Aussie takes gold at Nationals

Australia native Phil McGain ran away with the Open Men's division at the U.S. Windsurfing Nationals, taking the national championship trophy for the second straight year.

McGain totaled a microscopic 6.5 points in nine course races Tuesday and Thursday at the Hood River Event Site -- 35.5 points ahead of local favorite Dale Cook, who tallied 42 points for second place. (Similar to golf, the lowest point total wins.)

Bill Weir took third place with 57 points, barely outdistancing another local windsurfing icon, Bruce Peterson, who had 63 points.

Micah Buzianuis matched McGain's dominance in the Formula competition, taking the title with an equally miniscule 12.25 points. Formula racing differs from Open because participants are limited to only three sails throughout the competition, while Open competitors have no limitations on sails or boards.

Buzianuis also won the annual sportsmanship award, given to the class winner who most exemplifies the competitive spirit of windsurfing.

His concise yet inspirational speech concluded the awards banquet Saturday night, and left everyone in attendance with good memories from this year's competition, and a positive outlook for the 2002 Nationals in Corpus Christi, Texas.

Long-time windsurfing innovator Jimmy Diaz sailed off with second place in Formula after holding off yet another Hood River favorite, Matt Pritchard, by only three points.

Five additional Formula classes competed at this year's Nationals, making Formula by far the most popular racing category. Platt Johnson won the Formula Grand Masters, followed by Guy Miller and Brian Schurton.

Local racer Bob Bauld won the Junior Grand Masters, with Vlad Moroz and Alan Prucsia finishing close behind. Jon Davies won the Masters title, holding off Jamie Torres and Adrianno Azovedo. Al Simmons won the Senior Grand Masters, followed by David Hop and Jan Hoogland. Finally, Charles Allen ran away with the Formula Senior class with 70 points.

In the Techo class -- a new racing class characterized by a uniform board size and smaller sails -- Skip Johnson took top honors, beating out Hood River local Will Harper, who introduced Techno racing to the area. Austin Topolnicki finished third.

In other racing classes, local windsurfers Nancy Johnson and Shelley Gimbal finished one-two in the Open Women's competition; Alex Aguera outlasted Mike Zajicek for first place in the Open Masters division; Don Wagner won the Open Grand Masters; Dick Tillman won the Prodigy competition -- the board currently sanctioned by the Olympics; Kieran Devanney dominated the Junior class; and Vojta Cervenka won the Imco class.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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