Monday, August 8, 2011

Early days at Brigantine Yacht Club

Back in the late '50s and early '60s I was racing an old Ventnor Moth and mostly stayed within the comfort zone of my own club's home waters.  One of the kids I raced against was Kenn Claus.  Kenn's half-brother Fred sent me some photos taken between the years 1959 and 1960.  Enjoy!

Here we see the original BYC club house.  This building was a former gas station building located at the south end of the island, near the lighthouse circle.  The club members bought it and had it moved to 10th Street and Bayshore Ave. in the late 1940s.  This photo pre-dates 1960 because that was the year when the "new" addition was added (look at the Yacht Club building in my opening post of last December to see the present structure).  The old gas station is still part of the building, it's just been cleverly added on to.
The houses,across the street, in the background, are still there but the one to the right has been enlarged over the years.  This photo also pre-dates the renovation of the club house and grounds.  Look at those mahogany speed boats!  The red burgee on the cross staff indicates the start of a race.
I  know that this photo is from the year 1960 because that was the first year I raced in a large invitational  regatta.  As a junior sailor I broke into racing within the safety of the waters of my home club and later, after gaining experience, started to travel to "away" regattas at other south Jersey clubs like Margate and Ocean City.  In this exposure I'm sailing my trusty old Ventnor, Nr 774 (using a sail from my other Ventnor, 764, which was in even worse shape). I called Nr 774 THE SIEVE, as in she leaked like one. Kenn Claus is sailing his brand new Titan design Moth, MISS AMERICA, Nr 1608.  Kenn's boat still survives.  The fate of poor old 774 is unknown.  As always, click on the photos to enlarge.
This photo was snapped just after the start of one of the races.  I'm several boats ahead of Kenn but he's upwind of me. Kenn didn't stay behind me very long.  The eventual winner of this regatta, George Kelly from Ocean City YC, can be seen almost falling out of his Abbot Moth INKY PINK, Nr 1593 (at the extreme right side of the picture).  In the background one can seen the Gerber brothers' sailing GEMINI, Nr 1540.  GEMINI is a Challenger design Moth.
Three Moths on a summer afternoon.  The boat closest to the camera is Kenn and probably Fred in CLIPPER, Nr 912.  CLIPPER was a Moyer design Moth.  The Moyer was very similar to the Ventnor and was probably a knock-off.  In the center,  Nr 505 was an old pre-war home-built Moth that John Walton redecked like an early Sailfish, ie: no cockpit; essentially a sailing surfboard.  The red and white Moth furthest away is a Ventnor.  This photo is also pre-1960 since Kenn is sailing his old boat.

No comments:

Post a Comment