Luffing Lassies: A Breezy Winter

Lassies Launching

Lassies Launching

After a Fall Series that tested our ability to sail in light winds, the Luffing Lassies enjoyed a fantastic wind filled Winter Series.  Those pesky gusts tested our determination, courage and ability to stay upright on the water (at least we are now proficient in righting our boats.)  Highlights included:

Winter Series Results

Our Pram Lassies proved it is a fight to the finish as scoring was very tight.  Penny Durham captured 1st followed by Marlea Hughes 2nd, Maria Friedli 3rd and Kathy Seiders 4th.  Congratulations Lassies on how much your sailing skills have improved since the Fall Series.

The highly competitive Sunfish class is divided into 3 groups based on years of sailing experience. Super Salt winners were: #1 Fran Mericle, #2 Dottie Shell and #3 Rita Steele. Winners in the Salt category were: #1 Jo Dzina, #2 Lisa Dodds and #3 Daryl Lamb. The Luffers group winners were: #1 Linda Tiffan, #2 Pat Comstock and #3 Gail Seidman.  Congratulations Lassies.

The Winter Series marked the inaugural season of 420 racing for the Lassies.  We appreciate the assistance and flexibility of our Starboard Studs Racing Committee and all our Lassies for accommodating the change to our routine.  And, we could not have enjoyed this new fleet without the generosity of David Livingston and the Sarasota Youth Sailing Program for allowing us to use the 420s.  Our 420 Lassies battled it out on the water to a close finish. Michelle Lee and Julie Forbes Burnett tied for 1st followed by Lorri Kaighin in 3rd.


The Luffing Lassies always appreciate a chance to travel and test our sailing prowess in unfamiliar waters.  This winter was no exception as several Lassies put miles on their cars.  February 21st dawned with Brenda Scanlon and Julie Forbes Burnett heading to Bow Chasers in Clearwater for a fantastic day of pram sailing.  On February 28th, the Salty Sisters in St. Pete hosted a pram and sunfish interclub.  Gail Seidman represented the Lassies in prams while Lisa Dodds, Loretta Garber, Nanette Reuss, Dottie Schell and Linda Schwartz sailed sunfish.  The Lassies swept the sunfish class with Linda Schwartz 1st, Nanette Reuss 2nd and Loretta Garber 3rd.  Go Lassies!

On March 1st Penny Durham and Marlea Hughes went to the T.I. Tackers in Treasure Island for a great day of pram sailing.  Our last interclub is coming up in May, so look forward to the results.  Thank you to all the Lassies who travel in support of our club and extend the network of talented women sailors in Florida.


In true Lassie style, we cannot end a sailing series without a party.  Thank you to host Nanette Reuss for a fantastic night on March 15 celebrating all the Lassie accomplishments in the Winter Series.  And thank you to the countless volunteers who helped make this a great evening.

In addition to the awards ceremony, the other highlight of the evening was a photo presentation by one of our Starboard Studs Chuck Comstock. It has been posted on YouTube and can be viewed here

The video captures the beauty, the challenge and the fun of our winter sailing/racing season. Take a look and see what’s going on out there in the bay every Thursday. You’ll be amazed!

Rainbow Regatta

The Luffing Lassies are pleased to host the upcoming Rainbow Regatta on Monday April 16 (rain date April 17).  The Rainbow Regatta is an FWSA sponsored event in which all member clubs from up and down Florida’s west coast compete. Over 80 boats are expected to enter the regatta this year. Featuring pram, opti and sunfish fleets, the Rainbow Regatta promises to be a great day on the water.

Fun "Race" Around Lido

Plan ahead and mark your calendars for Monday May 28th for the ever popular Memorial Day "Race" Around Lido which this year will be hosted by the Luffing Lassies. This fun family affair can be enjoyed as a sailor or spectator. It includes activities on the water and on land. All size sailboats, kayaks, canoes, wind surfers and paddle boards are welcome to participate. Come for the boating, games, food, drinks, T-shirts and prizes. Watch the Burgee and Breezy Blast for more details.

We leave you with a refrain from the Ode to the Luffing Lassies:

Oh, I am a proud Luffing Lassie
I’m bold and I’m brave and I’m sassy
From the Gulf to the Bay
I could sail here all day
And never wear out this old chassis!

Diane Banyard and Linda Tiffan

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