ILYA Senior Champs X- 4 Ellie Harned & Austin Steiner
ILYA Junior Champs X-41 Jack Steiner and Alec Harned
Photos by Molly Burns
The race committee for the seniors sent the kids out for a 9:00am start and the juniors for a 9:30 start on Saturday morning. The only issue was there was not more that 3-4 mph of wind as the fleets went into postponement and waited. The kids were getting anxious by 10:30am wondering what would happen. The fleet representative stated to the race committee to wait until 11 to see if any wind would fill in for racing. But at 10:45am there was no wind and the seniors decided to call it a day as they had until 12:00pm to start a race but the conditions were only getting worse as the motorboat chop was getting bigger. The juniors followed and as typical, some wind filled in after the race was called which we have all seen a million times. But the regatta was over and the race to get boats out was now on. It was not a fast process as we all know the obstacles that we face with Minnetonka and the island. But after a few hours we were done and ready for trophies to be held at the school house, which was hot and very sunny but the best place to host the presentation.
For the first time ever the Junior and Senior winning yachts both hailed from Pine Lake in Wisconsin as Ellie Harned & Austin Steiner took the senior title along with his brother Jack Steiner taking the Junior title with Ellie’s brother Alec as his crew. So yes, not only were they from the same lake, both teams were from the same two families. It had to be a very proud feeling for the Harned and Steiner families as they are the Inland Lake Yachting Association X Boat Champions. They both sailed very well and very consistently to win the events.
It has been a long time since Minnetonka has held this event and they did a very nice job with all the logistics they must deal with. There were a lot of familiar faces who were volunteering their time to help make it a class act. We thank all from Minnetonka for their hard work and appreciate everything they did to make us feel welcome.
It is hard to believe that the 2019 X boat season only has one more event as the Blue Chip on Cedar is two weeks away for all those who qualified. It is harder to believe that after all the X Regattas this year we had different winners at each event. This year the class was so evenly matched that this has to be a first. We will have more on this later as we have a final season wrap up at the end of the year after the Blue Chip.
Congrats to all the winners at this year’s event and a special congratulations to the Harned and Steiner families on winning the X ILYA Championships in both the Senior and Junior Fleets.
The day started with a delay as a storm rolled through so we waited on shore. Everything cleared and the fleets went out to race.
On the senior side, J2 Jack Scherer & Ethan Bowman sailed the left side and then tacked to port and worked the puffs beautifully to punch out on the fleet and led the first leg. They sail a great race to win as they were not challenged. It showed some great tactical minds working together really well. A17 Lindsey & Kelsey Vollmar sailed the shifts to grab second with X4 Ellie Harned & Austin Steiner in 3rd. P9 John & Andy Baker were 4th with V19 Quinn Kaiser & Stuart Niedziela in 5th.
Race two of the day saw the M11 Kate Ness & Martha Hughes grab the early lead and were looking good until another local M88 Max Sigel & John Kotovic sailed the right side very well and were able to over take the M11 and grab the win. The M11 was second with A25 Austin & Max Barkow in 3rd and Ellie Harned & Austin Steiner in 4th followed by M77 Tryg Van Wyk and Andrew Bertsch in 5th.
After lunch Race 4 started with V31 Ella Schieble and Ella Walker port tacking the fleet and looking good but fellow Pewaukee sailors V19 Quinn Kaiser & Stuart Niedziela were right on their tail and able to grab the early lead. But the Ella’s were not to be denied as the V31 took the lead and never looked back even though the V19 was within striking distance at the gate. V31 went to the left gate and all the pressure and angle was there for them to grab the win. OO747 Sean Mihelich & Quinn O’Day sailed the right side to take second with X4 Ellie Harned & Austin Steiner in 3rd. V19 Kaiser & Niedziela were 4th followed by D51 Ian McClenathan & Anna Clair in 5th.
X4 Harned and Steiner sailed very consistently to grab the regatta lead with one day to go.
On the junior side it is the Charlie & Will and Jack & Alec show. As V61 Charlie Allen and Will Utz won all three races in exciting fashion to move closer to the top of the leader board. it was X41 Jack Steiner & Alec Harned grabbing top five races to continue to lead the Regatta. They currently hold a 3 point lead over the V61 with one day to go. Rounding out the top five is V213 Fritz Simon and Megan Isabell in 3rd with I45 Finn Burdick & Colton Hibbard in 4th with local favorites M21 Jimmy Hughes & Graham Pierce in 5th.
At the awesome party on the island that all the kids enjoyed they did finish the volleyball tournament that was run by Sam Rogers and Coye Harrett, which was won by defending champions Pewaukee Yacht Club. Congrats to the volleyball winners!
More racing to come to come tomorrow..........
Minnetonka packed the punch today as the wind speeds grew in the morning. Race committee was able to get one race in both fleets.
On the senior side P9 John and Andy Baker grabbed the early lead but OO144 Jackson Walker and Paxton Denton not only grabbed the lead but took over to dominate the first race and win. B99 Augie Jarecki & Alex Mueller along with M11 Kate Ness & Martha Hughes finished second and third. The Bakers sailed well to finish 8th as the wind was building.
They started a second race but on the second windward leg the race committee started to get wind readings over the limits and called the race as V31 Ella Schieble & Meta Simon were winning the race.
On the Junior side X41 Jack Steiner & Alec Harned grabbed an early lead and was never seen again. They led the entire race and won comfortably. I45 Finn Burdick & Colton Hibbard were second and the NO5 Cole Thompson & Julia Jansen edged out V213 Fritz Simon & Megan Isabell to take third and fourth respectively.
After the seniors called the second race the juniors did too! We sat on the island until 3:30 when both fleets called it a day as we will try again tomorrow.
The X Inland is finally upon us and what a welcome from Minnetonka! As we arrived we saw friendly faces to welcome and help direct us to make a smooth transition to launch and get the boats to their moorings and then onto the island.
The kids were excited for the opening ceremonies as Max Zinn was the MC for the event. Jenny Zinn & Sarah Jewett welcomed all the lakes to enthusiastic music picked for all the lakes with Minnetonka entering to “my house” by Flo rida which was a perfect way to finish the walk in.
Minnetonka has been planning this event for over a year and it showed. They missed no detail! Great job to all and thank you!
Sam Rogers led the volleyball tournament as his patience was pushed as some were almost disqualified before it started. But he got the tournament off to a roaring start as we are well into the bracket.
Tomorrow racing will start and the wind is expected to build during the day as we are excited to see who rises to the top........stay tune for all the reporting tomorrow on Instagram and all the X sites.....
IRwin R. Fletcher, X Fleet Scribe tells you where to go to follow the action!