Friday, October 30, 2020

Youth Sailing Team in Cleveland Raise Record Funds!

 J/34 youth team wins regatta

* "We had #MOREKIDSONSAILBOATS on board, again, on our J/34 IOR KNEE DEEP to raise awareness for kids in sailing and money for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society," remarked Brett Langolf, owner of the boat.

"The all kids crew raised over $27,000 for LLS and were the overall Top Fundraiser Crew! This crew also won the Leukemia Regatta Junior Volunteer of the Year Award, were inducted in the LCR Hall of Fame, won 2nd & 3rd as Individual Overall Fundraisers, and were the bulk of the funding for their home club, Sandusky Sailing Club to win the overall Yacht Club challenge for the Leukemia Cup Regatta! 

This group of kids were leaders on and off the water, displaying elements of critical thinking, problem solving, and communicating to come together for a great cause. 

They aren't done.... they are already scanning the calendar for the next Leukemia Cup Regatta. Any J-Boat owners out their interesting is hosting this group?"  Thanks for contribution from J/34 KNEE DEEP owner Brett Langolf.  Learn more about how to get in involved here:Add to Flipboard Magazine.

J/35 North Star Fleet Keeps Growing!

 J/35 sailors in Michigan

* The North Star Sailing Club in Detroit, Michigan put on another fantastic regatta for the J/35 class on Lake St. Claire.

For four weekends in a row in late fall, the conditions transitioned to something different every weekend before winter takes hold. There were 26 boats registered for the Fall Series, 9 of which were J/35s. Congratulations to Bill Wildner (#1) and his crew on MR BILL'S WILD RIDE. 

All of the J35s were very evenly matched and leads changed often. Bill is a six-time J/35 National Champion, second place went to Dennis Meagher's SNIPE, and in third was Ed Bayer's FALCON. Ed is also a J/35 National Champion four times!

There is a renaissance happening with the J/35 class. We will have twelve J/35s racing in the Fall Series in 2021, and maybe more. The Covid put a wrench in the works this year. Racing in fresh water really helps preserve everything on the boat. The sails keep their integrity because of the lack of salt. A big thank you to the sailors who came in from out of State to participate. Fresh water racing on the Great Lakes in Michigan cannot be bettered. Lake St. Claire is not a Great Lake. Lake St. Claire is 420 square miles of fun sailing. For you ocean sailors take a look on a map, you will be impressed.

The J/35 is one of the most iconic boats ever designed. The J/35 is more iconic to sailors than a '63' 'split window' Corvette is to car buffs. The J/35 class in Michigan continues to grow and our fleet is having a lot of fun, great, spirited sailing amongst our teams. 

J/35 one design sailboat class
After 37 years the J/35 is still a rocket offshore, whether racing handicap or one-design. North Star has attracted over 30 new sailors in the last two years and introduced them to the J/35's. The J/35 sailors at North Star Sail Club would love to show their thanks and appreciation to Rod and Bob Johnstone for their classic.

Thursday, October 29, 2020

J/99 For Sale in Houston, Texas

 J/99 doublehanded boat

J/99 Hull #007 is a well outfitted capable and versatile J/99. ProFurl roller furling jib and code 0. Great B&G Instruments, Fusion Stereo and Speakers, North 3Di Main, 3Di med/hvy jib, 3Di light/med. jib, AirX A2 Asym, Code 0 NPL on roller furler, all safety gear. 

Factory options include: Upgraded interior cushions, 110v Shore Power, 12V DC refrigeration, Additional 100 Amp battery, 2 burner propane stove, Pop Up morning cleats. Instruments include: 3 Triton Mast mounted displays, 2 bulkhead mounted multi-displays, V60 VHF Radio, Nav Station mounted Chart Plotter, Triton, speed, depth, wind, GPS sensors. The blue stripes are a wrap and can be easily removed. New Lower price! Learn more here on J/Net Brokerage

A Hopeful Report from a New J/122 owner

 J/122 sailing offshore- Annapolis, MD- Chesapeake Bay

* "Hello sailing friends in the J/Community! My wife Cindy and I purchased a 2008 J-122 from Cowes, England last fall. We had it shipped here to Annapolis, Maryland and we rehabbed her over the winter 2019 & 2020. We could not wait to go sailing on the Chesapeake Bay. But, like everyone else, we had to put our plans on ice because of the pandemic.

When racing resumed in June/July, we entered Annapolis Yacht Club's Wednesday night races, the AYC Annual regatta, and AYC Labor Day regatta. We took a first in the WNR second series, a first in the AYC annual with two bullets, and a first in the ALC Labor Day regatta with three bullets. All of these were racing under the ORC handicapping system. We have raced a few other events, but due to light wind, we abandoned two of those. The third one was an all-day affair to Solomons, but light-air downwind for 6 hours is not our best point of sail.

We are thrilled with our new boat, and, frankly, we did not see these good results coming so soon.  A great deal of credit to the Johnstone's for their design! And, the rest goes to our amazing crew!" Thanks for this report from Ed Hartman and his wife Cindy!

Awesome J/Fest Southwest Regatta

 J/105s rounding mark

(Houston, Texas)- According to Scott Spurlin, J/Dealer in Texas, "the J/Sailors in Texas needed this event!  The enthusiasm to get out on the water was over the top!  On Friday, the rain was coming down and the gusts were in the 40’s and people still trailered their boats in!  We delayed the start on Saturday to give them time to set up and launch. Then we had a full weekend of racing.  I will always think of this J/Fest as fondly as I remember the very first one!"

J/24 crew sailing J/Fest Houstonq
The J/Fest Southwest Regatta celebrated its 11th Anniversary and proved yet again it was a popular tradition among the J/Boat owners throughout the region with over 70 J/Boats. This 11th edition was a bit more challenging with the current Pandemic conditions. But Lakewood Yacht Club's team rolled out their traditional (and amazing!) red carpet treatment for the 250-plus sailors and made sure the event was fun, while complying with both State of Texas and US Sailing COVID-19 guidelines.

J/70 sailing J/Fest Houston Texas
The two-day, six-race regatta had amazing attendance in every class, including seven J/70s, nine J/105s, five J/ORC boats, twenty-one J/22s, and fifteen J/24s! Many familiar happy faces were seen aboard the boats, overjoyed with being to get together safely and fulfill their wishes to finally sail their first regatta since the advent of the pandemic lockdowns back in March.  

J/70 sailing off Houston, Texas
Perhaps the most surprising outcome of the regatta was the win by Scott Spurlin's team on the J/70 YOLO. Despite the fact it was just a half-dozen boats, the fleet was riddled with National, North American, World Champions and Olympic Medallists! Apparently, it helps to have some "secret sauce" on board in the form of mainsheet trimmer and tactician Reed Baldrige (a National and World Champion sailor).  Scott's team had a remarkably consistent performance, rattling off a 2-2-1-2-3-2 record for a mere 12 pts! Just behind them it was truly a "shoot out at the OK Corral" for the balance of the top five. Taking the silver was Jay Lutz's MOJITO, after compiling an ever-improving performance with finishes of 4-4-2-3-4-1 for 18 pts. The bronze was determined by a tie-breaker at 19 pts each between two World Champion teams. Bruno Pasquinelli's STAMPEDE won the countback over Glenn Darden's HOSS. Taking fifth position was Dov Kivlovitz’s TURBO DUCK. 

J/105 sailing off Houston, Texas
The J/105 class also saw a few duels taking place at the top of the leaderboard.  Winning the regatta by just one point was Ken Horne's FINAL FINAL over Bill Zartler's DEJA VOODOO. Like the J/70s, the bronze medal battle went to the final race and ended up in a tiebreaker at 24 pts each. After the countback, the bronze was awarded to John Bell's KINDERSPIEL 2 over Bill Lackenmacher's RADIANCE. Taking fifth place was Uzi Ozeri's BONBON.

J/22 sailing upwind off Houston, TexasThe huge J/22 fleet was extremely competitive and the battle at the top of the leaderboard raged all weekend-long. How tight was the fleet? Well, the top five were only separated by an anxiety-inducing six points! Like their brothers and sisters in the J/105 and J/70 classes, the showdown for the podium was not determined until the final leg of the final race! Starting off with a blistering 1-2, Larry Wise's crew on LET THE WOOKIE WIN faltered in the next four races, chalking up a 12-6-3-6 for a 30 pts total. Nevertheless, after surviving the onslaught from several National and World Champions crew in the J/22 class, Wise's team held their composure to win with 30 pts- a 5th average, the highest winning average of the regatta! Casey Lambert's crew on BLACKBURN MARINE RACING took the silver with a roller-coaster scoreline of 4-5-3-7-4-9 for 32 pts. Rounding out the podium in a hard-earned bronze medal was Mark Foster's PRESSURE DROP, posting a 10-3-1-4-5-10 for 33 pts (how did you bracket your record with two 10's??). The balance of the top five included Jim Freedman's MISS CONDUCT and Tom Meeh's MEEHEM in fourth and fifth, respectively. 

The only class to see what could only be defined as a "runaway shopping trolley" collecting all podium finishes was Chris Holmes crew on the J/24 BAD MOON. Holmes' team cruised to a 2-3-2-3-2-2 record for 14 pts. A distant second was taken by Gerald Rademaker's YIKES team, followed by Greg Newsome's SIXTY NINE (the sail number of his very old TPI-built J/24!). The rest of the top five saw Rod Favela's PHANTASM in fourth and Graham Gardner's SURPRISE in fifth position. 

J/121 sailing offshore
Finally, the big offshore boats all sailed in the J/ORC class. Winning was Forbes Durdin's J/121 BEAR, closing the last four races with all bullets! Mark Funk's J/27 USA 23 was second and Bill Sutton’s fire-engine red J/35 LEADING EDGE. The rest of the top five included Dave Christenson's J/109 AIRBORNE in 4th and Albrecht Goethe's J/46 HAMBURG II (a beautiful "upgrade" from his former J/109 by the same name!). 

Enjoy the sailing highlights video on YouTube produced by Stuart Lindow/ Pelican Productions   Enjoy the sailing photos on Flickr   For more J/Fest Southwest sailing information

J/11S Silvers Panhellenic Doublehanded Cup

 J/111 sailing offshore

(Kallithea, Athens, Greece)- The 1st Panhellenic Sailing Cup 2020 (Double Handed), organized by the Nautical Club SEANATK (Kallithea) in collaboration with the Offshore Committee of EIO, was held with great success on the weekend of October 17 & 18.

This demanding race was designed to simulate the new Olympic offshore doublehanded sailing competition that will take place at the French Olympics in 2024 with a mixed crew of two people. The Panhellenic Cup consisted of a race lasting about 30 hours, on a route of 140 nautical miles in the Saronic Gulf and was the first event of such kind in Greece (perhaps even the Mediterranean). A total of eighteen offshore sailboats took part, most of them with a high standard of racing equipment and with very capable crews.

J/111 doublehanded boat
The start was on Saturday at 10:00am off the Nautical Marina of Kallithea, with partly cloudy skies and moderate westerly wind (Punenti). The fleet set sail with several crossings of the islands in the Saronic Gulf. After that, the boats headed to the next turning mark- known locally as "George" - at a distance of 36.0nm from the start.

The first night found the first boats in N. Modi (Poros) heading to N. Fleves. The northwest wind strengthened to 5+ Beaufort and the fastest boats exceeded 10 knots boatspeed quite easily. After rounding Fleves-Modi, the fleet headed to Faliro to pass through the virtual "gate". 

The first boats passed the virtual "gate" at 4:00 AM in the early hours of Sunday, for the last leg of the race Faliro-Fleves-Faliro (23.0 nm). In this coastal part, the intensity of the wind dropped a lot, with the result that the boats slowed down and the crews followed different tactics.

In the end, the J/11S AIOLIA, sailed by the dynamic duo of Spyros Papantoniou & Lefteris Panodimos, managed to pull off a silver medal winning performance!

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Germans Win SAILING Champions League- Again!

 J/70s sailing off Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy

(Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy)- Commodore Mike Illbruck of Yacht Club Costa Smeralda could not have been more pleased and excited about how his club handled the 2020 edition of the AUDI SAILING Champions League finale. As an active J/70 sailor himself racing PINTA, Mike was proud to see his team at YC Costa Smeralda provide the red-carpet treatment for the twenty-seven teams representing thirteen nations meeting in Porto Cervo for the final leg of the circuit. 

Sailing a fleet of a dozen matched J/70 one-design class sailboats from the YC Costa Smeralda, the teams were blessed with four straight days of epic, champagne sailing conditions- sunny, partly cloudy, 10 to 25 knots of mistral conditions with winds blowing from the northwest offshore, making for flat water conditions. The planned eighteen flights were completed for the four-day event, for a total of 72 races! 

The surprise winner for the event was yet another leading Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga team- the Segel-und Motorboot Club Überlingen Team that sail on the spectacular Lake Constance (bordered by Germany, Austria, and Italy). Here are the daily reports on how it all went down in this year's exciting, thrill-a-minute finale. 

J/70s sailboat off Sardinia, Italy
Day One
Two flights were completed on day one for a total 8 races run. Currently tied for points and in the lead was the familiar German crew from Norddeutscher Regatta Verein, themselves German Sailing League champions more than once. The surprise team in the number two spot on the leaderboard was the Åländska Segelsällskape Team from Finland. Third place for the day was the Swiss team Seglervereinigung Kreuzlingen.

Måns Lundberg, from Åländska Segelsällskapet commented, “racing in Costa Smeralda is always great for us! Our primary objective is to improve on our results that our Club has obtained in the past editions of this event.”

Stefan Seger, from the Regattaclub Oberhofen said, “in this first day the wind direction was very shifty, so it was hard for all of the teams that are participating. At any rate it’s always a pleasure to meet again here.”

J/70s sailing off Sardinia, Italy
Day Two
The second day of racing was intense for the twenty-seven teams! There were seventeen races run for a total of four flights completed...exhausting for the Race Committee, the Jury boats, and the race teams! The races got underway punctually at 10AM in south westerly winds at 20-22 knots and gusts at up to 30 knots. Racing was in the Golfo del Pevero and ended at 5PM. After seven hours on the water!

At the end of the day’s racing the Spanish team from the Club Náutico Arrecife was just one point ahead of the German team from the Segel- und Motorboot Club Überlingen, who raced up the standings to place second for the series. The Italian team from Aeronautica Militare also had a great day and rose to third place.

Ricardo Terrades, from the Club Náutico Arrecife had these words, “fundamentally, we want to sail fast and have fun. Our objective is to qualify for the final series, so we’ll try to do our best to hang on to the position we’re currently in. We hope that in the upcoming two days we’ll be sailing in similar conditions, our team loves windy weather!”

German J/70 Sailing champion league winners
Day Three
The third day saw the weather Gods bless the sailors with yet another perfect combination of racing conditions with westerly, very shifty, very puffy winds that ranged from 18-22 knots. The action was intense again and a total of 21 races were run to complete five flights. 

Aeronautica Militare has continued to work its way up the scoreboard. After a first race where the team finished fourth, they won three races and placed second once. As a result, they are currently in the lead in the provisional results. Swiss teams from the Regattaclub Oberhofen and the Seglervereinigung Kreuzlingen are in second and third place respectively after having placed consistently well today.  

Niccoló Bertola, from Aeronautica Militare, commented on their strong performance, “we really weren’t expecting to get such good results! Actually, we were a little worried because this year we never had the chance to sail using the National Sailing League format and we know that training is the most important thing in this kind of regatta. So, we’re really happy so far! Tomorrow the conditions should be a bit different with lighter air, but we’ll be ready.”  

After the racing there was a presentation in Piazza Azzurra of the survey on the quality of Sardinia’s waters that Oristano’s CNR is conducting with the support of the One Ocean Foundation. Immediately afterwards the scientific expedition that Ocean Scientific (partner of the OOF) is conducting in the Med was also presented.  

J/70s sailing offshore..
Day 4 Finale- Wash, Rinse, Repeat
It was yet another perfect day of racing for the finale. Racing started punctually at 10AM with more amazing mistral winds from the west from 12-15 knots. Three more flights were held bringing the event’s total to fourteen completed flights and 56 races. At the end of all of the flights the teams that finished in the top four positions qualified for the final series. Those teams were Aeronautica Militare (Italy), Segel-und Motorboot Club Überlingen (Germany), Seglervereinigung Kreuzlingen (Germany) and Akhmat National Sailing Team (Russia).  

After a mixed bag of results in the previous days of racing, the German Segel-und Motorboot Club Überlingen Team stayed concentrated and had their best day. With two wins out of four races they were crowned champions of the SAILING Champions League 2020 for their first time. The Italian team from Aeronautica Militare finished second and taking the bronze on the podium was the Swiss team from Seglervereinigung Kreuzlingen. 

Michael Zittlau, skipper of the Segel-und Motorboot Club Überlingen team, commented, “I still can’t believe that we have won the SAILING Champions League. It’s incredible, we’re from a small Club on Lake Constance in Germany and we came here thinking that we might manage to finish in the top ten at best. We were sailing against some top-level teams. In the final event we could barely keep up, but in the end, we won, and it feels fantastic!”

Michael Illbruck, Commodore of the YCCS, had these comments during the award ceremony held on the terrace at YCCS, “in four days we have seen all kinds of weather conditions, the teams sailed in gusts up to 30 knots. I have to say that it has been a real challenge for the twenty-seven teams that have participated! Events like these embody the fundamental values of sailing like sporting spirit, competitiveness, and a sense of belonging with one’s club. We hope to welcome many teams again next year here in Porto Cervo!”  For more SAILING Champions League regatta information

EMOTICON Triumphs in J/109 Fall Classic


J/109 sailing offshore
(Stamford, CT)- In a year of regatta cancellations, the Long Island Sound J/109 Fleet kept October 17-18 on the calendar with the hopes that they could finally do some one-design racing in 2020. For eight dedicated crews, the Stamford Yacht Club delivered an excellent event for the second annual Fleet 10 Fall Classic!

Saturday’s racing was in a shifty northwest breeze of 10-18 knots. All day, the game was to connect the puffs and minimize the damage when a shift did not go your way, or you were hit with an auto-tack (or auto-gybe).  JR Rechtschaffer’s EMOTICON leveraged its local knowledge from a summer of sailing in Stamford and started strong with a 1-1 in the first two races. With four races in the books, EMOTICON held the Day 1 lead with Bud Rogers’ BIG BOAT and Trevor Roach’s INCENDIARY right behind. After racing, the warmer weather permitted the fleet to have a socially distanced lawn party, a rarity for 2020.

J/109s Long Island Sound starting line
On Sunday, the wind shifted to the east, then southeast. The Race Committee kept the fleet on time and completed another three races in 8-14 knots of breeze. What was forecast to be a consistent breeze turned out to have huge oscillations that kept the fleet on its toes. Several boats went from hero-to-zero, or zero-to-hero, in a matter of minutes. EMOTICON worked hard to overcome a missed shift (or four) and pulled out a 1-2-3 on the final day, and with 14 total points, won the regatta. BIG BOAT and INCENDIARY tied with 16 total points, with BIG BOAT winning the tie-breaker on countback. Rounding out the top five were John Greifzu's GROWTH SPURT and Greg Imbruce's JOYRIDE in 4th and 5th, respectively.   Sailing photo credits- Rick Bannerot/ Ontheflyphoto.netAdd to Flipboard Magazine.

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

J/111 Key West Winter Series Announcement!

 J/111s sailing off Key West

(Key West, FL)- The inaugural 2021 Key West Winter Series will take place from January 16-18 and then March 5-7, and if you want to go, you need a J/111! Our hats off to Ryan and Rob Ruhlman and the entire team at SAILING INC (with J/Dealerships in Ohio and South Carolina) for pulling this together. Six boats are already registered and several more expected. Below is the excerpt from the Scuttlebutt Sailing article between Rob Ruhlman of SAILING INC, Karl Felger Mayor of Key West, and Scuttlebutt's Craig Leweck.

When the difficult decision was made not to hold Key West Race Week in January 2018, it was a harsh blow to those who relied on its weather and weirdness during the middle of winter. But it’s hard to forget the roosters, ruckus nightlife, Mount Gay Rum, and key lime everything. So, it’s southbound again for the inaugural Key West Winter Series powered by Sailing Inc. With two events planned in 2021 for January 16-18 and March 5-7, we check in with some of the instigators for an update.

Craig: Where did the idea come from?
Rob: Key West Race Week had an epic 30 year run and being part of nearly every one of those years made it more than an annual event but a way of life. It was what January was dedicated to every year. The opportunity to reignite that flame, albeit on a much smaller scale, is worth pursuing in the hope that when properly fanned and fed the fire will once again burn brightly. The J/111 class has gotten together to organize an event this year and with the support we have and a little bit of luck, we can use this as a starting point for bigger and better events going forward.

J/111 sailing off Key West
Craig: Why Key West and not somewhere else?
Ryan: Key West is a signature destination in the United States, an honest-to-God tropical paradise. The opportunity to race on blue water, experience the island culture, and reconnect with our friends during the cold winter months is just too good to pass up.

Craig: Key West had become less accommodating when Key West Race Week ended. Has that changed?
Karl: The City of Key West has graciously signed off on the event, and we’re going to have a lot of help from our friends and sponsors. The majority of the organized activity will be on-the-water, with our social gatherings leveraging some of the best spots in Key West. We appreciate the City of Key West’s cooperation and are happy to help support the local community and economy.

Craig:  There is no infrastructure in Key West... how do you pull this off?
Karl: Our goal is to provide a grand prix racing experience, while planting the seeds for the future. Our focus is on offering multiple great races each day over the two-weekend format, leveraging resources provided by the J/111 owners, and with the help of a world class PRO. We have secured the services of a full-service marina, allowing the fleet a venue to launch, haul-out, and store their boat between two events. Boat owners then have an option for dockage at any marina of their choosing. Finally, something to look forward to! Pack your bags and we’ll see you at the Green Parrot!!  For more J/111 Winter Series sailing informationAdd to Flipboard Magazine.

Monday, October 26, 2020

J/Crews Garner Silver @ Rolex Middle Sea Race

 J/109 off starting line of Rolex Middle Sea Race off Malta


(Gzira, Malta)- The 41st edition of the Rolex Middle Sea Race that started on October 17th will go down in history as one of the longest on record and replete with stories of "stop & go" driving. The Royal Malta Yacht Club (RMYC) was grateful they could host a fleet of fifty boats and have them race the famously spectacular 606nm course around the volcanic island of Sicily in the Mediterranean.

Sailing Straits of Messina off Italy 
Principal Race Officer Peter Dimech basically summed up the race experience in his pre-race commentary, “the north west breeze will get them to Capo Passero on the southeast corner of Sicily on Saturday evening or night. Then, they may have a problem as the wind is set to die overnight.” No truer words could have described what basically happened in the entire race. The Straits of Messina turned into a giant wind hole. And just about every island mark the fleet went around produced even more wind holes.

Rolex Middle Sea race starting line
Sailing in IRC 4 Class, Russian Alexey Moskvin's J/122E BURAN sailed an amazing race despite the anxiety-prone sailing conditions.  This experienced Russian offshore sailing team took the silver in their class, missing the gold by a mere one hour after five days of sailing!

J/109 sailing Rolex Middle Sea Race
Winning ORC 6 Class was the J/109 JARHEAD entered by the Jarhead Youth Foundation and skippered by Lloyd Hamilton. It was a stunning win for this youth team, taking their class by a huge margin and winning by 3+ hours corrected time. 

In the IRC 6 Class, the J/109 class reigned supreme, taking three of the top six spots. Italian Leonardo Petti on his J/109 CHESTRESS took the silver, while their colleagues JUBILEE (the French duo of Boess & Bordas) and JARHEAD youth team took 5th and 6th in class, respectively. 

J/109 sailing Rolex Middle Sea Race
In the IRC Doublehanded Class, Gerald Boess and Jonathan Bordas’ J/109 JUBILEE took home the John Illingworth Trophy for first on corrected time. Gerald from Austria & Jonathan from France met on the 2013-14 Clipper Round the World Race. 

Jonathan said: “The leg from Messina to Stromboli went very well for us and was a key component in our performance, we went to the right and got the lift. Racing with other boats fully crewed was also an advantage, especially the great sailors on Hakuna Matata.” 

J/122 sailing off Lampedusa sunset
Gerald commented: “Preparation is very important, especially sailing double handed. Everything from stowing the provisions on the boat to organizing a watch system. You also need to be thinking ahead about what is coming. Trust in one another is also very important, as you can have proper sleep during the race.”  For more Rolex Middle Sea Race sailing informationAdd to Flipboard Magazine.

J/121 KAZI Japan Review

J/121 KAZI Japan sailboat review(Tokyo, Japan)- The famous Japanese boating magazine KAZI has always been known as a leader in the yachting world for their in-depth reviews of various sailboats. Remarkably, KAZI was one of the first reviewers of the revolutionary J/24 back in 1977 when both J/Boats co-founders, Bob and Rod Johnstone, were sailing in the famous Storm Trysail Club Block Island Race Week. 

Here is the approximate translation of KAZI's review of the J/121 offshore speedster in their most recent issue. Here is the introduction.

A flagship model aimed as a powerful open sea racer from J/Boats

Debuted as a family racer-cruiser in 1977, the J/24 became the world's largest-ranked one-design keelboat in the world.  And, 40 years later, J/Boats latest offshore creation- the J/121- sets the stage for a new classic offshore racer for the Atlantic Ocean, the Pacific Ocean, and the Sea of Japan.

The New J/21 Offshore Speedster
This new boat is positioned as the flagship model of J/Boats' offshore performance range of sailboats. While fully compatible with fully-crewed inshore races around the buoys, the big theme is to win offshore distance races with a small crew. 

Alan Johnstone, who is in charge of designing the recent line of J/Boats, studied the data of the weather conditions of prestigious offshore races around the world- over 4,100 nm of race tracks- such as Newport Bermuda Race, Transpac Race, Fastnet Race, Cabo San Lucas Race, RORC 600 Race, Sydney to Hobart Race, and the Mackinac Races in the American Midwest.  As a result, it was determined that the ratio of windward, reaching, and downwind sailing was 25%, 50%, and 25%, respectively. That design specification was incorporated into the design of the J/121 hull and rig."  For more J/121 offshore speedster sailing information.Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Sunday, October 25, 2020

J/125 Back to the Future Review by Sailing Anarchy

 J/125 sailboat review


The 41-foot J/125 is as close to high performance big-boat sailing one can find in a boat that’s manageable (yes, even with spinnaker) by two or three people. J/125 is like a street-legal Indy 500 car that’s easier to drive than the family sedan. Joy in ownership (and investment) is a function of time spent sailing. Time sailing depends on how easy it is to be off “on the spur of the moment” inspired by a beautiful day without having to organize 8-10 crew.  Thanks to Jason Andrews for the J/125 at sea footage
Watch the Sailing Anarchy J/125 review hereAdd to Flipboard Magazine.

Australian J/99 Continues Doublehanded Success!

 Australian J/99 sailing doublehanded

(Sydney Harbour, Australia)- The Australian J/99 JEDI proves again how much fun you can have racing two-up against significantly bigger boats up to 48ft, and some with 12 or more crew, even in gnarly offshore conditions. Read on about a woman's perspective sailing in the doublehanded Olympic-like format. Thanks to Sandra Entwistle for her report.

"We’ve been practicing two-handed racing in our J/99 while joining in with fully-crewed fleet from the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club (RPAYC) Short Offshore Point Score (SOPS) series.  While Ray and I have sailed together for many years, we haven’t seriously raced two-handed since 2008 when we owned our J/109 Sweet Chariot.  

Rather than putting together a story from last weekend’s SOPS race, I thought I’d share my thoughts on preparing for and racing two-up.  By no means am I a professional sailor or have any aspiration to enter the Olympics, I’m just keen to get out there and enjoy sailing.  The J/99 is perfect for us as she can be easily sailed by two, large enough to race fully crewed plus has enough creature comforts down below for some family cruising.

J/99 offshore doublehanded speedster
Actually, in all honesty, I prefer racing two-up as I get to do a bit of everything – from tactics to jib trim to kite trim to steering and all the tasks to make that happen. Paradoxically, I find it less stressful with just two on board, the reason being that we ensure we are organized and prepared for what’s going to happen next, I know what Ray is going to do and vice versa.

In relation to racing 2-up last weekend, the RPAYC SOPS races start at the entrance of Pittwater and head offshore.  This week’s race was up to a mark laid off First Point, starboard rounding and back into Pittwater.  Our J/99 is the smallest boat in the fleet by far, with most of the fleet in the 40-50ft range, it was quite funny listening to each of the yachts call in with their huge crew numbers prior to the start (some with a dozen crew or more) and then little JEDI just 2-up. The forecast was 10-15kn NE and building to 20-25kn NE later in the day.  The seas were a confused mess as we had a strong southerly the day prior then wind over tide – the waves were quite big and random with no backs.  

Prior to the start we were undecided on whether to use the J4 due to the building forecast or the J2 due to the lumpy seas and actual wind which was about 12kn.  We hooked up the J2, but typically about 5 mins before the start the wind picked up and we should have used the J4.  With no time to change jibs we put a reef in the main and the J/99 was perfectly balanced for the beat.  She was exceptionally dry even as we came pounding off the waves, a real credit to J/Boats designer Alan Johnstone.  We chose to use hanks on our jibs as it means the jibs can be easily hoisted and dropped without the need to go on the bow.  Others prefer furlers.  Another option we are seeing more of are reefing jibs, and if we had one, we would have made use of it.

The positioning of the winches makes the J/99 a cinch to tack on my own.  I cross sheet the jib sheets so it can be trimmed from the high side, plus the J/99 has powerful in-haulers and jib cars so is super easy to power up/ depower the jib.  Ray has the backstay, main traveler, main sheet and fine tune (and tiller!) all to hand, he calls the tack and around we go.  In the gusts Ray was mostly just playing the traveler and backstay while helming. There is lots of purchase so is very manageable.

After nearly 2 hours upwind we neared the top mark, shook out the reef and prepared for the kite run – now the fun would start!   Normally as we approach the top mark, I would rig the kite during the last tack in, but the seas were so rough that for safety we decided to wait until we rounded.  So, around the mark we went, I eased the jib sheet, grabbed the kite, ran forward and hooked it all up.  As part of our prep, we had the sheets, tack line and halyard ready on the starboard side and all to hand.  Pulled the tack of the kite to the end of the sprit, Ray had the kite sheet loaded ready, hoisted the kite and I raced back to grab the kite sheet.  We immediately got a gust and scooted down the swell doing about 17 kts – woo hoo!  The J/99 is so stiff and balanced, at no time were we out of control or concerned. Speed is your friend when going downwind as there is less sheet loading. I cross-sheeted the kite sheet to trim from the high side (the primary winches are set slightly aft on the J/99 so can also easily be reached by the helmsman if needed).  The jib was still up, so I released the halyard from the clutch which dropped easily on hanks.  With hindsight, we could have left the jib up and will practice with that another day.

The ride back to Pittwater was a real joy, just surfing the swell and having a blast with dolphins playing by our side.  The vang is led aft to both sides of the cabin top so can be reached while trimming the kite if needed.  Gybing an asymmetric kite is simple, just let one sheet off and pull on the other – no need to go on the bow.  Ray times the turn in co-ordination with me pulling on the new sheet.

The next challenge was to find the finish boat and plan for the kite drop.  The finish boat was quite close in to the shore which didn’t leave much room for a bear away to drop the kite.  Again, we planned ahead and decided to drop the kite about 150m early to ensure we would have the room to not hit Australia! LOL!  We opted for a letterbox drop where the kite is dropped between the mainsail and boom and down the main hatch. That technique is by far the safest, easiest spinnaker drop for any shorthanded sailing team. 

All in all, we had a great day and finished 2nd ORC in Div 2 and 3rd ORC overall combined fleets.  We were really pleased with the result given the seaway, size of the competition and against fully crewed boats, the J/99 punches way above her weight!

In summary, the points to remember are to plan ahead, be prepared and communication.  Safety always comes first; we always wear our lifejackets offshore and have the other safety equipment all to hand and ready to deploy.  Being a husband and wife team, the two rules we stick by which would apply to any two-handed team is that any mistake is a shared mistake (for example a bad call on tactics) and what happens on the water stays on the water!  Two-handed racing is a lot of fun, so give it a go!"  Thanks for this contribution by Sandra Entwistle. Sailing photo credits- Rob at RPAYC.

J/100 Amazing Grace For Sale

 J/100 sailboat for sale- brokerage yacht for sale

The elegant "Amazing Grace" is the most recently re-fitted and upgraded J/100 on the market. The J/100 is proven both as a daysailer and for inshore racing. Now based in Falmouth, Maine, Amazing Grace was originally a freshwater boat until purchased and re-fitted as a dual-purpose sailboat in 2017. Her current owner is a highly experienced and successful cruising and racing sailor who knows how to keep a boat in top condition. However, due to a change in family circumstances, she has been used very little since being re-fitted and raced only once (a short club race that she won handily even without her new race sails). Here is a chance to own a true "gold-plater", a gorgeous example of the coveted J/100 daysailer.Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Saturday, October 24, 2020

J/88 Eclipses Midsummer Solo Challenge

 J/88 sailing singlehanded

(Marstrand, Sweden)- Scandinavian sailors were recently treated to the annual Midsummer Solo Challenge, an overnight race for singlehanded sailors in an around the famous, picturesque, archipelagos of Sweden on the Baltic Sea.  

The purpose of Midsummer Solo challenge is to have a great time together with other solo enthusiasts with a strong focus on the social part (not this year for Covid-19 reasons). And, we hope that all participants get to expand their comfort zone and enjoy fun sailing. To remove as much as possible of the competitive aspect of the race, we play by the following basic rules:
  • Colregs are used, not racing rules
  • Boats are divided into different classes based on hull length
  • No handicap system (apart from hull length)
  • No prize giving ceremony, just a t-shirt & beer, plus bragging rights
This year, more than 100 boats had signed up, including boats from other countries such as Norway, Denmark, Germany, Poland, and the Netherlands. However, when Covid-19 struck, the Swedish Sailing Federation made the decision that only boats from the local area were allowed to participate in any sailing events. In the end there were fifty-nine boats at the starting line.

Midsummer Solo Challenge courseThe course is 123.0 NM and has only 4 marks, all port roundings. It goes through the most beautiful parts of the Swedish archipelago during daytime and when the night comes you’ll be sailing on open water.

Check out this video from last year’s event to see how awesome it is, it is truly a must see.

Start to Mark 1 @ Lysekil
Before the start, most sailors decided to play it safe. The forecast was reaching in 15-18 knots of wind with gusts hitting 30 knots. Most boats started with full main and the big jibs. While "sail crossover" charts indicated that Code Zero's would have been the weapon of choice, very few bothered to try it. In fact, a number of boats had the first reef in their mainsails. Once past the opening of the Marstrand fjord, a few boats did hoist and unfurl the Code Zero's- like J88.SE sailed by Jonas Dyberg. Gusts up to 25 knots from TWA 100-110 hit and the boat really took off.

Approaching Gullholmen the wind angle became tighter and was now around TWA 70 so the Code Zero had to be furled. Once past Gullhomen, the wind shifted, and it was full upwind all the way to Mark 1 but there was never a need to tack. Just before Mark 1, the gusts were hitting close to 30 knots, but the boat was still fully manageable under the jib and reefed main, still no drama.

J/88 sailing singlehanded off Marstrand, Sweden
Mark 1 to Mark 2
From Lysekil to Smögen some boats ran with jibs or Code Zero. The wind was shifting quite a lot, wind strength was around 15 – 20 knots and the gusts was close to 30 knots. The TWA was anything from 95 to 135 degrees.

From Smögen to Fjällbacka it was tight reaching, steady winds of around 20 knots gusting 30. Just after Smögen, the leader of 25-30 ft class Dyberg in his J/88. 

sunset going offshore in Midsummer Solo Challenge, Marstrand, Sweden
Mark 2 to Mark 3
Going from Mark 2 to Mark 3 was pure pleasure for most sailors. Many deployed their Code Zero's and the J/88 was cruising along at 7 to 11 knots, depending on the conditions for wind angle and breeze.

midnight twilight all day long sailing offshore
Mark 3 to Mark 4
This was a long leg, about 56.0 NM. Unfortunately, the wind angle was too tight for the Code 0, the TWA was anywhere from 65 to 90 degrees and the windspeed was anywhere from 11 to 22 knots with a few gusts of 30 knots. Back to full main and jib-only. 

Marstrand, Sweden fort at harbor entrance, Sweden
Mark 4 to Finish
As it was a northernly current, most skippers decided to stick to port tack to get maximum lift from the current and head towards shore. Once you got out of the current, it was time to tack short-tack into shore to the finish line past the Marstrand Fort. 

J/88 sailboat J88.SE sailing off Marstrand, Sweden
In the end, the J/88 named J88.SE, owned by Jonas Dyberg won the 25 to 30 ft Class and was 14th overall in a fleet of 52 boats...only a handful of 34 to 45 ft boats beating him boat-for-boat...all more than 6 feet longer!

"It was a “super-fast” race this year since we had strong winds from ashore and therefore beam reach most of the race. I could not use any of my kites," commented Dyberg.  

Midsummer Solo Challenge with J/88 in 2019
Peter Gustafsson, who normally would sail J/111 BLUR in this race took some pictures you find them here on Facebook.   There is also a nice sailing video sequence of my J/88 here.  One of my own movie sequences can be found here.  The highlights video from the race done by the organizer/sponsor you can see here.  For more Midsummer Solo Challenge sailing information.

J/88 transom-rudder autopilot self-steering system
Check out this very cool, transom-hung J/88 rudder autopilot install!
According to Jonas, "inside the boat the drive unit is a Simrad DD15 (I think this is a Jefa unit but just Simrad branded). And, the control unit is a Raymarine ACU 200 with P70 control panels. I also added a wireless Raymarine S100 remote control, but do not use it as much as planned because it has limited function compared to the P70 panels. This setup is a life-saver for single or double-handed sailing- a fantastic performer!"Add to Flipboard Magazine.