Wednesday, November 27, 2013

J/Newsletter- November 27th, 2013

J/109 cruiser racer sailboat
Dusseldorf Show Charity Raffle for J/109!
(Dusseldorf, Germany)- This year’s 2014 Dusseldorf Boat Show (running from 18th to 26th January) hopes to bring a lot of happiness to many children that are lovingly taken care of in the “sunshine4kids” charity. The winners of the charity raffle are (i) the proud new owner of a J/109 cruiser-racer and (ii) the “sunshine4kids” charity receiving a donation of 50,000 EUROs!  For those sailors who love to help friends and family and those in need, this partnership between the show, the J/Dealer in Germany- Mittelsman’s Werft- and others promises to bring a lot of smiles and warm hearts to the children and young people in need from all over Germany.  Visit Mittelsman’s Werft booth in Hall 14 (Hall 14/ Stand 14/ B 04) to enter the raffle, see the J/Boats on display and to see the “live” drawing at the end of the show!

The show in Dusseldorf has committed for several years to the “sunshine4kids” charity. Werner Matthias Dornscheidt, Chairman and CEO of Messe Dusseldorf, has personally taken over the patronage of the "Hope Fleet 2014" to help support distressed children and young people from all over Germany. "I am sure our visitors will be happy to participate in this great raffle for charity and I hope that we end up with two lucky winners and can give sunshine4kids a very nice donation," said Mr Dornscheidt.

sunshine4kids sailing charity germany“sunshine4kids” is aimed at supporting children and young people who are suffering from cancer, have lost a parent, or are living in family with a terminally ill sibling. The organization provides free sailing activities, projects and other events to help grow their zest for life and give them new perspectives of the world. Gaby Schaefer, Chairman and Founder of sunshine4kids, is pleased about the commitment of the  Dusseldorf show, Mittelsman’s Werft contribution of the J/109 and the other companies involved, because "without economic support and without our volunteer skipper and care-givers, even the most meaningful projects simply cannot be realized— we’re very grateful for their contributions!”

"We hope to see many J/sailors and J/Boat owners from across Germany and Europe", said Henning Mittelsman, the Managing Director of Mittelsman’s Werft in Germany.  Mr Mittelsman mentioned that he hopes everyone who stops by makes a small contribution to the project and, most importantly, learns more about how to help the “sunshine4kids” program, commenting that “every helping hand is of great value to the children and we hope we might even get some volunteers to take the children sailing!”  For more J/109 sailboat information.    For more boat show information and the “sunshine4kids” foundation charity:

J/111 sailing North Americans off ChicagoJ/111 Worlds & European Circuit Announcement!
(Cowes, IOW, England)- The European J/111 circuit is shaping up to be an exciting season for 111 sailors from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean and from Italy to Ireland!  There are events taking place on the Mediterranean as well as in “classic” sailing ports along the North Sea and the Channel, all leading up to the first J/111 World Championships to take place in the famous waters of the Solent and hosted by the Royal Yacht Squadron off Cowes, England from August 20th to 24th!

J/111 European and World circuitTeams from Northern Europe as well as the Mediterranean can look forward to early season warm-up regattas that include Vice Admirals Cup, North Sea Regatta, Normandy Week and Giraglia Rolex Cup prior to the J/111 Europeans being hosted in 2014 in conjunction with the massively popular Cowes Week event in early August.  The Europeans will serve as a “Pre-Worlds” for the 111 teams participating in J/111 Worlds two weeks later.  Below is the schedule for the major J/111 events in the 2014 J/111 European Circuit:
  • May 9-12- Vice Admirals Cup- Cowes, England
  • Jun 6-9- North Sea Regatta- The Hague, Netherlands
  • Jun 9—15- Normandy Week- Le Havre, France
  • Jun 14-22- Giraglia Rolex Cup- St Tropez, France & San Remo, Italy
  • Aug 2-5- J/111 European Championships- Cowes, England
  • Aug 20-24- J/111 World Championships- Royal Yacht Squadron- Cowes, England
  • September- Benelux J/111 Regatta- Breskens, Netherlands
  • October- Tour de Corse- Bonifacio, Italy
For more J/111 Class sailing information, charter boat information, please contact J/Composites ( or J/Boats- ph# 401-846-8410.

J/70 one-design speedster sailing in GermanyJ/70 Worlds, Europeans & NA’s Announcement!
(London, England)- 2013 has been a remarkable year. The first full season of J/70 class racing runs like a highlight reel - starting with the huge fleet at Key West for the first J/70 Midwinters, 50+ boats at Charleston, numerous regional events around the globe, and the 89 boat North American Championship held two months ago in Annapolis. Not since the J/24 has there been such rapid market acceptance and endorsement of a new design. And just when we thought the news couldn’t get better, 2014 promises even bigger and better things to come for J/70 sailors worldwide.

2014 J/70 Worlds Newport
After being approved as the International J/70 Class recently by ISAF in their Oman Meetings, the J/70 class will be looking forward to their inaugural World Championships in Newport, RI hosted by the New York Yacht Club, in partnership with Sail Newport at Fort Adams from September 8th to 13th, 2014.  The 2014 J/70 Worlds will be one of the hottest one-design tickets around. Hot enough in fact that it will be a qualified entry event with a cap of 120 boats. Upcoming J/70 winter events such as Key West, Davis Island Winter Series, St. Petersburg/San Diego NOODs and Bacardi Cup, plus most of the regional events throughout the season, will have qualifier slots (both Open and Corinthian) for the 2014 Worlds. The J/70 Class plans to announce the specifics of the qualifier program early next month. If you know of a regional J/70 event that is not already on the class calendar and should be considered as a world’s qualifier, please contact Chris Howell- email-

J/70 European and World Circuit2014 J/70 European Circuit
Rapid fleet growth is already taking place in Europe with fleets forming in Sweden/ Denmark, Netherlands/ Benelux, Germany (Lake Constance), Monaco, Italy, France and Great Britain/ Ireland.  As a result of the tremendous enthusiasm and the desire for many teams to travel to events with their fun, fast trailerable speedster, there will be a six event European J/70 Circuit that culminates in the de-facto J/70 European Championship on Lake Garda, Italy.  The events include the following dates:
  • Feb 7-9- Primo Cup- Trophee Credit Suisse- Monte Carlo, Monaco
  • Apr 18-21- SPI Ouest France- La Trinite sur Mer, France
  • Jun 6-9- North Sea Regatta- The Hague, Netherlands
  • Jun 21-29- Kiel Week- Kiel, Germany
  • Aug 2-5- Cowes Race Week- Cowes, Isle of Wight, England
  • Mid-Sept- J/70 EuroCup/ Europeans- Lake Garda, Italy
2014 J/70 North Americans Rochester
While a ticket to the Worlds might take a few regattas to qualify for, the 2014 North American Championship in Rochester, New York is OPEN to all comers! Slated for July 14-20, this event promises to be huge. Rochester Yacht Club is ready to roll out the red carpet to J/70 owners and their families. Timed ideally at nearly two months before the worlds, J/70 owners around the world have a great excuse to bring their boats to the northeast USA and enjoy what promises to be an epic J/70 summer!

The 2014 J70 Calendar is shaping up to be huge!  By the first of the New Year there will have been 500 J/70s produced. There are other regional circuits developing that will be announced soon that include Pacific Coast, Great Lakes, Southwest, Mid-Atlantic and New England.  Please be sure to check frequently at the J/70 Class website for any updates.   For more J/70 Class regatta information   For more International J/70 One-Design sailing information

J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

As November comes to a close, it’s remarkable to see that North America and Europe have already seen their first blast of winter but the action on the water still remains HOT & fast!  In fact, much the same can be said for sailing taking place in the Southern hemispheres amongst those enjoying late spring, early summer sailing regattas!

It was a busy week for J/24s in Central and South America.  The Mexican J/24 class enjoyed another fun regatta on their schedule, hosted by Club de Vela la Peña as part of their “regatta de la revolucion” series.  Further south, the Argentinean J/24 class in Buenos Aires played host to the J/24 South American Championships at C.U.B.A. (Club Universidad de Buenos Aires) sailing club, sailing on the Rio de la Plata.

In the Caribbean, the first of many international regattas have started off their winter season with the St Croix YC hosting the incredibly fun St Croix International Regatta off Christiansted and their lovely beachside location.  A fleet consisting of a J/100, J/105, J/24s, J/27, J/80, and J/36 had a scream flying around their spectacular turquoise waters.

The sailors in the United Kingdom were treated to good sailing for the penultimate weekend of their fall sailing series known as the Garmin Hamble Winter Series.  The J/111s and J/109s enjoyed tight one-design sailing and the J/105s, J/92s and J/97s were all in top five rankings (if not outright winning) going into their final weekend of sailing.

In the middle of the Atlantic, the inaugural J/105 Bermuda XL Invitational was hosted by that famous sanctuary offshore known to most sailors as the Royal Bermuda YC.  Eight teams from Canada, USA, Bermuda and Great Britain competed for both “International” skipper honors as well as “Bermuda” local skipper honors in a fun, challenging format in a ten race series!  Needless to say, the sailors were blessed with amazing, gorgeous Bermuda sailing conditions on the Great Sound.

Finally, in the Americas, the SoCal contingent of sailors were having another go at each other in their famous pursuit-style racing series, the San Diego Hot Rum Series hosted by San Diego YC.

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:

Dec 6-7- Jamaica Jammin' J/22 Regatta- Montego Bay, Jamaica
Jan 19-24- 2014 Key West Race Week- Key West, FL

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

J/88 one-design offshore speedster sailing on Solent- Hamble winter seriesHamble Winter Series- Weekend VII
(Hamble, England)-  The penultimate weekend of the Garmin Hamble Winter Series saw a chilly and gusty breeze that shifted regularly between 002 and 022 degrees, demanding frequent tacks and rewarding tacticians with their heads out of the boat. Despite only reaching 18 knots, the wind was gusty enough to keep trimmers on their toes.

In some classes, boats that have been dominant throughout the series consolidated their overall lead, despite not topping the fleet in Sunday’s race.  In IRC 0, David & Kirsty Apthorp’s J/111 J-DREAM continued to sail a consistent series in their class and maintained their strong record with a 3rd this past weekend to hold on to their bronze podium position as well as their gold position in the J/111 one-design class overall.

In IRC 2, Paul Heys’s J/88 JUNGLE DRUM continues their series with a solid performance and Louise Makin’s J/105 JOURNEYMAKER 5 is holding onto fifth overall— a great finish for an older classic J design.

Nick Munday’s J/97 INDULJENCE is still leading their series with a 2nd to take IRC 3 Class with a commanding lead overall.  Just behind them chasing INDULJENCE the entire series has been David Greenhalgh’s J/92 J-RONIMO, taking a well-earned 1st in the last race and nailing down second overall for the series to date!

J/111 one-design offshore cruiser racer- sailing on Solent- Hamble winter seriesThe J/109s always have a go of it and this year is no different.  Nevertheless, starting out strongly and not to be thwarted on their form was David McGough’s JUST SO, rolling off four 1sts on their way to a strong and well-deserved class lead.  The same could not be said for the balance of the podium.  It is a donnybrook for silver and bronze and Paul Griffith’s JAGERBOMB won the latest race of the series but it’s not enough to topple their erstwhile classmates, Owain Franks JYNNAN TONNYX.  At the moment, the TONNYX boys have the silver with 15 pts net with JAGERBOMB a whisker behind with 16 pts net.  Fourth is David McLeman’s OFFBEAT and fifth is Ivan Burden’s JACOBI.  Time will tell how this fleet goes topsy-turvy going into the final weekend!

Finally, David & Kirsty Apthorp’s J-DREAM are leading the J/111 class, ahead of Andrew Christie’s ICARUS in second and Cornel Riklin’s JITTERBUG in third.

Prizes were generously provided by Driver’s Dry Berthing at a prize-giving back in the Hamble River Sailing Club club house. See you next week on the water for one more race! Thanks for the contributions from Ben Meakins.  For sailing photo credits-  Paul Wyeth Pictures   For more Hamble Winter Series sailing information

J/24 one-design racing sailboats- sailing off Buenos AiresPereira Dominates J/24 South Americans
(Buenos Aires, Argentina)-  This year’s J/24 South Americans had a highly competitive turnout of twenty-four teams from across the continent, including Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Uruguay.  The high level of competition generated electrifying combat on the muddy waters of the Rio de la Plata in simply fantastic sailing conditions over the four day event.  Perhaps most importantly, the Club Universitario de Buenos Aires were simply amazing hosts, looking after the needs of all the sailors both on-the-water and ashore with some amazing post-race social entertainment.

Despite having to take a SCP scoring penalty in the first race, Matias Pereira and crew sailed a masterful regatta aboard their renowned CARRERA, counting four firsts in their nine race scorecard to win by ten points.  Pereira’s crew included Juan Ignacio Pereira, Guillermo Bellinoto, Federico Roberto, and Bellinoto Ambrus.

The first day of racing had ideal conditions for sailing, with a mild northeaster to start the day with the wind veering into the SSE by late afternoon.  With plenty of sunshine and relatively flat waters, the RC’s PRO did a great job to keep the aggressive fleet under control and run three of the nine races scheduled for the regatta.

J/24 one-design sailboat- sailing off Buenos Aires, ArgentinaThe first race was an all Argentine affair in the shifty northeasterly, with Sergio Pendola on CACIQUE taking the gun followed by current Argentinean Champion Matias Pereira on CARRERA and Alexander Rossi on TOMMY HILFIGER.  The next race saw more wind coming out of the east and getting shiftier and streakier.  Pereira won quite handily followed by the Uruguayan team of EXTASIS skippered by Pedro Garra and another Argentine team sailed by Nicolas Cubria on RINA.  By the last race, the wind had increased to nearly 20 kts from the SSE with some teams changing over to jibs.  In the end, the Chilean team on VOLVO sailed by Matias Seguel won handily followed by Cubria’s RINA and Garra’s EXTASIS.

The second day of racing was going to be a challenge for both competitors and the CUBA RC.  Starting out quite strong from the northeast, but rapidly dying, the winds went very light with a strong current on the river.  As a result, the PRO wisely took the fleet in close to YC Argentino’s harbor entrance to get some benefits of a building sea-breeze condition, enough to get some races going for the day.  In the first race of the day, Ezequiel Despontin’s INDIGO took the gun followed by CARRERA and Robert Vernon’s JOYITA.  After completing the first race, the RC’s PRO again had to postpone to let the breeze settle in at around 5-7 kts.  The second race of the day saw CARRERA win followed by INDIGO and EXTASIS.  At this point with five races counting, CARRERA had a substantial lead with just 9 pts, with EXTASIS in second with 14 pts and VOLVO in third with 18 pts.

J/24s sailing on Rio de la Plata- Buenos Aires, ArgentinaThe last day dawned with yet more challenging weather conditions, with the lack of wind forcing an hour postponement.  Nevertheless, the wind quickly built to 8-12 kts from the ESE, enabling the RC to quickly fire off four races for the happy crews!  In fact, by the end of the day, the SE breeze had built to over 18 kts TWS and most of the crews changed from genoas to jibs and back again during the race!  Sailing fast and furious was CARRERA, scoring a 3-BFD-1-1 to win the regatta by ten points (dropping the BFD race).

Behind Pereira’s team was the Chilean team on JOYITA sailed by Robert Vernon, followed by fellow countrymen on VOLVO skippered by Matias Seguel.  This was the best showing of these two Chilean teams at the South Americans in recent years; a measure of how far they’ve improved on the international level of J/24 competition!  Rounding out the top five were the Uruguayan team on EXTASIS with skipper Pedro Garra taking fourth and behind them were Argentinean Nicolas Cubria on RINA in fifth.

There was some great social media and YouTube sailing videos of the event, please see some of these links below:
For more J/24 South American Championship sailing information

J/105 Team Elusive- sailing Bermuda winnersTeam Elusive Bermuda J/105 Invitational Champions
(Hamilton, Bermuda)- The Bermuda J/105 Class and Royal Bermuda YC hosted the inaugural Bermuda J/105 Invitational Regatta, sponsored by XL Group, from November 21st to 23rd on the gorgeous aquamarine waters of The Great Sound. Eight international teams could not have been treated to better, more idyllic sailing conditions, nor a better venue for excellent one-design racing on Bermuda’s fabled waters.  Sailors from the USA, Canada, UK, and Bermuda competed  for the XL Trophy [Overall Series]; the Bermuda Tourism Trophy [International Series]; and the Goslings Trophy [Bermuda Series].

The regatta featured a unique “team” format- each boat was made up of 3 international sailors and 3 Bermuda sailors who sailed together in each race. Races were be designated as “Bermuda” or “International”; the respective nominated helmsman helmed for that race.  This was the first time the format had been used.

One of the Island’s top Race Officers, Royal Bermuda YC’s Charles Tatem, ran a fabulous regatta all three days, blessed as the fleet was with strong northerlies on Thursday and Friday and a rapidly building southwester on Saturday feeding a massive low pressure system rolling in across the Atlantic.

J/105 team Yabsta- with Neff family sailing- Stew, Mike, TerryThe first day of sailing got underway on Thursday in blustery conditions, with northeast winds of 15-25 knots churning up the Great Sound. The mixed crews from Bermuda and International Yacht Clubs kicked off the day with a practice race to help with the crew work, and then Race 1 got underway. International skippers helm the odd numbered races, and local skippers the even numbered ones.

The opening win went to ELUSIVE (Steve Cucchiaro from Eastern YC) chased by PASSION (Bill Lackenmacher from Lakewood YC) and SADIIQI (Sean McDermott from Royal Nova Scotia YS). Race 2 had a crew overboard at one of the marks – recovered fine, but damp – and Yabsta lost their second spinnaker in the strong breeze.

The opening “locals” race went to ELUSIVE (Chuck Millican from Bermuda’s Royal Hamilton Dinghy Club), chased by PASSION (Jim Macdonald from host RBYC) and YABSTA (Trevor Boyce from Royal Hamilton Dinghy Club). Race 3, in slightly lighter conditions, was taken by PASSION followed by YABSTA (Stewart Neff from Eastern YC) and MAYHEM (Jason Owen from Royal Ocean Racing Club in England). The final race of the day, back in a 20 knot breeze, had ELUSIVE’s third bullet of the day, with PASSION next and SADIIQI in third.

The “Sovereign Jewellers” boat of the day, on seven points, was ELUSIVE, also leading the Overall [XL Trophy] and Bermuda [Goslings Trophy] competitions. PASSION was leading the International competition [The Bermuda Tourism Trophy].

The second day of competition got underway in glorious sailing conditions – medium breeze and clear skies. The crews had recovered from a bruising first day and race 5 of the 10 race series started at 11am in the Great Sound.

The day’s first win went to SADIIQI, chased by PASSION and BACK-IN-BLACK (Greg Turman from Corpus Christi YC). Race 6, in slightly lighter conditions, was taken by ELUSIVE to notch their 4th bullet in the regatta already followed by PASSION and MAYHEM.

J/105s sailing off start at Bermuda InvitationalRace 7 saw the breeze shift to the left and start to drop out – racing then became an exercise in finding pressure and playing the substantial lifts along the Somerset Shore, or out toward Pearl Island. Race 7 was won by PASSION followed by ELUSIVE and BACK-IN-BLACK (Ed Fries from Royal Hamilton Dinghy Club). The final race of the day, was a challenging tactical contest in the light winds. ELUSIVE played the shifts well both upwind and downwind to win by nearly a half-leg!  In a distant second was SADIIQI passing PASSION in the final run to the finish to take 2nd and 3rd, respectively.

The “Tops Limited” boat of the day, on 8 points, was PASSION [2-2-1-3]. After 8 of the 10 races, PASSION was leading the Overall [XL Trophy] with 15 points over ELUSIVE’s 17, followed by SADIIQI and MAYHEM both on 33 points.  With only two races left, the stage was set for a battle royal between the top two boats to determine the overall winner; especially since neither boat could finish “out of the chocolates” with just 8 boats racing!

The final day of sailing got underway shortly after the breeze filled in. With the regatta on the line, the ELUSIVE team match-raced PASSION to gain a slight advantage on the first start and after a brief tacking duel, both boats split tacks with ELUSIVE rounding the first windward mark in 2nd with PASSION in the middle of the pack.  In the end, ELUSIVE held her position, with BACK-IN-BLACK taking first and YABSTA taking third.  At this point, ELUSIVE was leading by a single point over PASSION for the overall title.

Team Passion from Lakewood YC Texas at Bermuda InvitationalWith a strongly increasing breeze in the mid-teens from the southwest, the final duel was set for the top two teams.  To add to the drama, Race 10 started under the “black flag rule” for a triple windward-leeward race— a veritable marathon for the sailors.  Again, ELUSIVE pursued PASSION in the last minute of the start to match-race them down into the pack.  After a brief tacking duel, again, both boats split tacks with ELUSIVE again managing to round several boats ahead.  By the second downwind leg, ELUSIVE sailed fast enough to slide into 2nd place and maintained that position to the finish to take the overall win.

The event concluded with a long distance race back to Hamilton Harbour, taking in the Small Sound and the channel up to The Dockyards in front of the spectacular Commissioner’s House on the northern part of Ireland Island. MAYHEM took line honours and won the “Bermuda Project Managers” prize. The “Tops Limited” boat of the day was BACK—IN-BLACK.

The Overall XL Trophy went to the strong ELUSIVE team, followed by PASSION and MAYHEM.  Fourth was SADIIQI and fifth was BACK-IN-BLACK.  The top International helmsmen taking Bermuda Tourism Trophy was Bill Lackenmacher from Houston, TX, followed by Steve Cucchiaro from Boston, MA, and Greg Turman from Corpus Christi, TX.  The top local helmsmen for the Goslings Trophy was Chuck Millican followed by James Macdonald and Jon Corless.   For more J/105 Bermuda XL Invitational sailing information

J/27 sailing St Croix regattaJ/Teams Lovin’ St Croix Regatta!
DARK STAR, PALADIN, EL SHADDAI-- Stars in Caribbean Sailing
(Christiansted, St Croix, USVI)- For starters, what’s not to like about the basic premise of St Croix’s International Regatta hosted by the St Croix YC on their famous beach?  For one, the winning skipper’s weight in rum is first overall prize; secondly, there are three spectacular days of racing in classic Caribbean sailing conditions; and lastly, there are  live bands each night on the beach with awesome “island-style” hospitality!

J/100 sailing upwind at St Croix regattaThe history of the event is somewhat amusing because of it’s unusual first prize! In 1992, Commodore Nick Castruccio organized the first St.Croix Yacht Club International Regatta, he convinced Mumm’s Champagne to sponsor the event, and encouraged his sailing friends from across the Caribbean to compete. The three day event was held in October, on the weekend of Columbus Day/ Puerto Rico Friendship Day, and 69 boats attended the first year. Peter Holmberg of Team Heineken, winner of the racing spinnaker class, received his weight in Mumm’s Champagne (and being a somewhat large citizen that he is, Mumm’s was not sure if this was such a great idea!). Nevertheless, a tradition was born!

After a series of hurricanes in the 1990s, resulting in the loss of the main Yacht Club dock three times, the event was moved to February, allowing StCYC to replace the dock after hurricane season. Better weather and better planning on the Yacht Club’s part have resulted in dock retention since. In 1999, Mumm’s (not too surprisingly) withdrew as the event sponsor and was replaced by local companies that sponsored the event through 2007. The winning skipper now received his weight in Cruzan Rum, thanks to the local St Croix distillery. And so it is.

J/80 one-design sailboat- sailing off St Croiz, USVIThe event is somewhat unique from a regatta format as well since there is a “pre-regatta” called the Commodore’s Race Trophy.  This enables the locals, in particular, to get their acts together, work out some of the rust accumulated from the summer and get the teams “gelling” like a well-oiled machine— at least, that’s the challenge!  The first event produced some great racing with J/Teams pretty much dominating the entire regatta.

In CSA Racing, taking 1st was Jonathan Lipuscek’s J/105 DARK STAR.  In fact, J/Teams took four of the top six places.  Following them in 3rd was Paul Davis’s J/27 MAGNIFICENT 7, in 5th was Angela Mayala’s J/80 SUN BUM II and in 6th was Robert Armstrong’s somewhat infamous J/100 BAD GIRL.

The CSA Non-Spinnaker also saw very spirited racing with the winner being Stanford Joines’s J/36 PALADIN looking magnificent.  Third was Dave Tomlinson’s J/24 EL SHADDAI.

Now that most teams had a bit of practice under their belts, it was high time to up the ante and put on the full-court press to determine the podium finishers for the “big one”, the St Croix International Regatta trophies and, of course, the skipper’s weight in rum for winning their respective divisions.

The CSA Racing saw a very closely fought competition, but getting the short-end of the stick on a tie-breaker and having to settle for second (and no rum) was Jonathan Lipuscek’s J/105 DARK STAR.  Ouch!  That must’ve been a bummer.  Also sailing a lot faster and smarter was and taking third on the podium was Robert Armstrong’s J/100 BAD GIRL.

Flip-flopping positions from the first regatta, the CSA Non-Spinnaker winner this time around (and quite happy to weigh-in on the rum award!) was Dave Tomlinson’s J/24 EL SHADDAI. Stanford Joines’s J/36 PALADIN sailed a solid regatta but simply could not hold back the rum-thirsty boys on EL SHADDAI!!  Amazing motivation that is!   Sailing photo credits- Rob Jones   For more St Croix International Regatta sailing information

J/125 sailing San Diego Hot Rum seriesJ/Teams HOT In SD Rum Series
(San Diego, CA)- San Diego's favorite Fall racing series is in full swing! For three Saturday’s (November 9th, 23rd and December 7th), the San Diego Yacht Club plays host to the annual Hot Rum Series— a fun-loving “free-for-all” that generally sees the fleet starting inside of San Diego Harbor, takes them on a “tour” that heads out past the majestic Point Loma, around some buoy set offshore, then “back home to the barn” to again finish inside the channel just off Harbor Island. J/120s sailing in San Diego Hot Rum series It’s an annual ritual for many SoCal sailors and, for most, it’s pretty random how one finishes based on how the wind blows (or not!).  For those not “in-the-know”, it’s consistently one of the largest PHRF “pursuit-style” races run annually— with the little boats (like 21 footers) starting first and the big boats (e.g. over 70 foot ULDB sleds) starting last; whomever crosses first wins!  To say that it’s a blast and lots of fun dJ/24 sailingn over Stars & Stripesoesn’t adequately describe the experience of having the likes of famous local boy Dennis Conner come flying by you on his custom 60 foot sloop, appropriately called STARS & STRIPES (like this ->>)!

Many J/Teams participate in this festival of sailing, more fun than being an actual race.  In PHRF Class 1, four J/125s are sailing and leading that pack after two weekends is Jim Madden’s STARK RAVING MAD.  He’s followed by Mark Surber’s DERIVATIVE, Viggo Torbenson’s TIMESHAVER and Tim Fuller’s RESOLUTE.

PHRF Class 2 has a flotilla of J/120s and a gorgeous J/124.  At this stage, top dog in the J/Fleet is Mike Hatch’s J/120 J/ALMIGHTY followed by Seth Hall’s J/124 MARISOL.  The J/120s CAPER (John Laun) and CC RIDER (Chuck Nichols) are just behind them.

J/105 BLINK sailed by Steve Howell from San Diego- sailing Hot Rum seriesThe J/105s are usually so dominant in PHRF Class 3 that most years they occupy the entire top five.  However, at this stage the J/105s are taking up just 5 of the top 10 slots.  Top boat is Dennis Case’s WINGS, followed by Dag Fish’s VIGGEN, Steve & Lucy Howell’s BLINK! and Ed Sanford’s CREATIVE.

TJ/70 one-design speedster- sailing San Diego Hot Rum serieshe seven J/70s in PHRF Class 4 are knocking it out of the park so far!  First in class is Karl Pomeroy’s ZERO TO SIXTY followed in second place by Jeff Brown’s “J70 Team”.  Dave Vieregg is sitting 3rd in J/70s and fifth in class on SOGGY DOLLAR.

Amazingly, the classic J/24 CAROLINA sailed by Ben Nieting is winning class and a fellow J/24 sailor is lying sixth in class, Mark Clements’s BRIGADOON.  Dave Cattle’s J/27 BLACKADDER is ready to pounce in the next race from his seventh place spot in the standings!   Sailing photo credits-  Bronny Daniels/   For more San Diego YC Hot Rum sailing information

J/24s sailing in Mexico“S” Super In Copa TelCel
(Club de Vela la Peña, Mexico)- Taking place over the past weekend and celebrating “la revolucion” were a fleet of thirteen J/24s competing for “la Copa TelCel La Pena”.  The Club de Vela la Peña was an excellent host and conducted a marvelous regatta over the two day weekend event.  Both Saturday and Sunday saw remarkably steady winds of 8-12 kts, with gusts up to 14 kts.  As a result, the CVLP RC was able to run the full slate of five races, much to the delight of all the sailors!

The fleet was treated to a “superman-like” performance from Team “S”, led by their magnificent capitano, Kenneth Porter.  Taking four 1sts in five races meant they could count a DNC and still win the regatta!  A fantastic result for Porter and the boys, a sobering experience for the rest of the fleet!  Talk about providing a “sailing clinic” on how to win J/24 regattas!

J/24s sailing off MexicoFor the rest of the competitors, it was anything but easy.  The balance of the top five basically saw four boats quite literally tied for second place!  Everything was determined for this group on the last leg of the fifth and final race.  Emerging from the fog of war was Manuel Benitez sailing ZORRO into second place by taking 3rd in the last race.  The others were not so lucky.  Third to fifth just two points back was determined on a three-way tie-breaker at 25 pts each.  Taking the “lucky break” was Jorge Murrieta’s TRES DOLORES team to snag the bronze for the regatta.  Not as lucky were Ralph Nelles on SUPER MACHOS taking fourth and Luis Morales on ORION completing the top five with his fifth place overall.  In the end, it was great racing, very tight for this group and lots of fun at the the CVLP’s bar afterwards as endless stories of “shoulda-woulda-coulda” were discussed (e.g. argued) amongst the crews!  “Next time” was the operative modus operandi for the next regatta.  In fact, the next race is November 30th- the Festival of Sail at Club de Velas Santa Maria.   For more J/24 Mexico sailing information


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

Don Finkle & son sailing J/70s in New York and Key West*  Don Finkle from RCR Yachts had some good insights on J/70s, trailering and logistics for those who are considering doing more traveling to regattas.  Here are some of Don’s comments:

“One of the best attributes of the 70 is the ease of which you can tow it places.  I have towed our hull #15 over 10,000 miles so far and other than one one goof where I cut a corner too tight and knocked off a tail light it has been a piece of cake. 

The loaded 70 on trailer is low to the ground and you can board without a ladder by either stepping on the fender or on a dock box forward.  We recommend a simple plastic three-step stool that you can use to board on the transom.

We also installed a very inexpensive box we picked up at Lowe's which is handy for stowage of gear we don't want to keep inside the boat.

Because the boat is low, light and streamlined it tows much easier than most other boats.  The mast is deck stepped (shorter than if it was keel stepped) so it only sticks out a short way forward and aft of the hull.  The hinged mast step makes for easier step/unstep and you can ramp launch the boat yourself.  We highly recommend the “mast-stepping aid”, a simple device J/Boats designed that has a trailer “roller” mounted atop a six ft piece of 2”x 4” wood and fixed with a c-clamp onto the outboard bracket and lashed (bolted if you want) to the mast brace that spans the two transom pulpits— could not make hoisting the mast any easier!  Just put the top of the mast on it, roll it back, pin the mast-step, raise the mast!

The trailer-ability has allowed us to take our 70 to places such as Key West, Charleston, Newport, Annapolis (3 times), and so forth.  If you have not yet traveled with your 70 you are missing out on half the fun.  We’re looking forward to another full season of sailing!”

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.

J/42 cruiser- sailing across Atlantic Ocean* Jim & Heather Wilson just completed a circumnavigation of our "blue planet Earth" in June 2013 on their J/42 CEOL MOR.  Said Jim, "The odyssey of CEOL MOR is over, for now.  We completed our circumnavigation on our J/42 when we crossed our outbound track in Britannia Bay, Mustique. We were, however, still 2,000 nautical miles from home. So we continued on through the Windwards, the Leewards, and then through the British Virgin Islands. After a farewell 'Painkiller' at the Soggy Dollar, and a last meal at Foxy’s, we made the 1,275 nautical mile passage to the Chesapeake and completed our port-to-port circumnavigation when we arrived in Annapolis on June 28, 2013. We had been away 1,334 days, completed 259 days of ocean passages, and sailed 30,349 nautical miles (34,925 statute miles). Read more about their adventures in their  well-documented blog here:

J/160 sailing offshore to US Virgin Islands- rainbow over ocean* 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.   Alan 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/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).

-  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), 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.