Wednesday, June 6, 2012

J/Newsletter- June 6th, 2012

J/80 worlds sailingJ/80 Worlds Preview
A Fraternity of Champions Re-Unite
(Dartmouth, England)- Seventy five boats and 350 racing sailors from nine nations will begin to arrive in Dartmouth next week to compete at The MIQ Logistics 2012 J/80 World Championship Powered by SLAM. The World Championship opens on Friday 8th of June and the practice race takes place on Monday 11th in Start Bay, just outside Dartmouth Harbour. The regatta is being organised by the Royal Dart Yacht Club and the senior hosting club is the Britannia Yacht Club. Racing for the World Championship title starts on Tuesday and three races are scheduled each day until Friday 15th June when the final two races of the series will be sailed. The new MIQ Logistics 2012 J/80 World Champion will be crowned at the Closing Ceremony and Prize-giving at Britannia Royal Naval College on Friday evening.

To have so many International teams traveling to this island nation to take part in the championship is an amazing feat in itself and it is a credit to MIQ Logistics, to SLAM and to all of the others supporting this year's J/80 Worlds. The fleet will be 40% bigger in Dartmouth than when the World Championship last came to the UK back in 2005.

Dartmouth offers the potential to deliver extremely challenging and exciting conditions for those racing at the event. Couple this with the splendor of the coastline and the warmth and support of Dartmouth residents and it is clear to see why the entry number is so high. The result is that some of the best sailors on the International racing circuit along with World Champions both past and present are coming to Dartmouth to compete. Jay Lutz of the USA and Ignacio Camino Rodrigues of Spain, the current J/80 World Champion will both be hoping that Dartmouth affords them a second opportunity to take the top spot on the podium this year.

Ruairidh Scott of North Sails won the World Championship for the UK when the event was last here in 2005. Scott returns to the J/80 fleet for the 2012 World Championship and will be racing with Simon Johnson in their boat Joyeuse.  Ruairidh said ‘It’s good to be back in the J/80 fleet. Over the last few years I’ve been closely involved with the development of the class through work but I have not actually managed to fit in much J/80 racing myself. Simon and I have my Spanish colleague Gustavo Martinez as our tactician and he was second at the J/80 Worlds a few years ago so we are hoping to put together a strong campaign in Dartmouth’.

J/80 worlds sailing in EnglandKevin Sproul of Ultimate Sails helmed the top British J/80 at Spi Ouest Regatta in France earlier this year. Canny Scotsman Sproul sounded confident but cautious about his prospects for 2012. ‘The French and Spanish are very strong at the moment’ said Sproul. ‘They’re spending a lot of time on the water and they will not be easy to beat but my crew are absolutely ready.’ Sproul and his team won the UK National Championship which was raced in Dartmouth in 2011 and so he knows the waters well. Having just come back from winning a major International regatta in a forty foot race-boat in Barcelona last week it is clear that Sproul is at the top of his game just now.

Nick Haigh (a familiar name in UK sailing circles with vast experience ranging from Lark dinghies to his most recent DK46 yacht) will be sailing his new J/80 with his wife Annie and the current SB3 World Champion Geoff Carveth. Nick explained ‘Geoff has campaigned J/80s before and when he called me to suggest putting a team together, I could not resist. Annie and I live in South Devon and with the J/80 Worlds sailing in our home waters we had to do it. We are fully revved up and ready to go with our new boat, Slightly Steamy.’ For Carveth, of course, the J/80 Worlds represent unfinished business.

Rayco Tabares (Spain) who won the J/80 Worlds in 2009 explained, ‘I started to sail J/80s in 2006 and in 2009 we won the World Championship in our country, at Santander. We thought then that it was a difficult year because there were so many boats with such good sailors, but the crews competing this year are even stronger! I love the J/80 class: it’s amazing for us to be competing against so many other teams, at regattas all over the world.  I’m so happy to get the chance to race in Dartmouth this year and we hope to have great racing with good winds’.

It promises to be an extraordinary regatta.  French Teams like Eric Brezellec and Jean Charles Moriceau on INTERFACE CONCEPT I & II, respectively have been at the top of their game in both French regattas and J/80 Worlds.  Fellow Frenchmen Luc Nadal and Pierre Follenfant will also be in the hunt.  On the English side, Ian Atkins on, Stew Hawthorn and Patrick Liardet will all be forces to contend with and are all capable of top three performances. From Denmark are top contenders Tom Klok and Will & Marie Crump.  Hong Kong are fielding two teams for the first time, Bruce Perkins and Andrew Moore.  From Sweden is their national champion, Ingemar Sundstedt.  And, from Netherlands is one of their top teams with Laura Vroon skippering.    For more J/80 World Championship sailing information

J/122 sailing New York YC Regatta off NewportRolex New York YC Regatta Preview
(Newport, RI)- The oldest and longest running regatta in America, New York Yacht Club’s Annual Regatta presented by Rolex will be held for the 158th time from June 8th-10th in Newport, Rhode Island.  Racing starts on Friday, June 8th, with the Around-the-Island Race. This classic 19 nautical mile race around Conanicut Island offers the sailors many challenges and beautiful scenery. J sailors will be racing both handicap and one-design during the event.  With 25 boats of the 133 entered, J's represent the largest brand participating in the regatta, nearly 20% of the total boats sailing in IRC, PHRF and One-Design.

In the IRC 5 Class, expect to see some spirited competition between the J/111, J/122 and J/44s.  Henry Brauer's J/111 FLEETWING will be up against a quartet of exceptionally well-sailed J/122s and J/44s.  In the 122 group are past NA Champions and Offshore Champions, like Mike Bruno and Tom Boyle's WINGS, Andrew Weiss' CHRISTOPHER DRAGON, Dave Murphy's PUGWASH and George Shaw's TUMBLEWEED.  Amongst the J/44s are familiar top class teams like Jim Bishop's GOLD DIGGER, Len Sitar's VAMP and Jason LeBlanc sailing the US Coast Guard's GLORY.

J/122 sailing New York YC regattaIRC 6 Class has often been the domain of the J/109s taking the rest of their class to task for the top of the podium.  Over the last several years, the J/109s have won their class and often take up much of the top three.  Look for past J/109 NA Champions like Bill Sweetser on RUSH and Rick Lyall on STORM to be dueling for class leadership.  And, local champions Rob Salk and John Sahagian on PICANTE along with Paul Milo on VENTO SOLARE will certainly be in the hunt for silverware in this competitive class.

In PHRF, the J/105s will have Dudley Norstrands JADED, Nelson Weiderman's KIMA and Fred Darlington's TONTO fighting for the top spots.  Jose Manuel Ugarte from Santiago, Chile recently bought SCIMITAR, last year's J/105 North American Champion boat to ultimately go sailing in Chile's booming J/105 fleet-- it will be interesting to see how Jose's team sails on Newport's often challenging weather conditions.

A fun addition to the regatta has been the PHRF Navigator's Race, a "tour" of Narragansett Bay and even Rhode Island Sound for a large fleet of boats that include the J/33 SIRIUS sailed by Mike Sullivan, the J/42 ARROWHEAD skippered by Mike Chapman, the J/92s SPIRIT sailed by EC Helme, the J/160 TRUE fresh off the FIGAWI Race sailed by Howie Hodgson and the J/24 NIGHTHAWK sailed by Rich Barker and Mike Ryan.

Saturday evening after the racing, the Annual Regatta always has a fabulous dinner on the lawn in front of the club along the waterfront.  Be sure to join the crews for some fun and entertainment, which includes the famous, hot local group featured on Thursday nights at the delicious Mexican restaurant "Perro Salado", Steve and friends from "Honky Tonk Nights"!  For more Rolex New York YC Annual Regatta sailing information

J/111 sailing upwindChicago NOOD Preview
(Chicago, IL)- One of the biggest regattas that exists in the Sailing World NOOD events circuit is the Sperry Topsider Chicago NOOD.  It has consistently drawn fleets of over 200 boats and is a central part of the Chicago summer-time sailing season, the first part of the "Big Three" must do events- NOOD, Chicago-Mac and Verve Cup.

J/Teams have been strong supporters of the event and this year sees that level of involvement in fact increase with a growing J/111 One-Design Class.  Stalwarts like the J/105s, J/109s and even the J/30s and J/35s in Level Classes continue to have great competition with good fleets in attendance.

With a half-dozen entries, the J/111 class has a very competitive fleet racing one another, as evidenced by how the fleet has improved over the course of the past year.  Top Key West Race Week finisher, Paul Stahlberg's MENTAL, will be applying some of their lessons learned against the best Grand Prix teams down South to remain in the hunt.  Past NOOD Champion and Mac Race podium finishers, KASHMIR sailed by Karl Brummel, Steve Henderson and Mike Mayer will certainly be a factor for the top three.  It will be a tough call to say how this fleet ends up as even the smallest shift with a bit of velocity is producing big gains for boats even on the periphery of the pack upwind, so no one gets away with breakaway wins.  With good crews on all boats, Steve Dabrowski's NIGHTHAWK, George Miz's IMPULSE, Rich Witzel's ROWDY and Tom McIntosh's MISTY will all win races during the course of the regatta.

For the J/105s, this year again sees the return of good teams, led by past champion Tom and Gyt Petkus on VYTIS and upcoming fast teams like Jon Weglarz's THE ASYLUM and Clark Pellet's SEALARK.  In the J/109s, several top teams are in attendance, include past champion Kevin Saedi's MOMENTUS and Irv Kerbel's K-III.  In the Level 35s, look to see Larry Schell's J/35 TOUCH OF GREY and Bruce Metcalf's BOZO'S CIRCUS near the top of the leader board. In ORR3, Mitch Padnos' J/124 SUFFICIENT REASON will be a factor in this division.   For more Sperry Topsider Chicago NOOD Regatta sailing information

J/122s sailing Rolex Giraglia Cup RaceJ/122s Sailing Rolex Giraglia Cup
(St Tropez, France)- The Giraglia Rolex Cup is one of the most popular yachting events in the Mediterranean and has been a tradition for European sailors close to 60 years. The event is a pageant of sailing and runs over a full week each year in mid-June. Inshore racing on the Bay of Saint-Tropez takes place from Sunday, 10 to Tuesday, 12 June, and, the offshore race starts on Wednesday, 13 June. The period in Saint-Tropez has a quintessential French Mediterranean feel, with the three days of inshore racing allowing competitors to enjoy the culinary highlights of an engaging port, before embarking on the more serious challenge of a 242-nautical mile race to Sanremo, via the Giraglia, a rocky outcrop off the northern tip of Corsica.

Regularly attracting in excess of 200 yachts for the week of competition, the event is a kaleidoscope of nationalities. The French and Italians make up the bulk of entries, but frequently yachts from the USA, United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Nordic countries, Eastern Europe, Russia, and, even Asia and the Southern Hemisphere add richness to the occasion.

There are various notable moments for the participants. Certainly, the most memorable is the customary crew party featuring live music, exceptional food and drink, and, a spectacular firework display. Hosted by Rolex, it is set amid the grounds of La Citadelle, the 17th century fort that dominates the skyline on the landward side of Saint-Tropez.

Thereafter, for those on the offshore race, the rounding of the Giraglia marks the turning for the home. The rock itself is like many others, topped with a lighthouse to help navigators with their bearings. It lies less than one nautical mile off the coast of Corsica, rises 66-metres at its highest point and measures 600-metres in length. Yet, it has achieved mythic proportion in the minds of racing sailors, who view it in similar terms as the Fastnet Rock: somewhere small and uninhabitable, but crucial in the quest to complete the challenge of the race.

The entry list for the Giraglia Rolex Cup offshore race shows some notable returnees to a challenge that requires resolute determination to successfully counter the vagaries of the wind, the fierce competition within the fleet, and, the twists and tactical conundrums presented by the racecourse.

There are always newcomers on the start list, but few will match the pedigree of the J/122 ARTIE from Malta, owned by Lee Satariano and co-skippered by Christian Ripard. In their previous competitive offshore outing the combination were the first Maltese in ten years to win the hugely demanding 606-nm Rolex Middle Sea Race. This is Satariano’s first venture away from home waters, something he is looking forward to, “it will be a great challenge, but we’re all up for it. The most important characteristic we possess is a motivated crew. After that consistency is a major factor, as is good preparation.”  Providing Lee and Christian good motivation and competition will be one of the best Italian offshore teams, led by Giancarlo Ghislanzoni on his J/122 CHESTRESS 3.  Don't be surprised if both teams will be dueling for handicap honors.   For more Rolex Giraglia Race sailing information

J/80s sailing past markCalling all J/80 Sailors!  
(Fort Worth, Texas)-  Get your game on in Texas for the 2012 North Americans to be held at Fort Worth Boat Club on October 31-November 1st!  There are a great slate of feeder events starting with the HOOD regatta at Houston YC, followed by J/Fest at Houston YC.  J/Fest Southwest has become a "can't miss" event for the local J Sailors, and the Texas J/80 sailors would like to see all their J/80 counterparts to go down and experience the fun times at this great event!

The very next weekend is the last Southern circuit stop two weeks before the North Americans!  So, get your J/80 on down there and dial up your favorite airline (Southwest, maybe?) and get some cheap tickets to fly back and forth.  Local J/80 owners will try to pitch in and help trailer boats to Ft. Worth from Houston!  In the true vernacular of Southern hospitality, "you'll come on down, ya here!"  They mean it.  When the Texan contingent decide to throw a "hoe-down" and have some fun, you really don't want to miss it.  Fun sailing and entertainment for all!  Here's how the schedule lays out for those who wish to extend their sailing seasons into the fall (especially for our J/80 European friends):
     Sep 22-23rd- The HOOD Regatta- Houston YC
     Oct 13-14th- J/Fest Southwest Regatta-
     Oct 20-21- Old Man of the Sea Regatta-
     Oct 31-Nov 1- J/80 North Americans-

J Teams sailing- sunset sail off Melbourne, AustraliaJ/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

For many sailors, the real start of summer is when all their kids get out of school for their summer breaks.  All of a sudden, there's all kinds of crew available and Mom and Dad can spend a bit more of their free time traveling, sailing and seeing family and friends.  The first weekend of June was certainly busy around the world.  On the European side of things, a raft of J/97s and J/109s sailed the Brewin Dolphin Scottish Series on beautiful Loch Fyne off the quaint little town of Tarbert in Scotland, just a stone's throw from the Outer Hebrides.  A bit further north into the Arctic Circle, the J/109 BLUR had fun sailing in an epic, blustery event off Marstrand, Sweden in the inaugural Marstrand Big Boat Races.  Because the J/80 Worlds start next week in Dartmouth, England, the significance of the two latest J/80 events in Europe meant teams were refining their teamwork and performance to razor sharpness.  The J/80 Copa de Espana sailed in Bilbao, Spain and the J/80 Grand Prix Crouesty raced off Crouesty, France saw many top J/80 Worlds contenders sailing.  J/24s across the globe were busy as usual.  In Europe, the J/24s just concluded their J/24 Europeans off Arzachena, Sardinia, a breathtaking place to sail on the northern coastline of that famous Italian island.  J/24s also sailed their Canadian Nationals in an equally spectacular body of water, the bays off Vancouver, British Columbia which have the snow-capped Canadian Rockies as background on their canvas with monstrous killer whales and huge elephant seals and speedy dolphins cavorting around the boats as they rounded marks and set spinnakers.  On the other side of the Canadian provinces, the J/111 sailed the Nova Scotia Opener off Halifax, Nova Scotia and a fleet of J/109s and J/35s sailed their season opener off Port Credit, Ontario, sailing the Susan Hood Trophy Race on Lake Ontario.  Further west on the Great Lakes, the J/120s sailed one-design in the inaugural Bayview One-Design Regatta on Lake Huron.  Over on Lake Michigan, the J/111s, J/109s and J/105s sailed their season opener/ practice race in Columbia YC's fun Colors Regatta off the impressive Chicago waterfront.

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:

Jun 8-10- Chicago NOOD Regatta- Chicago, IL-
Jun 9-15- J/80 Worlds- Dartmouth, England-
Jun 15- Newport-Bermuda Race- Newport, RI-
Jun 16-23- Kieler Woche- Kiel, Germany-
Jun 24-30- J/24 US Nationals- Dillon, CO-
Jun 26-29- J/22 Worlds- Le Crouesty, France-

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

J/97 sailing ScotlandJ/97s Sweep Scottish Series
(Tarbert, Scotland)- It was a fantastic weekend for the J97’s sailing in the beautiful waters of Loch Fyne off Tarbert, Scotland.  A gorgeous body of water located northwest of Glasgow tucked into a complex archipelago of fjord-like sounds and bays with lushly green hills surrounding the waters of the race course.

Over the 38 years of the Scottish Series there have been few prize-givings where the winners of the overall Scottish Series Trophy have composed a more deserving score-line.  With seven wins from as many starts on Loch Fyne, Grant Gordon and his team on the J/97 FEVER GLENFIDDICH not only won each race in IRC Class 3, but they sailed flawlessly to keep two past winners of the premier regatta’s top award behind them. FEVER, steered by owner Grant Gordon with Tarbert’s Ruairidh Scott as tactician, won their class by 12 points ahead of the identical J/97 JACKAROO sailed by Jim Dick's team which won the Scottish Series Trophy one year ago.

“As an advertisement for this event and for Scottish sailing I don’t think you could ask for more than we have had these past few days. It is has been brilliant,” said Gordon who was sailing at his third Brewin Dolphin Scottish Series.

J/97 sailing in ScotlandAn expatriate Scot who has raced internationally with his FEVER team, including winning the Swan 45 European Championships with Scott as tactician, Gordon sailed from the Royal Gourock YC as a youngster, and flew the flag of the Clyde Cruising Club on extended family cruises with their Van de Stadt 49 footer Cinderella. He keeps his boat on the south coast of England but raced at Tarbert with a crew which was 75% Scottish.

“This is a team of friends that I can rely on, some from university sailing days, some who we wanted to be here because we know they enjoy it, but we came to have fun and so winning here is great,” said Ruairidh Scott. “I am so fortunate to go sailing and racing in nice places around the world but it is really special to come back here and race, and winning here is even better. This regatta has been as good as I can remember. And, yes, we all joke about Loch Fyne from time to time, with spinnakers pointing at each other on the same tack, but the winds this time have been really good and the sunshine fantastic.”

J/97 FEVER sailing team at Scotland seriesThe winning crew included Grant Gordon, the owner-driver, Ruairidh Scott, Mike Forster, Charlie Cumbley, Ben Fields, Scott Aikman, Angus Stevenson and Stewart Miller. “I am very proud of this team. It has been really magnificent. They have all worked hard and I am grateful for their contribution,” said Gordon.  Scott becomes one of the few sailors to have won the overall trophy three times in the skipper, helm or tactician roles.  Rounding out the J/97 sweep of the class, lying fourth was JAYWALKER.

In IRC 1, the J/133 SPIRIT OF JACANA crewed by the Douglas Family from Carrickfergus Sailing Club in Ireland sailed a nice series to finish third in class.  In IRC 2 were a pack of hungry J/109s that nearly pulled off the same trick their J/97 sisterships managed to accomplish.  Pat Kelley's J/109 STORM II from Howth YC in Ireland was third in class and Hall & McDonnell's J/109 SOMETHING ELSE from National YC in Ireland was fifth in class.   For more Brewin Dolphin Scottish Series sailing information

J/80 sailing in SpainAwesome Sailing J/80 Copa de Espana
El Conquistador Pichu Torcida/ ECC VIVIENDAS Wins
(Bilbao, Spain)- Past J/80 World Champion, Pichu Torcida, can seem somewhat invincible sometimes; sailing his trusted ECC VIVIENDAS J/80 to yet another regatta win against another field of strong Spanish J/80 teams.  Pichu managed to overcome late challenges from NILFISK, sailed by Catalonian Olympic Medalist Jose Maria van der Ploeg.  During the three days of the regatta, Torcida never dropped below fifth place and finished with 15 points.  Meanwhile, Van der Ploeg sailing for the Club Nautico El Balis of Barcelona, ​​finished with just 16 points after an intense struggle on the water with Torcida.  Completing the podium was RAITAN sailed by Amaliach Gonzalez with 20 points.  The first three teams had a thrilling final day to determine the champion and the podium outcome.

This year's Copa de Espana had 32 teams participating.  After the top three, fourth was Paul Santurde's GO FIT, fifth was yet another J/80 World Champion, Ignacio Camino's familiar NEXTEL ENGINEERING. Remarkably, even past champions like Jaime Piris on FONESTAR could only manage an eighth.  With this practice behind them, the J/80 sailors during the Worlds in Dartmouth will have to again face a well-honed group of sailors from Spain.   For more Spanish J/80 sailing information

J/80s sailing upwind off startGreat Sailing For Grand Prix Crouesty
(Crouesty, France)- Forty teams participated in the fourth leg of the Coupe de France J/80 over the weekend.  If the wind gave the competitors a wonderful first day with three beautiful races contested in gorgeous medium wind conditions, it proved far more elusive the next two days-- with only one race sailed between Sunday and Monday.  The crews, however, could console themselves somewhat on Sunday evening with the traditional "feast of oysters" offered by the Crouesty Yacht Club Carnac, host of the event.

The Grand Prix du Crouesty, sponsored by the Yacht Club de France, has been held since its inception in 1990 during the weekend of Pentecost on the magnificent body of water bounded by the Presque Ile Rhuys, and the islands of Houat Hoedic, called "Mor Braz".  Beyond the festival at sea with over 600 sailors engaged in tight battles in over 200+ boats, the Grand Prix of Crouesty is also great entertainment with a tremendous festival and "carnival spirit" associated with having fun both on and off the water.

In general, the sailing was very tight for the top three boats, only two points separating them in the end. But, ultimately it was the crew of Simon Moriceau on INTERFACE CONCEPT II that won the battle, beating Nicolas Lunven sailing GENERALI in second and Philip Guigné on MARINE LORIENT in third, losing the tie-breaker to Lunven.  Fourth was Luc Nadal sailing GANJA and fifth was Eric Brezellec on INTERFACE CONCEPT I.

For the J/22s, a half-dozen boats participated with Patrick Huet on EUROPEAN HOMES winning with straight firsts.  Second was Claire Pouteau on SOFFE and third was Fabrice Cahierc on J'M.  The event was good practice for these teams that will be hosting the upcoming J/22 World Championships in Crouesty at the end of June.   For more J/80 & J/22 Grand Prix Crouesty sailing information

J/24 sailing Vancouver CanadaA PEARL For J/24 Canadians
(Vancouver, BC, Canada)- This year's J/24 Canadian Nationals were held in the incredibly picturesque city of Vancouver, British Columbia. Like her famous sister-city, Victoria, that hosts the annual Swiftsure Lightship Classic Offshore race every year, the Vancouver locals seem to have a habit of making sure that any sailor and their merry bandits of crew have a happy time, no matter the conditions or circumstances anyone encounters.

dolphins in CanadaFor the near dozen or so J/24 teams that participated in this year's J/24 Canadians, it would be fair to say that most every crew had a "happy face" no matter where they were in the fleet.  Beautiful sailing.  Fabulous hosts at West Vancouver Yacht Club.  Great racing with an RC determined to get in a lot of great races, nine total sailed for the series!  More often than not, tired sailors are happy sailors.  "Veni vidi vici", as they say!  We came to sail.  We came to party.  We came to have fun!  West Vancouver YC and their supporting cast delivered.

J/24s sailing upwind in CanadaIn the end, it was a "pearl" of a regatta for Mike Johnson and crew from Seattle YC sailing their great yacht PEARL to 5-4-3-1-2-2-7-3-1 to lay down the gauntlet for others to match, generating a mere 21 points in 9 races-- about a 2+ average?  Recent J/24 Seattle NOODS Regatta winner, Mark Laura on TUNDRA ROSE could not match their prodigious output, managing to amass a 2-3-2-4-1-1-3-9-8 record for 24 pts net.  Third was Bard Miller's HAIR OF THE DOG, managing to compile a 4-2-8-5-3-5-1-6-3 for 29 pts net-- an appropriately named boat, by the way!  To show you how deep the competition was, past J/24 Seattle NOOD champion Scott Milne started off incredibly strong and then faded from view, collecting a 1-1-4-10-5-7-2-8-2 for a 30 pts net to earn 4th place.  Fifth was Eric Sanderson and buddies on SUSPENCE, working hard against some formidable competitors to scratch out a 3-5-1-9-4-5-5-9 for 40 pts.

All in all, a very tight fleet that had a lot of fun amongst friends in a gorgeous setting.  The remarkably roller-coaster finish results were a testament to the competitiveness of the fleet-- only a dozen or so College All-American sailors sprinkled throughout the fleet.  Case in point?  Steve Fleckenstein on BABALOUIE, a former top Canadian Star and Laser sailor struggling against fellow bro's to grab a 7th in this crazy fleet, just 3 pts(!!!) from third place.   For more J/24 Canadian sailing photos  For more J/24 Canadian sailing information

J/111s sailing off starting lineChallenging Sailing In Colors Regatta
J/111 KASHMIR, J/109 KIII, J/105 THE ASYLUM Win Class
(Chicago, IL)- For the past several years, the Columbia Yacht Club hosts their "Colors Regatta" as the "warm-up" for the summer offshore racing season in Chicago.  The event has continued to grow in popularity simply because it has become the "fourth" regatta on the summer sailing calendar locally, an important one to grind out the old rust from the winter, tune up the boat and the crew and basically get the wheels greased before they simply spin off the shopping trolley before you can collect ANY silverware! Rest assured, the CYC Support Crew at this event bend over backwards to make sure all sailors are having a fun time, hard not to. With a wonderful dinner and entertainment Saturday night on the afterdeck of their ship (literally!) moored on Chicago's fabulous waterfront and a trophy presentation on the docks after Sunday's sailing, it's hard not to enjoy the sights and sounds of sailors enjoying the best that Chicago has to offer.

Continuing their strong sailing over the past season in the J/111 class, the trio of Brummel/ Henderson/ Mayer on KASHMIR have continued to lead the class, but only barely.  After the first day of racing, Paul Stahlberg's crew on MENTAL were leading the fleet with a 1-1-1-2 for 5 pts.  The KASHMIR crew had managed a 3-2-2-1, showing improvement every race.  Sunday dawned with an even shiftier, crazier wind pattern from the WNW.  In the end, the KASHMIR boys led by their ever-present Spinnaker Goddess, Karen Gottwald, managed to strike a 1-2 in the last two races to "seal the deal", winning the regatta by 2 pts.  Paul's crew on MENTAL had a bit of a "brain fade" on Sunday, managing a 4-5 to swing their delta from a 3 pt lead to a 2 pt loss.  Steve Dabrowski's NIGHTHAWK sailed a consistent series to grab third.  Fourth was George Miz's IMPULSE.  And, J/111 newcomer Rich Witzel on ROWDY managed to be a "spoiler" on Sunday, racking up a 2-1 to throw a curve-ball into the class standings.

Amongst the J/109s, Irv Kerbel's team on KIII put a dent into the usual pecking order to win by 3 pts over the rest of the madding crowd.  KIII's 1-3-2-2-2 tally for 10 pts was remarkably consistent despite the crazy, shifty, puffy conditions the fleet experienced off the Chicago waterfront just off the famous McCormick Place (a.k.a.- the place where NATO members and Osama-bama recently had a chat with some protestors nearby).  Don Meyer's CERTAINLY managed two bullets, but not enough to overcome Irv's crew, amassing just a 5-1-1-3-3 for 13 pts.  Kevin Saedi's team on MOMENTUS were always in the hunt with a 3-4-3-1-4 for 15 pts.

As the J/105 fleet continues to evolve in Chicago, new faces in the crowd pop-out of the woodwork and put their stamp on the local fleet.  So it seemed it was the case in this regatta and time will tell if this holds true for the balance of the Chicago NOOD Regatta, Chicago-Mackinac Race and the Verve Cup during the season.  Nevertheless, Jon Weglarz's team on THE ASYLUM certainly showed it was NOT the "inmates running the asylum", it was the inmates ruling the roost!  Their 1-1-1 was, to say the least, pretty good?  Not bad?  OK?  A schooling? A spanking? Just plain luck?  Whatever one's opinion, they sailed "well".  Congratulations to the ASYLUM gang.  Another up and comer was Clark Pellet's crew on SEALARK sailing a perfect "3"- all 3rd to grab 2nd overall.  Past champs Tom & Gyt Petkus on VYTIS sailed a 4-2-5 to snare 3rd.  Mike Newman's VALHALLA was 4th and JohnnY Moore's HERE'S JOHNNY was 5th.   For more Colors Regatta sailing information

J/109 blur sailing marstrand swedenBLUR Wins Marstrand Big Boat Race
(Marstrand, Sweden)- Amongst sailing cognoscenti, Marstrand is considered to be one of the world premier sailing locations. Currently, the Stena Match Cup and RC44 Sweden Cup draws the rock stars of our sport, but many remember the famous Skaw Race, the J/24 Worlds and the Dragon Gold Cup.

This year the Marstrand Race Committee, together with and North Sails, invited all sailors to the first edition of "Marstrand Big Boat Race". The format was simple-- two days of intense windward/leeward racing as well as some great parties.  Hard to beat that proposition in one of the world's sexiest places to go sailing!

The starting list featured 37 boats from western and southern Sweden and a "who's who" list of offshore racers. From the current ORC European Champion Salona 37 Feelgood and Farr 30 European Champion Farrbar II (with Olympic sailors Martin Strandberg and Mattias Rahm on board) to X-50 Krabat with Lars Idmyr as helmsman.

Challenging conditions with up to 24 knots of wind on Saturday, and the notorious steep waves of the Marstrand fjord, rewarded crew work and small errors resulted in spectacular wipe-outs. One boat broke their mast after a huge surf going 16-18 knots before the fun ended with a bang. Late afternoon the wind increased even more and the third race was canceled and everyone was relieved to go back to the surprise dock party and a huge regatta dinner.

Even better conditions Sunday. Sunny and 12-18 knots of wind. A shorter windward/leeward course and many general recalls made everyone work hard and the race committee easily pulled off three races. With many OCS in the last two races, the final results were unclear until they were posted online.  With a dominating 16.5 points margin, it was self-evident the J/109 BLUR with Peter Gustafsson as skipper won the regatta.

"We know we're fast in these conditions, so we sailed conservatively and didn't take any chances. Also, we're on the third seasons with the same crew which helps when it's blowing +24 knots. I'm so happy to be able to compete with all those great sailors!" said Peter Gustafsson.

"We've had some amazing racing with the J/109, but now we're focusing on the J/111. We started out with Spi Ouest and have done a lot of training, but still there's much work to get 100% out of the new speedster. On some of the downwind runs this weekend I really missed the 111 - going 18 knots instead of 12!!"    Sailing photo credits- Dan Sjunnesson - Studio CA   For more J/109 BLUR sailing information

J/Sailors Enjoy Susan Hood Race
35 Ft J Teams Dominate IRC 2
(Mississauga, Ontario, Canada)- This past weekend, J teams had a fun time sailing the Susan Hood Trophy Race, emblematic of the start of the summer sailing season on the western end of Lake Ontario.  A strong fleet of J's sailed the event spread across both IRC and PHRF Divisions.

In IRC 2, which included several past race winners, it was going to be a tough fight to the finish.  In the end, it was a legendary J/35 CRIME SCENE sailed by Stephen Trevitt that took second in class.  From there it was a near "J-Class" sweep.   Third was the J/109 BLUE STREAK sailed by Robert Eckerseley from Toronto, fourth was Sheila Smith's J/109 PHOENIX and fifth was local Port Credit YC sailor Leszek Siek's J/35 JEAGER.  For more Susan Hood Race sailing information

J/24s sailing off SardiniaItalian LA SUPERBA Wins J/24 Europeans
Brazilian Maurizio Santa Cruz Wins "Open" Europeans
(Arzachena, Sardinia, Italy)- Can the newly minted Italian Champions in Sardinia also become the J/24 European Champions?  As "the Fates" will have it, yes.  Ignacio Bonanno on LA SUPERBA wins the J/24 Europeans while past J/24 World Champion Brazilian Mauricio Santa Cruz on BRUSCHETTA wins the European Open competition.

J/24s sailing off Sardinia starting lineIn the end, after a remarkable nine races spaced over four days the Brazilian team of Mauricio Santa Cruz managed to completely dominate the J/24 teams assembled for the European Championship.  After starting slowly (really slowly for them), Mauricio's crew sailed a 13-28-1-2-2-2-1-1-3 to win with a 25 pts total, 14 points in front of the second place finisher, LA SUPERBA. After winning the Italian J/24 Championships, Ignazio Bonanno on LA SUPERBA  sailed a very solid regatta, starting off strongly with a 3-2-2-8-3-10-4-7 to finish with a net 39 pts, winner of the "Europeans".  Third overall in the regatta was the American team from Seattle, Washington, Keith Whittemore and crew on FURIO.  They started with about as crappy a score-line as anyone could imagine- 19-ocs-21 but managed to overcome the romance of the Sardinia women and seductive coastline to score a 4-1-1-5-2-2 for the best tally in  the fleet for the last six races for a 55 pts total.  They just edged out the top German tea, Kai Mares on ROTOMAN that sailed a solid regatta to get a 9-1-3-3-9-12-13-6 for 56 pts.  Fifth was the American team of Mike Ingham on JULIA with a score of 2-ocs-13-16-4-3-7-9-4 for 58 pts.  For more J/24 European Championship sailing information

FLYING IRISH Crushes Bayview Regatta
(Detroit, Michigan)- The inaugural Bayview One-Design Regatta had twenty-one classes with 179 competitors on four race circles-- an average of 8.5 competitors per class.  In the J/120 Class, it was Bill Bresser's team on FLYING IRISH that won a tie-breaker by virtue of a blitzkrieg of four 1sts in the last four races to take top honors in the J/120 class.  Second was Henry Mistele on NIGHT MOVES.  Third was J/120 Class Legend Frank Kern on CARINTHIA with 20 pts.  For Complete Bayview One-Design Regatta sailing results

J/111 sailing Nova Scotia Halifax openerJ/111 Wins Nova Scotia Opener
(Halifax, NS) - The Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron celebrates its 175th year this season and the Opening Regatta was run in bright sunshine and breezes from 12-18 knots.

Racing in the A1 fleet was the J/111 BLAST sailing against a Farr 11m, a Soto 40, a Farr 40, a 1D35 and two Mumm 30's. When the weekend ended, BLAST sailed by Mark Surrette's crew finished in 1st place.

John Whynacht sailed his J/24 STICKY FINGERS to a 1st in class while John Heseltine's few onboard J-ZEUS II-9 won the very competitive J/29 class.  LULA, a J/22 finished 2nd in B class.

Please note, in August, the Lunenburg Yacht Club will be hosting the North American J/29 Regatta!


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

J/80 sailing in Canada* Is the J/80 Canada Fleet Growing?  Yes! According to Larry Alexander.  "We’re building slowly but surely on the north shore of Lake Ontario have formed a small group that are diligently putting together a fleet of J/80s adding two more boats over the winter out of the Ottawa region and very excited about the 2012 One Design season with up to three separate J/80 events planned. The theme for the first event this season was to give back. As we see more success building locally, we wanted to align to a charitable cause and one that is know across the local sailing community. We’ve negotiated with the TAHR organization to have the first north shore Lake Ontario J/80 start. We need to get as many of you out as possible for this inaugural local Lake Ontario J/80 fleet, support our fledging local J 80 One Design fleet and a great charitable cause.

The 2012 Toronto Area Hospice Regatta (“TAHR”) is celebrating its 5th Year the weekend of June 16-17, 2012 hosted by the National Yacht Club in Toronto.  Thanks to the participation and generosity of Lake Ontario sailors, we have raised over $100,000 over four years to benefit Perram House – a palliative-care residence in Toronto’s inner city.  For more Canadian J/80 sailing information.

* J/80 & J/35 in Barcelona Sailing School- Sailing director, Eva Piulats, says "We're opening a new sailing school in Barcelona...the novelty is that we have a beautiful J-35 in our fleet! We are proud to have such a performance boat for sail-training."

Furthermore, Eva says, "As founder of the brand new company "Barcelona Sailing School", I have a background in sciences in my early ages and then more than a decade of sailing experience in several seas and countries. And from the beginning, I had the chance to work with the dealer of J-Boats in Spain, Mr. Pedro Egea, manager of the company Catamaran Center SL & Yate Center. He made me love J-Boats by sailing them and I was clearly set up for the decision.

So, when I wanted to turn my career into another field and be devoted to training, I decided to focus on J-Boats. We planned to use J-35 for offshore regattas and preparing skippers to cruise on their own. We also offer other activities in J-80 for day-sailing!"  For more Barcelona Sailing School information- L'Equip de Xaloc

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 (  Read about their latest adventures as they've gotten to New Zealand- "Avante Cruises the Pacific".

- 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-