It was a day for schooners at the annual Pat West gaff-rigged and schooner race on Saturday. Twelve boats competed, and when it was all over, three big schooners took the top prizes.
Jim Lobdell of the well-known 42-foot Alden schooner Malabar II was the winner overall.
Second place went to the 65-foot Island-built Juno, captained by Scott DiBasio, and third place went to the 50-foot Perception, captained by Jamie Weisman.
Mr. Lobdell is also a race official, but there was no conflict as Hugh Schwarz, a longtime race organizer, presided over the race start at 11 a.m. while the captain competed. “He sailed a really good race,” Mr. Schwarz said of Mr. Lobdell.
While quite a few smaller gaff-rigged sloops competed, the race, which is handicapped, nevertheless favored bigger boats due to wind conditions and other factors.
Winds were east-northeast at 10 to 15 knots, and seas crossing Nantucket Sound were pretty big. “For nearly three days we had a strong northeasterly wind,” Mr. Schwarz said. “We were at the end of a hurricane, so there was a lot of surf. We also had a strong easterly tide.”
The race was shortened to 10.1 miles. The boats raced to a buoy off West Chop, then went to the western end of Squash Meadow and then to the buoy off Edgartown and back home.
The first boat to cross the finish line was Juno at 1:38 p.m. The last boat to finish the race came in at 3:40 p.m.
There is great fellowship among the sailors in this autumn race.
“It is important we have a community of people who like to get together,” Mr. Schwarz said. “They do get together out there and have a good time.”
— Mark Alan Lovewell