Rocky Mountain Shootout at Cherry Creek, May 18-19

Just like Rocky Balboa and Apollo Creed in the movie “Rocky”, blows were exchanged between skippers in the U20 fleet to the point where it almost seemed ridiculous. Surely, no human being can take that kind of beating. After two days of pounding each other into oblivion on the water, we all felt like we had just finished 15 rounds with Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr. (aka, Muhammad Ali)

Although the forecast had called for decent winds, we sat on the lake for 2 hours and 45 minutes before the first race started on Saturday. Fortunately, the wind held long enough to knock-out 3 races.

Marty May on Red Line landed the first punch with a win in round 1. During round 1, Tom Downing got knocked down with a blow to the spinnaker and broke his tack line cleat. He had to sit in the corner mending wounds for the rest of the day.

After getting outscored in the first round, Jim Ulatowski returned the Frazier by winning the second round. Marty was rewarded for landing a low-blow by splitting with the fleet in round 3. He caught a new breeze on the far right side that allowed him to punch out ahead of the rest of the U20’s.

On Sunday morning, we waited around for the breeze to build and finally, round 4 began. Once again Marty demonstrated his fighting skill and beat the rest of to the finish line. Just like on Saturday, Ulatowski took the next round, then, in a last ditch effort at a knock-out, Underdog hooked a win in the 6th and final round.

And the winner by unanimous decision… Jim Ulatowski on Juiced! with a score of 8 points. Marty took second with 9 points and Underdog grabbed 3rd place with 10 points.

For some reason, this regatta seemed to require more physical and mental effort than any in recent memory. There was never a chance to relax and enjoy a nice lead, the other boats were always nearby, challenging. Keep your hands up and COVER, or else! I think that this demanded extra concentration and effort from everyone. As demanding as it was for those of us with full crews, it had to be even more difficult for Brad Lawson on Redbeard and Marty May on Red Line; both sailed with only two on board and I’m sure that they got a thorough work out.

Coming up on June 1-2 is the Carter Open.

Fair breezes,
Cliff Begnaud
Underdog #126