NAWILIWILI — Just 32 seconds separated the first and second place finishers Thursday afternoon.
With breezes blowing in the 6- to 12-knot range from the East-Northeast, there was a lot of room for jockeying and strategizing tack lines and “Fast Company” took advantage of that to squeak across the finish line just 32 seconds elapsed over “OZone” as the Nawiliwili Yacht Club opened its Junior Invitational Series, Race No. 1.
With traffic in the six-boat fleet playing against the warning horns, “Fast Company,” an Olson 30, was in the thick of traffic off the starting line.
But skipper Jim Saylor mixed things up and “Fast Company” pulled ahead heading for the first turn.
First to spinnaker, “Fast Company” was hotly pursued by “OZone” through most of the race, and at one point between the second and third legs, “OZone” managed to get ahead at the breakwater.
But Thursday’s race belonged to “Fast Company” which crossed the line at 53:27 after navigating the 4.4-mile course. “OZone” followed at 53:59.
With the PHRF correction, “Fast Company’s” finish was adjusted to 53:32 with “OZone” coming in at 54:02.
“Lelele,” a Wells 30 that won the overall Rum Series, was in fourth place off the start, but consistent sailing and persistence paid off as she crossed at 56:20 (56:10 PHRF) for third place.
“Papa‘au,” the Express 27 that topped the Club class in the Rum Series, held third place through most of the first leg of the race, before finishing fourth at 1:00:39 (58:04 PHRF) followed by “Speedy,” the third Olson 30 in the race, at 1:00:57 (1:01:03 PHRF).
“Malihini,” a 35-foot catamaran, returned to the waters following a maintenance hiatus to round out the field on a 59:59 elapsed sail only to be relegated behind “Speedy” on the PHRF correction of 1:01:30.
The “Fast Company” win comes on the heels of the Memorial Day Hanalei Race where “Fast Company” was dispatched to second place by “OZone” who not only gained a win in the Monohulls, but the Overall Around-the-Island Race as well for the perpetual trophy in that event.
The Thursday race marks the kickoff for a variety of events for the NYC starting with the club’s annual Father’s Day Fishing contest which will be held on June 15 at the Nawiliwili Small Boat Harbor.
“This is a growing event,” Sharon Gibson, the NYC scorekeeper said. “It gets bigger every year, and we have a lot of community businesses who contribute prizes so all the keiki can have something.”
Anglers between ages 3 to 13 are reminded to bring their own fishing gear which includes a pole and bait.
Registration for this event starts at 10:30 a.m. and fishing starts at 11 a.m. and runs until 1 p.m.
A $5 registration fee includes a hot dog and soda for the angler.nst Kaua‘i teams.