Wednesday, August 22, 2012

J/Newsletter- August 22nd, 2012

J/70s sailing off Newport, RIJ/70 NYYC IQS Preview 
(Newport, RI)- This year's NYYC Invitational Cup U.S. Qualifying Series (USQS) will feature twelve new J/70 speedsters! The J/70 will join the NYYC’s fleet of Sonars when 24 of the nation’s most competitive yacht clubs compete in the NYYC USQS off Newport, RI from September 4 to 8, 2012. The top three finishers will earn the right to compete in the 2013 NYYC Invitational Cup presented by Rolex.

The USQS will continue the successful format from 2010 in which teams compete in two fleets of one-design keelboats. By utilizing the J/70, a modern high-performance planing keelboat 23’ in length with an asymmetrical spinnaker – along with the 23’ Sonar with its symmetrical spinnaker -- the NYYC is raising the bar for competitors by testing their versatility across different boat designs as well as allowing the final decision to be made in a boat closer in philosophy to the NYYC Swan 42 -- the yacht used in the international event.

Of the twenty-four yacht clubs participating across the country, several are known to have top crews participating.  Ft Worth Boat Club has Glenn Darden from Ft Worth, TX (also a NYYC member) skippering for their team- Glenn is a past J/80 World Champion, J/105 North American Champion and top NYYC Swan 42 sailor. Also a factor in the top of the fleet will be Eastern YC's Billy Lynn, past Sonar World Champion and top J/24 and J/80 sailor from Marblehead, MA.  Alan Field from Cal YC is sailing their entry, Alan is a champion Melges 24 sailor from Marina del Rey, California.  Past Olympian Andy Lovell is sailing for Southern YC from New Orleans, LA; St Francis YC is sending champion sailor Peter Vessella; and Storm Trysail Club from Rye, New York is sending a "Q-ship" team of undercover agents that includes Jimmy & Brenda Crane.

Many other clubs are fielding top teams, including Bay Head YC from New Jersey (Russ Lucas, Mike Fortenbaugh and Peter Wright); Carolina YC from South Carolina; Edgartown YC from Massachusetts; Fishing Bay YC from Virginia; Florida YC from Jacksonville, Florida; Grand Maumelle SC from Little Rock, Arkansas; Grand Traverse YC from Michigan; Indian Harbor YC from Greenwich, Connecticut; Larchmont YC from New York (Danny Pletsch, Clay Bischoff and Cardwell Potts); Little Traverse YC from Harbor Springs, Michigan; Nantucket YC from Massachusetts; Newport Harbor YC from California; Pequot YC from Connecticut (Dave Rosow and two Dellenbaugh's); San Francisco YC from California; Seattle YC from Washington; Texas Corinthian YC from Kemah, Texas; and Youngstown YC from New York.  The competition promises to be fast, furious and extremely competitive.  Last time around, packs of boats were rounding marks en-masse leading to massive changes around every corner of the race track-- it was a bit like the children's game- "Chutes & Ladders"!  Anything that can happen, will happen.   For more New York YC Invitational Qualifying Series sailing information

J/111 sailing RORC seriesJ's @ Southampton Show
J/70, J/80, J/109, J/111 & J/122

(Southampton, England)- Key Yachting Ltd will be exhibiting five J/Boats at the Southampton Boat Show in September, including the new J/70 Speedster which will be making its UK debut.

The J/70 Speedster is J Boats’ first ramp-launchable keelboat - designed to fulfill the growing need for an easy to own, high performance one design, that is exciting to sail, stable enough sailboat for the family, and built to last. A natural evolution of its J pedigree, the J/70’s 23.0 feet of sailing length with high aspect, all carbon rig and deep, lifting keel provides spirited performance and stability that feels like a much larger boat.

The J/80 is a well-founded class in the UK.  Sportsboat classes come and go but the International J/80 (now in her eighteenth year) has truly come of age. The on-going strength of the class was proven this year with the entry of over seventy-five J/80s in the 2012 World Championship in Dartmouth in this summer.  Delightfully easy to sail, yet capable of 18 knots on a breezy day, the J/80 has its own class for the Round the Island Race and at Cowes Week and at many other regattas around the UK .

The J/109 is a fabulously successful cruiser-racer- it's lively enough to hold the interest of youngsters yet stable enough to instill sea-going confidence in sailors of all ages. The boat accelerates in the lightest of puffs, and short-tacks nimbly through narrow channels under mainsail alone. J/109 owners state this racer-cruiser is the ideal marriage of true cruising comfort and sailing performance whether daysailing, racing or cruising.

The J/111 Speedster is a powerful offshore 36 ft speedster as well as an International One-Design race-boat. Following an astonishingly successful offshore record in the first two years, the J/111 has set the precedent for her market.  The J/111 is a purposeful-looking, thoroughly performance-orientated boat.  She is balanced and easily driven as her third place in the 2011 Doublehanded Fastnet Race proves.  There is nothing like the J/111 on the market at the moment- her race results speak for themselves and she has proved herself time and time again across a variety of conditions both inshore and offshore.

The J/122 may be the quintessential 41 foot offshore cruiser racer. With its sailing-friendly deck layout and cockpit design and comfortable arrangement plan below, the J/122 is as easy to handle around buoys as it is handling your guests. Quick and responsive, powerful and stable, easy to handle and a pleasure to steer, plus a roomy hand-crafted cruising interior, the J/122 is indeed what sailing is all about. With a modest displacement, low wetted surface, and a powerful sailplan the J/122 delivers true all-round performance.  Proof? In Key West Race Week 2012, the J/122 was 1st, the J/111 2nd and the J/109 3rd!  Tough choice for cognoscenti of offshore sailing performance, comfort and speed-- a bit like comparing a Mercedes AMG S65 saloon to a Porsche Carrera 4 GTS and a BMW M-Series X5 SUV.  For more Southampton Boatshow information, please contact J/UK Key Yachting at "".

J/111 sailing ScandinaviaScandinavian Boatshows- J/111 & J/109
(Marstrand, Sweden)- The J/111 will be on display at the "Open Yard" Boatshow on the West Coast of Sweden from August 23rd to 26th.  Thereafter, the J/109 will be displayed at the "Oslo Floating Boat Show" from September 23rd to 26th.  If you wish to see either boat or request a demo sail on-board one, please be sure to contact Jan Nillson @ Marstrand Yachts- email-

J/105s sailing past Alcatraz IslandRolex Big Boat Series Preview
(San Francisco, CA)- The annual extravaganza on San Francisco Bay that many sailors along the West Coast always look forward to is the famous Rolex Big Boat Series.  This year the event has received heightened interest since it's bracketed by the two America's Cup Series events that are being held in the AC45 catamarans.  A strong fleet of 48-plus boats are participating in this annual pilgrimage to the Bay area, most are hoping to experience its infamous "nuclear wind conditions", where dogs are truly blown-off chains in the Marina Green or Presidio Beach where puffs can often exceed 30-35 kts on a good sunny, hot day that started off in the 50s and dense fog in the morning.  The cooler the fog is in the morning and the sunnier, hotter it is in the Valley beyond the hills of Berkeley, the harder it blows-- plain and simple.  For sailors who love a breeze, it's an impossible combination to beat!

Ready to blast-off the starting line will always be the San Francisco Bay J/105 fleet-- as battle-hardened a group of sailors in the Bay's notorious wind and current conditions as any.  With over thirteen boats planning to show up, they will again be the largest one-design fleet racing in the Rolex BBS.  Many familiar faces and past Rolex Submariner watch winners will be sailing, hoping to go for that "holy grail" in Rolex regattas, being a repeat winner of a Rolex Submariner!  So far, two of the teams sailing are in that category of "rare air", one is Bruce Stone racing ARBITRAGE and the other is DONKEY JACK sailed by the team of Rolf Kaiser, Shannon Ryan and Steve Kleha.  Look for these teams and perhaps some fresh new faces to challenge the status quo and give them a "run-for-the-money" and "win da watch!"

J/120s sailing upwind- credit Sharon Green/ Ultimate SailingThe J/120s often have some of the closest one-design racing of any of the fleets, with the entire class often finishing within minutes of each other with 2-3 boats overlapped going into the finish line off the St Francis YC's expansive RC balcony, finishing between the shore and the offshore yellow finish marker!  "Sea-room" is the order of the day, with crews scrambling to keep their spinnakers full while hugging the shore to avoid adverse current (a bit like the Royal Yacht Squadron line off Cowes, Isle of Wight!).  So far, three past Rolex BBS winners in the J/120 class are sailing, including Barry Lewis's CHANCE, John Wimer's DESDEMONA and Dick Swanson's GRACE DANCES.

J/125s sailing San Francisco BayCompeting in the IRC North American Championship are a trio of gun-slingers in J/125s.  If you recall, the past few years have seen the J/125 sailors crash the party in the Rolex BBS, confounding old and new racing machines alike-- in fact, absolutely destroying the new Farr 400s "boat-for-boat"!  Last year's Rolex BBS winner, the J/125 DOUBLE TROUBLE has Peter Krueger leading the charge with a team from St Francis YC that includes offshore/buoy-racing notables like Jeff "Madro" Madrigali calling tactics and Bill Erklens as Strategist with a "bunch of locals"-- yikes, if you thought Andy Costello's team last year was tough, these guys are sheer mercenaries around-the-cans!  Joining them will be Rick Ferris's AUGUST ICE from Tahoe YC on Lake Tahoe and also Tim Fuller's gang on RESOLUTE from San Diego YC-- all have stepped-up their games.  Look for the J/125s to repeat their win in the fast IRC Division if they get any kind of breeze on the Bay.  Sailing Photo Credits- Daniel Forster (Rolex)/ Sharon Green (Ultimate Sailing)/ Erik Simonson ( For more Rolex Big Boat Series sailing information

sunset sailing offshoreJ/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

As August draws to a close, there's no question our friends Down Under are beginning to dust-off their boats and look at some exciting spring sailing in the southern hemispheres.  Meanwhile, up north, several significant events were happening, including the eponymously ginormous, huge, magnificent AAM Cowes Week sailed off the Royal Yacht Squadron's famous starting line in front of Cowes, Isle of Wight on the equally famous (notorious?!) current-plagued Solent.  Fleets of J/111s, J/109s, J/80s and teams of J/97s, J/122s all had their day during the week.  A bit north in the southern parts of the Arctic Circle summers, a small cadre of J/111s, J/109s, J/92s and others were having some fun in offshore events in Scandinavia.  Across the proverbial "pond", fans of offshore sailing and around-the-cans racing were having fun in Nova Scotia's fabulous Chester Race Week held off Lunenburg.  Looking south, a number of fellow J/sailors enjoyed themselves in the second annual Penobscot Bay Rendezvous with the J/160s holding their "de facto" North Americans!  J/160s?!  Yes, J/160s including refrigeration, ovens, wine coolers, three heads, air-conditioning, heaters, hot&cold showers, electric/hydraulic winches & furlers, dodgers and windlasses. Much fun and sailing for all!

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:

Aug 24-26- J/80 Pornic Cup- Pornic, France
Sep 6-9- J/70 New York YC IQS- Newport, RI
Sep 6-9- Rolex Big Boat Series- San Francisco, CA
Sep 7-9- J/80 German Open- Schleswig-Holstein, Germany
Sep 11-14- J/22 North Americans- East Tawas, MI
Sep 12-16- J/35 North Americans- Erie, PA
Sep 13-21- J/24 Worlds- Rochester, NY
Oct 18-21- J/30 North Americans- New Orleans, LA

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

J/97 offshore cruiser racer sailboat- sailing CowesJ/97 Scotches Cowes Week
J/109 Wins Black Fleet Overall
(Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- As has been the case over the past several Cowes Weeks, the thousands of sailors having fun divining what the weather Gods have in store for them on the capricious Solent will always be a source of endless debate in the Guinness tent-- for both the podium winners that day as well as those who were on the losing end of the bets on which way was better or fastest.  In the end, following on their great performances in Scotland and Ireland, the J/97 FEVER GLENFIDDICH (scotch, that is!) sailed by Grant Gordon and crew had a dominant performance to eclipse IRC Class 5.  Other J/stablemates faired well in the broad cross-section of conditions presented to them over the course of the week.

The regatta dawned bright and sunny on day one with a brisk east to south-east wind averaging 15-20 knots, but with gusts above 25 knots, provided exhilarating conditions for the first day of racing. With the strongest gusts forecast to be in the Eastern Solent, the dayboats in White Group classes starting from the RYS line were sent on a downwind leg to a course in the western Solent, before beating back to finish on the RYS line.

In IRC Class 2, Duncan McDonald and Phil Thomas’ J/111 SHMOKIN' JOE led the fleet away, all starting towards the northern end of the line. However, while SHMOKIN' JOE and others were the first boats to cross the finish line, all had been among the seven in the class that were OCS at the start! Ouch.

J/109s sailing on a reach at Cowes WeekBy the second day the fleet saw plenty of sun and a south-westerly breeze that built to give perfect sailing conditions in 14-17 knots of wind for the event’s Family Day.  An erratically moving weather trough that brought a line of showers and light winds to Cowes just before racing was scheduled to get underway presented a headache for race officials. With the trough forecast to leave a 50-60 degree windshift in its wake, the ideal was to wait for it to pass, but it had earlier stalled for 90 minutes and threatened to do the same over Cowes. To everyone’s relief it moved away just in time to allow the starting sequences to get underway with minimal delays.

The J/109 class enjoyed the closest of racing today, with tightly fought battles right round the 19.6-mile course and a number of protests. At the start, the pack was bunched at the northern end of the line near the committee boat, with Christopher Sharples and Richard Acland’s JOLENE ll looking best placed.

J/109 offshore one-design cruiser racer sailboat at Cowes, EnglandJOLENE ll quickly tacked onto port, with Alex Ohlsson and Neil Maclachlan’s JAI HO following close behind and Dutch entry Arjen van Leeuwen’s JOULE just astern, but to windward. When they passed to the south of Lepe Spit on their way to Cowes Radio buoy, JOLENE ll still looked best placed at the head of the fleet, but it was clear many boats were locked in tight battles.  As they ran past Egypt Point under asymmetric spinnakers on the way to the finish, the leading group was still neck and neck, with each boat surging back and forward by half a length as they alternately picked up speed in a gust, or on top of a wave.

In the most adrenaline-filled finish of the day, JET, sailed by the Stanley, Walker and Williams team, extended into a marginal lead three boat lengths from the line. Two seconds after she took the winner’s cannon, another resounding bang signaled Jonathan Calascione and Jonny Goodwin’s HARLEQUIIN crossing the line. The podium appeared complete when Jamie Sheldon’s JIGSAW finished eight seconds later. With JOLENE ll crossing the line 16 seconds afterwards, the first four boats finished within 26 seconds of each other. However, both leading boats were the subject of protests. HARLEQUIN had accepted a time penalty, leaving her fourth and JOLENE ll third. But JET lost her protest and was disqualified, leaving JIGSAW as winner of the Royal Thames Danish Dish, with JOLENE ll second.  There was still more drama to come in this fleet – the next two boats in the class – JOULE and Tony Dickin’s JUBILEE – finished, just six seconds apart. Less than two minutes after that, the line was thick with J/109s, with seven boats finishing in only 38 seconds.

“The finish was great,” says Ross Walker of JET, the first boat across the line. “It’s what one-design racing is all about – it was fantastic to have four boats finishing in line abreast at the end of the race. Even though we lost the protest we’re still very happy because it was such as great race – the course setters did a grand job and the lead changed several times.

‘The class this year is still very competitive, but it has more of a family and friends feel than in the past. Most of my crew are teenagers, who are having the time of their lives – we have two of the children of the crew of BASIC INSTINCT [another J/109] on board, as well as my goddaughter, while my daughter is racing on JIGSAW.”

J/80 sailing downwind at Cowes- women's teamIn the J/80 class, Gillian Ross’s ROCK & ROLL started closest to the outer distance mark, nicely powered up and close to the line, and was first to tack offshore. Doug Neville-Jones’s JASMINE started towards the inshore end and was similarly well placed close to the line.  A few minutes into the race, Jamie Diamond’s RASCAL, the most inshore of the fleet, appeared to hook into a favourable wind shift. AQUA-J, sailed by the Stuart, Evans and Simonds syndicate, also clearly liked the look of the left-hand side of the course, tacking onto starboard and passing ahead of RASCAL. The rest of the fleet at this stage, however, opted to stay offshore in the stronger tide.

By the finish Simon Ling’s RAFBF SPITFIRE held a big lead, almost three minutes ahead of another Young Skipper’s trophy contender, William Goldsmith’s EXESS, who in turn enjoyed a three and a half minute advantage over JASMINE in third place.

By the time of the Sportsboat start at 1125, the sun was streaming through ever-larger gaps between clouds with increasing intensity and frequency. The majority of the fleet, which is racing under IRC, opted to start at the outer end of the line, with Royal 4, one of the modified J/80s owned by the RYS and Royal Thames YC looking good. On corrected time the lower-rated boats came out towards the top of the fleet. Charlie Esse, Anthony Esse and Jason Sivyer’s modified J/80 DARWIN PROPERTY INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT was second.

On Monday, the defining feature of the third day of the regatta was a gusty and shifty southerly wind that varied from less than 10 knots at times to gusts of more than 20. After a bright morning, a band of cloud with showers on its leading edge was moving eastwards towards Cowes, with very light winds forecast to follow in its wake. As a result, relatively short courses were set to make good use of the day’s best winds.

By Tuesday, the fourth day, Cowes dawned with plenty of sun and light southerly winds that started to build at 0900, reaching 10-12 knots by the time of the first starts. Later the breeze increased still further, to give puffs of up to 16 knots by late morning, before easing back to a mean speed of just over 10 knots.

White Group dayboats that started from the Royal Yacht Squadron (RYS) line headed towards the east, fighting an ebb tide. Despite this, a lot of boats were over the line at the gun, and two starts had to be recalled. At the other end of the spectrum were those who allowed themselves to be swept too far down tide of the start. Most of the successful boats started around one-third of the way out from the shore, where they gained some advantage from a weaker tidal stream but were also able to protect their air from other boats.

Then came an enormous wake-up call on Wednesday-- the proverbial "tempest in a teapot", and then some!  A vigorous and unstable cold front, associated with an un-seasonally deep low pressure system moving across southern England, upset plans for racing at Cowes Week today. Although mean wind speeds for much of the day were not forecast to be particularly severe, the possibility of sustained squalls of 33-34 knots was a serious concern for race officials.

J/80s sailing in a near gale offwindAs a result racing was abandoned for the dayboat classes in White Group and also for the smaller boats in Black Group, while the larger boats continued racing. It turned out to be a frustrating morning for many, with big holes in the wind between the showers, along with mammoth wind shifts. Between 1340 and 1350 the wind at Lymington Starting Platform varied from 9 to 33 knots, shifting by almost 40 degrees. Over the next 10 minutes it held a more constant direction, but rapidly strengthened to an average of 27 knots, with peak gusts of over 42 knots.  The squalls moved quickly up the Solent, with the first big gusts hitting Cowes just after 1400, as the leaders in IRC Class 4 were closing the finish. Flogging sails could be seen on boats that weren’t ready for the sudden change in conditions, while those who were prepared to quickly change gear for the stronger winds powered past, making good gains

By the sixth day, Thursday, the weather started settling down as the fleets themselves also started to establish a pecking order with regards to whom had begun to establish almost unassailable leads over their competitors.  With winds averaging 15 knots, with some stronger gusts, the sailors were provided ideal conditions.  This led to a fifth win for Jonathan Calascione and Jonny Goodwin’s J/109 HARLEQUIN, putting them at at the head of the class’s overall standings, while a fifth place for Christopher Sharples and Richard Acland’s JOLENE ll was sufficient to secure second overall. However, half a dozen boats were still in contention for third with two days to go.

Meanwhile, able to secure class victory with a day spare with a third place was Grant Gordon’s J/97 FEVER GLENFIDDICH in IRC Class 5- truly a dominating performance in a very tough class over many past IRC 4/ IRC 5 Cowes Week champions in the class, including Adam Gosling's Corby 30 YES!

The seventh day, Friday, saw racing concluding for the White Group dayboat classes, including the J/80. The first leg was a tight spinnaker reach for most classes, with the most enthusiastic competitors hoisting as early as possible. However, only the best sailors were able to get them filling in the disturbed air on the start line and for some it was initially more of a hindrance than a benefit.

J/80 sailboats- starting off Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes, Isle of Wight, EnglandAn individual recall on the J/80 start saw the Stuart, Evans and Simonds syndicate’s AQUA-J return to restart. It was only when the X-flag remained up that William Goldsmith’s young crew on EXESS, contenders for the Under 25 Trophy, and lying second overall in the class, realized they also needed to drop the spinnaker and return.  Goldsmith’s crew did well to recover their big deficit, finishing third behind Simon Ling’s RAFBF SPITFIRE and Jamie Diamond’s RASCAL. Ling won the class overall, counting only first places, with Goldsmith second, and a fourth place today was enough to secure third overall for Geoffrey Payne’s SURF & TURF by a two-point margin.

Although a handful of winners had emerged Thursday amongst various classes, Friday was the last day of racing for the overall prizes for Black Group classes. Jonathan Calascione and Jonny Goodwin’s HARLEQUIN had already secured an overall win in the J/109 class, but was out again today, notching up an impressive sixth win to take overall victory in Black Group. Grant Gordon’s J/97 FEVER GLENFIDDICH won IRC Class 5 again to take second in Black Group.

A new prize for 2012 was the J/111 Cowes Week Challenge Trophy, which went to J/111 class winners Jeez Louise, skippered by James Arnell. This is the second consecutive year a Brighton-based crew has won the class, with Duncan McDonald and Phil Thomas’ Shmokin Joe winners in 2011.

In the J/92 & J/92s Division, J'RONIMO won with BLACK JACK 2nd and JUST ENOUGH 3rd.  In the J/97 Division, it was FEVER GLENFIDDICH leading the pack home, followed by JACKAROO in 2nd and JET in 3rd.  In the J/122 Division, GHOST was first followed by THE SISTERHOOD in 2nd and MINT JULEP in 3rd.

J/80 junior sailors- racing Exess off Cowes at Cowes WeekIn the extra-special awards category, the Under 25s Trophy went to the gang on the J/80 EXESS with William Goldsmith!  Job well done mates!

Additional J Boat success was had by the new J/70, which entered the sportsboat class on day six. After a disappointing start at the back of the fleet, the exciting new 23 footer managed to charge her way through the fleet to finish second over the line. After the handicaps had been applied, the J/70 had earned her maiden UK victory!  Sweet!  Thanks for the news contributions by Rupert Holmes.  Sailing Photo credits- Rick Tomlinsom   For more Cowes Week sailing information

J/111 sailing upwind at Nova ScotiaJ/111s BLAST Chester Race Week
(Chester (Halifax), Nova Scotia)- Chester Race Week started out slowly and with challenging weather, but ended with glorious sun and good wind. The competitors were happy with the race management and the evening parties, which didn't start until 9:30pm and were extremely well attended with 3 great local bands and wonderful Dark'n'Stormies at the bar!

The regatta featured a huge turn-out of J's ranging from the classic J/22s, J/24s, J/27s, J/29s, J/30s, J/35s and J/36 to J/92s, J/109, J/120s, J/111s, J/42 and J/44- a total of thirty J's in all, about 36% of the fleet of 92 handicap racers.

Leading the charge in the Alpha 1 Division were the two J/111s, BLAST (Mark Surette from Royal Nova Scotia YS) and STAMPEDER (Dave Connolloy from Chester YC).  BLAST managed to pull off a strong series counting six 1sts, a 2nd and 3rd to finish with 11 pts net, well clear of the next boat by ten pts!  STAMPEDER sailed a very nice series to collect a 7-2-2-3-6-2-5-6 for 33 pts net to grab fourth in their division.

In the Alpha 2 Division top dog was the famous J/92 POOHSTICKS (Colin Mann from Lunenburg YC), pulling off a 7-1-6-6-3-4-5 for consistent finishes to grab fifth in their division.  Finishing just behind were the J/35s and J/36s, most all suffering from a controversial second race DSQ factored into their scores!

J/29s sailing one-design- Nova Scotia Chester Race WeekIn Bravo 1 Division the J/30 FLUX (Jordan MacNeil RNSYS) sailed a consistent regatta, garnering a 5-3-4-5-scp-1-4-2 for a net of 24 pts, finishing 4th by virtue of losing a tie-breaker for 3rd overall.  Johnny Wynacht, Canadian J/24 and J/29 National Champion sailed the first J/70 in Nova Scotia, finishing a credible 6th in their first outing with a slow start, but rapid finish-- scoring 9-9-6-7-1-4-3-8 for a 38 pts net, just 12 pts from the podium.  Not bad for the first day sailing the J/70 and not knowing which strings to pull first!

In Bravo 2 Division the J/30 GROOVIN (Greg Hammond) finished second with a consistent record of 4-4-3-1-2-2-5-1 for 17 net pts.  The J/22 CHEAP THRILL (Karen Fowler) was sailed fast by her lady helmsman, gathering a respectable (and very fast) 2-2-4-7-dnc-6-4-6 for 31 net pts.  Other than her DNC, Karen would have easily factored into the top three!

In the Distance 1 Division the J/120s performed brilliantly, with the J/120 BRILLIANCE (Richard Calder from RNSYS) scoring a 4-3-1-1 for 9 pts net to handily win their division.  Fourth was the other J/120 BLACK PEARL (Ross Leighton from RNSYS) with a 3-6-7-2 for 18 pts net.

In Distance 2 Division the J/109 WISC (Paul Rafuse from RNSYS) sailed beautifully to get 4-1-7-4 to finish with 16 pts net, good enough for 2nd in their division.  Also sailing well was the gorgeous J/42 CASTANEA (Paul Conrod from RNSYS) that managed a tally of 2-6-3-7 to net 18 pts, just 2 pts off 2nd.  Close racing, indeed, in this group of fast cruiser-racers!

J/24 one-design sailboatFinally in the two J/One-Design divisions you have a literal wolf-pack of J/24s and J/29s sailing, neither fleet was won in a runaway.  In fact, the regatta outcome hung in the balance of the last race or two for both fleets!  In the J/24s, it was Greg Blunden on ADRENALIN RUSH that won a tiebreaker over Hamblin's JAMMIN. Blunden's `-5-3-1-1-3-2 for 12 pts net won on 1sts over Hamblin's 9-1-2-2-3-2-2 for 12 pts, too.  Third on the podium was decided by yet another tie-breaker!  "Holy Tie-breaker Hell" said Robin to Batman.  How can this be?  Ross Romney's RUSH HOUR managed to score a 6-6-1-4-2-5-4 for 22 pts and Ted Murphy's JUVENILE DELINQUENT tallied a 4-7-4-5-4-4-1 for the same 22 pts, but lost.  The nod went to Ross's RUSH HOUR crew to fill out the 3rd spot on the podium.

chester sailing week volunteersIn J/29 World, with even more on the line with the recent J/29 North Americans having been run nearly concurrently, it was going to be "local bragging rights" to see who could party hardest, go the fastest, sail the smartest to win this division!  In the end, it was pretty remarkable to see Andrew Childs' team on SILVER WOMAN top the 29 charts with a spanking of the class- a 1-1-4-4-2-1-3 for 12 net pts laid down the gauntlet for all to match.  Next up was past champion SCOTCH MIST IV sailed by Chris Mac Donald with a 6-2-5-2-1-4-2 for 16 net pts.  Third sailing well were Matt & Scott Christie with a somewhat steady 3-3-3-5-8-2-1 for 17 net pts (imagine what might have happened had they not had to toss an 8th!).  Fourth was the Williams/ Matthews crew on PARADIGM SHIFT and 5th was Jim Mason's SATISFACTION.  Sailing photo credits- Heather McGuire/ Tim Wilkes -   For more Chester Race Week sailing information

J/111 sailing Sweden, Norway, Denmark on Baltic SeaJ/111 BLUR Frosts Arctic Circle/ Baltic Sea Circuit
(Somewhere in Northern Europe- a.k.a. Scandinavia)- It's been a great season for many of the Swedish J/Boats.  Long time J/boat aficionado, Peter Gustafsson, got his new J/111 BLUR in time for SPI-Ouest France and managed a top three finish! But before handing his old J/109 BLUR over to the new owner, he and his team won both the Marstrand Big Boat Race and the inshore part of AF Offshore Race (Around Gotland Race).

Back on-board the new J/111 BLUR for the balance of the Scandinavian sailing summer, they quickly adapted to the boat. Here's Peter's quick summary of their sweet summer season aboard the 111:

"We were 3rd in the super competitive R40-class in Færderseilasen in Norway, 2nd in class in Around Hermano, winning the feeder race to Around Tjorn and last weekend they topped it off with a 3rd overall of 436 boats in Around Tjorn, Sweden's largest yacht race.

The Around Tjorn is the highlight of the year for many, gathering all kinds of boats and sailors. This year we had Fredrik Loof straight from winning the Olympic Gold Medal in his Star and the Swedish guys from GROUPAMA (Volvo Ocean Race Winners) racing in the 28 mile race around the island of Tjorn.

We had very close racing with the two First 40s that came first and second. We led on the first beat despite winds up to 14-16 knots but when it opened up, it quickly became a waterline race. We knew we were faster downwind, so we just had to hang in there. Turning the corner, the chase begun through the narrow passages in the archipelago. It was just crazy, doing 15 knots with the big kite just a few feet away from the rocks. In the end we were very close but lost out on handicap.

To round of a great weekend I did the same course solo on Sunday after the race. We were ten boats that tested if the format would work for a new solo race in 2013. Sailing the J/111 solo worked beautifully!! I really love the boat.

On the agenda for the season is to top 20 knots-- so we have the crew on standby for one or two September low pressures!"  We wish them well.  We have NO DOUBT (like the famous musician) they will top 20+ knots boatspeed!

Other J/boats that's are winning races in Sweden are J/105 JAVELIN with Sebastian Larsson who won Around Naset overall and the J/97 SAILING FOR JESUS skippered by Lennart Jansson who won his class in Hermano Runt.   Sailing photo credits- Ake Fredriksson
Sailing reports:

J/160 offshore cruiser sailboat- sailing Penobscot BayPenobscot Bay Rendezvous Fireworks!
TRUE Wins J/160 Cruise!
(Camden, Maine)- Last year's inaugural event was a smashing success! The 2012 Penobscot Bay Rendezvous, August 16-19 once again proved to be one of Maine's most exciting sail and powerboat regattas of the season. Super yachts, to classics to performance racers, passage-making power cruisers, Picnic Boats and lobster yachts all participated. The Penobscot Bay Rendezvous is a celebration of boating, featuring daily races for sailboats and a Poker Run and Photo Pursuit events for powerboats, the participants were treated each night to lobster bakes, barbecues, dancing and fireworks.

Rockland was the center of attention on Friday with the "Texas Flying Legends" airshow starting the event off the Rockland breakwater. Saturday’s destination was Camden Harbor where guests danced the night away to the seven-piece dance band "Groove Authority".

This year was the first ever J/160 North American Championship with five J/160s participating!  The underlying premise for the J/160s was keep it simple and keep it fun.  They had a one-design start with a simple but modest handicap of six seconds a mile given to the shoal draft boats.   #3 jibs and mainsails were the full sail complement so two of the boats were easily handled with one couple sailing double-handed. The competition was spirited with fine 20 knot breezes on Friday, a challenging day of light air on Saturday and a bit more breeze on Sunday. Abundant sunshine, mostly blue skies, lobster pots, seals and the Camden Hills as a back drop made for a glorious sailing experience.

P51 Mustang Thunderbolt sailing over J/160s in Penobscot Bay, MaineAll participants were treated to fabulous parties,  an intimate (50 yards away) fireworks display, a unforgettable half hour World War II era air show amongst the fleet pre-start on Friday, live music and of course great camaraderie.

All of the 160s have been down island, Mexico, or across the "Big Ponds" (Pacific or Atlantic).  Some skippers were in their second race ever-- and some had more extensive experience.  The winner, Howie Hodgson is in his second year with his 160 TRUE, with a custom and elegant interior with three heads, three cabins and a massive nav station - perfect for this long legged Greyhound of a yacht!

The J/160 class order of finish was as follows- 1st TRUE (Howie Hodgson), 2nd ATLANTIC (Ben Blake), 3rd HERON (Jay Pasco-Anderson), 4th SEPTEMBER MORNING (Judy Jellinek) and 5th LADY HAWK (Steve Grigg).

PHRF 2 had a battle royal on Sunday with the J/80, J/29, and two J/100s all tied for first with five points.  The J/100 skippers are both retired gentlemen with strong racing backgrounds and competitive juices still running in their veins.  The J/29 was sailed by Larry Turner, a former America's Cup bow man who took delivery of his new but well used boat the day before the Rendezvous--- and a very well sailed local J/80 with owner Jesse Henry and Penobscot Bay Wizard and all-time J/24 genius, Jeff Dinse on board.  Local knowledge won the day!  Jesse's J/80 CHAISE LOUNGE won over Larry's J/29 RENEGADE.

In Double-handed, Tom Babbitt's laid back approach on his J/42 BRAVO (full cockpit cushions and dodger deployed, full bookshelves below, shoal draft, aluminum mast, grill on the stern rail, crew average age in the sixties ) proved victorious with grit on the windy day (refusing to reef with a 155 percent genoa in 20 knots) and intense concentration (for senior citizens) in the tricky light stuff.

Single-Handed saw Scott Miller on his J/122 RESOLUTE, veteran of a couple of short-handed races to Bermuda, take the top prize over Ron Hart on his J/109 for a J-sweep of the top two spots.   Sailing photo credits- Billy Black


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

Heather Gregg-Earl sailing IOD on Nantucket* Heather Gregg-Earl Dominates Nantucket Pro-Am Regatta! Nantucket Race Week’s featured IOD Celebrity Invitational Regatta started with a whimper and finished with a bang. On day one, PRO John Mendez and his hard working team managed to complete just one race in a light northerly, followed by abandonment and towlines to get everyone home. A day later, Nantucket Sound delivered signature conditions, 15 – 20 knots of wind, four tight races with constant changing of positions, and many exhausted crew by day’s end.

In the regatta’s unique format, many of North America’s best sailors act as tacticians, each being matched with a participating helmsman and team whose regatta fees and “bids” for tactician selection raised nearly $50,000 for Nantucket Community Sailing. The local IOD Fleet Association makes its fleet of identical International One Design sloops available for the benefit of the NCS fundraiser.

In the end, Heather Gregg-Earl of Stage Harbor YC and New York YC (J/70 owner and past J/24 Champion sailor and Tufts Jumbo Collegiate All-American Woman Sailor) became the first female winner of the event. Her celebrity tactician was sailmaker and champion Robbie Doyle, along with crew members Miles Cameron, Michael Obuchowski and Will Christenson.

Runner-up Gary Jobson (J/22 owner), President of US Sailing and Honorary Chairman of Nantucket Race Week entered as helmsman for the first time, switching from prior years’ role as tactician (for Democratic Senator John Kerry in each of the past two years). Jobson’s tactician was Dee Smith, who has been consistently near top of this competitive fleet three consecutive times. Together the crew might have been dubbed "Team Who’s Who", with champions and longtime sailing partners Jud Smith, Hank Stewart and Jim Porter.

Nantucket IOD fleet founder Peter McCausland was a strong third place, with tactician Geoff Moore (J/24 Champion) and McCausland’s regular crew members Steve Mead, Fritz McClure, Charlie McGill and Graham Kilvert.

Other Celebrity Tacticians rounded out an all-star roster, together representing countless national, world and collegiate championships, Americas Cup contests, Olympic Games, and offshore events – Chuck Allen, Sally Barkow, Andrew Campbell, David Dellenbaugh, Kevin Farrar, Cam Lewis, Dave Perry, Mark Reynolds and Will Welles (bold are all J/Sailors!). Honorary Chairman Tom Whidden welcomed participants at the opening reception, where Ken Read of Puma Ocean Racing (and past multiple J/24 World Champion) later presented thrilling video of the Volvo Ocean Race. Later, at the trophy presentation, Whidden said, “My wife Betsy and I love to come to this wonderful destination, it's great sailing for a great cause. We appreciate all that Nantucket Community Sailing stands for, and we are delighted to have an opportunity to lend our support.”   Sailing photo credits- Karen Ryan Photography   For more Nantucket Race Week Pro-Am sailing information

J/22 and J/29 owner- POWERPLAY- Peter Cunningham* J/22 owner and past J/29 owner of boats called POWERPLAY, Peter Cunningham of the Cayman Islands, managed to walk off with top honors in IRC Class 0 in the AAM Cowes Week in his latest POWERPLAY, a recent vintage TP52 that includes past J/24 Champion Tony Rey amongst his crew as tactician!  Congratulations to Peter, Tony and crew for a job well done on the Solent!  Sailing photo credit- Rick Tomlinson

* The J/105 Class latest owner, Dennis Conner, recently had an interview with the J/105 Class and shared his thoughts on his newest fleet as well as his sailing career.  When asked what led him to purchase the J/105 PHOLLY (Lowell North's original boat #3), his answer was clear- the 2012 J/105 North American Championship at San Diego Yacht Club this October 17-21. He summed it up simply, "I like to race, and this is a chance to race against friends, like Dennis and Sharon Case."

Long-time members of the J/105 Class, the Case Family actively campaigns WINGS, and as Conner's neighbor, just might have had a little influence on DC's recent purchase. "Case is the favorite to win the championship," Conner said proudly of his friend. Although he has yet to race on a J/105, Conner plans to learn his way around DC's PHOLLY in the coming weeks prior to the North American Championship. With almost 700 J/105s in existence, hull #3 has obviously been around for a while. Does DC's PHOLLY need a little TLC? "It needs a little help because it hasn't been sailed much," he admitted. "Our local fleet takes excellent care of their boats, so I'll have to get mine up to those standards. They are such beautiful boats."

Conner noted that J/105 Fleet 8 has a reputation for its intensity and he commended the Class for its favorable reputation. "The boats hold their value quite well, which is a testament to the Class." Regatta participation has gone down in many classes over the past year or two, but Conner complemented the J/105 Class for holding its own compared to other fleets. "The J/105s really are a robust Class. We've seen the Etchells fleet drop locally from 45 to 12, but not the J/105s." He called out two primary factors in the current struggle facing many fleets and yacht clubs in maintaining members and participation-time and money. "With two people working, not everyone has the time it takes to be competitive."

In his opinion, the J/105 Class has built-in cost control with its sail purchase limits, plus used boat prices are very reasonable. "This bodes well for the J/105 Class." In a career with a plethora of achievements, three particular accomplishments stick out in Conner's mind. "Winning the Star Worlds in 1977 with 89 boats," he recalled. "It was in Kiel, Germany, and we won every race." And it would be hard not to recall the four America's Cup victories and a bronze medal from the 1976 Olympics.

The champion was quick to tip his cap to a few other fellow contestants, including Buddy Melges, runner-up in the "America's Greatest Sailor" contest, and legendary Lowell North. "I really look up to Lowell," Conner commended. "Imagine, four Star National Championships and being the world's best sailmaker. He is my hero." Conner is registered for the J/105 North American Championship, and predicted entrants will see ideal conditions on the race course with steady Southwest breezes of 7-14 knots. He also expects stellar shoreside activities at the San Diego Yacht Club. As far as his own expectations, "I'm not sure what to expect. I'm realistic, and my goal is to be competitive and enjoy the regatta. I'm just excited to be part of it!"

America's Cup Champion/ J/24 Champion- Terry Hutchinson* America's Cup sailors participating in this week's ACWS 2013 Season Opener in San Francisco Bay are again having to put up with a strong contingent of past and current J/Sailors tossing a monkey-wrench into the works.  Starting with recent Ben Ainslie- J/109 sailor/ Olympic Gold MedallistGold Medal Olympian Ben Ainslie, he's on "training wheels" this week and progressing rapidly- having done well on the Match Race front and learning the ropes in the fleet racing-- a combination of dinghy and keelboat (J/109 & J/24/ IC24) experience have contributed to his open-minded approach to success.  Giving Ben and others a run for the money are J/24 World Champion Terry Hutchinson directing the Team ARTEMIS program along with other J/Alumni on other teams-- perhaps the Spanish sometime soon (Iker Martinez and friends from J/80 World in Spain?).

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-

Featured Boat

J/122 cruiser-racer sailboat- Gambler for saleJ/122 GAMBLER For Sale

GAMBLER is a 2008 J/122 that is ready to continue winning races, or go cruising!  If you are looking for a 40' dual purpose sailboat, GAMBLER can do it all!  There are very few J/122's with the winning pedigree that GAMBLER has and even fewer with the 3 cabin layout. GAMBLER has been optimized for racing with top notch bottom and foil preparation, she's a past J/122 North American Champion.  The sail inventory is all North and includes NEW 3Di sails!

Please contact Scott Spurlin at:  Scott@JBoatsSouthwest or Toll free at: 1-877-596-8430