After the postponement of a much awaited 2005 gathering at the Hinckley Company in Southwest Harbor, Maine, Hinckley Pilot owners Buzz and Beth Billik formed the Hinckley Pilot Association (HPA). Recognizing the special bond among Pilot owners, the couple has since organized numerous get togethers both on and off the water and host an August rendezvous in Round Pond, Maine.
This year’s gathering of the HPA, the fourth summer event, was the largest turnout ever. Fourteen boats attended with hope of an even larger gathering for 2010.
Although it’s technically a rendezvous, Billik says “It’s pretty difficult to have a series of Pilots sailing together and not have a race. This year we raced from Round Pond out to Allen Island, around Burnt Island and then down to Teal Island before we eased up and found our way to Turkey Cove. It must have been quite a sight, because we picked up a Concordia 41 along the way.”
Attending Pilot owners came from as far as Mill Valley, Calif., with the boat sailing the farthest hailing from Stonington, Conn. The oldest Hinckley Pilot represented was Huntress, hull no. 1, built in 1956.
Billik plans to hold the 2010 event in Freeport, Maine, with hope of attracting more boats from the south. For more information visit www.hinckleypilot.com.