With just 42 boats on the line, Miami Race Week is suffering almost as badly from the credit crunch as Miami Beach’s real estate market, and the once-bustling docks at the Miami Beach Marina are nearly barren of the big boats that made the SORC great. For those who remember those days it is depressing as hell – but for those who don’t, there’s still plenty of action on the course to enjoy, even if it isn’t in your class.
With so few boats showing up, Premiere Racing cut costs by cutting circles (and apparently, people to reset the marks), and all fleets are on just one course, meaning traffic is common. With gusts in the low twenties today, carnage was common too. Most karmically comical, an official Acura Premiere Racing Media Boat crashed into Jim Swartz’s Melges 32 “Q” during a pre-start, ripping out most of Q’s stanchions. Q got average points on redress. More dramatically, the comparatively Corinthian TP-52 (for a TP-52, anyway) Anema Core blew out one kite before the first start, then another in the third race. Since they were in last place already, and owner Ennio Staffini just watched $30,000 explode in a few hours, they headed in – and rumors are flying that the Staffini has cancelled all crew dinners and breakfasts for the weekend…
Here’s a a bit of the drama from Florida photographer Marco Oguendo. You can find more out about MRW here.