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Latest news from J Boats Inc.

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

J/Boats News is a digest of worldwide events, regattas, and news for sailing enthusiasts and members of our J Community. Contributions regarding your racing, cruising or human interest stories on-board J’s are welcome- please send to “editor@jboats.com“.  For you globe-trotting J cruisers, please keep us up-to-date with your travels- for examples to chronicle your adventures please see our J/ Community Cruising section below. 

August 30th, 2017
 

J/121 sailing fast!


J/70s sailing St MoritzJ/70 SAILING Champions League- St Moritz Preview
(St Moritz, Switzerland)- Europe´s sailing elite will meet at the Segel-Club St. Moritz for the SAILING Champions League during the first weekend of September- the 1st to the 3rd. Teams like the Royal Norwegian Yacht Club (SAILING Champions League winners 2015 and Norwegian champions 2016), the Yacht Club Bregenz (Austrian Champions 2015 and 2016), and the hosts, Segel-Club St. Moritz will be among the participants. Altogether 28 clubs will come to St. Moritzersee to qualify for the final in Porto Cervo, Sardinia. So, lots to look forward to as the top teams from the best sailing clubs in Europe face-off over the weekend in this gorgeous, picturesque Alpine setting nestled in a long valley.

For the first time in SAILING Champions League (SCL) history, the participants have the chance to prove their skills on this outstanding sailing area in St. Moritz. Quick maneuvers, excellent tactics, and perfect boat handling are demanded on the St. Moritzersee, which is only 600 meters wide!

One of the favorites in Switzerland is the Royal Norwegian Yacht Club who won the SAILING Champions League in 2015. They were Norwegian Champions last year and want to prove this year that they are right on track for this international field. Their crew is composed of Kristoffer Spone, Sigurd Hekk Paulsen, and Lars Horn Johannesen.

J/70s sailing St Moritz, SwitzerlandFurthermore, top sailors from different Olympic and International classes will crew the boats during this internationally respected competition to win the European Champion´s bowl. Among others Michael Meister (SCTWV Achensee)- the Austrian 470-champion; Hendrik Kadelbach (Verein Seglerhaus am Wannsee)- the German 470-champion U21; and Bo Petersen (Hellerup Yachtclub, Denmark)- the European Dinghy-champion in 2016. High-classed sailors, short races, identical J/70 class sailboats, and a standardized course will guarantee a thrilling weekend in St. Moritz.

St. Moritz is one of the most famous holiday destinations in the world, it was twice host city for the Winter Olympics, and is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Its name is synonymous worldwide with style, elegance and class.

Some places on earth are simply unlike anywhere else. The mere mention of their name is strangely compelling and brings to mind all manner of stunning imagery. St. Moritz is one such place. And, that’s not just because this is where James Bond dashed down the ski slopes in the movie- “The Spy Who Loved Me!” For it was here, 1,856 metres above sea level, in the heart of the spectacular Upper Engadin lakes district, that the notion of winter holidays and present-day winter sports were born, and where Olympic Winter Games were held on two occasions. The first electric light, the first skiing school, and Switzerland’s first electric tram are among the pioneering feats in St. Moritz’s long list of achievements. And yet, St. Moritz originally rose to prominence due its mineral springs, which have been attracting visitors for more than 3,000 years, and lay the foundation for its spa tradition.

Today, St. Moritz is the number one alpine holiday destination. The sun-kissed Alpine metropolis on the south-facing flank of the Alps boasts an airport, the Engadin Airport, and it is the terminus of both the Glacier Express and the Bernina Express – two names that stand for quintessential classic train travelling. When UNESCO bestowed the accolade of World Heritage Site on the Rhaetian Railway’s Albula and Bernina train lines in 2008, St. Moritz became the only destination in the world to unite both the Olympic Games and the UNESCO labels.

St. Moritz is well known for its grand hotels and high-end cuisine; set in a privileged position over Lake St. Moritz, the Badrutt’s “Palace Hotel” is, possibly, the most famous hotel in the Alps and no doubt an icon of St. Moritz’s league of five-star hotels. Award-winning restaurants top it all off– the valley at an altitude of 1,856 metres amasses so many Gault Millau points that «haute cuisine» gets a whole new meaning.

The Via Serlas is to St. Moritz what the Rodeo Drive is to Los Angeles. Just a bit more condensed. High-end art galleries round off the exclusive shopping opportunities in the town center. The Segantini Museum is internationally renown, and the St. Moritz Casino caters for entertainment late into the night. Those inclined to be sporty will be thrilled by the Olympic Bob Run St. Moritz–Celerina and the Cresta Run, two legendary bobsleigh and skeleton institutions. Top events on the frozen Lake St. Moritz such as the White Turf horse races and the Snow Polo World Cup are just as legendary. They have long become the extravagant social highlights in St. Moritz’s remarkable calendar of events that so far counted five Alpine World Ski Championships.

In short, the sailors will have plenty of “après-sailing” distractions after a long day of racing on the water!  As the technological partner of the SAILING Champions League, SAP will provide spectators worldwide with a thrilling livestream. Races will be broadcast live via the Internet Saturday and Sunday at noon. Results can be found here: http://www.sapsailing.com.  For more SAILING Champions League information and “live” broadcast


J/92 sailing Vineyard RaceThe Vineyard Race Preview
(Stamford, CT)- Labor Day weekend’s Vineyard Race is a classic American yachting event. This 238-mile course stretches from Shippan Point through the swirling currents of Plum Gut, past Block Island, and on to the light tower at the entrance to Buzzard’s Bay. Once reached, sailors return by leaving Block Island to starboard en route to the finish in Stamford Harbor.

Begun in 1932, it has attracted the finest sailors and fastest boats for nearly 80 years, and its intricacies and challenges bring them back time after time. Those who are successful nearly always credit local knowledge of these tricky waters and a good deal of luck.

The Vineyard Race was described in Yachting Magazine as, “The greatest distance races of the world have several things in common – a challenging course, competitive fleets and an interesting array of famous yachts. By those standards, the Stamford Yacht Club’s Vineyard Race rates close to the top. Like a miniature Fastnet, the Vineyard has a combination of coastal cruising, where currents play a big role, a stretch of open ocean sailing, and a mark to round- the Buzzards Bay tower – before returning.”

The race has continuously attracted top J/teams over the years from J/29s up to J/160s.  Of the 103 keelboats registered to sail this weekend, twenty-six are J/crews (representing one-quarter of the fleet)!  The race has now expanded its format to accommodate the wide range of sailors in the northeast, with three races being run simultaneously.  The “classic” is the “round Buzzards Bay Tower” and back.  The two additions are the Cornfield Point Course (the shortest) and the Seaflower Reef Course (middle distance).  

J/97 Participant- sailing Vineyard RaceSailing in the PHRF 2 Cornfield Point course is John Krediet’s J/97 PARTICIPANT II from Stamford, CT.

In the Seaflower Reef course, Greg Imbruce’s J/109 JOYRIDE will be sailing in the PHRF 3 Doublehanded class.  On the same track in PHRF 4 class will be seven other J/crews; such as Frank Conway’s J/105 RAPTOR; Chris Ercole’s J/109 SWEET CAROLINE; four J/88s (Al Minella’s ALBONDIGAS, Iris Vogel’s DEVIATION, Ken & Drew Hall’s NEVERMORE, & John Pearson’s RED SKY); and Todd Aven’s J/92 THIN MAN.

Sending it on the “classic” Vineyard Race track will be Gardner Grant’s well-traveled J/120 ALIBI, racing in IRC 5 Doublehanded class.  Hoping to repeat earlier offshore success in the Ida Lewis Distance Race will be the American YC’s Young American Jr Big Boat Team, racing their J/105 YOUNG AMERICAN in PHRF 7 class.  PHRF 8 class is a battle of the 35-footers, such as Chris Nicholls’ J/109 RHIANNON up against two J/35’s- Jim Farrell’s SAPPHIRE and Mike Greene’s LOBLOLLY.  PHRF 9 class includes another J/109- John Greifzu’s GROWTH SPURT, along with four J/120’s (Steven Levy’s EAGLE, Brian Spears’ MADISON, another Young American Jr Big Boat crew on VAREKAI, & Greg Leonard’s HERON), and William Ingraham’s J/124 TENEBRAE.  PHRF 10 class has a trio of J/111s fighting for class honors (John Donovan’s LIBERTAS, MaryEllen Tortorello’s PARTNERSHIP, & Abhijeet Lele’s VARUNA), and Kevin Kelley’s J/122 SUMMER GRACE. Finally, IRC 11 class has two J/44’s racing- Len Sitar’s VAMP and SUNY Maritime’s CHARLIE V.  Follow the Vineyard Race on Facebook here   For more Vineyard Race sailing information


Tri-State Race sailors on Lake MichiganChicago Tri-State Race Preview
(Chicago, IL)- The Tri-State is a 3-leg offshore race held over Labor Day Weekend on the southern parts of Lake Michigan. Chicago to St. Joseph, MI is the first leg of the race. More than 100 boats depart on the 50.5 NM journey across the lake on Friday night. Saturday is a day of rest in St. Joseph with the Annual Beach Volleyball Tournament and live entertainment at the St. Joseph River Yacht Club. On Sunday morning, racers choose to continue to Michigan City, IN as part of the traditional Tri-State or head back to Chicago for the Bi-State.

In the fleet of 104 boats, 24 of them are J/teams (about 23% of all entries).  The J/105s are racing as a one-design class, with eight crews ready for the sprint across the lake.  Several top crews are in the mix, including Vanessa Gates’ STRIKING, Gyt Petkus’ VYTIS, and Clark Pellet’s SEALARK.

In the tough seventeen-boat PHRF 4 class are a quartet of J/88’s, including Andy Graff’s EXILE, Rich Stearns’ HOKEY SMOKE, Ben Wilson’s RAMBLER and Boyd Jarrell’s SLOT MACHINE.  Joining in on the fun will be John Madey’s J/92 CYCLONE.

The sixteen-boat PHRF 3 class is shaping up to be yet another battle of 35-footers.  Three J/109s vs. two J/35s vs a bunch of other 35-somethings.  The J/109 ringleader must certainly be the Chicago Mackinac Race winner, Bob Evans’ GOAT RODEO, up against his colleagues Elwood Hansmann’s BLOODLINE and Jim Caesar’s LIQUID LOUNGE II.  The J/35’s are Mitch Weisman’s FLYING SPHAGETTI MONSTER and Rick Reed’s OB LA DI!

With eighteen boats, the PHRF 2 class is the largest in the event and will have a lot of stiff competition.  A trio of J/111’s with extensive offshore experience should be contenders, such as Kevin Saedi & Raman Yousefi’s MOMENTUS, John Kalanik’s PURA VIDA, and Tom Dickson’s WARLOCK.  They will have to contend with Frank Giampoli’s J/120 JAHAZI and Jim Gignac’s J/130 SALSA.  

Finally, in PHRF 1 class, carrying the J/banner all alone will be Tom Papoutsis’ J/133 RENEGADE in a class with an eclectic mixture of much larger offshore racing machines- like an Andrews 77 and a TP52!  For more Tri-State Race sailing information


J/109s sailing round islandConanicut YC Round Island Race Preview
(Jamestown, RI)- The 90th Annual Around The Island Race is taking place this weekend on Narragansett Bay and an enormous fleet of 101 boats are participating, 23 of them are J/Crews (about 23% of the fleet)!

The event signifies for many sailors on Narragansett Bay the culmination of their summer sailing season.  Since it coincides with America’s Labor Day holiday weekend, it also marks the transition from summer vacation to children and youth going back to school in September for their new school year. In other words, for many families, the “last blast” before the fall season kicks in.

Amongst the highlights of this year’s Round Island Race will be the debut of the brand new J/121 INCOGNITO, skippered by her new owner Joe Brito with Jeff Johnstone aboard helping on speed and tactics.  They will be tested hard by Jack Gregg’s J/122 TARAHUMARA in PHRF Class 1.  

Then, in PHRF 2 Class, will be a trio of J/109s (Bill Kneller’s VENTO SOLARE, Brooke Mastrorio’s URSA, & John Sahagian’s PICANTE), Paul Grimes’ J/35 BREAKAWAY, Dawson & Ben Hodgson’s J/100 GRIMACE, and Doug Newhouse’s J/88 YONDER.

In PHRF 3 Class will be a mix of classic J’s.  At the top of the fleet will be Stephen Lipman’s J/37C DUCK SOUP; they will be chased hard by Sean Doyle’s J/105 KESTREL and a ubiquitous Narragansett Bay competitor- EC Helme’s J/92S SPIRIT!

The next class will be an interesting mix of boats that includes J/70s and J/80s.  Who will beat who?? Who knows?  It all depends on the course, the breeze, and the breeze angles!  Three J/70s are sailing- Chris Murray, Gordon Fletcher’s GIJIMA, & Suzy Leech’s JUNKANOO.  Victor Bell’s J/80 PHANTOM will be working hard to hold off the onslaught of those “little boats”!

In PHRF 5 Class, it will be a battle of the classic “J” 30+ footers!  Two J/30s- Chris Tate’s BLITZ and Daniel Borsutzky’s FLYING HIGH versus James Cornwall’s J/35C SUGAREE and Dennis Nixon’s J/29 LYNX!

Whether or not the CYC considers them a J/24 “class”, there is no question that after 40 YEARS, the J/24 Newport Fleet #50 has been a long, long-time supporter of the Conanicut YC Round Island Race!  Past winners over time sailing J/24s- Ken Read, Brad Read, Tony Rey, Anthony Kotoun, Terry Hutchinson, Bob, Stu & Jeff Johnstone.  Not exactly chump change in the world of sailing.  The J/24 fleet includes several Newport J/24 #50 Fleet winners.  For more Conanicut YC Around Island Race sailing information


J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J’s Sailing Worldwide

The final week of sailing in August in the northern hemisphere was highlighted by the J/111 World Championship that took place in San Francisco, CA, hosted by the St Francis YC; it was an epic and challenging affair for the four-day regatta.  Just south of them in King Harbor, CA (the Los Angeles basin), the King Harbor YC hosted their annual King Harbor Regatta that had J/70s as their largest fleet, and it was part of their SoCal series.  Heading across the continent about 2,000 miles east (e.g. bigger than Europe geographically), the Verve Cup Regatta took place at Chicago YC’s Belmont Station for yet another huge fleet of J/70s.  Then, heading another 1,000 miles further east to Boston (exhausting to even think about it riding my bike!), we find the annual Ted Hood Regatta took place in Marblehead, MA, hosted by their famous trio of clubs (Boston YC, Corinthian YC, Eastern YC) for one-design fleets of J/70s, J/105s and a big PHRF handicap fleet!

Meanwhile, on the eastern side of the Atlantic Ocean, there was a lot of sailing activity taking place from the United Kingdom to the Continental Europe. Starting in the U.K. the Dartmouth Regatta took place in Dartmouth, England- the event saw a J/112E win (!), and great performances by J/122, J/88, J/109 teams.  Heading across “La Manche”, we land in Breskens, The Netherlands.  Why?  It was the occasion of the Breskens Sailing Weekend that included the European J/111 fleet, plus IRC classes that included J/97s, J/105s, and J/109s.  

In France, the J/80’s participated in their annual Obelix Trophy.  As part of their J/80 Coupe de France, sailing on the lake at Bénodet, France is a special occasion for many J/80 teams that participate in the French J/80 season sailing circuit.  

The past week was also a very busy one for the J/70 sailing leagues in Europe. This popular format is only getting more popular, the European version of what many know in America as “college sailing”- rotating teams onto a fleet of just six boats for 12 or 18 teams- the socializing between the clubs and teams on-shore between time on the water is what makes it so, so fun!  You get to meet people while racing during the day! Not just in the morning, or the evening, but actually having a chance to compare notes and meet each other during the day!  A radical concept, for sure!  Socializing sailing with friends as you watch the racing in front of you take place just dozens of meters offshore!  

Such was the case in Switzerland, Sweden and Denmark.  Ever go skiing in Europe?  Perhaps you have heard of Davos? It is famous in the circles of the World Cup in skiing for the F.I.S. World Championship. It is also a very dynamic community in the summer.  The lake at Davos is, perhaps, more famous in the summer-time for European cognoscenti!  Famous for attracting the people that love the Alps, the cool temperatures in the summer, there was no question J/70 sailors were excited to sail in a famous Alpine resort.  The host for the 4th event was the Davos Sailing & Surf Club!

Similarly, the Swedish J/70 Sailing League took place in Jönköping, Sweden- a city on the shores of Lake Vättern, in southern Sweden. It’s known for its long lake-side beach, Vätterstranden. In the center is the 19th-century Sofia Church, with its neo-Gothic design and towering spire.

Then, the Danish J/70 Sailing League took place in Aarhus, Denmark- a city first settled in the 5th Century AD and has always enjoyed a strong sailing heritage- dominated first by the infamous Vikings of Scandinavia, then later successive waves of settlers that made the seaport their commercial home for fishing the Baltic Sea.

Meanwhile, an Australian team nearly won the J/111 Worlds in San Francisco Bay, California.  Their friends Down Under were cheering them on, flying the “boxing kangaroo” flag at the AUDI Hamilton Island Race Week.  Each year, this famous “spring time” event in Australia takes place on the northern end of the famous Great Barrier Reef of Australia- a world UNESCO site that all sailors should be concerned about as it is dying a slow, painful death.

Read on! The J/Community and Cruising section below has many entertaining stories and news about J/Sailors as well as cruising blogs about those who continue to enjoy the Caribbean and the South Pacific, staying warm while others are trying to stay warm up north.  Check them out!  More importantly, if you have more J/Regatta News, please email it or  upload onto our J/Boats Facebook pag  Below are the summaries.


Regatta & Show Schedules:

Aug 19-26- AUDI Hamilton Race Week- Hamilton Island, Australia
Aug 23-27- J/111 World Championship- San Francisco, CA
Aug 25-27- Breskens Sailing Weekend- Breskens, The Netherlands
Sep 12-16- J/70 World Championship- Porto Cervo, Italy
Sep 14-17- Rolex Big Boat Series- San Francisco, CA
Sep 15-23- J/24 World Championship- Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
Sep 22-24- J/FEST San Diego- San Diego, CA
Sep 24- Oct 1- J/24 European Championship- Lake Balaton, Hungary
Sep 30- Oct 1- J/70 East Coast Championship- Deltaville, VA

For additional J/Regatta and Event dates in your region, please refer to the on-line J/Sailing Calendar.


J/111 Worlds- San FranciscoSKELETON KEY Crowned J/111 World Champion!
(San Francisco, CA)- After nine races spread over four grueling days, Peter Wagner’s SKELETON KEY was crowned the 2017 J/111 World Champion. Going into the final day, the regatta was still anyone’s game, and all eyes were on the top three contenders that had battled for pole position throughout the event- Skeleton Key, Slush Fund & Joust. The regatta was hosted by St Francis YC, with sailing taking place on the notoriously challenging San Francisco Bay.
 
J/111 JOUST from AustraliaIn total, there were eight teams competing for the J/111 world title, with four boats from the Bay Area, one boat from Los Angeles, two from Annapolis, Maryland, and one boat— Rod Warren’s JOUST— from Melbourne, Australia.  Here is how it all went down over the course of the four-day event.

Day 1- Thursday
Spend enough time sailing on any body of water and it slowly reveals its secrets, giving sailors a set of rules-of-thumb that should—theoretically— be the keys to success, provided that time-honored patterns prove consistent. San Francisco Bay certainly has its closely guarded secrets, as the sailors learned during the first three races. But, instead of delivering conditions that were consistent with the tacticians’ hard-won playbooks, Thursday’s action was defined by big fleet splits that delivered interesting returns on investment at the rounding marks, leeward gate and finishing line.
 
“By running three races, our goal was to let the fleet leg-out a bit,” said Jeff Johnson, the StFYC Principal Race Officer. “We saw gradually building conditions throughout the day that gave people time to shift gears and to introduce their crews to San Francisco Bay.”
 
The build-up began with a slowly gathering morning breeze that filled in on the Bay’s Berkeley Circle, where the racing was held, with a steady 10-knot breeze and a tide that was flooding by the time the first starting gun sounded. While common wisdom on the Berkeley Circle holds that one should go right until it doesn’t work, some of the fleet instead opted for better current relief and while others sought out stronger pressure.
 
J/111 Worlds startOnce the starting signals began sounding, all crews brought their A-game to bear against their rivals on a windward-leeward-twice-around course. And, while rules-of-thumb were certainly considered, the fastest sailors also knew when to go off-piste in terms of their rulebook strategy. “It took a lot of grinding,” said Peter Wagner, skipper of Skeleton Key (USA 115), immediately after taking the regatta’s first bullet. “The race was won upwind.” When queried about the favored side of the course, Wagner’s crew reported that things oscillated, requiring sharp focus from the entire team, and from their skipper.
 
The breeze continued to slowly gather for the day’s second race, forcing teams to work through their gear changes and apply more rig tension as needed. Again, the fleet chose opposite sides of the racetrack up the first uphill hike, with Jim Connelly’s Slush Fund (USA 119) winning the start and holding her advantage all the way around to the finishing line, where Skeleton Key almost nicked victory. Rod Warren’s Joust (AUS 1110) crossed the finishing line next to complete the second race’s Top Three.
 
“Our plan was just to have fun and sail fast,” said Jason Currie, Slush Fund’s mainsail trimmer, just after crossing the line. “We won the pin end of the start, and we tacked and sailed away. Currents played into it a fair amount, and we sailed into the cone of Alcatraz” to seek relief from the flooding waters.
 
J/111 Worlds San FranciscoSt. Francis Yacht Club’s race committee was clearly paying attention to the shifting weather conditions as the daily high-pressure system tried valiantly to push blue skies above the course, but the marine layer remained steady, even as the breeze swung to the south for the day’s final race. Skeleton Key enjoyed a tactically wise mid-line start, followed by Martin Roesch’s Velocity and Doug and Jack Jorgensen’s Picosa, but the building breeze and steepening waves saw numerous lead changes. By the first weather mark, Picosa was in the pole position, followed by Skeleton Key and Slush Fund. But, instead of the rich getting richer, Warren’s Joust team crossed the upwind finishing line in first place, followed by Velocity and Slush Fund.  At the end of the first day of racing, Skeleton Key was topping the leaderboard, followed by Joust and Slush Fund.

J/111 Worlds San FranciscoDay 2- Friday
Despite forecasts for lighter-than-average wind on San Francisco Bay, the second day delivered fresh conditions that gathered as the day’s action unfurled. Berkeley Circle conditions started with a gentle 5-7 knots for the first race and topped out in the high-teens with puffs into the low-20s by the end of the day. But while Mother Nature was dynamic in her temperament, the fleet’s fastest guns kept their performances consistent, proving once again that one-mode boats don’t win world championship titles.
 
Unlike yesterday, the old saw about the Berkeley Circle (“going right always works until it doesn’t”) proved accurate today, especially for teams that worked the inside lanes. Jim Connelly’s Slush Fund beat the fleet to the first mark, followed by Wagner’s Skeleton Key— positions that both boats held across the finish. Warren’s Joust rounded out the top three.
 
“We had great upwind speed, clean air and a great start off the line,” said Connolly, just after taking his proud win. “We were off the line nicely. It was upwind performance— that’s what did it for us!”
 
J/111s sailing Worlds on San Francisco BayThe breeze continued to freshen for the day’s second race, which was also a windward-leeward-twice-around contest that sent teams on a 1.8 nautical mile climb that, in turn, was rewarded with big-grin kite rides. Wagner’s Skeleton Key and Connelly’s Slush Fund both enjoyed strong starts.  However, six of the eight-boat fleet broke left, ditching the typical wisdom exercised on the Circle. While Skeleton Key and Slush Fund covered each other tightly on the first leg, Warren’s Joust rounded the first mark in the pole position and managed to stave off Skeleton’s Key’s advances until an ugly looking gybe coming into the finishing line almost cost the Aussies their bullet. Fortunately, the team from Down Under man-handled their kite just in time, leaving second and third places to Skeleton Key and Slush Fund, respectively.
 
“These were perfect conditions,” said Joust’s Aaron Cole, just after finishing. As for that final gybe, “we got a little chicken-winged out and came in a little bit hot, but we got control and luckily pulled it off!”

Interestingly, almost all teams doused their headsails on the downhill legs in favor of a main-and-kite-only configuration, but once the wind began to gather to around 15-17 knots, most headsails remained at full hoist. “It’s our cross-over between planning and soaking,” said Cole. “If you do it at the right time, you get on the plane and go downwind fast.”
 
The Race Committee gave competitors an extra few minutes to tighten their shrouds between the day’s final two races, the latter of which saw big breeze that was complimented by a flooding tide. While the wind was with the water, the Bay’s long fetch still managed to churn the Berkeley Circle into the notorious “washing machine chop” wave pattern.
 
Warren’s Joust enjoyed another fine start to the day’s third race, followed by Connolly’s Slush Fund and Wagner’s Skeleton Key, but by the first weather mark Roesch’s Velocity managed to nose in between Joust and Slush Fund. While Velocity’s pace looked strong as the team worked their way around the top of the course, a series of leader changes unfurled that saw Slush Fund reap the day’s final win, followed by Picosa and Velocity, with Skeleton Key being forced to settle for a fourth-place finish.
 
After six races over two days, Connolly’s Slush Fund was in the pole position and tied with Wagner’s Skeleton Key for total points (15). However, Slush Fund were sitting on a net score of 9 points (due to discarded races), while Wagner carried 11 points and Joust was in third place with 12 net points.

J/111 Worlds off Golden Gate BridgeDay 3- Saturday
One of the marks of a world-championship-level sailing team is the ability to rapidly adjust to evolving conditions while also being fast at courses of all lengths and shapes. Such was the test Saturday as the race committee sent the eight-strong fleet on a 26.4-nautical-mile tour of the Bay that took teams from Alcatraz out under the Golden Gate Bridge to Point Bonito, then back into the Bay for some seriously fast legs that tested teams at all angles and all wind velocities, while also challenging their ability to stay focused for hours.

“There’s a strong precedent in the J/111 class to have a distance race with their Worlds, so we’re including it,” said Jenn Lancaster, St. Francis Yacht Club’s Race Director. “It worked out great with our schedule, and we created a course that gave people good exposure to all corners of the Bay and a chance to sail under the Golden Gate Bridge, which is a Bucket List item for most sailors.”

J/111 sailing on San Francisco BayGiven that conditions outside of the Golden Gate Bridge are usually a different animal than conditions inside, the adventure quotient was high come dock-out. “Lead, cover, extend, come home early, and watch out for whales,” said Warren, skipper of Joust, which hails from the Sandringham Yacht Club in Sandringham, Australia, of his teams strategy. As for if his team prefers distance races or windward-leewards, Warren jested, “I’ll tell you after today!”

A 5-8 knot breeze greeted sailors at the starting line, however the days forecast called for must stronger winds as the sun marched west. At the start, Jorgensen’s Picosa crossed first, followed by Wagner’s Skeleton Key and Roesch’s Velocity. The Golden Gate Bridge’s north and south towers were just emerging from the Bay’s infamous marine layer as the fleet headed for the Marin side of the course and some current relief. Here, the key to success lay in hugging close to the Marin Headlands’ rocky coastline, practically scrapping the bricks as rigs cleared the Golden Gate Bridge.

Outside of this world-famous landmark was a confused and sometimes-choppy seaway and even less wind pressure. Teams continued to hug the shoreline, their laminate sails and carbon rigs camouflaged against a backdrop of dark oceanic basalt cliffs and hills punctuated by redwoods, sequoias and juniper trees.

Sticky, light-air conditions prevailed until teams rounded a mark off of Point Bonita Lighthouse, popped their kites, and headed back towards Treasure Island, with Slush Fund leading the way, followed by Picosa and Skeleton Key, with Joust in hot pursuit.

Whales flashed their fins as the teams fought to keep their kites full— an issue that would quickly vanish once teams entered the Bay where the breeze was building fast.

Once past the bridge, the “Nantucket sleigh rides” commenced as teams fought to control their steeds in 20+ knots of breeze. At the second turning mark, situated off Treasure Island, Picosa had snatched the lead, followed by Skeleton Key and Slush Fund, with Joust still skirmishing for a spot in the top three.

J/111s sailing upwind at WorldsNext, the fleet aimed their bows back upwind for Harding Rock, the third turning mark, as a flood tide pressed hard against the buoy. The top four boats held their positions as crews prepared for the next kite-set and screaming sleigh-ride back down the Bay.

The Berkeley Pier Ruins were the fourth turning point on the Bay Tour, and teams prepared for the final beat back up to Point Cavallo, where they would bear off and aim their bows for the finishing line.

While the boathandling wasn’t easy, Skeleton Key picked-off Picosa’s lead at the last mark, however both boats went low after hoisting their kites, setting themselves up to cross the finishing line under jibs and mainsails, given the angles involved. Joust’s position gave them time to study the leaders’ fortunes and they opted for a very different angle that allowed them to carry their kite all the way to a screaming first-place finish.

“On the last run down, Aaron Cole, my tactician, worked out that we shouldn’t hoist our kite right away but instead cross the current and then go up with the kite,” said an elated Warren at the dock. “We were in third place, but this queued us with the guys ahead of us, who we passed in that last bit, which I guess is the only bit that really counts!”  After seven races over three days, Slush Fund topped the leaderboard, followed by Joust and Skeleton Key.

J/111 sailing Worlds under spinnakerDay 4- Sunday- the Finale
Bright sunshine and 10 knots of air greeted the crews for the final day of racing. Racing had been consistently competitive throughout four days of competition, with regular leader changes and a good mix of boats winning top-three finishes. Better still, the weather cooperated perfectly, giving sailors a hearty dose of what they came for- San Francisco’s legendary summer breeze.

Going into the final day, Connolly’s Slush Fund had 12 pts net, with Joust sitting on 13 pts net, and Skeleton Key in third place with 13 net points.  To say it was anybody’s game was certainly going to ring true after two more races were scheduled to determine the World Champion.

“Coming into today, we had already enjoyed three days of racing,” said Jenn Lancaster, St. Francis Yacht Club’s Race Director. “After a challenging distance race yesterday, it was great to round-out this championship with racing on the Berkeley Circle.”

A moderate breeze worked in tandem with the current and tide to create lumpy seas that would only increase in height, steepness and frequency. The Race Committee signaled Course 4 (windward-leeward, twice around), and teams jostled for a favored spot on the starting line. Come the starting signal, Skeleton Key, Velocity and Joust were the quickest off the line, with five of the eight boats opting for the stronger pressure on the course’s left-hand side.

J/111s sailing under Golden Gate BridgeA strong North Bay push threatened to set boats to the southeast that didn’t properly account for this influence, and— at the first windward mark— Slush Fund rounded and hoisted their kite first, followed by Skeleton Key and Picosa. Slush Fund successfully held their lead through the gate, followed by Skeleton Key and Joust.  But, fortunes changed come the second weather mark as Skeleton Key rounded first, followed by Picosa and Slush Fund. Numerous gybes and more leader changes ensued before Skeleton Key’s bow pierced the finishing line to take the win, followed by Picosa and Slush Fund.

The RC promptly signaled the day’s last race, which was a windward-leeward-twice-around affair, fortified by an extra windward leg for an uphill finish. The starting signal sounded, with Skeleton Key again enjoying a fine start, followed by Velocity and Reuben Rocci’s Swift Ness. By the first windward mark, Joust had claimed the pole position, followed by Skeleton Key and Slush Fund. Kites were hoisted and the bow spray instantly started flying.

Positions held at the leeward gate all the way to the finishing line, where a loud chorus of cheers could be heard coming from the Australian boat. While Joust sailed a phenomenal last race, it wasn’t enough to earn them the world title.  Instead, that went to Skeleton Key, a team that consistently proved their mettle. “Congratulations to Skeleton Key and Slush Fund,” said a tired-but-happy Warren, reflecting on his third-place overall finish. “I thought four bullets would have done it, but not quite.”

J/111 Skeleton Key- Peter WagnerAfter nine races, Peter Wagner’s Skeleton Key crew are the new J/111 World Champions, and their victory on their home waters is made all the sweeter by the fact that they came in second at last year’s J/111 Worlds in Cowes, United Kingdom.

“It took a lot of patience,” said an elated Wagner. “There was a lot of depth at the top of the fleet. Slush Fund had the best speed; Joust was consistent and fast; we had our moments; and several others such as Picosa and Velocity sailed well. We took nothing for granted out there. It was a long regatta that wasn’t decided until the final beat. It took a lot of concentration, but I’m glad we held it together.”

When asked about the origins of his boat’s moniker, Wagner cracked a wry smile. “A skeleton key is an Australian term for a surfboard that performs well in a variety of conditions, and we like to think that we sail well in all conditions.” For those that wonder where Peter came from in his sailing career, he was an All-American at Harvard University’s Sailing Team in the world’s toughest collegiate sailing competitions in New England for a period of four years on the Charles River- famous for producing many of America’s top competitors.  Think Kenny Read at Boston University as a simple poster child.

Rounding out the top five were Connelly’s Slush Fund in 2nd, Warren’s Joust in 3rd, Jorgensen’s Picosa in 4th and Roesch’s Velocity in 5th. Sailing photo credits- Chris Ray/ Christy Usher/ Gerard Sheridan/ Leslie Richter.  For more J/111 World Championship sailing information


J/112E winning Dart Regatta off EnglandJ/112E Victorious @ Dart Regatta!
(Dartmouth, United Kingdom)- For the Dartmouth Regatta 2017, the J/U.K. Team asked J/80 sailors, Nick and Annie Haigh. If they would like to put a crew together for the J/112E DAVANTI TYRES campaign. Now living in The West Country, Nick and Annie recruited a friendly crew of great sailors, most of whom are Devon based. Nick helmed the boat and Annie trimmed the spinnaker.

Day 1- Thursday
The first day of the regatta saw the crew sail together for the first time; Nick and Annie had sailed onboard for a day at the J/Cup. The Mast man- Mike- was the only other crew member to have previously sailed a J/112E.

The day dawned with sunshine and a 10 knot breeze. The fleet was made up of some very good teams, Ed Fishwick’s Redshift had won the RORC Easter regatta as well as races at the IRC Nationals and Cowes Week. Tim Cunliffe’s Insatiable from Falmouth was a class winner at Dartmouth Regatta 2016. Sistership J/112E J’OUVERT is a local Dartmouth boat that had shown great bursts of speed at the J/Cup. Mike Bridges Elaine is a serial winner, although her configuration perhaps suits stronger winds than the regatta forecast.  And, the J/88’s EAT SLEEP J REPEAT and J-DREAM were fresh from their 1-2 success at the J/88 Nationals.

Paul Heys from J/U.K. was to miss the first day of racing, travelling back from the launching of the new J/121 in Newport. Arriving in Dartmouth he was delighted to hear that the team had scored a 1-1-3 and were leading Redshift by 2 points.  Nick, like all who have sailed her, expressed delight at the boats ability to outpoint rivals.

J/112E winning Dart Regatta, U.K.Day 2- Friday
The dawned with a very light wind forecast and only one race was sailed. Becoming boxed in at the start and then finding ourselves on the wrong side of a wind shift, we found ourselves buried deep at the first windward mark. Good sailing and raw speed allowed us to carve our way back to a third place, meaning we were now only retaining the lead by virtue of count back.

Day 3- Saturday
Unfortunately, there was even less wind on Saturday and the full day programme was cancelled.

Day 4- Sunday
On the final race day, there was just a little more wind forecast. Not much, that’s for sure!

The race officer set the line with a very large port bias, adding extra pressure for the helm and tactician. In both races Nick Cherry, helming Redshift, made great starts at the pin with us very close behind. Redshift, our closest rival, had to give the J/112E time so if the J/112E can finish within 14 seconds of her after an hours sailing, the J/112E takes the win!  However, there was no question the crew preferred the safer bet of leading Redshift home!

Here is the report from Paul Heys on what ultimately happened on the last day:

“In the first race of the day, we were able to sail down inside of Redshift on the first run, despite the fact that we have a centerline bowsprit and A sail, whilst they have a symmetrical pole. It may be the case that our hull shape and single rudder has less drag than their fatter stern, twin rudder design?

In the second race, we followed them and the Mumm 30 for the first lap, then we adopted our preferred strategy of sailing the boat very upright upwind, whilst most others were inducing heel in an attempt to reduce drag. In this upright mode, the new keel designed by Al Johnstone really works well, allowing us to move forward and climb out from first the Mumm and then Redshift. Thus, we ended the regatta with double line honours and handicap victories, winning the class with four straight firsts!!

Sailing this regatta reminded me of 2009 when we first campaigned the J/97; both boats have an extremely competitive performance with no weak spots.

As all-round boats that can compete doublehanded, fully crewed and then serve as an express cruiser, they are very hard to beat.

The J/97’s went on to become serial winners at many, many regattas. We are confident that the J/112E has a similarly bright future.”  For more J/112E sailboat information


J/133 Euphoria winning Australia's Hamilton Island Race WeekJ/133 EUPHORIA Wins @ AUDI Hamilton Race Week
(Hamilton Island, Australia)- Following the destruction wrought by Cyclone Debbie just 5 months ago, Hamilton Island was back to its beautiful best for Audi Hamilton Island Race Week held August 19th to 26th, contested by 215 yachts from all around Australia.

Five J/Boats contested various divisions in the event, including Stephen Everett’s J/160 SALACIA, Chris Morgan’s J/130 RAGTIME, James Crowley’s J/122 JAVELIN, Norman Weaver’s J/122E JAZZAMATAZZ and Tony Coleman’s J/133 EUPHORIA.

JAZZAMATAZZ and EUPHORIA both made the 1,000nm delivery voyage from Sydney to compete in the beautiful warm waters of the Whitsunday Islands.

Euphoria’s overall win in the Racer Cruiser division was particularly notable. Competing against a very diverse group of yachts that included the previous year’s divisional winner (a Sydney 32), several Beneteaus, a very fast one-design canting keel 40ft racing yacht, three Melges 32’s and some other sports boats, Euphoria scored 3 wins out of 6 races in a variety of wind strengths that ranged from less than 5 knots to more than 20 knots over the week. As a result, Euphoria comfortably won the point-score for her division.
 
Euphoria has now built an enviable track record at HIRW having also won her division in 2011 and coming second on a count-back in 2015 when tied equal first on points. Her owner, Tony Coleman, also won at HIRW in 2003 with his previous Euphoria – a J/120.

Hamilton Island resort poolIt is also notable that a majority of Euphoria’s crew (six out of ten) are ladies – so she also became quite a popular boat at the various social events held on Hamilton Island during Race Week. Lots of fun was had by all!

Day 1- racing began in idyllic conditions, excited and some nervous crews facing the prospect of a 25-30 knot sou’easters and strong tide making for a wild downwind run from the narrow start in Dent Passage.  The fleet handled the fresh conditions over the 24nm course reasonably well, save for a few broaches by some.

Day 2- four hours after the original scheduled start and with the entire fleet moved to open water on the southwestern side of the island, the first start on day three got underway near Surprise Rock in a light south-east breeze.

Hamilton IslandColeman’s J/133 EUPHORIA from Sydney won at Race Week in 2011 and so far they are on track to repeat the success in the Racer/Cruiser division with 1-4-1 scores. Owner/driver Coleman says their results are down to a good crew and the boat being an all-rounder. “The boat performs in most conditions; it’s happy in the strong winds and reasonable in the light stuff. Today was very pleasant, a 10 knot breeze and nice sunny skies. What more could you ask for?”

Day 3- the winter tradewinds returned to the Whitsundays on the penultimate day of competition, allowing for an expanded schedule to make up for some races missed due to light winds mid-week.

Coleman’s J/133 Euphoria was on either side of a tug-o-war in the Racer/Cruiser division, with the team dismayed by a 10th in the first race followed by a massive change of fortune in the second race of the day, winning by a comfortable margin to continue to lead class.

J/160 sailing Hamilton Island Race WeekDay 4- Crews from Tasmania to Western Australia to the American classic Dorade on a Southern Hemisphere odyssey used what was left in the tank in the sou’east tradewinds 15-18 knots to firm up a divisional placing, or just see out the series in spectacular North Queensland winter sailing conditions.  
 
All week the battle raged in the Racer/Cruiser division between Coleman’s J/133 EUPHORIA from the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron and Adrian Walters’ Little Nico from Middle Harbour.

“Little Nico is a seriously fast boat- it just disappeared over the horizon – but we managed to sail to our handicap and we are very happy with our result,” said Coleman on Saturday afternoon. “The boat’s been here once before, back in 2011. She’s 13 years-old and we have a majority of women crew so we are probably a bit unusual in that respect. It does make us quite popular in the evenings! We had a really good range of conditions over the week. We only lost the one day with no wind and the rest of the time it was decent sea breezes.”

Of note, Stephen Everett’s J/160 SALACIA just four points shy of the podium, settling for 5th place in her Cruising Division I class.  For more AUDI Hamilton Island Race Week sailing information


J/111 Sweeny from The Netherlands- BreskensJ/111 SWEENY Wins @ Breskens Sailing Weekend
(Breskens, The Netherlands)- The forecast for this year’s Breskens Sailing Weekend was not far off the mark.  The three days were characterized by generally light winds in the 5-8 kts range, with two of the days starting off postponed, waiting for the wind to build into a race-able breeze for the fleets sailing on the two course- A & B.

On the final day, Course A PRO Walther de Block was forced to shorten the first race. “I hoisted the S-flag. It took more than an hour before the sailors arrived at the first buoy and that is too long. The second race was better and we managed to run the maximum number of seven races this weekend. A great achievement given the tough circumstances!”  Course B sailors were also able to get in seven races over the weekend.

J/122 sailing off Breskens, The NetherlandsAll in all, it was a nice weekend, for the one-design fleet of J/111s as well as the IRC classes.  Winning the J/111’s was Hans Zwijnenburg’s SWEENY, fresh off their win in the J/CUP held a fortnight ago in Torquay, United Kingdom.  Certainly, they are on a roll, having won most of the races.  Taking 2nd was Jorg Sigg’s LALLEKONING and in 3rd position was Sebastien de Liedekerke’s DJINN.

In the IRC Two-handed class, taking the silver for the weekend was Tom De Jonghe’s J/105 DJ.

There were several J/crews sailing in IRC 3 Class.  In the end, it was tough battle against light-air flyers.  Finishing 4th was Rene van Quekelberghe’s J/97 JAI HO, 6th was Bart Wauters J/92 JOLO, and 7th was Dimitri Vanvyve’s J/105 JUGGERNAUT.

Follow Breskens Sailing Weekend on Facebook here  For more Breskens Sailing Weekend information


J/70 sailing off ChicagoROSEBUD Romps @ J/70 Verve Cup Regatta
(Chicago, IL)- Great Lakes J/70 sailors were treated to two great days of sailing on Lake Michigan last weekend.  Other the three-day event, eleven races were run by host Chicago YC Belmont Station Race Committee and PRO team.  In the end, the regatta came down to a duel between Pam Rose’s ROSEBUD crew and Jim Prendergast’s USA 167 crew, with Rose’s team taking the regatta win.

J/70 sailing off ChicagoEighteen teams from Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois participated in the regatta.  The win was not an easy one for Rose’s ROSEBUD crew that included Match Racing World Champion Taylor Canfield trimming main and calling tactics.  Their first four races were a 4-1-8-5.  However, from there on end they nearly ran the table, getting settled into better starts, more consistent speed and excellent crew work, compiling four 1sts in their last 7 races to take the regatta with 34 pts total.

Starting off with all top five finishes in the first six races was Jim Prendergast’s crew on USA 167.  Then, after a disappointing 7th in race 7, they seemed to have been shocked into drinking a can of Popeye’s “whupass” and rattled off a 1-2-3-1 to close out the regatta and grab the silver position on the podium.

J/70 Verve Cup winners- RosebudBehind the top two players, it was quite the rumble going on for the balance of the top five.  All three teams were playing the game of “chutes & ladders”, winning races, getting top three scores, then dropping like a stone in next race.  After the dust settled on Sunday afternoon, it was Mark & Sarah Renz’s BERTEAU GROUP that closed the deal and snagged the bronze with 52 pts total.  

Taking the fourth spot and winning the Corinthians Division was Bob Willis’ RIP RULLAH with 58 pts.  Five points back to take fifth place and 2nd in Corinthians was Martin Johnsson’s AQUAHOLIKS with 63 pts and 6th overall/ 3rd in Corinthians was Jake Christy’s PALE HORSE with 66 pts.  Follow Chicago YC Verve Cup on Facebook here   For more Verve Cup J/70 Regatta sailing information


J/97 sailing Dartmouth Regatta off EnglandJ/Crews Loving Dartmouth Regatta!
(Dartmouth, England)- The Dartmouth Regatta is a great way to end the summer sailing season along the south coast of the United Kingdom.

Set in the beautiful West Country, the sailing regatta forms part of a larger event that includes rowing championships and has many onshore attractions, a true British Summer festival!

Many J/Teams attended the regatta this year, some fresh from the J/Cup, other’s post-Fastnet race finish, some locally based and other’s travelling from afar.

The weather was perfect for rowing and beach activities, but not so good for sailing.  For example, 2/3 of day 2 and all of day 3 lost to lack of wind. Race day 1 saw three races sailed in 8-15 knots, day 2 just one race in 7-10 knots. The final day saw two races completed by 1330 in a 6-11 knot breeze.

The J/Clan had great success, J/DREAM prevailed, reversing the Nationals result with EAT SLEEP J REPEAT in the J/88 battle. Peter Symonds J/112E J’OUVERT was declared top Royal Dart boat under IRC.

Simon Perry’s J/109 JIRAFFE team completed their 2017 JIRAFFE Safari with first place in the hotly contested fleet.

Bob Baker and his Lymington-based team sailed their J/97 JAYWALKER to a hard-fought victory in IRC 3 Class.

New to the circuit were the J/122 BLACK DOG and the new J/122e TIGH SOLIUS from Hamble. Despite perhaps trying a little too hard on day one, both boats showed nice bursts of speed, hinting at great future potential.

The superb hospitality and organization of the Royal Dart Yacht Club, the Kingswear Marina, and the two towns of Kingswear and Dartmouth, will ensure that most will return in 2018!


J/80 sailing off FranceJ/80 Obelix Trophy France
(Bénodet, France)- Created in 1971 by Dominique le Page and Erwan Quéméré, the Obelix Trophy that took place from August 25th to 27th has become over the years an essential rendezvous for all those who sail during the summer in France.

The event takes place every year and brings together J/80s and over 100 other sailboats on the Bénodet Lake. The Obelix Trophy, also counts for the overall season championship, the J/80 Coupe de France.

This year’s event enjoyed the most beautiful sailing conditions in a wonderful place! 

Reveling in the conditions was Damien Fortini’s crew on J-GANTESQUE from CN Lorient.  His crew consisted of Stephane Brouillet, Anne Le Gouguec, Julien Le Granvalet, and Nathan Meric-Pons- a mostly Lorient-based crew.  However, their record of 2-1-5-1 for 9 pts meant they had to win on a tie-breaker, based on number of 1sts, over Anne Phelipon’s NAVIGATLANTIQUE crew from Societe Regate Rochelaises that had a 1-3-2-3 tally.  Anne’s crew consisted of Bertrand Nun, Thomas Haddouche, and Loig Leon.

Rounding the top three for the regatta was Xavier Tinel’s team from CN Lorient on JEROBOAM MARINE LORIENT (Christophe Audic, Christophe Dreyer and Julien Bregegere).  Their record of 3-5-1-2 for 11 pts meant they were just two points off the pace!  For more J/80 Obelix Trophy sailing information


J/105 winners- Good Trade- Nicole BreaultJ/Crews Enjoy Sunny Ted Hood Regatta
(Marblehead, MA)- How nice can sailing possibly be off Marblehead, MA in the summer time?   Sometimes amazing, as was the case this past weekend for the annual Ted Hood Regatta.  Fleets of J/70s, J/105s and PHRF handicap boats enjoyed three days of racing with winds below ten knots, with plenty of sun! 

The event was hosted by the trio of famous Marblehead clubs- Boston YC, Eastern YC and Corinthian YC- with each club hosting a circle for the various fleets.

Following on his win in the J/70 Corinthian Nationals at Buzzards Bay Regatta, Brian Keane’s SAVASANA seems to be developing a lot of momentum going into the AUDI J/70 World Championship that starts in a fortnight at YC Costa Smeralda’s facility in Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy. 

With Stu McNay, USA Olympic 470 sailor and World Champion, as his tactician, Keane’s crew could seem to do no wrong, except for one nearly catastrophic 12th place in the 4th race.  They won five of the seven races to finish with 19 pts and the regatta win!

Hot on their tail all weekend long was Bruce Golison’s crew from California racing MIDLIFE CRISIS- sailing by far the most consistent series in the top five with all finishes in the top 4!  While never winning a race, Golison’s crew ended up with 21 pts for the silver.  Taking the bronze with 23 pts total was Peter Duncan’s high-powered RELATIVE OBSCURITY crew, coming off a 2nd in the J/70 Europeans in the United Kingdom and having won the finale of the ALCATEL J/70 Cup in Italy with all of Europe’s top J/70 sailors competing.  Rounding out the top five were Bruno Pasquinelli’s crew from the Fort Worth Boat Club in Texas in 4th place and Tom Bowen’s REACH AROUND team from Annapolis YC in 5th place.

In the J/70 Corinthians Division, it was Tyler Doyle’s USA 245 that took honors with 60 pts total, followed by Stein Skanne’s SHRED in 2nd with 62 pts and Frank McNamara’s CHINOOK in 3rd with 63 pts- close, eh??  Those results, literally, came down to the last race and the last leg of the regatta!

Meanwhile, in the J/105 one-design class, it looked like it was just about a “walk-in-the-park” for Nicole Breault & Bruce Stone’s GOOD TRADE.  The J/105 team from San Francisco, skippered by Nicole Breault, dominated the Marblehead fleet with a 1-3-5-2-1-1-1 scoreline for 14 points. Her team consisted of Dave Marshall at bow, Halsey Richartz at mast and tactics, Casey Williams at pit and jib trim, Jamie Ewing at main, and co-owner Bruce Stone at spin trim.

The top local team skipperedd by Fred deNapoli on ALLEGRO SEMPLICITA was 13 points behind with 27 points, followed by Matthew Pike and Dave Nelson’s GOT QI with 35 points.

Nicole and Bruce are on a roll in the J/105 class, having won three regattas on SF Bay (St Francis YC Spring One Design, SF Bay J/Fest and SF Yacht Club Resin Regatta), plus Cedar Point One-Design, Storm Trysail Block Island Race Week, Buzzards Bay Regatta and now the Ted Hood Regatta- the latter two skippered by Nicole.

Nicole commented on their regatta, ”It was great to get back to Marblehead and its picturesque harbor and its strong racing heritage. I remember coming here to race in the USYRU Bemis championship in the 1980s and the 420 North Americans in the early 1990s.  So, it was fun to return in a big-boat and run into many friends from those years. The hospitality was terrific and we plan to be back in a few years for the J/105 North Americans!”

In the world of PHRF handicap racing, there were plenty of stories to tell and, like their one-design colleagues, many “shoulda-coulda-woulda’s” going around the race track. 

In PHRF 1 Class, J/teams dominated the top five overall.  Gary Weisberg’s J/111 HEATWAVE took 2nd, Tom Mager’s J/122 GIGI was 3rd, Ed Kaye’s J/111 PRAVDA was 4th, and Ben Chigier’s J/122 ESCAPE VELOCITY was 5th.

In PHRF Class 2, Dan Boyd & Mitch Wiest’s J/109 WILDTHING closed out their regatta with double bullets, wishing they had found that formula earlier in the series.  Nevertheless, they ended up 4th, only 5 points out of first place!  Tough fleet they were in!

PHRF 3 Class saw Ward Blodgett & Liz Smith’s J/33 SIROCCO earn their handicap-racing debut to take second place in class!

Then, in PHRF 4 Class, celebrating the 40th Anniversary of the J/24 was none other than Dave Smith’s J/24 AIRODOODLE, dominating with six 1sts in seven races!  Wow, a fast J/24 is forever young!  Peter Pappas’ J/80 AIRPLAY completed J domination of the class, taking second with just 12 pts.  For more Ted Hood Regatta sailing information


King Harbor YC Race WeekJ/70’s Cruz King Harbor Regatta!
(King Harbor, CA)- Here is the “pitch” for the King Harbor YC Summer Regatta…
“Welcome Racers, come race with the whales (the cetacean kind, not the Wall St types) on a two-day premier sailing regatta using windward-leeward legs, Saturday & Sunday, in the scenic waters between Hermosa Beach and the Manhattan Beach piers. All PHRF classes, One-designs, J/70s, Farr 40s, etc… are invited. Beer included on the docks! With Rum tastings upstairs. Plus, a complimentary huge taco bar with live band after the races Saturday (dancing encouraged!). Trophy presentation and hors d’oeuvres on Sunday. Complimentary docking provided at KHYC.” 

Sounds good, right?  No question, that is a very attractive proposition to many sailors.

Heeding the call of duty and looking forward to yet another weekend of fun were the J/70 SoCal fleet!

Wow, what a circuit they enjoy between Santa Barbara in the north to San Diego in the south.  Eight boats sailed the event and enjoyed seven races over the two-day weekend!  

A new name and team leaped to the front of the fleet, James Murrell’s HUCKLEBERRY from the host King Harbor YC won the event by just the “hair of their chinny, chin, chin.”  For the top three boats in the regatta, it was an up and down affair.  Murrell’s HUCKLEBERRY had two 1sts, three 2nds in their seven race scoreline to win with 12 pts.  Pushing them hard all weekend-long was Craig Tallman’s JAYA, a fellow KHYC member, winning three races, but not enough to overcome their tough closing tally of a 4-1-6 to have to settle for second overall.  Third was a very competitive youth team comprised of Robert Garret’s Newport Harbor YC team on SLOOP JOHN B; winning the first race and hanging in to secure the bronze on the podium.  Rounding out the top five were Anthony Collins’ FLY from KHYC in 4th and Curt Johnson’s AVET 2.01 in 5th from California YC.

In the PHRF A Class, it was the J/92 H2 BLUE sailed by Ross Moore from King Harbor YC that placed third.
For more Kings Harbor J/70 Regatta sailing information


J/70 Danish League winnersHorsens SC Triumphs @ Aarhus- J/70 Danish League
(Aarhus, Denmark)- The 2017 season’s third league match in the 1st Division ended last weekend in the spectacular sailing location of Aarhus.  The sailors loved enjoying a sunny summer day, sailing in front of DOKK1 in Aarhus.  The difficult urban sailing conditions throughout the competition gave the sailors a lot of challenges, and for some, rather frustrating wind conditions when massive windshifts would roll across the course and upset the standings!

Horsens, Hellerup, KDY and the defending masters from Frederikshavn, were the top four teams in the event. For this quartet, everything came down to the final race to determine the top three! Both KDY and Hellerup scored 6’s on the final day to negatively affect their chances of winning, but not affecting their chances to at least get on the podium.  In the end, Horsens young crew scored a 3rd in their last race to secure the win at Aarhus over Frederikshavn by two pts.  Never recovering from their 6th score in race 10, KDY had to settle for third place just 2 pts in arrears of the silver.  

There were a lot of nerves on the four young Horsens boys (Mikkel Hougaard, Jeppe Bregendahl, Andreas Skjerning and skipper Jakob Nikolajsen), but they kept their heads cool, and secured victory for their club!

J/70 sailing Danish Sailing League“We were in the groove and we were confident of sailing well. We had good speed and good tactics, luckily!  We knew we had to avoid a bad race.  It’s been funky and exciting racing with the winds jumping all over the place and up and down in strength.  It is great to celebrate our win with so many people from our club, it was absolutely indescribable,” said Horsens crew Mikkel Hougaard.

Horsens Sejklub has been in the league’s 1st division since 2015, but has never been on the podium, nor even near it!

The Frederikshavn Sejklub ended up 2nd, but could rejoice in the fact they had extended their lead for the overall series after their scores at Stuer, Brejning, and Aarhus.  

“It was a cool competition, a bold backdrop and close sailing. The sailing conditions were difficult- almost impossible- but at the end of the day we took 2nd. We’re happy,” said captain Kris Houmann from Frederikshavn.

As a result, after the three events, Frederikshavn has 5 pts, a commanding lead for this series!  Sitting in second is KDY with 11 pts, third is Kerteminde Sejklub with 14 pts, fourth is Horsens Sejklub with 18 pts, and fifth place also sitting on 18 pts is Skovshoved Sejklub.

The final and decisive 1st division event will be sailed in Skovshoved from the 15th to 17th September.  

Sailing Photo Credits: Camilla Hylleberg Photography
Live from Susanne Salminen + Jonathan Bay. Media credit to Risk It Media Sports Marketing.
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J/70 Malmo sailing teamMalmö Surprises Swedish J/70 Sailing League!
(Jönköping, Sweden)- The third round of Allsvenskan Sailing (the Swedish J/70 Sailing League) was settled this past weekend on Munksjön in central Jönköping. And surprisingly, it was Malmö SS that took home victory, only one point ahead of the heavy regatta favorites-  KSSS (the Royal Swedish YC).

“This feels fantastic. We managed to get together a team just two days before starting,” says Per-Håkan Persson from the Malmö SS team.  That is even more of a shocker for the rest of the Swedish sailing league crews!  In other words, the Malmo crew were a pretty talented collection of sailors.  However, do know the team are excellent J/24 sailors that have raced “mano-a-mano” against the world’s best J/24 competitors for years!  

There was no question the Malmo team upset the status quo that saw KSSS and the 2016 Champion Cape Crow YC from Gothenburg fighting for their lives to figure out how to stay in front of the Malmo SS team!  Nevertheless, the Malmo SS team won no less than seven races in the total of thirteen races sailed!!  Impressive, to say the least against the firepower assembled by their erstwhile competitors at KSSS and CCYC!

J/70 Swedish sailorsIn the end, Malmo won by just one point over the powerful KSSS team that had finally gotten their momentum going, winning five of their last six races! They were the only team to even have a “snowballs chance in hell” of succeeding to overcome the fast-sailing Malmo team.  Third was Cape Crow YC’s notoriously fast team that somehow had a hard time sailing on the lake in Jönköping.  

As a result, the overall season series has one more event to close out the season finale.  Currently, after three events in Strangnas, Ekero, and Jonkoping, the KSSS have posted a 1-1-2 for an almost unassailable lead for the 2017 Swedish Sailing League series.  Three points back are their arch-rivals, the Cape Crow YC that have a 2-2-3 for 7 pts total.  A long way back in third place is Hjuviks BK team with a 3-13-4 for 20 pts total.  However, that means it has become a battle royale for the final spot on the podium for the season series!  Just 2 pts back in 4th is Ornskoldsviks SS with 22 pts and in 5th place is the rapidly ascending Malmo SS with an outrageous 17-6-1 for 24 pts.  However, don’t discount the fact that sitting in the hunt just 1 pt further back in 6th is Ekoln SK with a 14-3-8 for 25 pts.

Watch some of the race-by-race action of the Swedish J/70 Sailing League on Facebook here (it is all commentary in Swedish):
https://www.facebook.com/allsvenskansegling/videos/2003785933239210/
https://www.facebook.com/allsvenskansegling/videos/2003795436571593/
https://www.facebook.com/allsvenskansegling/videos/2003998443217959/
https://www.facebook.com/allsvenskansegling/videos/2004216026529534/
https://www.facebook.com/allsvenskansegling/videos/2004251383192665/

Follow the Swedish J/70 Sailing League on Facebook here   For more Swedish J/70 Sailing League information


J/70 Swiss sailing league winnersCN Versoix Tops Swiss J/70 Sailing Challenge League
(Davos, Switzerland)- The final of the Swiss Sailing Challenge League took place in Davos on the Davosersee. Reliable thermal winds and the opportunity to sail directly in front of the shore were the best prerequisites for a sailing spectacle. In the final showdown for the top three teams to qualify for the Swiss Super League for 2018 were six teams with a mathematical possibility of qualifying.

While the top two teams, the Segelclub Zürich-Enge and the Club Nautique de Versoix, could hardly be overtaken, the third-place Yachtclub Kreuzlingen had to defend itself against their pursuers from Murten, Männedorf and Thalwil.

After three days of sailing with excellent sailing conditions, the final winner of the regatta as well as the overall season series was decided in the last race and the last leg to the finish!  

Three clubs, the Yachtclub Kreuzlingen, Thalwil and Cham still had chances to win the fourth round of the Swiss Sailing Challenge League.

J/70 Swiss sailing leagueHowever, the overall victory for all four events- Lucerne, Romanshorn, Estavayer and Davos- still stood on a razor’s edge. Both the Segelclub Zürich-Enge and the Club Nautique de Versoix were able to win the overall Swiss Sailing League Cup!

In the 24th and last race, the showdown took place. For starters, Kreuzlingen, Thalwil and Cham were fighting each other for the regatta win.  Meanwhile, the series leaders had their own battle going on!  

Versoix and Zurich-Enge sailed their own race, forgetting about anyone else. It was primarily “who beat who” to determine the 2017 Swiss Sailing Challenge League winner. Both teams were locked into a match race and tried to keep the competitors behind them. In the 24th and final race, Versoix was second behind Cham at the first windward mark.  However, on the last downwind leg, Versoix attacked the leaders and took the lead shortly before the finish line!  This meant Versoix secured the season championship.

J/70s sailing on Swiss mountain lake- Davos, SwitzerlandAs a result of the last, wildly challenging races, it was Segel Club Cham that won the Davos event on a tie-breaker over YC Kreuzlingen at 32 pts each; with SCC winning on countback.  Third was Segler-Vereinigugn Thalwil a very narrow 1.8 pts further back with a total of 33.8 pts.

Therefore, the final outcome for the Challenger series (Luzem, Romanshorn, Estavayer, Davos) had CN Versoiz winning  with a 2-1-3-4 tally for 10 pts.  Second was SC Enge with a 1-4-1-5 for 11 pts.  Third was YC Kreuzlingen with a 5-2-5-2 for 14 pts (symmetry there??).  Rounding out the top five were SC Thalwil with 21 pts in 4th and SC Murten in 5th with 23 pts.

Celebrating its 50th anniversary on Lake Davos, the Davos Sailing & Surf Club was overwhelmed with the enthusiastic turnout of sailors for the Swiss J/70 Sailing League.  It was a great sailing festival for sailors from all over Switzerland in Davos; a special place in the world most famously notable for its incredibly challenging skiing terrain in the world of F.I.S. snow-skiing world championships.  Sailing Photo credits- Claudia Somm   Follow the Swiss J/70 Sailing League on Facebook here  For more Swiss J/70 Sailing League information


J/Community
What J/sailors and friends are doing around the world

Puget Sound, Seattle, WA* Dave Schmidt, the Sail-World.com USA Editor based in Seattle, WA has a wonderful story to tell about his participation in the sport of sailing on a friends’ J/80..

“As a lifelong sailor from a sailing-obsessed family, I sometimes forget that not everyone has been sailing since they could walk. Mind you, I’m certainly not professing to be any sort of polished tactician or accomplished skipper, but I do know how to trim sails, drive, stand watch and run a foredeck, and I’ve also been around sailing culture long enough to (more or less) be able to step onto a new boat and (hopefully) not cause too many headaches. After all, sailors are sailors the world over (read: salty), and odds are reasonably solid that if you can hang at one yacht club, you’ll be OK at the next.

However, this summer a good friend bought his first boat, and I had the opportunity to watch firsthand as a great bunch of newer sailors gelled into a winning team over the course of the racing season.

J/80s sailing World Championship- Hamble, EnglandWhile I wasn’t on board for the full summer’s racing program due to work obligations and a distracting mountain-climbing problem, I was there enough to see and appreciate this team’s impressive improvement curve as the boat’s leadership settled into a successful groove and people learned and refined their onboard roles and gained some miles in the new boat.

For example, during the first few races of the season, the crew tended to want to play outside their roles, leading the skipper to try and actively ‘manage’ everyone’s jobs, even though his hands were more than full with driving. Fortunately, the skipper is also a whip-smart engineer at one of Seattle’s bigger tech companies, and he wisely parlayed the strong leadership and management lessons gleaned from his professional life into bolstering our team. Specifically, one mid-season Wednesday night, instead of assuming the tiller, he announced a crew shake-up that would see our tactician driving, our skipper calling tactics, and other people shuffled to new jobs (I somehow stayed on the mainsheet, which is A-OK with me). The results were dramatic.

Rather than mid-fleet and ‘back-of-the-congo-line’ finishes, we took a bullet in our first race, promptly followed by a second place in race two. High fives were exchanged, but it wasn’t until we consistently started repeating these results that the full fruits of our skipper’s leadership moves-ncoupled with the crew’s swelling experience, confidence levels and hard work-became evident.

And that’s to say nothing of the big improvements and growth that all sailors onboard (myself included) experienced as we started gelling into a can-do crew. These guys might not have spent their summer vacations taking sailing junior-sailing lessons, but the sheer level of psych and “beginner’s eyes” excitement that these guys brought to the dock, week after week, was a cool thing to see and experience.

J/80 Worlds- Hamble, EnglandWhile there’s no danger of us winning any world-championship titles in the near future, odds are good that we will be the boat in our class to beat next summer on Puget Sound.

For my part, I had a great look at what it’s like for a relatively green sailor to step up and buy a sportboat, become a skipper, and build and nurture a crew capable of disrupting the order of things in a local class. Having spent more than a little bit of time trying to diagnose and solve our initial teething pains in my head on my morning runs, none of my solutions for improving performance were as elegant as our skipper’s decision to relinquish the tiller and focus solely on tactics, while also placing other crewmembers in positions that best played to their strengths. I’ve seen some smart moves on boats over the years, but this ranks as one of the more impressive things that I’ve seen in a while.

So, while I’ve been sailing for 41 of my 40 years on this lonely planet, I’m walking away from this summer’s sailing with newfound appreciation for the kind of leadership skills that can be learned onshore and brought aboard. Moreover, I’m also walking away with a much better appreciation for what can happen when enthusiasm and psych are given the right environment to learn, grow and thrive.” Sailing photo credits- Paul Wyeth/ PWPictures.com

Sail Newport* Sail Newport Christens New Sailing Center! Sail Newport, along with a slate of dignitaries, officials and supporters, celebrated the opening of its new Mid-Park Marine Education and Recreation Center today.  Over 200 people joined Executive Director Brad Read for a ribbon-cutting ceremony, including Governor Gina Raimondo, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM) Director Janet Coit, former Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed, Representative Marvin Abney and Rob MacMillan, co-founder of 11th Hour Racing among other city and state leaders.  
    
“This is a center truly worthy of the Ocean State,” Raimondo said. “The state-of-the-art sustainable design will allow Sail Newport to bring the magical experience of being out on the water to more Rhode Islanders. In particular, the center will teach our younger generation that these natural resources are gifts we must protect and preserve for the future.”
 
The 8,500 square foot LEED-compliant building located in Fort Adams State Park was conceived, designed, engineered and built with support and guidance from the State of Rhode Island and many construction and sustainability partners.
 
In addition to sustainably-resourced materials and a flood-resilient design, the new center operates with energy-efficient heating and cooling, solar power, and a rainwater harvesting system for irrigation, boat wash and restroom water.
 
Sail Newport center- ribbon cutting ceremony“I am thrilled to celebrate the completion of the Mid-Park Education and Recreation Center at historic Fort Adams State Park – a place of profound beauty and culture and home to exceptional recreation, facilities, and marquee events,” says Coit. “Beautiful waters and green-spaces, breathtaking vistas, and world-class boating – all of which surround you at Fort Adams- are hallmarks of Rhode Island. They are an intrinsic part of life here. And they attract streams of people and opportunity for our state,” she adds.
 
“Kudos to Sail Newport and all partners involved in making this project a reality and continuing to enhance and promote Fort Adams as a destination. I look forward to the many public programs and opportunities Mid-Park will offer- and the love of sailing and enjoyment of our parks that it will help inspire,” Coit adds.
 
The growth and progress of Sail Newport, which was founded in 1983 after the loss of the America’s Cup, prompted the organization’s leaders to set a goal five years ago to expand their public access sailing programs and marine education for the community. The new center was designed to facilitate more education with year-round classrooms and restrooms and an upgraded facility in order to offer more public sailing programs and more access to the water for all ages.
 
“The State of Rhode Island, DEM and many generous donors have brought us to this day,” Read says.  “Not only do we now have a sustainable headquarters, this new center will serve the community with more public access sailing programs and access to Narragansett Bay,” he adds.
 
Read notes that the first program to use the new center will be a fourth-grade learn-to-sail educational initiative with the Pell Elementary School which starts on September 18.  The program was developed by Sail Newport and Donna Kelly, a Newport Public School teacher and former board member of Sail Newport, and Superintendent of Schools- Colleen Burns Jermain.
 
The unique program will align with the public school’s fourth-grade core curriculum in the areas of math, science, social studies and art.  In addition to the on-the-water classroom of sailing instruction, the new indoor classrooms will house students for the land-based curriculum portions.  
 
Sail Newport also partnered with 11th Hour Racing for the design of the building to include sustainability at the heart of its sailing center operation and green events and programs. It was announced almost a year ago that 11th Hour Racing granted $1.0 million towards costs for the new center.
 
11th Hour Racing’s Director MacMillan commented, ”We are thrilled to see the grant that 11th Hour Racing awarded to Sail Newport in 2016 come to fruition, with the new Mid-Park Marine Education and Recreation Center ready to welcome and expand Sail Newport’s educational programs, while integrating the message of preservation and maintenance of our ocean and shoreline. Since 2010, 11th Hour Racing has been harnessing the power of sport with an innovative and comprehensive approach, and this new sustainable headquarters is a testament to our core values centered around environmental and social responsibility.”
 
MacMillan adds, “We exist to provide public access sailing programs and services. The new center will have a positive impact on all of our community-based programs that we provide at low cost or no cost to other non-profit organizations. He adds, “Most importantly,” he says, “we hope to inspire all sailors as to the importance of preserving and maintaining our ocean and shoreline.”
Learn more about Sail Newport here.

J/Class yachts in Newport, RI for Worlds* J/Sailors Ruling J/Class!  The first ever J/Class World Championship took place this past week in Newport, RI and was hosted by the New York YC Harbour Court.  Six of the 140 foot (~ 43 meter) sailing yachts participated in the five day event that saw racing take place on Tuesday in a “Navigators Race” inside Narragansett Bay and the next four days offshore in Rhode Island Sound about 4nm southwest of Castle Hill point.  

Not surprisingly, literally every single boat had local talent and local knowledge on board as strategists/ tacticians- virtually all of them were top J/Boats sailors. 

Foremost in everyone’s minds were the two brothers aboard Jim Clark’s HANUMAN- Ken Read (steering) and Brad Read (tactician)- if there was ever a combination of sailors that knows the Bay and the Sound well, it would be them- needless to say both are multiple J/24 World Champions. Their world-famous navigator was none other than Stan Honey- he and his wife Sally have also raced J/105s on the West Coast. They also had Chuck Brown on runners, a Caribbean Champion and raced J/24s and J/30s for years- winning a few Rolex St Thomas Regattas along the way.  Despite all the talent on board, they could only muster a second place.

J/class Lionheart- Anthony Kouton skipperOn the winning boat- LIONHEART- they, too, had a Newporter on-board that was also a J/24 World Champion- Anthony Kouton- feeling perhaps a bit out of his element as a Moth World Champion (foiler), too! Plus, they had aboard Bouwwe Beking from the Netherlands- himself having raced on J/105s and J/109s in the Netherlands.  

As for the third place boat TOPAZ, they “only” had Tony Rey, Scotty Vogel and Peter Holmberg aboard taking up most of their afterguard, plus running the boat as “Crew Boss” (Scotty).  Peter is from the U.S. Virgin Islands, and has raced J/24s, IC/24s, and J/105s over the years as Caribbean and CORT Champion- in addition to being an expert match-racer.  Tony Rey is from Newport and has also raced at World Championship levels on J/24s, J/70s, J/122s, J/105s and others.  Scotty has also raced a wide variety of boats, including J/24s, J/35s, J/105s, J/109s and J/111s.

RANGER had aboard Andrew Cape from the U.K.- a famous Volvo Ocean Race navigator and also guides the mighty RAMBLER 88 for George David.  He is a two-time Round Island (Isle of Wight) Doublehanded winner on a J/44 sailing on Stu Johnstone’s J-HAWK, plus he’s raced quite a few J/24s, J/105s and J/109s in the U.K. over time.

J/Class yachts sailing Worlds off NewportVELSHEDA had some veteran offshore and match-racing team members on board that have raced J/105s and J/80s in various events, such as Tom Dodson, Campbell Field and Don Cowie.  

Finally, Tom Siebel’s crew was practically 100% managed by top J sailors from all parts of the world. Growing up in Wilmette, IL, Tom himself sailed J/24s and out West has owned and race J/105s and J/125s on San Francisco Bay! His navigator was Peter Isler- a regular on the SC 70 PYEWACKET for Roy Disney Jr and has raced J/24s, J/80s, J/105s and J/44s.  Tom Whidden was his strategist, the former President of North Sails, a person that has raced on practically all of the earlier J/Boats, including J/24s, J/29s, J/35s, J/41s, J/105s, J/44s, J/160s, etc.  Francesco de’Angelis from Italy was serving as coach, and raced J/24s and recently J/70s for years- including winning a J/24 World Championship in Capri.  Steve Calder from North Sails Canada has also been J/24 Canadian Champion and has raced J/105s, J/109s, J/35s, J/70s in Canada and the USA.  Vince Brun from North Sails San Diego is a J/24 Champion, West Coast J/70 Champion and has raced just about everything in the J/range including J/105s and J/109s. Sailing photo credits- Onne Van der wal/ Sharon Green/ Ultimate Sailing/ Carlo Borlenghi.
 


J/Cruisers
J Cruisers continue their adventures around the world, below are a selection of most excellent “blogs” written by their prolific publishers.  Some terribly amusing anecdotes and pearls of wisdom are contained in their blogs. Read some! You’ll love it.

* The J/40 HERON REACH sailed by Virginia and Jerry is participating in the Blue Planet Odyssey project and have recently joined them in the Marquesas Islands in the Eastern Pacific.  Learn more about their adventures and experiences here- http://heronreachodyssey.blogspot.com/
Giant whale breaching in front of J/160 SALACIA off Australia's Whitsunday Islands* J/160 SALACIA has been sailing in Australia in the Whitsunday Islands.  Guess who decided to throw themselves across their bow as they cruised comfortably to their next destination?  A giant whale!  Look at this amazing photo!

J/42 cruiser- sailing across Atlantic Ocean* Jim & Heather Wilson just completed a circumnavigation of our “blue planet Earth” in June 2013 on their J/42 CEOL MOR.  Said Jim, “The odyssey of CEOL MOR is over, for now.  We completed our circumnavigation on our J/42 when we crossed our outbound track in Britannia Bay, Mustique. We were, however, still 2,000 nautical miles from home. So we continued on through the Windwards, the Leewards, and then through the British Virgin Islands. After a farewell ‘Painkiller’ at the Soggy Dollar, and a last meal at Foxy’s, we made the 1,275 nautical mile passage to the Chesapeake and completed our port-to-port circumnavigation when we arrived in Annapolis on June 28, 2013. We had been away 1,334 days, completed 259 days of ocean passages, and sailed 30,349 nautical miles (34,925 statute miles). Read more about their adventures in their  well-documented blog here:  http://www.svceolmor.com/SVCeolMor/Welcome.html

* J/160 AVATAR headed for the Caribbean, again, for 2015/ 2016!  We LOVE these updates from our cruising J sailors that continue to criss-cross the Seven Seas. This one comes from Alan Fougere, sailing his beloved J/160 AVATAR.   Alan sent us an email update regards their various improvements and refit to the boat (see above).  They will again be based at Proper Yachts in St John, US Virgin Islands.

Bill & Judy Stellin- sailing J/42 Jaywalker* Bill & Judy Stellin were interviewed about cruising on their J/42 in the Wall St Journal called “Retiring on the Open Sea”.  The Wall St Journal asked Bill to reply to dozens of questions that flooded into the WSJ’s Editor desks. Here’s the update:

Retiring on the Sea: Answering Readers’ Questions
Advice about selecting a boat, ocean crossings, itineraries and safety

Wall St Journal interview- Stellin's Offshore cruising/ sailing retirementThe article in our WSJ Online December retirement report about eight years spent sailing the Mediterranean— “Retiring to the Open Sea”— prompted many questions and comments from readers.  We asked William Stellin, who wrote the story, to answer some of the most common queries.

WSJ- “What kind and make of boat did you use? Looking back, would you have picked a different boat?”

Bill- “In 1995-96, J/Boats of Newport, RI, came out with a new cruiser/racer model, the J/42. We bought hull No. 6 of this popular 42-foot sailboat and named it JAYWALKER. This was our fourth boat since beginning sailing in 1975.

Although long-distance cruising wasn’t what we had in mind when we purchased JAYWALKER, it soon became apparent it had the ability to carry us easily and safely anywhere we wanted to go. Because the boat is light, it sails well in light winds, which means very little motoring is necessary.

People often ask (and argue) about what boat is best for cruising. Any boat that is strong, safe, fast, comfortable and easily handled by two people should fit the bill. One thing for sure, fast is fun—and important when trying to avoid bad weather.”  

READ MORE ABOUT BILL’S INSIGHTFUL COMMENTARY AND THOUGHTS ON WSJ ONLINE HERE

J/42 sailing off France* The J/42 JARANA continues their epic voyage around the Pacific. Continue to read about Bill and Kathy Cuffel’s big adventure cruising the South Pacific headed for New Zealand and points further around the Blue Planet Earth.  Here is their latest update (December 2016) from Bill & Kathy:

“We completed a three year tour of the south pacific and sailed from Hobart Tasmania back to Seattle in the fall of 2012.  After two seasons of local cruising, we decided to truck the boat to Rochester NY.  In the summer of 2015, we sailed out the Saint Lawrence seaway and down the east coast of Nova Scotia and the US, with a few months in the Bahamas that winter.  This past summer, we crossed the Atlantic with stops in Bermuda and the Azores, making landfall in Falmouth, UK.  We have worked down the coast of France, Spain and Portugal and are now in Lagos Portugal.  We plan on passing through the Straits of Gibraltar and spending a couple seasons in the Med.”

Their blog is here: http://www.svjarana.blogspot.com/

* John and Mary Driver are sailing their J/130 SHAZAM for extended cruising in the Atlantic basin. At this time, John and Mary finished their double-handed crossing of the Atlantic, landing in Portugal on their J/130 Shazam after completion of their ARC Rally. Read the latest news at http://www.sailblogs.com/member/shazam/.

J/130 sailing ARC Rally arrives Portugal- leave a message on the sea wall!* Several J/160 owners are island hopping across the world’s oceans, fulfilling life long dreams to cruise the Pacific islands, the Caribbean islands, the Indian Ocean and all points in between.  Anyone for Cape Horn and penguins??  Read more about their adventures and escapades (like our J/109 GAIA, J/42s PAX and JAYWALKER and J/130 SHAZAM friends above).

–  Bill and Susan Grun on the J/160 AVANTE are also sailing in the Pacific archipelago, read more about their great adventures on their blog (http://web.me.com/susangrun).  Read about their latest adventures as they’ve gotten to New Zealand- “Avante Cruises the Pacific”.

Eric and Jenn on the J/160 MANDALAY also sailed the Pacific archipelago, read more on their blog at http://www.sailmandalay.com.  Eric and Jenn are J/World alumni took MANDALAY up and down the West Coast (Mexico, CA), then to the South Pacific and New Zealand.  MANDALAY is back in San Francisco now, and in the J/World fleet–she is available for skippered charters, private instruction, and corporate/executive groups.