Sailors make a splash at annual regatta

Stephen Summers guides his Butterfly sailboat to the starting line as local sailors prepare for the start of the first race in the Capital City Sailing Association’s 4th annual Mayor’s Cup Regatta at Binder Lake on Saturday.

Stephen Summers guides his Butterfly sailboat to the starting line as local sailors prepare for the start of the first race in the Capital City Sailing Association’s 4th annual Mayor’s Cup Regatta at Binder Lake on Saturday. Photo by Kris Wilson.

For the participants at the 4th annual Mayor’s Cup Regatta, the competition was smooth sailing — for the most part.

Halfway through the event, one of the boats abruptly tipped over, plunging its crew of two into the chilly water of Jefferson City's Binder Lake. The vessel’s occupants, Jeff and Amanda Wogan, later received a “capsize diamond ring” award to commemorate their last-place finish.

The race, hosted by the Capital City Sailing Association, featured participants of varying skill levels, from sailors with years of experience to newcomers who had only recently acquired their sea legs. Friends and family members of the competitiors turned out at Binder Park to cheer on the skippers and crews of 15 vessels as they navigated around a triangular course of red buoys.

Regatta participant Christiane Quinn paired up with Traci Newberry, a new association member, for the race. Though the two sailing partners have differing experience levels, Saturday was a first for both of them: Newberry’s first-ever race and Quinn’s first race at Binder Lake.

Quinn, who has been sailing since she was a teenager, brought her 14-year-old daughter, Francielie, along so she could watch the event from the referee boat.

“It’s the first time [Francielie] was in a boat, so it was kind of fun,” Quinn said.

Jamie Rasmussen, who sailed the course with her father Steve, also comes from a sailing background. In her case, a love for the sport has run in her blood from an early age — she had her first sailing experience as a two-week-old baby wrapped in a Snuggie.

“My dad was racing boats when I was born, and my mom didn’t want to be left behind just because she had a baby,” Rasmussen explained.

In accordance with official sailing rules, participants’ racing scores are calculated by multiplying the raw time taken to complete each race by a unique variable based on the boat’s model. Rasmussen said this adjustment is designed to make the competition more equitable, as different kinds of boats have differing advantages and capabilities in the water.

At the race’s conclusion, Mayor Eric Streumph presented the Mayor’s Cup — a polished trophy — to Columbia residents Leszek and Muriel Vincent, who swept the competition with a score of 4.5.

CCSA Commodore Jim Crabtree hopes events like the regatta will help spark spectators’ interest in sailing and encourage new membership in the organization. He said the Capital City Sailing Association, which started in 2008 with an advertisement placed in a newspaper, has steadily grown since its inception. Its number of boats has likewise expanded from five to 14. The association hosts club races on the first and third Saturday of each month from early May to the end of October.

Crabtree says he is especially proud of CCSA’s extended geographic reach.

“People come down from Columbia and up from Lake of the Ozarks,” he said, adding that sailors as far away as Vandalia have competed in the association’s events.

Facilities chairman Paul Rudder, who organized Saturday’s race, said he was extremely pleased with the event’s reception.

“We had a terrific time,” he said. “Largest turnout yet.”

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