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Fleet Captain Year End Message

To Fleet 13 Members,

What a great weekend we had!  Starting with the Kris Kringle Regatta on Saturday morning - it looked for a while as if it might be a light wind day, but sure enough, around noon the westerly filled in and then it was game on! Congratulation to Andy La Dow and crew Jake La Dow and Max Hutchinson on MoFo (USA 985) for a flawless regatta – winning with three bullets – done skillfully by owning the pin end at the start of each race, heading left for the channel with an outgoing tide and extending thereafter to win, wire to wire.  Top Corinthian honors for the day go to Frederic Lafitte and family on Hustle and Flow (USA 1281) for second place overall, after parachuting in from Seattle for the weekend. Third place went to Ben Mitchell as guest skipper on Elizabeth (USA 1000) with crew members Brad Rodi and Patrick Powell. Fourth place went to skipper JJ Fetter and crew on Sputnik (USA 1044) while fifth place went to skipper Mike Terry and crew on Blue Fin (USA 1263).

Later that evening… we were all treated to a great time at the festively decorated home of Bruce and Erin Nelson for the annual Fleet 13 Holiday Awards Party. The party was well attended with over 100 guests. The DJ was very cool, the food was tasty, the refreshments were chilled and the ice luge was flowing all evening. On behalf of the extended Fleet 13 family and friends, I want to express our sincere thanks and deep gratitude to Erin and Bruce for hosting such a gracious party at their home. Thanks also go to Ben Mitchell for providing levity and comic relief as our Master of Ceremonies for the trophy presentation, and to Andy La Dow for introducing Sally Ault and the new Barry Ault Top Corinthian Perpetual Trophy, to be designed and crafted by Sally.

Fleet 13 has two concurrent season-long series which include the Season Championship and Faulconer Cup.  This year’s winner of both series and a repeat winner from last year, was team leader Geoff Davis on Lola (USA 1066) with co-skippers Chuck Sinks and Tyler Sinks and crew Wally Eaton.  Geoff has demonstrated the value of a team approach in running an Etchells campaign and has put together a group of co-skippers and crew members that keep USA 1066 consistently at the front of the fleet.  

We also had a repeat winner for 2nd place for both the Season Championship and Faulconer Cup. This was won again by Tom Carruthers on Elizabeth (USA 1411) with crew members Chris Busch and Andrew (“Dog”) Palfrey.  Tom and his team have also been very active campaigning nationally and recently brought home the 2014 Etchells North American Championship.

3rd place for the Faulconer Cup was won by skipper Marvin Beckmann and crew members Steve Hunt, Stephanie Roble and Danielle Septembre on The Martian (USA 1232).  Marvin and crew are the 2013 Etchells World Champions, the 2015 National Champions and came in fifth overall this past November in the 2015 Etchells World Championship in Hong Kong.  One of the advantages of sailing in the San Diego Etchells fleet is that you often get to compete against the best in the world. 

3rd place for the Season Championship was won by Charlie Mann on Jack (USA 1138).  Charlie also took home the Top Corinthian Trophy and Most Improved Trophy. He and his crack all-amateur team had a great year.  Charlie’s crew, J.C. Langlois, was awarded the Tom Seitz Trophy, which is awarded each year by a vote of registered skippers for the most valuable crewmember in the fleet. In his remarks Charlie mentioned that he and JC have been sailing together for over 15 years and gratefully acknowledged JC’s contribution to USA 1138’s success.

We are looking forward to a great year of Etchells racing in 2016, starting with the One Design Weekends in January (16th and 17th ) and February (20th and 21st) as warm ups, to be closely followed by the West Coast Spring Series beginning in March. Check out the WCSS details at for more information.

Wishing you all a safe and Happy Holiday Season,

Xavier Sheid

Fleet Captain

Etchells Fleet 13