NAWILIWILI — OZone took the high road, Malia took the low road, and in the end, it was Malia squeaking past the finish can by less than a length.
That excitement permeated the final Nawilwili Yacht Club’s Harvest Series race on Thursday as a growing number of spectators took advantage of clear afternoon skies to enjoy the race from the jetty wall.
Malia finished in the top slot in the PHRF Open Class with an adjusted time of 43:07 followed by OZone’s second-place finish that was adjusted to 44:42, hardly the tight finish that took place on the waters of Nawiliwili Harbor. Mapuana finished third in the class at 45:08.
Fourth place went to Papa’au (45:34), followed by Bonjolea (47:46), Malihini (49:17) and Coyote (51:26).
Malia finished the Harvest Series tops in the overall PHRF Open Class, as well, with five points, again, followed by OZone with eight points and Papa’au with 15 points.
Heading out, it was a battle of the skippers as OZone and Malia jockeyed for the lead at the onset. On the return leg from the Ninini Point turnaround, OZone held the lead, but Malia overtook OZone at the harbor entrance.
Heading to the final can, OZone opted for the high road leading right in front of the jetty wall while Malia aimed for the can via the mountain route, a decision that had some spectators mulling the possibility of dead air in the shadow of the mountains.
But Malia eked out a lead at the turn, closely chased by OZone, and at the finish, Malia slipped past the can less than a length ahead of OZone.
In the Club Open Class, Bonjolea topped the list with an adjusted time of 39:06 followed by Papa’au at 40:49, Coyote at 44:24 and Malihini at 47:50.
Bonjolea also topped the overall Club Open Class with 11 points followed by Malihini with 18 points and Coyote with 20 points.
Nawiliwili Yacht Club invites spectators to their special Halloween race that will take place at Nawiliwili Harbor today starting at 5 p.m. The race will be followed by a clubhouse get-together.
- Dennis Fujimoto, photographer and staff writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 253) or firstname.lastname@example.org