Bob Buzzelli’s legacy lives on, drawing multihull sailors from around the country to the Gulf Coast waters in Sarasota, Florida each October. This year the Weta Trimaran swarm of 14 boats was all the buzz throughout the weekend at the friendly host site, Sarasota Sailing Squadron. The highlight of the event for Dick Hitchcock, Weta Trimarans of Florida dealer was having four female skippers in one regatta! Hitchcock calls this the “sweet side” of Weta sailing.
A few Weta newbies joined the swarm including Bob Curry, a 17 time Hobie National Champion and Hobie World Champion. Curry hopped on a charter boat and was off to the races. Another newbie was Randy “Smiley” Mulligan who will be back for more with his so-called friend, Knox Rodgers from Atlanta. Where in the world is the “real” Randy?!?
On Saturday, several of us had croissants for breakfast while thinking of a “special” West Coast Weta Sailor. Sorry, no Donutz on the menu this time! After fuelling up for the morning, sailors navigated through the mooring field of sailboats to the race course on Sarasota Bay. Racing began with light winds of 8-14kts. Wetas got the first start on course two running windward/leewards while getting in five races. Jen and Tim French had a great time sailing two-up while testing out their latest adaptive sailing system. It was tight racing for Linda Wright of Fort Walton Beach, Florida and Tiffany Alponat of Ohio going head to head with several photo finishes.
Live music, food and festivities drew the swarm together on Saturday night. Knox Rodgers even hopped up to “shake that booty” to the beat. A word of warning to sailors, “Keep an eye on your sunglasses before they disappear on another sailor’s head!” While “Mixmaster” was busy with beverages, “Klepto” inadvertently wore her sunglasses and disappeared for the evening.
Sunday winds provided much excitement blowing 16-20kts during four races. Things got a little crazy at the weather mark when the other multihulls came to a dead stop before tacking. Meanwhile, Wetas with screechers filled would blow by the other fleets. Cliff Peshak’s skillful driving enabled him to thread the needle just as two dead in the water F16’s had us sandwiched in when the screecher was popped. Randy Smyth joined the mix on trimaran “Sizzor” while flying a hull over us to prevent a collision. During race three, Tiffany Alponat and John Adams got in a true “Kerfuffle” demonstrating their square dancing skills on the water with a few do-see-dos. Alponat’s ama came flying up and hit Adams in the face knocking out a front tooth. “Toothless” Adams survived the collision and takes full responsibility for initiating the dance with the “Extractor”. “Toothless” is so looking forward to the much needed dental work upon arriving at home.
In the end, the leaderboard was split with first and second place going to the men, Bob Curry and John “Toothless” Adams. Third and fourth went to the ladies, Linda Wright and Tiffany “Extractor” Alponat. It was a fabulous weekend of Weta FUN amongst the 52 registered boats! The swarm was buzzing that the 2016 Buzzelli Multihull Rendezvous will be overrun with Wetas. Are you going to join the Swarm?