of the very last race: Lee Montes

Season First Place trophy: Lee Montes

Season Second Place trophy: Peter Beardsley

Up the West Neck Creek Race trophy: Peter Beardsley

Most Enthusiastic trophy: Kyle Hvidsten             

Youth trophy: Will Lehr

LYCE trophy: Ellen Leonforte

MYCE trophy: Charlie Modica

Most Improved trophy: Will Lehr

Best Ladies Sailing trophy: Linda Gibbs

Good Shipmate trophy: Betsy Colby

True Grit trophy: Jodi Sisley

Linda also received a trophy made by Dave Olsen for “outstanding leadership during the 2020 Covid Crisis”.

Several sailors come from off-Island to sail with the club, Ruth Hakanson, Jim Kohler, Joe Sullivan and Lee Montes. Lee, the official New York Sunfish Class Representative, loves our venue and thinks we’re one of the top Sunfish sailing clubs because of our camaraderie, volunteerism and quality of sailing.

With the absence of Commodore Pete this past summer, the MYC extends many thanks to the following club members who stepped up and did an incredible job of running the season smoothly: co-captains Linda and Tom, Rachel and Peter, George Zinger and Bill Martens. A special thanks to Peter and Dave Olsen for managing the fleet of loaners, and to Peter and Chris Lane for giving sailing clinics, which really helped to improve the quality of sailing.

Although the COVID crisis prevented me from participating in person, thanks to Tom, Linda, Rachel, Peter, George and Charlie, I was able to enjoy the races vicariously through Zoom and Facebook live. Hopefully, by next season, new national leadership will have gotten control of the COVID crisis, and we will be able to get back to normal sailing. See you on the water. Results for the day:

 Name                  PTS    Place

Lee Montes                          12               1

Paul Zinger                            18              2

Griffin Sisk                            27              3

Eric Langendal                     32              4

John Hultquist                     33              5

Melissa Shepstone             41               6

Steve Shepstone                48             7

John Modica                        58              8

Denise Fenchel  65              9

Susanne Hulme 69             10

Jeff Anderson                      71               11

Joe Sullivan                           72              12

Will Lehr                                75              13

Rachel Beardsley                80             14

Ruth Hakanson  84             15

Bill Martens                          90             16

Tom  McMahon                  91              17

Ellen Leonforte 95              18

Dave Olsen                           103            19

Jonathan Brush  116             20

Kyle Hvidsten                      126            21

Jodi Sisley                             129            22

Stu Homer                            139            23

Mary Vetri                             148            24

Season Results

(50% of races were needed to qualify)

1.           Lee Montes             2.03

2.          Peter Bearsdley      2.8758

3.          Paul Zinger               3.9782

4.          Charlie Modica       6.074

5.          John Modica           6.500

6.          George Zinger        8.590

7.          Joe Sullivan              9.0909

8.          Linda Gibbs             9.2308

9.          Denise Fenchel       9.400

10.        Rachel Beardsley   10.3725

11.          Suzanne Hulme      11.7575

12.         Bill Martens             11.7586

13.         Will Lehr                   13.7380

14.         Tom McMahon      14.4000

15.         Ellen Leonforte      14.4000

16.         Dave Olsen              16.0000

17.         Jonathan Brush       16.5182

18.         Kyle Hvidaten         19.3500

19.         Mary Vetri               19.4634

20.             Jodi Sisley                 19.9000