Quantum Key West Race Week 2016 conditions were heavy as usual but colder and wetter and ended with lightning, thunder and torrential rain. Wind strength during the regatta was generally above 12 knots, while very lumpy with 20+ knots building on the final race. Early on, there were sizable pressure differentials to be grabbed or missed up and down the track making a comeback very possible after a poor start.
Defending 2015 champion Carlo Alberini and the crew of Calvi Networks took the early lead and never lost it with five 1st place finishes, two 2nds after ten races with a worst throw out score of just 6th place, a truly remarkable performance.
Peter Duncan with Team Relative Obscurity took 2nd place overall with 9 finishes better than 6th place, while Tim Healy and Team Helly Hansen ended 3rd just four points behind second place. The Corinthian division was won by Luis Bugallo with crew Marnatura who also placed 7th overall and fifteen places ahead of the next Corinthian in the overall standing.
From Fleet 9, Jud Smith with AFRICA crew Tac Boston, Will Felder and Lindsay Smith improved their position throughout the regatta, but two over early starts and volatile weather kept the race count lower than the scheduled 12 races. Team AFRICA ended with a hard fought 8th overall finish ahead of Brian Keane’s Team Savasana.
Father-son team Clown Car was driven by Fleet 9’s Duncan Swain who also improved its standing during the regatta finishing 31st overall. Fleet 9’s Ted Johnson drove Dave Franzel’s Spring as VitaminJ, who came out strong in the beginning and finished 32nd overall, one place behind
In planning for our future progress, we do realize that big away regattas are more challenging but do make for a more competitive fleet leading up to the Marblehead Worlds in 2018. Next on the calendar is the last of the three Quantum J/70 Winter series on weekend of February 6 – 7, while 44 entries including Fleet 9’s Frank McNamara with Team Chinook and Dave Franzel’ Spring will be racing in the February 26-28 2016 Quantum J/70 Midwinter Championship. Dave Franzel will also be competing in the 2016 St. Pete NOOD on February 12 – 14.