Proud owner of J/160 hull #9, Doug McClaflin, recently sent us an update on the life in the middle of the Pacific. As he describes it, "We love our J/160! She rides majestically on her mooring in front of Waikiki Yacht Club in Honolulu. We're lucky enough to do a variety of races and cruises all year long!
I bought the boat in 2007 and had planned to race in the 2007 TransPac Race. The original owner was very good at stalling the close on the sale, most likely to maintain the higher price he wanted for the boat thinking I would agree in order to have the boat ready for the start line. As it turned out, I called his bluff and lowered the price, offering to give up the race since the boat was in San Diego. The owner agreed since he was about to lose the sale, so I ended up leaving from San Diego not officially in the race but did sail down with the fleet by being a non-official entry, safer that way to cross the pond and it was the second time I sailed to Hawaii on a J-Boat. The first time was on a J-46 as crew in the 2004 Pacific Cup. It was that first crossing that sold me on a J-Boat and took three years before I found "Hana Hou". "Hana Hou" in Hawaiian means "one more time", "do it again", "encore".
I race the boat in selected races, the first long distance race was 2008 from Oahu to Kauai getting first to finish and third overall missing first place by 9 minutes after nine hours of racing. My rating at the time was not favorable being my first Hawaiian entry, I believe it was -9 PHRF. I now have a 18 rating having convinced the rating committee that Hana Hou is a cruising boat......don't tell anybody. I do our beer can races on Friday nights, weekend warrior races and every year the 70nm Maui to Oahu Lahaina Return race on Labor Day. No around the buoys. We race for fun and a good time. Just won last month the "Best Dressed Boat" for opening day and the fun race after at Waikiki YC!
I'm on the Board at Waikiki Yacht Club and Vice Chair Admin of the Honolulu Host Committee for this year's 2013 TransPac Yacht Race. We look forward to coverage for this years race as I believe we have some J-Boats entered. Aloha, Doug
P.S.- I selected the J-160 after meeting Rodney at the Oakland Boat Show many many years ago. Having stepped up from a Catalina 42 that I raced single-handed in San Francisco I now take out my J-160 alone quite often. Even set the kite on those perfect days alone. A great boat."