Ernesto Rodriguez and Kathleen Tocke won a tight battle to claim the 2021 U.S. Snipe National Championship, with a net of 31 points over 9 races. The team of Raul Rios and Andrea Reifkohl Gonzalez finished in second–just one point back–at 32 points.
Neither Rodriguez/Tocke nor Rios/Riefkohl Gonzalez had good days on the water today, as Rodriguez/Tocke sailed to a 12-8 and Rios/Riefkohl Gonzalez a 14-5, but their earlier races were solid enough to keep them in the top slots.
The 52 teams competing in the Championship were postponed ashore for a hour to wait for a light southerly to fill in, and by the time they got out to the race course, the wind had settled in, and two races were held in 5-10 knots. A strong current kept the teams challenged on the start line and at mark roundings.
The top five were rounded out by Enrique Quintero/Charlie Bess in third place with 51 points, Augie Diaz/Barbie Brotons in fourth with 59 points, and Arthur Blodgett/Gracie Howe in fifth with 81 points.
With a rich history full of tradition, the Snipe Class awards a number of special trophies at Nationals each year. This year’s honorees:
- Commodore Charles E. Heinzerling Trophy for the winning skipper: Ernesto Rodriguez
- Portage Lakes Yacht Club Trophy for the winning crew: Kathleen Tocke
- Slauson Memorial Trophy for the second-place team: Raul Rios and Andrea Riefkohl Gonzalez
- Eleanor Williams Memorial Trophy for the highest placing woman (skipper or crew): Kathleen Tocke
- Carolyn Nute Memorial Trophy for the highest placing married couple: Alex and Lisa Pline
- Masters Trophy for the highest placing master skipper: Ernesto Rodriguez
- Masters Endurance Trophy for the oldest skipper: Stephan Irgens
- Macklanburg-Duncan Trophy for the chairman of the Race Committee of the SCIRA USA National Championship: Steve Podlich
- National Secretary Trophy for the SCIRA USA National Championship regatta chairperson: Lisa and Alex Pline
The fleet also encourages younger and women sailors to compete in the class. Awards were also given to:
- Top under 30 team: Raul Rios and Andrea Riefkohl Gonzalez
- Top junior (under 22) team: Noah Zittrer and Peter Foley
- Top women’s team: Carol Cronin and Kim Couranz
The hosting fleet, Annapolis Snipe Fleet 532, celebrates its 60th anniversary this year. So to highlight yet more Serious Sailing, Serious Fun, the regatta wrapped up with a birthday cake for the fleet. Coincidentally, it was also Snipe National Secretary Evan Hoffman’s birthday, so the entire fleet celebrated him with a rousing version of “Happy Birthday.”
With a range of conditions on the water and a terrific social scene off the water, the sailors enjoyed a great regatta. With 52 boats on the line, starts were often rather crowded–but there’s always room for more. Come join us and come Snipe sailing!