Wednesday, February 20, 2013

J/Newsletter- February 20th, 2013

J/88 the ultimate sailing machine- a 30 ft speedster 
New! J/88 Family Speedster
(Newport, RI)- From the J design/build team that launched the J/70 and J/111, comes the NEW J/88, a 29’ mid-size family speedster with stability, style and sailing comfort. J/88 hits the sweet-spot in J Boat’s performance sprit range – large enough to provide the creature comforts of a sit-in cockpit, inboard diesel, overnighting interior and head; and small enough to be single-point lifted, owner trailered and stored.

If sailing is having your cake and eating it too, then the J/88 will be like ordering the whole dessert menu. Design highlights include a high-aspect, non-overlapping sail plan (no genoas) with a carbon fiber, double-spreader mast - deck stepped for easy rigging, tuning and keeping the main cabin dry. The 6.5 ft fixed, low VCG keel with molded GRP finish is similar to the J/70’s, ensuring a fair, smooth foil for every boat.  The result will be a ride that’s every bit as exciting as the J/88’s speedster siblings - fast and balanced upwind with planing performance downwind in moderate to fresh breezes.

On deck, the daysailing comforts include a spacious T-shaped cockpit (J/111 style) with seating and backrests forward of the floor-mounted traveler and a wide-open cockpit aft due to the tiller-steered, transom mounted high-aspect rudder.  Adding to J/88’s ease-of-sailing characteristics is an in-deck jib furler, retractable carbon bowsprit and cockpit-led sail controls.  Belowdecks, the J/88 sports a weekending layout with two full length settees, Igloo cooler, galley sink, private head forward of bulkhead and optional V-berth.

J/88 hull #1 is projected to launch in June 2013!  For more J/88 sailing information and details, please contact your local J/Dealer or J/Boats at "".

J/22 Midwinters Preview
(Tampa, FL)- The J/22 class is returning to Davis Island Yacht Club in Tampa Bay for its J/22 Midwinter Championships.  As one of the "sailingest" yacht clubs in the South, the DIYC always goes the extra mile to take care of its sailors and has deservedly gained the reputation as one of the nicest yacht clubs to host major events in the South.  Plus, one of the big bonuses often cited by the sailors is that the bar is great and the course can be viewed from the deck, just about a half mile or less away!

Nearly twenty J/22s are participating in this year's Midwinters and, given the experiences from J/Teams sailing in recent regattas on Tampa Bay, the J/22s can expect the entire smorgasbord of weather conditions, from light to heavy, choppy to flat and warm to cold-- pretty typical for this time of year on the Bay!  Top talent is showing up and one can expect that amongst the leaders will be J/22 champions like Chris Doyle and Will Harris on THE JUG 41 leading the Rochester fleet contingent along with Travis Odenbach and Patrick Wilson on HONEY BADGER.  Top Chesapeake Bay teams of Allan "Albie" Terhune sailing DAZZLER and Jeff Todd's HOT TODDY will figure into the mix.  Then, can't forget the Texas gangster, lead by past World Champion Terry Flynn on TEJAS along with Casey Lambert's team on BLACKBURN MARINE RACING.  Good luck to all and, above all, have fun!  Should be excellent racing this coming weekend.  For more J/22 Midwinters sailing information

J/70 Moscow Boat Show
(Moscow, Russia)- Recently, the J/Russia team of Grigory Aksenov and Dmitrii Zaritckii picked up their new J/70 MOJO in Les Sables d'Olonne, France, drove down to Monte Carlo, Monaco and sailed MOJO in the Yacht Club Monaco's Primo Cup regatta on the Mediterranean.  After having a fabulous time getting to know the Monagesque and Italian J/70 sailors, and enjoying some of Monaco's renown nightlife, Grigory and Dmitrii drove MOJO back to Kaliningrad, that beautiful Russian city on the southeastern end of the Baltic Sea.

Now, the J/Russia Team are taking their J/70 MOJO eastward to Moscow to attend the Moscow Boat Show- running from March 12th to 17th- for the introduction of the J/70 speedster to the Russian Sailing Federation and to all Russian sailors east and west!  For anyone in the European area, this is a great opportunity to travel to Moscow, enjoy its remarkable history and culture (plus great food & drink!) and "talk shop", discussing the rapid growth of the J/70 in Europe and the enormous enthusiasm Russian sailors have for the J/70.

Please be sure to contact Grigory ( or Dmitrii ( for an appointment and let them know you're attending!     For more J/70 Moscow Boat Show sailboat information

J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

February offers up some stark contrasts in some parts of the world, bordering almost on the unbelievable.  "Mid-summer" series are taking place at the same time as "midwinter" series!  What fun!  And, both are sailed in somewhat warm, sometimes cold, somewhat breezy, sometimes gale-force weather conditions!  In Capetown, South Africa, for example, they recently finished sailing their Royal Cape YC Mid-Summer FLING Regatta with J/Teams sailing on a J/111, J/105, J/27 and J/22!  Nearer to the Equator, the RORC was running its "600" Race meandering in a lazy figure-of-eight around the Caribbean island chain with the J/39 SLEEPER VIII having a go of it.  Then, just west of them, the J/120 REBECCA just sailed the Pineapple Cup- Montego Bay Race that takes a right-turn around Cuba's Guantanamo Bay to finish at the picturesque, most-welcoming club ever, the MoBay Yacht Club!  Heading a bit further West, up into the Gulf of Mexico, the Tampa Bay area recently held the J/24 Midwinters at Davis Island YC and just next door on the next weekend, the St Petersburg YC hosted another Sperry Topsider NOOD Regatta St Pete, hosting a huge fleet of J/70s and J/24s.  Leaping across America to the West Coast (a.k.a. "Left Coast"), several "midwinter" series are taking place in the greater Los Angeles/ San Diego region in "SoCal".  One of the first events to complete was the Santa Barbara YC's Hot Rum Series that had "pursuit-style" racing across three classes and for overall honors for a fleet that consisted of J/22, J/24, J/105s, J/29, J/92 and a J/145.  Next up was the recent Southern California Yachting Association Midwinters that saw one-design fleets of J/80s, J/105s and J/120s participating at California YC and San Diego YC.  Finally, Marina del Rey's Del Rey YC Berger Series for offshore PHRF racing has started and ends later in May.

Read on! The J/Community and Cruising section below has many entertaining stories and news about J/Sailors as well as cruising blogs about those who 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:

Feb 16-24- New England Boatshow (70)- Boston, MA
Feb 28-Mar 13- J/22 Midwinters- Davis Is YC- Tampa, FL
Mar 2-10- Stockholm Sailboat Show (70)- Stockholm, Sweden
Mar 6-9- Bacardi Miami Sailing Week (70, 80)- Miami, FL
Mar 6-10- HISWA Amsterdam Boatshow (70)- Amsterdam, Holland
Mar 8-10- J/105 Midwinters- Lakewood YC- Seabrook, TX
Mar 12-17- Moscow Boat Show (70)- Moscow, Russia
Mar 13-17- Oslo Sailboat Show (70)- Oslo, Norway
Mar 15-17- San Diego NOOD Regatta- San Diego, CA
Mar 17-Apr 28- Warsash Spring Series- Warsash, England
Mar 28-Apr 1- SPI Ouest France- La Trinite sur Mer, France
Apr 11-14- Strictly Sail Pacific (70, 111)- Alameda, CA
Apr 18-21- Charleston Race Week (22, 24, 70, 80)- Charleston, SC
May 3-5- Annapolis NOOD Regatta- Annapolis, MD
May 17-19- Seattle NOOD Regatta- Seattle, WA
Jun 7-9- Chicago NOOD Regatta (105, 109, 111)- Chicago, IL
Jun 7-9- New York YC Annual Regatta (111, 122)- Newport, RI
Jun 23-28- Block Island Race Week- (80, 35, 105, 109, 111, 44)- Block Island, RI
Jul 6-13- J/80 World Championships- Marseilles, France
Jul 13-15- Chicago Mackinac Race- Chicago YC- Chicago, IL
Jul 18-22- New York YC Race Week (105, 111)- Newport, RI
Aug 9-11- Verve Cup Offshore (109, 111)- Chicago, IL
Aug 14-18- J/111 North Americans- Chicago YC- Chicago, IL

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

J/70 CATAPULT Wins St Pete
Brown Takes J/24 Class & Overall NOOD Title
(St Petersburg, FL)- It’s hard to remember a class that has hit the ground running faster than the J/70 class. Amateur sailors from a variety of other classes are scrambling to get in and get good, while representatives from every sailmaker are investing a lot of time and effort to get the early jump on sail design, rig tune, and boat-handling techniques.

None of this will diminish the importance or satisfaction gained from a regatta win, but it does add another layer of intrigue to any J/70 regatta in 2013. Who won is as important has how they did it.  The Sperry Top-Sider St. Petersburg NOOD Regatta was the NOOD debut for the J/70 class, and it did so in style with 20 boats signed up to sail.

Unseasonably cool conditions dominated the 16th edition of the Sperry Top-Sider St. Pete NOOD. But with the cool weather came breeze, and sailors generally prefer wind and cool weather to balmy temps and glassy seas. Those who braved the wind chill on Tampa Bay Friday through Sunday were rewarded with near perfect racing conditions, which enabled the race officials to run up to 11 races for each of the nine classes.

The biggest class was the fledgling J/70 class, with 20 entries. As the J/24 did when it debuted the late 1970s, the J/70 is attracting a lot of interest in its first full year of one-design racing. Joel Ronning, of Minneapolis, MN sailed his brand new boat, CATAPULT with Willem Van Waay and Jeremy Wilmot and a St Pete YC Sailing Center Opti sailor to win the J/70 class by 20 points with a 1-4-4-1-1-2-1-6-2-2 record.  It wasn't easy as the CATAPULT team was challenged by several boats over the course of the regatta, but a combination of incredibly shifty conditions, OCS's and misjudged boat-handling (shrimping and broaches) in the 15-25 kt breezes encountered on Saturday's and Sunday's racing practically eliminated CATAPULT's principal competition.  Nipping at their heels the entire regatta was the team of Will Welles (Newport, RO) and Ethan Bixby (local sailor from St Pete) sailing RASCAL, winning two races, but having to recover from an OCS in a critical race meant the RASCAL boys had to settle for a 3-6-3-5-3-1-8-10-4-1 scoreline for a total of 44 pts to take second overall.  Just behind them in third overall was MENACE, on-board were past J/22 and J/80 World Champions sailing as a team, Kerry Klingler (Larchmont, NY) and Terry Flynn (Houston, TX), sailing their best series to date and compiling a 6-19-2-7-4-8-3-4-1-4 tally for 58 points.

Behind the top three was a real battle for the balance of the top five.  In the hunt were the teams of LIFTED (Jim Cunningham- Tiburon, CA), USA 171 (Peter Vessella- San Francisco, CA), MUSE (Heather Gregg-Earl & Joe Bardenheier- Boston, MA), JUNGLELAND (Chris & Carolyn Groobey- Annapolis, MD), SURGE (Jeff Perini) and USA 69 (Joe Colling- Bath, OH).  With all six teams within ten points of one another going into the last day, anything could happen to settle the score for the top five.  In the end, Jeff Perini's team sailed well in the final day's extremely shifty winds filled with enormous puffs and holes to beat out the others to secure 4th overall.  Fifth went to Jim Cunningham's LIFTED team, beating out USA 171 by 3 pts and MUSE by 4 pts!  It was fun, close racing overall with lots of reports of J/70s hitting 15-16+ knots in the windy, wavy conditions!

St. Pete local Robby Brown dominated the 15-boat J/24 class winning seven of 11 races. By virtue of the impressive win over some top competition, Brown, whose boat USA 799 first touched water 35 years ago, was selected as the overall winner for the regatta. That honor includes a trip to the British Virgin Islands in November, where Brown and his crew will get a chance to battle for national bragging rights  against the overall winners from the other five Sperry Top-Sider NOOD Regattas.

Robby Brown (seen here second from the left) and the crew of the J/24 USA 799 celebrate their overall win in the 2013 Sperry Top-Sider St. Petersburg NOOD Regatta. This is Brown's second time winning the overall honors, but after being unable to go to the Caribbean the first time he is determined to make it to the BVI in November for the NOOD Championships.

Robby commented about his win, "A huge thanks to everyone aboard Team 799 this past weekend! Seen here rounding first with our complete North inventory. A fantastic job by all. Despite Travis Odenbach and Team Honey Badger's attempt to cripple our trimmer on Saturday night, our team performed at top speed all weekend. We were honored to be chosen the Overall event winner for the second time and will definitely represent Tampa Bay in the Virgin Islands for the Championships this November. A HUGE thanks to Nate Vilardebo, Stephanie Karidas, Karen Regan (the future wife) and Matt, our newly discovered secret weapon. Thanks to the event organizers for an outstanding regatta, and we were absolutely blessed with some superb sailing conditions on Tampa Bay all weekend!"    Sailing World's Stu Streuli Interviewed Robby Brown, please see it here.   For more J/70 and J/24 Sperry Topsider NOOD St Petersburg Regatta sailing information

j24 sailboat in regattaMollicone Dominates J/24 Midwinters
Newport Fleet #50 Steamrolls Competition
(Tampa, FL)- John Mollicone's HELLY HANSEN team has seized the lead after five races on the opening day and never looked back.  Taking four 1sts and three 2nds in ten races, John Mollicone from Newport, RI and his HELLY HANSEN team were crowned 2013 J/24 Midwinter Champions. With Tim Healy, Geoff Becker, Dan Rabin and Gordon Borges, the group was able to spectate the last of the 10-race series to allow the other 19 teams to duke out the remaining places.

Will Welles, also from Newport Fleet #50, skippered COUGAR to an impressive series and 26 points for second place, starting off fast to lead the series after four races but dropping back in the end, collecting a 2-1-5-4-6-1-2-3-8-2.  Peter Bream’s TEAM TARHEEL accumulated 43 points for third overall but had to work very hard to three other teams that could have easily grabbed the last spot on the podium.  Dueling for the bronze and just 1 pt back with 44 pts was Mike Ingham's team on USA 5448 from Rochester, NY in 4th place; Tony Parker's "AI" team in 5th place just two points back with 47 pts; and in 6th was Travis Odenbach on HONEY BADGER tied with Tony Parker on points but losing the tie-breaker!  Close racing, indeed!

Conditions in sunny Tampa Bay remained gorgeous on Wednesday, with breeze between 14-16 knots and puffs to 18. Mollicone praised the “champagne sailing conditions” as the best he’s ever seen there. On the heels of winning last November’s J/24 North American Championship, Mollicone thanked his consistent team, saying “We’ve got a good team, but the biggest thing is we’ve got the same people all the time, and it makes a big difference in our crew mechanics and communication.” The group put in some practice time and training before the event which “helped a lot with getting comfortable again on the J/24 after taking some time off,” Mollicone explained. His dependable group will be heading to Howth, Ireland in August for the J/24 World Championship, but he’ll turn over the helm to Tim Healy. “We’ll just switch roles, and then next year I’ll drive in Newport (for the 2014 J/24 Worlds),” shared Mollicone. In Wednesday’s final two races, Mollicone and Tony Parker took the bullets.

The top ten J/24 teams overall were: 1st- John Mollicone (21 points), 2nd- Will Welles (26), 3rd- Peter Bream (43), 4th- Mike Ingham (44), 5th- Tony Parker (47), 6th- Travis Odenbach (47), 7th- Chris Jankowski (76), 8th- Robby Brown (77), 9th- Darby Smith (80) and 10th- John Poulson (84).   For more J/24 Midwinters sailing information and results

J/120 REBECCA Wins Pineapple Cup MoBay Race!
(Montego Bay, Jamaica)- Following a relatively mellow light-air start, Glenn Gault's team on the J/120 REBECCA from League City, TX eventually enjoyed double-digit reaching conditions to become first in PHRF division in the 31st biennial Pineapple Cup – Montego Bay Race Presented by Appleton Estate Jamaica Rum.

The annual ocean race of 811 nautical miles started on Friday, February 8 at Florida’s Port Everglades, sending the 'MoBay' fleet of ten boats--sailing in IRC and PHRF divisions--on a challenging all-points-of-sail course to Montego Bay, Jamaica. Shockwave crossed the finish line on Sunday, February 10 with an elapsed time of two days, 11 hours, 23 minutes and two seconds, just short of the current race record that was set in 2005 by Titan 12. Due to the favorable conditions, all of the boats had crossed the finish line by Tuesday evening, February 12, two days earlier than expected.

One of the navigators on the race said there were two different theories regarding the expected weather for the race. "One was that it would be light at the start but very solid the rest of the way to Jamaica; the other forecast was for a light and variable breeze to carry on for the first 12 hours of the race, and that proved to be the case."

Immediately after the start, racers cross the Gulf Stream for the Northwest Providence Channel. The middle of the race offers a fetch down the eastern side of the Bahamas Island Chain toward the tip of Cuba. The final stretch is a sailor’s dream: a 240-mile downwind sleigh ride from Cuba’s eastern tip, known as the Windward Passage, to the finish at Montego Bay. After this year’s finish, sailors were treated to a week of fun with cocktail parties every night, steel bands, limbo dancing and other memorable displays and competitions, ending with a dinner, dance and prize giving ceremony on Friday, February 15.

Glenn Gault’s REBECCA finished at 21:08:59 on February 13th, just in time to join the tail end of the "Early Bird Cocktail Party" at the Montego Bay Yacht Club.  The complimentary case of Red Stripe tasted great and was a good prelude for a good night’s sleep. The crews are all cleaning up and catching up to be ready for the rest of the weeks festivities and the Friday night event to see who takes home the coveted Pineapple Cup! There was even more to celebrate for Glenn's REBECCA team for beating two of the world's fastest Class 40s and a Santa Cruz 52 for overall PHRF honors!  Sailing Photo Credits- Marco Oguendo! For more Pineapple Cup/ Montego Bay Race Sailing information

J/39 Blasts Off On RORC 600!
(English Harbour, Antigua)- A flash of smoke, high above the "Pillars of Hercules" announced the start of the 5th edition of the RORC Caribbean 600. Before the start 25 knots of trade winds, gusting close to 30, provided feisty conditions.  Nevertheless, the sailors were quite excited as this meant the "big boys" would be targeting record-setting wind conditions for the race-- faster than 42 hours for 600nm!!

"At the moment, the forecasts seem to be quite stable," advised Hugh Agnew, a renown navigator and veteran offshore racer. "We can expect 20-26 knots of easterly wind, maybe slightly to the south of due east for the duration of our race. The longest leg of the course is from St. Barth's to Guadeloupe and with this wind direction, coupled with the apparent wind created by the boats, it will be forward of the beam, so many boats will be unlikely to fly a spinnaker. This will slow them down, but the other side of the coin is that this wind direction may be beneficial on a crucial part of the course-the south side of Guadeloupe. If we get a one-sided beat, requiring few tacks, this could really work in the fleets favor."

It has been a fast race so far on what is a pretty "reach" offshore course with some long fetches and beats interspersed amongst the "islands" course.  After a yeoman's effort last year, Jonty Layfield's team from the United Kingdom have continued to modernize their sail inventory and have their beautiful J/39 SLEEPER VIII rolling along quite fast!  At this moment at 1500 hours on Thursday, Feb 21, their lying about 75 nm from the finish line and are currently leading IRC 3 Class!  We wish them luck and wish them more Fair Winds & God Speed! you can follow them with Race tracking on Yellowbrick    Sailing Photo credits- Tim Wright/   For more RORC Caribbean 600 sailing information

J/Teams Enjoy Warm SCYA Midwinters
J/80s, J/105s, J/120s Racing One-Design
(Marina del Rey, CA)- The SCYA Midwinter Regatta’s history is packed with legendary sailors and their boats from the early days to the present. In 1928, SCYA and the LA Junior Chamber of Commerce teamed up to sponsor the first Midwinters which was promoted as an example of the sports “paradise” that Southern California offered in the winter. As hoped, the event attracted boats from the Great Lakes, Atlantic Coast and the rest of the Pacific Coast, and some of the best known yachtsmen in America, including Clifford Mallory, John Alden and Herbert Stone, editor of Yachting. Yachtsmen have continued to come west and from up and down the West Coast for the SCYA Midwinters ever since.  Hosting over 2,000 sailors at over a dozen venues around Southern California, the local clubs put on quite a show and generally offer excellent race management for the highly competitive one-design classes attending.

One of the largest J contingents is hosted at San Diego Yacht Club, with strong fleets of J/80s, J/105s and J/120s participating.  In the J/120 class, there were some familiar names filling out the top three on the podium.  Winning the event in this hotly contested class was Chuck Nichols on CC RIDER, winning the last two races to overtake his friend John Laun on the great yacht CAPER!  Third was Mike Hatch sailing the mighty J-ALMIGHTY!

After an exhausting fall 2012 sailing nearly four J/105 regattas in a row, it's a wonder any of the San Diego J/105 sailors crawled off their  physiotherapists beds to go sailing a J/105 again, so soon!  Nevertheless. off they went and one of the top dogs locally took home the silverware again, with Dennis & Sharon Case on WINGS sailing a closely fought series to win with three 1sts and two 2nds, beating friends Rick Goebel and gang on SANITY by just 3 pts!  Lying third was Dave Vieregg on TRIPLE PLAY.

The J/80s saw a closely fought series for first place with Matt Hurlimann on FIREBOLT finally taking the gun in the last race to take the overall lead and win by one point.  Second was J/WORLD II sailed by the local J-boys.  And third was  J/WORLD I also sailed by local sailors.

Over at California Yacht Club, they hosted a competitive J/80 fleet, too.  In their event, it was Kurt Johnson's AVET from Cal YC that simply dominated the event with straight bullets!  Second was Scott Witt on BLUE J with straight 2nds!  And, third was Dave Angers' MISS DEMEANOR with nearly straight 3rds!   Sailing photo credits- Marnie Buddo  and Bronny Daniels/  For more SCYA Midwinters sailing information

J/111 Flies in Capetown Mid-Summer Fling!
(Capetown, South Africa)- While those north of the Equator are still fighting old Mother Winter, the intrepid sailors of Capetown are having a ball sailing in balmy breezes and slightly "cool" waters-- the stuff Great White Sharks love to swim in chasing yummy brown seals!  Yikes!  Even though the infamous Shark Island is just offshore with various Great Whites leaping 10-15 ft into the air while vying for their "aerial shark world chumping-ship", the sailors are blissfully ignorant about it and go their separate ways, planing down massively long slopes of fast-moving South Atlantic storm swells at a zillion miles per hour!

Having great fun in the Royal Cape YC's Mid-Summer Fling Regatta was the new J/111 TENACITY sailed by Erol Stern and Rob Meek.  With their magnificent "purple people eater" asymmetric spinnaker straining hard at the end of its dyneema "leash", the TENACITY gang certainly had their fair share of full-on screaming planes down the huge swells in the high teens!  In the end, their team managed to pull off a third overall in IRC Division I!  A bit off the pace but having just as much fun was the J/105 PANTS ON FIRE sailed by Dwayne Assis and Paul Thompson, managed a third in the final and extremely windy last race-- gusts over 30 kts!!

In Division I Racing, the J/27 HILl BILLY sailed by Peter Hill sailed well to finish 6th in their grouping, loving in particular the last heavy air day.  In Division II, the J/22 ESCAPE RACING TEAM sailed by Rob Tanner also enjoyed their racing over the course of the series.

If you're ever down in the South African region, be sure to stop by the Royal Cape YC in the shadows of the enchanting Table Mountain.  The Club hosts important sailing events including South Africa's premier keelboat regattas. The Cape to Rio and South Atlantic Races have been hosted by Royal Cape Yacht Club since inception in 1971. Other international events have included the Whitbread Race, the BT Global Challenge, The BOC Around Alone Race, the Volvo Ocean Race and the Hong Kong Challenge, to name but a few. Down the centuries, the Southern tip of the African continent, has extended a welcome to seafarers, gaining for the city and the RCYC the soubriquet- "The Tavern of the Seas"!!  Sailing Photo Credits- Onne    For more Capetown Mid-Summer Fling sailing information

J/Teams Loving SoCal Sunshine in Del Rey YC Berger Series
(Marina del Rey, CA)- As one of the first racing series of the Southern California midwinter sailing events, the Del Rey Yacht Club in Marina del Rey starts off the New Year  with their Berger Series for PHRF racing in SoCal.  It is a five-race event and is the premier distance, day-time series in Marina del Rey, culminating with a race to their Catalina Island Harbor facility and returning to Marina del Rey (yes, that beautiful, massive 10,000+ boat marina just north of LAX airport.

So far, several J/Teams are loving the sunshine and moderate breezes (if not a bit light) and are leading their divisions.  In PHRF B, theJ/80 AVET sailed by Curt Johnson from Cal YC won the first race.  Third is the J/70 DFZ sailed by the team of Kownacki & Jenkins, also from Cal YC.  Fourth is the J/109 SPRAY skippered by Peter Nelson and just behind him in 6th is Alice Leahey's J/109 GRACE O'MALLEY.

In PHRC C, Jim Bauerley's J/24 CRITTER is leading followed in third, appropriately enough, is the J/24 TRIPLE sailed by Lars Radmall and in 6th is the J/30 EGGEMOGGIN led by Kris Helm.

The PHRF A divisions sees three J's all in a row together in the top ten with the J/125 TIMESHAVER sailed by Viggo Torbenson in 8th, followed by the J/111 JATO skippered by the Webster & Moorehead team in 9th and Joe Simpkin's J/124 FORGIVENESS in 10th.

The next two events are the Santa Monica Bay Race- Saturday, March 2nd and then the finale, the Pt Dume Race- Saturday, May 4th.  For more Del Rey YC Berger Series sailing information

J/105 REPEAT OFFENDER Wins Hot Rum Class B
J/24 BULLET Wins Class C
(Santa Barbara, CA)- Every year, the Santa Barbara YC hosts the first of their two really fun regattas of the year, the Hot Rum Series (the latter being the Fiesta Cup Regatta that serves as the pre-feeder event for the Santa Barbara to King Harbor Race.  Taking after their friends down in San Diego that may have pioneered the "hot rum" pursuit series concept, the event is composed of three individual pursuit-styled races scheduled to be held one each on January 12th, January 26th, and February 9th.  Pursuit-style races can be a lot of fun as the slowest boats start first and the fastest last, making for quite a spectacle as all the faster boats give chase and often past the slower boats in front (thought not always!).

This year's Hot Rum Series saw lots of action with a steady 20+ knots in the final race on what many saw as a "classic Santa Barbara" day.  Starting off with a light fog that burns off by noon and with a rapidly building offshore breeze howling out of the NNW creating 20-30 kts at the offshore Santa Barbara sea-buoy in the western parts of the Channel.

On the last day, Larry Harteck's J/105 REPEAT OFFENDER literally won the race by a nose over the J/24 Bullet, but it was not enough for the J/105 to take over the J/24 in the overall standings.  So, BULLET takes the "Top Dog" award for the J/Teams!  Overall, in fact, the J/Teams did well with the J/24 BULLET taking 5th overall and 1st in Class C, the J/105 REPEAT OFFENDER taking 6th overall and 1st in Class B, the J/145 RADIO FLYER taking 7th overall and 4th in class A, the J/105 ESCAPADE taking 8th overall and 2nd in class B and, finally, the J/22 BLUES CREWS taking 10th overall and plummeting to 9th in Class B (due to their disasters 18th in the last race).   For more Santa Barbara YC Hot Rum Series sailing information


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

* J/70 TORQEEDO RACING is a family affair!  Yes, indeed it is and they have a really fun time doing it, too, as evidenced by the wonderful time they had at the Sperry Topsider St Petersburg NOOD Regatta this past weekend!  Torqeedo's J/70 sailing team fielded the two youngest crew members in the regatta.  During the racing, Atlantic Marketing's Brandon Flack steered the boat with his wife, their 10-year-old daughter and 7-year-old son. However, we have evidence that shows on Friday's light air racing, that "little Flack" took over the helm from his Dad and commandeered the ship!  "Avast ye mateys, man the oars and let us sally forth into the great unknown", someone overhead from nearby as the little guy took over--- oh dear, weren't they supposed to use those white sails?

"The J/70 was built to be an easy-to-own, high performance one-design that is exciting to sail and stable enough for the family," said Flack. "Adding a Torqeedo Travel 1003 electric motor makes perfect sense. It requires no maintenance and eliminates any concerns about gas storage or leakage. I'm thrilled to be able to demonstrate this concept with my own family."

And so, it was!  For Friday afternoon as well as on Saturday morning, you could see the great Viking ship TORQEEDO powering away on its mighty mite Torqeedo motor towing other boats and cruising merrily along without making a sound-- quite eerie, really, when all you hear around you was the "weed wacker motors" of the 2-cylinder outboard variety buzzing along next to you.

According to Brandon, "the Travel 1003 can push the 22.7' sailboat along at 6 knots. When cruising at 5 knots, it provides an 8-mile range on a single battery charge. Comparable to 3 hp and weighing only 31 lbs, the Travel 1003 is great for dinghies, tenders, Jon boats, fishing boats and sailboats up to 3,000 lbs. It can be rigged for remote throttle, too!"  For more info on these electric engines, check out:

* J/160 AVATAR headed for the Caribbean, again!  We LOVE these updates from our cruising J sailors that continue to criss-cross the Seven Seas. This one comes from Alan Fougere, sailing his beloved J/160 AVATAR.

J/160 sailing offshore to US Virgin Islands- rainbow over oceanAlan sent us an email update commenting on their passage south this winter, "In mid-December AVATAR completed her sixth transit to her winter Caribbean home, Grand Cruz Bay, St. John, USVI (seen above)  from her home port in Quissett (Falmouth), MA.  A crew of three, Captain Alan (e.g. me), Crew Pablo Brissett and Mark Conroy, covered the 1,500 nm trip in in her best time to date- 7 Days 5 Hours, averaging 8.7 kts, that's about 208 nm per day!  Amazing passage it was!  Rainbow at right far offshore was some of the amazing phenomenon we experienced on this fast offshore passage.

AVATAR will participate in the BVI Sailing Festival/Regatta again in 2013, where last year she won the Nanny Key Cup Cruising Class race around the Island of Virgin Gorda.  Here are some photos for you to share with the J/Community at-large.  Enjoy!"
Best, Alan Fougere/ AVATAR

Bill & Judy Stellin- sailing J/42 Jaywalker* Bill & Judy Stellin recently had an interview about cruising on their J/42 in the Wall St Journal called "Retiring on the Open Sea".  The Wall St Journal asked Bill to reply to dozens of questions that flooded into the WSJ's Editor desks. Here's the update:

Retiring on the Sea: Answering Readers' Questions
Advice about selecting a boat, ocean crossings, itineraries and safety

Wall St Journal interview- Stellin's Offshore cruising/ sailing retirementThe article in our WSJ Online December retirement report about eight years spent sailing the Mediterranean— "Retiring to the Open Sea"— prompted many questions and comments from readers.  We asked William Stellin, who wrote the story, to answer some of the most common queries.

WSJ- "What kind and make of boat did you use? Looking back, would you have picked a different boat?"

Bill- "In 1995-96, J/Boats of Newport, RI, came out with a new cruiser/racer model, the J/42. We bought hull No. 6 of this popular 42-foot sailboat and named it JAYWALKER. This was our fourth boat since beginning sailing in 1975.

Although long-distance cruising wasn't what we had in mind when we purchased JAYWALKER, it soon became apparent it had the ability to carry us easily and safely anywhere we wanted to go. Because the boat is light, it sails well in light winds, which means very little motoring is necessary.

People often ask (and argue) about what boat is best for cruising. Any boat that is strong, safe, fast, comfortable and easily handled by two people should fit the bill. One thing for sure, fast is fun—and important when trying to avoid bad weather."


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:

* 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

J/130 sailing ARC Rally arrives Portugal- leave a message on the sea wall!* 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-