The Neil Pryde was the first event of the 24th annual Maui Race Series. The event was a fundraiser for Mizue Ramos, a Neil Pryde employee who is battling cancer.
Ironically, it is a race McGain didn’t win that competitors were talking about.
At the start of the fourth heat, McGain and Mike Yasak, an 18-year series veteran, were sailing out to the start boat. McGain and Yasak collided, with Yasak sustaining a double fracture on his right lower leg.
“We were just waiting for the (start) flag to go up,” McGain said. “You keep bearing off, and he’s bearing off, too. You accelerate and you don’t have a chance to do anything and you reach a point of no return.
“I think I hit him below the knee, pretty much broke his leg right there. I went flying over the top of his equipment and came out of my harness. He came up and screamed, ‘I’ve got a broken leg.’ ’’
McGain sailed to the beach to alert Jay Sniffen, an off-duty fireman. When Sniffen reached him on his personal watercraft, Yasak was surrounded by other competitors.
“He was floating, holding on to his board,” Sniffen said. “He pulled himself up on the sled, and when I brought him in, I was looking for Dr. (Ben) Massenburg.”
Ben Massenburg, an emergency room doctor and racer, and Paula Lenny, a Kaiser doctor and mother of one of the competitors, helped him before lifeguards and EMTs arrived.
The race was halted for
30 minutes while Yasak was being treated.
McGain estimated he and Yasak were traveling about 30 miles per hour.
“It was probably the scariest collision I’ve had in 30 years of racing. It’s one of those unfortunate accidents,” he said.
In one of the closest races of the day, Jake Golm won a tie-breaker to edge Kai Lenny in the junior men. Each had two wins, a second-place finish, and a disqualification. Golm had a DQ in the first heat, Lenny in the final heat. All Lenny had to do was finish the last race and not be penalized. Neither competitor knew the score before their final heat.
“I didn’t know, I was going full speed, just trying to win,” Golm said. “I’m really lucky today.”
Golm also edged veteran Karla Aguera to win the expert class. Golm was the only double winner.
Aguera won four consecutive heats to win the women’s division. Her husband, Alex, did the same in winning the 40-49 age group.
Other winners included Peter Slate (19-39), Ted Hunter (50 and over), Kizmet Kilbourn (junior women), Eyal Shelef (waveboard), Szabolcs Maguranyi (semipro), and Neil Turpin (advanced).
Baker Grant passes the buoy first in a junior men’s heat, followed by Jake Golm and Conner Baxter. Golm went on to win the division.
Harry Wiewel photo
Fact BoxSaturday’s Results At Kanaha Beach Park
Men’s 19-39—1. Peter Slate, 2. James Dinnis, 3. Peter Bijl, 4. Mark Boersma, 5. Andres Martinez, 6. Tatsunaori Yanagawa, 7. Neil Turpin, 8. John Smalley, 9. Brad Walker, 10. Brycen Anderson.
Men’s 40-49—1. Alex Aguera, 2. Elon Wong, 3. Kevin Ozee, 4. Matt Daniells 14, 5. Bobby Reader, 6. Mark Nelson.
Men’s 50 and over—1. Ted Hunter, 2. Ben Massenburg, 3. Szabolcs Maguranyi, 4. Todd MacFarlane, 5. Wayne Bowness, 6. Dick Ashenfelter, 7. Dave Dalgetty.
Women’s Open—1. Karla Aguera, 2. Ashley Baxter, 3. Juliana Gomes de Farias, 4. Tammy Bockius, 5. Tatiana Howard, 6. Sue Bradley.
Junior Women—1. Kizmet Kilbourn, 2. Juliana Gomes de Farias, 3. Paulina Pease.
Junior Men—1. Jake Golm, 2. Kai Lenny, 3. Zane Schweitzer, 4. Baker Grant, 5. Bernd Roediger, 6. Deniz Bicakci.
Wave Board—1. Eyal Shelef, 2. Olaf Sutor, 3. Meurisse, 4. Tracey Harrap, 5. Tatiana Howard, 6. Juliana Gomes de Farias, 7. Ashley Baxter.
Pro—1. Phil McGain, 2. Peter Bijl, 3. Alex Aguera, 4. Mike Yasak, 5. Kevin Ozee, 6. Elon Wong, 7. Mark Boersma, 8. James Dinnis, 9. Tatsunori Yanagawa, 10. Todd MacFarlane, 11. Jacques Pauvert, 12. Mark Nelson, 13. Peter Slate.
Semipro—1. Szabolcs Maguranyi, 2. Andres Martinez, 3. Ben Massenburg, 4. Kai Lenny, 5. Troy Anderson, 6. Bobby Reader, 7. John Smalley, 8. Ted Hunter, 9. Matt Daniells, 10. Wayne Bowness, 11. Bernd Rodiger, 12. Marc Lefebvre.
Expert—1. Jake Golm, 2. Karla Aguera, 3. Baker Grant, 4. Conner Baxter, 5. Zane Schweitzer, 6. Dick Ashenfelter.
Advanced—1. Neil Turpin, 2. Brad Walker, 3. Paulina Pease, 4. Bryan Anderson.