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Hocus (1116)


 Owner  Bob Britten, Hugh Owen
 Builder
 John Booth, with Garry Cooney doing the finishing work.
Rebuilt extensively in 1992 by Vidas Stukas.
 Year built
 1977
 Hull Markings
 Cream hull and topsides with scarlet striping.

Hocus is owned by Bob Britton and Hugh Owen.

Hocus and Owl in a cold and windy Lemolo Championships.  Note how well balanced the helm is on each boat. (photo by Andrew Madding).
 
Garry Cooney had Hocus ( original name meaning "shaman" ) built in 1977 by John Booth.  She's a FRP hull with the traditional deck also done in FRP.
 
Vidas Stukas bought Hocus in 1984 - his first Thunderbird.   Hilary and Vidas raced it, quite often together, until they sold it to Bob Britten and Hugh Owen in 1998, whereupon they immediately went to win the Pacific NW Regionals in Nanaimo.
 
Hocus was always considered a fast boat, but changed in character over a couple of rebuilds.  The first, by Vidas, occurred in 1986 whereupon it was discovered that the top of the keel was too fat by the rules.  The offending cast iron at the top was ground down; and, suddenly Hocus was very quick up until the 10 knot range.  This helped win some light air Fleet Championships. 
 
Hocus' next rebuild came in 1991-2.  Jack Foster had entered a rebuilt Kolus, 1106, in the late 80's, and began to dominate the fleet, especially in the mid wind range.  Hocus was then taken into John Booth's shop for an extensive rebuild that saw the keel removed, the hull dried and a blister job performed over the course of a winter.  The coamings were also cut down to a more comfortable size.  Before the keel was ground down, a mold was made of the forward third of the keel.  The iron castings had a pronounced bulge low down on the port side, as they were cast on their side.  This bulge was removed, and the keel faired to a set of 4 templates generated from "00" sections by VS.  Some 30# of iron was ground down; and, the keel was brought back up to a midweight by the addition of a steel shoe to the base of the keel ( ie to maximum draft under the rules).The difference in performance was quite remarkable considering that the maximum removed was less than 3/8" ( lower bulge).  Now, Hocus was an excellent performer all around, rather than showing flashes of speed in one wind range.  Interestingly enough, Maurice Tieule used the nose mold on Quatro Vientos to produce a light wind flier that fell off in the mid range.
 
With Vidas, the rejuvenated Hocus went on to win ...Fleet Championships and several Lemolos as well as a Regionals.  With Bob & Hugh, they won a couple of Fleets as well as the very windy Internationals held in Victoria in 1999.  A formidable boat.
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Vidas Stukas,
Jun 12, 2009, 2:58 PM
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