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Key West- Day 4

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With four days of racing complete, it is not difficult to identify the stars of Quantum Key West 2013: The sun and the wind!  Even the most veteran sailors have been amazed by the fact every day of the regatta has brought spectacular conditions with warm temperatures and solid breezes. Wednesday brought 18-22 knot winds and Thursday’s breeze held steady between 14-18 knots.

“We’ve had an incredible string of great sailing days. I think that is really the story,” said Jonathan McKee, a tactician from Seattle, Washington. “We keep waiting for a crappy day and it just hasn’t happened. We’ve just been really lucky that each day has been spectacular.”  That good fortune is expected to continue on Friday as George Caras of Commanders’ Weather is forecasting winds in the 12-18 knot range and more sunny skies. George Collins was once a regular competitor at Key West, but hasn’t attended for many years. The 72-year-old skipper was equally amazed by the caliber of sailing throughout the week.  “What another beautiful day of racing,” Collins said upon returning to the dock in front of the Half Shell Raw Bar. “I can’t remember a week that had such consistently good breeze. There are usually one or two light days, but not this week. The Key West Chamber of Commerce gets five stars.”

Event chairman Peter Craig and his Premiere Racing team take pride in giving sailors a full week of action. Over the past 20 years, the annual regatta off the Florida Keys has lost just six days of racing. For any regatta organizer, that's an astonishing statistic! Barring some unforeseen situation, this will be another year that Premiere Racing has completed the target number of 10 races. More remarkable is that Division 2, under the direction of principal race officer Dave Brennan, is likely to get in 12 races for the J/70 fleet.

North Sails pro Tim Healy and his team on HELLY HANSEN seized the lead in J/70 class, largest of the regatta with 39 boats. Geoff Becker is calling tactics for Healy (Newport, RI), who posted a first and second in three races on Thursday and leads SAVASANA (Brian Keane, Weston, MA) by two points.  Just behind them is the Loring/ Pasquinelli team sailing STAMPEDE.  In the J/70 Corinthian Division, it's a serious three-horse race.  Brothers Blake & Lud Kimbrough from Newport, RI are ahead by one point over Brian Elliot and David Hyer on B-SQUARED.  Lying in third is Dave Franzel on SPRING just one point further back sailing SPRING.  
 

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