Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Bill Boyle's Cates: Sea Isle City daze...

Both Bill and I cut our Moth Boat racing teeth with leaky old Ventnor Moths.  We both graduated to new boats after our respective skills improved.  And again, we both moved up to Cates Florida-design boats.  I bought mine from George Szabo, a Cooper River Yacht Club racer who built a couple boats each winter, one for himself and the other for speculation.  I bought Nr 2249 from George S. in 1962.  Bill, on the other hand, teamed up with the Patterson family, down at Sea Isle City, and built his own boat.  That boat is the subject of today's post.

Bill Boyle in his Patterson-Cates in 1965.  The Sea Isle City, New Jersey back bay marsh can be seen in the background.  The Patterson clan modified the Cates design by converting the originally designed hollow bow sections to the faster convex or "full" bow shape.  The modification produced a slightly faster, but much wetter boat (note the presence of the larger than usual splash boards just ahead of the mast).  The rectangular window in the sail and the rakish, stylized sail numbers were a signature mark of Bob Seidelmann's sail loft. Located in Westmont, NJ,  Seidelmann Sails made most of the sails used by south Jersey racers in the early to mid 1960s.

A year later, 1966.  Here we see Bill (shirt tail hanging out) and Erik Illenberger standing by Bill's boat on the beach next to the Sea Isle City Yacht Club. The mast in the foreground belongs to Erik's boat.  Bob Patterson's cousin, Lynne Berlinger, can be seen wading ashore in the background.  This was Bill's last year of Moth racing.  The following year he sold the boat and went surfing.  He's returned to racing Moths, but he still has an Oceanside Instrument surf board hanging up in the shed to remind him of the old days.
Here's a recent photo of Bill back sailing an old Ventnor Moth which he restored a year or so ago.  He calls the boat "Last One" not because it's his last boat but rather this is probably the last Moth to  come out of the old Ventnor Boat Works.  Bill is also working on an old Fletcher-Cates for his son Shane.  The more we change, the more we stay the same!

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