Sunday, October 15, 2017

New York YC Wins J/80 Team Race in England

J/80s sailing Queen Mary Reservoir in Heathrow Airport, England (Queen Mary Reservoir,  Heathrow,  England)- Sailing J/80s on the Queen Mary Reservoir in London, England can be quite an exciting experience.  This large “lagoon” is located directly beneath the southerly approach to the famously busy Heathrow Airport.  Even on light air days, the tip vortices off the biggest jets like the Airbus A380 or Boeing 747 can be felt on the water!  Makes for some interesting shifts or wind shear sometimes!

J/80 New York YC team sailorsNevertheless, the fleet of J/80s supplied by Royal Thames YC and the Royal Yacht Squadron were team raced this past weekend by four teams for the bi-annual “Cornerstone Cup”- an event between the Royal Thames YC, Royal Yacht Squadron, New York YC and St Francis YC.  After 54 races, Team NYYC won not only the Cornerstone Cup, but also the Madcap Trophy, the Nichols Trophy and the Quissetta Trophy!  New York YC Commodore Phil Lotz was providing the on-water cheering section and coaching for the happy team that was sailing a 2 vs 2 format- where “last loses” the race. Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

YC Costa Smeralda & ONE OCEAN Announcement

YC Costa Smeralda ONE OCean(Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy)- The environmental sustainability initiative promoted by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda in its 50th anniversary year in the form of the One Ocean Forum and presentation of the Charta Smeralda in Milan on 3rd and 4th October, has garnered the support of the SAILING Champions League (SCL) and the International Sailing League Association (ISLA).

On 23rd September, during the Audi SAILING Champions League event in Porto Cervo, both associations signed an agreement undertaking to promote the principles of the “Charta Smeralda” to an audience of more than 150,000 members of international yacht clubs.

YC Costa Smeralda, SAILING Champions league partner for ONE OceanThe Sailing Champions League launched a new type of sail racing competition in 2013 utilizing the International J/70 one-design class that has revolutionized the sport of sailing. The League sees individual yacht clubs competing in national leagues within a dedicated circuit. The ISLA was created successively and encompasses each of the individual national leagues, most of which use the J/70 one-design class as their base sailboat for competition.

"I am pleased that two associations such as the SCL and ISLA, which oversee all of the national leagues and their respective members, have given their support to our environmental sustainability initiative, undertaking to promote the Charta Smeralda to a wide audience that is closely linked to the sea." commented Riccardo Bonadeo, YCCS Commodore and Vice President of the One Ocean Forum.

Oliver Schwall, Managing Director of the SCL declared: "Behind the SAILING Champions League and the International Sailing League Association (ISLA), are up to 300 sailing clubs from 15 countries involved with more than one hundred and fifty thousand members. This gives us a great opportunity to make the ideas of the Charta Smeralda known throughout Europe. We are thrilled to integrate the One Ocean Initiative into our communication activities and I am convinced that many of the clubs will follow the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda and will adopt the ideas of the Charta Smeralda to protect the sea."

The signing of this agreement underlines one of the primary objectives set by the One Ocean Forum: raising awareness of an environmentally sustainable culture. Awareness is being promoted principally towards realities close to YCCS, such as yacht clubs and associations like the SCL and ISLA which are intrinsically linked to the sea; the element that plays host to their activities.

The Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, promoter of the One Ocean Forum, will be the first organization to sign and adopt the principles of the “Charta Smeralda” which is to be presented on 4th October in Milan.  For further information please visit: http://www.yccs.com or http://www.oneoceanforum.org Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Close encounters of the J/70 kind!

J/70 Worlds planing video crash (Porto Cervo, Sardinia)- According to the skipper, “we were going around 14 knots downwind when another boat broached just ahead of us, we pulled up higher and higher until we were nearly broaching ourselves.

The gennaker trimmer had no idea anything had happened so he kept responding to the skipper’s commands to let the sheet out with: "why?? the kites flying awesome!"

We were able to narrowly avoid a collision, thanks to the great steering and cool head of our skipper! Top speed was 15.8 kts on that run.”   Watch YouTube J/70 sailing video here Add to Flipboard Magazine.

NOSTALGIA Crowned J/70 East Coast Champion!

J/70 sailing under spinnaker(Deltaville, VA)- The J/70 East Coast Championship was held by Fishing Bay Yacht Club (FBYC) in Deltaville, Virginia on September 30/October 1.

Sailors enjoyed gusty/shifty northwest to northeast winds on Saturday and Sunday ranging from 8 to 20 knots. Given the strong wind, current and steep chop, the race committee moved racing inside to Fishing Bay so that they could set their anchors properly.

Blake Kimbrough and his long-term NOSTALGIA crew of Julia and Lud Kimbrough and FBYC Vice Commodore, Rob Whittemore, was the top boat on Saturday with finishes of 1-5-2-3 and the top boat overall for the weekend.  Even though Blake did not race his J/70 in 2016, he clearly did not lose his touch as he won the J/70 Class at the Stingray regatta Labor Day weekend and followed up with his win at the East Coast Championship. The NOSTALGIA crew consistently started well, sailed fast (despite their aged sails) and got around the corners in good shape.

Henry Filter and his WILD CHILD crew sailed very well and were exceptional at close quarters maneuvering. The WILD CHILD team placed second in the regatta, with their performance ramping up from 3-7-1-6 on Saturday to 1-2-3 on Sunday.

Gannon Troutman sailed at Fishing Bay after a couple of years of racing top-flight regattas around the world. Gannon and his all junior crew on PIED PIPER (fellow classmates from Christ Church School near Deltaville, VA) sailed extremely well both days with finishes of 2-2-8-2 on Saturday (tied for second for the day) and finishes of 7-3-4 on Sunday to end up third for the regatta.  We hope to see Gannon and his crew at the J/70 Youth Champs next year at St. Petersburg Yacht Club!  For more J/70 East Coast Championship sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Drama-filled Conclusion @ AYC Fall Series

J/70 sailing AYC Fall series (Rye, NY)- The American YC’s annual Fall Series that takes place over two weekends at the end of September and start of October always seems to have a combination of benign sailing weather and dramatic storms to round out the experience.  The 2017 series was no exception.  The first weekend produced near pristine sailing conditions on Saturday and much lighter breezes on Sunday- all punctuated by clear skies and sunny days.  The second weekend was anything but that scenario- with Saturday’s weather influenced by the “tail feathers” of Hurricane Maria offshore, producing an enormous “water spout” (a water-borne tornado) just six miles southeast from where the fleet was sailing and stormy northerly winds all day. By contract, Sunday had virtually no winds and was a sunny warm "shorts & shades" day!

For the 120-odd boats that registered to sail over the two weekends, they sure got their money’s worth.  Great sailing on at least one day for both weekends, that’s a good thing in western Long Island Sound at this time of year!

J/70s finishing at AYC Fall seriesIn the J/70 class, Scott & Alex Furnary on ANY COLOUR easily won the class with five bullets in their scoreline to win with just 11 pts net in nine races sailed!  A forecast of things to come in the J/70 North Americans??  Time will tell if they can maintain that pace against J/70 class veterans.  Second was Trevor Roach’s SEMI-CHARMED with 29 pts net and third was Carrie & Ed Austin’s CHINOOK with 45 pts net.  The balance of the top five were Ernest Bourassa’s ALTHEA in 4th place and Dan Goldberg’s BAZINGA in 5th position.

J/105s sailing AYC Fall seriesThe J/105 class saw the St Francis YC duo of Bruce Stone and Nicole Breault on GOOD TRADE just eke out another win, just barely.  Tied on points at 18 pts net each with Damian Emery’s ECLIPSE, the GOOD TRADE duo just squeezed out another win against great competition.  Third was Paul Beaudin’s LOU LOU with 25 pts net.  Rounding out the top five were George & Alex Wilbanks REVELATION in 4th and Randy Bourne’s STRANGE BREW in 5th place.

The J/88 class had incredibly tight racing for the top three spots on the podium.  In the end, it was Newport’s Doug Newhouse’s crew on YONDER that took the class prize with just 19 pts net.  Two women skipper’s featured in the next two slots on the podium, a first for this highly-competitive class.  Elizabeth J/88 sailing on Long Island SoundBarry’s ESCAPE was second with 22 pts and Iris Vogel’s DEVIATION was third with 27 pts net.  Mike Bruno’s WINGS was 4th with 29 pts net and Ken & Drew Hall’s NEVERMORE ended up in 5th position with 40 pts.  Again, showing the depth of the fleet, all five boats in the top five won races!

It sure is hard to slow down a freight-train once it is moving fast!  That has seemed to be the case for David Rosow’s crew on the J/109 LOKI.  Continuing on their successes all season-long, they won five of ten races to easily be crowned kings of the J/109 class for the falls series.  Second was Jon Rechtshaffer’s EMOTICON with 22 pts, third was Bengt & Marie Johansson’s ZIG ZAG, fourth Bill Rogers’ BIG BOAT and fifth was Carl Olsson’s MORNING GLORY.

Upsetting the momentum of the “gold diggers” on the second weekend was Bill Ketcham’s MAXINE in the J/44 class, winning class by just one point.  Jim Bishop’s crew on GOLD DIGGER closed with a bullet in the last race, but it was not enough to overcome back-to-back 4-4’s on the beginning of the day to ultimately take second in class.  Third was Len Sitar’s VAMP, fourth Don & Dick Rave’s RESOLUTE and fifth the US Coast Guard Academy’s GLORY.

J/111 Andiamo sailing AYC Fall seriesIn the PHRF handicap-racing world, J/Teams just about cleaned house.  Winning PHRF 1 Class was Neil Hindle’s J/145C MUSKOKA, with Ron Richman’s J/133 ANTIDOTE taking 4th in class.

Crushing the PHRF 2 Class was David & Maryellen Tortorello’s PARTNERSHIP with just 9 pts net.  They were followed by Paul Strauch’s ANDIAMO with 13 pts, tied for 2nd place but losing the tie-break to take 3rd in class.

In PHRF 3 Class, Andy Oeftering’s J/92 SHOOTING STAR sailed a solid series against a variety of high-powered boats to take 2nd in class.  For more American YC Fall Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Cleveland 216 Regatta Report

J/70s sailing off Cleveland sunset (Cleveland, OH)- On Lake Erie, the season-ending finale has symbolically become the Cleveland 216 Regatta hosted by the Edgewater YC for one-design fleets of J/22s, J/70s, and J/105s.

The eight teams competing in the J/70 class were certainly not expecting a “master class” in how to get a 70 around the race track, but that’s exactly what they got!  “Schooling” the fleet was David Koski’s SOUL from Edgewater YC, winning 6 of 7 races to win by a large margin.  Second with four 2nds and the only boat to “steal” a win from SOUL was Lee Sackett’s AQUA DUMP, with 15 pts total in seven races.  A distant third was Tod Sackett’s FM with 23 pts total.

In the J/22s, a similar scenario played out, with Tim Roberts’ DEUCE winning every single race in their seven race series for a total of 7 pts.   Second was Jim Latham’s RAMBLE ON with 14 pts and third place went to Mike Meaney’s MEANIAC.

Unlike their stablemates, the J/105s had a fierce battle for the top spots on the podium.  In the end, just four points separated the top four boats.  After starting off with three 1sts in a row, Robert Mock’s crew on DARK HORSE stumbled a bit to post top three finishes; in the end they won with 15 pts total.  Just three points back, two boats were tied on 18 pts each, with Stephen Mitcham’s BREEZIN BAYOU taking 2nd place on count-back over Jim Uhlir’s TRIO.  Just one point behind them was Cindy Einhouse’s OVATION to take 4th position.  Rounding out the top five was Rick Drucker’s KNOT GUILTY in 5th place.
For more Cleveland 216 Regatta sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

J/70 North American Championship Preview

J/70 sailngs offshore(Rye, NY)- It is going to be a busy week on the famous Rye Point that extends into Long Island Sound off Peningo Neck in Rye, New York!  The American YC is hosting their HPR Regatta on the weekend from October 7-8 for over a half-dozen classes (dinghies mostly) that also includes J/70 teams.  That event will act as a “warm-up” and training regatta for many teams that will then be participating in the 2017 J/70 North American Championship that starts racing on Thursday, October 12th and finishes on Sunday, October 15th.

While it may not be the largest J/70 North Americans held in recent history, it is more than making up for the numbers with a deeply talented fleet and all of the top American teams that sailed the AUDI J/70 World Championship at YC Costa Smeralda in Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy.  Fifty-eight teams are registered and that includes Peter Duncan’s RELATIVE OBSCURITY, not only the Rear Commodore of the host American YC, but also the current J/70 World Champion! Brian Keane’s SAVASANA team is also participating; the runner-up in this year’s J/70 Worlds!

Then, the 2016 J/70 World Champion is sailing- Joel Ronning’s CATAPULT from Excelsior, Minnesota. Jumping ship to sail his own boat will be Jud Smith aboard AFRICA from Marblehead, MA (Jud was crew with Peter Duncan at the Worlds in Sardinia)- he is an Etchells 22 North American and World Champion, too.  Joining those elite teams will be the first J/70 North American Championship winner and the first J/70 Worlds Corinthians winner- the duo on MUSE with skipper Heather Gregg and Joe Bardenheier.

Many other top crews will be in the mix on the leaderboard that have won or placed in various NOOD Regattas, Charleston Race Weeks, Bacardi Miami, Midwinters, or Quantum Winter Series; including Doug Strebel’s BLACK RIVER RACING, Melissa & Andrew Fisher’s BUTTON FLY, Mallory & Andrew Loe’s DIME, Jack Franco’s FLOJITO 3 BALL JT, Trey Sheehan’s HOOLIGAN: FLAT STANLEY RACING, Jenn & Ray Wulff’s JOINT CUSTODY, Bruce Golison’s MIDLIFE CRISIS, Martie Kullman’s NEW WAVE, John Brim’s RIMETTE, Pam Rose’s ROSEBUD, Peter Vessella’s RUNNING WILD, Will Welles’ SCAMP, Dave Franzel’s SPRING, Bruno Pasquinelli’s STAMPEDE, Scott & Alex Furnary’s ANY COLOUR, and John & Molly Baxter’s TEAM VINEYARD VINES.  For more J/70 North American Championship sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

J/88 Class Update

J/88 fleet start (Rye, NY)- The J/88 class continues to enjoy excellent class racing in the Great Lakes and the East Coast.  Here is a class report and update from J/88 Class President Iris Vogel, she is the owner of DEVIATION.

“For starters, we would like to congratulate the winner of the STC Championships at Rochester YC, Al Minella and the team of ALBONDINGAS, well done!  Second went to DEVIATION and third to ESCAPE.  Team ALBONDIGAS also took first in the “Can One” Thursday night series.

At American Yacht Club’s annual Fall Series Regatta, we congratulate Doug Newhouse and the team of YONDER for an excellent performance followed by Elizabeth Barry and team ESCAPE in second and team DEVIATION in third.

In both regattas, the racing was extremely close and every competitor had great races with many different boats taking firsts in individual races.  Saturday, 9/30 finally gave us some big breeze to show what the J/88 can do- gusts hit 29 kts at one point on Saturday!

With two great OD events behind us, let's finish the 2017 Long Island Sound season in style.  There is still the Gearbuster (IHYC) and Manhasset Bay Fall Series - dates are October 14th, 15th, & 21st.  Let's have a strong showing at these two end of season events!

Also, we look forward to some J/88s that are also participating and supporting college sailing teams in the Intercollegiate Offshore Regatta at Larchmont YC.

For all who are planning their winter schedule, we will again focus on three great regattas!  They are:
  • Jan 19-21- J/FEST St Petersburg- St Petersburg, FL
  • Feb 16-18- St Petersburg NOOD Regatta- St Petersburg, FL
  • Apr 12-15- Charleston Race Week- Charleston, SC
Please note- in St Pete, the J/88 fleet has a special rate for storage at the Sailor's Wharf.

I look forward to seeing you all in the fall and winter events!  Best, Iris”

What is interesting to note about the J/88s is that it is a very “women-friendly” owner class- with four top teams all owned and skippered by very good women sailors!

For more J/88 one-design class information   For more J/88 family speedster sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Hamble Winter Series Kick-Off Weekend!

J/97E Jumblesail II sailing Hamble series (Hamble, England)- The 36th edition of the Hamble Winter Series kicked off on Saturday 30 September, and included the inaugural IRC Spinlock Autumn Championship, organized by the Hamble River Sailing Club.

Five races were held for all classes competing in the IRC Spinlock Autumn Championship, and for those competing in the Hamble Winter Series, two races were completed on Sunday 1 October.

A wide variety of yachts racing under IRC and in One Designs, enjoyed a perfect southerly wind of 15 knots on Saturday with a 16-18 knot southwesterly intensifying condition on Sunday, typifying fantastic autumnal racing.

J/111 McFLY sailing Hamble Winter seriesFor the Spinlock IRC Autumn Championship, in IRC 1 Class, Tony Mack’s J/111 McFLY is lying in second for the series with a 4-1-3-8-1 for 17 pts total.  Third is Chris Daniel’s J/122 JUNO with a 6-2-5-4-3 for 20 pts.  However, it is very tight with two more J/111s just off the mark; Louise Makin’s JOURNEYMAKER II is currently 5th with a 5-7-6-2 tally for 25 pts and Cornel Riklin’s J/111 JITTERBUG is 6th with a 2-6-4-6.5 record for 25.5 pts.

Meanwhile, Roger Phillips’ J/109 is second in IRC 2 Class and is being chased by Chris Burleigh’s J/109 JYBE TALKIN in 4th place and Bill Stock’s J/109 JENGU in 5th.

Rachel Hunt's J/97E JUMBLESAIL 2 is winning IRC Three division quite handily with triple 1sts in her tally, followed by David Greenhalgh’s J/92 J’RONIMO in 2nd place and Annie & Andy Howe’s J/97 BLACKJACK II in 3rd position.

And, Ian Smyth's team is winning the J/88 Class, with Kirsty & David Apthorp’s J/DREAM in 2nd and Richard Cooper’s JONGLEUR in third place.

The results from Sunday 1 October constituted the first round of the Hamble Winter Series.

In IRC One, the J/112E DAVANTI TYRES, skippered by Paul and Marie-Claude Heys took second on the first weekend, with a 3rd in the first race and a 1st in the second race!

J/88 sailing Hamble Winter seriesIn IRC Three, three J/teams are leading a sweep of the class.  David Greenhalgh's J/92 J’RONIMO finished the weekend on a high, winning the last race to win class with a 2-1. “Excellent courses, and just the right length,” commented Greenhalgh!  Stablemates Annie & Andy Howe’s J/97 BLACKJACK II are in second by just one point with a 1-3.  And, Robin Stevenson’s J/92S UPSTART is third with a 3-2.

In the J/88 Class Kirsty and David Apthorp's J-DREAM was the victor for the weekend with a 1-2.  Ian Smyth’s GRB 2688R is second with a 3-1 and lying third is Richard Cooper’s JONGLEUR with a 2-4.

The Hamble River Sailing Club was a hive of activity after racing, with all competitors, friends and family welcome to enjoy a vibrant atmosphere with a licensed bar.

Racing organized by the Hamble River Sailing Club continues 7-8 October, with another double helping of exciting racing in the Solent. The Hamble One-Design Championship, supported by Grapefruit Graphics, and The Bugle PH, Hamble, will consist of fast thrilling sportboats racing over two days. 30 teams have already entered, with room for more! The Second round of the Hamble Winter Series will take place on Sunday October 8th.   Sailing photo credits- Hamo Thornycroft   For more Spinlock Hamble Winter Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Hungarian Bakoczy Crowned J/24 European Champion!

J/24s sailing Europeans on Lake Balaton, HungaryAmerican Whittemore Tops Open Europeans
(Lake Balaton, Hungary)- Two hundred fifty competitors from eight nations sailed on forty-eight boats in the 2017 J/24 European Championship, that was organized by the Balatonfüredi Yacht Club in Balatonfüred, Hungary between September 24th and October 1st.

The Opening Day kicked off with beautiful sunshine and a pleasant, but light, easterly wind which some of the competitors took advantage of for training. Unfortunately, the wind completely died down by the late afternoon, so the practice race was canceled by the Race Committee.  That outcome presaged what was going to happen for the rest of the regatta, a lot of time spent waiting for winds to develop enough to run proper races for the aggressive fleet of J/24s.  In fact, it may have been the first Europeans in recent memory where every race took place in less than 8 kts of wind, with just 150% genoas flown, and rare moments of crews sitting on the windward rail hiked out hard.  Nevertheless, the weather was pleasant, sometimes cool, but those warmer days brought out the “shorts & shades” for the more ambitious crews.

Hungarian J24 crew- European ChampionsThe regatta marked the first time a Hungarian crew was victorious in the continental championship!  After ten races, winning the 2017 European Championship title was the young Robert Bakoczy and his local Lake Balaton crew on FGF SAILING TEAM (Domonkos Rozsnyay, Kristof Takacsy, Levente Takacsy, Maxim Szigeti).

“The J/24 European Championship was a great adventure for us. It was great that there was no pressure on us and this brought us victory. We are extremely delighted. I don’t know, I am just overwhelmed right now. It hasn’t yet sunk in that this has happened to us and we won,” said Bakoczy after his win.

Silver went to Farkas Litkey with his mixed Hungarian-Italian Team on board PELLE NERA (Alberto Forti, Paolo Ceccamore, Barbara Frigyer, Mihaly Szanto), while the bronze was earned by Balazs Tomai and his Team on JENESIS (Tamas Tompa, Balazs Boros, Gabor Nagy).

The Open Trophy was taken home by American Keith Whittemore and his Team on FURIO from Seattle, Washington (Kevin Downey, Shelby Milne, Brian Thomas, Mark Rodgers). “It was amazing to race on this beautiful lake where, to our surprise and biggest delight, powerboats are banned! You cannot believe how lucky you are with this. We had 10 great races, great organization, fair start lines,” said Whittemore after the races. Here is how it all took place over the four days of competition.

J/24s sailing on Hungary's Lake BalatonDay 1
Two races were sailed on September 27th, the first day. Both races were dominated by the Hungarian teams, they occupied 10 spots in the top 20. JUKEBOX, helmed by local Miklos Rauschenberger, secured 2 wins by confident sailing, followed by the current American National Champion Keith Whittemore on FURIO, while last year’s World Champion, the German team on JJONE helmed by Daniel Frost and his crew came in third.

The first race started out in light, easterly 7-9 kt winds at 1000 hrs as scheduled. First start was under U flag, but loads of excited competitors went over the start line early, so the second start was under the Black Flag. Seemingly, the teams were more careful at the second start in order not to be disqualified.

JUKEBOX took over the lead after the first upwind leg and won the race. In second was JJONE, followed by fellow German LUV, helmed by Tom Stryi. The wind lost its strength by the 2nd race, dropping to 5-7 knots, further boosting the Hungarian teams’ self-confidence on the start line. The tricky winds require expert starting technique, where choosing one’s starting position is key to a successful race. Those starting closer to the pin end proved to be faster coming up the 1st upwind mark.

Six Hungarian teams got there fastest. 1st to round the mark was Tamas Madarasz and his team on REBEL. The first downwind leg was fastest on the right side. After the first round, the dying wind was also shifting northwards, forcing a course alteration. The frontrunners split into two. The 2 leading teams, JUKEBOX and PELLE NERA chose to remain on the left, while the rest of the fleet kept to the right hoping to find stronger breezes.

J/24s sailing Europeans in HungaryBy the end of the 2nd race, winds had died almost completely, though the spinnakers were still holding up nicely. Patience and focus were the strongest virtue to finish the race. The second race was ruled by JUKEBOX, while 3-time Soling World Champion Farkas Litkey came in second on PELLE NERA followed by fellow Hungarian Madarasz on REBEL. As the wind completely died, there was no chance to do the third race.

After two races, JUKEBOX was leading the regatta with 2 wins. He summarized the day, “In today’s light winds local knowledge was definitely an advantage. We knew at both starts that we must choose the pin side and it proved right. It is very good to see that the Hungarian teams are doing well, though today’s tricky conditions haven’t given foreign competitors the chance to really prove how good they are.”

FURIO’s Whittemore was second with two 4th places at both races, while JJONE was sitting in 3rd place.

J/24s sailing on Lake Balaton, HungaryDay 2
The second race day continued with two further races. After four races, three Hungarian teams ruled the leaderboard. JUKEBOX continued to lead, shadowed by JENESIS in second and PELLE NERA in third.

Due to the black flag start rules, yesterday’s favorites, the FURIO and JJONE lost their top positions, as they haven’t been able to drop their BFD’s.

The day started out beautifully in 7-9 knots of easterly winds. The first three teams to round the first upwind mark during the 3rd race were Germany’s Tom Stryi (LUV), Hungary’s Gabor Sallai (IJRONCAT) and PELLE NERA, keeping their positions until the finish of that race. Germany’s Stefan Karsunke on SULLBERG finished fourth, while the current overall leader on JUKEBOX crossed the finish line 5th. The middle of the fleet pretty much clustered up due to dropping winds and finished really close to each other, so the Race Committee decided to shorten the course on the third and fourth legs.

Race 4 was preceded by an on-water postponement, as the wind started shifting and it also dropped well below 5 knots. After a bit of waiting the race course moved southwards, a new course was set and racing continued. Excited teams were unable to hold back enough, six teams were BFD, including FURIO and JJONE, so they were forced to watch the race from the sidelines.

The repeat start for Race 4 was clear. The rounding order at the 1st upwind mark was Jörn Harms on VITESSE, Tomai’s JENESIS, and JUKEBOX. The order pretty much remained the same at the end of the first round at the downwind gate.  JUKEBOX decided to take the left-hand mark and continue upwind on the right while JENESIS opted for the right-hand mark and sailed on the left upwind. The 2nd upwind mark was rounded by VITESSE first, followed by JENESIS, then FAST FORWARD. The race was won by Jörn Harms on VITESSE, JENESIS finished second, while the 3rd was taken by a female skipper, Johanne Maske!

Race 5 started in somewhat annoyingly shifty 5-6-knot easterly winds that later completely died, so the race committee decided to abandon the race to the biggest disappointment for the two-race leaders- FURIO and PELLE NERA!

J/24s sailing downwind on Lake Balaton, HungaryDay 3
Incredibly, four races were sailed on the third day of the regatta, for eight races total! Friday was a busy day, not only in race numbers but also in number of protests, so the international jury was kept busy as well!  Litkey’s PELLE NERA took over the lead, though tied on points with Whittemore’s FURIO.

The day started out with a shore postponement. After a short wait, the fleet headed out to the course area. The fleet sailed Race 5 in 6-8-knot easterly winds. JUKEBOX won Race 5, followed by Frank Schönfeldt’s HENK, Peer Kook’s BOCKDRUF third and JENESIS fourth.

Winds dropped by Race 6, though it was about 5-6 knots at the start. Winds dropped further during the race, forcing the RC to shorten the length of the 2nd upwind leg. Race 5 finished with 5 Hungarian teams occupying the top 5 slots- PELLE NERA, Robert Sarina’s JBOND, JENESIS, Bakoczy’s FGF SAILING TEAM, and IJRONCAT. Race 7 was preceded by a lengthy on-water postponement, as the Race Committee decided to move the course southwards in hope of more steady winds. The new course was set and Race 7 started in an 8-knot northeasterly.

The start for Race 7 had to be repeated due to a general recall, 3 teams including leading JUKEBOX collected BFD’s. The 2nd start for Race 7 was clear. The Swedish FOR FUN crew rounded the upwind mark first, followed by VITESSE and IJRONCAT. The order shifted by the downwind mark, which was rounded first by FGF Sailing Team, followed by FURIO and EVNIKI. FGF ended up winning race 7 by consistent sailing. VITESSE came in second, FURIO third.

The wind had dropped to 5-6 knots by Race 8 while keeping its direction, so no course change was needed for the last race of the day on Friday. Teams really had to be alert and decide which side to choose that would bring them fresh breezes. JENESIS opted for the left and rounded the 1st upwind mark first, beating VITESSE and PELLE NERA. At the end of the first lap, VITESSE overcame JENESIS and held onto the lead position until the finish.

Jörn Harm from Vitesse commented, “It is difficult to sail here, as there is relatively little wind and there are lot of wind direction changes and there are no waves. We, from the North of Germany on the Baltic Sea are used to different conditions: mostly a lot more wind and waves, where it is somewhat easier to sail.  Nevertheless, the organization of the regatta has been perfect.”

PELLE NERA finished second, FURIO came in third, JENESIS landed in 4th while FGF Sailing Team nailed the 5th spot.

The winner of the day was definitely Farkas Litkey, whose consistent sailing paid off with his PELLE NERA team taking the lead in the regatta.

Litkey commented after the races, “We sailed 4 races today out of the total 8. We had four good races, so we are happy with our scores! It was light wind, which benefits us as we are fast in light winds. We have enough speed there to stay among or ahead of the best. The Regatta organization is fantastic. It is incredible that there are 48 boats. I’m truly impressed. Shore events are perfect. New videos, edited every night, the day’s photos displayed is really unique. I haven’t seen this at any other regattas. This is the best organization, I’ve ever seen!”

J/24s in yacht harbor on Lake Balaton, HungaryDay 4
Despite the challengingly shifty conditions, the Race Committee, headed by Bence Fluck, managed to run two more races on the final day.

Race 9 was sailed in 7-8 kts northeasterly winds in which 3 German Teams gathered BFD penalties due to jumping out early. LUV was the first boat to reach the 1st upwind gate, shadowed by the young girls-only team on GER 5266, while DJANGO rounded third. By the end of the 2nd leg, leading positions had shifted as the left side of the course proved faster, but LUV and the girls on GER 5266 managed to hold onto their leads while EVNIKI completed the leg third. The second upwind leg saw LUV maintain their lead, but 2 teams came in from the right, JUKEBOX in second and FURIO in third. In the end Stry’s LUV won Race 9, with JUKEBOX in second and FGF in third in a massive comeback!

Race 10 was a nerve-wrecking course, testing the endurance of the teams with its dropping, shifty winds.

EVNIKI was first to round the 1st upwind mark, followed by Dutch Team JOOL and JMANIA.  At the downwind mark, EVNIKI swapped positions with Team JOOL. Dropping winds clustered up the teams at the mark, there were fierce struggles for inside positions, coupled by load protest calls. Team JOOL struggled to the 2nd upwind mark to round first, followed by EVNIKI and VITESSE. The Dutch Team JOOL won the race, beating EVNIKI and VITESSE in 2nd and 3rd, respectively.

The Race Committee was determined to do an 11th race that had to be started by 4 pm. The wind was picking up to 7-8 knots, shifted east, but the 1st start attempt had to be interrupted by an AP due to a sudden wind shift. The 11th race started clear at the 2nd start attempt, though radically shifting conditions forced an abandonment, closing the regatta with a total of ten races in very challenging weather!

German J/24 women's team- ROTOGIRLFollowing the J/24 Class legacy of awarding special prizes, here are some of those winners below:
  • “The Old Boat Trophy”- was earned by JUST A BIG DINGHY- helmed by Annamári Sabján. The boat had been used by a Swiss fisherman who shortened the mast by 6 cm. So, the mast had to be restored to its original length before the European Championship in order to comply with class regulations. The girls-only team went to great lengths to make their boat race compliant!
  • The “Ladies Trophy”- was won by Emily Kern and her German crew of all-women on ROTOGIRL.
  • The “Top Youth Boat Trophy”- was won by the GER 3634 team, FAST F helmed by Johanne Maske.
  • The “Top Senior Boat Trophy”- went to Italian Attilio De Battista on ITA 498- PILGRIM.
Erik Hercsel, the President of the Hungarian J/24 Class concluded the event as follows, “I am grateful that I had a chance to sail the same course with such great sailors during this regatta. Seeing the Hungarian fleet, the teams, and the helms achieving such great results makes me even happier. Long months of organization and many late nights preceded this event. Big ‘thank you’ to my entire Team who made this event such a success, to the many supporters, volunteers, J/24 Class members, to Balatonfüredi Yacht Club, and, of course, to our sponsors whose support was inevitable in the realization of this great event.”   J/24 Hungary Facebook group.

J/24 Hungary sailing videos
First day- https://www.facebook.com/hunj24class/videos/1574122279311655/
Second day- https://www.facebook.com/hunj24class/videos/1574942895896260/
Third day- https://www.facebook.com/hunj24class/videos/1576005189123364/
Fourth day- https://www.facebook.com/hunj24class/videos/1577399228983960/

For Balatonfüredi YC information   For more J/24 European Championship sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

STC College Big Boat Regatta Preview

J/133 sailing STC Intercollegiate regatta- college big boats! (Larchmont, NY)- While American YC’s HPR Regatta will be taking place off Rye, NY, their “next door” neighbors on western Long Island Sound- Larchmont YC- will be hosting what has become the most wildly popular event in the college sailing season across the America’s and Europe!  That is the Storm Trysail Club’s annual Intercollegiate Offshore Regatta (a.k.a. the “college big boat” regatta)!

This year’s event will be held on the weekend of October 7th and 8th at the Larchmont Yacht Club in Larchmont, New York. This is an invitational event and will feature racing in approximately five classes of offshore yachts: J/105, J/109, J/44, PHRF 35 foot-boats and IRC 40-boats.

The event has grown every year and last year the event was able to accommodate almost 400 college sailors. European teams have come from France, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.  In addition, several colleges from Canada fielded crews and from the USA teams came from literally every corner of America and the Great Lakes- from west to east and north to south!

Thanks to the high-quality list of sponsors, some private donations, and the generosity of participating boat owners, Storm Trysail Foundation and Larchmont Yacht Club are able to run this regatta at no cost for the college sailing teams! The sponsors include Rolex, North Sails, Gill North America, Safe Flight Instruments, Flintrock Construction, and Dimension-Polyant.  For more Storm Trysail College Big Boat Regatta sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Spain's Stephane Azzoni Loves Sailing J/80s!

Spanish J/80 sailor (Barcelona, Spain)Stephane Azzoni- a J/80 and J/92 sailor from Spain reports- “I would like to share the pleasure I always have sailing my J/92 and now my J/80, single handed or with crew, fantastic boats really!  I am still playing the lottery, let’s see if I'm lucky and I can buy a J/121!”  Stephane continues to explain his love for J/Boats:

“I bought my J/92 after sailing a Mini-Transat 6.50 for some years: I was looking for a more versatile boat, that would allow me to bring onboard my small family for some short cruises, as well as to do some single-hand racing.

I found "Geronimo" near Barcelona, in a port where she had been quietly resting for 3 years. She was equipped with a new set of sails, almost never used.

After renaming the boat "Vol De Nuit" (from a Saint Exupéry novel), doing a basically cosmetic refit and buying a new running rigging in Dyneema, I started sailing and training in this nice playground that is the Costa Brava.

I regularly took part in some very interesting coastal and offshore singlehanded regattas.

I mostly remember one, the Dragonera, from El Balis (a port located a few miles to the north of Barcelona) to the island named La Dragonera, located to the South West of Mallorca Island.

J80 sailing offshore of SpainI say mostly because I had the chance to win the regatta (in compensated time) for 1 minute and 30 seconds on the second boat, after 120 miles and 21+ hours of racing, a 49 feet skippered by a great navigator who would then become a great friend and with who I continue to sail doublehanded on his magnificent X46.

After that regatta I brought the boat to Pollença, on the North part of Mallorca, a beautiful bay with plenty of small beaches to anchor. My family arrived by plane and we spent a week sailing and enjoying the bay every day.

The J/92 is more a day boat than a cruiser, the headroom inside is limited and the kitchen minimalist, but the cockpit is huge. Anyway, as it was the end of June, we spent most of our time outside and had some really great holidays onboard.

Under sail she's an easy boat, stable, fast under asymmetric spinnaker and perfect for solo sailing as well as for sailing without an experienced crew.

I sold "Vol de Nuit" to her new owner, a very kind Greek sailor who made the delivery by sea from Spain to Greece with some friends. We are still in touch and he's enjoying a lot sailing and racing his new toy. According to the latest news from him, she's the boat to beat in the local fleet, winning almost every race out there.

After that I briefly owned a racing boat of 35 feet and finally bought my actual toy, a J/80 named "Valentina": she's really an amazing boat.

J/80 offshore double-handed sailingI mounted an autopilot Raymarine ST2000+ to be able to sail single-hand, but my program is mainly the local club regattas with a small crew, and the J/80 regattas with the Barcelona fleet, with a crew of young guns coming from the dinghy world, and full of talent.

And what a level in this fleet in Spain!! These guys have been sailing their J/80 for 6 years or more now, and they do it very, very well: the first 5 are really impressive.

Every time I have the chance to sail with them, I learn a lot and realize how much I still have to learn from the boat and from them.

I can only speak well of the J/80. If I consider the J/92 to be a good boat, for me the J/80 is nearly perfect in this size: well-built, strong, easy to handle, very fast under asymmetric spinnaker, and at the same time very stable, with a tremendous marine behavior for a 8 meter boat only, as at ease with 5 knots of wind, than with 25 or more.

Enjoy this J/80 planing mode video- again!!!It also appears to be very competitive under ORC handicap in a mix fleet. This year, we even won a local championship (in our class and overall in corrected time), in windy conditions, beating a TP52, a DK46, a GS44R and some 40 and 35 feet boats, after a coastal race the first day and 2 windward leeward races the day after, amazing!!

A very important thing I would like to add is that, unlike most of the large-scale production shipbuilders, when I call J-Composites in France for some technical advice, there is always a technician available to inform me- great service!!

That said, I must admit being in love with the J/111 and the J/122. Therefore, I keep on playing the lottery, just in case luck smiles at me and allows me to buy a J/121: my absolute dream!!  Fair winds to everybody.  Best regards, Stephane Azzoni”

J/80 (with Raymarine ST2000+ autopilot):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zFVKmqlyF_g
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AMbwPy3gqm0
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j3gU-SDtmqw
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qQOqyoR7EaU

J/92 Vol Nuit- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eEljfZlEk2A Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Annapolis Boat Show Update!

J/121 sailing fast under spinnaker
On Display- NEW J/121, J/112E, & J/70
(Annapolis, MD)- Make your last minute plans now to visit the famous US Sailboat Show in Annapolis, MD that runs from October 5th to 9th over the Columbus Day holiday weekend.  Sailors from around the world gather on miles of docks in beautiful historic Annapolis for this internationally acclaimed sailboat show, recognized as the largest, most prestigious, and only remaining in-water sailboat show in the world.

J/Boats, in partnership with our mid-Atlantic dealer North Point Yacht Sales, will have on display the NEW J/121 offshore speedster, as well as the J/112E cruiser-racer and the famous J/70 one-design speedster.

J/Boats’ 40th Anniversary and North Pointe Yacht Sales 10th Anniversary Dock Party!
Please join us and our boat show neighbors (Musto, Quantum Sails, Selden, Spinlock) on Friday, October 6th from 6:30pm to 8:30pm at the United States Sailboat Show on Dock S- look for the red J/flags in front of Pusser’s Restaurant/ Bar.  Thanks also to our sponsors- AKZO NOBEL (AWLGRIP & INTERLUX), Sweetwater Brewing, and the Maryland Coastal Conservation Association.

For more U.S. Sailboat Show information

PEK: SPORT Wins Act VI- Russian J/70 Sailing League

J/70 Russia Sailing League- Nizhny Novgorod, RussiaMoscow QPRO Sailing Team Leads Overall Series
(Nizhny Novgorod, Russia)- Lying 400 km east of Moscow’s famous Red Square, the confluence of the famous Volga and Oka Rivers and the famous Kremlin fort and Chkalov Stairs overlooking the sailing area, was the setting for the sixth regatta in the Russian J/70 Sailing League. The city of Nizhny Novgorod (once called Gorky- in honor of the famous Russian novelist- Maxim Gorky) was initially famous as “the Detroit of Russia” and is now home to three-dozen high-tech R&D centers and is, essentially, the I.T. center of Russia (even INTEL has 500 engineers in R&D working there!).

J/70s sailing on Volga River- RussiaEleven teams from across Russia showed up for the penultimate regatta at Nizhny in the season-long Russia J/70 Sailing League that started out in April at the famous Black Sea resort of Sochi and will finish the season there for their Grand Finale. Those teams included Koreg Sailing Team (Sochi, helmsman Oleg Kuzmin), QPRO Sailing Team (Moscow, Egor Zuev), CARAMBA! (Moscow, Dmitry Kuznetsov), Calypso (Tuapse/ Moscow, Vladimir Shishkin), Traktor Sailing Team (Chelyabinsk, Eduard Podshivalov), PEK: SPORT (Moscow, Maxim Kuzmin), Ugar Crew (Moscow, Alisa Kirilyuk), ZidArt Sailing Team Moscow, Zoran Paunovich), Team Nizhny Novgorod Children's River Shipping Company (Nizhny Novgorod, Danila Lysanov), Tramontana (Nizhny Novgorod, Yuri Luzhbin), and the Winners Sailing Team (St. Petersburg, Victor Kapitonenko).

The sailing teams were treated with good sailing conditions all weekend-long.  Each team sailed 27 races, seven on Friday, thirteen on Saturday, and thirteen more on Sunday!

J/70s sailing Russia leagueThe winner of the regatta was Moscow’s PEK: SPORT, which was skippered by Maxim Kuzmin; the crew consisted of Vadim Filatov, Dmitry Ievlev, Dmitry Popkov and Konstantin Besputin.  This team is unique. They joined the Russian J/70 Sailing League at the fourth stage of the season in Pskov (Krivsk).  They won the regatta, repeated their winning performance in St. Petersburg, and now they did the same in Nizhny Novgorod!  An amazing performance!

The first day PEK: SPORT did not perform well. But then, they found their form and after the second day of sailing ended up in 2nd overall in the provisional rankings.  Then, after another solid performance on Sunday’s finale, they had six 1sts and 14 more podium finishes!

J/70 Russia Novgorod winners!Taking the silver for the regatta was another Moscow team- QPRO Sailing Team with skipper Egor Zuev, and crew of Denis Rozhkov, Alexander Grishunin and Vyacheslav Bukin.  While leading the regatta after Saturday with a phenomenal four-race winning streak, they could not keep it together on Saturday.  Ultimately, they finished 11 pts back behind Maxim and her crew of sailing mercenaries.

The bronze was taken by the Sochi KOREG Sailing Team, skippered by Oleg Kuzmin with crew of Inal Berbekov, Artem Avetisyan, Andrei Ignatenko and Yulia Dmitrienko. The gap between silver and bronze was only 4 points.

“On the final day of the regatta, a stable western wind blew with a force of 12 knots,” said Chief RC PRO Dmitriy Shatagin. “The race was held at a high pace. I managed to run 13 starts, and it was very good! At the end of the final day, the protests were again brought to the finish line, but many of them were, shall we say, "dismantled" between the skippers themselves. In general, all three racing days were successful, and with excellent weather. Impressions are positive."

J/70s sailing Russia Sailing League"This is the third regatta for us in the league and the third time we win," said Vadim Filatov of PEK: SPORT. “Dmitry Ievlev and I have been engaged in rally-raids for six years, and now sailing became the next page of our lives. And, we never regretted that we came to yachting!! This is the kind of sport where emotions overwhelm, where you start every 20 minutes in a new race. Sometimes we win, sometimes we lose! It turns out that throughout the racing day something new is always happening. This is an unforgettable experience. An unforgettable holiday! There are not enough words- many emotions. I'm ready to scream, laugh! The sailing is so cool!”

“It was not easy- the weather conditions did not allow us to relax,” said the helmsman of the team-winner- Maxim Kuzmin. “In the first race day, the wind changed very much, in the second the wind also made its own corrections. But, the third day did not disappoint me, it was even, though weaker, than the day before. The race was significantly influenced by the current: it was possible to make a very big mistake at the start, well, in the course of the race, too, it was necessary to take this moment into account ... The regatta was chasing 11 teams, which is a record for the Premier Division. Plus, some of the teams have intensified their efforts with new crew for the Premier Division. Accordingly, the intensity of the struggle was high, and nothing was clear until the finish. Only 5 minutes before the award, we learned that we became champions!”

"We went through the regatta well," says Yegor Zuev, from the Moscow-based QPRO Sailing Team. “The rivals are strong, the fleet is very even. The water area is non-standard, with a strong current, with good wind conditions. Everything is great, but I would like to see that in the Premier Division there was direct refereeing on the water, which would allow making the right decisions immediately on the water.”

Russian J/70 Sailing League sailors"The race was interesting, tense," says Oleg Kuzmin, the coach of the Koreg Sailing Team from Sochi. “The fight was going on until the last day, until the last start. We tried to show the best result, and won third place. The water area is not easy: the current, which always makes its own corrections, and the wind here is also complicated- unstable. The first race day was generally something for everyone! But, even in these conditions, we tried to show everything we could. As for our rivals, with each stage they are all more serious and serious. Many tried to strengthen their teams, so in one of the teams they recruited the current Melges 32 World Champion and the Melges 20 European Champion- Konstantin Besputin. Is this a world-class level here in the middle of Russia- on the Volga River in Nizhny!? The panel of judges worked remarkably well, the race was going well, without delay. Thanks to the hard work of the judges, good fellows.”

The Grand Finale for the Russian J/70 Sailing League takes place in Sochi (site of the Winter Olympics) from October 19-22.

J/70 fleet- ready to sail off MoscowSo far, six stages have been held in Sochi, Sevastopol, Moscow, Pskov (Krivsk), St. Petersburg and Nizhny Novgorod. After the 6th stage, the leading troika has not changed for the overall series. Leading at the current time is the QPRO Sailing Team from Moscow, followed by the KOREG Sailing Team from Sochi in second place, then the CARAMBA! Team from Moscow in third, the CALYPSO Team from Yuapse/Moscow in fourth and the PEK: SPORT Team from Moscow in 5th place!

The organizers wish to “Thank” the government and the Ministry of Sport of the Nizhny Novgorod region, the sailing association of the Nizhny Novgorod region, the hosts for this stage- the YC Leto and the Tramontana Sailing Club, as well as the Nizhny Novgorod Children's River Shipping company and, personally, the Commander Vladimir Ivanovich Dyakov.

Watch some fantastic “3D” virtual tracking of all the races here- incredibly well done software by Tracker Regatta3d.ru.  Here’s one example to view

Watch a highlight video of the Nizhny event here  Follow the Russian J/70 Sailing League on Facebook  For more Russian J/70 Sailing League information Add to Flipboard Magazine.