J/29 and J/120 sailing Round Island(Edgartown, MA)- Edgartown Yacht Club’s ‘Round-the-Island Race (’RTI) – one of America’s oldest distance races– took place Saturday around Martha’s Vineyard. The 80-year-old race originated in 1938 and, except for the years of the Second World War, has been an annual event since then. It is part of the Edgartown Yacht Club’s Edgartown Race Weekend, which includes two days of buoy racing (tomorrow and Friday) and a ‘Round-the-Sound Race that began immediately after the start for the ’RTI.

“The race was first conceptualized to be reminiscent of the race around the Isle of Wight in England, which was the course of the first America’s Cup,” said EYC Big Boat Racing Committee Co-Chair, Hal Findlay. “The distance around Martha’s Vineyard (56 nm) is only a few miles longer; both courses have views of cliffs, headlands, villages and open water; and the tidal currents and wind effects are important in both.”

J/109 sailing Round Island raceStarting at 0800 Saturday morning, the ’RTI fleet (split into classes for Classics; PHRF A, B and C; PHRF Non-Spinnaker and Double-Handed) sailed between Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket along the east beach of Chappaquiddick. At midday, the fleet headed into the open Atlantic Ocean off the south coast of the Vineyard. In the afternoon, after rounding the gorgeous cliffs of Gay Head, the sailors then headed up Vineyard Sound to the finish near Edgartown Harbor. The fleet passed within sight of seven lighthouses: Cape Poge, Gay Head, Tarpaulin Cove, Nobska, West Chop, East Chop and Edgartown.

Douglas Curtiss’s J/111 WICKED 2.0 won PHRF A while Rick Egan’s J/46 WINGS took third place on the podium.

Winning the largest class- PHRF B- and leading a J/Boat sweep of the top five was Ed Dailey’s (Beverly, Mass.) J/109 RAPTOR. “It was a terrific race,” said Dailey, who has competed in the race seven times and has won his class twice now. “It always has so many different conditions, and the Vineyard is a storied place; it’s kind of magical.” Just behind was an amazing tie for second place between Stephen McManus’ J/120 SAYKADOO and Eliot Shanabrook’s J/109 HAFA ADAI. Fourth was Stephen Besse’s J/120 APRES’ and fifth place went to Ned Joyce’s J/105 DARK’N’STORMY.

J/70s sailing Round Sound RaceFinishing third in PHRF C class was Ira Perry’s J/29 SEEFEST while Steve Dahill’s J/35C RIVA took 4th in class. Finally, Alan Fougere’s J/160 AVATAR finished 4th in PHRF Non-spinnaker class.

The ‘Round-the-Sound fleet, which started directly after the ’RTI boats, finished midday on Saturday, sailing a course that took them seven miles toward Hyannis then four miles west and six miles back home. Winning the J/70 class was Isabella Giordano’s TONIC, second was Mike Eberstadt’s ARTEMIS, and third was Tim Cohan’s GHOST. Sailing Photo Credits- Stephen Cloutier For more Round the Island Race & Sound sailing informationAdd to Flipboard Magazine.

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