Saturday, September 5, 2015

NAUTICAL SYMPHONY Encores @ J/80 Hans Fogh Memorial Regatta

J/80s at Hans Fogh Memorial Regatta Canada (Sodus Bay, NY)- “Oh what a feeling!  Its been a few weeks since LYRA and the after-glow continues. We had our largest Fleet 20 turn out yet with nine boats competing at Sodus Bay YC. For those that didn’t make it, you were missed!

The J/80 fleet started showing up first by water after racing from Rochester YC to Sodus Bay YC in true championship fashion. We clearly were making a statement by posting a 1st, 2nd and 3rd place win in the Centennial Race Division 2, PHRF 1 Spinnaker start and PHRF 1st Overall Corrected. I had friends in other fleets that were blown away watching the J/80 fleet storm by them on the course. Everyone wants a J/80!

Congratulations to Gene and the ESCAPE crew along with the rest of the competitors. This has inspired a coastal race to be incorporated into next year’s race week.

Wednesday was the day the road warriors arrived, one by one pulling in and taking over the SBYC launch area. Owners and crew across the fleet swarmed in to assist in what was a mostly uneventful process of stepping the masts and launching the boats. By mid afternoon many of the competitors were tuned and rafted off the prime location designated J/80 docks and enjoying the camaraderie.

J/80 sailing team in CanadaThe Smith’s invited us all to an Irish Pub in Webster where we were toasted by the locals in true tradition, Sláinte J/80’s!  At this point I want to thank our Chef de Mission Lisa Smith and her crew David and Ben. You guys truly made the entire regatta for us, from the moment we arrived until we pulled out on Sunday. Having the SBYC committee know what to expect before we arrived, assigning a sweet location for us and setting the extra buoys to support our raft was awesome. Dave, your assistance and cool head mast stepping kept us all calm and got the job done. Ben, I’m sure you had something to do with the ever flowing beer (and water) in Lisa and Dave’s cooler, thanks for all your help!

I can’t forget to mention our mariners on BREAKAWAY-J that sailed in from Kingston YC, on short fuel rations and the circumnavigators on FEISTY, sailing all the way from National YC in Toronto, wow- that is impressive!

The LYRA course racing was awesome, with three great races Friday, three more on Saturday and two on Sunday. We had every condition from no wind, good wind to OMG STAY ON THE BOAT!! Saturday being the highlight for me, with 6' waves and 20+knots of breeze! Those downwind sleigh rides were incredible! A true reminder of how fun this little yacht is.

Not only was this a great LYRA regatta but an awesome opportunity to demonstrate what a great fleet we've created. I was taken aside by SBYC’s Commodore, Bob Carey, and given an incredible compliment directed at the entire fleet. He shared that it didn’t get overlooked by the club and the other regatta participants just how great you all are, coming together to help each other out, to party and to compete.

J/80 "feeder race" on Canada's Lake OntarioThe LYRA Championship Award that NAUTICAL SYMPHONY was presented goes to you all. Congratulations. Speaking about NAUTICAL SYMPHONY, WOW… a two peat!!  Seriously??  A second year in a row winning the Hans Fogh Memorial Open. A fantastic accomplishment amongst a fleet of nine very competitive sailors, with seven races and only 6 points spread between 2nd and 6th. Congratulations to owners Bart Smit & Pascal Desrosiers, crew Gitte Frederiksen and driver/tactician David Holmes for showing us how it’s done. Also, congrats to second place finisher JIGGERS and to third place EAGLES WINGS.

The Hans Fogh Memorial Lake Ontario J/80 Open is being held again next year in conjunction with LYRA on July 29-31, 2016 at Whitby Yacht Club- PUT IT ON YOUR J/80 CALNEDARS!  I look forward to seeing everyone there in the lead up to the J/80 North Americans. I'm sure we'll be taking the LYRA One-Design Fleet flag home again with more than nine boats attending next year for sure!  Sail Fast!”  Thanks for the report from Lawrence Alexander- owner of JIGGERS.  For more J/80 Hans Fogh Memorial Regatta sailing information