Ninety-three wooden sailboats raced through Jericho Bay on Saturday, August 4, in a 16 nautical mile course down Eggemoggin Reach, stretching from Torrey Island out to Halibut Rocks off Marshall Island. There, competitors tack their vessels round the ledges and head back on a mostly parallel course to finish by Naskeag Point.
Any early morning fog had lifted by the 11 a.m. starting time, but light winds caused a one hour delay.
“It was a smart, wise call on the part of the race committee,” said event organizer Lucia Michaud. After that, “the winds held pretty much for everyone.”
Sailing yachts qualified in eight classes, with starting times staggered at 10-minute intervals. Michaud reported no bottlenecks during the race.
Local boats, Swallow, skippered by Jeff Becton of Deer Isle and Lark, skippered by Patrick Wilmerding of Blue Hill took first place in the Spirit of Tradition A and B classes respectively
The Eggemoggin Reach Regatta is considered by many to be the crown jewel of the three races, with the Castine and Camden Classics “feeding” into it on the two previous days. It drew the greatest number of boats, and unlike the earlier races, was not hampered by light wind conditions.
The race “went terrific,” said Michaud. “It’s the spirit of the race” to draw together volunteers to hold the event and its post-race celebrations.
The first ERR began 27 years ago, started by Steve White and Frank Hull of Brooklin Boatyard. On Saturday, the day finished as in years past, with an awards ceremony, barbeque and dancing at WoodenBoat Publications headquarters on Naskeag Point in Brooklin.