Thursday, October 11, 2012

Challenging Sailing- AYC Fall Series

J/105 Eclipse- sailing AYC Fall Series (Rye, NY)- At some point, the streak of three beautiful weekends of sailing on Long Island Sound was going to break.  However, no one expected it to be such a demanding two days of sailing for the final weekend of racing in this year's AYC Fall Series.  With a combination of variable light winds Saturday and Sunday it was anybody's guess as to what was going to be a successful strategy for the weekend.  Nevertheless, some boats faired much better than others.

J/80 one-design sailboat- sailing fast on Long Island SoundSome boats got HUSTLERED in PHRF 4, some were confounded by a CONUNDRUM in J/105s.  Yet others were a DRAGON working on a WING and a PATRIOTic prayer in IRC 3.  A GOLD DIGGER named MAXINE was up to the CHALLENGE, but a RESOLUTE VAMP named BEAGLE got all the GLORY in the J/44s.  ANDIAMO had to say "BRAVO" for an admirable, debut performance in PHRF 1.  In the J/109s, SKOOT was not so RELIANT on her STRATEGERY in every race; but NORDLY's BLUE SKY proposition to be the BIG BOAT was not received favorably by others. Then, in the J/105s it appears that CONUNDRUM was intent on confounding KINCSEM with an ECLIPSE.  But it was apparent the real REVELATION was that LOU LOU didn't have the GUMPTION during the MORNING GLORY of Sunday to SHAKEDOWN PLANET CLAIRE.  Perhaps the most JADED with their heads mostly in the STRATOSphere was GHOST DOG who was walking in CIRCLEs with BAD MEDICINE after having their eggs SUNNYSIDE UP!  All editorial lampooning and kidding aside, here's what did happen in these various fleets this past weekend. :)

The J Teams were well-represented across the spectrum of one-design sailing and IRC/ PHRF Handicap racing with a total of 102 boats sailing. In the one-design world were big fleets of nine J/44s, eight J/109s, twenty-one J/105s and six J/80s.  In the handicap arena, the J/122s, J/133 raced in IRC 3 while J/111s sailed PHRF A and the J/70, J/29s and J/92 sailed PHRF 4.  All in all, fifty-six J's were sailing or about 55% of the total fleet, the overwhelming brand leader in the regatta!

J/133 Antidote sailing AYC Fall on Long Island soundThe competition in IRC 40 was closely fought, but in the end it was Andrew Weiss' family team aboard the J/122 CHRISTOPHER DRAGON that started in first and never relinquished their lead, winning with six 1sts and one 2nd for a net 6 pts overall!  Giving them run for the money but seemingly just off the pace tactically was the beautiful J/122 WINGS sailed by Mike Bruno, managing 16 pts net, sufficient for second place in class.  Fourth was Steve Furnary's PATRIOT with 24 pts net.  Sixth was Ron Richman's J/133 offshore champion ANTIDOTE with 28 pts net.

In PHRF A, the J/111s led all teams home with Paul Strauch's ANDIAMO winning with five 1sts and two 2nd for 7 pts net.  They were followed home by the vastly improved BRAVO team led by Sedgwick Ward with two 1sts and five 2nds for 10 pts net!

In PHRF 4, the J/Teams dominated.  The infamous J/29 HUSTLER sailed by the Esposito family with John and Tony led the charge to the top of the fleet on the first day and never looked back, accumulating eight 1sts and one 2nd to crush their class with a perfect counting scoreline of simply 1sts.  Second was the J/92 HOUND DOG sailed by Christian Uecker with a total of 17 pts net.

J/109 Skoot sailing in AYC Fall SeriesIn the one-design world, the J/44's had great sailing amongst the eight boats participating.  Jim Bishop's GOLD DIGGER got their "mojo" together for the first regatta in quite some time and pulled off a well-deserved victory in a tough fight for the top three overall between the DIGGER, MAXINE and CHALLENGE.  Second was Bill Ketcham's MAXINE with 16 pts net, just one point back from DIGGER.  Third was Jeff Willis' CHALLENGE IV with 17 pts net, nearly pulling off an upset victory overall had they won the second to last race.  Len Sitar's and AJ Evans' VAMP finished fourth, beating Don & Dick Rave's RESOLUTE that finished fifth on a tie-breaker "count-back".

The J/109s had a "runaway" after the first weekend with Jim Vos' SKOOT team (pictured above) compiling an impressive record for the regatta to win with just 18 pts net.  Matt Baker's RELIANT hung on strongly to secure second place after the first weekend and won a tie-breaker over Jack Forehand's STRATEGERY with both teams scoring 23 pts each.  Fourth was Bob Schwartz's NORDLYS and fifth was John Pearson's BLUE SKY.

J/105 sailing off starting line on Long Island SoundJ/105s had a huge turn-out for the AYC Fall Series, one of their best in years with twenty-one boats participating!  It also marked a subtle "changing of the guard" as a new sheriff showed up in town and ultimately walked off with all the silverware.  Third after the first weekend, Harald Edegran's and Jeremy Henderson's CONUNDRUM sailed a fleet-leading 1-3 on the last weekend to sew up their first major regatta win on Long Island Sound in J/105s. Next on the scoreline were two long-time J/105 class veterans.  Second was Joerg Esdorn's and Duncan Hennes' KINCSEM with 30 pts, narrowly beating Damian Emery's ECLIPSE with 32 pts.  Fourth was George and Alex Wilbanks' REVELATION and fifth was Paul Beaudin's LOULOU.

Finally, the J/80s also had a runaway with Gary Panariello's team on COURAGEOUS finishing with 11 pts net as a result of five 1sts and four 2nds!  Second was Dan Goldberg's FRIVOLOUS with 19 pts net and third was Mike Zupon's JUGGERNAUT.   For more American YC Fall Series sailing information   For AYC Fall Series scores