Photo credit: Nora Feddal

Photo credit: Nora Feddal

What is the history of WOW/WAH and who are its past winners?

The Women on the Water Series began in the early 1970s with the “Ladies Got Guts Race” to the Isthmus at Catalina Island. Organized by Stan Lieberman and sponsored by Del Rey Yacht Club, the event was initiated to interest women in learning more about boat handling.

The enthusiasm of women for racing prompted other yacht clubs to sponsor their own “Women Only” events. These races became organized as a series in the late 1970s when then California Yacht Club Commodore Robert S. Wilson donated an antique silver loving cup to be awarded to the top woman sailor in Santa Monica Bay.

In 2002 WSA donated a crystal sailboat perpetual trophy for the winner of the WAH division with the most entries. In 2005 a Martin 242 half model perpetual trophy was dedicated in memory of Cheryl Rembert, an active Santa Monica Bay area sailor. The Cheryl Rembert Memorial Award is given to the top placing Martin 242 in the WOW division.

Past Winners of WOW

1980 Sparky Rome PMYC “Ya Turko”
1981 Fran Martin KHYC, Debbie Hunter “Grasshopper”
1982 Leslie Clark WYC, Windy Russell PMYC, Carol Robinson SBYRC “Catch 22”
1983 Fran Martin KHYC, Debbie Hunter “Hot Rum”
1984 Cheryl Mahaffey CYC, Erma Darling “Sundance”
1985 Carol Robinson SBYRC, Elise Anderson SBYRC, Leslie Clark WYC, “Wild Hare”
1986 Linda Straw WYC “Warthog”
1987 Cheryl Mahaffey CYC “California Girl”
1988 Kathy Patterson CYC, Cheryl Mahaffey “Fast Lane”
1989 Janet Klose WYC, Gillian Kerr SBYRC “Blade Runner”
1990 Janet Klose WYC, Gillian Kerr SBYRC “Blade Runner”
1991 Judith Endler SBYRC, E.J. Endler SMYC, Nancy Nelson, Reva Winkler, “Hard Habit”
1992 Judith Endler SBYRC, Nancy Nelson, Trish Copper, Barbara Myers, E.J. Endler “Blarney”
1994 Nadine Franczyk CYC “Fluid Ice”
1995 Liz Hjorth CYC “Velerito”
1997 Susan Beckett CYC “Absolute”
1998 Susan Beckett CYC “Absolute”
1999 Susan Beckett CYC “Absolute”
2000 Susie Taylor SBYRC “Take Five”
2001 Marylyn Hoenemeyer CYC-SBYRC “Blarney”
2002 Cheryl Pers Rembert CYC “Patience”
2003 Mary Kate Scott CYC “Mischief”
2004 Lisa Hackenberg SBYRC “Patience”
2005 Barbara Duker CYC “Velerito”
2006 Stine Cacavas WSA “Patience”
2007 Karyn Jones WSA/SCCYC “Patience”
2008 Mary Stuyvesant CYC “Open Fly”
2009 Barbara Duker CYC “305”
2010 Ann Chamberlin CYC “Goodbye Earl”
2011 Alice Leahey CYC “Grace O’Malley”
2012 Anne Popolizio Scuttlebutt Sailing Club “Bad Wolf”
2013 Jennifer Arrington WSA “Sandbox!”
2014 Barbara Duker CYC “305”
2015 Jessica Amen Richmond YC “All In”
2016 Marilyn Cassedy CYC “All In”
2017 Patricia Lapdula WSA “Sandbox”
2018 Julie Coll KHYC “Sails Coll”
2019 Mary Stuyvesant CYC “Groundhog Day”