The following Story - Back to the Mack- ran in the July 2013 Issue of Beneteau Horizons.
Back to the Mack
With the start of the Chicago Yacht Club's 105th Race To Mackinac Friday, July 12, a grueling 289.4 nautical mile race from just off Navy Pier in Chicago, Illinois to Mackinac Island, Michigan, we sat down with Beneteau owner Emmy Gallagher as she prepares to join her husband Matt and four other crew aboard their Beneteau 37, Endeavour, for the race.
Emmy has been sailing the waters around Chicago since she was a child. Later, after relocating to the Chesapeake Bay area, she became involved in racing. While Emmy wouldn't describe her husband Matt as an "outdoorsman type," his need for speed paired with her love of sailing was the perfect match to fuel the couple's passion for sailboat racing.
Since returning to Chicago and starting a family together (Charlie is age 5 1/2, and Maggie is age 3 1/2), the Gallagher's are familiar faces within the Chicago Yacht Club's racing community. Emmy explained, "We live near Wrigley Field where it's just a short five-minute car ride to the dock. The Wednesday night beer can races are great for our family, and the kids love it!"
This is Matt and Emmy's third entry into the Race To Mackinac. "We're racing with the same crew from last year. They're a great group of guys with a good blend of experience and strength," she said.
When asked why they train for the race, Emmy told us, "The Mack is awesome. We don't do it to win necessarily, but more to participate and have fun. We just want everyone to make it over the line safely."
Curious as to what led to the Gallagher's decision to purchase their Beneteau 37, Emmy recalled, "I've been on many types of boats through the years, and Matt did a lot of research. We considered the Beneteau 34, but the 37 is the perfect size for our family. It's manageable, easy to sail singlehanded and the two cabins work for us."
Matt and Emmy purchased Endeavour in 2008 from Karma Yacht Sales who was referred to them by friends in D.C. Since then, Jack and Lou have become personal friends. Emmy remarked, "We would definitely buy from Karma again. They really go the extra mile."
Before we wrapped up our conversation with Emmy, we asked what advice she would give to someone with an interest in racing, but unsure of how to get involved. Emmy responded, "The biggest hurdle is yourself. Pick up a six-pack and head to the dock on a Wednesday evening. You'll for sure be invited to help out, so just show up! The racing community is very welcoming."
A toast to you Endeavour Crew! Have a great time during the CYC Race to Mackinac.
For More Information Ask Karma Yacht Sales by email or call 1-877-KARMA-Y-S (527-6297)