Sunday, July 31, 2016

J/133 JUMP Coming to America!

J/133 JUMP owner- Chris Lund in England(Portsmouth NH)-  So says Chris Lund of Portsmouth, NH.  “I had the pleasure of traveling to Hamble in Southampton UK this past weekend to pickup J/133 Hull #9 for her journey back to the US. J/133 "Jump" owned by Ian Dewhirst was listed by Key Yachting LTD.

The boat was loaded on the M/V Spaarnegacht of Seven Star Yacht Transport for delivery to Baltimore by way of Bermuda. The ship was also loaded with gear and containers in support of the Americas Cup event.

We plan to campaign the boat in New England next year for a combination of buoy and distance racing and aspire to race JUMP at the upcoming Marblehead Halifax and the 2018 Newport Bermuda races.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Knickerbocker Sailing Assocation- Sails J/35 Runaway!

J/35 sailing New York(Hudson River, NY)- One effort to diversify sailing in New York City involves a non-profit called Hudson River Community Sailing, which teaches underprivileged children how to sail, focusing on the mathematics and physics of the sport. Knickerbocker Sailing Association’s annual “Pride Weekend Regatta,” in which members race J/24s up the Hudson, is a fundraiser for Hudson River Community Sailing. Last year, 50 Knickerbocker members competed on 10 boats, their most to date.

“We find ourselves in midtown Manhattan in a Fiat with James Weichert. We make a pit stop in Queens to pick up his friend Martin and his dog Luca, who only understands Spanish, and then we’re bound for City Island, in the Bronx, where Weichert anchors his 35-foot-long J/35 racing boat named RUNAWAY.

RUNAWAY sleeps six, though to say comfortably would be a stretch. But, Weichert says, “You need a crew of six to race it.”

According to Weichert, competitive sailing is experiencing a surge in popularity, thanks mostly to advances in broadcast technology.

“Sailing is less known than some of the other sports because up until very recently it was impossible to get good footage of sailing, because it happens out on the water,” says Weichert. “But now, with drones and the Internet, that’s really changing,”

It’s a rainy Thanksgiving night in Brooklyn, and a friend has invited me into the home of strangers for supper. Laid out on the kitchen table is a spread of bacon-wrapped squash, honey-baked ham, turkey, green beans, brussels sprouts, and all the fixings. In the living room a dozen men are seated in a circle on sofas and folding chairs, plates neatly placed squarely on their laps. Curiosity strikes their faces when one of them rises to his feet.

“I think he’s choking,” says one guest, a doctor, who looks across the room at his boyfriend, also a doctor, who returns the look with a shrug.

The choking victim is our host, and he’s stumbled into the middle of the circle with his face switching patriotically from red to blue to white.

“Are you choking?” asks another guest. The men look around the room at each other. “Is he choking?”

“Yeah, he’s definitely choking,” says another guest.

All the men here have two things in common: their homosexuality and their deep love for sailing. They’ve crossed land and sea, traveling from their houseboats — anchored in New Jersey or Long Island — or their Manhattan apartments, to be together for the holiday.

One person is missing. A great cannonball of a man, who was carving the bird in the kitchen with one hand and holding his lap dog with the other, has picked up on the bother in the adjoining room. He crooks his neck around the corner, tosses the dog and the carving knife, and barrels through the hallway.

“Step aside! I’m a flight attendant!” he shouts. “I save lives!”

He thrusts the host’s head toward the ground, and, with a great, flat-palmed whack between the shoulder blades, a brussels sprout launches from the host’s mouth onto the floor, where our hero’s lap dog scuttles over and devours it.

“Happy Thanksgiving, Dingy,” says the host to the dog through gasps and coughs, the dog still licking up the gooey spot on the carpet.

Uncomfortable laughter and a golf clap cut the tension. The host will live, and he takes his seat.

“Why didn’t you use the Heimlich?” asks one guest.

“No one uses the Heimlich anymore,” says the flight attendant. “It’s outdated.” The doctors nod.

This is my unofficial introduction to a handful of the roughly 150 members of the Knickerbocker Sailing Association, a gay sailing club serving the New York metropolitan area. Gay sailing clubs proliferate around the globe, and there are two other clubs, Boston’s Yankee Cruising Club and the Open Seas Yacht Club in Annapolis, Md., on the Eastern seaboard. What makes Knickerbocker different, members say, is the club’s openness and egalitarian approach to membership. The club consists mostly of crew, rather than being mostly or exclusively made up of boat owners. It welcomes different types of sailors, too: those who go out for leisure and those who race. Its members also span ages, economic backgrounds, sexual identities, and race — sort of."  Read more about the Knickerbocker Sailing Associations experiences in sailing here.

Marblehead NOOD Preview

J/70s sailing off Marblehead NOOD (Marblehead, MA)- The final event of the highly popular HELLY HANSEN NOOD Regattas will be taking place this weekend in Marblehead from July 28th to 31st at Boston Yacht Club.  It has become an enormous one-design event and featured in the regatta is the largest keelboat fleet- the J/70s with twenty-seven boats!  Not to be outdone is the largest “big boat” fleet, the sixteen boat J/105 class and, of course, the classic J of them all, the dozen boat J/24 class.  All boats will be competing for the honor of being selected as the Overall Winner to join past HELLY HANSEN NOOD Regatta winners in the British Virgin Islands for the NOOD National Champion sailing cruising boats with refrigerators, yakuzzi’s, blenders and swim ladders.

The twenty-seven boat J/70 class is a world-championship level fleet, featuring top teams like Jud Smith’s AFRICA, John Brim’s RIMETTE, Brian Keane’s SAVASANA, Will Welles’ SCAMP, and Dave Franzel’s SPRING.  In addition, top regional crews that will be pushing the envelope include Holly Fabyan’s ASTERIA, Andrew & Melissa Fisher’s BUTTON FLY, Frank McNamara’s CHINOOK and Tim Finkle’s JUNIOR crew from Youngstown YC from New York.

The local J/105 fleet always sports a great turnout.  For this 2016 edition, sixteen boats are participating with past Marblehead NOOD Champion, Fred deNapoli’s ALLEGRO SEMPLICITA, leading the charge.  They will be chased hard by perennial J/105 adventurers- Mark & Jolene Masur’s TWO FEATHERS from Fort Worth Boat Club in Fort Worth, TX.  Also, in the frame for most of the event should be Steve Hollis’ SIROCCO and Ken Bowden’s KNOTLESS.

With a dozen boats, the J/24s always will have good fun sailing with top-notch competition.  Past Marblehead NOOD Champions include- John Denman’s AIRDOODLE, Carter White’s SEA BAGS SAILING TEAM, and Erica Beck Spencer’s SEA BAGS WOMEN’S SAILING TEAM!!  Wow, that’s some tres amigos/amigas to have to contend with!!  Hoping to do battle with that trio are Chris Keimig’s LITTLE MARTHA from Sail Newport in Newport, RI and Alex Bolan’s SAMURAI TAKEDOWN.  For more HELLY HANSEN Marblehead NOOD Regatta sailing information

J/22 Warrior Sailing Program- need trailer!

J/22 for Warrior sailing (Newport, RI)- According to Ben Poucher, “Warrior Sailing has been plugging away with 55 new sailors from our basic level camps and 2 advanced level camps completed this summer.  We have also had some great success this year competing in the J/22 and Sonar divisions throughout the country with our competitive team.

We were hosted last weekend by St. Francis Yacht Club in San Francisco for some big breeze training in their J/22s to prepare for the J/22 Worlds this August in Kingston, Ontario.  We are going to train out of College of Charleston August 2-5 in J/22s as our final preparation for the big week from August 19-25th in Canada.

However, we need a J/22 Trailer.  We were donated a J/22 for our own use, but it didn't come with a trailer.  We are looking to have one donated or one for purchase prior to the J/22 worlds in August.  We would need the trailer to be in or around Charleston on the 15th of August!?! Is there any J/22 sailor out there who could help us??

In the meantime, we are looking to expand the program to not only compete in the J/22 open competitions, but also looking to get into some slightly bigger boats for our team.  We have expanded our team and would like to get into a donated J/80, J/105, J/109, or J/111.  I am seeking out potential donations to Warrior Sailing and strategically place these boats in location throughout the US for our team to attend and compete in various classes.  We would also be developing and building adaptive equipment for these boats as we progress.”  If any J/Sailors can help, please contact Ben Poucher - ph 269-598-7119

Friday, July 29, 2016

J/Fun @ Screwpile Lighthouse Challenge

(Solomons Island, MD)- The “regatta run by sailors for sailors” enjoyed wonderful conditions all weekend for the 2016 Screwpile Lighthouse Challenge- a rac­er’s favorite for years on the Chesapeake Bay.  The event is held every July in the mid­dle of the sum­mer near Solomons Island, Maryland.

After all the fan-fare, awards, and parties, it was clear the J/teams in attendance were happy to have participated in the three day event hosted by the Hol­i­day Inn Solomons Island.

Winning the J/70 one-design class Peter Firey’s PHOENIX, taking three 1sts in four races on their way to a triumphant victory, their first in years!  Second was Larry Ray’s JRAY and third was Holly Graf’s SPICE.

Nearly pulling off a win in the PHRF A1 class was Marty Roesch’s J/111 VELOCITY; but a last race 4th place torpedoed those chances for glory, having to settle for second place.  Jim Whited’s J/111 BAD CAT finished in 6th place, Craig Wright’s J/109 AFTERTHOUGHT was 7th and Dave McCreight’s J/111 DARK HORSE rounded out the top ten in 9th position.

Sailing in PHRF B class were two J/80s- Mark & Robin Witte’s RAKALI from Leonardtown, MD finished 4th while Clarke McKinney’s FAMILY TRUCKSTER from Solomons Island, MD was 5th in class.  Sailing photo credit- Alan Clark/  For more Screwpile Lighthouse Challenge sailing information

Hayling Island SC Wins British J/70 Sailing League

J/70s sailing British Sailing League (Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- Hayling Island Sailing Club team won the inaugural UK National Sailing League Final in association with Bainbridge & Seldén.  Sailed over the weekend of 16-17 July, HISC beat ten other teams to be crowned champions and secure a place at the SAILING Champions League Final in Porto Cervo, Sardinia (23-25 September).

The HISC team of Imogen Stanley, Paul Childs, Chris O’Neill and Chris Witty dominated the first day, winning four of their six races held in J/70s, showing great consistency given the shifty conditions in Osborne Bay on the Solent. On Sunday, HISC followed up with another race win and a handful of top three scores to win the event with a race to spare. Winning helm Stanley said: “Our strategy was just to sail fast and keep out of the way of the other boats, we managed to get some really good starts and just sail away. I had a great team with me from Hayling – Chris, Chris and Paul – which meant I could put our boat exactly where I wanted without worrying about the boat handling.”

J/70s sailing the British Sailing League off CowesThe UK National Sailing League is a new initiative launched in March and run in partnership between the RYA and Royal Thames Yacht Club, with the format of 15 minute umpired races in keelboats.  HISC’s mainsheet trimmer Paul Childs enjoyed the format: “It makes the racing really close and really tactical.  Any mistake you make you instantly get punished whereas sometimes in a fleet race if you make a few mistakes you can wind it back in, but in this you’ve got great sailors from around the country really chomping at the bit. We do a lot of sprint racing down at Hayling which I think helped us this weekend, we sail in the tide and are used to making those quick decisions.”

The second and third placed-boats both qualified for a spot to race in St Petersburg at Act 1 of the SAILING Champions League in August. Sunderland YC Team finished second overall securing the first spot, just one point ahead of Port Edgar YC team in third.

Port Edgar won the final race of the day to sneak ahead of Cardiff University who finished their weekend in fourth, and their helm Callum Calder said: “It was great to up amongst it, we were in the chocolates all the time. At points we were lightening quick and at points we were dog slow but that’s the great thing about the short-course racing as you can get back into it so I’m really happy with that.”

Jack Fenwick, RYA Keelboat Development Manager: “The UK National Sailing League has been a great success. We ran four qualifying events and the final in Cowes was very competitive. All the feedback from host clubs and sailors has been positive and we are looking forward to developing the league next year.”

A full schedule of 22 races was completed over the two-day event with eleven teams from around the country competing.  Follow them on their UK J/70 Sailing League page here.  For more UK J/70 Sailing League information

Thursday, July 28, 2016

J/111 Crowned New England PHRF Champion!

(Portland, Maine)- This year’s New England PHRF Championship was hosted by Portland YC in Portland, Maine and was sponsored by Handy Boat Service & Hallet Sails.  Over the two-day weekend event, thirty boats participated in four divisions- Cruising and three PHRF Racing divisions.  Sitting on top of the world after winning PHRF 1 Class was Mike Williamson’s J/111 BRIGADOON, handily winning their class and the overall regatta.

In the PHRF 2 Division, it was a duel of J/105s, with Hank Seeselberg’s UBUNTU taking those honors by placing 2nd in class while Wolfgang Bauchinger, with his wife Lynn skippering INTANGIBLE, took third position.

The PHRF 3 Divisions was made up of mostly J/80s with a J/24 and J/30 giving them spirited racing.  Nevertheless, despite the preponderance of 80s on the course, it was Andrew Carey’s J/24 MR HANKEY that took class silver with Bill Hunt’s FIREBOLT happily taking the bronze medal.  Rounding out the top five was Tony Blanchard’s J/80 JUNE MOONE.  For more New England PHRF Championship sailing information

Club Vela Portocivitanova Wins Italian Sailing League Act II

Italian J/70 sailing league winners (Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy)- This past week, the YC Costa Smeralda in Porto Cervo, Sardinia, hosted the third leg of the AUDI Italian Sailing League.  The Italians sailing clubs all participated on YCCS’s matched fleet of one-design J/70s.

After three beautiful days of racing, the Club Vela Portocivitanova won the Audi Italian Sailing League, the second Act of the Lega Italiana Vela series in Porto Cervo.

J/70s sailing Italian League off Porto Cervo, ItalyDuring the last day of races the team of Club Vela Portocivitanova that consisted of Alessandro Battistelli, Alessio Marinelli, Gabriele Giardini and Sandro Iesari reconfirmed its high level of performance- thanks to perfect teamwork and tactics, the team closed the qualification series with seven 1sts, four 2nds, three 3rds for a 62 pt total!

Second place in the final ranking was the Marina Militare team. An excellent performance on the last day of racing (winning two of the four races sailed) saw the Yacht Club Adriaco team climb into third place, just one point back from second! A second to last place in the 24th race set back the Aeronautica Militare team, dropping them into fourth position.  Then, holding onto fifth place was Reale Yacht Club Canottieri Savoia Napoli.

Italian J/70 sailing league winners podiumThe President of the Lega Italiana Vela, Roberto Emanuele de Felice, underlines the great result achieved by the teams: “Once again we witnessed an important evolution in the Lega Vela regattas; the most coordinated, most close-knit team wins. Experience, coordination and passion are the main ingredients in order to make the difference in the Lega Italiana Vela and the “Club Vela Portocivitanova” gave a great lesson to everybody by performing at such a high level!”

The Commodore of YC Costa Smeralda, Riccardo Bonadeo declared, “During the three days of this event organized together with Lega Italiana Vela, we had very fast and highly technical races.  In particular, we are very proud of organizing sailing events that promote sailing at a club level by spreading out the culture of this sport together with its unique values: commitment, teamwork and sportsmanship. Beside the teams, I thank our sponsor AUDI- they have supported our sailing activities for years and they provided us a wonderful party!”  For more Lega Italiana Vela sailing information

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

J/105 LOULOU Leads Red Grant Regatta

J/105s sailing offshore (Perth Amboy, NJ)- On its 151st anniversary, the Raritan Yacht Club, located in Perth Amboy, NJ, hosted the 70th annual Red Grant Regatta in Raritan Bay approximately 10 miles South of the Verrazano Bridge.  The regatta continued its tradition as the largest keelboat regatta in the New York Harbor and New Jersey region.  Forty-six boats raced in various windward/leeward and point-to-point races, including a competitive ten-boat J/105 division.  Competitors benefitted from steady breezes in the 15-knot range and good weather.  There were 3 races on Saturday in warm cloudy weather with 10-15 knots out of the Southeast.

In the J/105 class, Paul Beaudin’s LOULOU took 2 bullets and a 6th to lead Paul Zajac’s SKAL by a point and Mark van Schalkwyk’s CIRCE by 2 points in close racing.

On the second day of the regatta, a front came through along with a fresh Northwest breeze.  SKAL pulled ahead in the first race with Ann & Gary Myer’s MAGIC taking a bullet and moving up to within 3 points of SKAL and tying LOULOU.  LOULOU showed its real potential by coming back to clearly win the last race to take the regatta.

In fact, the last race produced a very compressed fleet, very close racing with all finishing within a few boat lengths.  SKAL got lost in the mix by finishing 9th and MAGIC finished 6th.  In the final results, LOULOU won with 16 points.  MAGIC won the tie breaker over SKAL, both with 22 points.  CIRCE and Marcus Wunderlich’s STRATOS finished just behind with 22 and 25 points, respectively.

The regatta and charity auction proceeds benefited the US Coast Guard Foundation, and Goslings was the primary sponsor.  For more Red Grant Regatta sailing information

JELVIS Clinches J/111 European Championship!

J/111 sailing Europeans (Hamble, England)- With a stiff south westerly breeze and sparkling sunshine, the J/111 European Championship went right to the wire with the champion decided on the very last race.  The J/111’s enjoyed beautiful weather for their six race series hosted by the Royal Southern YC on the River Hamble in the United Kingdom.

Chris Jones' JOURNEYMAKER II scored two bullets to lead the class after the first day of racing, but three straight bullets from Martin Dent's JELVIS, on the second day, secured the European Championship for the Scottish skipper’s young team.  Third was Paul Griffith’s JAGERBOMB.

"This was yet another weekend of very close racing ... All the boats were sailing well, every mark rounding we were in company, and if you made a mistake you would let somebody through: yes it’s competitive, but there is a fantastic spirit in the fleet. there’s healthy rivalry and banter in equal proportion between the teams.  We are now looking forward to the Pre-Worlds, Worlds and then straight into Cowes Week- - 14 days of continuous J/111 sailing!! It just doesn’t get any better than that!"

During the same weekend, the Royal Southern YC was hosting their Joseph Perrier Champagne Summer Regatta.  The J/80 MOCKINGJAY scored a win and a second to lead the fleet on countback in the Sportsboat Class. “Two days of great sailing, rewarded with a magnum of Joseph Perrier, so I am not complaining,” smiled MockingJay's Chris Body.

In IRC 1, Mike Wallis' J/122 JAHMALI was always pushing hard and scored a podium place in every race to take second place.

In IRC Two, Simon Perry's J/109 JIRAFFE scored their first ever regatta win! Team JIRAFFE shouted with joy as they crossed the line.

In IRC Three, Andy Howe & Annie Kelly's dream season continued with yet another win with their J/97 BLACKJACK II. Last year the couple won the Barbados Tourism Marketing prize of flights and a holiday on the Caribbean island, and their performance this year certainly puts the team in the frame once more for the magnificent prize.

In the J/70 Class Alan Higgs' ESF ENERGY won by a single point from Jack Davies' YETI. Meanwhile, Patrick Liardet’s COSMIC took home the bronze.

Royal Southern Commodore, Chris Mansfield officiated at the Prize Giving, which was well attended in the Upper Bar at the Royal Southern Yacht Club. The Commodore introduced Martin Gammon, Joseph Perrier Champagne UK Director who presented winners with generous prizes of Joseph Perrier champagne.  For more J/111 Europeans sailing information

J/109 Wins Volvo CORK Week Regatta!

J/109 Cork Week winners (Cork, Ireland)- Shrouded in sea fog, the final day of racing at Volvo Cork Week was curtailed to just one race for some classes. However, as the mist cleared, class winners appeared and the inaugural IRC European Champion went to the wire. Located outside Cork Harbour, the visibility was just too bad for safe racing for IRC Zero, One and Two and the results remained unchanged from the previous day. The Final Prize Giving was held at the Royal Cork Yacht Club, established in 1720, the antique silverware being presented includes some of the world oldest and famous trophies but the two biggest awards of Volvo Cork Week are brand new this year.

Commissioned by Irish Minister Simon Coveney, the Waterford Crystal Beaufort Cup has been won by Defence Forces B racing the J/109 JOKER 2, skippered by Cmdt Barry Byrne.  Defence Force B Team have nominated Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Dublin for the €10,000 award. However the winning team have donated €1000 to the RNLI Baltimore, who came second in The Beaufort Cup, as a show of their sportsmanship.

“To have so many teams and top quality racing in the first year of the Beaufort Cup is amazing,” commented Barry Byrne. “The offshore race around the Fastnet is one of the most enjoyable races I have ever done. We saw dolphins and whales literally the whole way round and eight boats rounded the Fastnet Rock within sight of each other. We already have confirmed interest from USA, France, Canada and Spain for 2018. The goal is to make The Beaufort Cup the biggest emergency and military services regatta in the world and I would like to applaud Minister Simon Coveney and Vice Admiral Mark Mellett for their continued support for the initiative and all of the teams that participated.”

It was great racing over the course of Volvo Cork Week; here is how it went down each day.

Day One
The week got off to a supersonic start with a fly-by of four PC9 aircraft passing over the start line of the Beaufort Cup fleet, heading for the Fastnet Rock for their offshore race. Thirteen teams entered the inaugural international services competition supported by the Irish Defence Forces, with a top prize of 10,000 Euros to a nominated charity.

For the remainder of the Volvo Cork Week fleet, there was racing on the first day in Cork Harbour and the Atlantic Approaches. A solid 12 knots of breeze from the North decrease during the day but a significant sea state remained for competitors on the Slalom Course and Windward Leeward course south of Roches Point.

IRC Two was extremely competitive, Ian Nagle’s Royal Cork team racing J/109 JELLY BABY was second for the day and Royal Irish skipper, Richard Goodbody racing the J/109 WHITE MISCHIEF finished the day with a second to secure a fourth in class.

J/109 at Cork WeekDay Two
The Irish Defence Forces team, racing the J/109 JOKER 2, and skippered by Cmdt Barry Byrne, won the inaugural Beaufort Cup’s 140-mile Fastnet Race, held as part of Volvo Cork Week. Racing continues for the Beaufort Cup with three days of inshore racing but the offshore win has put the team in the driving seat for the new trophy and 10,000 Euros for their nominated charity.

“We are over the moon.” smiled Barry Byrne. “Late last night in light airs, most of the fleet compressed together and we gybed out for more wind offshore and got it. From then on, we kept our position between the Fastnet and the boats behind to consolidate on that gain and those tactics got us through. But it was a tough fight all the way to the Rock and a tough slog all the way back.” We are looking forward to the inaugural Beaufort Cup Gala Dinner tonight, to meet our colleagues from overseas to discuss the challenges to come.”

J/24 sailing Cork, IrelandDay Three
The key to a top performance today was reacting to the squalls and shifts, emanating from the Old Head of Kinsale, sending a stream of pressure bullets down to Roches Point.

In the IRC 4 class, the Howth YC Under 25 team racing J/24 Ireland’s Eye Kilcullen took second and, as a result, was very much in the frame for the overall win in the IRC European Championship!

Day Four
One hundred yachts, of all shapes and sizes, graced Cork Harbour on the fourth day of Cork Week- the traditional “in the Bay” race made for quite a spectacle!  The weather lived up to the spectacular location with bright sunshine bathing the course for most of the day.

In the Beaufort Cup division, the J/109 JOKER 2 team sealed their win with yet another first place.  Taking sixth place was the Royal Engineers YC team on the J/109 TROJAN of UPNOR.

J/112E sailing Cork WeekSailing in the IRC Coastal Class 1 was the brand new J/112E sport cruiser- AQUELINA- owned and skippered by Sheila & James Tyrrell.  The more races they sailed, the faster they went!  Ultimately, they finished a solid third place, just one point out of second!

For the IRC Two class, a terrific battle for third place was won by Richard Goodbody’s Royal Irish team, racing the J/109 WHITE MISCHIEF. Their colleagues in the three other J/109s went 6th through 8th- Pat Kelly’s STORM from Howth YC, then Ian Nagle’s JELLY BABY from Royal Cork YC, then Michel Hiesweiller’s VRIJGEZEILIG from Cardiff Bay.

In IRC 4, the Under 25 Howth team, with skipper Cillian Dickson racing J/24 Ireland’s Eye Kilcullen took second place to remain in second overall for the regatta. Dave Lane & Sinead Enright’s J/24 YA GOTTA WANNA from Royal Cork YC took fourth place.

Finally, in the IRC Mixed Sports boat classes were two J/80s- Dominic Baxter & Ernie Dillon’s RIOJA took silver while Fergus Coughlan’s JEDI placed fourth.   Sailing photo credits- Tim Wright/   For more CORK Week sailing information

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Rosow Wins J/109 North Americans

J/109 Loki- David RosowMAXINE Tops IRC 3, YONDER Dominates J/88s @ NYYC Race Week
(Newport, RI)- With 19 boats, the J/109 fleet was the biggest to compete in the 2016 New York Yacht Club Race Week at Newport presented by Rolex. By the time the first race started on the final day, however, only two boats mattered. David Rosow's LOKI (Southport, Conn.) and Donald Filippelli's CAMINOS (Amagansett, N.Y.) started the day tied at 23 points each. With third place 14 points back and a morning delay limiting the class to just one race, the class's North American Championship, and a Rolex Stainless Steel Submariner Date timepiece, came down to which of these boats beat the other around the track.

Rosow preached all regatta about keeping things simple. With the regatta on the line, he didn't see any reason to stray from the approach that had gotten them this far.

"We wanted the pin end and to be near CAMINOS,” he said. "If the opportunity presented itself we would’ve gotten in front of them. We knew we had boat speed compared to the fleet. We had a good start in the front row. We knew it was a two-boat race, and we just had to beat them."

While Rosow was able to get away cleanly from the pin end, CAMINOS found itself mired in traffic after a mid-line start, and was eventually forced to tack away. By the time the boats came together at the windward mark, LOKI was second, with CAMINOS two spots back.  With the early advantage, and a steady 6-10 kt breeze opening few passing lanes, the key was to simply not overthink the strategy for the remainder of the race.

"From there we just shepherded them around the course," said Rosow, who has owned LOKI for 10 years. "Full credit to CAMINOS, they sailed very impressively. They’re good competitors."

FJ/44 Maxine sailing New York YC regattaor Rosow, this is his first North American championship. He has won distance races before, but never anything on this scale in one-design competition. Adding in a Rolex watch and, no surprise, he was pretty elated, “pumped up! Incredible! I have a perma grin that won’t come off for a while."

NYYC Rear Commodore Bill Ketcham (Greenwich, Conn.) started the regatta on fire, his J/44 MAXINE winning the first four races in IRC 3 division. But a 10th in Race 5 put the lead back into play for two other boats.  However, after two races on the final day, the difference between the three boats' overall scores was just half a point!  In the end, it was Ketcham’s J/44 MAXINE taking the class win with the NYYC Annual Regatta Round Island Race winner- Tom Sutton’s J/35 LEADING EDGE- holding on to 5th place.

J/88 sailing New York YC regattaThe J/88 one-design class saw spirited and very close competition.  After the first day blitzkrieg of 1-1-2, it appeared that Mike Bruno’s WINGS crew was hot on the trail to yet another class win.  However, by days two and three their momentum faltered, posting a 5-5-4-4 to drop them into second place for the regatta.  Conversely, Doug Newhouse’s YONDER team also started off well with a 2-2-4 on the first day and managed to post three bullets in the next few races to ultimately win the class by six points.  Third was the New York YC Annual Regatta J/88 Class winner, Doug McKeige’s JAZZ.  Fourth was Iris Vogel’s DEVIATION from Long Island Sound and fifth place was Jeff Johnstone’s family crew on ELECTRA.  For more New York YC Race Week sailing information

J/88 Sails Singlehanded TransPac

J/88 TransPac (Hanalei, Hawaii)- The Singlehanded Sailing Society puts on the Singlehanded TransPac race every two years, ever since the first race, way back in 1978.  Since then, more people have made it to outer space than have raced singlehanded from San Francisco to Hawaii.  But, if you like to sail by yourself, paradoxically, you’re still in good company.

The race is open to ocean-going boats and skippers.  This is not an event catering to the latest and greatest go-fast machines, but rather attracts the adventurous skippers that want to test themselves out on the Big Blue Pacific Ocean, and do it in the boats they already own.  It’s a long way from here to there.  Single-handing doesn’t make the race any easier; every skipper is navigating, cooking, sailing hard, all the while fixing what breaks along the way, but as long as you and your boat meet the safety requirements, you are set.  No foils needed.

For many, it is the adventure of a lifetime.  The camaraderie amongst skippers begins even before the fleet assembles for race day inspection.  At the docks, competitors fine-tune last minute preparations, and it’s great to visit the other entries to see the varying solutions to shared problems.  Where does one best stow the “dog” food?  How many spinnakers will fit in the forepeak?  Who is carrying ice cream to Hawaii?

Making landfall in Hanalei Bay marks the completion of an enormous undertaking – a personal victory!  By race finish, you will be a different person.  You will know more about yourself, your boat, your competitors, and what lies beyond the horizon.  As Mike Jefferson put it in his 1996 race log, “Offshore sailing by oneself is a strenuous test of a person’s inner character.  Technical skill and experience are, of course, very useful.”  If you didn’t get enough on the way there, there’s always the sail home. Though not part of the race itself, the return trip becomes a significant part of the experience.

The Hanelei treeThe Ultimate Objective is to get to the “Tree”!  A tree?  Yes, a very special Tree.  Under this Tree at sunset in Hanalei Bay, you will share the highlights and lowlights (which eventually become highlights) and just swap “sea stories” of your journey with race committee, family, friends, and your fellow sailors. If a “Tree experience” isn’t enticing enough, you can compete with the likes of Stan Honey and Steve Fossett to see if you can best their record times- for keelboats it’s Stan’s Cal 40 ILLUSION time of 11:10:52:21 set in 1994.  This year’s boats were not far off the mark until beset by light sections in the race.

The latest update from Chris Cartwright on his J/88 VENTUS proved it was a most eventful experience.

For starters, Chris was second boat-for-boat to finish against an over-powered, modded Olson 30 KATO sailed by Jiri Senkyrik.  Then, Chris was up against similarly updated, over-powered (e.g. big chutes on big poles) of other classic California downwind speedsters.  Nevertheless, his extraordinary performance was marked by hoving-too (sailing nowhere) to fix a boom gooseneck issue and then, again, having to do the same to offset some “5 or more things I hit” during the course of the race.  Subtracting even an hour from his boom scenario would have put Chris’ J/88 as the easy overall winner of the SSS TransPac Race. That is a significant achievement to have finished 2nd overall and, despite all obstacles, fourth in class against well-known offshore sleds like an Olson 29, Olson 30, Santa Cruz 27, Express 27, Wilderness 30 and “wedges of cheese” like Pogo 2 and a MiniTransat 6.0!  Notably, the J/88’s class cleaned house for all overall and class positions that is how tough the competition was over 2,000nm of Pacific Ocean!  More of a report later from Chris about his experiences offshore.  Here were some blog posts from Chris’ experience:

Chris- J/88 sailor extraordinaire offshoreJuly 2nd 1559 hrs- “A little rusty from not enough sailing and much planning.  Managed to start cleanly, this was my only goal.  1/2 way across bay before finally got reefs tucked in!  And, went wrong way tactically! Ugh.  One competitor, “Fast Lane” surprised me with a close port crossing.  No need for coffee!!

Outside the gate, it became very light.  One of the Olson’s put up a Genoa and reeled me in quickly.  I am trying hard just to get west now and into synoptic breeze.  For months, I had imagined cracking off and going south.  Not today!  But, the boat is moving well going west with south swell.”

July 3rd 0659 hrs- “Last night was thrilling and scary.  Winds built to a solid 25 with higher gusts and seas 8-12 feet.  Ventus going 10-12 knots with double reefed main and small jib.  Visibility was nil!  Boat was great. Skipper has a bad case of mal du mere (bad stomach). Slowing boat down today and making some recovery.  Kites are begging to be launched as winds have eased! But, given time and better stomach. Some Wi-Fi issues but solved for now.  Engine charging working well.”

July 4th 0900 hrs- “I “met” Jeane Socrates (Nereida). At about 0200 today as our bows crossed.  Lovely lady. Mal du mere improving and hoping to see some sunshine soon. I keep thinking the overcast is thinning. But, probably my imagination. Starting to get into a rhythm with the boat.  It’s become nicer sailing each day.  Please correct any typos as the saltwater has given me even fatter fingers!”

J/88 sailing offshoreJuly 4th 2100 hrs- “No fireworks and able to eat my first freeze dried meal. Yay for the nutrition!   Now that brain has some glucose, trying to figure out plan for rest of race. Despite having a fast boat and lots of input from very very good racers, my goal has always been a fun sail. I am juggling the usual rhumb lines vs what Expedition (routing software) tells me.  So far, I have basically been sailing comfortable angles towards Hawaii. I have been below Polars in part because I have no crew and probably not sailing to max. I see a couple tropical storms in the future and have some concerns about them.  It appears I should be able to get in ahead of them.”

July 5th 0900 hrs- “Here I am sitting in my nav station- a bean bag chair!  For me, one of the hardest parts is managing other people’s expectations leading up to the trip or managing what I think they except.

I have always loved sailing, the feel of the invisible force propelling a boat forward.  I love a boat that balances out and feels good to drive.  I ended up with a J/88 because I made the mistake of trying it and loved the feel and responsiveness!  I didn’t purchase the boat because I want to race or necessarily go fast.  There is always someone going much faster. One of my fond memories was sailing with a friend on San Francisco Bay going 4 knots in a J/24 and being passed by an AC-72 foiler going 40 kts(ish)!

I know many people look at my boat and think fast and assume I am trying to race.  I am not.  I am trying to learn about myself and have this experience and it is the boat I have now.  I am in the middle of my life (perhaps it is the classic midlife crisis) but I am trying to sort some things out.

I have been fortunate to have had contact with some excellent sailors who helped guide me through the myriad of decisions.  Sails, electronics, electrical systems, and on and on.  Because of their background, most of the stuff and decision for most things are go-fast oriented.

So far, the boat is performing beautifully! And, I am managing.  I have found I enjoy the open water but miss the company of other people both for problem solving and just companionship.  It is probably a good thing for all of us to develop some comfort with being alone.  And this is one of my challenges for this passage!

I saw the tropical storms predicted to cross our paths and thought hard about diverting to Santa Barbara.”

Chris off watchJuly 7th 0600 hrs- “Ah! Morning coffee on Ventus!  Watt & Sea hydro-generator hums along and keeps up with electrical demands even when going slow, it’s an nice change from charging with engine!

I have settled into a routine.  Basic plan is to not go further south in search of breeze.  The tropical storm/hurricane has my attention.  I am amazed by the southern ocean racers who actively seek out storms.  I am going to take to slow route from here.  It’s beautiful!”

July 7th 0830 hrs- “Kite up again on Ventus! After attempting to go wing and wing last night when winds were light and kite would not fill.  I had a night of rocking rolling and banging of rig with swell and no wind.  The fine trim mainsheet was caught in a gybe and is out of action (not an issue). The real issue was that a horizontal pin connecting the boom to gooseneck shook out. This was a bit of a low spot for me because although trades would blow me to Hawaii.  It would be a long long trip. After some encouraging words from friends and SSS community, a few Allen keys, a cotter pin and duct tape, things seem to be holding together!”

July 8th 0910 hrs- “Into the Goodies before midnight!  Port tack and a lot south overnight to move into more wind.  Plan to flip over to starboard to increase velocity to Hawaii for the day.  With luck might get into 1/2 way bag before midnight.”

J/88 in HawaiiJuly 8 1430 hrs- “Ooops.  Miscalculation: No goodie bag today for Ventus.  My previous longest spinnaker run was about 3 hours coming back from the Farallones Islands.   I’m over 30 hours now.  Wind has been light, but made enough south it seems it has filled in around 12 knots.  Sea state low.  Wish there was bigger swell to surf, but even with the little ones the boat releases fast down the waves!  What a surfboard the J/88 is!  Basically, enjoying boat in middle of ocean.  However, I have miscalculated.  Tomorrow should hit halfway. Fix on boom is holding.  Boat is rocking and rolling around and my brain isolated with it. Thanks to all for putting on this great event.  Hope the rest of fleet is doing well and enjoying themselves!”

July 10th 0400 hrs- In a very succinct text message received late last night. Chris reported hitting 5 objects. “So much stuff hit.  Carried something along.  Could not see it, killed my speed.  Had to stop and back down.  Now off, back at 8 – 9 knots!  Thank goodness!”

July 10th 1600 hrs- “Only 899nm left! Starting to feel that I will get there soon.  But, then I realize that is still a lot of sailing. I guess I’m in the trades now.  Water getting warmer.  Wind very steady.   And, a strong 20 knots of breeze, pretty consistent.  Still working on keeping the boat going straight as I pitch roll and yaw my way down the waves.  It’s pretty peaceful and wonderful.  The boat handles like a dream!”

July 11 1508 hrs- “Ventus cogitates.  I was once told when in doubt put the jib on a stick and point the bow at the barn.  Finally, listened and what do you know 8-9 knots boatspeed surfing to 12 kts and Hanalei bay direct.  Not much rolling and sitting in a bean bag contemplating life.  I remembered my gooseneck repair and decided to inspect before taking a nap.  Sadly, a couple jibes during the night had loosened up the pieces holding it together.  There is a reason Hall Spars doesn’t used bits of leftover tools to hold boom to gooseneck.  In an unbelievable stroke of luck, I found the original pin captured by the jib car underneath a line. I scavenged a nut from the boat that was too long but at least slathered in Duralac so it won’t shake free.  Kluged together a way to keep original pin in place.  At this point, turned into the wind to drop sails.  And the upwind against wave ride is quite different.  A lot of fiddling, but the repair seems more solid and Ventus is once again pointed in the right direction.  God, yet more hours given up against the competition. But, all is well here on the J/88 Ventus.  Happy to get home to the finish!”  For more SSS TransPac Race sailing information.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Wyman Crowned J/70 West Coast Champ!

J/70 Fiesta Cup off Santa Barbara, CA (Santa Barbara, CA)- The J/70 West Coast Championship was hosted by Santa Barbara YC as part of the fun-loving annual Fiesta Cup Regatta.  After the amazing luau-styled barbecue on Saturday night (a BBQ on the beach with awesome local band and free-flowing margarita bar), nothing was going to slow down nor stop Steve Wyman’s crew on NUNUHUNU from winning the regatta.  In fact, after three bullets and two 3rds in the first seven races, they did not have to sail the last race to win!

Starting out the weekend with two bullets in two races, Pat Toole’s crew on 3 BIG DOGS look set to repeat past performances at the top of the J/24 class.  However, the wheels flew off their shopping trolley sometime around races 3 & 4, posting an 11-7 in succession to fall back to mid-fleet.  However, after collecting their wits back together, they quickly rattled off a 3-2-2-1, improving every race to close out the regatta with a win and securing the silver overall.

For the balance of the top five, it was bloody battle to the very end.  Essentially, all weekend-long, three boats were tied- Ken Kieding’s SMOKE & MIRRORS 3, Scott Deardorff’s CAKE and Steve Hendricks’ MONKEY HOUSE.  It really came down to the last race to determine their three-way tie.  By taking a 2nd in the finale, Kieding’s SMOKE & MIRRORS snagged the final spot on the podium to take the bronze.  However, tied on 36 pts each, it was Deardorff’s CAKE that grabbed fourth place over Hendricks’ MONKEY HOUSE.  Great sailing for all!  For more J/70 West Coast Championship sailing information

J/Teams Dominate Bayview Mac Race

J/35 Mr Bill's Wild Ride- winners Bayview Mac race (Port Huron, MI)- The Bell’s Beer Bayview Mackinac Race proved to be a fast ride for the 214 boats that started Saturday, July 16, from Port Huron with all but 14 teams completing the contest in Mackinac Island.  After looking at weather models) most of the top boats stayed to the west of the fleet.

According to one winning navigator, “the first couple of hours were tricky, because the wind didn’t do what it was supposed to, but we still stuck with our plan, hugging the Michigan shoreline. We had some traffic issues in the first 6-8 hours, which cost us- by 7pm Saturday night, we were 3-4 miles behind everyone. But we stayed patient, and as the overnight hours came, we were able to see the rest of our class starting to sail higher and slow because they were being lifted toward the Canadian shore (that is what we wanted to avoid). Once we saw that, we made the effort to sail lower and keep getting the separation on our competition. We made our gains and passed them. There aren’t many passing opportunities on the second part of race, so we just got to the finish as fast as we could.”

The largest fleet of J’s sailed the longer “Cove Island Course”- from the start off Port Huron, the fleet headed NNE to Cove Island just off Canada in northern Lake Huron, then they headed practically due west to the Mackinac Island finish line.

J/120 sailing Bayview Mac raceWinning Class B was Chris Saxton’s J/145 VORTICES from Bayview YC.  Class C was the J/120 One-Design class with eleven boats entered.  It was a battle the entire way for this group, as it usually is!  Winning by just 7 minutes overall was Geoff Brieden & Jeff Clark’s SCOUT.  Taking second was Frank Kern’s CARINTHIA, third was Mike & Bob Kirkman’s HOT TICKET, fourth Ed Vermet & John Hughes NAUTIBOYS and fifth Dave Sandlin’s JAYHAWKER.

Winning Class D by well over two hours corrected was the dynamic duo of Jim Mitchell & Bruce Danly on the J/109 TOA!  Third was the J/105 PTERODACTYL (Mary Symonds), followed by yet another J/105- GOOD LOOKIN (Mark DenUyl) in fourth position. Port Sanilac Marina’s J/88 SARALYSIA was fifth place.

Crushing it in Class G- the Level 35 boats- was none other than Bill Wildner’s famous J/35- MR BILL’S WILD RIDE!  Second was another J/35- Ed & John Bayer’s FALCON and in fourth was the next J/35- Gregg Whipple’s WHIPLASH.

Four J/teams sailed the shorter “Shore Course”.  That fleet started off Port Huron and basically went straight north along the eastern Michigan shoreline until they turned left to the finish in the Straits off Mackinac Island.  Taking third in Class I was Brett Langolf’s J/34 IOR- KNEE DEEP.  Duplicating their past success, the J/29 PATRIOT sailed by Lyndon Lattie took the silver in Class L Doublehanded Racing!  For more Bell’s Beer Bayview Mackinac Race sailing information

SAILING Champions League Act I Announcement

J/70 sailing champions league (St Petersburg, Russia)- The first event of the SAILING Champions League 2016 will take place in St Petersburg, Russia from August 26th to 28th at St. Petersburg Yacht Club. The line-up for the qualification event for the finale that takes place at YC Costa Smeralda in Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy includes a total of 32 sailing clubs from across Europe.  For the first Act in St Petersburg, the teams will be sailing in a matched fleet of International one-design J/70s.

So far, twenty-two clubs have already registered for the SAILING Champions League Act I in St. Petersburg. The current list of participants include the following:
  • Austrian Sailing League- Burgenländischer Yacht-Club & Segelclub TWV Achensee
  • Dutch Sailing League- R.R. & Z.V. Maas en Roer & WV Almere Centraal
  • Danish Sailing League- Hellerup Sejlklub & Aarhus Sejlklub
  • Finnish Sailing League- Nyländska Jaktklubben & Wasa Segelförening
  • German Sailing League- Berliner Yacht-Club & Norddeutscher Regatta Verein
  • Italian Sailing League- Società Velica di Barcola e Grignano & Yacht Club Adriaco
  • Norwegian Sailing League- Nesodden Seilforening & Arendals Seilforening
  • Polish Sailing League- Yacht Klub Polski Szczecin & JKW HRM Racing Poznań
  • Russian Sailing League- Yacht Club PIRogovo & St Petersburg Yacht Club
  • Swedish sailing League- Ekolns Segelklubb & Värmdö Jolleseglare
  • Swiss Sailing League- Regattaclub Bodensee & La Société Nautique de Genève
For more SAILING Champions League regatta information

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Johnstone Brothers Elected to Sailing Hall of Fame

Bob & Rod Johnstone- Sailing Hall of Fame (Newport, RI)- Johnstone brothers honored by 2016 National Sailing Hall of Fame (NSHOF).  Today, it was announced that nine people will make up the 2016 class of inductees in the NSHOF:  America’s Cup winning helmsman Ed Baird (St. Petersburg, Fla.); legendary sailing champion (Star Worlds, Congressional Cup and America’s Cup) Bill Ficker (Newport Beach, Calif.); husband and wife sail training pioneers, adventurers and authors Irving and Electa “Exy” Johnson (Hadley, Mass.); brothers and J/Boats co-founders, Robert Johnstone (Newport, R.I.) and Rodney Johnstone (Stonington, Conn.), respectively, marketing guru and boat designer; yachtsman and sailmaker Dave Ullman (Newport Beach, Calif.); as well as America’s Cup sailor and Star World Champion Malin Burnham (San Diego, Calif.) and the innovator behind the modern square rigged Superyacht “The Maltese Falcon”, Tom Perkins (Belvedere, Calif.), each of whom is being recognizing with a Lifetime Achievement Award.

These nine members of the class of 2016 will join 48 previously-recognized individuals as the National Sailing Hall of Fame continues to fulfill its mission by drawing recognition to Americans who have made outstanding contributions to the sport of sailing.

“The achievements of this year’s group of inductees – whether on-the-water, at a drafting table, or in teaching and coaching others to succeed in the sport – have at their root a joy of sailing that has inspired and affected countless competitive sailors and recreational boaters,” said Gary Jobson, President of the NSHOF. “The NSHOF is proudly preserving the history of the sport and its impact on American culture while inspiring the next generation of sailors by recognizing these contributors and sharing their stories.”

Following a two-month period this spring during which sailors from all corners of the country nominated their choice for induction, a selection committee – made up of representatives from US Sailing, the sailing media, the sailing industry, community sailing, a maritime museum, a previous inductee, and the NSHOF Board – reviewed the broad spectrum of nominations.

Inductees are American citizens, 45 years of age or older, who have made significant impact on the growth and development of the sport in the U.S. in the categories of Sailing, Technical/Design and Contributor (coach, administrator, sailing media). Nominations of non-citizens were also considered if they influenced the sport in the U.S., and posthumous nominations were also accepted. The undertaking to recognize Americans who have made outstanding contributions to the sport of sailing is central to the mission of the NSHOF that was formed in 2005 and has completed phase one of its plan to establish a permanent facility on the historic waterfront of Annapolis, Maryland.

The Lifetime Achievement Award inducts an American citizen, 55 years of age or older, who has had consistent involvement in sailing for a majority of his or her life and had success in the sport while also becoming successful and achieving noteworthy stature in a non-sailing career.

The 2016 class of inductees will be formally celebrated on Sunday, October 30th, 2016. The invitation-only Induction Ceremony will be held at the St. Francis Yacht Club (San Francisco, Calif.) and is sponsored by Condé Nast and Rolex Watch U.S.A.  Additional support is provided by Anchor Steam, Dream Yachts, Hawkstone Vineyards, Mount Gay Rum, and Volvo Penta.  The NSHOF will dedicate the 2016 Induction to the AmericaOne Foundation.  AmericaOne was a finalist in the challenger selection series of the 2000 America’s Cup, representing St. Francis Yacht Club. Since then, the AmericaOne foundation has been supportive of sailing on many levels, including Olympic Sailing, disabled sailing and exposing underprivileged youth to sailing.  For more on the Sailing Hall of Fame Inductees, please visit here.

J/160 Pipe Dream Cruising to Bahamas

J/160 Pipe Dream sailing from Bermuda to Bahamas (Hamilton, Bermuda)- The J/160 PIPE DREAM update- from RoseAnn Vineberg and Mike D'Errico:   “We spent The Fourth of July docked at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club. Fireworks were a little skimpy, but what do you expect when the British lost!  Today, July 5th, we sailed from Hamilton to St.George's, and will clear customs in the morning and head directly to sea. It will be 4-5 days to the Bahamas, depending where we choose to put-in. The weather looks good.

While here in St. George's, docked next to the super yacht, "Altair," a man came over to Pipe Dream. His name is Roddy Hearn. I first met him on a remote beach in Western Mexico! His parents are CCA members from Seattle. In Mexico they all asked to share our beach party fire in exchange for some fish they caught that day. Since then, I have seen them in Seattle, St. Lucia and Scotland! It is a very small world, indeed!

As I write this, it is a very nice night here. The tree frogs are singing loudly. However, I am looking forward to being in the ocean tomorrow.  More soon on this most amazing adventure!”