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Bay View Boat Club, San Francisco - Plastic Classic 2014
The small and funky 51 year old Bay View Boat Club, centered in the heart of one of the hottest real estate regions on the planet, is the envy of of every developer on the San Francisco Peninsula. It, and it's even funkier, smaller and older cousin just up the road, The Mariposa Hunters Point Yacht Club exist, in part of a grandfather clause via the Port of San Francisco's leasing agreement. It's a step back in time, just like the boats in the Plastic Classic it has hosted faithfully since 1985.

The vintage fiberglass only event, showcases the working man's sailboats. Some are in bristol condition some not so much. But doesn't phase the people who love to sail them and this is, without a question a favorite for the owners and crews that still enjoy sailing them for the sake of sailing.

71 Boats broken into 9 divisions competed in the 10.7 nm event on San Francisco's South Bay, which provided brilliant sun, plenty of breeze, and interesting 2 plus knot flood and the usual distraction at the windward " T" mark.

J-24's, Olson 25's, Merit 25', Triton 28's and Catalina 30's each had their own division's and the remaining hodgepodge of boats were broken into 4 groupings with a wide variety of batst you don't see at your average regatta these days. A Soverel 30 MH-IV, Lancer 36F vs a Shock 34 PC in on start for example. When was the last time you sailed on a Black Watch 37? A Rawson 30? A Cape Dory 27? The Plastic Classic brings them all out in the joyous celebration that pronounces "[I] You don't need to big money to have big fun[/I]"

The wind, as is likened to do on this part of the bay, at this time of year showed up when it usually does. About 1:00 PM. Which just happens to be the scheduled 1st gun. What do you know?

The aforementioned current, which was on the rise, created a plethora of navigational theories on to the best route. Hitch left for clearer air and hopefully current relief against the windward shoreline, or stay right and use the current to guide you in past the large RO-RO's that live in the area.

The windward mark, tucked up in the cove that leads to the club, creates its own conundrums with boats already rounding, tangling with current relieve advocates on port working their way up. Add to the mix, the "T" mark boat, with the visual distractions. Apparently it gets excessively warm on the mark boat as the female guest seem to need to provide their fun bags with some cool breeze with surprising regularity. And then there is the fellow who got shanghaied on his way home from an apparent rave the previous night and did not have anything other than his flower power bunny man outfit. This IS San Francisco, and we respect his attire 100%.

Once rounding the visual distraction, which most did successfully, with the exception of Sea Spirit, which may have gotten a tad too close to the fun bags and hooked a rode and then some, it was all downhill to the leeward mark off the Naval Air Station off Alameda. The current, banking off the Alameda shore seemed to increase quite a bit as did the breeze. This being a two lap affair, the crews, in general figure out how best to compensate for conditions and their vessel's particular pointing ability and yaw.

When all is said and done with the racing portion, the troops head back to the Bay View for festivities. What the BVBC lacks in on premises parking, it equally matches in lack of dock space. But that deters few, who set their hooks and join in the massive raft up to continue the party, which eventually leads to dinghy rides to the club, awards, music, food and more celebration of all things plastic and classic!

Results: http://sailwave.com/results/2014_Plastic_Classic.htm

Photo : Erik Simonson
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