Teams from Mount Desert Island, Rockland Community Sailing, Islesboro Central School, Southern Maine (SoME) and Boothbay Region raced on Boothbay Harbor on Sunday, April 21 in the first of this spring’s Pen Bay League Series.

In a tightly-fought battle, Islesboro had 69 total points to Boothbay’s 73. Consistency was the key as the Islesboro sailors always were in the top 10, with most finishes in the top five.

Playing the shifts as the wind went northerly then westerly was the key throughout the day. Smart sailing, good starts and not fouling competitors made for good finishes too, said Patrick DiLalla, RCS coach.

RCS came in third followed by MDI and Southern Maine represented well for their first trip to Boothbay and a Pen Bay event, DiLalla said.

This is the league’s third year and was the 10th Pen Bay Series regatta. Racing takes place in the spring and fall sailing seasons moving north in the spring and south in the fall to take advantage of small weather differences between the venues around the Penobscot Bay.

Click on link below to view complete scores.

Boothbay Harbor Yacht Club, Rockland Community Sailing and MDI Community Sailing host the regattas.

Pen Bay League events depart from traditional high school sailing by welcoming middle school and conglomerate teams to compete. RCS and SoME are conglomerate teams with students from several schools.

SoME was invited to try the Pen Bay League this spring. Camden Hills Regional High School team lacked enough sailors on the heels of school spring break week but are expected to be at full strength for the Pen Bay #2 in May.

The league is open to new teams, and the teams are always open to having new sailors.

DiLalla said the fine spring weather saw clear skies and temperatures in the 50s with a puffy northwesterly that by the last race had switched to a southeasterly seabreeze. Throughout the day the wind averaged 8-10 knots with gusts to 15 and lulls to 2. There was one capsize in the chilly waters that delayed racing a few minutes.

The format also differs from traditional high school races in that the courses may vary from Interscholastic Sailing Association prescriptions and rotations are permitted to maximize the number of races run. Nine races were completed while the race committee moved the course several times to capture neutral weather starts.

Islesboro leads the series with the next event at Rockland Community Sailing’s Apprenticeshop on Sunday, May 6. The third and final event of the Pen Bay League Series occurs on Saturday, May 26 at MDI during the Great Harbor Regatta.

As is frequently the case in Maine High School sailing the host Boothbay parents provided refreshments to develop the camaraderie so important among the schools, especially the smaller ones like Islesboro and Boothbay.

In a public-private partnership common among public schools that compete in scholastic sailing, the Boothbay Region School District, the Boothbay Harbor Yacht Club and the BHYC Junior Program Foundation support the Boothbay RHS sailing team which hosted the event.

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