Latest US News


  • Viper Sailor Patrick Mauro Summits Mt. Everest! July 26, 2017 Patrick Mauro thrilled his Larchmont Yacht Club shipmates and other Viper sailors this past May as many of us followed in real time (largely thanks to Facebook) his expedition to Himalayas to tackle the world’s tallest mountain. We uninitiated were totally unaware of the preparation and training that must go into such a venture, and how long the actual ascent and descent of the mountain would take…and the obstacles that had to be overcome along the way. Pat was asked to share his thoughts on elite-level mountaineering as it relates to his having grown up as a sailor. Pat’s commentary: Among the varied amalgam of interests, relationships, and experiences in my life, water has been a constant motif. I grew up on the shore of a lagoon in Hilton Head, SC, where alligators, cranes, and magnolia trees provided the backdrop for my ... ...read more
  • Jeff Grange, Jon Bell, and Jennifer Wesiman win Santa Barbara 2017 Skiff Festival May 30, 2017 Santa Barbara YC Skiff-Fest – May 20-21. 2017 Submitted by Geoff Fargo, Western Regional VP SBYC and the local Viper fleet hosted the SoCal Vipers for its annual May rendezvous and this year the great breeze on both days meant this event delivered everything you could want for the perfect weekend of racing.  Seven races over the 2 days with winds mostly in the 10 to 15 knot range provided some great racing. Congratulations to Jeff Grange, with Jon Bell and Jen Weisman as crew, who sailed well all weekend for a well-earned win. Here are some NOT fake facts about SBYC and Skiff-Fest (well almost all are NOT fake facts) 1.    You have to be named Jeff or Geoff or (Mc)Geoff to own a Viper at SBYC (yes – 3 of 3) 2.    Geoff F will always order a big enough keg ... ...read more
  • Viper Sailor Pat Mauro Climbing Mt. Everest…right NOW! May 10, 2017   Viper 640 Sailor, Pat Mauro, Climbing Mt. Everest…NOW!    And you can join the expedition.  In 2010, Patrick Mauro joined Larchmont Yacht Club to sail Vanguard 15s and subsequently became part of the Viper 640 fleet at the Club. But Pat may not have been fully satisfied by racing sportboats, and he soon had a foiling Moth zooming around the harbor like, well, a moth. His thirst for adventure, only matched by his generous philanthropic efforts with City Harvest, are still expanding. On his bucket list are two more, non-sailing adventures — to become an astronaut (really!) and to climb Mt. Everest. As you read this, Pat is in the process of climbing Everest. It is understandable that considerable physical and mental conditioning is required before attacking the tallest mountain in the world, and Pat has paid his dues climbing many “lesser” mountains ... ...read more
  • Tech Committee Approves Test Of Bow Roller Adaptations May 10, 2017 May 10, 2017 At the Worlds last November in Bermuda, many boats had to remove tubes or pipes attached to their headstays that can help launching and retrieving the spinnaker. While functional in reducing the loads on the spinnaker being pulled out of the launcher by the tack line or retrieved under the foot of the jib, the Class Rules did not permit these devices. The TC is working on a rule change proposal on this issue for ratification at the October 2017 North Americans and is seeking ideas and input. Recognizing that these inexpensive adaptations may allow owners to sail their Viper more easily, and there is interest in identifying which devices work best, the TC and International Board have approved under Rule 10.13 “testing” of such devices on all Vipers through the end of September.  Rule 10.13 does not allow ... ...read more
  • Tim Carter, Nigel Brownett, and Jennifer Weisman Win 2017 Helly Hansen San Diego NOOD March 24, 2017 March 16-18, 2017 Reflections by Tim Carter Aaah, Saint Patrick’s weekend, the promise of Hennessey’s, green beer, good breeze, and the flat water of San Diego’s south bay was calling us back. Is it that time again?? On the way from Long Beach to San Diego, Nigel Brownett and I recalled that the first time we raced Vipers against other Vipers was 10 years ago at this event. My how the experiences and the miles have added up. The forecast did not have a lot of hope, 7-9 kts and cool overcast days were what the speculators said, and they were close. We ended up with a bit over 10 kts. and the skies burned off by noon mostly, although we had a fog line appear on the south side of the course each day that had a bit more pressure in it. Nine ... ...read more
  • Geoff Ewenson, Skip Dieball, and Paul Abdullah win EFG Viper Pan-American Championship and Bacardi Miami Sailing Week March 12, 2017 Sailed from March 9-11 as part of Bacardi Miami Sailing Week Sponsored by EFG, the EFG Viper Pan-American Championship is the culmination of a year’s worth of qualifying regattas in Australia, Europe, and North America. Depending upon where you finish in your top qualifier, skippers carry over into BMSW “qualifying points” that are added to their Miami final score. Those not sailing any qualifiers carry 9 points into Miami but Annapolis’ Ewenson’s dominant performance over the three days gave him 30 total points, enough margin to beat out Sarnia, OT’s Bill and Joanne Abbott sailing with Lee Shuckerow on Lee’s Jackpot who carried over only two points after the EFG Winter Cup for a total of 37 points. In third for the Pan-Ams was the Santa Barbara, CA’s Geoff Fargo, Jeff Grange, and Spencer Steffen who carried in only a single point (thanks ... ...read more
  • 2017 Miami Viper Scorch — Two races wrapped around a meal March 8, 2017 On Tuesday, March 7, the Viper fleet made its way to Key Biscayne’s Boater’s Grill in No Name Harbor for our annual Cuban luncheon. Six crews chose the traditional method of arriving at No Name Harbor…sailing…while others opted to drive. In all, 35 folks enjoyed the bright blue waters of the lagoon as they celebrated Viperdom. The “first” race, started off the Coconut Grove channel by Scorch sponsor Brad Boston of Doyle Boston Sailmakers, was a loon port tack fetch in 10-14 knots of wind. A couple of short tacks at the end put you at the finish…the Boater’s Grill. Four points of note: Cole Constantineau sheered a rudder pintel just after the start and luckily Brad was in his rhib to return him safely to port…and carry them over to NNH. A clerical error the night before the Scorch, rum-induced obviously, led ... ...read more
  • Lawrence Crispin Repeats as EFG Winter Cup Champ March 8, 2017 March 6, 2017 Congratulations to Lawrence and Luka Crispin and Hector Cisneros for wining the EFG Winter Cup for the second consecutive year. After getting blown out yesterday (lots of puffs into the 30s) and a two hour delay today two races were run on Biscayne Bay. Ireland’s Antony O’Leary took the first race but had his mainsail a tad too far out when a puff hit and he lost his rig. Deb and Craig Wilusz took second and Nick Amendola finished in third. Thanks to PRO Sharon Bourke from Coral Reef Yacht Club and her team for getting off the races. It was “sporty” on the Bay and, after a number of swimming episodes, the last race time approached and in went the fleet. Photos soon! Results ...read more
  • Jeff Grange Buckled Down to Win Arizona Yacht Club’s 2017 Leukemia Cup Regatta February 22, 2017 February 19, 2017 Rain and strong wind mark Arizona Yacht Club’s 2017 Leukemia Cup-Birthday Regatta sailed March 17-19: Friday: Gorgeous. Saturday: Not so much. Sunday: Better, but who needs cold and rainy? Obviously the weather gods hadn’t read the Phoenix Chamber of Commerce’s tourism brochure that called for balmy, warm, and sunny days with light to moderate winds. As the California coast was getting blasted with weather, Arizona experienced the outcroppings of those western storms with winds as high as 20 knots at times and rain. Did someone mentioned that it rained…and was cold? Whatever! It was still a great weekend of Viper racing with good competition, fun shore side activities, and the traditional great Viper sailor camaraderie. When it was over, Jeff Grange, racing Venom with his wife Caroline and fellow Santa Barbara sailor Mike Cooney, had mowed down the Viper competition: his ... ...read more
  • World Sailing Class Status Confirmed for International Viper 640 February 21, 2017 In November 2016, World Sailing approved the International Viper 640 Class’s application to become a recognized World Sailing class. The International Viper 640 Class Association, at the same time, adopted an international constitution and signed a contract with World Sailing confirming the Class’s international status. World Sailing has accredited Zeke Horowitz, Ian Coleman, and Brendan Healey, all from Annapolis, MD, as Viper 640 World Champions, following their win last November at the first World Championships in Bermuda. Commenting on the completion of this process, Viper 640 Class International Chairman Justin Scott said, “We have fleets in three continents and a circuit of destination regattas over the next three years that span spectacular locations across North America, Australia and Europe. The Viper 640 is now truly an international one-design class.” Jason Smithwick, World Sailing’s Director of Technical and Offshore, added, “The Viper ... ...read more
  • Zeke Horowitz wins 2016-2017 Sarasota Viper 640 Winter Series February 6, 2017   February 5, 2017 Zeke Horowitz (Annapolis, MD), sailing with Ian Coleman (Annapolis, MD) and Chris Klevan (Westerly, RI) won February’s final segment of the Sarasota Sailing Squadron’s Viper 640 Winter Series and, with that win, captured the Series title, too. The Sarasota Viper 640 Winter Series is a three-part event raced during weekends in December, January, and February. Twenty six Vipers were raci ng this weekend and a total of 30 competed overall. Sarasota Sailing Squadron’s PRO, Ron Pletsch, ran six races in challenging conditions as the shore and sea breezes battled each other. The conditions over the two days saw shifting winds with races run in winds from five to fifteen knots. It was a nail biter for the weekend’s results as Horowitz’s win in the final heat put him ahead of Peter Beardsley (Brooklyn, NY), Jay Rhame (New York, NY), and ... ...read more
  • Jay Rhame and Peter Beardsley Win Sarasota Viper 640 Series #2 January 9, 2017 January 8, 2017 Fun In The Sun, But Not Super Warm! The January Sarasota Sailing Squadron’s Viper 640 Winter Series stop (January 7-8) got off to a slow start as teams fought their way south through the Winter Storm Warnings and snow that reached as far south as the Gulf Coast. The Viper 640 team of Great Scott from Larchmont (NY) Yacht Club (Jay Rhame, Peter & Rachel Beardsley and Parker Mitchell) put up a solid score line of 1,2,1 to win the event followed by two host Sarasota Sailing Squadron teams (wearing every bit of cold weather gear they own): Sidewinder, driven by Travis Yates with a 3,1,3, and Coming In Hot driven by Michelle Lee with a 2,5,2. This was Michelle’s first trip to the podium as skipper. The Buccaneer Yacht Club’s GYA team on Danger Noodle skippered by Mobile, AL’s ... ...read more
  • Boston, Shuckerow, and Lawrence Hit The Jackpot at Sarasota #1 December 19, 2016 An epic weekend of sailing kicked off the Sarasota Viper Winter Series. While the rest of the country endured an Arctic blast Brad Boston, Lee Shuckerow and Luke Lawrence topped a fortunate fleet of 23 Viper teams that sailed 8 races in perfect Viper breeze with temps in the 80’s! Zeke Horowitz, Brendan Healey and Ian Coleman finished up second with local team Travis Yates (Event Chair extraordinaire), Mike Meighan and Dave Hillmyer taking the last spot on the podium. Great close sailing happened for the entire fleet with old friends and some great new faces joining the Viper fleet. Four teams came down from the GYA and Sarasota looks forward to seeing more Gulf Coast teams down at the GYA’s southernmost member club in the near future. Some color commentary on the weekend: 23 teams raced, not all sailed all 8 races Support/crash/media boats ... ...read more
  • Updated NoR for Sarasota Viper Winter Series December 1, 2016 Travis Yates, yes…the same Travis Yates who was the only one to go sailing on Thursday, November 17 in Bermuda Harbor (and had the ride of his lifetime)…has updated the NoR for the Sarasota Sailing Squadron’s Winter Viper 640 Series. This is a truly great event and everyone should make an effort to sail in at least one of the three weekends. 2016-2017-sarasota-viper-640-notice-of-series-v1-1 ...read more