Artists of the wind

A sailor is an artist whose medium is the wind.  Webb Chiles

I grabbed this shot of the Canadian team as they whooshed by our sailboat in the Dinner Key mooring field. It was taken two years ago on our last cruise from Stuart to the Florida Keys.

It was early and I had just woken up. I emerged bleary-eyed and caffeine-deprived from the cabin to the cockpit, thinking about pancakes. Its a good thing I was fully clothed though, because all of a sudden scores of racing dinghies surrounded us, and they were very, very close.

These skilled sailors — artists of the wind — sliced their way through the corridors between the moored sailboats at top speed without hitting anybody. They were heading out into Biscayne Bay to compete in the Star Class race of the Bacardi Cup during Miami Sailing Week, an annual event.

As they flew by, many called out good morning. I managed to regain my senses quickly enough to pick up my camera and get some shots while calling out to wish them good luck in the race (especially the Canadians!).

Memories of that day came flooding back when we heard that several of the tanned and strapping men that have been staying here at the Commodore Inn had won places in the Star Class race in this year’s cup.

Here’s one of the winners Mateusz Kusznierewicz of Poland posing with Maggie, manager of the inn. She is a real sailing nut and a sponsor of most of the sailing regattas that occur every year from November through May. She maintains a hall of fame in her office with pictures of regatta participants and their trophies.

Here are winners Mateusz Kusznierewicz and Dominik Zycki of Poland in action taken by sailing photographer Onne van der Wal. What a shot!

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