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Originally delivered on 5/2/2024 10:13 am

SUBJECT: ISCA Windward Leg - April 2024

April 2024

Vicki Palmer, Windward Leg Editor


Major USSCA Announcement!

Sunfish Youth North Americans

61st Sunfish North Americans

USSCA Bylaws – Your Vote is Needed

USSCA Annual Meeting Reminder

Windward Leg Distribution Change

Introducing Code of Conduct Policy

Does Your Boat Measure Up?
 -- How Class Rules and Rule Changes Work
2:1 Mainsheet Video by Lee Monte

Southeast Regionals #1 Race Results

Windward Leg - Spanish Version

For publication in the Windward Leg, submit articles and photos to 

Announcing the USSCA President's Awards…
Call for Nominations!

 Dear USSCA Members,
We are thrilled to announce the inauguration of the new President's Awards. As stalwarts in the Sunfish sailing community, it is important that we recognize and appreciate the dedication, hard work and spirit of those among us who consistently bring their best to the USSCA and our beloved class.
The President's Awards will be distributed in three categories:

  • Member of the Year
  • Volunteer of the Year
  • Youth of the Year

These awards are intended to underscore the unique contributions made by our members, volunteers, and youthful talent who have not just participated actively, but also embodied the Sunfish spirit throughout the year.
We are commencing the nomination process as of today and sincerely encourage all of you to participate. This is an opportunity to bring to the forefront individuals who stand out due to their commitment, passion and contribution to the USSCA. Please, recognize your fellows, peers, or even yourself by submitting a nomination.
Nominations can be submitted before May 14th via the official form CLICK HERE.  More comprehensive information about the selection process and eligibility criteria can be found on our website USSCA President's Award.
Remember, these awards are a celebration of us, of our spirit, our progression, and our unity as a community. 
Looking forward to your active participation in the inaugural USSCA President’s Awards!

School is out … come sail with us!

The Sunfish Class is hosting a special sailing event just for sailors who are 19 years old or younger. Sunfish Youth North American Championship – June 10-11 – Lavallette, NJ; Register here: Sunfish Youth North American Championship (

A special event just for the Youth NAs ... an on-shore Sailing Clinic taught by Mike Ingham who is an awesome instructor and who also happens to be a champion sailor! After racing on Monday, June 10, be prepared to learn some sailing and rigging tips that will help you become the champion you want to be. 

What a great way to combine learning, fun and adventure! Deadline for early entry fee is May 17th. Sunfish Youth Scholarships are being offered to youth competitors for this event. Complete an application here: Sunfish Class Association - Youth Scholarship Application(deadline for the scholarship applications for this event is May 15th)

61st Sunfish North American Championship

Register here for June 12-15 Open North American Championship - Early entry fee ends on May 17th and last day to register is June 7th. REGISTRATION LINK

Please make sure your class membership is current for 2024. 

USSCA Bylaws - Your Vote is Needed

A committee worked hard to update the USSCA Bylaws that dated back to 2004 when bylaws, for example, did not allow for electronic voting for bylaw changes. Thus, you have to mail in your vote instead of scanning it and emailing it as an attachment.  This updated version of the Bylaws now allows for electronic voting. In short, the modernization of these Bylaws reflects the need to bring us up-to-date with current practices and technology. 

A copy of the revised Bylaws can be found here:  Sunfish Class Association - 2024 USSCA Bylaws Approval.

Please read them over and take the time to cast your vote … the U.S. Postal Service will deliver your signed ballot: the MAIL IN BALLOT PDF of USSCA BYLAWS 2024

USSCA Annual Meeting Reminder

June 14 at Lavallette Yacht Club in Lavallette, NJ – at the Sunfish North American Championship

Windward Leg Distribution Change

for USSCA Only 

We often hear the question "What do I get for being a PAID Class Member?" One answer has always been "the Windward Leg, of course!" So, when we thought about our automated monthly emails going to everyone in the database -- both USSCA members and USSCA non-members -- we decided that it made better business sense for PAID USSCA Class members to continue receiving the automated and complete version of each Windward Leg issue. Non-members of USSCA will begin receiving an abbreviated version of each issue with a link to where the complete Windward Leg issues are posted on the website: Sunfish Class Association - Windward Leg Newsletters. We’ll also include a Join the Class link for those who want their voice to be counted.

NICA members will continue receiving the automated, complete Windward Leg as always.

There is a significant importance to keep asking Sunfish sailors to join the Class. It's as much about the membership numbers as it is about being stronger financially. Any organization with larger membership numbers has more power; they are listened to, and they are taken more seriously. It's important that we grow the Sunfish Class to give us a bigger voice in the sailing community.  We've kept our membership dues as low as possible to help meet this strange, but true, organizational phenomenon.

With more non-members joining the Sunfish Class, our voice in the sailing community grows stronger.

Ethics and Code of Conduct Policy

ISCA_Ethics_and_Code_of_Conduct_11_26_23.pdf (

The Ethics and Code of Conduct Policy was presented and unanimously approved at the 2023 World Council meeting in Coconut Grove, FL. Why have one? It was important to our organization to have a policy that outlines our values, rules, standards and principles. It was also important to have one for insurance purposes. This same Ethics and Code of Conduct Policy will apply to all of ISCA that includes USSCA and NICA.


By John Butine, ISCA Chief Measurer

Vol 3

How Class rules and rule changes work

A couple of comments that I hear often are, “the rules don’t say I can’t do ___, so why can’t I?” and “I hear the Class approved ___, why can’t I sail with ___ yet?”   These are both very natural questions and hopefully this article will bring clarity to the answers.

The thing to know about the Sunfish Class Rules is that they are closed rules. Most classes of boats follow the closed rule format. The other type of class rules is called open rules. A couple of classes that follow the open rules format are the International 14, International Moth, and IMOCA. World Sailing defines closed class rules as follows: “Closed:  Class rules where anything not specifically permitted by the class rules is prohibited.”   This answers the first question at the beginning of the article. If a rule does not say you can do ___, then you cannot.

The second common question will take a little bit more explanation. Any change to the rules starts with a sailor’s idea. A sailor should submit their idea to one of the Technical Committee members (link:  The idea should include a description of the idea, why it would benefit the Class, and photos certainly help. The committee reviews proposed rules at a minimum of once a year during the ISCA World Championships. Each potential change is reviewed and discussed using the following criteria:

  1. What problem does the rule change solve?How serious or widespread is the problem?
  2. Expense. If it is an expensive change, how sure are we that the change solves the problem?
  3. One-design consideration. Does the change make the boat less one-design?
  4. What level of sailor benefits?Does the change make the boat better for all levels of sailors or only those at the top of the fleet?
  5. Do-it-yourself consideration.Is the change something that anyone could do, or are unique skills or tools required to achieve it?
  6. Impact of the change.Would the change make a meaningful difference, or is just another way of doing something that already works?

If the Technical Committee approves an idea as a change or addition to the rules, it goes to the ISCA World Council for approval. Given that the World Council approves the Technical Committee recommendation, the rule change does not go into effect immediately! All rule changes are submitted to World Sailing for approval, and when that approval occurs, then the change can be published into the Class Rules. While this seems like a lot of work for a rule change to go into effect, the Sunfish Class is not alone in this process. All World Sailing recognized classes follow this general format.

A Class Approved Rigging that Sunfish Sailors are Excited About

2:1 Mainsheet Video by Lee Montes

Savannah Yacht Club Sunfish SE Regional Championship

Savannah Yacht Club | April 26-28, 2024

Submitted by Steve Honour

Southern hospitality shone brightly at the Savannah Yacht Club for the SE Regionals. They rolled out the red carpet for 36 Sunfish sailors who came from Florida, Georgia, North and South Carolina, New Jersey and even New York. Arriving sailors were greeted by SYC members who did everything possible to make all feel not only welcome but as if they had found a new home. Boats were unloaded, campers were given help setting up, doors were opened, hands were shook, and smiles shared. And WOW. What a club! SYC is a sparkling jewel with a huge campus beautifully situated amid majestic oaks draped with uniquely southern Spanish Moss, an unmatched unique picturesque setting on the Wilmington River; like it fell right out of a book.

The gathered throng of excited sailors were well fed. SYC made sure nobody went hungry or thirsty at any time. Friday night featured a hearty quick meal of chef quality melt-in-your-mouth chicken tenders with scrumptious dipping sauces and beer as local Shane McCarthy and Charlie Usher conducted a 'chalk talk' explaining the peculiarities of the significant Wilmington River tidal currents. 

Saturday's racing began with strong shifty breezes keeping sailors on their toes and later built to near survival sailing with gusts over 30 mph. As a light sailor, I was darn glad I had been experimenting with a reefing system to pull the Cunningham all the way down to the tack. I used it and it worked! There were many capsizes. People got hung up on marks in the tide. The relentless tide also carried several boats over the starting line early which did not go unnoticed by sharp-as-nails RC PRO Martin Zurinskas who diligently DSQ'd any boats falling prey to the formidable tide.

Waiting for the Seabreeze to fill

On time start Saturday am

Every start was tight with the tricky current

Hal Gilreath, consistently and conservatively started mid-line playing the demanding shifts and the tide well to rack up an impressive lead by the end of Saturday. I was sitting tenuously in 2nd by just one point over SYC's own Charlie Usher, but with drop races counted Mary Ellen Brown was in 2nd. Hal appeared ready to run away with the win, but 2nd place was up for grabs. 

The Saturday dinner was supreme. A local musician entertained us with fine music. The Savannah Yacht Club is a fantastic place for Sunfish sailing with first rate facilities. Forget dealing with sand in the cockpit. A ramp leads down from the clean set up area to a floating launch pad and convenient floating docks. Helpers organized all the dollies to make launching and retrieval a snap. This is one club you will be glad to include in your racing schedule if at all possible.

Sunday's forecast was for lighter winds and the morning tide was opposite creating a completely different racing challenge. I correctly guessed the current would make hovering on the line impossible, opening up a hole at the RC boat, allowing me to swoop in at the last instant for a beautiful start. I tacked away to head for the lesser tide and hopefully right-shifting wind. That paid off beautifully resulting in my first and only win. 

The crafty wind piped up again and began oscillating, foiling a repeat of my strategy. Hal's conservative sailing kept him at or near the top in every race. Local Shane McCarthy found his groove on Sunday, winning three races to surpass my overall score by one point. Way to go, Shane! Hal Gilreath took 1st and Top Grand Master showing us how it was done. Shane showed us the value of strong sailing and local knowledge to take 2nd place; I managed to put some of my recent training at SSS Fleet 154 to good use to take 3rd and top Great Grand Master; 4th place and Top Female went to Mary Ellen Brown, and Top Youth went to Jonathan Clubbs of ETYSC/ BSC, who also took 11th place overall. Local Lamar Davis won the Oldest Competitor award.

 It was love at first sight on both the parts of the visiting Sunfish Sailors and Savannah Yacht Club to have such vibrant activity gracing their beautiful club. Keep this one tucked in your want-to-do list. I have a feeling SYC will be hosting more great regattas. The next one is the Firecracker Regatta, June 29-30. Don't miss it!

Leeward Gate Mark, Day 1

Award Winners:

1st -- Hal Gilreath – Top Grand Master (FYC)

2nd – Shane McCarthy (SYC)

3rd  - Steve Honour, Top Great Grand Master (BCYX/SSS)

4th -- Mary Ellen Brown, Top Female (SSS/RYC)

John Butine, Top Master (8th overall) (LNYC)

Jonathan Clubbs, Top Youth (11th overall) (ETYSA/BSC)

Lamar Davis, Oldest Competitor (SYC)

(L to R) 1st Row – Steve Honour (3rd overall & Great Grand Master), Jonathan Clubbs (Top Youth, 11th overall), Mary Ellen Brown (Top Female, 4th overall).  2nd Row – Shane McCarthy (2nd overall), Hal Gilreath (1st overall & Top Grand Master), John Butine (Top Master, 8th overall). In the back row peeking over the shoulders of Shane and Hal is Lamar Davis who won the Oldest Participant Award and who also shared a wonderful Savannah Yacht Club (SYC) history of Sunfish sailing at SYC with the folks at this event.

Series Standing - 9 races scored

Pos,Sail, Skipper, Yacht Club, Results, Total Points
1. 76188, Hal Gilreath, Florida, 1-4-3-1-2-3-3-3-[37/OCS]- ; 20   
2. 81422, SHANE MCCARTHY, SYC, [17]-14-1-4-13-1-8-1-1- ; 43   
3. 176, Steve Honour, Boca Ciega Yacht Club / SSS, 2-3-[12]-10-1-10-2-6-10- ; 44   
4. 81135, Mary Ellen Brown, SSS & RCC, 8-1-4-[37/RET]-3-6-12-8-12- ; 54   
5. 4736, Bob Slook, Oriental Dinghy Club, 15-7-5-12-[21]-8-9-4-8- ; 68   
6. 2311, Parshall, Csc, [37/OCS]-12-2-5-5-13-17-2-13- ; 69   
7. 81813, Christopher Schreiber, None, 3-9-9-13-10-[14]-14-11-3- ; 72   
8. 50493, John Butine, Lake Norman YC, 6-2-23-[37/RET]-18-2-13-5-5- ; 74T   
9. 37630, Betsy Davis, Lavallette Yacht Club, 11-[37/OCS]-14-8-8-15-4-10-4- ; 74T   
10. 10164, Lisa Brown Ehrhart, Lisa Brwon Ehrhart, 7-10-17-7-4-[25]-21-12-2- ; 80   
11. 81830, Jonathan Clubbs, ETYSA/BSC, 12-11-13-18-[20]-11-1-17-6- ; 89T   
12. 5259, Bill Swanson, Halifax Sailing Assoc, 14-13-6-9-17-17-6-7-[19]- ; 89T   
13. 81874, Don Packard, Epping Forest YC, 20-8-[22]-6-6-20-19-13-7- ; 99   
14. 81805, Jude Brown, BSC, 16-5-20-[37/DNS]-11-7-10-15-22- ; 106   
15. 60075, Whit Davis, Savannah Yacht Club, 18-[37/RET]-8-3-16-16-15-18-14- ; 108   
16. 4406, Dylan Barbour, Oriental Dinghy Club, 13-[37/OCS]-18-16-7-12-20-16-9- ; 111   
17. 70572, Benjamin Buck Simons, Columbia Sailing Club, [37/OCS]-37/OCS-11-11-14-9-5-9-16- ; 112   
18. 81526, David Krausz, Columbia Sailing Club, 5-17-15-19-[23]-19-11-14-15- ; 115   
19. 1524, Jeff Goff, Musket Cove/ Charlevoix, [37/OCS]-16-7-37/NSC-19-4-7-22-11- ; 123   
20. 5266, Ben Williams, Oriental Dinghy Club, 4-25-[37/RET]-15-28-5-16-28-25- ; 146   
21. 81492, Scott Elliott, Lake Gaston Sailing, 9-20-[37/RET]-14-24-21-25-20-18- ; 151   
22. 8083, Clay Mobley, SYC, [37/RET]-15-26-20-22-18-18-19-23- ; 161   
23. 1202, Charlie Usher, Savannah Yacht Club, 10-6-10-2-25-[37/RET]-37/RET-37/RET-37/RET- ; 164   
24. 77897, Susan Mallows, SSS/LYC, 24-19-25-[37/DNS]-9-23-24-21-21- ; 166   
25. 6227, Holden Haenel, Savannah Yacht Club, 25-21-16-17-[27]-27-27-27-17- ; 177   
26. 5785, Lee Parks, Sarasota Sailing Squadron & Newport YC, 21-22-[37/RET]-37/DNS-15-26-23-25-20- ; 189   
27. 5081, Payton Brown, Savannah Yacht Club, 23-23-[37/RET]-37/DNS-26-22-26-23-26- ; 206   
28. 76274, Wes Barbour, Oriental Dinghy Club, 27-24-24-[37/RET]-32-29-29-24-24- ; 213   
29. 43, Peter Fraker, South Bay Watersports Center, 22-[37/RET]-37/DNS-37/DNS-12-24-22-26-37/RET- ; 217T   
30. 81173, Mark Evans, LNYC, 26-18-21-[37/RET]-30-28-28-29-37/RET- ; 217T   
31. 49214, Richard Prieto, Menantic YC, SSS, 19-[37/OCS]-19-37/DNF-37/RET-37/RET-37/RET-37/RET-37/RET- ; 260   
32. 5029, Julia Ball, Savannah Yacht Club, [37/RET]-37/DNS-37/NSC-37/DNS-29-30-30-37/RET-37/RET- ; 274   
33. 5290, Deb Aronson, Oriental dinghy club, [37/RET]-37/DNS-37/DNS-37/DNS-31-37/RET-BF-31-37/RET-37/RET- ; 284   
34. 88552, ROSEMARY MCMULLEN, Sarasota Sailing Squadron, [37/RET]-37/DNS-37/DNS-37/DNS-33-31-37/RET-37/RET-37/RET- ; 286   
35. 51814, Lamar Davis, none, [37/DNS]-37/DNS-37/DNS-37/DNS-37/RET-37/RET-37/RET-37/RET-37/RET- ; 296T   
36. 1001, Frank Peluso, Savannah YAcht Club, [37/DNS]-37/DNS-37/DNS-37/DNS-37/DNS-37/NSC-37/NSC-37/RET-BF-37/RET- ; 296T   

We had excellent everything at the SE Regionals last weekend at the Savannah Yacht Club. PRO Martine, super conditions, over 30 boats (yay Floridians for coming north), excellent hospitality from the club, and challenging tidal conditions which were shared cheerfully by the locals Shane McCarthy and Charlie Usher - a race course on a tidal river, intersected by a 2nd tidal river,  with both ebb and flood tides during the racing. 

Congrats to Hal Gilreath for prevailing in all conditions!  And to all the other sailors who hit or capsized at marks (or finish lines), and managed to keep going.  They also had some of the best photography I’ve ever seen, and I would love to get a hold of some of those photos. Posted on FB by Elaine Parshall

Mistaken Identity in Previous Issue

To make sure our three active Youth sailors from North Carolina are correctly identified, one of the Mom’s (Rebekah Clubbs) sent me a photo with all three so that I can correct my faux pas in one fell swoop. I had Dylan identified as Wes in one photo. My bad. My apologies.

(L to R) Dylan Barbour, Jonathan Clubbs, Wesley Barbour

To avoid an issue over-crowded with events that have been published before, some several times, go to the Regatta Schedule to look for events such as the Harkers Island Race on July 20, many Regional world-qualifying events in September and one Regional scheduled in November. Of course, the Sunfish World Championship is the big event for October!

Calendar Submissions

2024 Calendar is ready for your events. Please email your regional events to your Regional Representative or the Scheduling Coordinator Full calendar of events can be found at the Calendar

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