NAWILIWILI — OZone increased its lead in the Nawiliwili Yacht Club Gene Wells Memorial Series with a solid win Thursday.
The trade winds returned and blew a steady 10 to 15 knots out of the north northeast. The three leaders, OZone, Fast Company, and Bonjolea II, played it to their maximum advantage.
The battle resulted in tight competition as Bonjolea II clearly had the lead entering the No. 2 red can turnaround, but had to put on the brakes when Fast Company cut tight to the inside, taking the lead heading to the Ninini Point Lighthouse turnaround.
Coming in from the outside leg, OZone had managed to eek out the lead spot, and taking the tight turn near the seawall, continued to build the lead after wrestling Fast Company on the inland leg.
The wind entered the picture, falling off and forcing the NYC Race Committee to shorten the race as the sun dipped close to the horizon.
The shortened course worked in OZone’s favor as the Olson 30 slipped across the finish line on a one hour, and 54 seconds elapsed sail, correcting to 1:01:00 PHRF for top overall honors.
Fast Company followed on a 1:02:03 elapsed sail, correcting to 1:02:09 PHRF for runner-up honors followed by Papaau, crossing sixth overall on a 1:05:04 elapsed sail, correcting to 1:02:17 PHRF for third place, a mere eight ticks back of Fast Company.
Trinity, an F-28 trimaran, crossed on a 1:03:31 elapsed sail, third overall and 18 seconds ahead of Bonjolea II, correcting to to 1:12:18 PHRF for sixth in the class.
She also corrected to 55:19 Club for top honors in that division.
Second place honors in Club class went to Weatherly, crossing on a 1:04:37 elapsed, corrected to 1:04:43 PHRF for fourth, and 59:34 Club for runner-up honors in the class.
Bonjolea II crossed on a 1:03:49 elapsed sail, corrected to 1:08:00 PHRF and 1:05:19 Club for third place in the Club class.
Speedy, with Joanne Woltmon getting her first experience as crew after being a spectator last week, rounded out the fleet, crossing on a 1:20:31 elapsed sail and correcting to 1:20:38 PHRF and 1:11:58 Club.
With just two races remaining in the series, and the NYC racing calendar, Ozone controls the lead.
The public is invited to view the competition Thursday when the NYC Race Committee raises the first flag of Race No. 6 at 5 p.m.