PROVINCETOWN — The Provincetown Yacht Club crammed three races and a party into Labor Day Weekend — and with just a week left in the summer racing season, the PYC crown is up for grabs.
On Saturday, Sept. 5, five boats competed for the top spot: Donna Turley’s Welcome, Joel Shaw’s Selma Rose, Jack Peak’s Snark III, AG Breitenstein’s Coot, and Steve Lambert’s Ghost. Crewed by Berit Pratt and Ray Tobias, Welcome pulled out to an early lead. She maintained it throughout, preserving her first-place finish even after handicaps were applied. Shaw’s Selma Rose (crewed by Frank Mattioti) and Peak’s Snark III (crewed by duo Rich Waldo and Rob Davis) earned silver and bronze, nudging out powerhouse Coot for the first time in a blue moon.
Fleet members linked up their boats at Vice Commodore Jack Peak’s mooring afterwards for the annual Raft-Up Party — what Peak called “a natural social distancing activity.”
Sunday saw two make-up races — necessary after a summer of fickle winds and weather — attended by all of Saturday’s fleet, save Coot. The day’s first race offered the Rhodes 19 boats (Sparkle Marie, Snark III, and Selma Rose) redemption after Saturday’s loss; they earned the podium spots, while Welcome trailed in fourth place.
And they largely repeated those results in the second race, which, said Peak, included “some polite ‘conversations’ between boats about ‘barging’ and issues of ‘right of way.’ ”
Selma Rose snuck up from behind to pass both leading Rhodes 19s — Sparkle Marie and Snark III — on the last leg, but Snark caught up in the last 100 yards, inching across the finish line just four seconds ahead to nab first place.
“I didn’t think I had a chance at all,” said Peak, who spent a solid chunk of the summer season in the fleet’s bottom tier. “But now I’m really up there.”
Five boats — the regulars: Welcome, Snark, Selma Rose, Coot, and Sparkle Marie — are in contention for winning Series III, the final race of which will take place on Saturday. But the drama doesn’t stop there. Sept. 12 will determine the season’s overall winner. Welcome and Snark are tied in total victories; the dark horse candidate, Coot, trails four points behind and could upset the field with a win.