Agnew and Co make ground

Butch Agnew and his team-mates on board Overproof made up considerable ground in the standings on day two of the Viper 640 North American Championships in Kingston, Ontario yesterday.

The local sailor and his colleagues produced an 8-11-8-14 record in the four races contested in windy and shifty conditions to climb eight places from 20th to 12th after discarding their worst score to date (25th).

“It was an awesome day of sailing, we were in the top ten a few times,” Agnew said.

“I had a lot of Snickers bars and now I’m chasing them down with Gosling’s Dark ‘n Stormies, so it’s been a pretty good day.”

Agnew is competing with Ontario-based skipper Marc Farmer as the main sheet and spinnaker trimmer.

Also competing among the 36-strong racing fleet is Somers Kempe, the past Royal Bermuda Yacht Club commodore, on board Smokin.

Kempe, whose crew is comprised of husband and wife pair Adam (main) and Debbie Barboza (jib) and 13-year-old son Sebastian (bow), are ninth in the standings with five top-ten showings under their belt.

Kempe made a brilliant start yesterday after placing fifth and eighth in the opening two races before disaster struck at the start of the third when his jib halyard broke.

“We had to race in after the jib halyard broke and pull the rig out of the boat and fish a new one down into the mast and then put the rig back into the boat and set it up,” Kempe said.

“We then raced back out and were able to make the last start of the day so we didn’t get a DNC on the scorecard. The crew did an awesome job today.

“Really nuclear conditions; windy out of the north and cooler than yesterday (Thursday) but very shifty. Twenty-five degree shifts and flat water, really good sailing.”

Yesterday saw Canadian skipper Lee Shuckerow replace overnight leader Peter Beardsley, of the United States, at the top of the standings.

The regatta concludes tomorrow.