Wednesday, December 8, 2010

J/Newsletter- December 8th, 2010

J/108 & J/97 At Paris Show
(Paris, France)- Ready for a quick, romantic, fun trip to Paris?  Surprise your significant other and take a quick trip to the enchanted city on the Seine.  From now until 13th December, take a peak at the new J/108 shoal-draft performance cruiser, the latest in a series of performance sailboats aimed at the "other" 90% of the Earth's sailing surface.  Find out why you can cruise in comfort, enjoy legendary J performance and sail in just 4.0' feet of water....where parrot fish go hunting for your toes!  

And, for those inclined for a spot of racing mixed in with cruising, find out what's causing quite a stir on the race courses in France and England this past summer-- the J/97 has won just about every major regatta it has entered in Europe.  After competitive sailors look at the interior of the J/97, the response is nearly always the same, "wow, we can't believe you kicked our butts with all that furniture, you beat us fair and square with Mums living room!".  Learn more about why this family rocketship at the Paris Show is such a "sleeper".  For more J/108 info ( and J/97 info (

J/Sailing Calendar 2011Heaven In '11- The J/Calendar
The Only Sailing Calendar That's "Green" Worldwide
(Newport, RI)- Impress your High Street friends, or just those who live around the corner in the "hood".  Give them the 2011 J/Sailing Calendar and watch them break out into a huge grin and wonder why they're not sailing a J with you! Other than a pint of Guinness or their favorite vintage wine, the easiest recruiting tool in the world to get them sailing with you!  

Whether you are a cruising, racing or armchair sailor, these stunning sailboat photographs will transport you and your buddies to wonderful sailing experiences in exotic places. The 2011 J/Calendar features more photos of flying J's slicing and dicing waves around the world.  Or, just cruising past some of the most spectacular scenery our little "green" planet has to offer.  For those who love the sailing lifestyle, it's the ultimate sailing gift for your friends and family.  Get them now before it's too late for the Holidays!  We print and ship locally (to be very "green" and eco-friendly)-- EuropeUK/ IrelandAustralia/ NZUSA/ Mexico, Canada.  The world's lowest carbon footprint for a paper-produced sailing calendar.  For more 2011 J/Sailing Calendar information.

J/97 IRC cruiser racer sailboat- sailing upwind on SolentJ/111 & J/97 At London Show
(London, England)- The new J/111 and the J/97 will be starring on the Key Yachting stand (H69) at the London Boat Show which runs from Friday January 7th 2011 to Sunday January 16th. The J/80 Sportsboat will be on berth M15 of the indoor boardwalk feature.  The new J/111 makes her European debut at the London show and you can expect this new 36 footer to be one of the biggest draws. The momentum behind the launch of the J/111 has been astonishing, with 50+ boats ordered just 6 weeks after hull number 1 was launched! For the UK and Ireland things look promising with six boats already sold and there is tremendous interest from prospective owners and their crews. The J/111's first North American Championship will be held at Key West in January 2012 and the first European championship at Cowes in August 2012.

In the two seasons since the launch of the J/97 she has proved herself, time and time again. Fifteen J/97s have been sold in the UK in just under a year and 2011 will see the launch of the J/97’s UK Class One-Design Regatta Series, with the inaugural J/97 UK National Championships scheduled to be held during the 2011 J-Cup in Guernsey in July. Full standing headroom, a proper galley, chart table and every other creature comfort one would need and all in a J with a proven track record! BTW, the forepeak is a "romper room" for those so inclined!   For more information contact Paul or Becci at Key Yachting at +44(023)-8045-5669, or visit

J/111 one-design racer cruiser one-design sailboat- sailing upwind in San FranciscoJ/111 Owners Having Fun!
San Francisco Bay Debut + The Ultimate 111 Sailing Experience (So Far)
(San Francisco, CA)- First, Erik Simonson reports, "Sometimes good things come to those who wait. In this case, the arrival of hull number 4 off the J-Boats Production line to the West Coast has proven to be the case. Frank Slootman has enjoyed his J-90 immensely, it’s lines, rating and performance did all he could have hoped. What it was lacking was accommodations and a little luxury which would make his better half happy....The rumors of a newer production racer-cruiser from J-Boats had begun, which were right in the target range of 36-38 foot. After talking with J-Boats and reviewing the drawings, Frank was convinced the boat would "provide the thrills of a pedigree along with some of the creature comforts" he sought. Soon, SANTA delivered a new sleigh to the Slootman residence in the form of INVISIBLE HAND fresh from Bristol R.I."   Read more, see more photos and watch the video here on Erik's site about Frank's INVISIBLE HAND interview.

Second, what may surprise a few sailors out there, perhaps, is that a 72 year old Canadian (actually, a Nova Scotian) who's sailed a variety of J's over time is taking delivery of 111 #23, after an exhilarating, adrenalin-pumping, get yer "ya-yas-out", 20+ plus knot ride on 111 #5.  Really?  Skeptics be damned.  Anyone of any age can sail the 111 with finger-tip control and feel confident sailing it upwind or downwind, light air or with breeze on.  Check these videos out.  Real People.  Real Men.  Real Women.  Real Fun.  Exotic, too, in French and English!  The Ultimate 111 Sailing Experience in Nova Scotia.

J/Sailing Calendar 2011J/80 Worlds Holiday Special
(Auckland, New Zealand)- By popular demand, Outside Images and Paul Todd are offering a 50% Off Happy Holiday Special!  J/80 sailors can't get enough of those wild, extraordinary J/80 photos from the J/80 Worlds 2010 on Paul's  Now, there's a coupon for 50% off 3 or more images purchased from now until the end of January 2011.  Go to, order your images, then apply the coupon code at checkout- "christmasj80".  Enjoy a colorful Christmas 2010!

J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

With the holidays just around the corner, it's time to to shop for a few gifts for your family and friends.  An easy one to start with is the new 2011 J/Calendar with lots of gorgeous photos of J's around the world.  While you're dreaming of far away places to sail, you can also be considering some cool events to attend in '11 or perhaps consider a big gift to share with your friends and family- a new J! For that gift idea, you can wander over to the upcoming sailboat shows, like Paris, London or Miami to browse the new J's that have been in the news.

In the meantime, J sailors are winding up 2010 with a lot of activity East, West, North, South and a few points in between.  The current poster child, the new J/111, made its debut in several places worldwide nearly simultaneously.  You've probably seen the Nova Scotia experience, but there's an added wrinkle to that story (video link below).  Then in successive weekends, the 111 went for a sail in the Solent, England, in San Diego and San Francisco, California.  In Europe, the Ice Cup sailors are still crowing about their hot racing in J/92s' off a chilly, snowy Stockholm.  The Hamble Winter Series concluded with some remarkable performances, not just the 111's, but also the J/109's and the J/97!  Way East, the J/80s dialed up the action in Xiamen, China with their "Winter Series". In nearby Phuket, Thailand, a J/133 is enjoying the King's Cup.  And Down Under, the J/122 repeated last year's solid performance in the Sydney Short Offshore Racing series.

Read on!  The J/Community and Cruising section below have more interesting, and heart-warming, stories this week.  In particular, read about Bob Fisher (a long-time icon in the J/24 class) and the Sailing Family of the Year award for the Storck Family from New York.  Check them out!  More importantly, if you have more J/Regatta News, please email it or upload onto our J/Boats Facebook page!  Below are the summaries.  Sailing photo credit- Paul Wyeth/

Regatta & Show Schedules:

Dec 5-13- Paris Sailboat Show- Paris, France-
Jan 7-16- London Boatshow- London, England-
Jan 10-14- J/24 Australian Nationals- Sydney, OZ-
Jan 17-21- J/80 Midwinters- Key West, FL-
Jan 17-21- J/105 Midwinters- Key West, FL-
Jan 17-21- J/95 Midwinters- Key West, FL-
Jan 17-21- Key West Race Week- Key West, FL- http://www.
Feb 4-12- Miami Boatshow- Miami, FL-
Feb 12-16- J/24 Midwinters- Davis Is YC, Tampa, FL-
Feb 18-20- SW NOOD- St Petersburg, FL- StPYC-
Feb 24-26- J/22 Midwinters- Davis Is YC, Tampa, FL-
Mar 9-11- J/30 Mardi Gras Midwinters- New Orleans, LA-
Mar 13-Apr 17- Warsash Spring Series- Hamble, UK-
Mar 18-20- SW NOOD- San Diego, CA-
For additional J/Regatta and Event dates in your region, please refer to the on-line J/Sailing Calendar.

J/111 sailing on Solent, near Hamble, Southampton, EnglandJ/111 Skating Into England
(Hamble, Southampton)- On a wing and a prayer, the J/111 arrived in Felixstowe on the NW side of England as deck cargo on a snowy, icy day.  Next step, go sailing in 3 days? Shades of the infamous launching of the famous J/44 J-HAWK a decade or so ago.  The 111 ARABELLA landed with some degree of both anxiety and anticipation.  It didn't take long to determine the 111 was one hot boat.  On its first time out on the Solent she didn't disappoint.  

On a shifty 10-15 knot breeze on the Solent, ARABELLA quickly made its presence felt.  ARABELLA (1.091 TCF), sailed by Niall Dowling and John Cunningham, won by 5 minutes corrected time in IRC 0 class over a Ker 11.3 (1.159 TCF), Arcona 430 and a Comet 41s on a shortened course!  

Here's the report from Paul Heys-  "J/111 #6 arrived here in Hamble, after dark on Thursday night, following a 7 hr road trip from the Liverpool shipping port, England was covered with 6" of snow.

First light Friday saw a small army at work on the boat in a snow covered boatyard: Desty Marine installed the keel and rudder, HME fitted the BG sailing instruments, Stuart Miller and Jerry Eplett dressed and stepped the mast. The hoist and crane guys at Hamble Point Marina gave us great service. The boat and rig went together beautifully, many thanks to the boatbuilders at CCF and the team at Hall Spars."

By 3 pm that afternoon having had the Yanmar engine PDI inspected, we were motoring up the river calibrating the instruments, with proud owner Niall Dowling at the helm. We met up with James Knight and Jeremy Robinson from North and bent on the main and checked the jib for fit, just as daylight ended.

Saturday saw us out sailing for 4 hrs in 2 sessions of light winds and very cold rain, all went well.  Sunday 8 am, off the dock for our maiden race, the final one of the Garmin Hamble winter Series.

Niall was on the helm and had brought 2 of his crew, the rest of the crew was from J/Uk and the sailmaking and commissioning team. Conditions were flat water, with a 6-8 knot Northerly breeze. Sailing around pre start we found that the wind was shifting through 40- 50 degrees.

The PRO set a 3 lap windward leeward. Off the start line the tide dictated an immediate tack onto port, we were one of the first to go. We could see that the J/111 was powering up earlier than the heavier Arcona 43, First 44.7 and Comet 41. The high aspect rig seems very efficient.  Scratch boat in the fleet is the Ker 11.3 Paragon that rates 60 IRC points more than the J/111. Paragon was the only other boat that seemed powered up in the 8 knot gusts. Paragon led us to the top mark, by a minute or so, this delta quickly reduced as the J/111 sailed faster downwind.  Thereafter, the Ker and J stepped away from the rest of the fleet, with the Ker’s lead extending and contracting dependent upon who had the best pressure.

With a mist rolling over the course and a softening of the breeze, the race was shortened at the 3rd windward mark.  The J was 1 minute 20 behind the Ker and a long distance ahead of the third boat. After IRC handicaps had been applied, ARABELLA had won her maiden race by 5 minutes.  In short, a bit of luck, plus it never hurts to have all the bits and pieces come together."

J/80 sailing at Hamble Winter SeriesFoggy Hamble Winter Series Finale
JIKA-JIKA and J-DREAM Co-Winners Overall?
(Hamble, England)-  While some dry-sailed boats were trapped ashore after last week's snow and ice, those crews that ventured out for the final day of the 2010 Garmin Hamble Winter Series had not only to deal with fog, but also a gradually dying northerly breeze. Even the steadily falling temperature failed to dampen the enthusiasm of both Black and White fleet competitors, intent on securing a good result in the overall standings.

Poor visibility meant that Race Director Jamie Wilkinson and his team aboard Tony Lovell's 'Bonney' were unable to see the outer distance mark so a RIB was despatched to the midpoint to create a split start line for the Black Fleet. Meanwhile Philip Gage aboard 'Knight's Challenge' at the pin end had switched on his radar to detect OCS boats.

Thankfully these were few in number and all seven classes got away first time, with the Fastnet Insurance and East Bramble buoys as windward marks, before returning downwind through the fierce ebb tide to leeward marks on the Ryde Middle. Despite the tidal offset in the course some boats lost out by not making enough easting early in the run, and this was made worse by the light breeze that was sometimes down to 2 knots.

Responding to the slow pace of the racing, all classes had their courses shortened, and once more the technology aboard Knight's Challenge was being put to use. By then the fog had cleared but some boats were being identified using AIS as they approached the finish line and before their sail numbers became visible.

Although the overall winners of most classes had been settled the previous week, as expected the front-runners for the Garmin Yacht of the Year Award were out again to consolidate their results.  Of the other contenders David and Kirsty Apthorp's J-DREAM slipped to second place behind Richard and Valerie Griffith's OUTRAJEOUS in the J/109 class, while Mike and Jamie Holmes JIKA-JIKA in IRC3 took a 20% penalty dropping her to fifth, and providing an opener for others to gain on them.

Overall, J-DREAM won the J/109 class with 11 points.  David McLeman on OFFBEAT finished 2nd with 25 points, third was Richard's and Valerie's OUTRAJEOUS, 4th ARIA's Luca Rubinelli with 32 points and 5th ME JULIE's Dom Monkhouse.

J/97 offshore cruising racing sailboat on Solent, Hamble, Cowes, EnglandAs many of you know by now, IRC Class 3 was dominated by the J/97 JIKA-JIKA (seen here) sailed by Mike and Jamie Holmes, they finished with eight 1sts and a 3rd for 11 pts!   Sailing a nice series and not far off the pace lying 5th is the J/110 SHADES OF BLUE sailed by Ed Holton.  In the 12th and final race of the series, Bill Blain finally got his J/97 BATFISH IV rolling and sailed well to get a 3rd, sistership JIKA-JIKA won the race but was assessed a 20% scoring penalty.

In the White Fleet, despite the shifty breezes, the J/80s managed to behave respectably and get off 3 quick races.  Sweeping all three were John Cooper's OI!, thus affirming their grip on the top of the podium.   Overall in 2nd was AQUA J- Patrick Liardet and 3rd is SWALLOW- Gordon Craigen.

Over in IRC Class 2, there have been four J/105s racing and they are 7-8-9-10 in class dueling with one another for one-design "Top Dog". In the fray are JACKPOT sailed by Vernon Bradley in 7th, JOS OF HAMBLE skippered by Professor Roger Williams in 8th, JOURNEYMAKER 5 sailed by Chris Jones in 9th and JOLENE with Ivan and Peter Trotman leading the charge lying 10th.  In fact, in the 12th and last race of the series, the J/105s nearly swept the top 5, getting 1st- JACKPOT, 3rd- JOURNEYMAKER 5, 4th- JOLENE and 5th- JOS OF HAMBLE.

Given the fact that both the J/97 JIKA-JIKA and the J/109 J-DREAM both sailed solid series in two of the largest and most competitive classes, it will be hard to determine the Garmin Yacht of the Year at the overall prize giving on Saturday December 11th.  Report contributed by Jonty Sherwill.  Full sailing details of the 2010 Garmin Hamble Winter SeriesSailing photos courtesy- Paul Wyeth/

J/122 JACKPOT sailing offshore in Australia, off Sydney Harbour Heads.Australian J/122 Wins Silver Again!
(Sydney, Australia)- A bit like the infamous "Energizer Bunny" on American TV, the J/122 is seemingly indomitable and indefatigable on the world's Seven Seas.  And nowhere can it be much harder to bring home the silver than to compete in Australia's offshore circuit with lots of custom IRC designs that are all designed to act like Aussie 18s offshore and plane away to Cape Horn way, way, way, way East at 100 knots.  As one might expect, at some point you have to "turn the corner".  That's when "real sailboats" designed with realistic "balance" come into their own.  The J/122 sailing in Sydney has bee there, done that.

Like last year, Ray Entwistle's J/122 JACKPOT has finished the CYCA’s Spring Short Ocean Point Score series in the silverware again.  Following on from JACKPOT's previous SOP’s series results of two firsts and a second they again finished equal 1st on points with a Swan 60 and a Beneteau 45. "The J/122 is amazing, she just keeps bringing in the results," said a very pleased Entwistle after Saturdays spring series finale. "At forty feet she is definitely  at the smaller end of this highly competitive Division 1 Sydney  fleet but  takes on all comers.  She continues to punch way above her weight with constant top 3 finishes and surprises everyone how well up the fleet she finishes on the water. The added benefit of this incredible boat is the interior.  In  a few minutes we can remove the racing sails, top up the tanks and fridge, add the dodger and go cruising in opulence. We wish all our crew, competitors  the very best for the festive season and thanks to the staff of the Cruising Yacht of Australia, Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron and Middle Harbour Yacht Club who take it in turns week on week to run this competitive offshore series," says Ray.  "JACKPOT will be back for the Autumn Point Score series starting in January and if you would like to taste victory in this highly competitive div one racing then get yourself a J/122 and join us for some fun at the top of the fleet. If racing is not your thing then go cruising, this boat does both in complete style.  Happy Christmas from the J/122 JACKPOT crew"

J/80 sailing in Xiamen, China winter sailing seriesXiamen J/80 Winter series
(Xiamen, China)- The first annual J/80 winter series started this past weekend.  Nine boats are participating in a 7 week series in Xiamen, China.  The event starts each week with a 30 minute lesson followed by boat assignments and then first race at 1:30. No starts after 3:30.  This is open to anyone that would like to join each sunday until the end of January (Space Limited). 58 people showed up for the first event.  Too many for the nine J/80's, but with support boats available everyone was able to have a great time.

There were three races to start the series with each being won by a different boat.  There was a tie for second place and winning the day was David Zhou with 2-1-2.  Current was a major factor in this days racing and consistent starts played a big role with the current pushing most competitors over the line early at least once during the day.  Reports Jim Johnstone, "We look forward to a fun series and the sailors are all quite happy to be on the water regularly in this new series."

J/133 Jing Jing sailing in Kings Cup, Phuket, ThailandKings Cup Phuket
J/133 JING JING Having Fun!
(Phuket, Thailand)- The 24th Phuket King’s Cup didn't exactly start out in postcard, Chamber of Commerce conditions.  The practice day was a bit soggy.  But, the forecast for day one of the King’s Cup is for a west-north-west breeze anywhere between six and 10 knots.  As Tracey Johnstone reported, "Overcast sky, with a hint of rain and no wind greeted the sailors as they headed out onto the race course. Thankfully, a light Northerly filled in enough for the race officers on both courses to get all the classes away on Race 1. Some competitors were a little to keen to get started, with IRC 1 having a general recall and several other classes having multiple individual recalls. This comes with the territory when competitors are pushing to the absolute limit. With the wind direction flicking through forty degrees and fluctuating in intensity, choosing the side of the course and sail selection, which would yield the best results, became a tacticians nightmare. After rounding the top mark the boats that went right were looking famous, that is until the boats that gybe set the spinnaker and went left, picked up the incoming breeze first and crossed in front of the early leaders. The next time around the opposite occurred and as the fleet played snakes and ladders, this is reflected in the final results. PRO Jerry Rollin managed to complete three windward/leeward races for the racing classes, in between intermittent rain showers and the cruising classes completed there one scheduled race in area B to successfully get the regatta underway.  After surviving a general recall and then an individual recall, Rick Pointon's Chinese crew on the J/133 JING JING held on for third overall.

J/133 at starting line - Kings Cup, Phuket, ThailandBy the second day, the King's Cup weather has returned to its traditional light airs where knowing the local conditions, studying the tides and keeping your head out of the boat were all important factors on the first day.  With a postponement flag flying on both courses the Phuket King’s Cup fleet of 106 boats waited patiently this morning for a race start.  Soft breeze, an outgoing tide and heavy cloud made for a difficult start.  Then a rain squall passed over the land and moved out to sea. There was hope some more breeze would come with it, but that didn’t eventuate.   In IRC1 the postponement flag was up briefly while the start line was re-laid, then the 15 boat fleet were off. Three boats were recalled. At the bottom mark first time around, Rick Pointon’s J/133 JING JING executed well to finish in the top five.  In the next race, the wind was equally as shifty, but JING JING hung in for second!  In short, it was a day of costly tactical calls, protest flags and changes in the leader board in the second day racing.  The forecasted 10 plus knots and thunderstorms didn’t eventuate today. Instead the course had low cloud, shifty breezes and at places, two knots of current. All the makings of an interesting day of racing.

The sailing Buddha atop the mountain overlooking the fleet at Kings Cup.By the third day, IRC1 Class had two races. First was a windward/leeward and the second was a long race offshore around the cans.  The long race start was delayed for a short time as the race committee re-set the start line in response to a slight wind shift. Rick's J/133 JING JING was OCS at the start, but recovered well as the fleet headed south. A costly tack to make the mark hurt some boats, including JING JING. Currently, JING JING is in third place with 15 points-- perhaps a chat with Buddha atop the mountain might provide divine inspiration (seen here at right).  Phuket Kings Cup Sailing Photo credits- Guy Nowel.    For more Phuket Kings Cup sailing information.

J/92s sailing off Stockholm, Sweden in Ice CupHot Ice Cup Action
(Stockholm, Sweden)- The J/92s Match Race Center fleet in Stockholm raced their infamous Ice Cup last week.  Jonas Magner took some great photos of the people, the ice, the ice-picks and the action going on in front of their club.  The first order of the day was getting rid of all the ice and snow on deck before the crews could get rolling for the day in just -10 degree C weather.  As we said last week, no question these Vikings are hardy souls, warm at heart, and love to have a great time.  Jonas kindly provides us with some great photos, check out the link here:


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

J/80 Worlds- Storck family sailing past markStorck's Win Scuttlebutt's "Sailing Family of the Year 2010"- Amazing, fellow Jumbo sailors at Tufts (the kids) and enthusiastic J/80 sailors, win Scuttlebutt's first Sailing Family of the Year Award for 2010!  That's cool! Huge! Awesome!  Simply fantastic as far as the J/Community sees it.  The Storck's not only get a commemorative SFOTY trophy (not that they need any more), but they'll get outfitted in gear courtesy of award sponsor Atlantis WeatherGear, Camet International and Harken.

As Scuttlebutt Editor, Craig Leweck, describes, "This is the inaugural year for this award, and based on the sheer number of submissions, this type of recognition is long overdue. During the review process, it quickly became evident that determining a winner would not be the mission of the judges, but rather to recognize one family this year, and to look forward to recognizing many more in the future.

The Storck family received wide spread support though numerous submissions.  One nominee considered them "probably sailing family of the decade".  Another nominee remarked, "As soon as I read the description for this (award), the first family that jumped to mind is the Storck family." A third said, "This is a total no-brainer. Super sailors across the board and nice people. What else could you ask for?" And on and on it went.  We at J/Boats couldn't agree more.

While success in the sport was not a vital component of the award, there is a lot of success in this clan. Whether sailing together, like they did winning the J/80 North Americans and finishing 12th in the World Championship, or following their individual pursuits, the Storck family is
bonded by the sport.

John Storck Jr., has said on many occasions that it is truly a blessing that his four children have taken to sailing with such enthusiasm. However, it is no accident that John III, Erik, Kaity and Ian Storck have come to love sailing as much as their father. All four were introduced to the sport in a positive environment that fostered a passion. He has watched their collective sailing experiences define their individual personalities and the relationships among them. "It's because of the sailing that they're all very close," he says, "and it's because of the sailing that they have the utmost respect for each other, on and off the water."

John and wife Colette brought each child aboard the family cruiser-racer Jonrob, when they were babies. The kids learned the basic fundamentals of sailing while cruising Long Island Sound aboard the Ericson 39, and were later introduced to the competitive side of the sport as crew
for their father when he raced in local events sponsored by Centerport Yacht Club or Lloyd Harbor Yacht Club. "Our kids literally grew up on the Jonrob doing summer cruises and were able to experience sailing in its purest form," Storck said.

All four children attended sailing school to further hone their skills, learning how to steer and trim in the Optimist dinghy and Club 420 classes.  During those years, John Jr and Colette were the absolute antithesis of the infamous "helicopter parents", who push their kids to compete and focus solely on results. "When my kids were junior sailors, I rarely ever went to the regatta unless I was working on the race committee," Storck said. "If John and Erik were doing a big regatta, I would take Kaity and Ian to the zoo. My wife and I never wanted to put any pressure on the kids."    Read more about the 2010 SFOTY - The Storck family.

J/24 and J/105 sailors- Bob Fisher- Lymington, England* Bob Fisher for an OBE Knighthood- Sir Bob? Talk about family! "The Fish" is like a blood-brother, soul, mentor to the J/Family (yes, in spite of the fact we are Pilgrims and Colonialists, even William the Conqueror is part of the mix).  Magnus Wheatley is pushing UK Club Commodores to put forward Bob Fisher for a knighthood.  We agree, it's an honor well-deserved as one of the British Empires most prolific, most knowledgeable, most empathetic, most environmentally sensitive (more on that later) and most thoughtful, respectable gentleman the sport of yachting has seen in at least a "blue moon".... or twelve.  Said Magnus, "Since posting, I have received precisely 100 emails from all over the world in support of The Fish getting a knighthood for services to yachting. Thank you. Now, who's going to be the first Commodore from a British club to email and say they'll put Bob forward?  A friend of mine called from Dubai and we had a cracking chat about all things America's Cup before he rather randomly asked me: "Seeing as it's that time of the year (the Queen's New Year's Honours List is being done right now), who in sailing deserves a knighthood?  The obvious names like Rod Carr and Ben Ainslie were mentioned (but they're just kids) before I said "Bob Fisher" and the more I think about it, the more I'm convinced by my own argument. Bob's the doyenne of sailing journalism worldwide (even Rob Mundle and Peter Montgomery would agree!). He's done everything, seen everything, written everything and is globally admired. He's known by Royalty and the common folk alike and he's still racking up the air miles, traveling the globe to report in his own inimitable style. When Bob speaks, the world listens and these days his musings on the Cup are a must-read. Plus, he can really sail and race too (unlike some others) so his writing is authoritative and most importantly, right. I have a deep admiration for him as a journalist, a sailor and a man."  We agree.  What more does a journalist have to do to get a gong? The sailors seem to be bagging all the MBE's CBE's and OBE's but it's about time we put Bob forward for a knighthood in recognition of an outstanding contribution over more than half a century to the sport.  Gotta love the Fish, he's loved us and the sport since he was a kid.  In fact, I'd be willing to bet even the Storck kids know about "Yachts & Yachting" and those cool reports that guy named "Bob" writes all the time.

The J Cruising Community

J cruising directions- roll the dice and go!  Sailing to anywhere, anytime!J Cruisers continue their adventures around the world, below are a selection of most excellent "blogs" written by their prolific publishers.  Some terribly amusing anecdotes and pearls of wisdom are contained in their blogs. Read some! You'll love it.

* The J/42 JARANA continues their epic voyage around the Pacific. Continue to read about Bill and Kathy Cuffel's big adventure cruising the South Pacific headed for New Zealand.  A recent update from Bill and Kathy- "Hello, all!  We have safely arrived in Opua, New Zealand from Tonga. It was a remarkably fast passage. Some statistics: Time: 6 days, 3 hours.  Total distance: 1023 miles.  Distance sailed: 1020 miles.  Distance motored: 3 miles.  Average speed: 7.0 knots.  Fuel used: 3 gallons (12 hours of engine idling for power generation).  Best memory: sailing into the Bay of Isles, hand steering in 25 knots of breeze, watching the sun rise behind us, lighting Cape Brett up in a warm red glow. Next is New Zealand!" Their blog is here:

* Prolific writers, Bill and Judy Stellin, sailed their J/42 JAYWALKER around the Mediterranean and Europe and back across the Atlantic for nearly three years.  Their blogs/journals can be found at-  The earlier journals have been compiled into two self published books which can be found at:  Search for "SEATREK: A Passion for Sailing" by Bill Stellin or William Stellin."  Fun reading when rocking back in a chair watching your storm-lashed windows take a beating in the gale roaring outside and listening to the crackle of a roaring fire.  It is winter "down under" you know.  The Argentineans are freezing.

J/130 sailing ARC Rally arrives Portugal- leave a message on the sea wall!* John and Mary Driver are sailing their J/130 SHAZAM for extended cruising in the Atlantic basin. At this time, John and Mary will have just finished their double-handed crossing of the Atlantic, landing in Portugal on their J/130 Shazam after completion of their ARC Rally. Read the latest news at

* Several J/160 owners are island hopping across the world's oceans, fulfilling life long dreams to cruise the Pacific islands, the Caribbean islands, the Indian Ocean and all points in between.  Anyone for Cape Horn and penguins??  Read more about their adventures and escapades (like our J/109 GAIA, J/42s PAX and JAYWALKER and J/130 SHAZAM friends above).

J/160 land tender- 1944 vintage Willies Jeep!!SALACIA, the J/160 owned by Stephen and Cyndy Everett has an on-going blog describing some of their more amusing experiences (   A recent excerpt- "Stephen and Ross were enthralled by Roger's "Willies 1942 WW2 American jeep". Both boys took it for a burn and one is now at the top of Stephen’s wish list. When Roger was restoring it he was delighted to find a genuine WW2 American Hard hat under the back seat...."

-  Bill and Susan Grun on the J/160 AVANTE are also sailing in the Pacific archipelago, read more about their great adventures on their blog (  Check out there recent travels- now past Fiji!  A recent excerpt- "Things Unplanned Run Amuck in Tahiti- Boats have feelings, don’t you know?  They do not like to be left alone, unattended and seemingly unloved.  This is a fact of which both The Captain and The First Mate are well aware, but given their lifestyle, they have no choice.  Avante must go it alone every once in a while, and they know they eventually will have to deal with nautical hurt feelings and the consequences which follow."  The rest of the thread is both humorous and quite educational- many lessons learned!

* Long-distance cruising communications advice for those who wish to be connected beyond a cell phone/ WiFi connection (10 miles) anywhere on the planet- try a remarkable SSB communications network good for up to 5,000 Nautical MILES of connectivity! How cool is that!  Founded by renowned superstar navigator Stan Honey and friends, here's good info for long-distance datacomm fanatics.  Stan says, "SailMail has worldwide coverage, but as with any HF propagation, you have to be knowledgeable about selection of which station to use, what time of day, and what frequency.  The only holes in coverage worldwide would be a very noisy marina where battery chargers on nearby boats prevent SailMail use.  In those situations most folks use WiFi or GSM anyway, and use SailMail when they are at sea, or in most remote anchorages.  There is lots of information on the website at about SSB choice and modem choice.  The Icom M802 radio and AT140 tuner are currently the best choice."

Featured Boats

J/122 SKYE- racer cruiser one-design sailboat from Chicago, Lake MichiganJ/122 SKYE- Triple Mac Race Winner For Sale

Possibly the best equipped and fastest short-handed 40 foot racer-cruiser in the world! SKYE is the Chicago-Mackinac Race Winner in 2008 (fully crewed) and the 2009 and 2010 Double-handed winner overall!  This IRC-friendly 40 footer offers a perfect, completely furnished interior with all the canvas protection covers for the bright-work while racing.  As a fresh-water boat it has been immaculately maintained to "Bristol" condition.  It features two flip-up pilot berths in the main cabin and gimbaled LPG stove/oven.  The B&G 3000 system includes a Garmin 3210 chart plotter, three 20/20s on the mast, lots of readouts everywhere, plus a Hercules H3000 autopilot system  with the H3000 gyro- an awesome short-handed sailing system! Sail inventory is all North Sails 3DL carbon, including 2 mains, 6 jibs, Code 0 and 2 spinnakers (Norlite runner and AirX reacher)- blue and white colors.  Hull is white with double-blue boot-stripe and white racing bottom paint.  For more info call Richie Stearns at Stearns Boating- ph- +1-847-404-2209 or email-

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:  15 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 and sailing the waters of 35+ countries around the world.  Sailing is all about friends.  Come join us and expand your social network everywhere!    For more information on J/Boats.

Read Kimball Livingston's SAIL update on the J/Boats story- A Band of Brothers.