Comodoro Rasco – Final
Miami, February 4, 2018. Report by Carol Cronin “The Comodoro Rasco just has its own special vibe.” That’s how Peter Commette describes it, and I agree. I don’t know of any other regatta that combines so well the Serious Sailing, Serious Fun motto. The regatta is an “Old Man” regatta, initiated by Snipe legend Gonzalo “Old Man” Diaz Sr to honor Commodore Manuel Rasco of the Miramar Yacht Club in Havana. Old Man doesn’t believe in throwouts, so it’s a 5 race series over two days. That means no pushing the line or taking chances on the water, and it leaves plenty of time for socializing after sailing.
Miami, February 4, 2018.
Report by Carol Cronin
“The Comodoro Rasco just has its own special vibe.” That’s how Peter Commette describes it, and I agree. I don’t know of any other regatta that combines so well the Serious Sailing, Serious Fun motto. The regatta is an “Old Man” regatta, initiated by Snipe legend Gonzalo “Old Man” Diaz Sr to honor Commodore Manuel Rasco of the Miramar Yacht Club in Havana. Old Man doesn’t believe in throwouts, so it’s a 5 race series over two days. That means no pushing the line or taking chances on the water, and it leaves plenty of time for socializing after sailing.
This year featured 10-18 knots of puffy northeast breeze on Saturday that tested rusty hiking muscles. Raul Rios and Sofia Rivera (PUR) gave us all a sailing lesson, even though they were christening a brand new boat and had some tacking challenges with jib sheet blocks that didn’t play well with their respective cleats. Chomping at Raul and Sophia’s transom were Peter and Connie Commette, who posted a 3-2-2 in the big breeze despite limited sailing since the 2017 Worlds. Kim Couranz and I fought above our combined weight (280 pounds) to come into the dock in third overall, despite a blown outhaul block (something none of us had ever experienced before on a Snipe).
And here’s what I love about the Snipe class. Even knowing Kim and I were in a position to challenge for second overall (especially with a forecast for lighter winds on Sunday), Peter spent an hour right after sailing devising a solution, and then implementing it, to remedy our busted outhaul block. Serious Sailing, Serious Friends make for serious Fun on and off the water.
The other thing that makes the Rasco a must-do Snipe regatta is the Saturday night party, hosted by Carmen and Old Man Diaz at their home. Lasagna, salad, Cuban desserts, and sailing stories (current and otherwise) dominate the first half of the evening. Once everyone has finished eating, Peter then goads the Old Man into showing our favorite video. Taken in 1959, the first piece shows Fidel Castro and company marching into Havana. Then we switch to family footage, with slightly younger versions of Old Man and Carmen as well as Augie, Gonzo, and Ana. A little sailing footage (and a few shots of Comodoro Rasco, standing on his large motor yacht) sparks stories from Old Man about sportsmanship, sailing well, and finishing second (to Paul Elvstrom) at the 1959 Snipe Worlds.
On Sunday, we sailed two more races—early in the day, so travelers from the cold white north could (regrettably) still make a flight home that night. Once again, Raul and Sofia showed excellent light air speed for two more bullets. Peter and Connie defended second place, and Kim and I held off locals David Hernandez and Liam Munzemaier to take third. Ashore, we all toasted the first and second place finishers with a rousing chorus of La Bomba Va, another Rasco tradition, and sadly went our separate ways.
Next winter, make plans to attend the Rasco. You won’t regret it.
Final results after 5 races (no discard)
1. Raul Rios & Sofia Rivera, 5
2. Peter Commette & Connie Commette, 14
3. Carol Cronin & Kim Couranz, 18
4. David Hernandez & Liam Munzemaier, 24
5. Lisa Pline & Lexi Pline, 33
… full results …
Pos,Sail, Boat, Skipper, Yacht Club, Results, Total Points
1. PUR 29841, , Raul Rios, FVPR/CNSJ/DRD, 1-1-1-1-1- ; 5
2. 29442, Screaming Peacock, Peter Commette, Lauderdale YC, 3-2-2-2-5- ; 14
3. 30860, , Carol CRONIN, Severn Sailing Association, 4-3-5-3-3- ; 18
4. 29114, , David Hernandez, Coral Reef yacht Club, 10-4-4-4-2- ; 24
5. 31313, , Lisa Pline, Severn Sailing Association, 9-7-7-6-4- ; 33
6. 30236, , Kenneth VOSS, CRYC/CGSC, 6-5-9-8-7- ; 35
7. 30364, snipe, Raul Faura, Miami, FL, 2-6-6-13-13- ; 40
8. 30571, Superfly, Sharon Seymour-Johnson, Lauderdale Yacht Club, 5-14-3-10-9- ; 41
9. 29781, , Charlie Bess, CRYC, 8-8-11-5-12- ; 44
10. 29995, Snipe, Ivan Riano, CGSC, 11-10-8-11-8- ; 48
11. 31309, , Andrew Klein, Winchester Boat Club, 7-9-17/DNS-7-10- ; 50
12. 31007, , Katherine Bennett, Deep Creek Yacht Club, 14-12-12-9-6- ; 53
13. 29777, , Trey Shipp, Atlanta Yacht Club, 12-15/DNF-10-15-15/OCS- ; 67
14. 23491, Muskrat, John Shannahan, Tred Avon Yacht Club, 13-13-14-14-14- ; 68
15. 30027, Snipe, Garrett Dixon, Lauderdale Yacht Club, 15-11-13-17/DNS-17/DNS- ; 73
16. 30336, Popeye, Gonzalo Diaz, CGSC, 17/DNS-17/DNS-17/DNS-12-11- ; 74