BASS HARBOR – For several days there had been questionable weather in the forecast for Sunday’s lobster boat races at Bass Harbor. When I arrived at the Bass Harbor Town Dock Sunday morning for the races there was a slight breeze, some chop in the outer harbor, and someone had pulled the plug as there was not much water in the harbor.
Boats started to arrive around 0800 and sign ups were steady. In the end we had 36 boats signed up for the races.
The first races of the day were the three Work Boat Classes, but there was just one entrant for all three. There were no entrants in Classes A (Skiffs 16-feet and under with outboards up to 30 hp, Operator 18 years and younger) and B (Inboards, outboards or outdrives 91-hp and over). Troy Alley came all the way from Jonesport with SEVEN, albeit on a trailer, and entered Class B (Inboards, outboards, or outdrives 31-90 hp).
There were only three boats, all in classes of their own, in the five Gasoline Classes so they were run down together. There were no entrants in Class A (4 & 6 cylinder 24 feet and over) and E (Over 525 cid, 28 feet and over, Turbos/superchargers). The question was could Mark Freeman’s FOOLISH PLEASURE run close to full speed and stayed ahead of Lindsay Durkee’s BLACK DIAMOND. The winner of Class B (V8, up to 375 cid, 24 feet and over) was DEFIANCE, Patrick Hanley. BLACK DIAMOND won Class C (V8, 376 to 525 cid, 24 feet and over) and FOOLISH PLEASURE won Class D (V-8, 376 to 540 cid, 28 feet and over).
Next up was the Diesel Classes and there were no entrants in Classes A (up to 235 hp, 24-31 feet); D (236-335 hp, 34 feet and over); I (551 to 700 hp, 28-35 feet); L (901 hp and over, 28 feet and over) and O (Non-working boats, any length, any horsepower). Four boats were scheduled to be on the line for Diesel Class B (up to 235 hp, 32 feet and over), but just three showed. Everett Beers’ MISS KARI LYNN showed the way to the finish line with a speed of 21 mph. There was just one boat (VENOM, Steven Osgood from Vinalhaven) entered in Class C (236 to 335 hp, 24 to 33 feet), and three in Class E (336 to 435 hp, 24-33 feet) so they were combined. VENOM came streaking up the right side of the course and crossed first. The winner of Class E was AUDREY MAY, Randy Durkee of Islesboro, with a speed of 32 mph. Four boats were signed up for Class F (336-435 hp, 34 feet and over), but just three came to the line. AIDEN MARINER. Winfred Alley from Beals Island led the way to the finish with a speed of 33 mph. The only entrant in Diesel Class G (436 to 550 hp, 28-35 feet) was RIGHT STUFF, Dana Beal of Beals Island, so he ran down with the two boats in Class H (436 to 550 hp, 36 feet and over). The winner of Diesel Class H was MELYNDA M., Willie Coombs of Prospect Harbor and back a couple of boat lengths was FIRST TEAM, Travis Otis of Searsport. There were two boats (GOLD DIGGER, Heather Thompson of Harrington and WHISKEY TANGO FOXTROT, Roger Kennedy of Steuben) entered in Class J (551 to 700 hp, 36 feet and over) and just one (JANICE ELAINE, David Myrick, Gouldsboro) in Class K (701 to 900 hp, 28 feet and over) so these classes were combined. JANICE ELAINE had a slight edge on GOLD DIGGER. When the flag dropped JANICE ELAINE jumped into the lead with GOLD DIGGER just behind him. Four boats came to the line for Class M(A) (40 feet and over, up to 500 hp). The early favourite was OLD SCHOOL, Chris Pope from Swan’s Island, but the unknown was the new boat, TENACIOUS, Steve ‘Spiff’ Carter of Bass Harbor. As they worked their way up the course OLD SCHOOL was leading with TENACIOUS just behind him. Five boats were entered in Class M(B), but just three came to the line. The favourite in this race was KIMBERLY ANN, Eric Beal of Milbridge, but just after the flag dropped, she went dead in the water due to an overload of fuel. This allowed Matt Shepard’s ALEXSA ROSE to slip by for the win. Three boats came to the line for Class N (40 feet and over, 751hp and over). Jumping right into the lead was MICHAELA KHLOE 1,000-hp Caterpillar], Chris Byers of Winter Harbor and he never looked back.
The next race was for Mitchell Cove Boats, which was won by MISS BETH III, George Lawson, Jr. of Bernard.
There were no entrants in Wooden Boat A and just one boat in Wood Boat Race B, which was Wayne Rich’s RICH RETURNS.
Two boats came to the line for the Gasoline Free-for-All and it was FOOLISH PLEASURE blasting her way through the waves to get the win over BLACK DIAMOND.
Six boats were on the line for the Diesel Free-for-All and since most can run between 40 and 45 mph it was anyone’s guess who would be the first to the finish line. As they worked their way up the course it was RIGHT STUFF sneaking up the right side for the win.
Four boats went to the line for the Fastest Lobster Boat and the winner was FOOLISH PLEASURE with JANICE ELAINE.
Five boats were on the line for the final race of the day, Bass Harbor’s Fastest Lobster Boat. It was MISS BETH III sliding over for the win with STEPPIN’ UP, Travis Lunt of Bass Harbor getting second.
BEALS ISLAND-JONESPORT – Anticipation was building for the Moosabec Reach Lobster Boat Races off of Jonesport and Beals Island. However, one always worries about fog being a problem at this event. The State had been experiencing hot and humid days, which brings in the fog, but that broke mid-week and we were expecting overcast skies with much cooler temperatures.
Sign-ups were steady before the race and when they were done we had 102 boats entered. Much of the anticipation centred around Shawn Alley’s LITTLE GIRL. She had received an engine transplant at Wayne Beal’s Boat Shop in Jonesport and had made a couple of runs on the Reach.
Now came the nightmare, the Work Boat Classes as there was 25 racers in three classes: Class A 4; Class B 8 and Class C 13. The first over in Class A was Teggan MacLaughlin of Addison followed by Noah Tobias Carver in DAWN TREADER. Class B has been dominated by Ralph Davis’ ALPEX having won this class since 2002 and today was no different. In a real close finish in Class C and winning by just mere feet was Marcus Fenton’s BANDIT with second going to Caleb Norton’s WHITE LIGHTIN’.
Next up was the Gasoline Classes and one of the most anticipated races of the day was going to be between LITTLE GIRL and FOOLISH PLEASURE. There were no entrants in Class A and just one in each of the other classes so they were run down together. As they made their way to the finish it was close, but LITTLE GIRL had a slight lead and crossed first for the win in Class E, followed by FOOLISH PLEASURE, winner of Class D; BLACK DIAMOND, Class C.
The 15 Diesel Class followed. Eight boats came to the line in Diesel Class A and in a great battle Jacob Kirby’s BARE BOTTOM slipped over the finish line just ahead of Anson Kelley’s MISTY MAE I. Three boats were signed up for Class B, but just two were on the line and the win went to Chad Libby’s MYRTE BELLE of Beals Island. The dominate and early favorite for Class C would be Roy Fagonde’s LAST DESIGN, however as they neared the finish line the win went to Richard Alley’s FAMILY ALLIANCE. Class D was another real close finish with the win going to SYLVIA JEAN, Glenn Libby and WRECKING CREW, Ivan Libby slipping over in second. Class E has been dominated by Dan Sawyer’s HIGH VOLTAGE and today was no different with second going to AUDREY MAY. The boat to beat in Class F is AIDEN MARINER and no one would get by him today. Second went to Brian Strout’s SUNSHINE CHALET. Three boats were on the line for Class G and this won by Wayne Beal’s MISS MARIENA with second going to RIGHT STUFF. Four boats were on the line for Class H and the win went to MISS NORMA. Next up was Class J and no one was surprised as GOLD DIGGER lead the way to the finish line. Another anticipated race was in Class K between two identical boats, JANICE ELAINE and LA BELLA VITA, Jeff Eaton, Deer Isle. The win went to Jeremy Beal’s MARIA’S NIGHTMARE II, followed over by JANICE ELAINE and right behind her was LA BELLA VITA. Class M(A) had nine boats come to the line and as they approached the finish line the top boats were still close. The win went to MISS TONIA, Milton Merchant immediately followed by FEELI’ NAUTI, Patrick Kelley in second. There were 12 boats in Class M(B) and there were split up into two heats with the usual suspects taking the top three spots in each heat. In the finals the win went to KIMBERLY ANN. Eleven boats were on the line for Class N and this class was split into two heats with the top three boats going to the finals. In the finals the winner was PIER PRESSURE.
Next up was the Wooden Boat Classes and there was just one boat entered, LITTLE GIRL and she ran down the course by herself. She instantly turned around after crossing the finish line and headed back down for the Gasoline Free-for-All and a rematch with FOOLISH PLEASURE. They were the only two boats on the line and again all eyes were on them as they both screamed for the finish line. It was close and LITTLE GIRL looked like she had the lead as she neared the finish line, but then she slowed and FOOLISH PLEASURE slipped by for the win. LITTLE GIRL was still moving and there was nothing obviously wrong, until they crossed the finish line and stopped. At that point Shawn walked aft and lifted the blower belt that was shredded and was laying on the deck.
Who would win the honours of being the top diesel boat? As the five entrants headed for the finish line it was JANICE ELAINE followed by LA BELLA VITA and GOLD DIGGER.
In the World’s Fastest Working Lobster Boat the winner was MARIA’S NIGHTMARE II followed over by JANICE ELAINE and LA BELLA VITA.
In the final race of the day World’s Fastest Recreational Lobster Boat FOOLISH PLEASURE was the only boat on the line and he raced up the course by himself.
STONINGTON – When I arrived at Billings Diesel & Marine last Sunday it was obvious that this was a great day for a lobster boat race. There was bright sunshine, no wind and cool, but we all knew the temperature would certainly climb and a slight breeze would build out of the sou’west.
There were seven boats tied to the dock, which had stayed the night. Sign-ups started just before 0800 and before 1000 everyone (75) was signed up and in the computer and we were good to go.
The first three races of the day were the Work Boat Classes. There were two in Class A and this was won by Jason Larrabee. In Class B the winner was Troy Alley’s SEVEN. Five boats were on the line for Class C and the winner was ONLY ADVICE, Edgar Robbins.
The next race was the John’s Bay Boat Race and there were four on the line. First over the line was RESOLUTE, Ryan Larrabee of Stonington. He was followed by Ben Wood’s EMMA & ANDREW; John Williams’ KHRISTY MICHELLE and Vance Bunker’s SARI ANN.
There were four boats in the five Gasoline, all in different classes: Class A CINDY JEN, Jon Johansen of Winterport; Class B no entrants; Class C BLACK DIAMOND, Lindsay Durkee of Islesboro; Class D Mark Freeman’s FOOLISH PLEASURE and Class E LITTLE GIRL, Shawn Alley. Since they were all in separate classes they were sent down together, each getting the win in their respective classes.
The Wooden Boat Races were up next and the easy winner of Wooden Boat A was LITTLE GIRL, who was followed over by Foy Brown’s EARLY BIRD from North Haven. Three boats came to the line for Wooden Boat B (over 36’), which was won by RESOLUTE.
There was only one Diesel Class that had no entrants and that was Class L. There was only one boat, BLACK THUNDAH II, Brandon Murphy of Stonington, in Class A and Class C, VENOM, so they ran down with the two entrants in Class B. The winner of Class B was EARLY BIRD followed over by HELLO DARLIN’ II, Cory McDonald of Stonington. Ivan Libby sailed down from Beals Island with WRECKING CREW and took the top spot in Diesel Class D with second going to OUTNUMBERED, Dan Carter of Blue Hill. Five boats were on the line for Diesel Class E and it was DESTINY, Danny Eaton, showing the way to the finish line with a speed of 36 mph. No one was surprised to see AIDEN MARINER take the victory in Diesel Class F. Second went to CALYPSO, Royce Fifield. The winner of Diesel Class G was RIGHT STUFF. Six boats came to the line for Class H and MISS NORMA outpaced MELYNDA M. for a one-two finish. We all know that MISTY, Chris Smith of Richmond has been a dominate boat in Class I, but the unknown entrant was Jacob Brown’s SHOWDOWN from North Haven. As they came up the course it was SHOWDOWN leading the way. No one was surprised to see GOLD DIGGER leading the other four entrants up the course in Class J. Another highly anticipated race was between BLUE EYED GIRL and MARIA’S NIGHTMARE II in Diesel Class K and today the winner was BLUE EYED GIRL. There were six boats on the line for Diesel Class M(A) and it was OLD SCHOOL getting the win. There were four boats on the line for Diesel Class M(B) and the win went to KIMBERLY ANN. The winner of Class N was SHE’S ALL WET. WILD WILD WEST made her first appearance of the day in Class O and flew down the course setting a new Diesel record with a speed of 61.3 mph.
Just FOOLISH PLEASURE and LITTLE GIRL came to the line for the Gasoline Free-for-All, which was won by LITTLE GIRL.
In the Diesel Free-for-All there were nine boats entered so they were broken up into two heats. In the finals WILD WILD WEST got the win and set the Diesel speed record again, this time at 61.6 mph.
The top spot in the Andrew Gove Memorial Cup Race was a close battle between BLUE EYED GIRL and MARIA’S NIGHTMARE II with the win going to BLUE EYED GIRL.
The final race of the day was the Fastest Lobster Boat Race and as the competitors streaked up the course many were wondering where LITTLE GIRL and WILD WILD WEST were. There was a little confusion and they were overlooked at the starting area. BLUE EYED GIRL grabbed the win, followed by LA BELLA VITA and GOLD DIGGER.
After the races were over there was a drawing for $1,000, which went to Eric Beal of KIMBERLY ANN. Now I am not sure how far out the Thoroughfare he had gotten, but I bet it did not take him long to turn around and come back to claim his prize!
FRIENDSHIP – When arrived at the Town Dock in Friendship I wondered where everyone was. Was a little rain going to stop them from coming? The forecast had been for rain and raining it was, sometimes light and sometimes heavy.
Sign-ups were slow, but steady and when all was said and done 30 boats had come to race. The low number meant that there were a lot of classes that would be combined and this would speed up the races.
Just after 1000 hrs. the finish line float was in place and we were ready go and so was the rain, which was now really coming down. First up was the three Work Boat Classes, which had a total of nine entrants signed in. In Work Boat Class A there was just one entrant, JENILY, Jennifer and Emily Noyes from Harpswell, and they came down the course by themselves. There were four boats signed up in Class B and five in Class C and they were combined and sent down. The dominate boat in Work Boat Class C has been CASCO MISS, Dave Johnston of Peaks Island, but today DELUSIONAL, Ron Pottle of Brunswick would get the with CASCO MISS right behind him. Following them was the winner of Class B, which was ZIPPIN’ TOO, Jacob Noyes, followed by his father David’s ZIPPIN’ in second.
There were only four boats signed up for the five Gasoline Classes, with no one in Class B and Class E. The first over the line was FOOLISH PLEASURE the winner of Gasoline Class D. There were two entrants in Class C, which was easily won by BLACK DIAMOND. Third over the line was ROAR, Jim Lee of Tenant’s Harbor, who took second in Class C. Then we waited and waited, and waited some more for the fourth boat to finish and win Class A, CINDY JEN.
Next up was the Diesel Classes and there were no entrants in Class A, B, D, F, H, L and O. With just one entrant in Class C, Class E and two in Class G so they were run together. Streaking over the line first was the winner of Class C, VENOM. He was followed over by the winner of Class G, his father, David in SPLIT SECOND. Next over was the winner of Class E, AUDREY MAY. There was a little confusion, but that dissipated quickly and HEATHER’S BOYS, Isaac Simmons of Friendship slipped over for a second place finish in Class G. There was one boat in Diesel Class I, LIL’ LISA MARIE, Gary Genthner of Round Pond so she joined the two racers in Diesel Class J. First over the line and winner of Class I was LIL’ LISA MARIE, Gary Genthner of Round Pond. Next came the winner of Class J, HEY BABY, Carl Gross of Vinalhaven. Second in Class J went to MONICA ELAINE, Steven Genthner of Friendship. One of the anticipated races was up next between BLUE EYED GIRL and LA BELLA VITA in Class K. BLUE EYED GIRL had gained separation and won by a boat length in a great finish. Three boats were registered in Class M(A). First over the line by a boat length was OLD SCHOOL. Second went to INSTIGATOR, Scott Carter of Waldoboro. There were two boats in Class M(B) and one in Class N and they were run up together. First over the line and winner of M(B) was ALEXSA ROSE. Second over the line was the winner of Class N, TAYLOR NICOLE, Frank Guptil of Friendship. Third over and second in Class M(B) was LOW BUDGET II Michael Jameson of Friendship.
Next up was the Fastest Friendship Lobster Boat Race and there were four boats on the line. With the drop of the flag TAYLOR NICOLE jumped into the lead and showed the way to the finish line. Next over was LOW BUDGET II and then MONICA ELAINE.
There were only three boats on the line for the Gasoline Free-for-All and no one was surprised to see FOOLISH PLEASURE leave everyone in her wake.
There were five boats entered in the Diesel Free-for-All and it was all BLUE EYED GIRL, closely followed by LA BELLA VITA.
There were just two entrants in Wooden Boat A and this was won by ROAR with CINDY JEN second.
The last race of the day was Fastest Lobster Boat and any betting person had all their money on BLUE EYED GIRL. Now on the line was FOOLISH PLEASURE and many of us wondered where she would finish. With the dropped of the flag BLUE EYED GIRL took the lead followed by LA BELLA VITA with FOOLISH PLEASURE right on her side, but just did not have enough to get by settling for third.
With half the racing season in the books the racing has been good, but we want more.