Sunday, August 14, 2011

Texans Win J/80s Buzzards Bay!

J/24s racing at Buzzards Bay Regatta (New Bedford, MA)- It all started at lunch in New Bedford at Ray and Joe’s Restaurant in 1972. Bill Saltonstall of the Beverly Yacht Club and Bob Saltmarsh of the New Bedford Yacht Club commiserated that the numbers of boats entering their clubs’ regattas were dwindling each year. They decided that it would be a good idea if all of the yacht clubs around Buzzards Bay would get together each year to sponsor one large regatta. That way, they could attract the best boats in each class to race against each other. That first regatta in 1972 was a huge success, attracting a fleet of 199 competitors. Thus began a great tradition that has gained momentum and developed a well-earned reputation among sailors across the country. The intersection of great sailing conditions and highly-competent race management is the promise offered by the BBR.  Today the BBR is the largest multi-class regatta in the United States with over 450 boats and 1,200 sailors across fifteen different classes.

There were solid turnouts for the J one-design classes, the J/24s and the J/80s.  In addition, there were some good showings from J's in the PHRF handicap classes.

For the J/24s, it was anything but a "sketchy" outcome to the regatta for the thirteen J/24s participating.  Basically, it was a blowout by the SKETCHY AT BEST team led by the ringmaster himself, Ryan Walsh.  Seven 1sts and three 2nds, tossing a 2nd?? Hmmm.  Talk about a "schooling" of the local BBR J/24 fleet, they only won by seven points.  Second overall, and putting up a good fight for the most part, was Harlem YC's (yes, from New York City!), Phil Swanton sailing TRINITY to 19 points.  Third was Craig Correia's QUEEQUUEG from Angelica YC with 40 pts.

J/111 one-design offshore racing sailboat- Wicked 2.0The very competitive fourteen boat J/80 fleet was won by a Texan! Holy smokes. Even more improbably, from a yacht club that has a "longhorn cow" in its burgee?? Oh dear, can't blame them for moving north, wouldn't you?  Dallas, TX only had it's 46th 100+ degree Fahrenheit day in a row!!  Blistering hot, too hot, too hot.  Nevertheless, Bruno Pasquinelli and crew on TIAMO finally got the job done and won perhaps one of the more coveted J/80 trophies on the Eastern seaboard- J/80 Buzzards Bay Campeonato!  Bruno's team hung on to their lead by the slimmest of margins, snagging a rip-snorting 4-4 in the last two races to secure their win by one point over Chris Chadwick from Eastport YC in Annapolis, MD.  Third was local hero Chip Johns on CAVITICA from Bedford YC with 31 potions, fourth was J/105 Champion Brian Keane sailing his J/80 SAVASANA to 33 points and fifth was Gary Kamins and his friend Jay Lutz handing tough to secure a first in the last race for a total of 37 points.

In PHRF 1, Doug Curtiss' J/111 WICKED 2.0 from the host New Bedford YC managed to sail a solid and consistent series to finish second overall.  In PHRF 2, Ted Herlihy's J/109 GUT FEELING (a former J/109 Northamerican Champion) from the host New Bedford YC sailed a very strong series to finish just 0.5 points from first.  Third was Steve Thurston's J/29 MIGHTY PUFFIN from Barrington YC.  For more Buzzards Bay Regatta Sailing results