Sunday, September 29, 2013

J/Fest San Diego Preview

J/70 sailing San Diego (San Diego, CA)- The San Diego J/Fest boasts a long history of being one of the most fun and well attended regattas in Southern California.  And, it's exclusively for J/Boat owners! The regatta is open to one-design classes as well as a J/PHRF fleet!

Hosted by San Diego YC the J/Teams will enjoy three day of competitive, fun buoy racing from September 27th to 29th.  Friday is the fun, casual race around set marks and government marks, followed by two days of course racing on Saturday and Sunday.  Inside the bay will be the smaller boats (like J/22, J/70 and J/80) and offshore will be the larger boats (the J/105s, J/109s and J/120s).

While the sailing is always nice in sunny San Diego, J/Fest is perhaps most renown for its onshore festivities.  Saturday evening is the traditional J/Fest Party, basically a giant cook-out on the lawn with live music and lots of awesome swag and giveaways from the sponsors.  The fun factor is a key element of the event, a reason why over fifty boats have attended every year.

The J/105s have yet another great turnout with most of the top local teams sailing, including Chuck Driscoll's BLOW BOAT, Steve & Lucy Howell's BLINK!, Rick Goebel's SANITY, Dennis & Sharon Case's WINGS, Rich Bergmann's ZUNI BEAR, Jon Dekker's AIR BOSS and Gary Mozer's CURRENT OBSESSION 2 fro Los Angeles.

The J/120s have traditionally offered very tight competition with a modest-sized fleet.  Again, a number of local favorites are sailing and should be factors at the front of the fleet.  Familiar faces like John Laun's CAPER, John Snook's JIM, Chuck Nichols' CC RIDER, Gary Winton's SHENANIGANS and Mike Hatch's J/ALMIGHTY have all had their fair share of great performances in J/Fest.

The J/109 class will see past local and regional champions sailing again, including Gene Pitkin's GERONIMO, Rex Butler's JD, John Shulze's LINSTAR and Daylen Tercen's GREAT BALLS OF FIRE!

The J/70s will debut as a class and their six boat fleet should present a lot of fun racing on San Diego Bay.  Having been traveling to the last three major J/70 events on the West Coast, Dan Gribble's GO-RILLA, Eric Kownacki/ Tom Jenkins' DFZ, Karl Pomeroy's ZERO TO 60 and Craig Tallman's JAYA may have a leg-up on the fleet. Nevertheless, 70 sailors have proven they're climbing the learning curve fast in this simple boat, so expect to see good competition from Hugh Bennet on CHEETAH CUB and Sean O'Keefe on DECOLORES 3.  For more J/Fest sailing information, please be sure to contact Joanne O'Dea at  Or, go to the San Diego YC website.