Lake Ontario 300 Race, 2008.
A Lake Ontario 300 Story!
The longest fresh water race in the world.
“And a little lamb shall lead them…..” Or in this case, maybe it was a big black sheep…..Ed Radonic left his slip at PCYC to begin his first LO300 full of optimism, on his beautiful, black Jeanneau 39i Performance, Black Diamond. New boat, new crew (3 with only 1 year experience), new sails (asymmetric spinnaker 1 week old and flown only once), all excited to start the race…. However….Fate intervened and the only spinnaker on board tore almost in half before the snuffer was fully raised, just after the start of the race.
Ed and his crew didn’t give up. Without starting the engine but after placing an emergency call to Ron at Triton Sails, they sailed back into the PCYC harbour and tied up at the dock. Ron picked up the ripped sail, sped back to the loft, repaired it and had it back to Black Diamond within a very reasonable time.
Ed and his crew sailed off the wall still without starting the engine and rejoined the race; 3 hours behind everyone else, but without penalty! Picking up some good winds, the fleet was in sight by Whitby. At Rochester, with only one crew member on board who had ever flown a spinnaker before and an injury to another’s hand while trying to raise it again at 3:00 a.m., the decision was made to err on the side of safety and complete the race with white sails. They may have been the final finisher in their division, but they are certainly not last in our estimation. (not including one boat that did not finish in the division)
What an example of the sports man’s spirit of adventure, the persistence and perseverance that characterize long distance racing! The novice showed us something about how it is done.
For everyone, the LO300 of 2008 was a truly challenging race, with varied conditions and a little something different going on all the time: Sail changes, flies, sun, heat, wind, squalls and rain. Good food, good camaraderie… And they went the distance! A record 127 vessels, including 3 multi-hulls, met at the start line and 103 finished the course.
Congratulations to the winners and to all those who took part!!!
Article written by Caroline Archibald of the Port Credit Yacht Club.
Black Diamond Crew: Ed Radonic, Cezary Makowski, Blair Flemming, Stephen Bye and Wolf Paunic.
Black Diamond finished in 3 days 8 hours. Raced in the top rated fleet with such boats as Defiant, a Canada Cup Boat. The Lake Ontario 300’s official web site is www.lo300.org