Wednesday, April 1, 2015

J/125 Flies In Cabo Race- 9.1 Kts Average!

J/125 sailing Cabo Race (Cabo San Lucas, Mexico)- Cabo Race veterans dream of the idyllic offshore sailing conditions made famous in record-setting years.  Imagine taking off in sunshine, mid-70s temperature, just t-shirts and shorts and a light to moderate seabreeze building as the afternoon goes on.  Switch from Code Zero’s over to A3s overnight, then take off in trade-wind type conditions launched to Cabo San Lucas just 800nm away.  Much to the delight of this year’s 37-odd boat fleet, that’s how Neptune answered their prayers.  The sailors relished the solid northerlies blowing down the coast in big oscillations, surfing down the enormous Pacific Ocean swells, enjoying the moonlit nights filled with stars and watching long trails of phosphorescence in their stern wakes, watching in amazement as pods or schools of dolphins frolicked around their boats.

While the start was a bit of the usual light winds blowing onshore, it didn’t take long for the fleet to experience nice breeze offshore on the way down Mexico’s Baja Peninsula.  The ORR fleet saw the big boats whistling along at 17+ kt boatspeeds and the smaller boats simply peeling the miles away on their speedos in the 9 to 12+ kts range. There were several lead changes throughout the night in the class; it was amazing that boats can be this close after sailing so many miles.

By Sunday, the J/125 TIMESHAVER had taken the lead in ORR 3 Class. For them it was a drag race all day Sunday with few changes in position, and even into the night some of the boats were bundled together likely in sight of each other as they pass close by Isla Cedros. It was going to be a close race both across the line and corrected.

By the time they finished on Tuesday, the fleet continued to enjoy good winds and, generally, those who stood offshore of boats that kept gybing too far inshore kept making incremental gains.  In the end, it’s not too surprising that one of the top west coast offshore J/125 teams, Viggo Torbensen’s TIMESHAVER from Dana Point Yacht Club, pulled off a stellar performance to take second in ORR 3 Class and eighth overall!  It was an amazing ride for the TIMESHAVER gang; they averaged 9.1 kts boatspeed for the 810nm course, finished 3rd boat-for-boat against four SC 50s and beat their nemesis HORIZON by over 45 minutes corrected ORR time (they crossed the line only 26 minutes behind them, in sight after 810nm!!). Congratulations to Viggo and the crew!  For more Cabo Race sailing information.

Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga Training

J/70s training/ sailing on Hamburg Lake Alster (Hamburg, Germany)- Throughout the months of March and April, several of the clubs participating in the 2015 Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga are training together on their J/70s to get ready for the start of yet another fun and exciting sailing season where teams have the opportunity to sail in up to seven events from May to the Finals in October.  The primary training venue is the gorgeous Alster Lake in the middle of Hamburg with Norddeutscher Regatta Verein sailing club hosting the teams and running the regatta simulations.

J/70s sailing on Lake Alster, Hamburg, GermanySome of the teams participating in these “warm-ups” were Norddeutscher Regatta Verein (with Peter Kaehl, Sven Jurgensen and Marc-Daniel Mahlman) and Blankeneser Segel-Club (Hamburg), Duisburger Segel-Club (Nordrhein-Westfalen), Flensburger Segel-Club (Schleswig-Holstein), Seglervereinigung Itzehoe (Schleswig-Holstein), Verein Seglerhaus am Wannsee (Berlin), Segel-und Motorboot Club Überlingen (Baden-Württemberg) and Berliner Yacht-Club (Berlin).

Sven Jurgensen reported that, “The first day was rather gray and it was raining heavily. However, it was just great to see other DSB League teams coming together for common training programs.  In fact, for many clubs, it has been quite intensive training as they are also going through a process of team and crew selections.”

J/70 sailing in Munich, GermanyMore and more DSB League clubs have been training their teams in other parts of Germany, too. Last weekend several teams from the Munich were trained on their club J/70s.  Munich Yacht Club (MYC) in collaboration with teams from the Bavarian Yacht Club (BYC) had a great practice on their lake. "This is excellent that we have entered a training partnership with the BYC, because the races with five boats are very exciting and close to DSBL-mode," said team manager Michael Liebl from Munich YC. This coming weekend you will be certain to find them back out there working on speed, boat-handling and tactics!

This year’s DSBL schedule has been published and for those who wish to see what the excitement is all about in Germany, be sure to head over to one of these venues over the course of their season.  Most of the events will be sailed in J/70s, including all Champions League Level 1 and the Finale in Hamburg.
  • May 1-3-   Tutzing/ Starnberger See
  • Jun 5-7-   Kiel / Innenförde
  • Jul 4-6-   Warnemünde / Ostsee
  • Jul 18-20- Travemünde / Ostsee
  • Aug 21-23- Berlin / Wannsee
  • Sep 25-27- Überlingen / Bodensee
  • Oct 29-31- Hamburg / Außenalster- the Grand Finale
Sailing photo credits- Sven Jurgensen and C. Herrbold   For more J/70 Deutsche Segel Bundesliga sailing information

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

J/24 LA SUPERBA Crowned Trofeo Nettuno Champion

J/24 Trofeo Nettuno winners- La Superba- Ignacio Bonnano (Nettuno, Italy)- With a stunning performance, the Naples Navy crew on LA SUPERBA, skippered by Ignazio Bonnano and crew of Simone Recivo, Alfredo Branciforte, Picaro Francesco and Luigi Ravioli, won all six races to win the first of seven stages of the Italian J/24 Championship.

The event was perfectly organized by Neptune Yacht Club, in collaboration with the Italian Navy League section of Anzio, the Sailing Club of Rome, the Royal Rowing Club Tevere Remo, the Marina di Nettuno and the support of the Italian J/24 Class.

J/24 sailor- Litkey Farkas from Hungary and Lake BalatonThe presence of the best sailors in the twenty-four boat fleet made the event exciting and for close competition, at least for the balance of the top ten!  Amongst those competitors were Ignazio Bonnano (European Champion in 2012 in Cannigione), Luigi Ravioli (Italian champion in 2013), Massimo Mariotti (Italian champion in 2009 in Cagliari), Litkey Farkas (Hungarian champion in 2014 and current Soling World Champion- photo here), the James Black (current Italian J/24 National champion); and Italian Massimo Peter Noons (former champion of the Italian Laser class).

With six wins on the six races, LA SUPERBA was firmly in command of the regatta beginning on the first of racing.  They finished the regatta 10 points ahead of JAMAICA, sailed by the President of Italian J/24 Class, Pietro Diamanti, who sailed to a 6-2-2-2-10-4 record for 16 pts.  Taking third on the podium was JUMPIN JACK FLASH helmed this year the Hungarian Farkas Litkey (including crew Erica Manauzzi, Federico Miccio, Alessio Carvellin, Giorgio Caprini); their record was a reasonably consistent 8-6-4-3-2-7 for 22 pts.

Fourth place, just one point from the podium, was LILY PAD skippered by the young Giacomo Del Nero (owner/crew was Massimiliano Biagini), with a record of OCS-7-5-4-5-2 for 23 pts.  Fifth was JULIUS CEASAR skippered by Peter Max Noons with 25 pts.

"For the three days of racing, the PRO chose the bay to the north, an area not often sailed by the local fleet so as to make the competition fairer for crews from the other fleets,” said Federico Miccio. "Adding to the complexity of the sailing area was also the weather conditions: light wind from the south for the two races on Friday, a little more intense, but from the same direction, on Saturday (three races) and a light north-east wind Sunday for the only race completed before the wind fell below two knots."

"As President and as a sailor, I am extremely satisfied with this first leg of our circuit, thanks to great racing and a fun fleet to sail against; this confirms the strength of our class in Italy and the excellent camaraderie of our crews,” commented Pietro Diamanti. “On behalf of the entire class and especially the sailors and boat owners present these days in Nettuno, would like to thank and congratulate all the staff of the Nettuno Yacht Club and Marina di Nettuno, for their great hospitality and professionalism. Also, thanks to the jury, the measurer Cesare Cislaghi and all those who have worked on the water and on land for the great success of the event."

The National J/24 Circuit will continue with the Pasquavela- now in its twenty-eighth edition.  The event is organized by the Yacht Club Santo Stefano and will begin April 3, with sailing from April 4 to 6 inclusive. For more information, please visit YCSS link: http://www.ycss.it/pasquavela.htm   Thanks for the contribution from Paola Zanoni- Italian J/24 Class Press Officer- paolazanoni@icloud.com.  For more Trofeo Nettuno sailing information

Italian J/70- Campeonato Nazionale 2015

J/70 Calvi Network (Monte Carlo, Monaco)- The J/70 Italian Class is getting ready to run the largest J/70 regatta series in southern Europe. This was possible with the joint venture of the J/70 fleets from YC Monaco and YC Sanremo, managed with the cooperation of both the J/70 NCA Chairman Vittorio di Mauro from Italy and Jacopo Carrain from the J/70 NCA Monaco.

The main sponsor of the series will be ALCATEL OneTouch and the Federation Italiano de Vela (FIV) have assigned the winner of the series as the J/70 Italian National Champion; this goes to the best finishing Team at the end of a series of five regattas and up to thirty-five races!

The first two events will constitute, as well, the Spring Cup with active participation from both YC Monaco and YC San Remo fleets.  The third event will again be held in San Remo in May before the J/70 class heads across Italy to race for the first time on the Adriatic Sea; the sailors will enjoy the nice, friendly and well-organized location of the Riviera Romagnola and the wonderful host club- Circolo Nautico Cervia.  The final event will take on Lago di Garda in September, already a “classic” event for passionate J/70 enthusiasts in Europe.

J/70s sailing off Monte Carlo, MonacoThe twenty boats of the Italian Fleet are getting ready to move this week to Monaco to meet the local YC Monaco J/70's. Some Teams from North Europe are attending as well. Therefore, expect a crowded starting line in the range of forty-plus J/70’s!  All the best Italian Teams will be there, including Carlo Alberini’s CALVI NETWORK.  There is no question, CALVI NETWORK will be the “standard bearer” for all top European teams to be measured against; especially after winning the USA J/70 Midwinters in Key West, Florida, placing 2nd in the recent Bacardi Miami Sailing Week and was also the 2014 European Champion and Italian Champion!

The Italian JCA is looking forward to welcoming teams from all countries across Europe.  The ALCATEL OneTouch Italian Trophy is an “open” event and all Teams are welcome.  There is the opportunity to store your boat in Sanremo and J/Boats Italy is proud to offer their best assistance. The schedule for the events is as follows:
  • Mar 28-29- Spring Cup (YCM & YCS)- Monte Carlo, Monaco- YC Monaco
  • Apr 25-26- Spring Cup (YCM & YCS)- San Remo, Italy- YC San Remo
  • May 16-17- Campeonato Nazionale- San Remo, Italy- YC San Remo
  • Jun 12-14- Campeonato Nazionale- Cervia, Italy- Circolo Nautico Cervia
  • Sep 10-12- EuroCup- Riva del Garda, Italy- Fraglia Vela Riva
For more Alcatel OneTouch Italian J/70 Series sailing information, please contact:  Veronica Tondelli (vtondelli@gmail.com) Press agent for the J/70 Italian Class (http://www.j70.it)

Monday, March 30, 2015

Spanish J/80s Prepare for Worlds

J/80s sailing off Spain (Santander, Spain)- As they have in the past few years, the Spanish J/80 class meet during the winter time to discuss the regattas, sponsors and events they will participate in for the following year.  Recognizing the J/80 Worlds are being held in Germany in early July, the fleet adjusted their regatta schedules in order for their fleets to get in enough training and racing to feel competitive by early summer.

J/80 sailing off SpainCantabrian Championship
Recently, the Cantabrian Championships were sailed off Santander and the event could not have been harder fought by the teams in attendance. The 22 boat fleet sailed in gorgeous Santander Bay and seeing how close the fleet was sailing over the two days of sailing, it could easily have been mistaken for a world championship event taking place.

Javier Aguado’s MAQUECHE managed to hold off famous J/80 skippers like Pichu Torcida’s OXITAL and David Madrazo’s GO-FIT to take win the regatta.  Since he’s not a Cantabrian registered fleet sailor, the actual title of Cantabrian Champion went to Torcida’s OXITAL.

The difficult sailing conditions that included very light winds for the weekend meant that little errors could become very expensive quickly!  With such a tightly knit and talented fleet, it was hard to crawl back into contention in any given race.  In fact, every team in the top five had at least one race that was in double-digits!

After the conclusion of Sunday’s racing, Aguado’s MAQUECHE won with a 6-1-17-2-2 for 11 pts net.  A last race 14th shot any chances for Pichu’s OXITAL to win the regatta, instead having to settle for a scoreline of 1-5-4-3-14 for 13 pts net and second overall.  Third was Madrazo’s GO-FIT, posting a 4-15-8-5-3 for 20 pts net.

J/80 sailing-- GreatSailing SpainTrofeo GREATSAILING
Elsewhere in Spain, another strong fleet of fourteen boats was sailing to win the Nautica Watches Trophy of Spain— the Trofeo GREATSAILING.  This fleet was nearly as deep and talented as the Santander regatta.  Included in this event were Jose Maria van der Ploeg, a multiple World Champion; Massimo Rama, the Italian J/80 champion; and Marc Antonio, the 2014 Spanish champion.

Unlike their friends in Santander, the fleet never got a race off on Saturday due to such light winds.  However, the regatta PRO and the RC committee more than redeemed themselves by running four excellent races on Sunday.  It was abundantly clear after the first two races that BRIBON MOVISTAR was going to be the “star” of the show, with Marc de Antonio and Sofía Bertrand ultimately claiming victory and taking the Nautica Watches Trophy - Trofeo GreatSailing.  After posting an opening duo of bullets, the MOVISTAR Team took a 3-1-4 to close the series with 6 pts net and win the tiebreaker.  The NAUTICA WATCHES team skippered by van der Ploeg took second with a 5-2-1-2-1 series for 6 pts net to lose the tiebreaker!  Third was Rosa Artigas skippering MIKAKU, fourth was Javier Scherk’s GUNTER and fifth was the Italian team on JENIALE! which was skippered by Massimo Rama.

J/80 sailing with friends off SpainMI MONEDA Leads Trofeo Vitaldent
There was spectacular sailing over the past weekend of the Bay of Baiona, with weather conditions that led to the quick races and lots of tight maneuvering for the teams. The crew of MI MONEDA, skippered by Jacobo Vecino, took advantage of the 20 knots of wind and successfully completed the races crossing the finish line first in all three races!

Behind the dominant MI MONEDA, the FERRALEMES team with skipper Roberto Fontan and the NEW MOON crew with Juan Luis Tuero at the helm, managed to place second and third place, respectively, for the weekend’s sailing.

After this event, the MI MONEDA team strengthens its leadership in the overall Trofeo Monte Real, with three wins in five days of competition. VIRAZON and NEW MOON could end up with the silver and bronze trophies if they can keep their good performances going next weekend.   Rounding out the top five in the standings are NAMASTE, NORTADA and FERRALEMES.

The Trofeo Vitaldent continues on March 28-29 with the last two days of the competition and the awards to the overall winners.   For more Spanish J/80 sailing information

Big Tide, Shiftiness @ Warsash Spring #2

J/111 sailing on Solent- Warsash Spring Series (Warsash, England)- Sunday 22 March was a day that had the race team on their toes and competitors sailing backwards for the second weekend of the Brooks MacDonald Warsash Spring Series. The wind shifted from the forecast ENE, died and came back, and the big spring tides raced through the Solent - all making for some frustrating racing!

White Group’s first and only race started with competitors being pushed across the line by 2 knots of tide and ended with them being pushed away from the line as they tried to finish the race!

An attempt to get the J/70’s second race started ended with competitors not even being able to reach the start line – at which point the White Group race team declared the bar was open and racing was unfortunately finished!

J70 sailors in EnglandJUST4PLAY (Simon Cavey) narrowly won in the J/70 fleet, beating Boats.com (Ian Atkins) to second place with COSMIC (Patrick Liardet) in third. As a result, the series continues to see Cavey’s crew atop the leaderboard sitting on 3 pts net from a 1-1-4-1 record.  Racing up the ladder after a toss-race, but tied on points for second, was Nigel Evans’ LITTLE LOUISE with a 4-2-1-7 for 7 pts.  Likewise, classmate David Mitchell’s JUMANJI has a 2-3-2-5 for 7 pts.

In the J/80’s the first three boats were a good minute ahead of the rest of the fleet with BOYSTEROUS (Ali Hall) taking first place, BETTY (Jon Powell) in second and SWALLOW (Romain Patemot) in third.  For the series, that means Powell’s unbroken string of firsts now includes a dastardly 2nd place!  Nevertheless, with a toss race and a record of 1-1-1-2 that’s a class-leading 3 pts.  Sitting on second and showing improvement every race is Ali’s BOYSTEROUS crew with a 3-3-2-1 tally for 6 pts.  Third is Mike Lewis’ JESTER with a 2-2-3-DNS for 7 pts net.

J70s sailing on the SolentFor the Black Group tidal tactics were definitely the name of the game. Racing a series of windward-leeward legs between Wight Vodka and the Hill Head/Lee-on-Solent shore helped keep the boats mainly on the Hill Head plateau and East Knoll bank areas and so out of the strongest current of the big spring tides. However, by the second half of the race the breeze had died away to little or nothing for a very frustrating 1.5 hours or more. By the time it did fill in again it had shifted to the SE making the remaining legs of the race rather processional.

Spring Series Chairman Peter Bateson said, “It was great that nearly three-quarters of the boats kept going and persevered to the finish, which we had been shortened 2.5 miles early at Hill Head buoy”.

Leading the IRC 1 Class home was the J/111 ICARUS (Chris Body & Andrew Christie), now holding the series lead with a 4-1 for 5 pts over fellow J/111 JITTERBUG skippered by Cornell Riklin with a 2-4 for 6 pts.

J/88 sailing Solent- Warsash Spring SeriesIn IRC2 it was clear the J/88 JI FI sailed by Stew Hawthorn and Paul Heys enjoyed the challenging light air going, taking a second in this hotly contested class to move into fourth overall for the series.

The top J/Crew in IRC 3 class continues to be the J/97 BLACKJACK II sailed by Andy Howe, currently lying in 5th for the series with 11 pts.  Sitting in seventh place is David Greenhalgh’s J/92s J’RONIMO with 12 pts.  Remarkably, only five points differentiates 2nd to 8th overall!  Needless to say, there will be some tight racing in the weekends ahead for this class.

Finally, in the J/109 class on the Black Group circle, Paul Griffiths’ JAGERBOMB won another race to lead their class for the day and the series.  Taking second on the day was David McGough’s JUST SO followed by Frank Gmitrowicz’s RED ARROW.   For the time being, Owain Franks & Jean Lockett’s JYNNAN TONNYX is tied for series second overall with Joe Henry’s JACK TAR with 7 pts each.

After a frustrating day on the water competitors headed back to the Warsash Sailing Club where Tiffany Beard from Brooks Macdonald presented the champagne prizes of the day for each of the class winners.  For more Brooks MacDonald Warsash Spring Series sailing information

Sunday, March 29, 2015

US Coast Guard College J/70 Regatta

J/70 at US Coast Guard Academy, New London, CT (New London, CT)- This coming weekend, the U.S. Coast Guard Academy will be hosting their first intercollegiate keelboat regatta with their J/70 fleet.  Teams will be sailing equalized one-design J/70s with four person crews on the Thames River.  The format is short course, college-style sailing with double windward-leewards and rotations likely after every two races.  Sound familiar for those who’ve been following the “sailing US Coast Guard Academy- Jacobs Rock Sailing Centerleague” formats? College-style sailing is fun, exciting, high-energy and incredibly social as teams hang out on the docks and watch the racing together.

The USCGA’s facility at Jacob’s Rock is one of the nicest sailing facilities anywhere in college sailing.  Built over Jacob’s Rock and accessed by a 300 yard long pier, it offers the sailors, coaches and spectators an extraordinary venue to watch and enjoy the sport of sailing.

If you have any questions about USCGA Sailing or their J/70 cadet offshore sailing program, please contact Jack Neades at email- jack.l.neades@uscga.edu.   For more USCGA Sailing team information