Saturday, June 23, 2018

Ullman Sails Long Beach Race Week Preview

J/120s sailing off Long Beach (Long Beach, CA)- Having one of its best turnouts in years is the annual Ullman Sails Long Beach Race Week, hosted by Alamitos Bay and Long Beach YC’s.  With three race areas to manage, the club’s PRO’s have their hands full with large dinghy classes, one-design keelboats (J/70s and J/120s) and large PHRF handicap classes.

At this time of year, just about anything goes; from the classic “June Gloom” of early morning fog, ultimately burning off to provide decent sailing conditions in the local seabreeze, or the brisk “Santa Ana” conditions that whistle in from the northeast dry and hot and blowing dogs off chains- often well into the 20-30 kts range.  To date, the forecast looks positively like Long Beach Chamber of Commerce conditions- sunny, moderate 6-12 kts winds from the SSE.

J/120 Jim sailing Long Beach, CALooking forward to classic SoCal weather will be the half-dozen boat J/120 class.  The usual suspects will be in attendance from the region. As was the case for the earlier San Diego NOOD Regatta, this class can be hard to handicap since they are all well-prepared, with good sails, and the only variables seem to be trimmers and tacticians!  At San Diego, John Laun’s CAPER set the pace early, fast, and never relinquished their lead.  Similarly, Chuck Nichols’ CC RIDER challenged them but could only manage 2nd place.  Third was Ernie Pennell’s MAD MEN.  Planning on upsetting that apple cart will be John Snook’s JIM, Tim Hogan’s SHAMROCK, and Rudy Hasl’s HASL FREE.

J/70s sailing off Long Beach, CAThe J/70s from across California have showed up “en masse”, with twenty-nine boats on the starting line from as far afield as Valle de Bravo, Mexico; San Francisco, CA; Puerto Vallarta, Mexico; and even Arizona YC in Arizona!  The entire top five from the San Diego NOODs will be striving to maintain their performance.  Winning was Bennet Greenwald’s PERSEVERANCE, 2nd was Chris Snow’s/ Jeff Brigden’s COOL STORY BRO, 3rd was Jeff Janov’s MINOR THREAT, 4th Chris Raab’s SUGOI, and 5th Fabian Gomez-Ibarra’s VAGAZO from Mexico.

Looming like a raptor ready to pounce on a kill are several top teams that have notable sailors on board that were not sailing the SD NOOD event.  For starters, there is West Coast J/70 Champion Bruce Golison on MIDLIFE CRISIS, then there’s Argyle Campbell (world famous sailor from Newport Harbor YC that needs no introduction), and, finally, down from San Francisco is Chris Kostanecki’s JENNIFER (a top 3 contender J/111 sailing off Long Beach, CAat the 2016 J/70 Worlds on the Bay).  Fun and games it will be to see how the dust settles after the long weekend in this class!

In the PHRF handicap world, we find Doug & Jack Jorgensen’s J/111 PICOSA racing in PHRF B class.  Then, in PHRF D class there are three J/105s (Scott McDaniel’s OFF THE PORCH, Juan Lois’ ROCINANTE, & Bill Quealy’s J-RABBIT SLIM), Heinz Butner’s J/109 RAPTOR, and David Boatner’s J/35 RIVAL.  In the PHRF Random Leg C class is Paul Stemier’s J/44 PATRIOT, as well as Seth Hall’s J/124 MARISOL. Sailing PHRF Random Leg D class will be Jack Mayer’s J/109 ZEPHYR.  Sailing photo credits- Erin Rustigian and  For more Ullman Sails Long Beach Race Week sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.