11 Jul Cormac Murphy Winning the Right Races at Oakcliff
July 10, 2022 (OYSTER BAY, NEW YORK) – Cormac Murphy with his young team from The Waterfront Center won all of his races to win Oakcliff’s July Grade 4 Regatta for the second year running. The rest of the fleet needed Dave Perry’s three P’s: “Patience, Perseverance and Persistence” to gain their positions. Ironically that is the Dave Perry saying that is on boat #1 which he raced today to claim the final position on the podium in a nailbiter of a last race.
Long-time Oakcliff match racers Doug Shannon finished second with a local crew and Jim McNally with a bit of a last minute pick up crew including Oakcliff staff and trainees finished 4th.
The first flight on Saturday started in a 6-8 knot northeasterly which gradually faded to 2-4 in the afternoon allowing for only three flights (10 races). On Sunday the northerly came in solid and steady with very few course changes, just a gradual shortening of the course as the southerly Oakcliff Cocktail Breeze pushed in.
“It was fierce competition and close combat in 5-10 knots of wind,” said coach Pearson Potts. “It took some serious patience especially from a skipper’s perspective with light hands on the wheel.”
On Friday, Potts coached the clinic which allowed competitors to advance their skills in start strategies, match racing rules and boat handling tactics. On Saturday, Potts rotated amongst the boats as an observer.
“Saturday was a light air day and a no brainer one hundred percent lead back,” added Dave Perry.
Most good starts were led by teams who placed themselves well to leeward at the pin. “I wanted to lead back in light air, starting left and leeward of the opponent with the pin as the favored end…it was all left,” said Perry who won each of his matches in the first three flights.
The round-robin had 2 tie breaks to pit Perry against Shannon and Murphy against McNally in the Semi-Finals. Shannon upset Perry to move onto the finals against Murphy. McNally with a mostly pickup crew gave Perry a run for his money in the Petit-Finals which came down to a crazy upwind versus downwind penalty and McNally’s attempt to spin and win at this finish became a spin and sit in the dying breeze.
“There was some great match racing, especially during the first few races on Sunday,” said Lindsey Winter, Grade 4 skipper and Oakcliff graduate. “Being able to talk about tactics with such experienced sailors like Dave Perry and Pearson Potts was so helpful as a novice skipper like me.”
“It was the best match race coaching so far,” said Stephanie Skrizowski who also competed in Oakcliff’s Grade 3 in June.
Oakcliff will host two other match race regattas before the International Match Race Regatta from August 25-29. The next match race regatta will be a Grade 5 July 30-31 followed by a Grade 3, August 6-7. Between now and September, Oakcliff continues to host weekly Wednesday night fleet racing on its Match 40s. Supporters are also invited to sail Shields, Classics, Lasers and Sunfish on Friday afternoons.