Friday, June 28, 2019

FUN Cleveland Race Week

J/70 sailing off Cleveland
PROOF Wins J/120 North Americans
(Cleveland, OH)- Seventy-two teams competed on Lake Erie from June 14-16 in Cleveland Race Week’s One Design Weekend, part of the largest sailing regatta on Lake Erie and one of the largest on the Great Lakes hosted by Edgewater Yacht Club. Racing began on Friday for several classes, with the remainder beginning on Saturday. This year, the regatta included the J/120 National Championship.

Ten fleets competed over the weekend on four racecourses. Conditions were ideal on Friday, with 12-16 kts out of the northwest, sunshine, and 1-2’ waves. Saturday brought 8-12 kts from the southwest, with flat water and a bit of rain for the competitors to deal with. Sunday dawned extremely foggy and glassy; the regatta was placed on a 1-hour delay onshore before racing was entirely abandoned for the day and the regatta concluded.

The J/120 National Championship kicked off on Friday, with what could only be described as champagne sailing conditions. The first race began promptly at 12:00pm.  There were seven boats on the line; the hometown VIVA LA VIDA, Buffalo Yacht Club’s SLEDGE HAMMER, PROOF from Grosse Pointe, and Bayview Yacht Club’s FUNTECH RACING, HOT TICKET, J-HAWKER, and SLEEPING TIGER.
J/120 National Champs
Three races were completed in strong conditions with the slowly dying breeze, each with a different winner. PROOF came out of the day strong with 6 points, followed closely by HOT TICKET with 7 points. Racing on Saturday was more challenging, with 4 races completed in shifty conditions. PROOF solidified their lead with a consistent 2- 2-2-1, placing a six-point gap between them and HOT TICKET in second. Racing in the middle of the fleet got intense, with only 10 points separating 2nd and 5th place at the end of the regatta. FUNTECH RACING placed third with 24 points, HOT TICKET finished second with 19 points, and PROOF became the 2019 J/120 National Champions with 13 points.
J/70 winners
Nine boats sailed in the J/70 class. Winning was Dan Goldberg’s BAZINGA with 14 pts, followed by Tod Sackett’s FM with 18. Rounding out the podium in third place was Dave Kerr’s JILLY BABY.

Marcus Rogers’ WIND MONKEY certainly had the wind at their back all weekend, posting four bullets to win the J/24 class by a landslide.  Second with nearly as good a record was Ryan Lashaway’s RUNNING ON EMPTY with three 2nds.  Third was Mark Sprenger & Ramon Eckert’s ORANGE WHIPE.
J/105 winners
The half-dozen J/105 class also had a winner scoring all aces, with Chip Schaffner’s FALL LINE running the table to take the win.  Second was Robert Mock’s UNBRIDLED and third went to Ron Carson’s DARK’N’STORMY.

Following racing each day, competitors were greeted with live music, great food, and cocktails provided by sponsors Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Pusser’s Rum, and Regatta Craft Mixers. The Race Committee did an outstanding job on all four courses and in all weather conditions. Following two days off, Cleveland Race Week starts up again with the Junior Day on Wednesday, and Women’s, Doublehanded and RC Boat Racing Wednesday evening. Offshore Racing will begin on Thursday evening and continue through the weekend.  Follow Cleveland Race Week on Facebook here  For more Cleveland Race Week sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Kiel Week Preview

J/70s sailing Kiel, Germany (Kiel, Germany)- Even in its 138th year, Kieler Woche still plays a virtuoso performance on the keyboard of festivity: Kieler Woche is the largest summer festival in Northern Europe.

From the 22nd to 30th of June, more than three million visitors from all over the world will be diving into the colorful and multi-facetted life of Kieler Woche.

Around 2,000 events in areas of culture, sailing, summer festival, entertainment, science, industry and sport come together to form a maritime symphony. Visitors are promised nine days of high spirits in the far North of Europe.

The sailing program is quite remarkable and it is all hosted and orchestrated by Kieler YC, Norddeutscher Regatta Verein, and Verein Seglerhaus am Wansee. There are three J/One-Design classes that are participating- J/24s, J/70s, and J/80s.

In the twenty-eight-boat J/24 class are teams from the USA, Sweden, Germany, and Great Britain.  The leading teams may include Duncan McCarthy’s MADELEINE from the U.K., the Swedish team of Per-Hakan Persson on FRONT RUNNER, the American team of Keith Whittemore on FURIO (which includes Brian Thomas, Shelby Milne, Mark Rodgers & Willem van Waay), and the German teams of JJONE (Frithjof Schade), VITESSE (Manfred Konig), RUNNING MEN (Stephan Mais), HENK (Frank Schonfeldt), HUNGRIGER WOLF (Fabian Damm), UNITED 5 (Jan Kahler), and HANSA PROJEKT (Hauke Kruss).

The largest one-design sportboat class at Kieler Woche is the forty-two-boat J/70 class; that dramatic growth is a result of the Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga that has standardized on the world’s most successful one-design sportboat class- the International J/70 Class. Teams that are attending come from Austria, Chile, Denmark, Germany, Switzerland, and Sweden. Some of the leading teams may include Claas Lehmann’s ONKEL HANNE and Henning Frenzel’s JOYCE, amongst others.

The J/80 Class has fifteen participants from Germany, the Netherlands, and Denmark. The leading team will certainly be Germany’s Martin Menzner and his PIKE crew of Nils Beltermann, Lars Keilwitz, and Christian Drews.  For more Kiel Week sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

J/Crews Sweep Van Isle 360 Race!

J/120 sailing Van Isle 360 (Victoria/ Nanaimo, BC)- The biennial Van Isle 360 Race was an epic adventure and experience for nearly a dozen J/Teams that participated in the 2019 edition.  Comprised of nine individual legs that circumnavigate the outrageously picturesque Vancouver Island off the Pacific coastline of British Columbia, the race was full of drama as each leg completed and teams fought for good overall results.

The combination of the nine legs determined the class winners as well as the overall winner.  The legs were:
  1. Nanaimo to Comox- 36.9nm
  2. Comox to Campbell River- 27.6nm
  3. Deepwater Bay to Hardwicke Island- 24.2nm
  4. Hardwicke Island to Telegraph Cove- 41.0nm
  5. Telegraph Cove to Port Hardy- 28.7nm
  6. Port Hardy to Winter Harbour- 69.1nm
  7. Winter Harbour to Ucluelet- 138.1nm
  8. Ucluelet to Victoria Harbour- 98.2nm
  9. Victoria Harbour to Nanaimo- 59.9nm
That made for a total of at least 486.8nm down the rhumbline. The fleet experienced the standard extremes of weather- from complete glass outs, waiting for breeze, to 40 to 50 kt microbursts ripping down from the mountains peaks on Vancouver Island transited across the notorious Johnstone Straits.

In the end, J/Teams led sweeps in the two largest big boat divisions. In the PHRF Division 1, winning was B. Chan and A. Smyth’s J/111 65 RED ROSES II with 19 pts and also taking 1st PHRF Overall (six classes). Tied going into the last race from Victoria to Nanaimo, it was Scott Campbell’s J/121 RIVA winning the final leg to take second in class over Bill Fox’s J/160 JAM that settled for third place.

Then, in PHRF Division 2 the final leg became a complete cliffhanger for the two leading J/109s. Indeed, they both ended up tied on 25 pts each. Winning on count-back was T. Sitar’s J/109 SERENDIPITY over Mark Hansen’s J/109 MOJO. Completing the podium with the bronze medal was C & J Wolfe’s J/120 SHEARWATER and taking fifth was Tolga Cezik’s J/109 LODOS.  For more Van Isle 360 Race sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Windy New York YC Annual Regatta

J/99 sailing New York YC regatta
(Newport, RI)- With the exception of maybe a little more sun and a little less rain, Robin Team has a hard time imagining a better Father’s Day. The J/122 skipper from Lexington, N.C., spent Sunday sailing with his two sons in testing conditions and putting the finishing touches on a near flawless weekend of racing at the 165th edition of the New York Yacht Club Annual Regatta including the Swan American Regatta.

“What better way to way to spend Father’s Day than racing offshore with your two sons and getting the opportunity to walk across the stage at the New York Yacht Club,” says Team. He didn’t add winning, but maybe he didn’t have to. That was merely the cherry on top.

J/122 TeamworkThe Teamwork crew, which also includes Team's brother, started the long weekend with a convincing win in IRC 4 in Friday’s Around-the-Island Race, and carried that winning feeling into two days of buoy racing in big breeze and cresting waves on Rhode Island Sound. Teamwork won three races yesterday and the first race today. With the overall title all but in the bag, Team and his crew were a little cautious in the final race in order to preserve their assets for Block Island Race Week, which starts a week from Monday.

“We were in a J3 [jib] all day long and we ended up running three different spinnakers based on the conditions,” says Team. “We just changed gears based on the wind intensity. All of that made it really, really fun. Toward the end of the regatta, we got a little bit conservative because we did have a lead and we didn’t want to break anything. So we ran a [smaller high-wind spinnaker] on one leg and ran a [reaching spinnaker] on the final leg to the finish.”

A fourth in that final race was the lone blemish on an otherwise perfect scorecard. But finishing that race overlapped with another competitor after 90 minutes of hard racing just emphasized how competitive it was in IRC 4, which made the overall victory that much sweeter.

“That was one of the beautiful things about this regatta,” says Team. “The rating band was really tight and you knew how you did at the end of the race instead of waiting for the corrected times to come out. It was fun to have two other J/122s there, they were really well-sailed boats, we love sailing against them. The J/111s and the J/44s were all great competition as well. We’ll be back.”

Behind TEAMWORK in the IRC 4 Class comprised of all J/Boats was New York YC Commodore Bill Ketcham’s J/44 MAXINE in second, followed by Andrew & Sedge Ward’s J/111 BRAVO in third place.  Rounding out the top five were two J/122s- Jack Gregg’s TARAHUMARA in 4th and Paul Milo’s ORION in 5th position.
J/109 sailing New York regatta
In the J/109 division, Bill Sweetser’s RUSH defeated a highly competitive fleet with a 3-1-1-2-2 record for 9 pts.  Taking the silver was Carl Olsson’s MORNING GLORY on a tie-breaker at 12 pts each over Ted Herlihy’s GUT FEELING.  The rest of the top five included Tom Sutton’s LEADING EDGE in 4th and Brian Kiley’s GAMBIT in 5th place.

John Thouron’s J/122 DUNDER from Burlington, VT won PHRF 2 Class of nine-boats.  Third was Bob Manchester’s J/120 VAMOOSE and fifth was Abhijeet Lee’s J/111 VARUNA.

PHRF 3 class was loaded with nine J/Teams.  In the end, Jeff Johnstone’s new J/99 AGENT 99 took second place with Mark Lindquist’s J/105 STERLING securing third.  The trio of Joyce/ Reservitz/ Wagner took 5th on their J/105.  Sixth was yet an other J/105, Don Santa’s SANTAS REIGN DEAR from Annapolis, MD and 7th was EC Helme’s J/92S SPIRIT.

PHRF 4 class saw J/crews take 3 of the top 5 spots.  Top boat was Steve Thurston’s J/29 MIGHTY PUFFIN i second.  Fourth was Jack McGuire’s J/29 DIRTY HARRY and fifth went to Daniel Stone’s J/80 HOT STREAK.

In IRC 3 Class racing offshore, Joe Brito’s J/121 INCOGNITO sailed well, improving every race in their first regatta of the year, closing on high note with a 2-1 on the last two races on Sunday.  Sailing photo credits- Bill Shea Photography.  For more New York YC Annual Regatta sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Monday, June 24, 2019

Botín Wins J/80 Campeonato de Espana

J/80 Spain- off Santander
(Santander, Spain)- The forty-three teams that were participating in the 2019 edition of the Campeonato de Espana were treated to simply spectacular sailing conditions in the beautiful bay off Santander, Spain.  Three sunny days, winds rising up to 15-25 kts on the last day, the spectacular backdrop of the snow-capped Pyrenees Mountains off to the southeast made for a spectacular weekend events.

Rising to the occasion to win the regatta in a dominating performance was one of Spain’s top Olympic sailors- the Cantabrian Diego Botín from the Real Club Maritimo de Santander. Botín and his crew on ONO M & G TRESSIS put their stamp of authority on the event by winning four of seven races for an 8 pts net score.
J/80s sailing off Santander, Spain
The pre-regatta favorite, the Cantabrian double J/80 World Champion- José María “Pichu” Torcida- took second place with his RCM Santander team on AILA with 23 pts net.  Just one point behind them on the final step of the podium was Jose Azqueta Arrue on BIOBIZZ with 24 pts net.

Among the Women’s Team, it was the President of the Royal Spanish Sailing Federation- Julia Casanueva- skippering CENTRAL OPTICA that won the Women’s Trophy.  Meanwhile, winning the Under 25 Division was J/80 WORLDS 2019 GETXO skippered by the Basque Nicolás Viar.  Sailing Photo credits- Jesus Lastra
For more Spanish J/80 Sailing Championship Add to Flipboard Magazine.

STC Block Island Race week Preview

Block Island Race Week (Block Island, RI)- One of the highlights of summer sailing in northeast America is Storm Trysail Club’s bi-annual bacchanalian sailing festival known as Block Island Race Week. Sailing from June 23rd to 29th, thousands of sailors migrate to the beautiful island five miles offshore of Rhode Island.  It’s a bit of a pilgrimage for many sailors, some are veterans of more than two dozen BIRW’s; it’s a time to reconnect with old friends, a time to relax and socialize with hundreds of other sailors, enjoy the camaraderie of a shared love for the water, for sailing and for celebrations.

The fleet of 125 boats has 57 J/Teams sailing, by far the dominant brand at the event with nearly half the fleet- 46.0% of the total. There are one-design fleets of J/88s, J/105s, and J/109s, plus teams sailing in ORC and PHRF handicap fleets.

There are a half-dozen J/88s with a number of top crews that should be in the hunt, such as Iris Vogel’s DEVIATION, Justin Scagnelli’s ALBONDIGAS, Laura Weyler’s HIJINKS, and Mike Bruno’s WINGS.

J/105 Good Trade sailing Block IslandAs the largest class in the event, the sixteen-boat J/105 Class has many top Eastern teams ready to do battle leading up to their J/105 North Americans later in the summer off Marblehead, MA. Bruce Stone, together with his wife Nicole Breault, co-own J/105 GOOD TRADE and will be seeking to defend their title as best in fleet and best overall performance at Block Island Race Week. The J/105s will be one of the most competitive fleets at Block Island, with top amateur teams like JINX (Bob Taylor is a past J/105 NA champion) and DEJA VOODOO (Bill Zartler from Texas has been J/105 Midwinters Champion). Then, top pro sailors that own and skipper their boats will certainly be near the top of the leaderboard; such as LOU LOU (sailmaker Paul Beaudin), SOLUTION (David Willis), and RAVEN (David Barron); the latter two own boat yards and their boats are super well-prepped.

J/109s have eight teams participating, such at Tom Sutton’s LEADING EDGE, Carl Olsson’s MORNING GLORY, Robert Schwartz’s NORDLYS, and Bill Sweetser’s RUSH.  These four boats, in particular, have all won major J/109 championships in one way or another.

The thirteen-boat PHRF 1 Class has seven J/crews; including five J/111s (Andrew & Sedge Ward’s BRAVO, Greg Slamowitz’s MANITOU, USMMA’s BLACK DIAMOND, Bill & Jackie Baxter’s FIREBALL, & Ken Comerford’s MONEYPENNY), Dan Heun’s J/122 MOXIEE, and Skip Young’s J/133 DRAGONFLY.

Racing in the eleven-boat PHRF 2 Class will be the new J/99 AGENT 99 skippered by Rod and Jeff Johnstone from Stonington, CT.

Not surprisingly, the fourteen-boat PHRF 3 Class will again see the famous battles from yesteryear between a number of very-well sailed J/29s. The protagonist? You guessed it.  The infamous HUSTLER sailed by John Esposito. The other three J/29s are Jack McGuire’s DIRTY HARRY, Steve Thurston’s MIGHTY PUFFIN, and John Cooper’s COOL BREEZE. Hoping to give them a challenge will be Sam Cushing’s J/80 THE PARTY TREE and John & Corinne Foster’s J/92 SALTIRE.

Six J/Teams are sailing in ORC 2 Class.  Those teams include four J/121s (Don Nicholson’s APOLLO, Greg & Sarah Manning’s SARAH, Joe Brito’s INCOGNITO, & Peter Lewis’ WHISTLER) and two J/122s (Paul Milo’s ORION and the Team family (Robin, Alston Colman) on TEAMWORK.

In the nine-boat Performance Cruising 1 Class are two J/120s (Charles Murphy’s TRUANT and Karen Harris’ CYGNI) and Brian Prinz’s J/125 SPECTRE. In the nine-boat Performance Cruising 2 Class are Richard Eytel’s J/95 THE GRIN and John Krediet’s J/97 PARTICIPANT II. While four J/29s will be doing battle in PHRF 3, two J/29s will be dueling in Performance Cruising 3 Class (Peter Hilgendorff’s MEDDLER and William Maher’s RIFT. Finally, in the PHRF Plus 1 Class, Eric Bicknese’s J/105 BIG E.Z. will be taking on a host of other short-handed teams.  For more STC Block Island Race Week sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Saturday, June 22, 2019

J/70 Youth SAILING Champions League Preview

Youth J/70 Sailing Champions League
(Kiel, Germany)- The Youth SAILING Champions League (YSCL) is set to take place over three days of intense competition from 22 to 24 June. Twenty-one clubs from nine nations, including Australia celebrating its first SAILING Champions League appearance, will be coming to the event that takes place during Kiel Week, the world’s largest sailing event that attracts every kind of sailor, from weekend warriors to Olympic Champions. The clubs taking part in the under-22 regatta are from Australia, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Italy, Norway, Portugal, Sweden, and Switzerland.

This is Australia’s first participation in the SAILING Champions League, and Jack Littlechild, the helmsman from the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron, said, “as the first Australian team to compete in a SAILING Champions League event, we are extremely excited for the racing in Kiel and thankful for this amazing opportunity. We are also very proud to be representing our country and the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron. We hope that through this event we can help build the National Sailing League at home as it is a great opportunity for all the sailing clubs in Australia and New Zealand to compete against each other in a really fun format of racing.”

Last year’s winner, Bodensee Yacht Club Überlingen (Germany), are back to defend their title. The 2018 YSCL event was also the first time for the four-boat final format to determine the winner. Konstantin Steidle, helmsman from Überlingen, was keen to repeat the club’s winning ways, “since March we have been training several weekends and we have also sailed the German Youth League in Starnberg with almost the same team composition. Of course, we hope to win the Youth SAILING Champions League again, although we know that our national and international competitors will send strong and well trained teams.”

Live Broadcasting & Results by SAP
The regatta will have two slots in the live broadcast of Kiel Week on Saturday, 22 June, from 13:00hrs to 15:00hrs (CEST) and on Monday, 24 June, from 12:00hrs (CEST). The live broadcast is available on sailing-championsleague.com.

The SAP Sailing Analytics provide 24/7 additional statistics and data for sailors, fans, spectators and media like GPS tracking, real-time analysis, live leaderboard combined with 2D visualization. You find all results on sapsailing.com!  Sailing photo credits- Lars Wehrmann   Youth J/70 2018 SAILING Championship highlights   For more Youth J/70 SAILING Champions League information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Ullman Sails Long Beach Race Week Preview

J/70 sailing Long Beach (Long Beach, CA)- The Alamitos Bay YC and Long Beach YC are hosting the 2019 Ullman Sails Long Beach Race Week from June 21st to 23rd for a fleet of 108 boats in what many consider to be one of the best sailing areas on the California coastline. Even though southern California is famous for its “June Gloom” (where mornings start with thick sea fog along the coast, 100 ft visibility no less), the powerful sun burns it all off by noontime and generates a fairly strong seabreeze from the WNW that can kick-in up to 20 kts by late afternoon!

Thirty-six J/Teams (about 33.0% of the fleet) are participating in the popular event. By far the biggest one-design class is the eighteen J/70s; many of those teams have an eye towards the J/70 World Championship that will be sailed in the same waters in 2020. Some of the top teams include Bruce Golison’s MIDLIFE CRISIS, Chris Kostanecki’s JENNIFER, Peter Cameron’s KANGAROO JOCKEY, Curt Johnson’s AVET 2.01, Jeff Janov’s MINOR THREAT, Jim Murrell’s HUCKLEBERRY, Tom Garret’s SLOOP JOHN B, and Patrick Danly’s BOONDOGGLE.

The eighteen-boat PHRF Division includes three J/105s (William Quealy’s J-RABBIT SLIM, Scott McDaniel’s OFF THE PORCH, & George Scheel’s SUN PUFFIN), two J/109s (Jeff Shew’s FUZZY LOGIC & Heinz Butner’s RAPTOR), Ken Kieding’s J/111 ARGO 3, and David Boatner’s J/35 RIVAL.

Finally, in the PHRF Random Leg Division includes Timothy Harmon’s J/124 CIRRUS.  For more Ullman Sails Long Beach Race Week sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Friday, June 21, 2019

RORC Morgan Cup Preview

J/133 Pintia sailing RORC race
(Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- The Royal Ocean Racing Club's Season's Points Championship continues this weekend with the Morgan Cup. The seventh offshore race of the series will start on Friday 21 June at 7pm from the Royal Yacht Squadron Line. Bound for Dieppe across the English Channel, ninety-five teams have entered the race to the fishing port on the Normandy Coast.

Sailing in the IRC 1 Class of fifteen boats are two J/121s- Samuel Hall’s JACKHAMMER and Nick Angel’s ROCK LOBSTER.

In the huge twenty-seven boat IRC 2 Class are Simon Grier-Jones J/111 SNOW LEOPARD, the famous duo of Gilles Fournier/ Corinne Migraine’s J/133 PINTIA, Chris Daniel’s J/122E JUNO, and Clive Miles’ J/122 JANGLE.

The large twenty-one boat IRC 3 Class features five J/109s (the Royal Air Force’s RED ARROW, Greg Nasmyth’s JARHEAD, the Royal Navy’s JOLLY JACK TAR, Rob Cotterill’s MOJO RISIN, and William Stock/ Andy Oliver’s JENGU) and the doublehanded duo of Tom Hayhoe and Natalie Jobling’s J/105 MOSTLY HARMLESS.

In the twenty-three boat IRC 4 Class is David McGough’s J/109 JUST SO and Paul Lewis’ J/105 RUM N CORK II.  For more RORC Morgan Cup sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

J/22 North Americans Preview

J/22s sailing offshore
(Wayzata, MN)- The 2019 edition of the J/22 North American Championship will be taking place on Lake Minnetonka and hosted by the Wayzata Yacht Club.  J/22s have enjoyed tremendous popularity in Minnesota, especially since its sloped keel generally does a pretty good job of shedding what seem to be endless weed patches on the lake. The event is enjoying a huge turnout due to the support from the local fleet as well as those boats traveling in from the east coast that are looking to enjoy fabulous Midwestern hospitality.

The sailors will have to contend with the notoriously shifty winds on the lake, as the funnel out of the many bays or roll over the hills surround the lake like mini-tornados.  The fleet of thirty-five boats includes many of the top teams, such as J/22 N.A. Champion Mike Marshall from Newport, RI sailing aboard BAD NEWS; Matt Zupon’s THE DUDE from Larchmont YC in New York; Chris Doyle’s THE JUG 4 1 from Youngstown YC in New York; Chris Princing’s AWARD & SPORTS/ EVIL DR. PORK CHOP from Tawas Bay YC in Michigan;

Some “sleeper” teams that could enjoy success are COLLEGE FUND sailed by three young sailors (Tim Siemers, Will Holz, and Aidan Kennedy) and Todd McBee’s TWO DOLLAR PISTOL from Paducah, KY. For more J/22 North American Championship sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.