Stonington lobster boat racing draws fleet of 109

Stonington hosted race number 7 in the 2019 Maine Lobster Boat Racing circuit this past Sunday, with 109 boats showing up.

An unusual entry was Devin Bray’s Sarah Christina in Class C (Inboards, outboards or outdrives, 90 hp and over). That’s a recently launched 34 Libby from East Side Boat Shop with a single 430-hp 5.7-liter V-8 outboard mounted on the transom. It’s the only Libby lobster boat ever built with an outboard and probably the only lobster boat of that size powered by an outboard. The Sarah Christina took second to Caleb Norton’s White Lightnin’, an AJ28 with a 305-hp Cummins, which registered 39.3 mph at the finish line.

The fourth race of the day was the John’s Bay Boat Co. Race, an event that only takes place in Stonington. It features wooden lobster boats built by John’s Bay Boat Co. that fish out of the lobster capital of Maine. Five boats went to the line. The winner was Nathan Jones’ Sailor’s Way. Sailor’s Way’s 1,000-hp C18 Cat got her across the line at 27.6 mph.

Jeremy Beal’s Maria’s Nightmare, a Mussel Ridge 28 with a 2,500-hp Chevy, was the focus of attention a week earlier when she beat Cameron Crawford’s Wild Wild West at Moosabec Reach, but Maria’s Nightmare didn’t make it to Stonington, which meant that Wild Wild West, a West 28 with a 1,050-hp Isotta, took the Diesel Free For All at 53.6 mph and the last race of the day, the Fastest Lobster Boat Afloat, at 53.4 mph. Tom Clemons’ Motivation, a Northern Bay 36, with a 1,000-hp Cat was second in both races.

Among the prizes given out were four Nascar tickets from Maine Coastal News and a voucher for a round-trip airline ticket from Elite Airlines, which flies from Portland, Maine, to several locations in Florida. The rumor going around is that at the Winter Harbor lobster boat races, which will be on Aug. 10, a Mitchell Cove 35 hull will be one of the prizes.

The next race is July 7 in Friendship. After that, five races remain.

About the author

Kirk Moore

Associate Editor Kirk Moore was a reporter for the Asbury Park Press for over 30 years before joining WorkBoat in 2015. He wrote several award-winning stories on marine, environmental, coastal and military issues that helped drive federal and state government policy changes. He has also been a field editor for WorkBoat’s sister publication, National Fisherman, for almost 25 years. Moore was awarded the Online News Association 2011 Knight Award for Public Service for the “Barnegat Bay Under Stress,” 2010 series that led to the New Jersey state government’s restoration plan. He lives in West Creek, N.J.

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