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February 13, 2005

LADIES LEARN THE ROPES

Fourteen ladies, with ages covering a handful of decades, set off on the good ship Sailfish on Sunday to become the first yacht crewed exclusively by women in the history of the Mieco Beach Yacht Club.

The ladies not only had to "learn the ropes" under the tutelage of skipper Jaki Leppard, they had to contend with the roughest weather the club has seen this season: White caps hungrily roaming the lagoon, the wind blustering in from the east, and rain-filled squalls passing over with a maddening frequency.

Of the seven boats entered in the race, only five crossed the finish line in front of the Marshall Islands Resort. Shortly before the start, skipper John Jones of 2nd Tri decided that the conditions were too rough for his multihull and he pulled out. Then, on the last leg of the race, the boat predicted to be first around the course ‹ Roxanne, skippered by Tom Petty ‹ blew a jib sheet and then tore the same sail, forcing Petty to abandon the competition.

The remaining five boats plowed on, with the ketch Tauranga, skippered by Marc Mendelson, taking line honors.

At the awards ceremony, race coordinator Ira Hecht, announced that on handicap Tauranga also won the race, with second going to Stella (Terry Forsbrey), third to Sunrise (Dale Finley), fourth to Seal (Cary Evarts), and fifth to Sailfish (Leppard).

The next Mieco Beach Yacht Club event will be the "All-welcome" Tuesday Tales on March 1, when World War II buff Matt Holly will be the guest speaker at the RRE Boknake.

Caption (please click on link to open picture) Jaki Leppard (center, top), skipper of Sailfish, with her all-female crew for last Sunday¹s Mieco Beach Yacht Club Race.

 

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