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Boat Wars: Coming Back

(Thursday at the 2001 IR/CWCC Nationals)

by Tom Tanner, AP (Axis Press)

Johnston, RI Jul. 20 --- After losing Night Battle, the Rainbow Warriors were looking for a sign they could turn things around and win Nats. The sign came when it was announced that frantic negotiations that stretched into the morning had resulted in a minor re-alignment of the fleets. Carl Camurati's Yamato and Dave Voghtman's USS North Carolina would join the Maulers and in return the Rainbow Warriors would get Ken Kelly's Derrflinger and the newly arrived Derfflinger of Tim Filmyer. But would a re-constituted German 1st Scouting Squadron help bring victory to the Rainbow Warriors? Only battle would tell.

The morning battle saw fierce combat as both side's Veribus Unitis-class ships engaged each other at their only range - close. But Rainbow Fleet admiral Chris Decker found himself in trouble when confronted with the two North Carolina's of David Ricci and Dave Voghtman. Taking multiple stern salvos in the bow, the SMS Baden didn't survive the 1st sortie. But Baden's sink was negated when Ken's Derfflinger was put under by a vicious ram from Carl's Yamato, itself being hounded by the other two ships of the 1st Scouting Squadron. The 1st Scouting Squadron had just returned from a successful search and destroy mission vs. Bill Garthaffner's USS Houston, which was chased, forced aground and sunk. In the second sortie, the Maulers got a small measure of revenge for the sinking of the Houston when they sent Dave Lewis' USS Pheonix to Davy Jone's locker. In the end, the Warriors pulled out a 1,700 point victory.

With the recent modification of the Campaign Rules allowing unlimited reloads by all warships, the small ships that formerly enjoyed this advantage went largely un-used this year. One exception was Tom Tanner's IJN Okinoshima. With it's 23 second speed and tight turning ability, it was used to good effect in a tag team with Frank Pittelli's Bacon Maker against the small convoy ships that the Mauler's fielded. The larger convoy ships used by the Rainbow Warriors, being worth more points and making more successful runs, were able to ensure a second straight victory for the Rainbow Warriors. The Warriors had succeeded in coming within striking distance of overall victory.

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This page Copyright 2002, Thomas L. Tanner, Jr. unless otherwise noted.