In fact, the crew used this race as a tune up for the upcoming
Transpac race to Hawaii, which after this year the Ragtime will have
sailed more times than any other vessel in history.
In the cruising class, a revamped 42-foot Catalina named Pikake was
the first to cross in its class, but the all ex-military aviator crew's
jubilant celebration was cut short when their skipper and friend Clyde
Childress had to be rushed to the hospital Saturday just after noon.
Crew members said that he suffers from back troubles and may have
mixed his medications.
Crews from all 26 classes continued to trickle in all day Saturday and
were expected to continue coming in as late as Sunday morning.
The grand tradition of the race continued after the boats were docked,
with celebrations and the many philanthropic aspects of the race.
The race began back in 1947, when members of the Newport Ocean Sailing
Assn. decided they wanted to organize a small event for sailors returning
from the battles of World War II. The fun little stint they had planned
for April 23, 1948, which they expected might draw 30 skippers, instead
drew 117 ships.