Tuesday, May 22, 2018

J/46, J/105, J/30 Top Oregon Offshore Race

J/46 Oregon Offshore Race (Victoria, BC, Canada)- The 42nd annual Oregon Offshore International Yacht Race was held this past weekend. The race started on May 10, 2018. The starting line was off the mouth of the Columbia River.  The boats then proceeded north to the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and finished at Victoria, British Columbia, inside the harbor entrance. The course distance is 193 miles; twenty-two boats entered the race (six of them J/teams) while fourteen boats finished.

From the start and going up the coast, it appeared the boats that worked offshore had better winds.  However, once turning the tip of the Olympic Peninsula to head back southeast down the Straits of Juan de Fuca, the big battle became the flood turning to ebb and which side to pick?  Canadian (north shore) or Washington (south shore- USA)?  Virtually all boats chose the northern shore to escape current and for more breeze.

In PHRF A1 Division, it was Scott Campbell’s beautiful flag blue J/46 RIVA that took second in her class, followed by Tom Keffer’s J/42 VELOCITY in fourth position.  Then, in PHRF A2 Division, it was Doug Pihlaja’s J/105 ABSTRACT that won class honors.  Finally, in PHRF C Division, Theo Singelis’s J/30 TAKU took class honors, too!

Next up for these intrepid adventurers is the annual Pacific Northwest offshore classic- the Swiftsure International Race in a few weeks time.  For Oregon Offshore Race sailing & tracking information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Successful Spring Tune-Up for J/121 Speedsters!

Monday, May 21, 2018

ENFANT TERRIBLE- ADRIA FERRIES Two-Peats!

J/70 Enfant Terrible- Italy winnerWin Italian J/70 Cup Act II- Porto Ercole
(Porto Ercole, Italy)- A battle for the podium until the last gybe characterized the finale of the J/70 Cup in Porto Ercole, the second act of the Open Italian J/70 Circuit. The event consisted of three-days of racing, with eight races completed in wonderful sunny conditions and with moderate breeze up to 18 kts for the fleet of fifty-one crews racing from nine countries (Austria, Great Britain, Germany, Italy, Malta, Monaco, Poland, Russia, Switzerland).

On the last day, going into the last race, a six points gap separated the fleet leader, Alberto Rossi’s ENFANT TERRIBLE- ADRIA FERRIES from Gianfranco Noe’s CALVI NETWORK, and Claudia Rossi’s PETITE TERRIBLE (a family affair, as she is Alberto’s daughter); a race where there was a potential for a drastic change in team placements on the final podium.

J/70s sailing off Porto Ercole, ItalyThe first boat to cross the finish line for the leading trio in the final run to the finish was CALVI NETWORK in 8th position, four boats ahead of ENFANT TERRIBLE. But, the gap was not enough to gain the overall lead, despite a disastrous 24th in race 7 for Alberto Rossi’s crew that included Branko Brcin, Andrea Felci, Stefano Rizzi and Bianca Crugnola. As a result, ENFANT TERRIBLE took the gold with 33 pts net, Noe’s CALVI NETWORK just two points back to take second with 35 pts net.  Then, with an easy shot at the lead, Claudia Rossi’s PETITE TERRIBLE crew could not crack the top ten in the last race, posting a 15th to remain in third overall with 41 pts net.

J/70 Petite Terrible- Claudia RossiEnjoy a cool sailing video of PETITE TERRIBLE sailing team (Claudia Rossi, Michele Paoletti, Simone Spangaro, Gaia Ciacchi, & Matteo Mason) here.

Rounding out the top five in the open division was Franco Solerio’s L’ELAGAIN in 4th and Luca Domenici’s NOTARO TEAM LEGGI D’ITALIA in 5th.

In the Corinthian division, the winners were Alessio Marinelli’s UJI UJI, who managed to overtake Paolo Tomsic’s LA FEMME TERRIBLE, leader of their division for the first two days of racing. Second place went to Alessandro Zampori’s NOBERASCO DAS who maintained their position at the end of the races of Saturday.  Third place went to LA FEMME TERRIBLE after disastrous last day finishes of 13-39.

J/70s having fun sailing off ItalyIn the last day of racing, the two races were won by Valerya Kovalenko’s Russian crew on ARTTUBE and Germany’s Markus Wieser on MISSION IMPOSSIBLE.

Maurizio Belloni, Vice-President of CNV Argentario, commented, "We are honored that J/70 Italian Class chose Porto Ercole as the location of its regatta and we were blessed with great weather conditions and the excellent work of the Race Committee.”

Leaving Porto Ercole, some of the fleet will head to Vigo, Spain, where from June 12th to 16th many crews will take part in the J/70 European Championship, sailing on the open waters of the wild Atlantic Ocean. Among these, Claudia Rossi on board PETITE TERRIBLE will be there to defend her title earned in the last two years.  However, this year may be her most challenging event yet.  Also competing will be ENFANT TERRIBLE, JENIALE EUROSYSTEM, LA FEMME TERRIBLE, NOBERASCO DAS and many other top European teams.

The next event organized by Italian J/70 Class will be the third act of the Italian J/70 Cup in Malcesine, hosted by Fraglia Vela Malcesine on the fabulous Lago di Garda from July 12th to 15th.  For more Italian J/70 Cup sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

J/70 TANGAROA Wins Yachting Cup Overall!

J/70 Tangaroa- winners Yachting Cup San Diego (San Diego, CA)- Seventy-nine teams competed in ten fleets in the 2018 Yachting Cup, held May 5-6 in San Diego, CA. David Hochart’s J/70 team on TANGAROA won the final race to secure their class victory and get recognized as the overall event winner.

Hosted by the San Diego YC, the 2018 Yachting Cup was held from May 4th to 6th off the promontory of Point Loma and in the South Bay southeast of the city of San Diego. The Yachting Cup is one of SDYC’s signature events.  The principal one-design classes in the regatta were J/70s, J/105s, and J/120s. In addition, there were PHRF Offshore handicap classes.

J/70 sailing Yachting Cup San DiegoThe J/70s had a dozen boats racing, with seven races sailed over the two days. Winning was Hochart’s TANGAROA with three bullets in their scoreline and a total of 16 pts next.  Second was Chris Snow’s COOL STORY BRO with 19 pts and third was Jay Janov’s MINOR THREAT with 23 pts.  Rounding out the top five were Curt Johnson’s AVET 2.01 and Jim Murrell’s HUCKLEBERRY in 4th and 5th, respectively.

Nine teams sailed in the challenging J/105 fleet.  While generally a very close battle for the podium, it was anything but this year.  Somehow, Stew Cannon’s crew on J-OK found the “whup-ass” button and hit it hard every race, posting three bullets and tossing a 4th to win with just 12 pts net, 6 pts clear of last year’s winner- Rick Goebel & Donica Ryder’s SANITY.  Third was the duo of Hurlburt & Driscoll on JUICED, J/105s sailing Yachting Cup San Diegolike SANITY, throwing out a last race DSQ to secure their position.  Rounding out the top five were Rich Bergmann’s ZUNI BEAR in 4th and Steve & Lucy Howell’s BLNIK in 5th.

Perhaps the most crushing performance came in the very competitive J/120 fleet.  Talk about a “schooling”, John Laun’s CAPER crew truly achieved one of the most amazing performances ever in the class, winning with all 1sts and having to throw out a 1st to win with only 5 pts! In the meantime, it seems everyone else conceded the win to CAPER while the next three boats spent the weekend trading body blows every race. In the end, second place for three boats was determined by a one point spread and a tie-breaker! It was so tight that it came down to the last race and the last run home to the finish line to determine who-beat-who! Rudolph Hasl’s HASL FEE finished with a 3rd to close with 14 pts total, enough to secure the silver.  However, Chuck Nichol’s CC RIDER crew must certainly feel the pain, as in the last race they dropped from a certain 2nd place to third after posting a 5th in the final race.  That created a tie-breaker on 15 pts each between CC RIDER and Ernie Pennell’s MAD MEN, with Nichol’s taking 3rd on the countback.

In PHRF C Division, it was David Boatner’s J/35 RIVAL that placed 2nd, while Geoff Davis’ J/35 ZFORCE took 4th place- a great show for the venerable J/35 in sunny SD! Sailing photo credits- Bronny Daniels/ JOYSAILING.com  For more Yachting Cup sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

SV Kreuzlingen Leads Swiss J/70 Sailing League

J/70s sailing Swiss Sailing League (Kreuzlingen, Switzerland)- The host club for the second act of the Swiss J/70 Sailing League were not disappointed by the performance of their hometown team- SV Kreuzlingen.  From Friday to Sunday, the “bise” winds blew on the Bodensee Lake between Beaufort 1 to 5 and allowed the Super League teams to sail 42 races for the 12 participating teams from across Switzerland.

The local Bodensee team took advantage of their local knowledge. Bringing home the victory and the series lead was the SV Kreuzlingen crew of Tom Rüegge, Stefan Stäheli, Peter Fritschi and Caroline Tanner-Keller.

The second placed Regattaclub Bodensee (RCB) had a difficult start and was third after the first day. However, the crew found their rhythm and finished their last 7 races with all first and second places. With this amazing performance, the RCB team was able to overtake the Regattaclub Oberhofen (BE) in front of them and work their way up to the leading Kreuzlinger’s. However, the RCB team could never challenge the consistent sailing of SV Kreuzlingen.

J/70 sailing Swiss Sailing LeagueAs a result of the weekend series, the SV Kreuzlingen team has now posted a lofty 1-1 for 2 pts in the series, with three events left for summer 2018.  Sitting in second is RC Bodensee with a 3-2 for 5 pts.  Third is Societe Nautique de Geneve with a 2-6 for 8 pts. They are tied with RC Oberhofen that has a 5-3 for 8 pts.  Then, in provisional fifth place is YC Bielersee with an 8-4 for 12 pts.

The Swiss Sailing Clubs are international leaders in the Sailing Champions League. This year, the sporting level has risen again. The clubs send their best sailors into the regattas and the list of participants reads like a "Who's Who" of Swiss sailing. Olympians, World Champions, European Champions and Swiss Champions in various classes are at the start and want to win the Swiss Sailing League Cup and the Swiss Championship title for their club.  Sailing photo credits- Claudia Somm.  For more Swiss J/70 Sailing League information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

J/70 TSUNAMI Tops Cofradía Náutica del Pacífico

J/70s sailing off Algarrobo, Chile (Algarrobo, Chile)- The 2018 J/70 Worlds qualifier for the Chilean J/70 class took place this past weekend in Algarrobo.  The event was called the Cofradía Náutica del Pacífico and eighteen boats participated over the weekend.

The weather condition was different and stronger than expected and the teams enjoy the series of six races. Two were run on Saturday and four on Sunday.  The first race on Saturday was thrown out due to an improper mark change, so an extra race was added on Sunday.

Conditions on Saturday were quite rare, with west winds and fog blowing onshore!  In the first windward-leeward race, the fog made it impossible to see the leeward mark! So, combine the crazy weather conditions with the tough fleet and made it much more complex than usual.

J/70s sailing off Algarrobo, ChileDuring the two days, especially downwind, gybing onto port at the weather mark to get into the stronger sea breeze was the best strategy. So, all teams worked hard to perform their gybe-set maneuver to gain or maintain advantage on the boats around them.

In the end, the winner was determined by a tie-breaker.  Winning the countback on 12 pts was Andrés Ducasse’s TSUNAMI, while Juan Reid’s WINDMADE had to settle for 2nd place.  Taking the bronze was Pablo Amunátegui’s KENMORE with 17 pts, fourth was Vernon Robert’s MORENITA with 20 pts, and fifth was Carlos Vergara’s SENSEI with 25 pts.

This was the final regatta in the three event qualifying series for the 2018 J/70 Worlds in Marblehead, MA, USA.  Chile took 1 slot from the J/70 South American Champion and 2 more due to having 33 boats in the Chilean national fleet.  Therefore, the following three boats qualified and will be attending the J/70 Worlds this year in the USA- 1st TSUNAMI (Ducasse), 2nd VOLVO (Matias Seguel & Mark Jux), and 3rd WINDMADE (Reid).

The J/70 Fleet will be back to Algarrobo on May 19th to celebrate the Chilean Navy Week again in Cofradía Náutica del Pacífico. Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Three-peat Overall for J/133 PINTIA In RORC Cervantes Race!

J/133 Pintia sailing RORC Cervantes raceJ/121 ROCK LOBSTER Rocks in IRC 1 Debut!
(Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- The overall winner of the 2018 Cervantes Trophy Race after IRC time correction is Gilles Fournier's French J/133 PINTIA, winning the Cervantes Trophy for a third year in a row. And, in her RORC Offshore Racing debut, it was Nick Angel’s brand new British J/121 ROCK LOBSTER that took second in IRC One class!

Forty-seven yachts competed in the Cervantes Trophy Race, the first summer race of the 2018 RORC Season's Points Championship. It was a glassy start to the race, with a light breeze and a warm sunshine bathing the Solent. The Royal Ocean Racing Club chose to select a course of approximately 130 nautical miles, with strategic and tactical decision required for the Solent start, crossing the English Channel, the J/133 Pintia winning team in RORC Cervantes RaceNorth Coast of France, and a reaching finish into Le Havre. After a light airs downwind start, the fleet experienced a building breeze overnight in the English Channel from the northeast, increasing boat speed towards Cussy Buoy, nine miles off the Normandy Coast. A light wind 23-mile beat to navigational buoy A5, was followed by a fresh broad reach to the finish, giving the fleet a variety of wind angles in which to maximize their performance.

Gilles Fournier was delighted to win the Cervantes Trophy and celebrated in his home club Société des Régates du Havre, having won by nearly 40 minutes on corrected IRC handicap time over a brand-new JPK 11.80 IRC rule-beater. Speaking to RORC Racing Manager, Chris Stone, Gilles commented. “It was a J/121 Rock Lobster sailing on Solenttactical race, but I have to admit a lucky one for us as well. Staying in the best breeze was the key, and we found breeze west of the rhumb-line in the Channel, and for the last beat we managed to keep boat speed up by heading east after Cussy Buoy.”

In IRC One,  Nick Angel's brand new, freshly launched, British J/121 ROCK LOBSTER was second in her class; she was just 12 minutes off from winning her race debut in class.

In IRC Three, third was Rob Cotterill's J/109 MOJO RISIN’. Then, in IRC Two-handed Class, Jerry Freeman's J/105 JULIETTE was third.

The RORC Season's Points Championship continues Friday 11th May with the North Sea Race, approximately 180 nautical miles from Harwich to Scheveningen.   Sailing photo credits- Paul Wyeth   For more RORC Offshore series sailing information a data-flip-widget="flipit" href="https://flipboard.com">Add to Flipboard Magazine.

RORC Vice Admirals Cup Preview

J/109 sailing on Solent (Cowes, IOW, England)- This Solent-based inshore regatta is primarily for one-design classes or similar style of boats to enjoy three days of intense racing.  After each day's racing, competitors can enjoy the welcoming atmosphere and socials in the RORC Cowes Clubhouse.

The regatta takes place from Friday, May 18th to Sunday, May 20th.  A mixture of windward/ leeward and “random leg” round-the-cans races are planned for the fleet with up to four races per day!

There are over a dozen J/crews sailing the event, with a J/109 class of seven boats, a J/111 class of seven boats, and the sole J/team in IRC 1 class is Chris Daniel’s J/122E JUNO.

The J/111s include the 2016 J/111 World Champion, Martin Dent’s JELVIS, along with a cadre of top U.K. crews like Chris Jones/ Louise Makin’s JOURNEYMAKER II, Paul Griffiths’ JAGERBOMB, Tony Mack’s McFLY, Cornel Riklin’s JITTERBUG, and the top Dutch Team- Hans Zwijnenburg’s SWEENY.

The top J/109 crews include Simon Perry’s JIRAFFE, Dave Richards’ JUMPING JELLYFISH, John Smart’s JUKEBOX, and Roger Phillips’ DESIGNSTAR 2.  For more RORC Vice Admiral’s Cup sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

J/Crews Leading North Sea Regatta

J/109 sailing North Sea Race (Scheveningen, The Netherlands)- Hosted by the Jachtclub Scheveningen, the North Sea Regatta is the largest event hosted in the Netherlands each year for a host of one-design classes (dinghies, cats, and keelboats like J/22s and J/80s) and offshore ORC/IRC classes.

The event kicked off on May 8th with the Vuurschepen Race, a North Sea Regatta Feeder Race that goes from the starting line off The Hague (Scheveningen) and takes a 3 mark course of 130nm across the North Sea to Harwich in the United Kingdom.  Several J/teams were sailing and almost all had podium finishes!

The “J/All-stars” were in the ORC Two-Handed division.  Winning was Robin Verhoef & John van der Starre’s J/122E AJETO.  Taking the silver was Chris Revelman & Pascal Bakker’s J/122 JUNIQUE/ RAYMARINE and 4th was Wim van Slooten & Jochem Hamstra’s J/109 FIRESTORM.

In the ORC 2 division, taking 3rd was Alain Bornet’s J/109 JAI ALAI and 4th Arjen van Leeuwen’s J/109 JOULE.

J/122E AJETO winning North Sea RaceAfter a two-day layover, on the 11th of May, teams representing Belgium, Denmark, France, Great Britain and the Netherlands entered the 181nm North Sea Race; the start was off Harwich, England and finished in Scheveningen, The Netherlands. The race was organized by the Royal Ocean Racing Club, in association with the Royal Harwich Yacht Club, the East Anglian Offshore Racing Association, and the Yacht Club Scheveningen.

“The race was mostly upwind and reaching, with very few teams getting their spinnakers out of the bag,” commented RORC Racing Manager, Chris Stone. “Conditions conspired to favor the smaller yachts, as the faster boats did not get the breeze that arrived later in the race. Over the course of the season, favorable conditions will average out through the fleet. Well done to the teams that did well, even when the conditions are right for your team, you still have to put in a top performance to win your class, and have a chance of the overall win.”

Women's J/105 double handed team- Panther- NetherlandsIn the IRC Two-Handed Class, Robin Verhoef & John Van Der Starre's Dutch J/122e AJETO was second, and Wim van Slooten's Dutch J/109 FIRESTORM was third.  Then, 4th were the amazing women duo of Edith Voskamp & Yvonne Beusker’s J/105 PANTHER, finishing 5th behind them were Chris Revelman & Pascal Bakker’s J/122 JUNIQUE.

“We are very please with our result, as Two-handed racing in Holland has become very popular and very competitive.” commented AJETO’s Robin Verhoef. “Our J/122e was specially built for Two-handed sailing, and we love to sail that way because we don't need any more crew or all the additional equipment and provisions required when more people are on board. We do have systems designed for two-handed racing, and our preparation is always a big part of producing the best performance.”

As a result, the three teams that are dominating the podium for the overall regatta in the ORC Two-handed Division are AJETO on top, followed by JUNIQUE and FIRESTORM.

On the return trip to the Netherlands, the ORC 2 division J/crews had a rough time.  Settling for 5th was Alain Bornet’s JAI ALAI (currently sitting 2nd in class for the overall regatta) and ending up in 9th was Arjen van Leeuwen’s J/109 JOULE.   Follow the North Sea Regatta on Facebook here   For more North Sea Regatta sailing information   RORC North Sea Race information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Ingham Crowned J/24 NA Champ By A Nose!

J/24 North American winners (Charleston, SC)- Thirty-five J/24s teams descended upon Charleston, South Carolina for the J/24 North American Championship at Charleston Yacht Club. Blessed with three straight days of good onshore breezes to help overcome the strong tides that Charleston Harbor is notorious for, the CYC PRO managed to run eight races for the teams from USA and Mexico.

Winning the 2018 41st edition of the J/24 NA’s was Mike Ingham’s NAUTALYTICS crew of Swedish goddess Marianne Schoke, Max Holzer, Justin Coplan and Quinn Schwenker. There’s was not an easy win as it took until the final day, final race, and final leg for the Shakespearean drama to play out for them to win on a tie-breaker over Will Welles’ BOGUS from Newport, RI.

Day One- Strong Start
After four races, Welles’ BOGUS got off to a solid start in attempting to earn his fourth consecutive North American title. Following a 3-5 in the first two contests, Welles banged out two bullets to end the day with 10 points. Carter White’s YOUREGATTA notched scores of 4-1-3-8 for 16 points and second place. John Mollicone’s HELLY HANSEN held third place with 18 points.

Under clear skies and in breeze between 5-10 knots, Mike Ingham’s NAUTALYTICS opened the Championship with a victory, with Mollicone and Welles behind him. White moved up to the top spot in race two, in front of Robby Brown’s ANGEL OF HARLEM. Welles took the next two battles, ahead of Mexican Kenneth Porter’s MONSTER FISH and White in race three, and Aidan Glackin’s MENTAL FLOSS in the final duel.

Day Two- Light & Goofy
While three teams were tied on points for second through fourth place, they were all looking up at Welles’ Bogus that kept a hold on the top spot with 13 net points in six races so far. A harbor postponement started the day. Racing got underway at 1400 hours in winds of just 6 knots.

BOGUS recorded a sixth in Saturday’s opening race, but able to discard it and add a third in the day’s only other contest, to lead the fleet. Ingham’s NAUTALYTICS leapt up the leaderboard into the silver position, although he shared a tally of 20 points with White’s YOUREGATTA and Mollicone’s HELLY HANSEN.

In the first race of the day, Mark Laura’s BABA LOUIE from Seattle, WA crossed the finish line ahead of James Howard’s CLASSIC and Travis Odenbach’s HONEYBADGER. Ingham made his move in the next battle, as the breeze increased to 10-12 knots. Following him were Mollicone and Welles.

J/24 Nautalytics winning North AmericansDay Three- Anxiety-ridden Finale
Ingham’s NAUTALYTICS came on strong down the stretch to edge out reigning Champion Welles’ BOGUS and win on a tie-breaker.

Ingham entered Sunday’s racing seven points behind Welles. A NAUTALYTICS bullet in the day’s first race, followed by a third, put the pressure on Welles, who recorded a 17 with a scoring penalty (his discard) and then a 5 to tie the two teams on points at 24.

Ingham broke Welles’ three-year North American Championship winning streak from 2015-2017, and it was actually Ingham who held the title prior to that in 2014. Mollicone’s HELLY HANSEN completed the top three overall with 30 points.

“We were third and Will was fourth at the last rounding of the last race,” recalled Ingham, knowing he needed to put one more boat in between them to secure the Championship. “We match raced the final leg. John Mollicone passed Will, and we maintained!” Ingham noted how tough a venue like Charleston can be due to the current and big shifts. “It’s a heads-up venue. You’ll have bad moments, but the teams who survive those moments will excel. We definitely picked a bad side a bunch of times, but we recognized it and got out. The key is reacting quicker than the next guy.”

Rounding out the top five were White’s YOUREGATTA in fourth and Argentina’s Nicolas Cubria’s ELVIS in fifth, by virtue of winning the last race!

Finally, of the two women’s teams entered, Erica Beck Spencer’s SEA BAGS WOMEN’S SAILING TEAM from Portland, ME was 1st followed by Amy Kubie’s LONESTAR.  For J/24 NA race results and regatta information   For more Charleston YC host information a data-flip-widget="flipit" href="https://flipboard.com">Add to Flipboard Magazine.

J/70 RIMETTE Awarded Annapolis NOOD Regatta Overall Champion

J/70 Rimette- John Brim wins overall (Annapolis, MD)- Warm weather, sunny skies and moderate breeze set the stage for a solid day of racing on the Chesapeake Bay for the first day of the Helly Hansen National Offshore One Design (NOOD) Regatta in Annapolis on Friday. All classes on three race courses completed five races to kick off the three-day event.  Then, Saturday dawned with a light northerly breeze fiasco with only a few fleets completing one race.  Sunday dawned with little more promise, giving most fleets a chance for two more races in yet more light northerly winds.

In the end, it was John Brim of Palm Beach, Florida, and his crew on the J/70 RIMETTE that not only scored their first-ever major regatta win in the J/70 class, but also earned the coveted title of Overall Winner at the event.  Here is how it all went down for the three-day event.

J/111s sailing in formation at Annapolis NOODFriday- Gorgeous Southerly and Sun!
With 32 boats registered each, the J/22 and the J/70 fleets were tied for largest of the weekend. The J/22s had an especially competitive roster this year as competitors prepare for their J/22 World Championship in Annapolis in September. The day’s J/22 class leader, Pete Levesque, of Tiverton, Rhode Island, said it’s still anyone’s game.

“The top five are all going fast and, even behind them, there are a bunch of people who are capable of winning races,” he said. “It’s a pretty deep fleet.”

Levesque and his crew on Dusty took a conservative approach to the day, establishing a one-point lead over Jeff Todd’s HOT TODDY, of Annapolis, after five races. Facing an “uphill current and an aggressive fleet,” Levesque wanted to get off the starting line cleanly and avoid taking risks.

“It is my first time back at it in Annapolis in a while and first time sailing in a fleet this size in a while, so I just wanted to tip-toe into it,” he said. “We’ll probably have to take more risks as the weekend goes on.”

J/70 Savasana sailing Annapolis NOODJ/70 class leader John Brim, of Palm Beach, Florida, found success was on the western edge of the course, where, in one race, he and his crew aboard RIMETTE found tide relief and breeze in a pivotal moment on a downwind leg, which resulted in a five-boat recovery that he said was a big factor in his team’s overall lead.

But, the strategy didn’t work in their favor on the last race of the day, when team RIMETTE— already several places deep in the fleet— made its move to the west and watched as the boats sailing straight down the middle of the course gained speed. They held a strong lead most of the day, but that 10th-place finish left them narrowly ahead of class veteran Brian Keane on SAVASANA.

The RIMETTE skipper also found the variable conditions challenging, with shifty winds and a “fair amount of chop” thrown into the mix. He said his crew found it was best to keep sailing through the chop than try to sail around the unavoidable waves. He also credited a brand-new mainsail and “fantastic” trim and tactical work by his crew for team RIMETTE’s first-place standing at the end of day one.

The J/80 fleet’s opening day leader on COURAGEOUS, skipper Gary Panariello, of Sausalito, California, echoed Brim’s analysis of the conditions out on the racecourse.

“Every single race was different,” he said. “All the things we thought would work didn’t, so we just had to pay attention to what was going on during each race. The pressure was better on the west side of the course for most of the day, but by the end of the day, the right side worked just as well as the left. Which is really interesting in Annapolis, because it’s usually a much more one-sided [advantaged] racecourse.”

J/70s sailing off Annapolis NOOD regattaSunday- Light Airs Finale
After the virtual glass-out on Saturday where only the Yellow course managed to complete one race, the rest of the day’s racing for all fleets on all courses was canceled.

Sunday dawned with some promise, with the northerly winds showing a somewhat steady 6-8 kts of breeze.  However, the forecast was for it to die slowly and shift east.  What transpired was nothing like the forecast, with the breeze dying fast and oscillating back and forth from 350 deg to 60 deg across the race course and with huge, spotty wind streaks dropping down to 1-3 kts at times.  To say it was rough and challenging on tacticians and sail trimmers would be an understatement.

Victory didn’t come easily for the J/70 team on RIMETTE. In fact, it all came down to the eighth and final race of the weekend. Heading into it in second place, the crew had difficulty getting off the starting line and then committed a port-starboard foul, for which they had to perform a penalty turn in light air. Fortunately, Rimette’s tactician Taylor Canfield soon made a call that put them on the path to redemption.

“We were mid-fleet after the penalty turn, but our tactician was brilliant,” Brim said. “He saw a breeze and we went hard left. I focused my eyes on the jib and the waves, and the next thing I knew we were lifted to port-tack with fresher breeze. We rounded the mark in second, amazingly.”

From there, third-place NINE sailed by Oivind Lorentzen worked its way between RIMETTE and SAVASANA, which was holding the top spot at the time. Brim’s team finished that race in second, gaining the necessary two points to tie with Brian Keane’s Savasana. The tiebreaker— based on which team has the most first-place race finishes— worked in Brim’s favor, as team RIMETTE had three to SAVASANA’s two.

“Frankly, we were surprised at the whole thing, and delighted,” Brim said, whose crew also included Scott Ewing and Collin Leon. “I’ve sailed in Annapolis many times and it’s always a challenging place, but this weekend was one of the nicest Annapolis regattas I remember.”

J/70 Selkie sailing CorinthiansAs the Helly Hansen Annapolis NOOD’s overall winner, Brim earns a berth in the Helly Hansen NOOD Caribbean Championship Regatta, presented by Sunsail in the British Virgin Islands in October.

Behind the two leaders, it was Lorentzen’s NINE that secured third place, followed by Doug Clark’s POLAR from the US Coast Guard Academy in fourth and Bruno Pasquinelli’s STAMPEDE from Fort Worth, TX in fifth.

Winning the J/70 Corinthians division was Jennifer & Ray Wulff’s JOINT CUSTODY from Annapolis, MD.  Second was Henry Filter’s WILD CHILD, third Tod Sackett’s FM, fourth Jack & Vivien Wallace’s SELKIE, and fifth Mark Hilman’s USA 6.

Like Brim, this was the first Helly Hansen Annapolis NOOD win for Gary Panariello, whose COURAGEOUS team took the top spot in the competitive J/80 fleet, where only two points separate the first and third finishers in the final standings.

J/80 Courage winners- Gary Panariello“This is very typical of J/80 racing,” Panariello said. “It’s usually this tight. All of the people at the top of the fleet are very good. We had a sizable lead going into the day and our goal was just to be in first place when we finished. We weren’t very aggressive about what we did, and we were just able to hang on.”

After a “tough” first race, where Panariello finished well behind the second-place boat in the standings, team COURAGEOUS had one goal in the last race.

“We just needed to stay near Thomas Kopp’s KOPP-OUT no matter where they went on the racecourse,” he said. “And that’s what we did. We followed them around and made sure we didn’t get disconnected from them or let any boats between us.”

Behind the two leaders were John White’s USA 1162 in third, Les Beckwith’s FKA fourth, and Mike Hobson’s MELTEMI in fifth.

J/22s sailing Annapolis NOOD regattaSimilarly, local J/22 class winner Zeke Horowitz and the UNCLE FLUFFY had to face their own challenges today despite starting the day with a strong lead. A bad start during race one landed them in the back of the 32-boat fleet.

“We had a really good comeback in the first race,” Horowitz said. “There was definitely luck involved in that one, no doubt about it. On the final beat, we were out right hard and a big shift with pressure filled in. We probably passed 20 boats or more the last two minutes into the finish. It was one of those moments where you cross the line and you’re like, ‘How did that just happen?’”

The team then had to recover from another bad start in the second race, where they were able to claw their way to first place after rounding the first mark in eleventh. Horowitz said he knew all they needed was to complete the race in the top 10 to maintain their overall position, which made the eventual win even more sweet.

“It was really fun to be able to win the last race in a regatta like this,” he said. “These crews sailed great and really fast, and they’re extremely hard to beat. We’re really fortunate to be in the spot that we are.”

Rounding out the top five places were Jeff Todd’s HOT TODDY in second, Pete Levesque’s DUSTY in third, JR Maxwell’s SCOOBY in fourth and Aden King’s RHYTHMIC PUMPING in fifth place.

J/80 Helly Hansen youth teamFor the six-boat J/24 class, it was yet another class that determined the winner based on a tie-breaker.  Pat Fitzgerald’s RUSH HOUR and Pete Kassal’s SPACEMAN SPIFF each finished with 16 pts each, with countback going to Fitzgerald’s team based on number of 1sts.  Third place wen to Peter Rich’s BUXTON with 20 pts total.

The ten-boat J/30 class saw a repeat winner from last year.  Bob Rutsch’s BEBOP won two races and took three 2nds to comfortably win their class.  They were followed by Doug & Amy Stryker’s TOTALED MAYHEM in second and Ron Anderson’s INSATIABLE in third position.

With a half-dozen boats, the betting was how many races were Jim Sagerholm & Jerry Christofel’s fabled AUNT JEAN were going to win??  In the end, just five in seven races for an easy win with 12 pts total.  The real battle was for the next two spots on the podium.  Trading 2nds and 3rds all weekend, it was ultimately the ABIENTOT crew with skipper Roger Lant that took the silver by one point over Chuck Kohlerman’s team on MEDICINE MAN.

J/105 Bat IV team- Kennedy and crew- 2ndAs the biggest big boat fleet on the Bay, the eighteen-boat J/105 class is always a challenging fleet to race in due to the many class veterans that continue to sharpen the tools of the trade each year.  This time, it was a near (and surprising) “white washing” of the fleet by Cedric Lewis & Fred Salvesen’s MIRAGE, winning five of seven races for a mere total of 16 pts!  Second was the tenacious crew on-board Andrew Kennedy’s BAT IV.  However, speaking of “tenacious”, it was Carl & Scott Gitchell’s TENACIOUS that finished only one point back to take the bronze.

As anticipated, the eight-boat J/111 class was going to be a “shoot-out @ the OK Corral”.  Indeed it was.  With a multitude of champions in the class in attendance, it was not going to be a battle for the faint of J/111 Velocity- Martie Roesch crew- winnersheart.  Multiple gladiators squared off and, in the end, it was local hotshot Martie Roesch’s crew on VELOCITY that avoided the major pitfalls to take the title with a final race win.  Going into the final race, Peter Wagner’s J/111 World Champion SKELETON KEY team had the lead by two points.  So long as Wagner’s crew maintained contact with VELOCITY, with even one boat in between, they won the regatta.  Somehow, it wasn’t so.  Just six points back was Rob Ruhlman’s Cleveland, OH team on their famous SPACEMAN SPIFF. Perhaps the highlight for the J/111 crews was the “huuuuge” fiesta for the “Derby de Mayo” party at Roesch’s house on Saturday evening; after all, racing was canceled at 1:30pm, so the crews had plenty of time to don sombreros, feathered boa hats, and drink whatever moved them- mint juleps or massive pitchers of margaritas!  Sailing photo credits- Paul Todd/ Outside Images  For more Helly Hansen Annapolis MOOD Regatta sailing information a data-flip-widget="flipit" href="https://flipboard.com">Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Classic, Gorgeous Antigua Sailing Week

J/122 sailing Antigua Sailing week (Falmouth Harbour, Antigua)- One hundred and sixteen teams from 37 different countries raced in the 51st edition of Antigua Sailing Week held from April 29 to May 4. Strong trade winds blew all week, delivering classic Caribbean conditions to over 1,000 competitors.

Over 3,000 revelers attended Reggae in the Park, featuring international reggae artist Tarrus Riley and Peter Harrison’s Superyacht SOJANA (a Farr 115 foot ketch) was awarded the coveted Lord Nelson Trophy after a perfect scoreline of seven race wins in CSA 2 (Peter is racing his J/70 SORCHA J in this weekend’s Italian J/70 Cup in Porto Ercole, Italy).

J/122 Liquid sailing Antigua Sailing Week“This is fantastic. It is the second time we have won the Lord Nelson Trophy and I am really thrilled to win it again,” commented Peter Harrison, owner of SOJANA. “We have had beautiful crew work, everybody was really on their game. We had our boat restored three years ago and have new sails and the crew have all done her justice.”

Added SOJANA crew boss Jonny Malbon, “This week has been amazing, with perfect conditions for SOJANA; breezy and lumpy and full-on. We have pushed ourselves and the boat. The crew is very diverse; we have a couple of young guys from the National Sailing Academy of Antigua and professional sailors from all over the world. We broke a few things, but always repaired them. It has been an epic week and the boss is super-happy. This is his favourite regatta, because it’s intense and fun.”

J/30 sailing Antigua Sailing WeekIn the dozen-boat CSA 5 Class, the famous J/122 EL OCASO, sailed by Kym Kapalla, started off slowly with an 8-7-6 and closed fast with a steady 3-3-2-2 to take fourth place with 23 pts net.  Perhaps with a bit more practice beforehand, they may have had a great chance for 2nd or 3rd in their class.  Pamala Baldwin’s J/122 LIQUID suffered a DSQ in their 6th race, hurting their chances for a top five finish.

In the nine-boat CSA 7 Class, David Cullen’s Irish crew aboard his J/109 POCKET ROCKET sailed a solid series to take the bronze.

Finally, in CSA 8 Class, it was Tanner Jone’s Antiguan crew on the J/30 BLUE PETER/ CARIBBEAN ALLIANCE INSURANCE that lost a tie-breaker on 16 pts each for third place on the podium.  Sailing photo credits- Paul Wyeth/ PWPictures.com  For more Antigua Sailing Week sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

J/70 TANGAROA Wins Yachting Cup Overall!

J/70 Tangaroa- winners Yachting Cup San Diego (San Diego, CA)- Seventy-nine teams competed in ten fleets in the 2018 Yachting Cup, held May 5-6 in San Diego, CA. David Hochart’s J/70 team on TANGAROA won the final race to secure their class victory and get recognized as the overall event winner.

Hosted by the San Diego YC, the 2018 Yachting Cup was held from May 4th to 6th off the promontory of Point Loma and in the South Bay southeast of the city of San Diego. The Yachting Cup is one of SDYC’s signature events.  The principal one-design classes in the regatta were J/70s, J/105s, and J/120s. In addition, there were PHRF Offshore handicap classes.

J/70 sailing Yachting Cup San DiegoThe J/70s had a dozen boats racing, with seven races sailed over the two days. Winning was Hochart’s TANGAROA with three bullets in their scoreline and a total of 16 pts next.  Second was Chris Snow’s COOL STORY BRO with 19 pts and third was Jay Janov’s MINOR THREAT with 23 pts.  Rounding out the top five were Curt Johnson’s AVET 2.01 and Jim Murrell’s HUCKLEBERRY in 4th and 5th, respectively.

Nine teams sailed in the challenging J/105 fleet.  While generally a very close battle for the podium, it was anything but this year.  Somehow, Stew Cannon’s crew on J-OK found the “whup-ass” button and hit it hard every race, posting three bullets and tossing a 4th to win with just 12 pts net, 6 pts clear of last year’s winner- Rick Goebel & Donica Ryder’s SANITY.  Third was the duo of Hurlburt & Driscoll on JUICED, J/105s sailing Yachting Cup San Diegolike SANITY, throwing out a last race DSQ to secure their position.  Rounding out the top five were Rich Bergmann’s ZUNI BEAR in 4th and Steve & Lucy Howell’s BLNIK in 5th.

Perhaps the most crushing performance came in the very competitive J/120 fleet.  Talk about a “schooling”, John Laun’s CAPER crew truly achieved one of the most amazing performances ever in the class, winning with all 1sts and having to throw out a 1st to win with only 5 pts! In the meantime, it seems everyone else conceded the win to CAPER while the next three boats spent the weekend trading body blows every race. In the end, second place for three boats was determined by a one point spread and a tie-breaker! It was so tight that it came down to the last race and the last run home to the finish line to determine who-beat-who! Rudolph Hasl’s HASL FEE finished with a 3rd to close with 14 pts total, enough to secure the silver.  However, Chuck Nichol’s CC RIDER crew must certainly feel the pain, as in the last race they dropped from a certain 2nd place to third after posting a 5th in the final race.  That created a tie-breaker on 15 pts each between CC RIDER and Ernie Pennell’s MAD MEN, with Nichol’s taking 3rd on the countback.

In PHRF C Division, it was David Boatner’s J/35 RIVAL that placed 2nd, while Geoff Davis’ J/35 ZFORCE took 4th place- a great show for the venerable J/35 in sunny SD! Sailing photo credits- Bronny Daniels/ JOYSAILING.com  For more Yachting Cup sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

SV Kreuzlingen Leads Swiss J/70 Sailing League

J/70s sailing Swiss Sailing League (Kreuzlingen, Switzerland)- The host club for the second act of the Swiss J/70 Sailing League were not disappointed by the performance of their hometown team- SV Kreuzlingen.  From Friday to Sunday, the “bise” winds blew on the Bodensee Lake between Beaufort 1 to 5 and allowed the Super League teams to sail 42 races for the 12 participating teams from across Switzerland.

The local Bodensee team took advantage of their local knowledge. Bringing home the victory and the series lead was the SV Kreuzlingen crew of Tom Rüegge, Stefan Stäheli, Peter Fritschi and Caroline Tanner-Keller.

The second placed Regattaclub Bodensee (RCB) had a difficult start and was third after the first day. However, the crew found their rhythm and finished their last 7 races with all first and second places. With this amazing performance, the RCB team was able to overtake the Regattaclub Oberhofen (BE) in front of them and work their way up to the leading Kreuzlinger’s. However, the RCB team could never challenge the consistent sailing of SV Kreuzlingen.

J/70 sailing Swiss Sailing LeagueAs a result of the weekend series, the SV Kreuzlingen team has now posted a lofty 1-1 for 2 pts in the series, with three events left for summer 2018.  Sitting in second is RC Bodensee with a 3-2 for 5 pts.  Third is Societe Nautique de Geneve with a 2-6 for 8 pts. They are tied with RC Oberhofen that has a 5-3 for 8 pts.  Then, in provisional fifth place is YC Bielersee with an 8-4 for 12 pts.

The Swiss Sailing Clubs are international leaders in the Sailing Champions League. This year, the sporting level has risen again. The clubs send their best sailors into the regattas and the list of participants reads like a "Who's Who" of Swiss sailing. Olympians, World Champions, European Champions and Swiss Champions in various classes are at the start and want to win the Swiss Sailing League Cup and the Swiss Championship title for their club.  Sailing photo credits- Claudia Somm.  For more Swiss J/70 Sailing League information
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