Tuesday, November 21, 2017

European Winter Boat Show Time!

J/121 offshore speedster off Newport
On display, latest J/Cruisers and J/Racers!
(Newport, RI)- With the holidays arriving over the next few weeks, now is the time to be thinking about visiting very cool cities in Europe and checking out some of the latest thinking from the J/Design team!

SALON NAUTIC- Paris, France
Starting in the first week of December, from December 2nd to 10th, 2017, J/Composites will have on display in their booth (Pavilion 1/ Stand 1-G-35) the amazingly fast and competitive J/112E Grand Prix- the latest sport-cruiser from the J/Boats design team.  This latest evolution of the very fast J/112 hull is the one that eclipsed a number of regattas in Europe this past season and is currently running away with the overall lead in IRC 1 class in the famous Hamble Winter series.  Learn more what makes her so fast and so incredibly comfortable at the same time, her finely appointed interior is an eye-opener!  For more Salon Nautic Paris show & ticket information  For more J/112E sport cruiser information

J/112E sport cruiserBOOT DUSSELDORF- Dusseldorf, Germany
At the end of January, from January 20th to 28th, 2018, J/Composites and J/European dealers will have on display the J/97E, the J/112E, and the new J/121 offshore speedster at their booth (Hall- 15 / Stand- B21).  In addition to the J/112E sport cruiser, her smaller sistership, the J/97E will amaze you with her new spacious cockpit (about as large as the 112E’s), large diameter wheel for finger-tip steering response, and her luxurious, open, airy interior that will keep you family and friends coming back for more après-sailing parties on your mini-yacht!   For more J/97E sport cruiser information

Then, be one of the first in Europe to see first-hand the new J/121 offshore speedster- one of the most innovative offshore racing yachts ever in the famous line of J/performance yachts. Her rakish looks, her enormous cockpit, the twin carbon wheels, the novel water-ballast system, all evoke a feeling of “Performance & Speed!”

In fact, on her last offshore voyage from Annapolis to Newport, double-handed by two experienced offshore sailors, she exceeded 18 kts quite easily with her full main and A4 asymmetric spinnaker in up to 23 kts of wind- and she was averaging 14 kts, that’s cruising!   Sailing photo credits- Paul Todd/ Outside Images.com.  For more J/121 offshore speedster information  For more BOOT Dusseldorf show & ticket information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Monday, November 20, 2017

SAIL MAINE Crowned Mallory Cup Champion!

J/70 mallory cup winners (St Petersburg, FL)- The action was fast and furious on Tampa Bay this past week. Twelve teams in J/70s representing their respective Regional Sailing Associations (RSA) across America enjoyed the speedy and highly entertaining racing format, as well as the spectacular weather and racing conditions at the 2017 U.S. Adult Sailing Championship, hosted by St. Petersburg Yacht Club.

Sailors enjoyed a variety of conditions throughout the week, including light air and sunshine to big breeze and rain. Thirty-eight races were completed throughout the weekend.

Sailors were greeted with rain, wind and waves for the final day of racing at the U.S. Adult Sailing Championship for the Mallory Trophy. Seven races were completed to round off the championship series. Great work by the St. Petersburg Yacht Club’s waterfront team who were quick on their feet to repair breakdowns throughout the weekend and keep sailors racing.

In the end, it was Carter White (Portland, Maine) and his team composed of sailors from Sail Maine representing the Northeast Sailing Association, who came out on top in an exciting finish on Sunday. White’s team included Michael McAllister (Portland, Maine), Henry Cole (Freeport, Maine) and Fiona Gordon (Portland, Maine).

Carter and company were ranked fifth after two round robins. They avoided the qualifying repechage round by one spot, as the bottom six teams dueled it out over four races with the top six teams advancing to the championship round and the last two teams being eliminated from contention. The Sail Maine team saved their best for Sunday afternoon as they dominated the 10-team championship round and won by 11 points through 10 races.

“We sailed almost 40 races over four days. It’s pretty crazy,” said White. “I had never skippered a J/70 before so it was a lot of fun. The four of us have never sailed before as a team. Mike and I sail a lot together on the J/24.”

“We had a lot of breeze today, at times, and changing conditions throughout the event from 6 knots to 20 knots. There was a little bit of everything for everyone and the race committee did an excellent job.”

The win for White and his team earns them an entry to represent the U.S. at the Sailing Champions League World Qualifier.

David Loring’s team from Charleston, S.C. representing the South Atlantic YRA placed second. This team featured Jeff Woodard, Amy Woodard and Patrick Wilson.  Finishing third was Trey Sheehan (Chagrin Fall, Ohio), Wilson Stout (Annapolis, Md.), Brad Boston (Sarnia, Ontario, Canada), and Curtis Florence (Lakewood, Ohio). They represented the Inland Lake Yachting Association.

The Championship got underway on Thursday under light breeze. Most of the day was spent under postponement. Racers experienced a Northwest building breeze at 5 to 8 knots later in the afternoon and the fleet managed to complete two races in the first round robin series. Local knowledge paid off for skipper David Mendelblatt (St. Petersburg, Fla./Florida Sailing Association) who won both races to take an early lead.

Friday’s conditions were improved, as sailors experienced a Northeast breeze of 6 to 10 knots. The fleet tallied 16 races. Chris Raab (Huntington Beach, Calif./YRU of Southern California) took command of the leaderboard on Friday and had a six point lead through the first round robin and a five point lead through six races of the second round robin series.

On Saturday, sailors finished the second round robin, completed four races in the repechage round and the top ten teams sailed three races in the championship round. Sailors enjoyed a variety of conditions from medium breeze to start the day, to lighter breezes mid-day and ideal conditions for the start of the championship round. Raab and crew maintained a five point lead over Pat Toole (Santa Barbara, Calif./Southern California YRA) through the second round robin.

Teams qualified by competing at a high level in their respective RSA events. Teams consisted of both men and women sailors.

The league racing format offered sailors quick and competitive races, on-the-water umpiring, no discards, and an improved viewing opportunity for spectators. Every race counted, so consistency was a major factor. Races were approximately 15 minutes in duration. Some of the competitors have likened the format to college sailing in big boats.

First place team was presented the Clifford D. Mallory Trophy and received entry as the U.S. representative at the Sailing Champions League World Qualifier. The top three teams received US Sailing medals – Gold, Silver, Bronze. Teams representing the Southern Yacht Club, Edgewater Yacht Club, and James Island Yacht Club earned the Staton J. Peele, Jr. Trophy for sportsmanship.

Sportsmanship Notes:
  • Southern Yacht Club: Following racing Thursday evening, members of the Southern Yacht Club team de-rigged their J/70 and then assisted the St. Petersburg Yacht Club junior sailors by hauling 20+ Optimist prams out of the water.
  • James Island Yacht Club: Thank you to the sailors from the James Island Yacht Club for assisting in the measuring and tuning of the J/70s Saturday afternoon, prior to the start of the championship round.
  • Edgewater Yacht Club: Thank you to the sailors from the Edgewater Yacht Club for assisting in the measuring and tuning of the J/70s Saturday afternoon, prior to the start of the championship round. In addition, on Sunday sailors from the team came in off the water to assist in the replacement of a forestay; they even offered their personal forestay to the event.
For more U.S. Adult Sailing Championship/ Mallory Cup Trophy sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

J/121 Awarded SAIL Best Boats- Performance!

J/121 offshore speedster(Boston, MA)- SAIL Magazine has announced the winners of SAIL’s 2018 Best Boats Awards. If there’s one word that sums up the Best Boats Class of 2018, it would have to be “performance.” The boat review team at SAIL magazine determined the new J/121 offshore speedster was SAIL’s choice for Best Boats- Performance 30 to 40 feet. Here is their commentary:

“The J/Boats team are obviously good designers and boat builders. Their record in this area stands for itself.

However, ever since the advent of Rod Johnstone’s iconic J/24 in 1977, they have also shown an uncanny ability to discern what exactly it is sailors are looking for in their next boat: think the J/105 and its then cutting-edge retracting bowsprit in 1991, or the phenomenon that is the J/70 sportboat- eclipsing all other similar designs to date- in just four years!

The latest in this long line of outside-the-box designs is the new 40 foot J/121, a boat specifically tailored to appeal to skippers who are 1) tired of having to round up eight to 10 people to go racing and 2) are looking for something other the usual windward-leeward “sausage” courses that now dominate inshore racing.

To this end, the boat carries a “five-sail” rig that includes a main, jib and removable staysail (like the IMOCA 60 class), to make shifting gears with a crew of as little as five a snap, whether sailing inshore or off soundings. (A Code 0 or A-sail—sails #4 and 5—can be flown off the boat’s retractable sprit). To keep the boat on its feet, designer Al Johnstone has also included an easy-to-use water ballast system that can shift 104 gallons of water (880 lbs. worth) from side-to-side; the equivalent of four bodies worth of rail meat that’ll never call in sick or have scheduling conflicts.

With respect to promoting innovative, fun racing, J/Boats is championing something called “Open Course” racing- middle distance events that offer the best of both inshore and distance events (think the famous Three-Bridge Fiasco regatta on San Francisco Bay). The boat would also be perfect for shorthanded offshore racing, whether it be a shorter event like the Ida Lewis distance race or the Marblehead-Halifax. Oh, and did we mention the boat sails like a dream and is a stunner to boot? A winner in every sense of the word.”   J/121 offshore speedster video here.   Read more about the J/121 SAIL Magazine Best Boats award Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Classic Opening For Hot Rum Series!

J/125 sailing Hot Rum series

(San Diego, CA)- Every year, many sailors in southern California look forward to what may be one of the most popular SoCal offshore keelboat classics of all time- the infamous “Hot Rum Series” run by San Diego YC in November and December.  It is popular because it is, essentially, a “no brainer” from a racing standpoint. It is a “pursuit race”, so you start at an appointed time pre-determined by the SDYC PRO and PHRF calculators, and where you finish is how you actually finished in the race!  Doh! Yeah.  That simple.  Go home knowing you could have gone from zero to hero in one day! For the most part, the 100+ boats and nearly 1,000 competitors simply love the spectacle and the fact they are participating on yet another beautiful, fall, outrageously spectacular day off “Sunny Diego’s” majestic Point Loma peninsula. 

The event is a favorite amongst many J/sailors in the region.  Not surprisingly, many of them do quite well and earn more than their fair share of silverware, plates, pickle-dishes, salad bowls, photos, and what not.

J/120 sailing San Diego Hot Rum seriesThis past weekend’s race was quite typical of the Hot Rum series.  The first starters saw light breezes from the northwest, building as the afternoon progressed up to 8-10 kts.  In such scenarios, it is often the little boats that start first with the lowest ratings that get the short-end of the straw.  Meanwhile, the big fast 50 to 70 footers in the back of the pack roar off the start line in 10-15 kts winds and smoke the little boats by the time everyone converges on the finish line just off Shelter Island inside San Diego Harbor.

However, this past weekend, it was not so.  Little boats did OK.  An infamous Ericson 35 Mk XXX with a crazy rating took overall honors, yet again.  But, the Gomez-Ibarra crew on he J/70 VAGAZO got 4th overall and first in their class.  Then, Chuck Nichols’ J/120 CC RIDER took 7th overall and fourth in their class.  And, Dag Fish’s J/105 VIGGEN took 8th overall and first in their PHRF 3 class.  Not a bad showing for this trio of J/Boats!

On a class basis, Mark Surber’s J/125 DERIVATIVE took 5th in PHRF Class 1. And, Viggo Torbensen’s J/125 TIMESHAVER placed 7th. In PHRF Class 2, Laun’s J/120 CAPER was 6th behind Nichols’ CC RIDER.

The J/70s just about cleaned house in PHRF 4 class.  Behind VAGAZO, it was Wyman’s NUNUHUNU in 2nd and Dave Vieregg’s SOGGY DOLLAR in 4th.

Finally, in PHRF 5 class, the Case’s J/22 ZO ZO took third place, followed by Lynch’s J/30 RUFFIAN in 8th and Dave Cattle’s J/27 BLACKADDER in 9th position. Sailing photo credits- SDYC/ Cynthia Sinclair. 

For more Hot Rum Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Beautiful J/Models for Home or Office

J/100 model (San Cristobal, Dominican Republic)- Wondering what kind of fun and unique gift to give to a friend or loved one this holiday season?  Consider Abordage down in the Dominican Republic.

Founded by Denis Cartier in 1989, his model-making business called Abordage.com has produced a number of gorgeous J/Models, ranging from the J/22, J/24, J/70, J/80 up to the J/109, J/122, J/44, and J/122E.

With their great devotion to both the sea and sailing, Abordage has been proudly producing beautifully handcrafted ship models; either classic or modern ships for nearly three decades.  Spectacular examples of their work include the 100 footer COMANCHE (4 feet long!) and the equally large (6 feet tall!) model of J/24 half modelthe ORACLE America’s Cup winged catamaran that was in the lobby of Bermuda’s international airport!

From their well-established workshop in the Dominican Republic, the highly skilled team of craftsmen works with only the finest materials and produces every ship model in minute detail and with innovative perfection.  If you have an interest in these remarkably affordable models of your boat, please visit- http://www.abordage.com.  For J/Model examples, please take a look at some of the stunning detail here.   For more information, contact Denis Cartier- email- abordage@abordage.com/ tel: +1-809-5281992 ext- 503 Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

ARMEN HABITAT French J/80 National Champion!

J/80s sailing off France (Quiberon, France)- The French J/80 sailing season ended where it started, on the Bay of Quiberon from October 28 to November 1, 2017, at Quiberon (Port-Haliguen) organized by the Yacht Club of Quiberon.  Forty-seven teams participated in the finale that saw amazing racing from the top J/80 crews in France.  The regatta was held in variable wind conditions, oscillating between 7 and 15 knots.  The first day saw light weather and flat seas, and then the remaining days had medium breezes and chop sitting on top of large swells.

In the end, it was Pierre Loic Berthet’s crew on ARMEN HABITAT from APCC Voile Sportive that were crowned with the most coveted sportboat title in all of France, that of French J/80 National Champion.

Once again, the French J/80 Nationals were blessed with good weather and a very high level of competition. After three days of sailing, the top three boats were separated by a mere 7 pts.  Berthet’s ARMEN HABITAT led the way with 31 points. Anne Phelipon’s NAVIGATLANTIQUE from Societe Regate Rochelaises from La Rochelle were second with 35 points. And, Sylvain Pellisier’s VOILERIE ALL PURPOSE from Virtual Regatta YC had 38 points.

On the last day, Berthet’s ARMEN HABITAT consolidated their lead with two bullets to win with just 33 pts in 10 races!  Pellisier’s VOILERIE ALL PURPOSE also closed out their series with all top five finishes to take the silver on the podium with 45 pts net, 12 pts back from the leader Berthet.  Then, rounding out the podium was Anne Phelipon’s NAVIGATLANTIQUE in the bronze position, suffering from a closing 3-21-7 to finish with 62 pts total.

The balance of the top five was Jeremy Jean’s APCC EQUIPPE JEUNE MIXTE in fourth from APCC Voile Sportive with 76 pts.  Just two points back in fifth place was Theo Carayon’s VITEL SAILING Team from E.V. Trebeurden with 78 pts.  For more French J/80 National Championship sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Brilliant Winter Sailing @ Hamble Winter Series

J/112E Davanti Tyres winning Hamble Winter series (Hamble, England)- Competitors for the fifth weekend of the Hamble Winter Series enjoyed a fantastic day of racing with the Hamble River Sailing Club, supported by OneSails. Winter racing doesn't get much better, there may have been a chill in the air, but the sea temperature in the Solent in November is as good as June. Bright sunshine, 15-20 knots of wind over tide, and the whole Solent to choose from, a wide variety of teams and boats reveled in the superb conditions. Principal Race Officer, Stuart Childerley and his team delivered a superb course with one long race for all classes.

In IRC One, Chaz Ivill's J/112E DAVANTI TYRES scored their fourth bullet of the series, and was the fastest boat around the track in any class after IRC time correction. They are now leading their class by a considerable margin.

"This is the first year with the new boat, and as always it takes time to tune up and figure out the best set up,” commented Chaz Ivill. "We have been sailing the boat much flatter in a good breeze, and that has powered her up, especially upwind."

J/88 sailing Hamble winter seriesIn the J/88 Class, Avia Willment is having an outstanding debut season, scoring a fifth bullet for the series, but only just. J/88 National Champion, Paul Ward's EAT SLEEP J REPEAT was just 17 seconds behind. Gavin Howe's TIGRIS was third.  Consequently, Willment’s crew is leading by a hefty margin of 9 pts over fellow 88 teams.  Second is Howe’s TIGRIS with 16 pts net, followed by Richard Cooper’s JONGLEUR with 20 pts in third place.

In IRC Two, Simon Perry's J/109 JIRAFFE pulled off the best start of the day to take second place and is currently sitting in third place overall for the series.

In IRC Three, David Greenhalgh's J/92 J’RONIMO was third, by just 11 seconds after IRC time correction. Nevertheless, still leading the series id Annie & Andy Howe’s J/97 BLACKJACK II with just 13 pts net after seven races sailed.  Second is Robin Stevenson’s J/92S UPSTART with 19 pts net.

Racing at the Hamble Winter Series continues with weekend #six on Sunday 12th November.  Sailing photo credits- Hamo Thornycroft.  For more Hamble Winter Series sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Lindauer Segler-Club Wins DSBL Berlin Finale

J/70s sailing German league in Berlin, GermanyNorddeutscher Regatta Verein Crowned 2017 German Sailing League Champions
(Berlin, Germany)- The 2017 Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga championship (DSBL) was characterized by remarkable “roller-coaster” scorelines by all clubs and the resulting anxiety-ridden finale in Berlin.  After comfortably leading the series with just 20 pts going into the finale, it appeared the last event would just be a coronation for Deutscher Touring YC to win the series, an almost anti-climactic event.  And, all other clubs would just be competing for the balance of the podium, such was the consistency of German’s leading club for the entire season, sailing on the fleet of matched J/70 one-design sailboats.

In what could only be described as one of the most shocking, chaotic outcomes in the history of the DSBL, the entire top of the leaderboard for the season series was “flip-flopped” in one regatta!

Winning the Berlin event with a very strong performance was the Lindauer Segler-Club with mostly top three scores to win by a comfortable margin of 8 pts, with a total of 36 pts for 15 races.  A surprisingly good effort was put on by Chiemsee YC, winning a tie-breaker on 44 pts each over Dusseldorf YC.  Then, rounding out the top five were Norddeutscher Regatta Verein in 4th place with 45 pts and Wassersport Verein Hemelingen with 48 pts.

J/70 German Sailing League winners in BerlinAs a result, the DSBL series experienced an eye-opening outcome.  By virtue of finishing 4th in Berlin, Norddeutscher Regatta Verein won the 2017 edition of the German J/70 Sailing League. The six regatta series (Prien, Lindau, Kiel, Travemunde, Glucksburg, Berlin) was a story of steady, but rocky, improvement for the NRV team.  Their regatta tallies of 10-2-1-9-2-4 were enough to be crowned German DSBL champions with a total of 28 pts.

After going into the final regatta with a comfortable lead, it was Deutscher Touring YC that must be crying into their 1-liter beer steins! After posting a 4-6-6-1-3 in the first five regattas, the famous Oktoberfest may have influenced their thinking.  A 16th place in the last regatta may have left a sour taste in their mouths, dropping them into 2nd overall with 36 pts.

Nearly eclipsing their brothers for the worst performance in a finale were the Segel-und Motorboot Club Uberlingen.  After winning the first regatta in Prien, their team was happily in 2nd place for the season going into the finale. However, like their DTYC colleagues, no one seemed to figure out how to sail on the German J/70 women sailorsflat lake in Berlin, adding a 13th to their tally to drop to third overall for the season with a 39 pts total.

View the German J/70 sailing video summaries here:

German J/70 Youth Sailing League Finale
After the “open” DSBL championship was completed on Saturday, the youth league held their finale on the same boats and same venue on Sunday. The “youth league” was comprised of five regattas, 143 races, 32 competitors, 66 races, 276 nm of races sailed, with the highest recorded speed of 17.5 kts!  Taking 2017 league honors was Berliner YC, followed by Bayerischer YC in second place and Munchner YC in third to round out the podium.  Follow the German J/70 Sailing League (Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga)   For more German J/70 Sailing League information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Monday, November 13, 2017

BLACK SAILS Crowned J/70 South American Champion

J/70 Black Sails winning South Americans (Algarrobo, Chile)- The second annual J/70 South American Championship took place off Algarrobo, Chile and was hosted by Cofradía Náutica del Pacífico from the 27th to 31st of October. Almost 100 sailors participated on twenty boats, including teams from Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay.

There were lots of expectations that had been mounting for months prior to the regatta. Chile had a 20+ active J/70 fleet members among the first 33 boats imported from USA in the last 5 years into South America.  The Chilean class did their best to make a fair championship, with Chief Measurer Dave McNabb and a local team measuring all boats.  Flavio Naveira and Nelson Ilha lead the Jury team.  And, Theodoro (Kiko) Kundig lead the RC team.

The previous month, some teams started to search for light 5th crew among the Optimist class in Algarrobo.  This time of the year is somewhat famous for the strong winds in Algarrobo, so the average weight among the boats was 340 to 350kgs.  Before the start of the first official race, BLACK SAILS team was set with 5-crew and 370kgs total weight.  But, after a bad practice race with light winds and looking at the weather report for the week, they decided to put one crew back on the shore!  And, they were right.  Everyday, but Sunday, the winds averaged 10-12kts and two races were sailed with less than 10kts. There were four days of racing with a total of nine races.

J/70 sailing off Chile- South AmericansOn the first day three races were sailed, the first started at 2:30pm.  The fleet was greeted by southwest winds from 230 to 240 deg at 8-12 kts and choppy seas.  Top teams were Per von Appen’s BLACK SAILS with a 1-1-3 tally and TSUNAMI with the Ducasse family on board with an 8-3-1 scoreline (skipper was Andres Ducasse). The Ducasse family had four brothers and their father as the team; a tough crew that would certainly battle until the very end of the regatta! Then, sitting in third with scores of 3-6-5 was URUBORO sailed by Maria “Pipa” Cisternas, her family, and Benjamin Grez calling tactics- they were a very tough team to beat.

On the second day, two races took place with the 1st start at 12:00. Light southwesterly winds from 240 to 260 deg prevailed and the heavier crews struggled. BLACK SAILS continued to stretch their lead with a 9-1.  And, the Ducasse family on URUBORO did a great job to manage the light winds and the tough fleet to hang on to second overall in the provisional standings with a 3-8.

J/70s start South Americans off Algarrobo, ChileOn the third day of racing, the more experienced crews maintained their consistency and kept rising to the top of the leaderboard.  With stronger southwest breezes of 12-15 kts, the boats had to manage transitions from planing mode to soak mode in the large Pacific swells and the wind streaks.  In general, sailing off Algarrobo is very favored on the left.  But, this time some boats gained a lot looking for some pressure with the kite downwind on the right side of the course.  Carlos Vergara on board SENSEI/ TECNOFAST posted a 3-2-2 for the day’s best record.  And, Matias Seguel on board VOLVO had the next best tally for the day with a 5-1-1. Unfortunately, SENSEI/ TECNOFAST and team were OCS on the first race of the day (race #6) and could not stay in the top places.

Chilean J/70 sailors at South AmericansWhat became the final day of racing started a little later than 1200 hrs.  Only one race was held with very light winds from the west.  Ducasse’s TSUNAMI did a great job to win the only race of the day, ultimately taking 2nd overall for the Championship.  Closing with a 3rd place in race 9 was von Appen’s BLACK SAILS, effectively shutting the door on all other competitors to win the regatta with just 20 pts net. By taking a 5th place in the final race, Alejandro Perez’s PELIGRO took the final bronze position on the podium. Seguel’s VOLVO could not overcome their mid-regatta “brain fade” of 11-11-9 to take fourth place (note- they had by far the best last four races of the fleet- a 5-1-1-4!).  Then, an early fleet leader, Cisternas’ URUBORO faded fast with a 9-10-7 in the last three races to drop to fifth place overall.

Winning the Corinthians Division was Benjamin Fuenzalida with father and brothers. Benjamin is an ex-Optimist sailor with a brilliant future in the J/70 class.

Best boat from abroad was Brazil’s Marcos Soares, sailing HIGHLANDER to a 7th place overall.  Then, Brazil’s Renato Farías sailing TONESSA was 9th and Diego García’s CHAPULIN from Uruguay took 12th place.

The next South American Championship will take place in Buenos Aires, Argentina in November 2018. Brazil will host in 2019. Sailing photo credits- Ben Sans.   Local sailng news story here on Algarrobo Digital   For more J/70 South American Championship sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

J/145 JEDI Lovin' Seattle Sailing!

J/145 owners in Seattle, WA (Seattle, WA)- We recently received a report regarding how a J/145 is fairing in its current home in the Pacific Northwest- Seattle, Washington area.  Here is the sweet note from Edie & John Tenneson, owners of the J/145 JEDI:

“We wanted to give you an update on our J/145 JEDI.  We have had her for five years, having brought her up from San Diego in October 2012 (formerly "Rain Cloud"). We have enjoyed racing in the Pacific Northwest doing longer distance races such as Swiftsure and Round the County, local mid-distance series such as the SYC Tri-Island series, and competing in buoy racing in PSSR (Puget Sound Summer Regatta) and PSSC (Puget Sound Spring Championship).

J/145 JEDI sailing Puget Sound off Seattle, WAWe just finished fourth in the Seattle YC invitational Grand Prix this past weekend, holding our own against two TP52s and a RP55.

We now race in the ORC division. New sails, constant learning, and great teamwork have led to many successes.

Our 2001 J/145 is a powerful, all-around cruiser and racer that is a thrill to sail.  She is now the only J/145 in the PNW, and we are proud to have her and be part of the J/Boat family!

Note- our boat name may have its inspiration in the famous characters of Star Wars, but it’s also a conjugation of our names “John + Edie = Jedi”.

We hope you enjoy some recent photos of her in Puget Sound, thanks to our friend and amazing photographer- Jan Anderson from Seattle.  All the Best, Edie and John Tenneson” Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

J/70 Sailing League using MarkSETBot

J/70 sailing league and MarkSETBot(Grosse Pointe, MI)- J/70 Sailing League using MarkSETBot for automated race course management!

Wally Cross has seen the future and wants to share the view. Here he reports on what may be the next big thing in our sport.  Wally comments on this evolutionary product:

“Three automated buoys from MarkSETBot, two operators and one RIB – that’s all you need to run a regatta with a true course every time. The MarkSETBot buoy is changing the management side of yacht racing.

Despite heavy reliance on volunteers, many yacht races have significant expenses that are making the events cost prohibitive.

When I read in Scuttlebutt about the village needed to run the Etchells Worlds, the PRO/organizer was appropriately proud of all the help which made the regatta a success, but when you consider the cost of travel, hotel and food for more than 20 RC people, the event budget quickly swells, and the expense even exceeds the cost of purchasing these automated buoys.

Key West was one of my favorite regattas until it became too expensive to run. Block Island also is one of my must sail events. However, according to Dick Neville, the cost of volunteer help to run all the courses is over $100,000.

Not only is the traditional way of running a regatta expensive, it also is slow and rarely perfect. Another drawback is the downtime between races, waiting for courses to be set and reset. When on the water, sailors would rather be racing.

J/70 sailor Wally Cross- Grosse Pointe YC sailing directorI recently ran a J/70 Stadium Sailing event at the Grosse Pointe Yacht Club (Detroit, MI) in partnership with Benjamin Klatzka, USA president of the Premiere Sailing League (PSL). We teamed up with Kevin Morin, inventor of the MarkSETBot, and ran an all-automated race course using three mobile MarkSETBot marks. PSL intends to use MarkSETBot at all future stadium sailing events.

Three moveable marks can make a windward leeward course complete. The self-propelled MarkSETBot buoy is approximately 6 feet by 4 feet in size and motors at four knots. The mark’s standard battery has an average life of eight hours, with larger battery options available.

Controlled by a smartphone, the buoys move independently, in pairs, or as a group. A course is set by simply pointing the connected phone at the wind or by using wind instruments on the mark to research trends and then set a bearing based on the data. Once set, the MarkSETBot locks on a GPS location and holds position.

We held 18 races at the J/70 Stadium Sailing event with 12 teams in less than three hours. With only a five-minute crash course on using the MarkSETBot app, Benjamin controlled the setting of the marks using a smartphone, moving them independently and as a group. The starting line easily became gates, transitioned to a finish line and then moved back to the starting line for the next race.

The MarkSETBot were put to good use with constant changes to the course based on wind speed and changing wind direction. Just prior to one start, the wind shifted 90 degrees. With a conventional race course, it would have taken up to half an hour to adjust the marks. With MarkSETBot, Benjamin was able to instruct all marks on the course to shift 90 degrees. The complete course was changed in under 60 seconds, and we were ready to race again.

How can you run a regatta with only three marks, two people and one boat? Here’s how:

  • Three MarkSetBots are needed. One MarkSetBot acts as the windward mark and the other two act as the start/gate/finish.
  • Two people manage the racing: one is responsible for scoring and controlling the marks and the other is the PRO.
  • One RIB is needed for on-the-water judging and sighting start and finish lines. In the future, this could be done via drone without the need for a RIB.
How is this better than traditional mark set boats?
  • Fewer RC boats and people required
  • Faster course changes – rapid changing of course direction with no effort, leading to a more precise course
  • Fewer marks necessary – start marks can be repurposed to become gates and finish marks in under 30 seconds with the tap of a button
  • More accurate and easier deep water mark setting
  • Better wind information – displays current and past wind readings without having to radio to the mark set boat
If you are interested in the history behind MarkSetBot, Kevin Morin conceptualized the automated buoys while racing on Cass Lake at the Pontiac Yacht Club. This inland lake is shifty to say the least, and race committee work is a nonstop job. Often, courses are set less than perfect just to get races going.

This new technology eliminates some of the challenges faced by race committees in locations where the wind is shifty, volunteers are scarce, or the water is too deep to set an anchor. These issues often force them to set a course that is less than ideal or, sometimes, cancel racing entirely.

Our world is changing fast with new innovations. Just as cars will soon be able to drive without a person steering, buoys for sailboat races can be autonomous too. I’m thrilled about this new technology that will result in better races and eliminate the waste of both money and time. “  Thanks for contribution from Scuttlebutt Sailing News. Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Witches Brew Race- Dress for Success!

J/120 Emocean celebrating Witches Brew race on Halloween (Charleston, SC)- Every Halloween weekend, the Charleston Ocean Racing Association hosts its annual “Witches Brew Race”.  This year, it took place on October 29 in Charleston Harbor in a for-fun, random-leg race around various government markers.  The regatta rules stipulate- “all helms-persons shall be female.  Boats without female helms-persons shall be disqualified.”

In addition to the highly competitive harbor course racing, there was a costume contest adjudicated by the Race Committee (note- the Race Committee does not take candy for bribes, just rum!).  Special prizes were awarded to the top three “Best Dressed Boats” and “Best Dressed Crew.”

J/105 enjoying Witches Brew Halloween raceThe start time at 1300 off the Carolina YC dock saw the PHRF A fleet take off in good breeze.  Ten minutes later both PHRF C and PHRF D classes were also on the track, the first two fleets sailing Course 7 (longer) and Class D sailing Course 1

The conditions for the race were a bit rough on the women skippers and mostly women crews!  In the end, they held their composure in the 15 to 30 kts winds at the top mark!

In the PHRF A class, the Self’s J/105 RUCKUS took the silver.  Then, in the PHRF D class, the Hanckel’s J/120 EMOCEAN also took silver, followed by the Swatta’s J/30 LAS BRISAS in third place.

However, the most important trophy for most boats was the Costume Contest for “Best Dressed Crew & Boat”.  By popular vote, it was a tie for second place between the “Astronauts” (on the J/105 RUCKUS) and the “Wonder Women” (on the J/120 EMOCEAN).  A great time was certainly had by all afterwards with copious amounts of Halloween food and refreshments.  Sailing Photo Credits- Priscilla Parker    Follow CORA’s Facebook page here   For more CORA Witches Brew Race sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Congrats to Charlie, Mark & Nick- VOR Leg#1!

Team Vestas- winners Volvo Ocean Race- Leg 1 (Lisbon, Portugal)- Congrats to Newport sailing duo Charlie Enright and Mark Towill and the rest of the VESTAS 11th Hour Racing crew (including Newport Shipyard’s Nick Dana, son of Charlie Dana- owner of the yard) on their first leg win in the Volvo Ocean Race!

VESTAS 11th Hour Racing won Leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race, crossing the finish line in the River Tagus in Lisbon, Portugal with a 2.5 hour time cushion over the second place boat.

It’s a tremendous victory for American skipper Charlie Enright and his team, who earn 8 points for their efforts (including a one point ‘bonus’ for winning the leg).

It wasn’t easy. The wind shut down on the final approach, and an early morning lead of 34-nautical miles over second-placed MAPFRE was whittled down to 10-miles, with the finish in sight.

Nevertheless, the crew on the VESTAS 11TH Hour held their nerve; tacking and zigzagging towards the line, into agonizingly light headwinds, and finally securing victory.

“It’s incredible,” said Mark Towill, Team Director, from on board the boat moments before the finish.  “What a way to kick off the event. It’s been an incredible performance for the team… It’s been a challenging leg. We still have a lot to improve and long way to go… Today is our day, we’ll enjoy it, but then we have to get back to work and focus on the next leg.”

J/24 Champion Charlie Enright skippering Team VestasCharlie Enright is the third American skipper to win Leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race. The others were John Kostecki, on illbruck in 2001-02, and Paul Cayard on EF Language in 1997-98. Both of those teams went on to an overall victory – so the omens for Charlie Enright are certainly good.

Vestas 11th Hour Racing – which carries US and Danish flags – are the first American flagged team to win Leg 1. They are also the first Danish team to win a leg.

“We have a long way to go certainly, but this was a good way to start,” said skipper Charlie Enright. “SiFi (navigator Simon Fisher) did a great job. He didn’t really make any missteps. But every sked is nerve-wracking, especially when you’re stuck in a river going backwards!

Team Vestas 11th Hour Racing sailing Volvo race“But we pride ourselves on not getting too high or too low and I think we executed that on this leg. It’s about having confidence in ourselves and committing to the process and now we’re starting to see the results of that.”

From a J/Boats sailor perspective, it’s interesting to note the top three boats were all led by very experienced J/sailors.  Charlie Enright was a J/24 World champion; the second place skipper- Xabi Fernández of MAPFRE and the third place skipper- Charles Caudrelier on Dongfeng Racing Team- both have had extensive experience sailing J/80s at a National and European level.

The next leg, a 7,000 nm course from Lisbon, Portugal to Cape Town, South Africa, starts November 5th, 2017.  For more Volvo Ocean Race sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

SISU Wins 39th Annual J/24 East Coasts!

J/24 East Coast Championship off Annapolis Julian Tops J/22 Mid-Atlantics
(Annapolis, MD)- Over the “pre-Halloween” weekend, the Severn Sailing Association held its 39th annual J/24 East Coast Championship.  Simultaneously, they also hosted the J/22 Mid-Atlantic Championship.  Off the mouth of the Severn River on Chesapeake Bay, both fleets enjoyed a lot of racing over the weekend, with J/24s sailing nine races and the J/22s seven races.

What was not surprising was who won the J/22 class, a long-time leader, Brad Julian from Youngstown YC in Youngstown, NY.  What surprised most everyone in the J/24 class was to see James Bonham’s SISU defeat several J/24 class championship teams (of note- Bonham did have two-time J/70 World Champion crew Willem van Waay in the cockpit and past J/24 East Coast Champion skipper Todd Hillman as “rail meat”).

J/24s sailing off Annapolis, MDThe J/24s had twenty-five boats registered for their 39th J/24 East Coast Championship; a terrific turnout considering the class was also celebrating 40 years of J/Boats (e.g. J/24s), too! The teams came from as far away as Bermuda, Nova Scotia, Florida, Maine, New York and the usual suspects from the local Chesapeake Bay fleet.  It was not an easy win by any stretch of the imagination for Bonham’s SISU crew; in fact, it was a three-way battle for at least the first six races.  After the first six races, SISU’s tally of 3-2-1-1-2-1 for 10 pts was just four points in front of perennial J/24 class champion, Tony Parker and the infamous BANGOR PACKET crew.  Parker’s tally was an equally impressive 1-1-3-3-3-3 for 14 pts.  And, just as good in those six races was Travis Odenbach’s HONEY BADGER with a 4-3-2-2-1-2 tally for 14 pts.  However, thereafter, the “wheels fell off the shopping trolley” for Parker and Odenbach.  Parker’s crew misfired in race 7, adding a 7th to their scoreline, while Odenbach’s crew “sent it down the mineshaft” in race 8, adding a 9th to their scorecard.  In the end, consistency paid off for Bonham’s all-star cast on SISU, closing with a 1-2-5 to win by five points.  Second was Parker’s BANGOR PACKET and third was Odenbach’s HONEY BADGER.

J/22s sailing off Annapolis, MDUnlike the J/24s, the top three J/22 teams on the leaderboard were all very close until the last race.  In fact, the final race for the J/22 Mid-Atlantic Championship determined the ultimate outcome.  Going into that race, Mike Marshall’s BAD NEWS was leading with 18 pts, followed by Brad Julian’s USA 677 with 19 pts and Jeff Todd’s HOT TODDY next with 20 pts.  By winning the last race, Julian’s USA 677 crew snatched the title away from Marshall’s BAD NEWS, who scored a 4th in the last race to drop to 2nd.  Todd’s final race 3rd place kept them in 3rd overall.  Sailing photo credits- Sarah Parker.   For more J/24 East Coast and J/22 Mid-Atlantic Coast Championship sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Another “White Out” @ J/105 East Coast Champs!

J/105s sailing regatta (Annapolis, MD)- Over the 28th to 29th October weekend, seventeen J/105s took to the line to battle for honors as the 2017 J/105 East Coast Champion.  The host Annapolis YC and its amazing volunteers put on another great weekend of sailing, managing to get in five races for the fleet.

Winning the regatta handily with two 1sts and a trio of 2nds was John White’s team on USA 113, with a total of just 8 pts.  Working hard to stay with them all weekend was the duo of Cedric Lewis & Fredrik Salvesen on MIRAGE, posting yet another amazing record of 4-1-2-1-3 for 11 pts total.  Then, rounding out the podium was Andrew Kennedy’s BAT IV, winning a tie-breaker on 21 pts each with Carl & Scott Gitchell’s TENACIOUS.  Andrew had this to say about the event, “Thanks to our awesome crew- Jenny Holzer, Christina Mayor, Terry Reese, James Beatty, and, particularly, all-star tactician Ray Wulff- for a great event.”  For more J/105 East Coast Championship sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Åländska SS Take Finnish J/70 Sailing League Series

Finnish J/70 sailing league off Helsinki, Finland (Helsinki (Lauttasaari), Finland)- The Finnish J/70 Sailing League completed their final event in Lauttasaari, just off the mouth of Helsinki harbor.  Going into the finale, the top team was Åländska Segelsällskapet's first team; they had a solid five-point lead over Mariehamns Seglarförening (MSF), who in turn was just one point ahead of Helsinki's Brändö Seglarea.  However, because of the racing has been so close by the top teams, it was believed by many that it would be hard to displace any of the top three from the podium.

Finnish J/70 sailing league teamThere was no question that Åländska SS crew were confident.  “Our goal is to win the last race. Our team is in really a good mood and the training has gone well. We hope windy weather, because it's our strength,” said MSF Captain Henrik Lundberg.  No question, those were prophetic words for them.

The regatta culminated with the Åländska SS First team taking the overall championship.  Second, was the women’s team from Nyländska Jaktklubben (NJK) and taking third because of a strong performance in the last event was Mariehamns Seglarförening (MSF).

Finnish J/70 sailing league winnersThe teams consisted of four-man crew, whose configurations were different in different races. In the competition, Åländska SS's top team was Daniel Mattsson, Mathias Dahlman, Isak Nordlund and Staffan Lindberg.

Thanks to its victory, Åländska Segelsällskapet will be able to sail to the Nord Stream Race offshore competition in 2018. In addition, the top teams will be able to compete in the 2018 Sailing Champions League qualifying rounds.   Follow the Finnish J/70 Sailing League Facebook page here   For more Finnish J/70 Sailing League information Add to Flipboard Magazine.