Wednesday, May 4, 2011

J/Newsletter- May 4th, 2011

J/80 one-design sailboat- sailng off Newport, RIJ/80 Circuit Returns to Newport!
(Newport, RI)- Following up on the wildly successful 2010 Worlds, J/80's will be back in Newport this summer for 3 great events over a two week period. First up is the inaugural Newport edition of Bacardi's international sport boat event Bacardi Newport Sailing Week June 23-26.  On July 8th there will be a one day advanced J/80 speed clinic providing a great opportunity for teams to address any weaknesses from the Bacardi regatta and tune-up for the final event on the Newport mini circuit.  The annual Newport Regatta will take place July 9-10.   All three events will be run from Sail Newport's facilities at Fort Adams Park with storage available enabling competitors to rig once and focus on sailing. Register today!  Photo credit- Paul Todd- Outside Images NZ.
     Bacardi Newport Sailing Week June 23 - 26-
     J/80 Speed Clinic- July 8th- email-
     SailNewport Regatta - July 9-10-

J/80 one-design sailboat- sailing off Palma, Mallorca and Catedrale La SeuJ/80 Copa de Espana Features Olympic & World Champions
(Palma Mallorca, Spain)- This weekend's Copa de Espana for the J/80 class in Spain is nearly as competitive as a J/80 World championship, especially since many of the top J/80 teams worldwide come from Spain. Hosted by the Real Club Nautico de Palma, the thirty teams will be competing on Palma's gorgeous bay, with spectacular green mountains as a backdrop and the famous Cathedral La Seu along the waterfront, it will surely create a memorable and beautiful canvas for those sailing this weekend in Palma.

J/80 one-design sailboat- sailng upwind at PalmaVelaAs a reflection of the fact that the J/80 has grown into the most important one-design racing boat in Spain, there will be many highly competitive teams taking part in this year's regatta, including many top Olympic and World-class sailors.  Featuring amongst them will be HOTEL PRINCESA YAIZA skippered by ex-J/80 World Champion Rayco Tabares Alvarez from the Canary Islands.  Also sailing is another J/80 World Champion, NEXTEL ENGINEERING, skippered  by Ignacio Camino and Armando Gutierrez.  Rounding out some of the potential leaders will be local Palma team PORTCALL COMPOSITES led by Jose Carlos Frau Greenfield, the recent PalmaVela winners MAPFRE with Carlos Martinez and crew hoping to repeat their performance; Barcelona 1992 Gold Medallist Jose María van der Ploeg will take the helm of the J/80 GREAT SAILING; Montreal 1976 Silver Medallist Toño Gorostegui will be onboard CANTABRIA INFINITA; and Portuguese sailor Hugo Rocha, Bronze Medallist in Atlanta 1996, will skipper TURISMO DO ALGARVE.  For more Copa de Espana J/80 sailing informationSailing photo credits-

J/24 one-design sailboat- sailing past markJ/24 LayLine US Nationals
(Dallas, TX)- The 2011 J/24 US Nationals are being held in Dallas, Texas and hosted by the Dallas Corinthian YC.  It will be fun, challenging lake sailing with weather largely driven by frontal systems and gradient winds (no such thing as a thermal here).  The 25 registered competitors will be treated like kings by their Texas hosts, DCYC is renowned for their excellent race management and even better social events ashore!  A very competitive fleet is assembling for this Nationals, including last year's winner Pat Toole from Santa Barbara YC sailing THREE BIG DOGS.  Giving them a run for the roses will be top Mexican J/24 sailor Jorge Murrieta from Cantiere Navale Valle Bravo, that gorgeous lake in the mountains west of Mexico City.  Also sure to factor into the leader board will be Chip Till racing Murder Inc/Team Layline from North Carolina; current J/24 World Champion from Brazil, Mauricio Santa Cruz who recently won the Trofeo Accademia Navale in Livorno, Italy; and Chris Jankowski on STREET LEGAL fresh from two good performances in STS Charleston Race Week and STS Annapolis NOOD, amongst others.  For more J/24 US Nationals sailing information

sailboats in formationJ/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

As spring rolls along in the northern parts, fall's slowly making its presence felt down under!  Imagine this, while America was surviving a record tornado outbreak in the midwest and southeast (including an F4 tornado that wandered along a "crazy ivan" path of destruction for nearly 300 miles), our sailing friends Down Under in New Zealand saw a burst of water spouts and a tornado that hit northeastern Auckland!  Goodness gracious, what's happening in our crazy world?  Well, sailing must go on and the best part about it?  Sailing is not only a fun escape with family and friends, but in the spirit of Earth Day this past week, it's just about the "greenest" form of outdoor activity you can do, other than walking, running or riding a bike.  Our friends in the Caribbean were certainly enjoying themselves, experiencing that wonderful event known as Antigua Sailing Week.  Over in the European theater, the J/22s, J/24s and J/80s are all dialing themselves up for major events coming in the near future.  And speaking of theater, it seemed that the first RORC Series, the Cervantes Trophy Race, was approaching the "theater of the absurd" (e.g. not one forecast was right).  And, speaking of forecasts, it really was the theater of the absurd in some American regattas.  Sailing on the Chesapeake Bay was more than challenging, it was nearly schizophrenic! Annapolis YC was playing host to the Sperry Topsider Annapolis NOOD Regatta that saw an entire naval flotilla of J's- J/22, J/24, J/80, J/30, J/35, J/105, J/109 all racing one-design. Further north, the American YC was hosting their highly regarded Spring Series on Long Island Sound.  On the "left coast" of America, San Diego YC hosted their eponymous Yachting Cup regatta with one-design racing for J/80s, J/105s and J/120s and PHRF handicap for others.  Read on! The J/Community and Cruising section below continue to enjoy the Caribbean and the South Pacific, staying warm while others are trying to stay warm up north.   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.

Regatta & Show Schedules:

May 5-8- J/80 Copa de Espana- Palma Mallorca, Spain-
May 10-14- J/24 Nationals- Dallas, TX-
May 14-15- J/109 Vice Admirals Cup- Cowes, England-
May 14-15- Ahmanson Cup- Newport Beach, CA-
May 14-15- J/109 Vice Admirals Cup- Cowes, England-
May 20-22- STS Seattle NOOD- Seattle, WA-
May 27- STC Block Island Race- Stamford, CT-
Jun 3- Annapolis-Newport Race- Annapolis, MD-
Jun 12-19- Rolex Giraglia Cup- Genoa, Italy-
Jun 18-22- Kieler Woche Regatta- Kiel, Germany-

For additional J/Regatta and Event dates in your region, please refer to the on-line J/Sailing Calendar.

J/120 one-design cruising racing sailboat- sailing downwindYachting Cup San Diego
Fun-racing J/80, J/105 & J/120 Fleets
(San Diego, CA)- 2011 marks the 39th year of San Diego Yacht Club's signature regatta, the Yachting Cup. This premiere regatta brings together competitive fleet and one-design racing at multiple venues on courses both inshore and offshore San Diego. This year saw 89 boats participate in 12 fleets, J's accounted for 33 boats (37% of the total) in 5 fleets- 4 in PHRF, 6 in J/120s, 16 in J/105s and 7 in J/80s.

J/120 racer cruiser sailboat- the ultimate sailing offshore sailboatThe J/120 crowd are a bunch of tough hombres, as usual.  Past multiple J/120 winners like CAPER and CC RIDER were always going to be tough to beat.  And, they proved that again this year.  After leading off with three straight bullets, John Laun's CAPER was going to be very tough to knock off the top of the podium.  While Chuck Nichol's team on CC RIDER won the last two races, it was not enough to overcome the nearly unassailable lead set by CAPER.  John's crew sailed to a very strong 1-1-1-2-2 for 7 pts and Chuck's crew sailed to a 3-2-2-1-1 for 9 pts.  While the drama was unfolding upfront, perhaps more drama was unfolding in the fight for the bronze position.  Steve Harris' TAMAJAMA, Mike Hatch's J-ALMIGHTY and Peter Zarcades' MELTEMI were flip-flopping for 3rd position contention virtually every race.  After five races, just two points separated all three boats!  No question the last race was a nail-biting, anxiety-driven, manic depression-inducing situation for the tacticians.  Earning his keep at the end was Steve's TAMAJAMA tactician, ending up with a 2-7-3-5-3 for 20 pts to snag third position.

J/105 one-design ultimate sailing boat- racing offshoreLike their counterparts in the STS Annapolis NOOD Regatta taking place on the "right coast", the "left coast" J/105s had several tight fought races for the top 2, 3rd and 4th and for 5th overall.  In the Case case, Dennis and Sharon Case on WINGS were not able to overcome the performance of the well-sailed team aboard Rick Goebel's SANITY- a first for Rick?  SANITY sailed to a 5-2-1-2-2 to win with 12 pts.  Second were the Case's on WINGS with a 1-1-6-1-4 with 13 pts.  Similarly, the BLOW BOAT and PHOLLY tussle went all the way down to the wire with perhaps the Case's and Goebel acting as surrogate spoilers in this drama.  In the end, on a tiebreaker, Tom Hurlburt sailing BLOW BOAT finished 3rd with a 2-5-3-7-1 tally for 18 pts.  And, Chris Logan's PHOLLY got the short end of the straw to finish 4th with a 3-3-5-4-3 for 18 pts.  Fifth place also had its dramas between three boats!  Steve and Lucy Howell's BLINK!, Dave Vieregg's TRIPLE PLAY and Fisher Dagostino's VIGGEN all finished just points behind Jon Dekker's AIR BOSS who finished 5th with 4-4-8-11-5 for 32 pts.

J/80 one-design sailboat- the ultimate sailing boat for CaliforniaThe seven boat J/80 fleet saw some spirited racing.  A repeat winner was Curt Johnson's AVET sailing to four 1sts and a 2nd for 6 pts.  John Steen sailed UNDERDOG to a 2-4-2-1-2 for 11 pts for second.  And, third was Bob Hayward's BLUE JAY with a 3-2-5-3-3 for 16 pts.

J/35 racer cruiser sailboat- sailing off San DiegoAmongst the handicap crowd, the big guns in PHRF 2 included Tim Fuller's J/125 RESOLUTE and Tom Holthus' well-traveled and campaigned J/145 BAD PAK.  Perhaps for the first time in several regattas, Tim's RESOLUTE took on all the course racers and sailed well to finish 2nd with a 2-2-3-2-2 score for 11 pts.  Accustomed to trouncing the J/125s around the closed-course race track was Tom's BAD PAK.  However, after a slow start, Tom's crew wound up the big beast, sailed faster and smarter and finished strongly to just miss out catching stablemate RESOLUTE.  BAD PAK sailed to a 4-3-2-1-3 for 13 pts to get third in class.

In PHRF 3, it was the battle of historically significant 35 footers. Included in the pack were a J/35, J/36, Frers 35, Beneteau 35 and Hunter 34.  After the smoke cleared, Tom and Terri Manok's J/35 PREDATOR laid down a consistent 3-2-2-3-2 for 12 points to secure second place.  Sailing photos credit- Bob Betancourt.  For more San Diego Yachting Cup sailing information and results.

J/22 one-design sailboats- sailing downwind - Annapolis, Chesapeake BayJ/80 Trio Battles For NOOD Supremacy
DAZZLER Blinds J/22 Competitors
(Annapolis, MD)- While the script called for battles to rage on after Charleston Race Week in some classes, it was not to be.  Instead, an entirely new cast of characters stepped onto the stage for this spring's Sperry Topsider Annapolis NOOD Regatta and established their roles as top dogs for the weekend.  And, what a roller-coaster it was for nearly every fleet on the water.  With three forecasts from North Sails Weather Services that were basically dead wrong for all three days, it was up to the skippers and tacticians to break out their "divining rods" and simply find the most wind with most favorable current advantage.  Most experienced Annapolis sailors will often error on the side of the current play versus the wind play, sometimes that worked, sometimes it didn't.  And, this chaotic and somewhat schizophrenic wind/current condition had some skippers apoplectic and their tacticians simply catatonic! It was not a pretty picture.  Nevertheless, the enormous turnout of 138 J's (62% of the entire fleet!) sailing in seven fleets (thirty-seven J/22s, thirteen J/24s, twenty-nine J/80s, fourteen J/30s, twenty-eight J/105s, seven J/35s and ten J/109s) simply stepped up to the challenges and made the most of them.

J/22 one-design sailboat- sailing off starting line- Annapolis- Chesapeake BayAs the largest fleet in Annapolis, the 37-boat J/22 class saw the only "runaway" winner, ironically, for the entire regatta.  Al Terhune sailed DAZZLER to a remarkably consistent score of 7-5-1-1-2-8-1-5 for 30 pts.  His competitors were not nearly so lucky, most gyrating through dramatic highs and deathly hallows lows.  Brad Julian sailing JULIAN ASSOCIATES managed to tally a scoreline of 6-1-5-7-1-6-17-2 for 45 pts.  From there it was a huge jump in scores to a battle for third overall that hung completely on the outcome of the last race.  Amongst that trio were Travis Odenbach sailing INSTIGATOR and the Newport contingent of Tim Healy on SAILORS FOR THE SEA and Carol Cronin on HPS.  When the smoke cleared on Sunday, Carol Cronin had made a strong bid for third but came up just short, her 4-7 on Sunday not enough to overcome two deep (21-24) scores, settling for fifth overall with a tally of 8-21-4-24-8-5-4-7 for 81 pts.  Hanging on my his fingernails was Tim Healy, getting a 2-6-8-31-4-16-12-1 for 80 pts to secure fourth.  And third was Travis on INSTIGATOR, managing to breath a sigh of relief after getting a 4th in the last race to score 1-8-15-2-5-25-19-4 for 79 pts.

J/80 winners- Klok/ Crumps sailing upwindIf the J/22s were having a 8-round dog-fight for 8 races to determine the top five, the J/80s were having a slug-fest while riding a roller-coaster up and down the standings at 100 mph.  Crazy. Desperate.  Ecstatic.  Wild.  Psychotic. Name an adjective within those broad terms and you may only begin to understand how rapidly the J/80 teams were moving up and down the standings race-by-race.  Even the local sailors from Annapolis were beyond frazzled.  Consider this, two World Champions in the J/80 class (Glenn Darden and Kerry Klingler) didn't even make the top five in this highly competitive fleet of 29 teams.  To add to the insanity, the winner was chosen based on a THREE-WAY tie for FIRST place!  Pass the Pepto-Bismol, please-- a few upset stomachs and ulcers brewing shortly! Nevertheless, it took a Danish brother/sister team (Tom and Marie Klok) and Marie's husband Will Crump on GULDFAXE to win the 3-way tie-breaker with 1-7-5-19-3-1-5-12 score for 53 pts.  Second in the tie-break was MORE GOSTOSA sailed by Jeff Kirchoff and Kevin Hayes with a 2-12-10-2-11-3-2-11 tally for 53 pts.  Surely the "we got robbed" story must go to Bruno Pasquinelli's team on TIAMO, at one point easily winning going into the Sunday, but having to eat a 13-10 on Sunday to end up with a scoreline of 5-3-9-6-5-2-13-10 for 53 pts-- ouch!  If the top three was not a crazy enough scenario, a similar situation shaped up for 4th and 5th overall also with a tie-breaker only 6 points back from the three "leaders".  In this case it was ANGRY CHAMELEON sailed by J/80 class leader Kirsten Robinson, getting a 6-15-4-9-2-13-8-2 score for 59 pts.  She won the tie-break with Gary Kamin's team on FIRED UP RACING with a 3-2-8-8-4-17-9-8 tally for 59 pts.  Of note, the only three race winner was Glenn Darden on EL TIGRE, riding a huge roller coaster up and down the track to just finish out of the money in seventh.  Perhaps most importantly of all, the overall STS Annapolis NOOD Winners  and qualifiers for the Caribbean NOOD Championship were---- GULDFAXE!  Yes, Marie, Will, Tom and Scott- we wish them all God Speed and lots of umbrella drinks to celebrate with, too!

J/24 Bangor Packet sailing Annapolis, Chesapeake BayIn the 13-boat J/24 division, Chris Jankowski's STREET LEGAL stayed hot from their previous regatta but a class veteran (30+ years!!) in the form of Tony Parker on BANGOR PACKET from Georgetown, MD really did show the kids how to get it done-- talk about a "schooling", finishing with double-bullets on the last day!  Tony's team sailed a solid regatta to get a 3-1-5-2-2-5-1-1 score for 20 pts.  BTW, the difference in age between the winner and the runner-up was less than the difference in the ages of the boats- 32+ years!!  They were followed by MILLENIUM FALCON skippered by Paul Van Ravensway to a 1-3-1-7-1-2-4-11 score for 30 pts.  Finally, hanging tough for their second straight regatta was Chris' team on STREET LEGAL, getting 9-2-4-1-4-1-2-9 for 32 pts and just barely missing out on a second straight silver for the month of April.

J/105 one-design sailboat- sailing upwind on Chesapeake BayThe 28 boat J/105 fleet also had some dramas on the last day, particularly with nearly 1/3 of the fleet called over early during the start of the first race on Sunday.  Amongst those called over was Cedric Lewis' MIRAGE and any hopes of finishing first were dashed, at least temporarily.  After hitting four corners in a row, like a mirage shimmering on the horizon, the real MIRAGE staged an extraordinary come-back to win the 7th race!  The drama didn't end there.  Climbing the leader-board rapidly was Peter McChesney on THE MYSTERY MACHINE, and indeed, a mystery it must've seemed to some of their competitors.  Finishing off the regatta with a 1-2-2-1, Peter and crew nearly won, losing only by 2 points.  Ultimately, Cedric and the MIRAGE gang hung on to get a 5-4-2-2-4-1-1-10 for 29 pts.  Peter's crew sailed well, managing a 7-2-5-11-1-2-2-1 for 31 pts under the challenging conditions.  Fourth, just barely, was INIGO's Jim Konigsberg sailing to a very steady scoreline of 6-11-6-9-9-3-6-6 for 56 pts.  Breathing down their necks, literally, was Carloyn and Chris Groobey's team on JAVA, starting out strong with a first and ending strongly with a 3-4, to get a 1-7-8-17-6-12-3-4 score-line for 58 pts for fifth overall.

J/109 one-design offshore racer cruiser sailboat- sailing fast under spinnakerLow point scorer for the regatta just happened to be one of the surest bets to get it, Bill Sweetser's champion J/109 team on RUSH.  Not only a gracious host, but a great competitor.  Hard not to like sailing in the J/109 class when the class act of the regatta is also a great party host!  At the end of it all, the J/109 fleet had great competition and the boys from New Jersey on MAD DOGS certainly made their presence felt, winning three races to Bill's four.  It's a bit ironic that the two good out-of-town teams joining the fun, Craig Wright's AFTERTHOUGHT from Raleigh, NC and Adrian Begley's MAD DOGS from Atlantic Highlands, NJ were the ones to give the locals a "run for the money".  In the end, Bill's team sailed to a  1-1-4-3-1-1-2-3 for 16 pts.  Second was Adrian's MAD DOGS with a 3-2-1-1-4-2-1-8 for 22 pts and third Craig's AFTERTHOUGHT with a 2-4-2-23-7-3-4 for 27 pts.

J/35 one-design offshore racer cruiser sailboat- sailng upwind on Chesapeake BayFollowing a similar theme as in other J classes, the J/35s had their fair share of drama to determine who would win the J/35 class.  The last race ultimately determined the outcome here, too.  Peter Scheidt's MAGGIE survived their roller coaster experiences to win with a 2-1-7-1-1-4-1-2 record for 19 pts.  Getting edged out in the last race was AUNT JEAN sailed by Jim Sagerholm from the Naval Academy Sailing Squadron, finishing second with a 1-3-1-2-2-5-2-5 for 21 pts.  Third was last year's bronze medallist, Chuck Kohlerman's MEDICINE MAN with 5-2-3-4-3-4-1 scores for 27 pts.

J/30 one-design racer cruiser sailboatWith fourteen J/30s on the line, there really was some strong competition amongst these 30 foot cruising-racing classics.  Even though they won last year, Bob Rutsch and Mike Costello on BEPOP had to fight like crazy to stay out of trouble and ahead of Bob Putnam skippering BETTER MOUSETRAP and Dave McConaughy's USA 90 during the last two races on Sunday.  Nevertheless, avoid the traps they did and Bob and Mike's BEPOP took it all, winning by only one point with a 2-3-4-1-1-7-6-2 for 26 pts.  BETTER MOUSETRAP took second overall with a 3-2-2-7-5-5-2-1 score for just 27 pts.  USA 90 sailed by Dave McConaughy was a contender for the lead, but had a slow day Sunday to finish out-of-the money, getting a 1-4-5-4-4-1-4-7 record for 30 pts-- it all came down to last race for the whole top three!   Sailing photo credits-  Tim Wilkes Photography    For more Sperry Top-Sider NOOD Annapolis sailing information.

J/111 one-design racing sailboat- sailing under spinnakerRoller-coaster Cervantes Race
J/111 ARABELLA Wins 4 of 6 Legs!
(Le Havre, France)- Over 100 boats were bound for Le Havre, Frances from Cowes, Isle of Wight, England for the RORC's first race of the European season, the Cervantes Trophy Race.  Just a 125 nm race- WSW from the Cowes/ Royal Yacht Squadron starting line to the renowned Needles (and the darn wreck!).  Turn left and go SE to St. Catherines Point.  Then back NE across Sandown Bay to Nab Tower (off eastern point of Isle of Wight), then SE 90 nm across La Manche (English Channel) to Le Havre, France.  Simple race?  Hardly.  And, it can be fraught with shipping channel issues, massive holes in the middle of 20-30 knot winds and the like.  This year was hardly any different than past "ditch races".  Smart sailing tossed in with a bit of luck would pay off yet again.  It was a race that had about 80% beating/ fetching and the other 20% a mix of the rest, in other words a waterline race.

IRC Two had no less than 25 yachts.  It was a close battle for line honours in class between the J/122 JOOPSTER sailed by Neil Kipling's crew and the J/111 sailed by the well-traveled Niall Dowling.  At the end of the race, the J/122 finished in front by 22 minutes.  As a result, JOOPSTER got second corrected and ARABELLA 4th on handicap.  Overall, they finished  4th and 7th, respectively.

An impressive line up in IRC Three had ten J/109s, including proven competitors such as Robin Taunt's JIBE and Paul Griffith's JAGERBOMB. At the finish, however, it was David Aisher's YEOMAN OF WIGHT that finished 3rd in class by 23 seconds!  J/109s also managed to clean out most of the top ten, taking 5th to 8th, including Robin Taunt's JIBE 5th, Paul Griffiths' JAGERBOMB 6th, Andrew Bird's JAMBALAYA 7th and Greg Nasmyth's JARHEAD in 8th.

The IRC Two-Handed Class, an increasingly popular discipline, attracted 18 yachts.  The J/109 JAMBALAYA sailed by Andrew Bird managed a fourth in class, missing overall honors by 15 minutes!

Paul Heyes was sailing on Niall's J/111 ARABELLA and offered this insightful report on the race proceedings:  "The start was downwind in 10-14 kts, dead run down the Solent with tide, so about an hour and a half to the Needles turning mark.

At the start, ARABELLA took off with the first group, which included "La Reponse", a very custom First 40 built by Beneteau as a works boat for Gerry Trenteseaux. JOOPSTER, the hot J 122, and a successful Beneteau 40.7.

On the run we could not quite match the VMG of the 2 or 3 fastest symmetrical boats who were sailing at 170 or deeper to our 160. Our VMG was identical to the Elan 410 and X 41. We arrived at the Needles Fairway buoy 4th in class just ahead of JOOPSTER and JELLYFISH, another J/122.

We then had a 15 mile beat against the tide to St Catherines Point, slowly the 40 footers edged away from us, we were sailing with 7 crew. Many of our class sailed at IRC max weight of 12 bodies, so giving away nearly 500 kgs on the rail for stability is not helpful in these conditions. The wind built to 25 kts as we approached St Catherines Point sailing upwind.

Shortly after the point the breeze reduced to less than 10 knots and we quite quickly regained all our losses.  In under one hour we passed the 5 or 6 class 2 boats that had been ahead of us, the class 1 leader (a 54 footer) and the remainder of the class 3 and 4 boats that had started before us. The performance of the J/111 was awesome on this short tacking against the tide light-airs situation. Normally in this situation you gain places on the tack in and lose after the tack to deeper water. ARABELLA gained a place on every tack and conceded none, we must have passed close to 30 boats arriving in Sandown Bay leading on the water of everything that we could see, the race winner a Farr 52 having disappeared over the horizon.

The original SE breeze re-established itself at 12 knots with the J/122 JELLYFISH furthest offshore and first to find the breeze, taking the lead. As the breeze filled in a drag race for the Nab Tower ensued between ARABELLA, La Reponse and the 2 J 122s.  Once again the 40 footers slowly edged ahead, La Reponse and JOOPSTER arriving at the Nab some 5 minutes prior to us after probably 10 miles of sailing mostly against the tide. The J/122 JELLYFISH was just ahead of everyone.

Prior to starting we had been told that the long leg of the race which was 60 miles from the Nab to a buoy off Le Havre would be a 110-115 TWA leg, so we had anticipating trying the A0 (Code 0) and making pace, sadly for ARABELLA the wind had clocked and it was now a 65 TWA leg, so another benefit for waterline length.  Couldn't "buy a break", could we?

After an hour or so the wind backed enough to allow us to change to a Jib-top, this was a sweet sail and we made good progress, with a wind that built to 28kts at one point. At this point we were flying.

At the end of the 60 mile leg we were unsure of our fleet position, with the exception of an X 41 that we rounded the mark with, the final 20 miles in to the finish were pretty much close hauled.

The final result showed us 4th in class and 7th in fleet. We were beaten by La Reponse and the J/122 JOOPSTER who took about 20 minutes out of us on the 90 miles of fetching and beating.  We were pretty pleased to have held off the many, much faster-rated 38-40 footers with longer waterlines that followed us in.  Next time we need the course setters/ Wind Gods to just give us a quarter of the course or more as a reaching leg, then the ARABELLA will really light up--- here's to looking at the Fastnet Race!"
For more RORC Cervantes Race sailing information.   Sailing photo credits-

J/44 offshore racer cruiser- one-design sailboatStrong J Turnout For AYC Spring Series
(Larchmont, NY)- While not the largest fleet the AYC Spring series has seen in a number of years, the J class presence continues to grow with passionate, enthusiastic owners having fun in both handicap and one-design sailing fleets.  This year seventy-seven boats in nine fleets were in attendance with forty-two J's sailing (55% of the whole fleet) in 3 handicap fleets (IRC and PHRF) and 3 one-design fleets.  Again, the American YC PRO/ RC did a good job of getting in some nice course racing the a wide variety of conditions over the two successive weekends.

The eleven boats sailing in IRC 40s saw five J's racing, three J/133s and two J/120s.  At the top of the heap was Tom Carroll's well-traveled team on board the J/133 SIREN SONG, sailing to a rather schizophrenic record of 8-1-8-1 for 18 pts and third in class.  Just behind them by only a half point was Ron Richman's J/133 ANTIDOTE with a 7-6-2.5-3 record for 18.5 pts.  A bit further down the standings was George Petrides J/120 AVRA and Jan Smeets J/133 BACCHANAL.

J/109 offshore racer cruiser sailboat- sailing Long Island SoundRick Lyall's J/109 STORM had their hands full in the twelve boat IRC 35 class.  Essentially, STORM started the second weekend in a three-way tie-breaker for first overall.  However, an "experience-filled" last weekend of sailing saw them go from a 3-7-1 to a 4-6-7, dropping the 7 to get 14 pts for third  in class, just winning a tie-breaker over a J/29!  The other five J's experienced similar gyrations in their positions.  However, one of the stronger, more consistent showings happened to be the brother team of John and Tony Esposito sailing their masthead J/29 in IRC seeking "real competition".  They got it.  And, kudos to them managed to start off with a bang winning their first ever IRC race, but then following up with a 1-5-6-3-5-(6) record for 14 pts, losing the tie-breaker for the bronze medal.

J/122 one-design offshore racer cruiser sailboat- sailing on Long Island soundWhether there's five J/122s or fifteen of them, the class always has tight racing with  no one boat dominating the class-- the J/122s all seem to be so equal, on any given any boat can win.  This year's spring series that rang true, despite the fact that the Dragon team took the championship.  Sailing strongly this year was Barry Gold on SUNDARI, starting well with a 1st, then adding a 4-4-1 to his tally to just miss first place by 2 pts.  However, tied with SUNDARI at 10 pts even was the trio of Mike Bruno, Tom Boyle and Jim Callahan racing WINGS to a consistent 2-2-3-3 tally, losing the tie-breaker to SUNDARI.  Finishing first was the family team of Andrew Weiss sailing CHRISTOPHER DRAGON with a 4-1-1-2 for 8 pts.  Interestingly, it seemed the regatta was led by the "black ships brigade", the winning boat with green stripes and the second place boat with white stripes!

The turnout of eight J/44s continues to demonstrate the efficacy of executing a strict one-design sails program to ensure fleet equality while minimizing un-necessary investment in mylar/carbon sail inventories.  What's even more interesting is to see that many teams continue to improve and the average time margin between first and last place boat continues to compress.  This year's J/44 teams also saw a changing of the guard at the top of the fleet.  Previous winners like Jim Bishop's well-traveled and famous GOLD DIGGER and Jeff Willis' CHALLENGE IV both won races, but didn't crack the top five!  Instead, Don and Rick Rave sailing RESOLUTE pulled off a 1-2-5-4 to win with 12 pts.  Nipping at their heels was Len Sitar sailing VAMP to a 3-6-3-2 for 14 pts to secure second.  And, looking more gorgeous than ever was MAXINE sailed by Bill Ketcham to a DNF-3-2-1 for 15 pts, unfortunate since it looks like they were sailing strong enough to win the series.

Perhaps the same can of "whup-ass" that powered the J/44 RESOLUTE to victory was also being drunk by George and Alex Wilbanks in the fourteen boat J/105 fleet.  Starting off with two 1sts, the Wilbanks' boat REVELATION added an 8-2-1-8 to win with just 5 pts! Perennial class leaders like KINCSEM and GUMPTION were wondering where they, too, could find that magical can of "elixir" ( e.g. the good stuff).  Without it, Joerg Esdorn and Duncan Hennes sailing KINCSEM had to settle for second place with a 3-2-6-1-3-6 for 9 pts and Kevin Grainger on GUMPTION 3 had to hang on for third place with a 2-4-4-5-7-7 for 15 pts.  

Finally, the PHRF 100s had five boats sailing, four of which were J's, two J/80s and two J/29s.  Gary Corwin's J/80 ROSIE was second followed by Tim Weber's J/29 RENEGADE.  Fourth was Matheus Hovers' J/29 KATOENDRA and fifth was Dan Goldberg's FRIVOLOUS.  For more American YC Spring Series sailing results.   Sailing photo credits-

J/122 and J/120 sailing Antigua Sailing WeekJ/122 SKY HUNTER II Wins Antigua Week!
(English Harbour, Antigua)-  For the last day of sailing, Friday’s 18-knot easterly seemed almost benign compared to the rush of trade winds that have been blasting through Antigua Sailing Week. There was some intense action. The Race Committee set a series of tight coastal courses that had the competitors vying for clear air in the tightly compressed fleet for the last race of Antigua Sailing Week.  The days before, it was a full blown easterly with trade winds touching 25 knots that provided for some high speed thrilling action on the pristine blue waters along Antigua’s leeward coastline. Foaming surf with waves breaking over two metres was all about staying under control, especially off Turtle Beach which was prone to gusts approaching 30 knots.

J/122 sailing Antigua Sailing Week on a reachClass 3 produced an intense battle between the top five yachts, with virtually every other race going to the wire. Jim Dobb's "native son" boat, the J/122 LOST HORIZON and the J/120 EL OCASO sailed by Rick Wesslund from Miami, Florida were amongst the contenders.  After the first three races, the J/122 LOST HORIZON was in a virtual three-way tie with the regatta leaders with a 2-4-1.  But, thereafter, the boys "lost the horizon" and couldn't manage to finish higher than 4ths, 5th to drop to fifth overall at the end.  Conversely, Rick's EL OCASO team sailed stronger every race to overcome a slow start and finish third in class. 

In Class 6 Peter Bainbridge’s J/122 SKY HUNTER II enjoyed the beat in big seas in the last race far more than their competitors to hang onto the lead for overall honors, taking three firsts in six races!  Third was the J/95 SHAMROCK VII sailed by Tom Mullen.  And fourth was Peter Lewis' J/105 WHISTLER.

An easy class leader in Class 7 was the J/30 BLUE PETER sailed by Tanner Jones and their local crew from Antigua, having won two of six races.  However, a DSQ in race #2 severely hampered their chances to win the overall prize.  The final results saw BLUE PETER finish in second just barely over one of their tougher competitors.

This year’s Antigua Sailing Week was blessed with outstanding racing conditions and beautiful weather. The shoreside events and logistics have required the energy and hard work of an army of volunteers led by Alison Sly-Adams and Paddy Prendergast. The outstanding race management team led by Kathy Lammers has been getting rapturous applause from the competitors for its preparation and execution of racing.

After the prize giving ceremony, Laviscount Brass rocked out Antigua Sailing Week. But despite no further racing the fun doesn’t stop Friday night! Saturday is Dockyard Day followed by the Cavalier Rum Street Party and the closing event is on Sunday with the Big Beach Bash at Dickenson Bay.  For more Antigua Sailing Week sailing information    Sailing photo credits- Tim Wright-


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

*  WANTED!!  J/160 FOR PASSAGE-MAKING!  The J/160 is one of the most sought after performance cruisers ever designed and I have a BUYER!  If you own a J/160 in good condition (preferably on the east coast of the US) and are willing to sell, please contact Tom Babbitt, East Coast Yacht Sales, 207 236 8656, or

J/80 sailors from Denmark- sailing Annapolis and winning*  By the Slimmest of Margins- Mike Lovett at SAILING WORLD interviewed the crew of Tom Klok's J/80 GULDFAXE that just won a three-way tie for first in the J/80 class and earned the overall victory at the 2011 Sperry Top-Sider Annapolis NOOD.  After a weekend of big breeze and dramatic wind shifts on Chesapeake Bay, you might not expect an out-of-towner to come out on top of the Sperry Top-Sider Annapolis NOOD, where members of the Capital City's strong racing community accounted for the majority of the 220-boat fleet. Nonetheless, when the overall winner was announced, it was Copenhagen resident Thomas Klok—whose team won a three-way tie for first place in the 29-boat J/80 division—who came bounding up to accept the silver dish, as well as the real prize, an invitation to join the winners of seven other NOOD regattas at the Sperry Top-Sider NOOD Championship, hosted by Sunsail in the British Virgin Islands this November.

The Guldfaxe team has a unique dynamic. Klok is the owner/ main trimmer. His brother-in-law, Will Crump, drives the boat. Klok's sister, Marie Crump, handles foredeck duties. The trio also works together in the management consulting business, which is why they refer to fourth crew member, Scott Collins, as their therapist. "A lot of people wonder how we can work together and sail together," says Will Crump. "Somehow, we make it work. I think it's because we can be honest with each other. Sometimes, it's hard for family members who sail together to be honest with each other about what needs to change."

SW: What were your expectations coming into the event?

Will Crump: There were three world champions in the fleet, and this is probably the toughest J/80 regatta in the U.S. this year. So we didn't have great expectations, aside from looking at it as practice, because we'll be going to Copenhagen for the worlds later this year.

Klok: We got the boat about a year ago for the worlds in Newport (R.I.). I lived in Newport for a few years, and when found out the worlds would be in my home turf two years in a row...So we did the worlds in Newport last October, then we left the boat here and sailed Charleston Race Week and this event, then we'll be shipping the boat to Denmark in about a week.

SW: With the worlds in Newport last year, there was a lot of enthusiasm for the J/80 in the U.S. Have you noticed a tapering off since then?

Will Crump: Not at all. It's actually ramped up. People came out of that event saying, "What a phenomenal boat and class." There's still a lot of development going on in the class. There a lot of difference between what the various sailmakers are offering, yet everyone's going about the same speed. So there's a lot of opportunity for people to get into the class and have fun figuring out the boat.   Read more here at Sailing World's forum site.

J/24 World Champion sailor- Terry Hutchinson sailing America's Cup 34* Terry Hutchinson has been participating in the new America's Cup AC45 catamarans down in Auckland, New Zealand.  Terry has learned to stuff the bows already doing 20+ knots and "send it down the mine", as they call it- a euphemism for going down to the bottom of the sea!  Terry's ARTEMIS RACING Team is learning fast and are, simultaneously, sailing the Extreme 40 catamaran circuit in Europe and Asia.  Hear more about Terry's perspective on the "learning to sail catamarans for dummies 101".  Interesting stuff.    So, which former J/24 World Champion has the better sailing toy?  Terry's AC45 and AC72 or Kenny's VOR 70 (see below)?  In either case, you, too, could have that choice if you started sailing J/24s, J/22s or J/80s!!

Puma VOR 70 sailing off Newport, RI* Ken Read's PUMA VOR 70 lives!  Designed Juan K and built by buddy Tommie Rich at New England Boatworks! Or, what any self-respecting J/24 World Champion would want as a toy to go offshore across the Seven Seas. Looks a lot like the the last boat, just more black than red in the color scheme.  Looks FAST, though.  Just your basic box-boat 70 foot "scow" with a bluntish bow that's almost round.  Not exactly an aesthetic boat with romantic lines, just brutal, raw power manifest in all carbon-black (the interior is black, too-- pretty, eh?).  No micro-modal sheets, pillow tops and down pillows for these boys-- more like carbon cloth bunks, plastic clothes, plastic underwear and synthetic mainsheets easing constantly on carbon drums at 120 db every minute or so.  Fun? Just 38,000 miles worth, too.  Only for masochists paid to take the pain.   Nevertheless, we wish Kenny luck and God Speed on this venture-- the French brigade will be tough (Stan Honey thinks the French are even crazier and tougher than the Kiwi's offshore--- he oughta know, they even smoke Gaulouoise hand-rolled cigarettes when it's blowing 50 knots in the Roaring 40s!).   Sailing photo credits- George Beris

The J Cruising CommunityJ 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.  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."  UPDATE-  Just a short note to update from Bill- "Our cruise began in May of 2000 and ended in May of 2008, some 8 years later. I have just finished and published my third and final book covering the last three or so years including our double handed crossing in 16 days and one winter in the Caribbean. Like the others, "Sea Trek- A Passion for sailing- Book III," can be found at  Thanks, Bill and Judy"

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 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).

SALACIA, the J/160 owned by Stephen and Cyndy Everett has an on-going blog describing some of their more amusing experiences (

-  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!

- Eric and Jenn on the J/160 MANDALAY also sailed the Pacific archipelago, read more on their blog at  Eric and Jenn are J/World alumni took MANDALAY up and down the West Coast (Mexico, CA)J/109 racer-cruiser sailboat GAIA- sailing off Java Sea cruising offshore, then to the South Pacific and New Zealand.  MANDALAY is back in San Francisco now, and in the J/World fleet--she is available for skippered charters, private instruction, and corporate/executive groups.

* The J/109 GAIA (seen right in the Java Sea) was sailed by Bob Riggle and Phyllis Macay around the world. In February 2011, their cruising adventures came to an abrupt, sad ending.  As a tribute to them and their cruising friends worldwide, we hope their chronicles on their GAIA website remains a tribute to their warm-hearted spirits- read more about why many loved them dearly and will remain touched by their loving spirit forever-