Thursday, September 3, 2009

J/Newsletter- September 2nd, 2009

J/95 sailboat anchored off Sandy Point, CTNEW J/Boats @ Newport Sailboat Show

September 17-20th- Newport, RI

Come on down to Newport and enjoy some great weather and sightseeing in this classic, beautiful, New England town by the sea.  While New England had a rather rainy beginning to summer (like June and July), August has proven to be a rather remarkable turnaround.

We’re excited to debut the J/95 and J/97 together at the Newport show.  The J/95 is a breakthrough design, with twin rudders and shoal draft keel and carbon rig, it's no wonder sailors are raving about a shoal-draft boat that has such a great turn of performance.  Not to be outdone, it's newly introduced sistership, the J/97, has simply torn up the European IRC regatta circuit and combines fantastic cruising amenities with a serious turn of performance. We will also have a gorgeous J/100 available for show and demo sails in Newport Harbor for those of you interested in a spectacular gentleman's (and woman's) day-sailing boat-- after all, Dr. Laura Schlessinger (the renowned psychologist/ talk show host) considers it her "favorite" J in the range!  Find out why.  Please contact J/Boats (phone- 401-846-8410) or a J/Boats dealer.

J/Regatta News

J-Boats sailing downwind- the world's best sailboatsThe Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

The August sailing season has wound down to its closing moments. The European circuit is taking a breather.   And, the American events were highlighted by the J/105 and PHRF New England Championships. Read on!  More importantly, if you have more J/Regatta News, please email it or upload onto our J/Boats Facebook page!  Below are the summaries. Read on!  More importantly, if you have more J Regatta News, please email  it or upload onto our J/Boats Facebook page!  Below are the summaries.

J/105 sailboat- Scimitar winning J/105 New EnglandsJ/105/ PHRF New Englands

SCIMITAR's Cutting Edge Team Wins J/105s

(Marblehead, MA- August 27-29)- The remnants of Tropical Storm Danny, which brought 25-30 knots of breeze out of the northeast on Saturday, turned the PHRF New Englands into a two-day event.  Despite no racing on Saturday, each Race Committee was able to complete five races, making for an excellent championship for 104 boats entered in this year's PHRF Championship. 

"We were anticipating winds of 30 knots or greater combined with 8-foot seas for Saturday and we put together a contingency plan. At 6 p.m. Friday night we had to call it off for Saturday and I think everyone is glad we did," said Principal Race Office Ken Adam of the Corinthian Yacht Club. "But, we got in six races over two days which the sailors all seemed to be happy with. The three race committees from the Corinthian, Eastern and Boston yacht clubs really worked together as a team with the safety and welfare of the sailors coming first."

The most competitive of all the fleets at the New Englands was the 22-strong J105 fleet.  Henry Brauer and Stewart Neff and their crew aboard SCIMITAR won the J/105s in the most impressive fashion - winning four of five races and scoring just seven points in the competitive 22-boat J/105 fleet.  Taking second in the J/105s was Peter & Doug Morgan's STEEL AWAY.  Third was Ken Colburn's very well sailed GHOST from Portland, ME with local hotshot Bob Slattery aboard.

Brauer and Neff sailed in a local one-design keelboat fleet in Marblehead for 15 years and just this past July started racing in the larger J/105s. Their results have been nothing short of remarkable.  "We felt it was time for a change so we sold our old boat and moved to a bigger boat," Neff said. "In our debut J/105 regatta, we were third overall at Marblehead Race Week and first place here today in the J/105 New Englands.  It was fun to have a fellow Tufts Jumbo classmate, Stuart Johnstone, aboard to help on speed and tactics."  The J/105 is one of the most dynamic racing fleets out of Marblehead today.  "We have a lot more one design sailors coming into the New England J/105 fleet who really know how to work their way around a race course," said Fritz Koopman of Salem who raced with fifth-place finisher Mike Royer of Beverly.  "I think the J/105 fleet has a lot more talent coming in and this has made the racing really interesting and far more challenging," Royer added.

On the PHRF handicap fleet front, in PHRF Class 2, Seamus Hourihan's J/120 RUFFIAN finished fifth and two J/130s battled it out to finish seventh and eighth, respectively, Kris Kristiansens's SAGA and Jeff Eberle's CILISTA.  In PHRF Class 3, Chris Zibailo's SUPERSTITION was third followed by Raymond Janney's J/35 DIE FLEDERMAUS to round out the top 5.  In PHRF Class 4, Ward Blodgett's J/33 SIRROCO was fifth and one point back was Adam Saidla's J/100 MOOSE DROOL.  In PHRF Class 7, John Caldwell and his renowned "merry makers" (a.k.a. party animals) aboard the J/24 BLUE FOX handily won with two firsts.  Fellow J sailors Jon Lakcs on his J/30 VIVA and Bob Cunningham on the J/30 RUFFIAN were fourth and fifth.  For more regatta info.

J/109 North American Sailboat regatta- Chicago, IL 2009J/109 North Americans Report

STORM-tossed Conclusion to Great Lakes Regatta

(Chicago, IL- August 14-16)-   The 2009 J1/09 North Americans were held at the Verve Cup Regatta hosted by Chicago Yacht Club.  Fourteen teams competed for the championship including teams from the west (Team VALOR with Fleet Captain Tom Brott from Seal Beach Yacht Club), the south (Team SURPRISE/HAMBURG with Fleet Captain Albrecht Goethe from Lakeside YC in Houston), the north (Wisconsin Team ZEITGESIT with Rob Zerban froom Kenosha, WI) and the east (Team STORM with Rick Lyall from Cedar Point YC in Westport, CT).  There were 10 other strong teams mostly from the Chicago area.

Pete Priede, Captain of the southern Lake Michigan Fleet (11), Kevin Saedi and Riccardo Navon  did a remarkable job organizing the championship for the J/109 class, especially considering they had never run a championship event that required crew and sail registration and boat inspections prior to the event.

The class would also like to recognize the tremendous effort put forth by the staff of the Chicago Yacht Club in running the Verve Cup.  The event was very well organized and the racing and social events were top notch. We would also like to recognize the excellent race management offered to the class by Ms. Vickie Matthews, PRO of the B Fleet where the J/109 championship took place.

The competition began on Thursday, August 13th in sunny but very light conditions with winds as low as 2-3kts during the first race.  However they built slowly to the 5-8 knot range and the J/109 fleet was able to get in 3 races.  We were the only fleet racing for four days so we had the B Circle all to ourselves.   At the end of the first day, STORM led with 5 points followed by ZEITGESIT with 9 points and SURPISE/TEAM HAMBURG in third with 10 points.   A different boat won each race.

Friday brought more sunshine and winds of 5-10 kts along  with the addition of another 147 boats to the regatta.  The “big boats” consisting of Great Lakes 70s, Farr 40s and 3 PHRF fleets of 30-50 foot boats competed on Circle A.  Circle B included the Beneteau 40.7s, also racing for their North American title, J/109s, Beneteau 36.7s, a PHRF fleet of 30-40 footers and the J105s.

Racing in the J/109 fleet was again tight with STORM winning the first race, David Gustman’s NORTHSTAR the second and SURPRISE/ TEAM HAMBURG the third.  Friday was also the practice day for the Chicago Air and Water Show so we were occasionally privileged to witness military aircraft racing along the Chicago skyline or circling overhead.  At the end of the day, STORM retained the lead, SURPRISE/ TEAM HAMBURG moved up to second and NORTHSTAR moved into third.

Saturday dawned bright and sunny, with temperatures in the high 80’s.  Winds were again expected to be in the 5-10kt range but actually ended up a bit stronger.  SURPRISE/ TEAM HAMBURG started off strong winning the first race.  REALT NA MARA, crewed by talented Star class sailors Joe and Tom Londrigan who had placed 7th overall in the Chicago-Mackinac race, took the bullet in the second race.  Rob Zerban on ZEITGESIT got the gun in the third race. STORM posted a consistent 2-2-2 to remain in the overall lead, followed by SURPRISE/ TEAM HAMBURG and ZEITGEIST.

Saturday was the first day of the Chicago Air and Water show and there was a huge turnout of spectators boats to the north of Dusable basin.  The wave action from the power boats streaking back and forth and reverberating off the shore caused what could kindly be called a washing machine effect extending out a least a mile offshore.  This made the ride into the dock quite an adventure.

J/109 STORM forecastSunday, the last and final day of the regatta, came with the promise of strong breeze and a chance of thunderstorms. Early forecasts called for 10-15kts with the possibility of 20+ in the mid afternoon with approaching storms.  We soon learned that would prove quite conservative!  The fleet saw 15-20kts on the 6 mile ride out to the racing area and he winds built to 20-25+ kts during the first race.  STORM led around the course and took the gun followed by Jack Toliver’s VANDA III and SURPRISE/ TEAM HAMBURG.  The second race was even more “interesting” as winds built to 25-30kts.  NORTHSTAR sailed a great race and led the fleet around the course to take the bullet.  SURPRISE/ TEAM HAMBURG also sailed a solid race but rounded up on the second downwind leg and managed to hold their position after dropping their kite and finishing with main and jib.  STORM broached on the first downwind leg and dropped from 3rd to 7th at the gate but climbed back to finish 3rd.

Elsewhere on the course there was havoc, with a number of “man overboards” hailed over the VHF.  The race committee hailed the fleet that their 20 foot pin boat had capsized.  The Coast Guard sent a helicopter to rescue three crew who had fallen overboard from a Beneteau 40.7, one of whom had been struck by the boom and was unconscious in the water.  The three were airlifted to a local hospital for medical assistance. We understand all of them were fine the next day.

And then things got even more interesting…..  The winds continued to build on the ride back to the dock.  As the fleet approached the Dusable basin, a squall hit with torrential rain and winds of 50-60kts.  The squall lasted only a few terrifying minutes but there was essentially zero visibility as the crews struggled to shorten or douse sails.  Everyone made it back to the dock completely drenched, some with damaged sails, but generally pleased to have participated in such a great regatta.

This was clearly a terrific North American Championship for the J/109 fleet.  We raced in virtually all conditions that ranged from shifty, light 5kts or less all the way up to a challenging 30kt hang on and hike hard full on blow. Racing was generally very close with tight starts and mark roundings.   Five different boats held on to win races.  Chicago was a great venue for this event and we certainly look forward to holding another championship there.   Photo Credits- Angela Solomon    For more info

J/24 classic sailboat regatta on San Francisco BayPlastic Classic Regatta

The PHANTOM J/24 Rides Again!

(San Francisco, CA- July 18th)-  The Bay View Boat Club held it's 25th Silver Anniversary Plastic Classic Regatta on San Francisco Bay.  The Plastic Classic Regatta is for fiberglass sailboats whose designs are over 25 years old.  The race is a reverse handicap over a 10.9nm course.  This years race had 54 entries and was won for the third consecutive time by the J-24 PHANTOM sailed by John Gulliford.  Other entries included Tartan 10, Santana 35, Choate 27, and Carrera 38.  PHANTOM corrected out almost 5 minutes ahead of the 2nd place Tartan 10.  John has owned his J-24 PHANTOM since 1980 and regularly sails the distance races in San Francisco Bay.  PHANTOM also won the Island Yacht Club 31nm Silver Eaglet Race on July 11, 2009, winning it four out of the last five times.

J/105s racing offshoreWorld Match Race Record

J/105s Set Guinness World Record?

(Stamford, CT)- Since the International Sailing Federation and its record keeping watchdog, the World Sailing Speed Record Council, have stated that they only want to oversee the big time speed records, who is going to pick up the slack for allthe other historic milestones in the sport of sailing?

The scope of Guinness World Records is just too varied, as they simply cannot be sufficiently expert to fully grasp the details of a record like this recent claim, where Kevin Grainger is believed to be the winner of the Longest J/105 Match Race when his GUMPTION3 (USA 59) faced off against Damian Emery and ECLIPSE (USA 50) in the 47.6-mile Stamford Yacht Club Overnight Race on August 21-22.

Who will ratify this record? Read the full report here at Scuttlebutt.


What friends, alumni and crew of J/Boats are doing worldwide

* Peter and Christine Van Alstine are headed off on year-long cruise with their two very cute kids, Hayden and Jennifer on their J/44 STOLEN HOUR.  They're cruising from New England, down the Intra-coastal waterway to Florida and then the Carribean.  If you have any thoughtful help/ commentary, we're sure they are open to all kinds of great pearls of wisdom.  Don't hesitate to send your ideas/ thoughts to them at --  The sailing blog is at:

Man on the moon* Man On The Moon-  Oooops- some of you asked what America really did on the Moon.  Was it a great golf shot?  Was it just planting the Stars & Stripes on the surface?  Was it just to collect a few rocks?  The debate still rages, spurring some wild speculation, of course.  Nevertheless, as the musician STING once sang so eloquently many moons ago, their lyrics for their eponymous "Man on the Moon" song was inspired by this image- somewhat ghostly, somewhat fantastic, somewhat surreal, somewhat stark.  You choose.  Here's what's purported to be the real "man on the moon"- "Buzz" Aldrin.  You dude, can ya jump??

* Laser Worlds Master Regatta- a few intrepid souls are mastering failing lower backs and busted knees and bruised egos to lay waste to a relatively large fleet of premature geriatics in Nova Scotia.  Incredibly, friends like Andy Roy and Scott Ferguson are in the top THREE!  Yowza!  Now, between them and the 505 Worlds post-Viagra crowd, it's remarkable that such talents are at polar opposites on the continental divide in North America.  Why couldn't they all join together?  Hmm, maybe one day the founders of the U.S. Youth Championships will be inspired to create the U.S. Masters Championships-- sponsored by none other than???  Gee, anything that encompasses eternal youth, infinite wisdom, extraordinary virility, aspirational adventurers, profound knowledge and stupefying demographics?  ROLEX, perhaps?  Or, makers of ginormous carbon poles like HALL SPARS that supply BMW/ORACLE's monster 120 foot long sailing trimaran that only does 32 knots in 9 knots of wind??

Featured Boat

J/80 racing in Solent off Isle of Wight, England

Stock J/80s are 1-2 at the 2009 J/80 Worlds

“Race-ready” and “fast out-of-the-box” take on a whole new meaning with the J/80.  Consider that in this year’s J/80 World Championship in Spain, the 1st and 2nd place teams (out of 132) raced newly built, un-modified charter boats supplied by the local J/Dealer.  No time in advance with the boat, no time to even think about changing anything – just add sails and go.  The Worlds winners sailed an incredible regatta in dynamic conditions, but isn’t it great to know you can hop aboard a new boat in a competitive class without having to complete a laundry list of items to get up to speed?  Several are just completing in Bristol, RI - Base Price- $49,900.  Please contact J/Boats or your nearest J dealer for details.

About J/Boats

Started in 1977, J/Boats continues to lead the world in designing fun-to-sail, easy-to-handle, performance sailboats that can be enjoyed by a broad spectrum of sailors. The International J/24 has become the most popular recreational offshore keelboat in the world with over 5,400 J/24s cruising the waves. Today, there are 13,000+ J/Boats, ranging from the International J/22 to the J/65 and ranging in style from one-designs to racers, cruisers to daysailers and, of course, the ubiquitous J sprit boats- J/Boats' innovation in 1992 for easy-to-use asymmetric spinnakers and retractable carbon bowsprits (J/80, J/92, J/95, J/105, J/109, J/110, J/120, J/122, J/130, J/133, J/125, J/145, J/160).

J/Boats has the best track record in sailing for innovation and design as evidenced by: 11 Sailing World/ Cruising World Boat of the Year Awards in 14 years; 2 SAIL Awards for Industry Leadership; 2 American Sailboat Hall of Fame Designs (J/24 & J/35); and the three largest ISAF International One-Design keelboat classes (J/22, J/24, J/80).

Counting crew, every year there are over 100,000 friends to meet sailing J's, populating the most beautiful sailing harbors in 35+ countries around the world. Sailing is all about friends. Come join us and expand your social network everywhere!   For background info.