The record year — 1983

1983 clipRecently we tried to get a good handle on the number of boats that raced each year in the Vineyard Race. We’ve put together a pretty good collection of articles and figured out numbers for most races. That raised the question — which years were the most popular?

According to our records, 128 boats raced in 1983, the most ever. That year top honors went to Charles Shumway of Naples, Fla., sailing Esprit, a Rodgers 43.  Shumway, who chartered the boat from Peter Van Arsdale, managed to win shorthanded.

From The Advocate of Stamford:

With only seven people sailing the boat over the two-day race to Buzzards Bay light tower and back, Shumway found it necessary to have three watches of two people each with him helping wherever needed. Not only did Shumway have to act as skipper and navigator but an occasional stint at cook was called for as well.

Other trophy winners that year:

  • Toscana, winner fo the 1983 Northern Ocean Racing Trophy. She also won the De Coursey Fales Trophy for being the first boat to finish the Vineyard Race.
  • Messenger, winner of the Cotton Blossom Overall Performance Trophy for winning her IOR division by the largest margin.
  • R. Wave, winner of the William Ziegler Jr. Memorial Trophy for having the best elapsed time by a boat sailing under PHRF.
  • Wow, winner of the Jig Time Overall Performance Trophy for winning her PHRF division by the largest margin.
  • A Train, winner of the Nina Trophy.
  • Tigger, winner of the Staff Commodores’ Cornfield Trophy.

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