Santana 20

Boat Owner: Ray Staton

Ray Staton - Firefly - Santana 20

Firefly is a 20 foot Santana sloop rigged sport boat designed by W. Shad Turner and manufactured by W.D. Schock Corp. in San Diego, CA.  Firefly has the sail number 562 and is currently owned and raced at Weatherby Lake by me (Ray Staton) and Tony Bohn.

I first met Firefly when I accompanied Scott Jackman to a little town just north of Oklahoma City to meet the owner and seller who I think resided in North Texas near Dallas. Scott loved the boat on first sight and he purchased it on the spot and we towed it back to Weatherby Lake. Scott immediately recruited Mark McKee as his crew and campaigned the boat for two successful seasons. Scott at that time was a US Army Major stationed at Ft Leavenworth who had very little sailing experience. However, he was a pilot who quickly learned to sail on one wing….sail. His crew, Mark McKee is probably the strongest man west of the Mississippi and he could handle the genoa and spinnaker without ever leaving the cockpit.  They were very successful as a racing team and Firefly is a fast boat.

Scott was transferred to Annapolis so Patty Parker and I became partners owning Firefly. We campaigned the boat for a year and then I bought out Patty’s share and she purchased Hal Parrott’s Santana. I recruited Lt. Col. Tony Bohn as my crew and we have been racing together for two years. We have been struggling with the spinnaker for the last year and are getting better each race. We have our moments of speed and glory, but I have snatched defeat from the mouth of victory by going aground several times.

Last winter Brian Stevenson offered the use of his fabulous garage and the help of Tony White, Greg Carlile, Paul Stevenson, and Tony Bohn to refinish Firefly and remove all of the battle damage. I told the team that I did not want to take up much of their time working on the boat so we would just tape off all of the fittings and then sand and paint. WRONG!!!! These guys are world class perfectionists who promptly removed all of the fittings, puttied all of the battle damage, sanded the hull 30,000 times, repaired and refinished all of the woodwork, and painted the boat to perfection. In the words of General Colin Powell, “You ask them to help you refurbish your boat and they own it”. Needless to say, they did a fabulous job and I am eternally grateful. All this work was topped off when Paul Fetterman basically gave me a relatively new genoa and main sail.  We still did not perform very well, but……we looked fabulous. At my age, restoring looks is everything.

Go Firefly!

Ray Staton