HOOD RIVER — The winds were rippin’ last weekend at the Event Site as Dale Cook barely surpassed his rival and sailing buddy Bruce Peterson to win the 2002 Gorge Cup.
Cook won the first three races and totaled 4.25 points, while Peterson took the final two races and finished second the rest of the way to give him 5.5 points and a first place in the Formula Masters division.
Steve Sylvester finished second in the Masters division and third overall with 11 points, and Andreas Macke took second in Formula and fourth overall with 17 points. Chenda Herstus and David Kashy rounded out the top five with 23 points apiece.
In the junior division, local racers Bryan Metcalf-Perez and Sean Ritter tied for the title, each with one win and 9.75 points. Cheyne Swick wasn’t far behind with 10 points, while Kiernan Devanney took fourth with 11.25 points.
Other local juniors competing over the weekend were Andy Crafis, Ben Albright, Matt Albright, Collin Swick and Tad Wenzel.
The 2002 Gorge Cup marked the first time a team of local junior racers had been organized since the mid-’90s, when Rhonda Smith and Scott Sanchez sponsored a team.
Race director Darren Rogers received 10 Bic Techno Formula boards from Adventure Sports of Miami, Fla., and offered the juniors a chance to compete in the Gorge Cup for free.
“We really wanted to kick off the junior windsurfing program again, and so we gave the kids the boards and let them compete for free,” Rogers said.
“Some of them started off slow, but by the end of the day, they were locked and loaded, and hanging with the big boys.”
Jak Wilberscheid of Hood River WaterPlay was integral in organizing the junior team and he and Rogers hope the Gorge Cup is only the beginning of a burgeoning local youth program.