Wednesday, August 27, 2014

J/Newsletter- August 27th, 2014

J/97e- the evolution of racing and cruisingJ/97e and J/122e Debut Southampton Boat Show
(Southampton, United Kingdom)- Key Yachting Ltd will be exhibiting four J/Boats at the Southampton Boat Show from 12th September, including two which will be making their show debut. Step aboard all of these boats on marina berths M350 – M354 and M340.

The J/97 Evolution – European Boat Show Debut!
The J/97 needs little introduction. In 2013, the J/97 won its IRC class at events including the UK IRC Nationals, Cowes Week, the South West IRC Nationals, Dartmouth Regatta, West Highland Week, Brighton Marina Yacht Cub Regatta and Abersoch Keelboat Week. A J/97 was also declared overall winner of the Scottish Series – three different J/97s have taken this title since 2011.

For 2014, the J/97 has had a mini-remodel and evolved to become the new J/97E, with the aim of broadening her appeal to both racers and cruisers.

The most significant alteration is in the deck layout where the traveller has been moved half a metre aft and is now on the cockpit sole. This move provides 50% more working cockpit space and with the primary winches also moving aft the crew have an increased operating space. A factory fit wheel is now available with a Jefa steering system combined with JP3 self-aligning bearings to give a beautifully light feel to the helm.

Notable enhancements to the interior include increased headroom in the aft cabin, making her even more comfortable for cruising.  The new J/111 window style profile and optional hull windows add to the feeling of light and space in the saloon along with her six-foot standing headroom.

The J/97 offers family cruising accommodation in a high performance, easily driven hull. With the handling ease of an asymmetric spinnaker and non-overlapping headsails, the J/97 fits the needs of today’s sailing families, of all ages.  Following a recent flurry of J/97 sales, the model recently secured its own one design class at the J-Cup with nine entries.

J/122e sailing upwindThe J/122 Evolution – Southampton Boat Show Debut!
New for 2014, the look of the J/122 has been transformed, with new coach roof windows in line with those on the J/88, along with the addition of hull windows, the first J/Boat to display this most welcome feature. Below decks the living space is rejuvenated, with the large galley and saloon finished in a combination of a satin finish light mahogany woodwork and white lacquered finish, with corian galley worktops.

The Famous J/70 Sportsboat
The J/70 is J/Boats’ first slipway-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 7m 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.

J/70 one-design sailboatWith its easily driven hull, large cockpit, and three sail inventory, the J/70 is perfect for three adults, two couples, or four juniors. Her long cockpit and moderate height boom allow easy crew movement across the cockpit while tacking and jibing. For sitting and hiking comfort, mid-height safety-lines run cockpit length, making the J/70 one of the most comfortable boats to steer and crew aboard. The small cabin below is a bonus providing weather protection and privacy when necessary. Safety lines around the cockpit, plus an interior with seats and an optional V-berth forepeak give that extra measure of security. Expensive marina berthing can be avoided with the J/70, which can be owner rigged and launched in no time.

Nearly 700 boats have now been sold worldwide, thirty of which are in the UK. The J/70’s appeal and performance ability have won it numerous accolades already, including European Yacht of the Year, and winner of the sportsboat class at Round the Island Race. Demo sails on the J/70 will be available throughout the show.

J/88 family speedster sailing off NewportThe J/88 Family Speedster
From the J/Boats sport range that has given us the global successes of the J/111 and J/70 comes the J/88; an 8m family performance boat with stability, style and sailing comfort. The J/88 is large enough to provide the creature comforts of a sit-in cockpit, inboard diesel engine, and overnight interior with head, but small enough to be single-point lifted and trailerable.

Design highlights include a high-aspect, non-overlapping sail plan (no genoas) with a carbon fibre double-spreader mast which is deck stepped for easy rigging, tuning and keeping the main cabin dry. The 1.98m 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 siblings; fast and balanced upwind with planing performance downwind in moderate to fresh breezes.

On deck, the day sailing comforts include a spacious T-shaped cockpit similar to the J/111, with seating and backrests forward of the floor-mounted traveller and a wide-open cockpit aft due to the tiller-steered, transom mounted high-aspect rudder. Adding to the J/88’s ease-of-sailing characteristics is an optional under deck furler, retractable carbon bowsprit and cockpit-led sail controls. Below deck, the J/88 sports a weekending layout with optional V-berth, two full length settees, private head forward of the bulkhead, a chart table area, Igloo cooler and galley sink.  For more Southampton Boat Show information

J/70 sailboat rounding mark at New York YC regattaNew York YC US Qualifiers- Yacht Club Battleground!
(Newport, RI)- At the 2014 U.S. Qualifying Series for the Invitational Cup presented by Rolex, top amateur sailors from two Texas yacht clubs— Rush Creek Yacht Club and Texas Corinthian Yacht Club— will hope to augment the nautical legacies of their respective clubs and the Lone Star State.

“This event is not about me,” says Ryan Glaze, the skipper for the RCYC entry and a former commodore of the club. “It’s about Rush Creek. We want to make our yacht known and respected in our circle. This isn’t about me or any of my teammates.”

The biennial keelboat competition is the only path for American yacht clubs hoping to compete in the 2015 Invitational Cup presented by Rolex, the premiere, international, Corinthian, big-boat competition. Both events are hosted by the New York Yacht Club at Harbour Court, in Newport, R.I.

In the U.S. Qualifying Series, two-dozen yacht clubs from around the country will sail for four days in matched fleets of Sonars and J/70s; after a round-robin, the top teams compete in the finals sailing J/70s. The top three yacht clubs in the final standings will earn a berth in the 2015 Invitational Cup presented by Rolex, which is sailed in September 2015 in the New York Yacht Club Swan 42. Bragging rights are part of the package.

J/70 from Texas sailing New York regatta“It’s a real privilege to represent the club,” says Texas Corinthian skipper Curtis Hutcheson, who will be sailing in the event for a second time. “We want to have a good showing. We know a lot of the competitors. The big difference [compared to other regattas] is not having any professional sailors. You don’t get to do many all-amateur events. It’s good to keep it Corinthian. And I love the club format.”

With the ability to sail year round, competitors from the two Texas yacht clubs have to deal with an “issue” that’s somewhat foreign to their competitors in the Northeast and Midwest, burnout.

“This summer we’ve been laying kind of low,” says Glaze. “But we’ve got a pretty rigorous training we’re hitting here at the end of August. Hopefully we’ll peak at the right time.”

After finishing sixth in 2012, Hutcheson believes that extra attention to the details will help lift Texas Corinthian into the top three.

“The conditions are likely to vary greatly,” he says, “There are a lot of tight crossing situations and those are going to make the difference. We want to have good starts, as it’s a tough fleet to come back in. We’re excited. We’re practicing on our teamwork.”

No matter where Texas Corinthian ends up in the final standings, however, Hutcheson is sure of one thing, he and his team will thoroughly enjoy the experience.

“We had a great time in 2012,” he says. “Everyone was so friendly. It was very competitive with all sorts of conditions and great boats. It was an awesome event.”  Sailing photo credits- Billy Black.  For more New York YC US Qualifying Series sailing information

J/105s sailing Rolex Big Boat Series in San FranciscoRolex Big Boat Series Celebrates Golden Jubilee
(San Francisco, CA)- One hundred and sixty-five years after a flood of fortune seekers headed to San Francisco in search of riches during the Gold Rush of 1849, a new generation of prospectors will be panning for treasure during the 50th anniversary "Golden Jubilee" edition of the Rolex Big Boat Series (RBBS) scheduled for September 11-14 at the St. Francis Yacht Club.

J/120 fleet sailing Rolex Big Boat Series in San FranciscoFounded in 1964, the inaugural regatta attracted nine yachts.  The popularity of the event saw a gradual expansion through the years to the current six divisions, with accompanying perpetual trophies, two with historical significance:  the City of San Francisco Trophy, which was established in 1968, is one of the two golden spades used to break ground for the Golden Gate Bridge in 1933; while the Atlantic Perpetual Trophy, established in 1978, features the ship’s bell of the 1905 TransAtlantic Ocean record holder Atlantic.  For the current wave of forty-niners (aka gold seekers), the six coveted trophies – which are awarded based on fleet participation – accompany a Rolex Oyster Perpetual Submariner timepiece presented to the winning skippers.

J/70s sailing Rolex Big Boat Series on San Francisco BayThat the Rolex Big Boat Series has kept pace with the evolution of the sport is evident by its enduring appeal to both professional and Corinthian competitors.  Breaking its tradition of including only boats 35’ and larger has recently allowed classes such as the J/70 and Melges 24 to follow Performance Multihulls in being added to the mix of ORR, HPR and One Design classes racing.

Rolex Big Boat Series Event Chair Pat Nolan is expecting a strong turnout by the J/70 class (expected to be about 25 boats) as the popularity of that class continues to grow.  “That class (J/70) has taken off tremendously,” said Nolan.  “Our event will be the West Coast alternative to the J/70 Worlds in Newport, which will be taking place concurrently. We also expect the J/120s will be back, while the J/111s should have about 10 boats on the starting line. The biggest challenge with over 100 boats racing is managing them effectively to provide the best racing. Last year, three courses kept everyone out of each other’s way, and having the finish off the club makes for a great spectacle.”

After many years as a sponsor of the St. Francis Big Boat Series, Rolex became title sponsor of the event in 2005. The event has continued to grow in stature, and now sailors from around the world come to the Rolex Big Boat Series expecting some of the best racing offered in the U.S., if not the world.  Sailing photo credits- Rolex/ Daniel Forster.  For more Rolex Big Boat Series sailing information

J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

For many families, the past weekend marked the sudden and dramatic end to their summer vacations as it was time to head for home and get the kids back to school.  It also marked the dramatic conclusion of the quadrennial RORC race know as the Round Britain & Irelands— by far the longest “round islands” race in the world and certainly one of the most challenging.  Sailing the entire circuit were a courageous J/111 and J/122.  Meanwhile, over in Germany, the J/70 sailors enjoyed the third stage of the Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga in Berlin, sailing on the beautiful Wansee Lake right in the middle of the city.

Hopping across the pond, there were two significant events in New England.  The debut of the Marblehead ONE Regatta hosted by three famous clubs (Eastern YC, Boston YC, Corinthian YC) was a resounding success, especially for the one-design classes of J/70s and J/105s as well as the PHRF offshore classes.  Taking place just south in Buzzards Bay, the J/24 USA Nationals were hosted out of Marion, MA in absolutely gorgeous sailing conditions all weekend long.

Out in the sunny, stormy Midwest, Chicago YC’s Verve Cup Inshore edition was held with a J/70 class in attendance.  Conditions were not ideal, yet the CYC PRO’s managed to squeeze in some good racing for the 70 fleet.  Meanwhile, across Lake Michigan, the J/35s held their North American Championships at Muskegon YC out of Muskegon, Michigan— great times were had by all in that event!

Finally, out West a number of J’s were competing in the Long Point Race Week hosted by Newport Harbor Yacht Club in collaboration with Balboa Yacht Club. Read the great report from J/125 TIMESHAVER owner, Viggo Torbensen.

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:

Aug 30-31- J/80 Danish Nationals- Niva (Copenhagen), Denmark
Aug 28-31- Pornic J/80 Cup- Pornic, France
Sep 8-13- J/70 World Championship- New York YC- Newport, RI
Sep 10-14- J/80 North Americans- Annapolis, MD- Annapolis YC
Sep 11-15- 50th Rolex Big Boat Series- San Francisco, CA
Sep 11-14- J/30 North Americans- Riverside, CT
Sep 12-14- J/80 German Nationals- Glucksburg, Germany
Sep 19-26- J/24 World Championship- Newport, RI
Sep 20-21- J/70 West Coast Championship- Newport Beach, CA
Sep 24-27- J/70 Europeans- Riva del Garda, Italy
Sep 25-28- J/80 Italian Nationals- Loano, Italy
Sep 25-28- J/105 North American Championship- Toronto, ONT
Sep 26-28- J/Fest San Diego- San Diego, CA
Sep 28- Oct 5- J/80 World Championship- Annapolis, MD
Oct 10-12- Lorient J/80 Open- Lorient, France
Oct 24-26- J/105 Masters Regatta- San Diego, CA
Oct 24-26- Seattle Grand Prix Regatta- Seattle, WA
Oct 30- Nov 2- French J/80 Nationals- La Rochelle, France
Oct 31- Nov 2- J/105 Lipton Cup- San Diego, CA
Jan 18-23- 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/111 British Soldier sailing RORC Round Britain & Ireland Race1,800nm Around Islands Race- Most Brutal Ever!
J/111 and J/122 Excel in Body-Breaking Conditions
(Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- Three yachts finished the RORC Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race on Friday 23rd August, deciding the winners of both IRC One and IRC Two and there were celebrations on the dock for all that survived to tell the tale of what may be one of the world’s most demanding races, short of the Volvo Ocean Race.

J/122 Relentless on Jellyfish- winning IRC 2 in Round Britain & Ireland raceThe J/122, RELENTLESS ON JELLYFISH, skippered by James George and owned by Chris Radford, crossed the finish line off the Royal Yacht Squadron line on Cowes at 14:52:57 on 22 August to win IRC Two.  The “Jellyfish” crew has been competing in the RORC Season's Points Championship since May and their result in the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race has lifted them to Top Yacht in IRC Two and third overall for the season! The crew let out a big cheer as they heard the news dockside.

"The last night was just awesome," James George explained dockside. "Through some clever navigation by Tom Gadsen and David Lowe after Blackrock, we not only overtook our friends on the J/111 BRITISH SOLDIER, but got seven miles in front of them. However, BRITISH SOLDIER was after us all the way up the south west coast. It got up to about 25 knots of wind as the last night approached and we took down our spinnaker to have dinner, but BRITISH SOLDIER kept their spinnaker up and so did we, as a result. They put their biggest spinnaker up and started pulling into us, so up went our biggest spinnaker! It just went on and on, all through the night, pretty much a full-on match race after 11 days at sea!  BRITISH SOLDIER was a worthy opponent; they shortened the gap to just a few miles by St. Catherine's Point where the tide was turning. We made it into the Solent just in time, while they had to punch the tide. I have got to say that was one of the most incredible nights sailing I have ever had, or will have and for that reason, the Round Britain and Ireland is the best yacht race I have ever taken part in."

J/111 British Soldier team- with Jeff Johnstone of J/BoatsAll of the Jellyfish crew were dockside to give three cheers to BRITISH SOLDIER as the Army Sailing Association's team finished the race. Jeff Johnstone, President of J/Boats was also on the dock. Jeff was attending the J/111 World Championship in Cowes: "It is great to see our boats being used in such a terrific offshore race and the extraordinary condition of the boats after taking a pounding in such wild conditions, with gales and massive seas, is testament to the crews. The skipper of Jellyfish told me they broke a batten and a light bulb, which is amazing after what they have gone through and for British Soldier to race with just five crew was remarkable (after losing some to injuries and putting them ashore!).”

There were only five serving members of the British Army on board BRITISH SOLDIER, a boat that is normally raced with eight. Due to a crew member returning to duty before the start and another taken off during the race with a dislocated shoulder, BRITISH SOLDIER was two men down, but still full of fight. Soldier's skipper, Phil Caswell spoke about the experience:  "A tough race, but there was never any need to motivate the lads, they just got on with it and the battle with Jelllyfish was the catalyst that we focused on. Congratulations to their skipper and crew! This race has been an incredible experience for us. All of the crew are decent sailors but with an average age of just 25, we have massively increased our experience. In a short period of time, we have learnt so much and I am sure the Army Sailing Association will be back for the next race. This race is something that we will all draw on for the rest of our lives. Racing around Britain and Ireland is a fascinating experience."   Sailing photo credits- Patrick Eden and also Paul Wyeth (    For more RORC Round Britain & Ireland Race sailing information

J/70s sailing Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga in Berlin, GermanyYCBG Team Triumphs @ J/70 Bundesliga
(Berlin, Germany)- This past week, the Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga sailed its third Act on the beautiful Wansee Lakes of Berlin, Germany.  The YC Berlin-Grünau with Jochen Schümann was the winner, just two points ahead of the Norddeutsche Regatta Verein (NRV) from Hamburg with Johannes Polgar as skipper.  The Deutsche Touring YC of Lake Starnberg with Julian Stückl as team leader finished third.

The very close total scores of the Berlin event reflects the “high voltage” competition that was palpable until the last race on the Wannsee. As a result of Schumann’s YCBG taking to top score, it prevented the first “hat trick” by any club in the series.  Nevertheless, Hamburg’s NRV team second place put them firmly in the lead on the overall series leader table with a five pts lead.

J/70 sailing German sailing leagueThe Wansee provided many exciting races in ultra-difficult sailing conditions. The wind shifted a lot, in fact providing “tornado-like” swirling puffs and driving many of the top sailors wild with Mother Nature’s “mind games”— everyone trying to out-guess one another how it would shift or fill in next (perhaps a bit like the famous “Mystical Lake” at Tufts University in Boston, MA!).

Before the last of the 45 races - 15 for each club - it was really dramatic. The situation came to a head in a three-way battle between the YC Berlin-Grunau, the Norddeutscher Regatta Verein and the Deutsche Touring YC (Tutzing). In the end, the most experienced team led by YCBG skipper Jochen Schumann and their team of Ingo Borkowski, Gunnar Bahr and Erik Powilleit prevailed against their competition by scoring a 2nd in the last race to win by two pts overall!

Jochen Schumann sailing for YC Berlin-Grunau"We wanted a small yacht club to go out and beat the big clubs, and we did that. Despite fewer training opportunities, you can sail with a good team and get consistent performances in the front of the fleet. I hope it remains so exciting,” said Jochen Schumann at the awards ceremony. With the victory, the club from Germany’s capital city Berlin improved by two places to sixth in the overall series standings.

The Deutsche Touring YC took third for the third time in a row in Berlin and, as a result, remain in second overall in the League standings. "We want to consolidate our position in the series and see if it finally goes forward at the next regatta in Kiel," said helmsman Julian Stückl- his team included Patrick Follmann, Phillip Blinn and Luis Tarabochia in Berlin.

The win for Schumann and crew at YCBG did not come easy.  In fact, after the first four races on the first day they were lying in 8th place!  In the twelve races sailed on day one, there were eight winners. The leading trio was Württemberg YC, the Deutsche Touring YC and Kieler YC and the overall series leader NRV was nowhere close to the podium!

J/70 family sailing German sailing leagueAll teams completed the day with four races and for the two clubs from the south it ran very smoothly.  The 2nd place team in the 2013 Lake Constance event, the Württemberg YC (WYC), took two 1sts and two 2nds to lead the fleet- the team of Stefanie Rothweiler, Felix Diesch, Marvin Frisch and Christian Severens simply did not miss a beat, nor a windshift! Close behind in second place with three 2nds and a 1st was the DTYC team of Julian Stückl, Patrick Follmann, Phillip Blinn and Luis Tarabochia. Third at the time with two 1sts a 3rd and 4th was the Kieler Yacht-Club with the crew of Sönke Boy, Oliver Studnitz, Sinje Haasler and Thorben Nowak.

At the end of the first day, a clear favorite could not be determined, especially with eight different teams winning races out of twelve total!  The big surprise was the crew struggling aboard YCBG— Jochen Schumann’s team of Ingo Borkowski, Gunnar Bahr and Erik Powilleit could not win a single race for the Yacht Club Berlin-Grunau. The triple Olympic champion and his crew found themselves in eighth place, in fact, finishing last in their first race!  A humble opening gambit for what many thought were going to be the top team all weekend long!

J/70 sailors celebrate with Willy KuhweideThat evening, the German sailors celebrated the 50th anniversary of Willy Kuhweide’s victory at the 1964 Olympic games in Tokyo. The guest of honor traveled all the way from the USA and was enthusiastic about the J/70 Segel-Bundesliga format: "German Sailing has experienced a real boom in recent years, which is also due to the fantastic development of the J/70 Segel-Bundesliga. This is great!”

The second day of racing marked the brilliant comeback of YCBG’s team led by Jochen Schumann.  After sailing 29 of 45 total races, Schumann’s team rapidly ascended the leaderboard after compiling three 1sts and three 2nds to take the regatta lead.  They were followed by defending regatta champions DTYC in second and Kieler YC in third.  While YCBG staged an epic comeback, so did DTYC, by pulling themselves up by their collective “bootstraps” and keeping themselves in contention with a 1-1-2-4-4. "The DTYC has sailed from a hopeless situation again and again to the front and to maintain consistent scores,” commented Andreas Buchert.

J/70 video interviewOn Saturday evening, there was the premiere of “Sailor Talk" from leading sailors involved in the German Bundesliga sailing with presenter Matthias Bohn. Included were Janika Puls from Lubecker YC, Andreas Buchert from Bodensee Yachtclub Überlingen and Heiko Winkler from Schwerin Yacht Club.  Here is the discussion (in German)-

The fourth regatta in the J/70 Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga series will be sailed from 5-7 September, on the inner fjord in Kiel, Germany in just two weeks!
J/70 Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga- sailing summary   J/70 Segel-Bundesliga Facebook page.   For more J/70 Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga sailing information

J/24s sailing Nationals on Buzzards BayCOUGAR Claws Way To J/24 Nationals Victory
(Marion, MA)- Will Welles, of Portsmouth, RI, led his COUGAR team to the J/24 US National Championship, hosted by Beverly Yacht Club in Massachusetts. With Alex Bishop, Luke Lawrence, Eric Lawrence and Nick Turney on board, Welles managed six first-place tallies in the 10 races for just 27 net points. He overcame a penalty in race eight, and ended with a scorecard of 1,11,4,6,1,1,1,[19/(30%)],1,1. Cougar finished 12 points ahead of second-place John Mollicone on HELLY HANSEN, while Michael Marshall’s PIPE DREAM took third overall  with 45 points.

J/24 COUGAR skippered by Will WellesWelles commended his last-minute crew, including Eric Lawrence who was trimming the genoa for the first time ever on a J/24. “It was remarkable that he stepped up to the plate,” said Welles. “It was a huge part of our success.” The other key, he explained, was working to get the mast butt positioned just right. “Early on in the regatta, we were a little late to push it forward. The mast we have is pretty bendy so we have to be aggressive with the mast butt.” After moving it forward quite a bit after Saturday’s first race, Cougar found that extra gear.

After the first day’s racing on Friday, a familiar name was at the top of the leaderboard. Mollicone’s HELLY HANSEN held a four-point lead over Welles’ COUGAR. Another four points back in third was Sumio Shimoyama of Japan with Mark Hillman on SOKOKUMARU. Mollicone is the current J/24 Midwinter Champion (he also won in 2013), crewed on the 2013 J/24 World Championship team, and won both the 2012 and 2013 J/24 North American Championships.

J/24 sailboats- rounding markForty-five teams were competing in Marion, including entrants from various parts of the United States, along with several Canadian crews and even representatives from Japan, France and Australia. Welles got the regatta going with a win in race one, when winds were 6-8 knots. Mike Ingham’s NAUTALYTIC followed in second, and Travis Odenbach’s HONEY BADGER in third. The breeze picked up a bit to 8-10 knots in the next contest, as Aidan Glackin’s MENTAL FLOSS grabbed the victory. Natalie Penner’s GIGGLES and John Wilsey’s PANCETA DOBLE completed the top trio. In the day’s final battle, the Shimoyama/Hillman team placed first, ahead of Mollicone and Wilsey. Leading the six-boat Women’s Division was Penner on GIGGLES and her crew from Austin, Texas.

The second day of racing on Saturday enabled the race committee to run four races! At this point, Welles launched into first place. In pristine conditions, Welles began Saturday with a sixth-place finish, and then won the next three races. Tossing an 11 in race two, Welles now totaled 14 points, heading into the final day of competition. Marshall’s PIPE DREAM also notched a stellar day with a 3,2,3,3, and moved into second place overall with 22 points. Mollicone’s HELLY HANSEN was five points back in third place.

J/24 Sailors for the Sea- sailing into 2nd at NationalsWinds around 16 knots greeted competitors on the sunny Saturday morning, when Ingham’s NAUTALYTIC acquired the day’s first win. Mollicone trailed in second, and Marshall in third. Welles grabbed his first of three consecutive bullets in the next bout, as Marshall and Ingham completed the upper three. Following Welles in the day’s third race, in winds ranging between 12-16 knots, was Thomas Barbeau’s NAVTECH.CA and Marshall. The familiar trio of Welles, Ingham and Marshall again led Saturday’s final battle. Continuing atop the six-boat Women’s Division was Penner’s GIGGLES.

Sunday dawned with another beautiful day in Marion. With winds between 12-14 knots, Mollicone earned the win in Sunday’s initial duel, as Tony Parker’s BANGOR PACKET and Marshall filled out the top spots. Welles put up another bullet in the next race, when winds stabilized at 10-12 knots. Ingham tracked in second and Parker in third. In the last battle of the Championship, Welles locked in the title with a first, with Pat Toole and Ingham behind.

Behind the top three overall (Welles, Mollicone and Marshall) were Ingham in fourth and Travis Odenbach’s HONEY BADGER in fifth.  Winner of the Women’s Division was Penner’s GIGGLES gang from Austin, TX.  For more USA J/24 Nationals sailing information

J/35s sailing North Americans off Muskegon, MIJ/35 North Americans A WILD RIDE!
(Muskegon, MI)- After three action packed days and eleven exciting races, Bill Wildner and the Crew of MR BILL’s WILD RIDE captured their 4th J/35 North American Championship title this past weekend at Muskegon Yacht Club in Muskegon Michigan. Bill credits his steady and loyal crew who have been with him through all four Championship campaigns. The boat was perfectly prepared, the sails were crispy, and the crew work was flawless! Ed Bayer and the crew of FALCON (also four-time NA winners) placed second and Bruce Metcalf and the crew of BOZO’s CIRCUS, a last minute entry, rounded out the podium placing third.

For the three day weekend, the sailing conditions were outstanding with steady breezes of 8-10 knots, making it easy for the race committee to bang out all eleven races and get everyone back to the dock early every day for refreshments, story-telling enhanced by multiple refreshments (mostly exaggerations and extraordinary embellishments— a.k.a. sea stories), and really good BBQ food.

Race Chairman and Class President, Larry Taunt commented that, "the J/35 fleet has an outstanding group of owners and crew. The racing was intense with ridiculously close crossings, and all the boats finishing within seconds of each other. The level of competition is simply outstanding. On shore, we have almost as much fun as the Muskegon Yacht Club provided great food, drink, atmosphere, and a pool to cool everyone off. I wish we could do this every weekend!"

This was the 30th J/35 North American Championship Regatta and while the fleet is aging, this venerable design is still very competitive around the country and provides an excellent competition when they get together to play.  In fact, during the NA’s, the J/35 owners held a J/35 Class Association meeting- it was recorded as a “webinar” which can be found at

The fleet is working hard to re-build the J/35 Class association. This year’s NA’s and this meeting were the first big steps in this process.  The J/ website has been updated, and they’ve added a J/35 Class Facebook page.  For any J/35 owners that wish to contribute new energy, communication, and fresh ideas, be sure to let them know!   For more J/35 North Americans sailing information

J/70 Heartbreaker- wins Chicago VerveJ/70 HEARTBREAKER Bullets Verve Cup
(Chicago, IL)- After Saturday’s races were postponed due to weather, 71 boats made the most of a spectacular day of sailing in Chicago in the annual Verve Cup Inshore Regatta, hosted by the Chicago Yacht Club at its Belmont Station. The annual regatta features the best one-design sailing in the Midwest, with nine classes in this year’s event.

“It was some nice racing on Sunday,” said Jessica Jamieson, chair of the Verve Inshore. “Unfortunately, we had to abandon racing on Saturday due to the weather, but I was pleased to see the turnout of so many fleets— especially the J/70s!”

With temperatures in the upper 80s under sunny skies, winds shifted to the east/southeast at approximately 8 knots throughout the day.

“We made up for the weather yesterday with champagne sailing today in Chicago,” said Jay Kehoe, on-the-water director for the Chicago Yacht Club. “We also saw great performances by Sarah Renz in the J/70s and Mark Teborek, who are both preparing to represent CYC in the New York Yacht Club Invitational Qualifying Series in the first week of September.”

PRO Rick Lillie said there was a 55-degree wind shift during the first race, which made it a challenge to keep the course somewhat square.

“A special thanks to the Race Committee teJ/70 Aquaholiks team taking 2nd at Chicago Verveam, who moved every mark several times today,” Lillie said. “Good, tight racing and we were able to get three races in today. And we are happy to host the largest J/70 turnout of the season.”

The J/70 class is indeed growing and attracted competitors from as far away as Norway. Eighteen J/70s competed in this year’s regatta. HEARTBREAKER, skippered by Bob Hughes of the Macatawa Bay Yacht Club, earned the top spot in the J/70 class, scoring three straight bullets. The Heartbreaker crew included Taylor Canfield, ranked No. 1 match racer in the world.

“We got in three great races today, with the wind backing from the southeast all the way to the east. But overall, it was some good, fair racing,” Canfield said. “The city is great — freshwater, Lake Michigan is awesome. It’s one of my favorite places to sail and one of my favorite places to be.”

The balance of the top five saw some remarkable scores, all having at least one chance hopping aboard the runaway shopping trolley loaded with cash.  Sailing consistently to hang onto second was Martin Johnsson’s AQUAHOLIKS team with a 2-6-3 for 11 pts.  Also in the same category of performance was Tom Londrigan from Island Bay YC on POLARIS, scoring 6-4-6 for 16 pts.  From there, it was anything but clear who would fill out the balance of the top five.  In fact, going into the last race on the last leg, six boats were in contention for 4th and 5th.  In the end, John Gottwald’s EAGLES WINGS overcame a slow start to roll into fourth with a 14-2-2 for 18 pts.

Fifth place was determined by a tie-breaker.  Lloyd Karzen’s TAIPAN/ SB managed a 3-12-4 for 19 pts to win that tie-break over Leif Sigmond’s NORBOY who had a 5-7-7.  Just missing the top five were John Heaton’s EMPEIRIA with 20 pts and Amy Neill’s NITEMARE with 23 pts.

Top “family-owned” boat was Martin & Jorgen Johnsson’s AQUAHOLIKS from Lake Forest YC and top women skipper was Amy Neill on NITEMARE from Chicago YC.  For more Verve Cup sailing information

J/125 Timeshaver sailing Long Point Race WeekJ/125 TIMESHAVER Loves Long Point Race Week
(Newport Beach, CA)- The Long Point Race Week was this year hosted by Newport Harbor Yacht Club in collaboration with Balboa Yacht Club. It’s is considered one of the highlights of the SoCal offshore sailing calendar in mid-August.  Here’s a report from J/125 TIMESHAVER owner, Viggo Torbensen:

“July 3rd at 10:35am the email rolled in from the NHYC Race Office, the request for invitation had been opened, the race was on to secure a spot, be one of the 40 lucky boat owners being accepted by NHYC to race in this stunning event. I was careless and waited until 2PM before I sent "Timeshaver's" request for invitation, the list was already 35 boats deep. The Long Point Race Week event is one of the best kept secrets in sailboat racing and the capacity of 40 boats is reached quickly every year. A very special event where racing is first and foremost, but good times ashore at the outstations on the beaches of Moonstone and Whites Cove is a close second.

An exquisite fleet of 40 boats vying for the overall winner of the historic Long Point Race Week trophy. At the top of the list STP65 "Bad Pack" skippered by Tom Holthus to Alan Andrew's 38 "Doubletime". Too many fast boats to mention in between, pretty much the "creme de la creme" of SoCal racing. Eleven J-Boats on the line, in division 2 -my own boat "Timeshaver" J125, and "Derivative" J125 skippered by Mark Surber. Division 3 sported "Innocent Merritment J160 the reaching machine, J133 "Picante" and "Tango", the four J120's were stacked in division 4 "J Almighty", "Adios", "Shenanigans" and "Pole Dancer" together with ultra shiny "Marisol" the J124, Seth need to share with us his choice or wax and finally "Patriot" J44.

Friday the fleet was sent off to the island from the water outside the Santa Ana river, a ways up the coast from the Newport Harbor jetty. The trick is always to find the right time to make the crossing, 8-12 knots of breeze moderate shifts, we started with our light #1, later changed the the heavy#1 and took off, we found ourselves racing boat for boat with Chris Hemans in his IRC46 "Varuna", we were quite happy with the company. Long story short we ended up about a mile too far west on the course before we tacked over. "Derivative" had tacked about twenty minutes sooner than us. Mid channel, we started seeing 280-290 and 15 knots and were hoping for the anticipated shift to go 310, it did go 310 and briefly 320, but not until we were a mile from the finish. "Derivative" crossed ahead of us pretty much on the line and took 4th in class and 12 in fleet. We took a modest 20 in the fleet and a disastrous 9th of 11 in class. "Elixir" N/M 50 corrected on everybody with "Pyewacket" Andrews 70 skippered by Roy Disney in second and "Bolt" one of the two TP52's in third.

Saturday sported a race from Long Point up the coast to Ship Rock and back. AP went up right at 1PM and we hung around in beautiful sunshine waiting for the anticipated afternoon breeze to fill in. RC decided to shorten the course and we all followed RC up the coast as the breezed filled in nicely to 10-14 knots straight down the coast. Before the RC had a chance to drop the marks and get the first start of division 4 on the course the wind started lifting 40-60 degrees. This made the velocity super unstable as the wind came from shore, heated by a giant hot rock called Catalina. The shorted course up to Ship Rock proved disastrous for many, others were banking on luck rather than skills and got away. We were sort of in the middle, not taking any flyers, making constant adjustments to keep the boat going. Right at the Ship rock we experienced a full conversion, many boats struggled to get by in no breeze, Alan Andrew got pushed within 10 feet of the Ship Rock, had his motor on, but never in gear, it was a close call. Now for the better part of the race, we were back in the breeze 12-15 knows running the A2 down the coast back to Long Point, we were exchanging gybes with SC50 "Horizon", few miles from the finish "Horizon" gybed away right when we got headed and the velocity increased a few knots now to 16-17. We finished on as full plane. Took first in class and 2 in fleet. "Bolt" took the fleet honor, "Varuna" in third. We had moved our way back into the mix. Bullets matter, we need one more.

Sunday we race back to Newport, same scenario as Saturday, AP up at 1PM zero breeze. This time the course cannot be shortened, it's sail or fuel back to the mainland. The lovely afternoon started filling in right before two o'clock. We picked the pin end of the line, wanting to get away from the big boats in our class, we got it surprisingly easy and right at the gun. Shortly thereafter consolidating a bit to weather we set the zero, the next five miles defined the race, we were red lining at 105-108% and stretched nicely, doing 9.8-10 knots of boat speed in 9.6 knots of breeze at 80 degrees apparent. A3 and staysail for mid-channel, kept thing under control, we were keeping up with most, ended up winning the last race running with our A2 and split 3rd in fleet with "Bud" the other TP52. Mark Surber "Derivative" had run a much lower course than us and came screaming in to the finish, they took 4th in class.”

As a result of TIMESHAVER’s bullet in the third race, they claimed top honors in Division 2 followed by Mark Surber’s J/125 DERIVATIVE in fourth place overall.

The Division 3 teams saw John Lyon’s magnificent J/160 INNOCENT MERRIMENT from San Diego YC start out with a bullet and finished second overall, just one point back from the top of the podium!  Third, and also winning a race, was Doug Jorgensen’s J/133 PICANTE.

The Division 4 crews were just about over-run by J/Teams, ultimately taking 6 of the top 10 spots.  Top J/crew was Paul Stemler’s J/44 PATRIOT from Newport Harbor YC, taking 3rd overall.  In fourth was Seth Hall’s J/124 MARISOL.  The next four spots- 6th to 9th- were occupied by J/120s.  In 6th was Mike Hatch’s ALMIGHTY, 7th was Peter Bretschger’s ADIOS, 8th was Gary Winton’s SHENANIGANS and 9th was Tom & Terri Manok’s POLE DANCER. For more Long Point Race Week sailing information

J/105s sailing at Marblehead ONE regattaJ/ONE Marblehead Raging Success
(Marblehead, MA)- According to Hill & Lowden’s George Lowden (the Boston area J/Dealer), “The past several days saw lots of J/Boat action here in Marblehead. Seventeen J/105’s, eleven J/70’s, three J/111’s, a J/122, four J/109’s and assorted older model J’s all competed in this three day event- the Marblehead ONE Regatta.

There were a variety of different wind and sea conditions.  But, basically the weather was very good for the whole regatta. Overall, the turnout by J/Teams in the area was excellent. Almost half of all the registered boats were J/Boats.”  Indeed, with two large one-design classes of J/70s and J/105s and the rest sailing in PHRF fleets, it would have been easy to mistake the event as a “New England J/Fest”!

J/70s sailing Marblehead ONE regattaFriday we had 6 to 12 knots out of the North-Northeast which provided great racing for Line 1 (larger PHRF racing boats) and Line 2 (one-designs and PHRF Class 5). Both lines got off 3 races sailing 1.2 to 2 mile legs of windward-leeward courses.  The wind stayed up and actually built a little as the day went on to provide great racing for the short-handed class who raced a 90 mile offshore race on Friday night finishing Saturday morning.

Saturday the wind built from the northeast with a good swell and chop to provide Champagne Sailing and a perfect platform for championship racing. Line 1 got off 3 long races capped off with a five leg race with 2 mile long legs. Line 2 raced 4 races providing some great surfing conditions for the J/70s and J/105s. The Navigator classes and PHRF Class 6 started their regatta off on Line 3 "the inside line" near Salem/Beverly Harbors. These boats raced 4 races around the buoys as well as drop marks, getting to see some of the great scenery around the Marblehead waters.

Sunday the wind gods were a little sleepy and the racing didn't get started until between noon and 1pm or so depending on what line/area you were starting at. Each class got off one race in 5 to 7 knots of wind. The short-handed class joined Line 3 and raced a 13 mile course that went past Manchester by the Sea.

J/109 sailing at Marblehead ONE regattaStarting with the large and competitive J/105 class, it was clear there is several new faces in the crowd who have jumped into the class to challenge the old guard.  Having said that, it was “old school” showing “new school” the ropes this time around.  Long-time J/105 veteran Fred deNapoli and crew aboard ALLEGRO SEMPLICITA rattled off four bullets in a row to dominate their class like they have never done before.  Chalk it up to good living and good wine, according to one of Fred’s good buddies!  Sailing better all the time was Matt Pike’s GOT QI, sailing to a 3-2-6-2 to take second on a tie-breaker over Jon Wales’ BANTRY that had a 4-3-3-3 also for 13 pts.  Fourth was past J/105 NA Champion Ken Colburn skippering GHOST and fifth was Marblehead NOOD winner, Ric Dexter’s CIRCE’s CUP.

The J/70 class also had a number of new faces in the crowd make for a pretty radical changing of the guard in just one weekend!  Taking the J/70 class was local rock star Billy Lynn sailing the mighty AFRICA to a 1-2-2-2 for 7 pts total.  Not far off the pace was Kurt Winkelmann’s NAVEGA RACING with a 3-3-3-1 for 10 pts.  Third was Alex Meleny’s LAYLA with a 2-4-1-4 for 11 pts.  Close racing for the top three and it could have easily gone one way or another for these three boats in each race.  Rounding out the top five were class veterans Dave Franzel on SPRING taking 4th and Frank McNamara’s CHINOOK in 5th.

J/111 sailing Marblehead ONE regattaIn the world of offshore PHRF handicap racing, the two J/111s in PHRF 2 class took 4th and 5th respectively, Mike Williamson’s BRIGADOON and Ed Kaye’s PRAVDA 2.  In PHRF 3 class, the J/109s dominated, taking four of the top five.  Gary Weisberg’s HEATWAVE won, followed by Chris Zibailo’s SUPERSTITION in 2nd, Dan Boyd & Mitch Wiest’s WILD THING fourth and John Doub’s RESOLVE in fifth.  The J/33 SIROCCO sailed by Ward Blodgett took third in PHRF 5 class.  And, in PHRF Double-handed class the J/122 RESOLUTE sailed by Scott Miller took 2nd while Mike Piper’s EAGLES DARE took 5th.

The ONE Team Championship went to TEAM UCYC (Under the Crane Yacht Club).  The team consisted of:
  • One Design: the J/70 AFRICA skippered by Bill Lynn
  • Racing: the J/33 SCIROCCO skippered by Ward Blodgett
  • Navigator: the Pearson 30 CORSAIR owned by Ralph & Peter Carlton
 Africa was 1st out of 11 J/70s, Sirocco was 3rd out of 7 boats in Class 5 and Corsair was 1st out of 7 boats in Navigator Class 2.   For more Marblehead ONE Regatta sailing information

What friends, alumni and crew of J/Boats are doing worldwide
J/70 sail training video* J/70 German sailing team training video- beautifully edited with some cool music.  Check it out here.

J/34 IOR sailboat- Knee Deep from Lake Erie* The J/34 IOR called KNEE DEEP continues its summer offshore sailing campaign on the Great Lakes (Lake Erie, Lake Huron and Lake Michigan).  Her owners, Brett and Katie Langolf, recently competed in the Chicago-Mackinac Race, placing well in their fleet and apparently had a terrific time on Mackinac Island post-race.  Here’s an updated photo of them competing in the Mac Race.  Their beautifully restored and maintained J/34 IOR sails under the burgees of Sandusky Sailing Club and Deadman’s Flat YC in Ohio.

J/125 Timeshaver sailing offshore* J/125 Santa Barbara- King Harbor Report from K-Mag (Keith Magnussen at Ullman Sails in Newport Beach, CA):  “Sometimes sailboat racing is more about the destination than the race.  The annual Santa Barbara to King Harbor Race (SB-KH) offers both of those aspects.  Santa Barbara is a beautiful city located just north of Los Angeles.  The picturesque Channel Islands grace the coastline inspiring the racers who arrive starting Wednesday night.

This year I was highly anticipating the race onboard the J-125 Timeshaver.  Viggo Torbensen (owner) has been working hard to optimize his boat with a great sail inventory and the recent results have reflected this.  Our other crew consisted of Charlie Underwood, Jack Bazz, Jack Maranto Blake Hamilton and coming in from Texas was Sean Nelson.  A great group of sailors and friends.

Taking the Surf-liner Train up the coast has been a tradition with most racers and I chose the early route leaving San Juan Capistrano around 9am.  Sean met up with the train in Los Angeles and we got to catch up for a few hours as the Los Angeles Valley rolled by.
Just Go And Sail | Santa Barbara to King Harbor Race Santa Barbara to King Harbor Race | Train to SB

The train breaks to the Pacific and the views get really nice just north of Ventura.  Blake had the boat in the harbor and the rest of the boys met up with us on State Street around 8pm.  After a crew dinner, we all retired and got a good night sleep for what was supposed to be a windless event.

Spirits were high in the morning as everyone congregated around their boats on the docks just off Santa Barbara Yacht Club.  Had the chance to catch up with Stu Johnstone and Dr Laura before they got the new J-88 rigged up.  Even caught a glimpse of Dr Laura going up her own mast to do some maintenance. Good to see!

If you are not familiar with the Santa Barbara to King Harbor Race then let me give you a brief.  Start in Santa Barbara, go around Anacapa Island and finish in King Harbor (Redondo Beach).  Simple enough right?  Our game plan was pretty standard.  Head to the island as quickly as possible, gybe down the backside and find a good exit towards the coast.  From there it was to play the game and angles to the finish.

J/125 Timeshaver sailing with J/145We had a decent start and were the highest boat with the Farr 400 just next to us.  We traded off for a bit but then the Farr managed to stay in a puff a bit longer than us and get a little lead.  The wind was light and we were actually catching and keeping up with the TP52’s at one point.  Not a good prospect!

I have a rule about the Code 0, if you think you should put it up you are probably 10 minutes late!  I did not let this happen, as we were the first boat to pull out a Code 0.  Our Code 0 is a brand new design from Bruce Hollis and Ullman Sails.  We used Contender CZ Laminate and have the option for a furler.  The black Code 0 cloth looks mean and just the way I like it!

At this point, we were able to climb away from a lot of our fleet and put some distance on the smaller boats that we owed a lot of time to.  The wind actually started filling in (not in the forecast) and from the correct direction.  We peeled to the 3A and then the 2A as it clocked around a bit more.  Our approach to the island was decent; I would give it a B+, as I would have liked to see us pressing up a bit more with the 3A instead of soaking with the 2A.  The other J-125 Derivative was close behind with the SC-52 Paranoia and our nemesis Horizon also in close proximity.

Tactics took over and we all ended up gybing down the back side of Anacapa Island where things got a little more compact.  We managed to botch a few jibes then get our tack line wrapped around the end of the pole.  Good thing we do not have onboard footage of my language at this point.  All in all it was OK.  We exited with Horizon and Paranoia behind us and Derivative just to leeward.  We had switched to the 1A on the backside and now were ready to jump to the 3A.  The 3A was a little more efficient and we got a little jump away from Horizon.  Did I mention I am sick of seeing them everywhere we go?

Derivative decided to go a little bow up and look for pressure as we stuck to a somewhat bow down mode.  Derivative won this battle and crossed about ¼ mile in front of us at Point Dume.  I could live with that.  What I could not live with was watching the entire fleet that were beyond the horizon at Anacapa Island sail up to us in a puff that obviously filled in from behind.  Oh to be a slower boat!  I watched a boat that rates 60 (we rate -9) sail almost right up to us!  I could hear the talk in the club already….

Sunset was rapidly approaching and we were subject to one of the most amazing sunsets of the year.  What a beautiful sight it was with all the spinnakers glowing in the red sunlight.  We had finally split from Horizon and Derivative and we were about to get the chance to come back together and see who won this battle.  Horizon crossed behind and Derivative just in front.  Ok same same. Their turn to go to the beach and our turn for the ocean.  Back again and we put distance on Horizon and caught up to Derivative.  Not bad so we went out for more.  Lay line for King Harbor was rapidly (in perspective) approaching so we pursued the outside route.  As we came back on port we got our first sense of what happened.  Horizon was further behind but Derivative was still in the same place.

Turning the jetty is always fun as you go from downwind to a tight reach.  Radio Flyer, the J-145, was just in front and we managed to have a better takedown and beat them boat for boat (even though they owed us a chunk of time).  Good move for a morale victory.  After the finish we took sails down and then saw the horror show.  The Viper 640 was about to finish so we knew it was a small boat year.

It is really hard to swallow when you have a great race, put your fleet out the back only then watch them sail up to you in better wind.  I guess that is sailboat racing right?  Congratulations to Derivative for getting this round (just a friendly reminder we have had them the past few times).  It always makes it more fun to sail against the same boat you are on and then finish within a couple minutes.

4th in class and 17th overall (about 90 boats) means we did not fulfill expectations but are still having a great year of racing!!” K-Mag out.    Sailing photo credits- Bronny Daniels/

Giant whale breaching in front of J/160 SALACIA off  Australia's Whitsunday IslandsJ/Cruisers
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/160 SALACIA has been sailing in Australia in the Whitsunday Islands.  Guess who decided to throw themselves across their bow as they cruised comfortably to their next destination?  A giant whale!  Look at this amazing photo!

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.