Tuesday, December 18, 2018

J/44 Wins Palm Beach “Race to the Buffet”!

J/44 Kenai sailing Nassau Cup race KENAI Leads SORC Islands In the Stream Series
(Palm Beach, FL)- Elapsed time records fell in the Sailfish Club of Florida’s 62nd annual Wirth M. Munroe Ocean Race to Palm Beach, the second event of the 2018-19 SORC Islands in the Stream Series- the fabled Miami to Palm Beach “Race to the Buffet” wrapped up with one of the best feasts in sailing. Twenty-eight teams raced in near-perfect conditions on a new two-course format that started on December 7 in Miami and Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

“We are delighted that this year’s race was a success at every level and encouraged that the excitement around our event reflects the growing momentum in the South Florida racing scene,” said Wirth Munroe Event Chair, Tom Bowler of the Sailfish Club.

“We had records broken, spectacular weather, a diverse fleet across a broad spectrum that included veterans and newcomers alike, and the wonderful post-race camaraderie that has made the Wirth Munroe Race such a special event.”

J/92 sailing Nassau Cup RaceIn last Friday’s second event of the 2018-2019 Southern Ocean Racing Conference (SORC), Chris and Karen Lewis’s Texas-based J/44 KENAI won the race Palm Beach.

Their first overall finish in ORC scoring paired with their 4th overall finish in last month’s first event of the SORC, the Miami-Nassau Race, puts them in first place Overall in the standings for the SORC Islands in the Stream Series.

With 12 to 15 kts easterly breezes, race managers opted for ORC’s Triple Number Coastal/ Long Distance scoring model for medium wind conditions, resulting in close finishing scores for the leaders in the fleet. After six-plus hours of sailing the 60-mile course, KENAI’s victory was only 5 min 27 sec on corrected time over another Texan team, Andy Wescoat’s J/109 HARM’S WAY (who are lying in 4th overall in the series, just one point away from third).

Taking 5th place in ORC was the J/92 HILLBILLY sailed by Bradley Stowers.  Combined with their 3rd in the Nassau Cup Race, they are now sitting in the third spot on the overall leaderboard.

The next race, the classic Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Race starts Thursday, January 17, 2019 south of Port Everglades. Another Conch Grinder Race and party at the First Flight Island Restaurant and Brewery (formerly Kelly’s Caribbean) are on the agenda for the weekend.

The SORC Islands in the Stream Series consists of these five events:
  • Nov 15 – Nassau Cup Ocean Race
  • Dec 7 – Wirth M. Munroe Invitational Race
  • Jan 17 – Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Race
  • Jan 27 – Pineapple Cup Montego Bay Race
  • Mar 13 – Miami to Havana Race
Follow the SORC Islands In The Stream Series on Facebook   For more SORC Islands in the Stream Series sailing information
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Monday, December 17, 2018

J/121 Wins “Performance Yacht” @ British Yachting Awards!

J/121 wins British Yachting Awards
(London, England)- For the first time this year, Sailing Today teamed up with presenting partner MUSTO and sister magazine Yachts & Yachting to bring you the British Yachting Awards, truly a celebration of every aspect of the sailing world – from Caribbean cruising to high tech racing.

British Yachting Awards- Performance Yacht CategoryIn the Performance Yacht Category, there were over a dozen boats under consideration.  The sailing public voted in the United Kingdom and winning the Performance Yacht Category was the J/121 offshore speedster!  Here is what Y&Y/ Sailing Today had to say about the J/121.

“J/Boats reckons its J/121 is the best short-handed racer the company has built.  The 40-footer is designed to be sailed by five or fewer crew, which J reckon- and we agree- makes life a whole lot easier for racing skippers fed-up with rounding up 8 or 10 bodies every time they want to compete.

She looks the part too, boasting low, sleek lines and an easy to use cockpit with everything at hand- features that clearly proved popular with voters.

There is an 840-liter water ballast system built-in to compensate for extra crew bodies lined-up along the rail, and the low drag hull offers straight-line speed with high form stability.

There’s a standard suite of five sails plus the usual J/Boats retractable jib, and thanks to a comfortable fit-out down below, the J/121 is an ocean-capable racer that also functions beautifully as an adventurous daysailer, weekender, or fast cruiser. Sailing photo credit- Rick Tomlinson.  Learn more about the British Yachting Awards 2018 here.   Learn more about the J/121 Offshore Speedster here Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

J/99 World Debut @ Paris Show

J/99 Offshore Speedster- Paris Boat Show
(Paris, France)- The much anticipated introduction of the extraordinary J/99 shorthanded offshore speedster will be taking place at the famous “Salon Nautique”- a.k.a. the Paris International Boat Show- this coming week from December 8th to 16th at the Port de Versailles on the south side of Paris. The J/99 will be on display in Hall 1/ Stand 1 G62.  For more Salon Nautique Paris boat show information   Learn more about the J/99 Offshore Speedster here Add to Flipboard Magazine.

J/99 World Debut @ Paris Show

J/99 Offshore Speedster- Paris Boat Show
(Paris, France)- The much anticipated introduction of the extraordinary J/99 shorthanded offshore speedster will be taking place at the famous “Salon Nautique”- a.k.a. the Paris International Boat Show- this coming week from December 8th to 16th at the Port de Versailles on the south side of Paris. The J/99 will be on display in Hall 1/ Stand 1 G62.  For more Salon Nautique Paris boat show information   Learn more about the J/99 Offshore Speedster here Add to Flipboard Magazine.

J/122 Dominates Perth Offshore

J/122 sailing off Perth, Australia (Perth, Western Australia)- More “Thunder from Down Under!” Ian Clyne’s J/122 JOSS recently won the 140.0nm 2018 West Coaster Ocean Race off Perth, Western Australia.  Here is the report from Tony Bewsher, crewing aboard the J/122 JOSS.

“A very competitive fleet took part in the West Coaster 140nm overnight race on the weekend of the 24/25 November, including our J/122 JOSS.

The course was westerly from Fremantle, around Cape Vlamingh (the western end of Rottnest Island), then a 65.0nm northwards leg to a virtual mark set just of the historic coastal fishing town of Lancelin, and finally back south to the finish in Fremantle.

The race started in 8-10 knots SSW winds with the fleet jostling for position on the 1.0nm upwind beat to the first mark. JOSS rounded in 3rd position behind “Dirty Deeds” & “Weapon of Choice”, then the fleet sailed off on a broad reach out to the Western Windmills Fairway mark off the SE corner of Rottnest Island followed by an upwind beat in a dropping breeze along the south side of the island to Cape Vlamingh (the most westerly tip of the island and extremely exposed to the full forces of the Indian Ocean).

J/122 sailing off Perth, AustraliaAs the fleet approached Cape Vlamingh, the winds almost dropped out completely, making the rounding a slow frustrating affair. With an ever-growing cloud line slowly building on the horizon, the fleet edged westwards in our search for stronger more consistent breeze.

Big Sails help win big races, and as the clouds built overhead, the wind grew sufficiently for everyone to hoist their biggest spinnakers.

JOSS hoisted our big “Bright Green” A1.5 Spinnaker for this 65.0nm downwind run. The wind built steadily throughout the afternoon to 15-18 knots. We found ourselves dueling all the way to the Lancelin mark with “Obsession” (Mat1180) and “Weapon of Choice” (FB35). We even managed to pass these higher IRC rated boats midway along the track, only to have them battle back to lead us by a few hundred metres around the virtual top mark off Lancelin at approx. 2100 hrs Saturday night.

With a stunning full moon lighting up the ocean, we sailed for Fremantle in a more moderate breeze, maintaining contact with the 4 faster & lighter Div 1 yachts ahead of us. At sunrise we witnessed a beautiful Western Australian dawn with JOSS leading the fleet in both IRC & YAH, and eventually crossing the finish line at Fremantle at 0700 hrs Sunday morning in a time of 21:35:37.

Our winning margin on IRC was an impressive 27 minutes to the second placed boat “Obsession”, and 45 minutes to the 3rd placed boat “Alfresco”.

J/122 happy owner in Perth, AustraliaIt was 22 hours of perfect sailing conditions for JOSS with fluctuating winds between 8-18 knots and moving from an early light southerly on Saturday morning, swinging west and building until sunset throughout Saturday, then moderating over night to finish in an easterly land breeze.

The 140nm “WestCoaster” was a much more enjoyable sail compared to the recent similar distance overnight race, the “3 Ports Race” being knocked down 3 times during the night by 60-70 knot winds!!!

In sailing, winning is often a combination of great sailing by the boat & crew, and an equal measure of the “sea gods smiling on you”. There were many smiles over this weekend.

“Joss” has started the 2018/19 ORWA Offshore Season in strong form with 2 wins in Div 1 IRC, a 2nd, & a 5th, and 3 wins in Div 1 YAH & a 5th place.

With the lowest rating in the Div 1 Fleet in Western Australia, JOSS is proving how competitive J/Boats are against a very competitive fleet of top teams here in the West.” Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Friday, December 14, 2018

Hot Rum Series III Finale

J/105 sailing Hot Rum in San Diego, CA (San Diego, CA)- The third and final race of the San Diego YC Hot Rum Series took place this past weekend off San Diego’s beautiful harbor and Point Loma peninsula.  In the end, the results were a mixed bag of outcomes for various J/crews.

The one shining beacon of performance, not surprisingly, was the large turnout of J/105s and J/70s that were all lumped into PHRF Class 4.  J/Class honors flipped back and forth over the two weekends and, in the end, it was Dennis Case’s J/105 J-OK that took the silver, just barely losing overall honors in the last race. Third was Steve Wyman’s J/70 NUNUHUNU, fourth Erostino Dagfish’s J/105 VIGGEN and fifth Dave Vieregg’s J/70 SOGGY DOLLAR.  A commendable performance to all, four of the top five in class!  For more SDYC Hot Rum Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

J's Battle @ Hamble Winter Series Finale

J/109 sailing Hamble Winter Series (Hamble, England)- After last week's brief return of “the Beast from the East”, the forecast for Week 8 of the HYS Hamble Winter Series 2018, was for 12-30 knots WSW, with low water in the Solent at 12.30 pm. "Quite interesting conditions!" as PRO Kathy Smalley put it. Or, as one competitor was heard to mumble, "A witch from the West!"

There were two options to find a decent opening beat, move the Bramble Bank or head south of the bank to Goodall Roofing (4W) which is where the HRSC PRO took up station. The windward destination would be Prince Consort, followed by a "sheltered" broad reach to Norris to keep the first boats round the windward mark away from those still approaching it. A sort of health and safety spreader leg if you like.

There was a return to the “War of the Roses” in IRC 1 Class, when Chaz Ivill (Red) and Rob Bottomley (White), turned out for the final race showdown. It was the J/112E DAVANTI TYRES (Chaz Ivill and Paul Heys) who were cooking their hotpot with gas; taking their fourth win of the series and the overall title for IRC 1 Class. The J/112E DAVANTI TYRES closed with four 1sts and four 2nds to win by a convincing margin over the best 36 to 41 footer IRC teams in all of the Solent and southern Great Britain. Not surprisingly, this built upon the J/112E’s extraordinary 2018 season of sailing; winning the IRC Europeans overall and in class on the Solent and also winning the Offshore World Sailing Championship (IRC/ ORC) sailed off The Hague, The Netherlands.

The on-going battle between the J/109's continued between JIRAFFE (Simon Perry) and JAGO (Mike and Susie Yates). Perry commented that Yates was “quite good at match racing today!" This was probably because JAGO (second on the water) beat JIRAFFE (third on the water) and, unless JIRAFFE did something really quite silly, they had the series sewn up. Notably, JAGO had 14-year-old Cameron Yates on the mainsheet on Sunday, as he has been all series! A new record? His Dad Mike fell on the wheel during the race and bent it, but don't worry his wife Susie is getting him a new one for Christmas!  Rounding out the top five in class were two J88s; Gavin Howe’s TIGRIS in fourth and Kirsty & David Apthorp’s J-DREAM in fifth place.
  
In Class 3, the Greenhalgh family effort (Dad- David and daughter Libby) on their J/92 J’RONIMO leapfrogged into third position after the double toss races came into effect.  Thereafter, they won the final race in dramatic fashion and sealed their bid to take the bronze position on the podium!

Meanwhile, the J/88s saw a duel to the finish for class honors. Winning by one point was Gavin Howe’s TIGRIS over David & Kirsty Apthorp’s J-DREAM. Taking the bronze was Dirk van Beek’s SABRIEL JR.

A number of competitors were impressed by two club stalwarts, Rupert Smalley and Peter Baines, who manned the pin end boat, Obsession, as it bounced up and down during the windy start sequence. Rupert had a slightly different point of view, “it was nice and flat until all those race boats started to thrash around." He also felt it would be better if crews did not "ping" the port pin mark until it had actually been laid!!

Back in the HRSC Clubhouse, Paul Heys of Key Yachting presented the day prizes. He managed to avoid one awkward moment by quickly passing the Champagne and chocolates for the IRC 1 class winner to Chaz Ivill.

The Series prizes were presented by Lee Pollock of Hamble Yacht Services. Simon Perry’ J/109 JIRAFFE won “Yacht of the Series”. He thanked the Race Team and volunteers. "It was a fantastic series,” said Perry. “We will definitely be back again next year." Thanks for contribution from Trevor Pountain.   Sailing photo credits- Paul Wyeth   For more Hamble Winter Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

J/105 Flies at Course de’Alliance Regatta

J/105 sailing St Maarten regatta (Saint Maarten)- The Course de’Alliance Regatta is a port-to-port event that is raced between three magnificent islands in the Caribbean- St Maarten, St. Barth, and Anguilla- over a three day weekend.  For those that love sailing in the spectacular aquamarine waters of the Caribbean and enjoying the 15-25 kt trade winds, you cannot get much better than racing to those three amazing islands!

In the Racing Class, there was an epic battle between the J/105 SOLSTICE (skippered by Jordan and Shannon Mindich) and the M24s. In the end, SOLSTICE was 1st on the leg from St Maarten to St Barths, 4th place on the downwind leg from St Barths down to Anguilla, then 2nd on the beat/reach home to St Maarten. In the end, SOLSTICE took 2nd overall.

According to Jordan Mindich, “the conditions were spectacular, including a two hour tight spin reach up the north side of Saint Maarten. It was interesting racing, including a last minute capsize by Gill less than 100 yards from the finish - giving us 2nd overall! Loads of fun!!”

“This really is my favorite regatta. It is the season opener, and a great chance for the crews from the different islands to meet and socialize in beautiful locations. But, though the atmosphere is friendly, the competition is fierce, and it was great to see such tight racing amongst such good teams,” says Race Officer Paul Miller.

“The racing was hot, and still the participants had energy left to enjoy the socials in St Barth and Anguilla. That’s why this event is so popular, the concept of racing to 2 other islands and then enjoy the finest of the Caribbean is golden. We thank the St Barth Yacht Club & Sailing School and the Anguilla Sailing Association for their assistance with the event, the cooperation is vital for the Regatta’s continuation and success,” commented Leonde Vermeulen, Event Manager at the Sint Maarten Yacht Club, organizer of the event.

Organizers like to thank sponsors Moorings, Fiji Water and Mount Gay Rum for their contributions to the event. “Not only do our sponsors help to reduce costs, they add significant quality to the event. They are not only appreciated by the organizers, but by the participants as well. We are grateful for the ongoing support,” explained Vermeulen.  For more Course de’Alliance Regatta sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Pierini Tops Bacardi J/70 Winter Series I

J/70s sailing in Miami/ Biscayne Bay (Miami, FL)- Biscayne Bay was open again for business as the inaugural three event Bacardi Invitational Winter Series kicked off December 1­-2 in Miami, FL. The event is an off-shoot of the perennial Bacardi Invitational Regatta now run in conjunction with the legendary Bacardi Cup every March.

Despite light winds allowing only three races on day one and no racing on day two, the J/70 Class was extremely tight in the top five positions, with a different crew winning each race. Day one was as predicted. As it progressed, the breeze lightened, so did the chop. The left side continued to be favored, making starts difficult since everyone wanted to go the same way.

Many teams from across the USA and Europe arrived early for the regatta and took advantage of the Miami weather to get in some practice. On day one, sailors awoke to an overcast sky, a westerly breeze of 8–11 knots, and moderate Biscayne Bay chop. The Key Biscayne Yacht Club Race Committee set up a windward--leeward course of two laps.

In race one, the entire J/70 class went left on the upwind, so a strong start was essential to being in the top of the fleet. Henry Brauer's RASCAL and Joel Ronning's CATAPULT led neck and neck at the first mark. The two boats battled closely throughout the race with CATAPULT victorious in the end. Trey Sheehan's Team HOOLIGAN sailed a near perfect second race, winning with a generous lead for such light conditions.

For most of the day, boats that got out in front, stayed in front. The day ended with Geoff Pierini winning the third race. His team kept their pace in the dying breeze and seemed to glide effortlessly around the race course. Pierini and his team were hyper-focused on maximizing their speed and making the smallest of gains on every little puff.

Pierini's J/70 team had three great starts that gave them the freedom to continue left as long as they wished and not be held out to the layline.

The breeze was relatively stable and pressure moved slowly down the course, so it was difficult to make major gains on the upwinds. Gains were sometimes made on the downwinds by teams taking a risk to jibe away from the fleet early. The majority of the J/70 fleet straight set on the downwinds and gybed only when they arrived near the layline.

The J/70 winner, Geoff Pierini, attributes much of his win to his crew, US Olympian Thomas Barrows, keeping them in the pressure on the downwinds. That helped them work the boat lower than their competitors, giving them the chance to gybe out when the opportunity presented itself. Timing was everything in the tight fleet.

Sunday's weather forecast proved over-­optimistic. Despite the patience of the Race Committee and the competitors, the day's racing was called just after noon. The breeze never filled.

The J/70 sailors headed back to shore by motor. Smiles abounded later in the afternoon as the sailors found themselves again with Bacardi cocktails in their hands and surrounded by the hospitality of the folks at Shake—A-­Leg, the regatta venue.

After the three races, the top of the leaderboard was quite tight.  Pierini led with 6 pts, followed by Ronning’s CATAPULT in second with 8 pts, Sheehan’s Team HOOLIGAN- FLAT STANLEY in third with 9 pts, Brauer’s RASCAL in fourth with 11 pts and Bruno Pasquinelli’s STAMPEDE in fifth with 13 pts. The Top Corinthian J/70 Team was Joey Kolisch. Thanks to Kathleen Tocke for the contribution.

The series consists of three events, the next two are scheduled as follows:
Jan 19-20- Bacardi J/70 Winter Series II- Miami, FL
Mar 6-9- Bacardi J/70 Winter Series III- Miami, FL
For more Bacardi Winter Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Order Your Gorgeous 2019 J/Calendar Now!

2019 J/Calendar- Order Now!
(Newport, RI)- A sailing calendar is a great gift for loved ones, family, friends and crew.

For 2019, we have created another beautiful calendar for J/Sailors who love the joys of sailing a J in some of the most spectacular harbors and waters of the world.  Whether you are a cruising, racing or armchair sailor, these stunning sailboat photographs will transport you to wonderful sailing experiences in far away places.

The 2019 sailing calendar features the most popular as well as latest creations from the J/Design team sailing in many of the worlds most popular sailing areas- St Petersburg (Russia), British Virgin Island, St Barths, Chicago, France, Italy, Chile, Ireland, Germany, and Spain.  See the gorgeous photo gallery and order your 2019 J/Calendar here Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Monday, December 10, 2018

J/99 World Debut @ Paris Show

J/99 debuts at Paris Boat Show
(Paris, France)- The much anticipated introduction of the extraordinary J/99 shorthanded offshore speedster will be taking place at the famous “Salon Nautique”- a.k.a. the Paris International Boat Show- this coming week from December 8th to 16th at the Port de Versailles on the south side of Paris. The J/99 will be on display in Hall 1/ Stand 1 G62.  For more Salon Nautique Paris boat show information
Learn more about the J/99 Offshore Speedster here Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Wirth Munroe Memorial Race Preview

Wirth Munro Race course (Palm Beach, FL)- The Wirth M. Munroe Memorial Yacht Race (a.k.a. the “Race to the Buffet”) is held on the first Friday in December. First sailed in 1957, the race begins the winter ocean racing circuit in South Florida. The course presents challenging conditions, as yachts must consider the vagaries of the Gulf Stream and the passing of the season’s first frontal systems.

In 1957, members of the Florida Station of the Cruising Club of America, led by Dick Bertram (famous as founder of Bertram Yachts), decided to sponsor a race from Miami to Palm Beach and to hold it in early December as racing yachts from the north had arrived by then in preparation for the Southern Ocean Racing Conference held in January and February.

In the 1960’s the Sailfish Club of Florida became a co-sponsor of the race and now hosts the well-known awards party following the finish- e.g. the “race to the buffet”- upon finishing the race, there is dockside cocktails and live music. Racers finish the evening with a world-class awards banquet at the Sailfish Club of Florida.

In 2016, the Club partnered with the Storm Trysail Club and decided to extend the course back to the Miami, FL. This year’s race will see the addition of a second course, from Fort Lauderdale to Palm Beach, catering to racer-cruisers, cruisers, and smaller racing yachts. The new course, called “The Sprint”, will be 40.0nm, and will complement the existing 60.0nm Miami to Palm Beach track, known as “The Classic”.

There are several J/Crews that have taken up the challenge for this year’s event, about 4x the number that had participated in the previous years. In the ORC Class are the J/109 HARM’s WAY (Andy Wescoat from Houston, TX), the J/92 HILLBILLY (Brad Stowers from Melbourne, FL), and the well-traveled J/44 KENAI (Chris Lewis from Seabrook, TX).  Then, in the PHRF Class will be the J/88 LOOSE CANNON (John Kearns from Jupiter, FL).

The forecast for ESE winds in the 10-20 kts range promises a fast race for all boats and both courses; a fast reach off into the Gulf Stream flowing north at 3-5 kts, then giant A2 spinnakers to fly north up the Stream to the Palm Beach finish line.  For more Wirth Munroe Race sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Big Battle @ Chilean J/24 Nationals

J/24 sailing off Valparaiso (Bio Bio), Chile (Bio Bio, Chile)- The Chilean J/24 National Championship was sailed on the waters of the Bay of Concepción, based on Quiriquina Island. A beautiful location to host such an important regatta for the dozen J/24 teams that participated from across the world’s “longest” country (north and south).

A select group of famous South American J/24 sailors were invited to participate as crew aboard various boats. Chief amongst them was the famous Brazilian Mauricio Santa Cruz, multiple World and South American Champion. In addition, the Argentine Matias Pereira, multiple South American champion, Pan-American champion and multiple Argentine champion was crew.  And, finally Nicolas Cubria, former Argentine champion also sailed as crew. Each one of them sailed as crew with a top Chilean helmsman.

Positioning themselves comfortably in first place on the first day of racing was the Chilean Del Castillo and his crew (totally local); they won 3 of the 4 races!

In the first two days, the winds were mild. But, as the racing progressed and the wind increased, it was a classic trade-off in the J/24 class- top end genoa or go for the jib. A true test of offshore sailors, ironically enough!!

At the end of the last race, the teams of E. Fernandez and N. Cubría with the crew of Carlos del Solar and Mauricio Santa Cruz were tied in points.

As in the last regatta, Del Castillo won; he qualified as Chilean 2018 J/24 Champion. Second was Carlos del Solar with Mauricio Santa Cruz. Third was Patricio Rodriguez's team with Matias Pereira.  And, fourth was Raúl del Castillo.  For more Chilean J/24 class sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Saturday, December 8, 2018

J/88 MAI TAI Swedish Delivery- 865nm!

(Gothenburg, Sweden)- In a bit of a “Throwback Thursday”, the J/88 MAI TAI (now J88.SE) was bought by two Swedes in the Hamble, England in August 2017.  The two excited owners, Jonas Dyberg and Roger Ohlsson, decided they would do a doublehanded delivery back to Goteborg; it was an 865nm delivery in eleven days!

J/88.SE sailing delivery Hamble to GothenburgIt was an epic adventure. Their delivery track took them from Hamble, across the English Channel to the Netherlands, then up the coast to the opening of the Elbe River in Brunsbuttel, Germany.  Then, they motored up the Nord See Kanal to Kiel, Germany, and then a straight shot north up the Baltic Sea to Gothenburg, Sweden! It was an epic journey and here are the videos to prove it! Top speed was 18.6 kts on their delivery cruise!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y_PSCQnqDVo

J/88.SE speed adventures off SwedenThen, if that wasn’t an adventure enough, Jonas and Roger took their friend Peter Gustafsson from BLUR.SE fame on board to see if they could establish a “speed run” on the windy wavy Baltic Sea in October 9th, 2017!  It was a gorgeous sunny day, with a northerly breeze of 20-30 kts off Vinga, Sweden.  Here is how they went.

https://youtu.be/9nHglNNWM4Y

Davis Island J/70 Winter Series Preview

J/70s sailing on Tampa Bay
(Tampa, FL)- Like its counterpart in Monte Carlo, Monaco, the Davis Island YC has been running its winter series since the inception of the International J/70 class.  It has been a popular series from the beginning for J/70 sailors across America; this year at least 50 entries will be participating in one of the three events.

One of the most popular elements of the regatta is that all sailors are treated to an on-going “seminar/ training” program every day, held Friday afternoon before the regatta starts.  As an “upside down” club, the coolest part of DIYC is the fleet congregates upstairs around a massive central bar that is surrounded by an enormous covered porch.  With giant 60” plus TV screens everywhere in the ceilings, it is a multimedia extravaganza that is all turned over to sailing when needed (of course, football takes precedence at certain times of the day!). Many famous sailmakers from DOYLE, NORTH, QUANTUM and ULMAN Sails have contributed to the post-race de-briefs that include white board sessions as well as video/ photo analysis.

Not surprisingly, many J/70 crews look forward to participating in the DIYC J/70 Winter Series because it is a great training program for the skippers and crews. There are many top J/70 teams from across the country that are participating again this year. Some of those teams include; Doug Strebel’s BLACK RIVER RACING from Texas, Andrew Fisher’s BUTTON FLY from New York, Rob Britts’ HOT MESS from Tampa, Kevin Downey’s MR PITIFUL from Seattle, Will Welles’ NEW WAVE from Florida, Doug Clark’s POLAR for US Coast Guard, Bill Draheim from Texas, and Kevin Morgan’s WILD CARD from Rochester. Notably, there is a well-attended fleet of thirteen Corinthians teams.

The one major variable for the weekend’s racing will be Winter Storm Grace that is battering the USA’s West Coast on Thursday and is due to swing south across the Texas Panhandle region and across the top of the Gulf of Mexico Saturday evening and Sunday midday. Forecasts for Friday and Saturday show great breezes from the ESE feeding that frontal system; but Sunday may see anywhere from 15 to 35 knot winds from 6am to 1pm. Sailing on Sunday T.B.D.  For more Davis Island YC J/70 Winter Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

J/Love @ Väter­chen Frost Regatta

J/70s on Lake Alster, Germany (Hamburg, Germany)- It may not rank as the world’s most notable “local” regatta, if there can be such a thing. However, it certainly ranks amongst the most competitive, picturesque regattas held on a lake in the middle of a major city in Europe. That is what the Hamburger Segel-Club was hosting this past weekend for a fleet of fifteen J/70s, nineteen J/24s, and eight J/22s that LOVE sailing on the gorgeous Alster Lake in front of the Hamburg city waterfront.

J/70 winners- Hamburg, GermanyKlaus Brinkbäumer, winner of the J/70 class had this to say about their experience:

"Father Frost Regatta is becoming Father Late Summer! LOL. It was warm, and the moderate winds over the Alster Lake were spectacular. The wind was good, from the east, gusty and with many shifts, but that's how we know and like our lake.

J/24s on Lake Alster, GermanyWe (tactician Carsten Kemmling, trimmer David Heitzig, bowman Florian Thoelen- all from Norddeutscher Regatta Verein) got off to a great start with our team on GER 958 BROOKLYN. It was a scramble at the start boat in the first race. We were over early, so had to restart. But, the races were long. Four laps. So, we were able to work our way up to third place. Then, we managed to get a 2nd and 1st, a perfect first day for us!

On Sunday, we made it exciting for us! We were a little early on the layline on the first windward mark. I misjudged it, and wrapped our keel on the anchor line! That was our discard race! Thankfully, we won the last race!”

J/22s sailing on Lake Alster, GermanyTaking second behind them was Ulf Plessmann’s crew of Katrin Jahncke, Ohle Vollmer, and Anreas Benkert on GER 966 with a tally of 1-6-4-1-4 for 10 pts net.  Third was the top woman skipper, Johanna Meier’s crew of Heinrich Hader, Matthias Rummel, and Milena Muller with a 7-1-7-2-5 record for 15 pts net.

In the J/24 class, it was a “Tale of Two Cities”. The leaders and the almost leaders.  In a battle of “not torpedoing ourselves” were Fabian Damm’s GER 5316 and Frank Schoenfeldt’s GER 5412.  Both teams were experiencing an amazing roller-coaster ride all the way to the final finish.  Winning that battle was Damm’s crew on GER 5316 (Jannik Duehren, Moritz Boeoek, Jonas Lyssewski, Jan Eike Sihdiz) with a 1-6-1-8-1 for 9 pts net.  Wishing for a better outcome in their last race was Schoenfeldt’s crew on GER 5412.  In the end, their tally was the most consistent on the leaderboard, with a 5-1-2-3-4 for 10 pts net.  Taking the bronze was Stefan Karsunke’s team of Lina Nagel, Lars Hager, Lars Gibbe, and David Thompson.   Sailing photo credits- Johann Nikolaus Andreae  For more Väter­chen Frost Regatta sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Fall Italian J/24 Class Report

J/24s sailing on Lake Como, Italy (Lecco, Italy)- The Italian J/24 Class continues to see good participation in many of its fall/ winter series championships across the country.  In particular, some of the fleet locations, like Lecco, Marina di Carrara, and Taranto, have been blessed with nice sailing conditions, from the Lakes District north down to the warm, sunny Mediterranean.  Here is one of those reports from Lecco.

Lecco (Lake Como)
ITA 499 Kong Griffin II, skippered by Marco Stefanoni, ended up winning the famous Interlaghi- Trofeo Canottieri Lecco- with a score of 1-3-1-2.  The regatta is a classic for the end of the season in the lakes district north of Milano, the first edition of the regatta started back in 1980 for the J/24 class.

Taking second place was ITA 476 DEJA VU, skippered by Ruggero Spreafico, posting a 4-4-2-1.  And, rounding out the podium was ITA 498 NOTIFYME-PILGRIM sailed by the fleet champion Lario Mauro Benfatto.

Five races were held over the weekend. On the first day, rain and bad weather did not stop the crews from racing.  Faced with a strong wind from the South that, at times, reached 16 to 20 knots, the fleet completed four races in about six hours on the water. At the end of a full and tiring day, the delicious aperitif in Canottieri, prepared by chef Alberto Galbani, was welcomed and inhaled in minutes by the hungry crews!

On Sunday, it was a completely different story.  The first race was held in very strong gusty winds from the North that were already hitting 20-plus knots, with big rain showers rolling across the race course.  However, as the winds built in squalls up to 25-plus knots, the Race Committee was forced to cancel the second race for safety reasons.

In addition to the winner of the regatta, a very special award was handed out- the Gino Cicardi Trophy (reserved for the oldest sailor). This year, it was awarded to Sergio Agostoni (born in 1938), helmsman and owner of the J/24 ITA 469 Bruschetta Guastafeste, fourth in the overall classification J24.  For more Italian J/24 Class sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Stanford Dominates The BIG Sail Regatta!

J/22 Big Sail- Stanford versus UC Berkeley (San Francisco, CA)- In anticipation of the college football rivalry game on November 17 between the Stanford University Cardinals and the University of California- Berkeley Bears, the 15th annual The BIG Sail was held between the schools on San Francisco Bay. With five divisions competing on a slalom course in J/22s, Stanford took the title by winning four of the five matches. Hosting the event in their matched fleet of J/22s was the St Francis YC.

In the Varsity Division (e.g. “pro’s”), it was a nip and tuck battle.  Each school taking a win in the first two races. However, in the “rubber match” in race 3, it was Stanford all the way home to the finish line to take the victory in this prestigious division.

In the Women’s Alumni Division, it was not the “cat fight” that everyone imagined it might be between two very well-sailed all-women’s teams.  It was all Stanford, taking the division with a 2-0 record.

The Young Alumni Division was no different than the Women’s group. Stanford ran the table on U-Cal again with a 2-0 record.

It was a different story in the Master Alumni Division. This was the only “shining path” to victory seen by the rocket scientists at U-Cal Berkeley, taking their Stanford luddites to task with a 2-0 pasting.

In the end, it was all up to the Grandmasters Alumni Division to determine if U-Cal could save face, the northerners versus the southerners on San Francisco Bay.  It might as well be called “the Civil War”!  As some of these old guys may be old enough to remember what Grandpa told them about those crazy colonialists in the East.  Nevertheless, it was the Stanford Cardinals senior AARP cardholders and collectors of Medicare/ Medicaid that took home all the marbles in this division. Perhaps something to be said for living and going to school in warm, farm country down in south Bay!  For more The BIG Sail regatta information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Dutch J/22 Winter Series I Report

J/22 Dutch regatta winter series (Brassermermeer, The Netherlands)- The J/22 class in Europe has exhibited an extraordinary perseverance to hang tough and enjoy the camaraderie that comes with sailing a fun boat that is easy to trailer around the continent.

By far, the most popular J/22 series is hosted by the Dutch J/22 class on the famous Brassermermeer Lake.  Ten boats from France, Germany, and the Netherlands are participating in the 2018/ 2019 Winter Series.

In the first regatta, it was FRA 1444 (Brockerhoof, Michaux, Declercq) that are leading the series on a tie-breaker over the Dutch team of NED 1295 (Liselotte Verdoorn, Jan Dirk, Anneloes Rosemarijn).  Remarkably, these two teams are dominating the top of the leaderboard with a combined six 1sts, six 2nds, and four 3rds.

Third is another Dutch crew on NED 1223, led by woman helm Suzanne van Iterson, with crew of Frans, Suzanne, and Anne. They won the first race, but followed it with a 4-3-2-2-3-5-4 in eight races scored so far.    For more Dutch J/22 Winter Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

J/24 U.K. 2018 National Rankings Update

J/24s sailing off Poole, England (Poole, United Kingdom)- The United Kingdom J/24 Class continues to enjoy good participation in its regional events this year and a total of twenty-three teams participated in the five U.K. events and twelve of those participated in the 2018 J/24 World Championship recently sailed on Lake Garda, Italy.

After eight events that include regattas in Fowey, Dartmouth, Poole & Saltash in the U.K., plus Kieler Woche and the J/24 Europeans in Germany, plus the Lake Garda Worlds, the leading team appears to be David Cooper’s JAWBREAKER from Royal Western YC with a Best of 4 total of 127 points (a high points total).  Sitting just five points back is Nick McDonald’s MOJOSI from Royal Western YC and then just arrears of them in third position is James Torr’s MAJIC from Saltash Sailing Club.

At this stage, the UK J/24 Rankings are important as they serve as the UK qualifiers for the 2019 J/24 World Championship being sailed in Miami, Florida and hosted by the Coral Reef YC. The UK can qualify six teams for that event.  So, in addition to JAWBREAKER, MOJOSI, and MAJIC, the next three teams are Duncan McCarthy’s MADELEINE from Parkstone YC, Iles Kysyk’s TEAM IMPACT (an Under 25 crew) from Parkstone YC, and Austen Davies’ JAM TOO from Royal Western YC.  For more J/24 U.K. Class sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

BRIBON MOVISTAR Wins J/80 Catalonia Championship

J/80 Spain- Catalonia Championship winners- Bribon Movistar (Barcelona, Spain)- The 2018 J/80 Catalonia Championship was hosted by Real Club Nautico Barcelona over the past weekend for a fleet of twenty-one teams from across the region. A total of five races were held over the two days in relatively light winds, very unsteady in direction, and with quite a swell rolling across the race track. As a result, it meant a tough test for skippers, tacticians and crew that had to work hard in each of the races to stay in contention for the regatta.

Winning the regatta was past J/80 World Champion Marc de Antonia; his BRIBON MOVISTAR team posted a 1-6-1-3-3 for 8 pts net.  After a brilliant last day of racing with two bullets nearly allowed Jose Maria Pujol’s DECKMETAL to pull off a surprise win.  However, it was his first three races that prevented the dream from occurring, recording a 7-2-6-1-1 for 10 pts net.  Finally, it was Rosa Artigas’ MIKAKU that took the bronze on the podium with a fairly steady tally of 2-5-3-5-2 for 12 pts net.  For more J/80 Barcelona Winter Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Hamble Winter Series- Week 6 Report

J/88 sailing Hamble Winter Series- England (Hamble, England)- Week six of the HYS Hamble Winter Series dawned with blue skies, beautiful sunshine, and a forecast for some breeze, though nowhere near as much as the two previous weeks. What could possibly go wrong? Well, as it turned out, the Committee Boat, Jabberwock, refused to start and an urgent message was sent ashore. With Andy and the River Taxi alongside, the combined brainpower ascertained that it was not a loose wire, or a faulty starter battery, but that the house battery bank was to blame. With that turned off, the little 75amp hour starter battery kicked the engine into life and all was well.

J/109s sailing Hamble Series- EnglandWith the battery bank now slowly charging, the Committee Boat headed for East Knoll and the Race Team WhatsApp'd the fleet with their intentions. The forecast was for the wind to go to the East but it was 060 when they arrived on station and it never went past 070. With that direction and the forecast in mind, PRO Kathy Smalley decided on courses containing triangles, sausages and beats. The number of triangles and sausages depended on the size of the boats. Class 1 and 2 would in fact go to Royal Thames twice whereas Class 3 & 4 would not. All classes finished with a spinnaker reach to the hamblewinterseries.com buoy.

There was significant, though neap, tide crossing the start line and this made the decision on where to go interesting. Most teams in Class 1 decided to hog the boat end, which led to a number of performance enhancing expletives being heard. With a large NKY Lines container ship in the Thorn Channel, the PRO was relieved to see that the fleet knew that they had no rights whatsoever, and that they all behaved impeccably.

J/112E Davanti Tyres- Cowes,EnglandThe J/112E DAVANTI TYRES, sailed by Chaz Ivill and Paul Heyes, once again won on handicap in IRC 1 Class. As a result, after tossing out their first two “practice” races of a 3-6, they are the only team in the fifteen-boat IRC 1 Class to have posted a podium finishes; in fact, three 1sts and four 2nds.  They are leading the class by just two points, so they will have to be vigilant in their final weekends.

In IRC 2 Class, it continues to be a battle of the J/Teams.  The J/109 JAGO (Mike & Susie Yates_ was keen to keep tabs on the J/109 JIRAFFE (Simon Perry) as they are the two leaders of the series.  JAGO was OCS, despite what Mike Yates said later in the bar, they spent the race "clawing their way back into second place,” as Susie put it. JAGO went left up the second beat and put herself back in contention.

J/88s sailing Hamble Series- EnglandMeanwhile, the J/88s have been dueling it out for the balance of the podium in IRC 2 Class, as well as fighting for the lead in the J/88 One-Design class honors.  At this stage, it’s a “dead heat”, a horse race of epic proportions developing between Gavin Howe’s TIGRIS and David & Kirsty Apthorp’s J-DREAM. To add to that anxiety, both boats have had their “send it down the mine shaft” type scores; TIGRIS with a 7-12 and J-DREAM with a 7-11 as their current discards.  At the moment, TIGRIS leads by one point over J-DREAM in the IRC 2 scoring.  Those two are also leading the J/88 One-design scoring, followed by Dirk van Beek’s SABRIEL JR in third.
  
In Class 3, no one was surprised to see the Greenhalgh family effort (Dad- David and daughter Libby) on their J/92 J’RONIMO leapfrog into third position on the podium once the two discards took effect after eleven races.  Thanks for contribution from Trevor Pountain.   Sailing photo credits- Paul Wyeth   For more Hamble Winter Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.