Wednesday, July 6, 2016

J/Newsletter- July 6th, 2016

J/70s sailing San FranciscoRolex Big Boat Series One-Design Update
(San Francisco, CA)– The early entry deadline is less than one month away for the 52nd Rolex Big Boat Series hosted by St. Francis Yacht Club. Of the 47 boats currently entered to race September 15–18, there is a strong showing of emerging one-design classes including the J/70 Class. Additional one-design classes invited to compete include the J/111s, J/120s and J/105s. The regatta will also conduct starts for boats racing under a variety of rating rules.

“The J/70 Class has become popular because of its ease of use. It’s easy to trailer, easy to launch and requires only a crew of three or four to race,” said Rolex Big Boat Regatta Chair- Susan Ruhne.  Because the J/70 Class World Championship follows this year’s Rolex Big Boat Series by one week, Ruhne expects more of the popular 23-footers to enter.

J/70s sailing Big Boat SeriesChris Kostanecki, owner of the J/70 JENNIFER, has already signed up and expects up to forty J/70s will be on the line at the world-renowned regatta.  “I think this year will be particularly dynamic and exciting,” said Kostanecki. “The J/70 Class is using the Rolex Big Boat Series as a warm-up for Worlds, so all of the top teams should be there.”

Kostanecki says the varied conditions of San Francisco Bay make the regatta a unique challenge. “It’s so much fun; it’s different than any other race,” said Kostanecki. “You’ve got racing along the City front, and the conditions can be gnarly. Sometimes they work against you and sometimes to your advantage, but it’s what makes it such a unique regatta. It’s always one of my favorites of the year.”

All J/Boat owners are encouraged to enter by the August 1 early entry deadline. Entries received after August 1 will be subject to a late entry fee. For more information, please visit the Rolex Big Boat Series website.  For more Rolex Big Boat Series sailing information

J/105s sailing San DiegoJ/105 Lipton Cup Announcement
(San Diego, CA)- Since 1903, the Lipton Cup has been the most prestigious trophy contested in Southern California and one of the most coveted on the West Coast. The event places America’s best yacht clubs to compete against one another using evenly-matched J/105 class one-design sailboats.  The 2016 edition on October 28-30 brings together 12 teams from California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, and New York; those clubs include from the West Coast (California YC, Coronado YC, Kaneohe YC, Long Beach YC, Newport Harbor YC, San Diego YC, San Francisco YC, Southwestern YC, and St. Francis YC) and from the East Coast (Eastern YC, Larchmont YC, and New York YC).

The racing will be held in the San Diego Bay in a round robin fleet race format using equalized J/105s provided by San Diego YC and the incredibly gracious owners of the San Diego J/105 fleet.

Host San Diego Yacht Club won last year’s Lipton Cup, but will be pressed by recent winners St. Francis Yacht Club (2014) and California Yacht Club (2012). Eastern Yacht Club (MA), Kaneohe Yacht Club (HI), Larchmont Yacht Club (NY) and New York Yacht Club (NY) will be vying for their first win of the trophy.  For more Lipton Cup sailing information

J/70 Vineyard Vines/ Vineyard Cup RegattaVineyard Cup Preview
(Vineyard Haven, MA)- This year marks the 25th Anniversary of Sail Martha’s Vineyard! The Vineyard Cup, begun 11 years ago, brings in the revenue to afford our programs that have expanded to reach more than 400 kids each year for our summer sailing program alone. The educational offerings have grown as well, with Maritime Studies and scholarships at the high school level and courses, licenses, rowing, films and lectures to serve our youth well into adulthood.

Walter Cronkite was a founder of Sail Martha’s Vineyard, an Honorary Director, and was there to help Sail MV over the years. He attended many a Seafood Buffet and Auction. He was the Honorary Commodore at the first Vineyard Cup, in his yacht ‘Wyntje’. He had always said that Sail MV was a quintessential Martha’s Vineyard organization, home grown and home supported, and that Sail MV was preserving our maritime culture through the education of our children, endowing them with the knowledge and skills for their lifetime.

Helping to support that cause by participating in the Vineyard Cup are several J owners from across the cruising and racing spectrum. In the PHRF Non-Spinnaker Class are two beautiful J/100s- Tom Welch’s ESCAPE from Oak Bluffs and Phil & Rob Hale’s TANGO from Vineyard Haven.  In the PHRF Spinnaker Class is John Ryder’s J/70 AMONINI, two J/105s (Matt & Lisa Schmitt’s HARDTACK & Ed Lobo’s WATERWOLF) and Stephen Besse’s J/120 APRES.  For more Vineyard Cup sailing information

J/70 sailing upwindSail Newport Regatta Preview
(Newport, RI)- One of the biggest one-design regattas held all year long in the famous seaport of Newport, RI is the SAIL NEWPORT Regatta.  Hosted by its Executive Director Brad Read and the army of Sail Newport volunteers, the regatta runs for three days from July 8th to 10th with all sailing taking place in Narragansett Bay.  Three J classes are participating, including J/24s, J/70s and J/88s.

In the J/70 class, there are a number of leading teams that may be just having a “real-time” clinic on “go-fast” all weekend long.  Consider that a combined five J/24 Worlds, three J/22 Worlds, overall & Corinthian winners of J/70 Worlds and at least five Key West winners (J/70, J/111, J/105) along with major offshore races (Stamford Vineyard, Block Island Race, etc) are in the fleet of nine boats!  Who are these players in the world of offshore/ one-design sailing?  None other than John Brim’s RIMETTE, Heather Gregg’s MUSE, Brian Keane’s SAVASANA, Tim Healey’s HELLY HANSEN, Al Terhune’s DAZZLER and Will Welles’ SCAMP! Two women’s skippers will be vying with Heather for top women skipper, Hannah Swett’s USA 311 and Suzy Leech’s JUNKANOO. In addition, Dave Franzel’s SPRING and Gordon Fletcher’s GIJIMA will keep everyone honest!

In the J/24s, another women skipper hopes to make her mark on the proceedings!  Erica Beck Spencer’s crew on SEA BAGS WOMEN’S SAILING TEAM will hope to replicate some of their top performances, like winning the Marblehead NOOD Regatta J/24 class.  Rob Lambert’s BARFLY will be one of the featured crews in the leaderboard.

Finally, the J/88s are dialing up their activities this summer in Newport.  While next week is New York YC’s Race Week, representing the J/88s New England Championship, a number of crews are racing this weekend as part of that warm-up.  Key West Winners, Mike Bruno’s WINGS, will be up against an ever faster, smarter crew on Doug McKeige’s JAZZ and also Doug Newhouse’s YONDER.  For more Sail Newport Regatta sailing information

J/42 sailing Pacific CupPacific Cup Race Preview
(San Francisco, CA)- The "FUN Race to Hawaii" runs every even year from San Francisco to Hawaii.  Started in 1980, the race has been enjoyed by thousands of racers sailing well over a million miles in total.  The 2016 Pacific Cup will start the week of July 11, 2016, and includes well-prepared boats that race to the warm, welcoming shores of Kaneohe Bay, Oahu.

Before the race, participants attend safety and preparation seminars and social events including the very popular Bon Voyage party the weekend of July 9.  Of course, the accent is on preparation.  In addition to seminars, the race organizers maintain an online repository, a "knowledge-base" of information, about ocean racing in general and the Pacific Cup, in particular.  This information is available without charge to any ocean voyager, whether cruising, TransPac, Coastal Cup, or other race.

Underway, after a challenging reach down the coast to find the best weather, participants will turn toward Hawaii, for day after day of incredible downwind sailing, culminating in the thrilling Tradewinds, with steady, firm breezes driving them toward the finish.

After seven to fourteen days (depending on the size and speed of boat), the finish is off the windy north coast of Oahu, near Kaneohe Bay.  The members of Kaneohe YC mount an incredible welcoming effort, starting with a finish line committee and escort boat to bring the tired crews to the KYC harbor.  The "Leis and Trays" committee greets each arrival with wearable and consumable tokens of welcome to these friendly islands.

J/35 sailing Pacific CupAfter the finish, the boats are all provided with a mandatory social calendar provided by Kaneohe YC members, that includes parties and just lounging by the pool, in the bar, or in the "Long House" sharing stories and waiting for the next boat to arrive.  Near the end of the week, the evenings light up with a spectacular “luau”, followed by a Mount Gay party the next evening, and culminating with the awards party and the handing out of trophies.  Many participants in the past have said it takes yet another week to recover not from the race, but from the post-race social festivities!

Who in the J/Tribe are going this year?  A number of fast, well-sailed, well-prepared boats, that’s for sure!  Sailing in the Weems & Plath Division B are Ray Sanborn’s J/109 ALOHA from Kaneohe YC in Hawaii; Karl Haflinger’s J/35 SHEARWATER from Corinthian YC Tacoma in Washington; Scott Dickinson’s J/42 TIKI J from Coyote Point YC in San Mateo, CA; Tom Keffer’s J/42 VELOCITY from Portland YC in Hood River, OR; and Bill Williams’ J/44 VIAJANTE from Richmond YC in San Francisco, CA.

Cruising fast towards the beautiful islands in the Pasha Hawaii ORR Division D will be Graham Ellis’ J/124 ALBION from Encinal YC in Alameda, CA and Scott Campbell’s famous J/46 RIVA from Portland YC in Portland, OR.  For more Pacific Cup Race sailing information

J/105s sailing offshoreWhidbey Island Preview
(Whidbey Island, WA)- In the northwestern parts of America, adult sailors from Seattle northward look forward to what amounts to a real vacation sailing in some of the nicest parts of the islands north of the famous Puget Sound.  For many, it’s called Whidbey Island Race Week, but is also known as an “R&R” week for those escaping the pressures of working for the likes of Microsoft and Boeing- a form of an “adult sailing camp”.  A time to blow-off steam, a time to reflect, a time to socialize and enjoy friends and family in spectacular setting- fragrant pines, gentle breezes, snow-capped mountains in the distance, brats and burgers on the barbie with refreshingly cold locally made craft beers.  For those reasons and more, that is why “the Whidbey” attracts scores of sailors annually, for decades.

Running from July 11th to 15th, there is a veritable J/Navy participating in this fun-loving event.  There is a one-design class of J/105s and a fleet of PHRF handicap racers.  In the thirteen boat J/105 class, by far the largest in the regatta, many of the top dogs in the PNW are sailing, including Jerry Diercks’ DELIRIUM, Jim Geros’ LAST TANGO, Bob Blaylock’s USAWI, and John Weil & Kent Sisk’s TROUBLEMAKER.

In the world of PHRF handicap sailing, there are “symmetrical” and “asymmetrical” divisions.  Interesting.  In short, the older J/classics sailing in the 28-boat PHRF Sym are Jim McAlpine’s J/24 LUCKY JIM, two J/29s (Pat Denny’s HERE & NOW and Nelson & Johnson’s SLICK), two J/30s (Rex DuPuis’ GADZOOKS and Adrien Felon’s CONRAD J), and Tim DuMontier’s J/100 BRILLIANT.

Many of the usual local suspects are sailing in PHRF Asym class, a cast of characters to be sure.  Such crews include Chris Johnson’s J/120 WITH GRACE, Tom Kelly’s J/122 ANAM CARA, Ed Pinkham’s J/109 JEOPARDY, and one of the rare J/90s- David & Vernice Cohen’s EYE & EYE.  Here is a nice Whidbey Island Race Week promo sailing video, featuring the J/105 class and others.  For more Whidbey Island Race Week sailing information

J/109 sailboatJ/109 North Americans Preview
(Newport, RI)- From July 12th to 16th, the New York YC will be hosting the J/109 North American Championship for a fleet of nineteen teams.  As one of the highest turnouts in recent years, the J/109 fleet is enjoying resurgence in class activity, a tribute to the boat’s versatility as a family cruiser-racer.  How can you argue with a massive stand-up shower and head and a full-blown navigation station to house all those toys of the trade- Microsoft Xbox and huge 24” LED HD screens for playing Minecraft, Game of Thrones and the regular nav-stuff.  Plus, there is a “play-pen” in the bow.  While most of the electronics is focused on “family activities”, it really is time to get down to serious business to determine who has the fastest 35 ft sailing playpen on the planet.

There are many familiar actors in this Shakespearean drama.  Most of the class leaders from the past decade are still having fun; many are North American, East Coast, and Long Island Champions.  The cast of characters include such teams as Carl Olsson’s MORNING GLORY, Don Filippelli’s CAMINOS, Ted Herlihy’s GUT FEELING, Dave Rosow’s LOKI, Adrian Begley’s MAD DOGS & ENGLISHMEN, Bob Schwartz’s NORDLYS, Bill Sweetser’s RUSH, Jim Vos’ SKOOT, Jack Forehand’s STRATEGERY, Doug Evans’ TIMEOUT, Brooke Mastrorio’s URSA, and Bill Kneller’s VENTO SOLARE.  Virtually all of these teams have won some big event over the course of time, so handicapping them for a leaderboard is pretty much out of the question- should be fun racing!  For more J/109 North American Championship sailing information

J/88 sailing upwindNew York YC Race Week Preview
(Newport, RI)- The second-half of the New York Yacht Club Race Week is focused on one-design classes and IRC/ ORC offshore handicap classes.  The primary one-design events are the J/105s participating in the second part of their New England Series as well as the J/88s doing the same after their Long Island Sound series (AYC Spring Series and Cedar Pt One-design Regatta).

While the NYYC Race Week features sailing for “Classics” in the first part along with a fleet of Gunboat catamarans, the second part is intensely focused on a combination of “round-the-buoys” and “random-leg” racing.  In the IRC 3 Class, we find an amazing mixture of J/crews on designs that range from 1983 to 2010- J/35s to J/44s to J/111s!  It will be an interesting, eclectic regatta based on weather conditions.  Starting from the most recent lines off the J/design team, we find Sedgwick Ward’s J/111 BRAVO up against two J/44s (Jim Bishop’s GOLD DIGGER & Bill Ketcham’s MAXINE) and the NYYC Annual Regatta Round Jamestown Island Overall Winner- Tom Sutton’s J/35 LEADING EDGE from Houston, TX!  Also, in the ORC Club Spinnaker handicap world is Tom Wacker’s J/105 TRADING PLACES.

From a one-design perspective, the J/105s are fielding a strong fleet, with past J/105 North American Champion and Rolex Big Boat Series Champion Bruce Stone & Nicole Breault’s GOOD TRADE potentially leading the fleet. However, they will be heavily contested at every start and every corner of the race course by Mark Lindquist’s STERLING, Fred Darlington’s TONTO, Mark Masur’s TWO FEATHERS from Fort Worth Boat Club, and Jonah Israelit’s PIECES OF EIGHT.

Similarly, the J/88s will see spirited competition from an incredibly talented suite of sailors.  In no particular order, since they are all potential teams that could occupy the podium, are Iris Vogel’s DEVIATION, Jeff Johnstone’s ELECTRA, Doug McKeige’s JAZZ, Mike Bruno’s WINGS, and Doug Newhouse’s YONDER! Sailing photo credits- Sharon Green/  For more New York YC Race Week sailing information.

J/120 racingJ/120 Nationals Update
(Detroit, MI)- As many J/Sailors know, the J/120 fleet in the greater Detroit region in the Great Lakes is one of a kind.  They regularly get twelve boats on the line every Wednesday and Saturday for level racing in the Detroit River Yachting Association events.

It is a talented and competitive group of skippers and crew. What the Detroit J/120 sailors are doing with their boats may be one of the best one-design keelboat sailing groups in the country. For example, their last “beer can” evening race had eleven boats competing with the top 3 finishing within 30 seconds of one another after a 7.0nm random leg buoy course.  Friends at Bayview YC and Grosse Pointe YC would be more than happy to introduce you to their incredibly laid-back form of sailing with family and friends.  Learn more here & join the J/120 cruiser/ racers here.

J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

For sailors in Europe, last week was a busy one with events taking place across the Continent as well as in the United Kingdom.  For starters, there was an incredibly competitive J/80 Worlds at Sotogrande, Spain, sailing in the waters off Barcelona.  Even more J/80s were sailing the Pornic Cup in Pornic, France- part of the Coupe de France Series.  Up north, the J/24s and J/80s also completed their participation in the famous Kieler Woche regatta held off Kiel, Germany.  Then, still further north was more J/80 fleet sailing activity; this one took the form of the Women’s International Match Race Series sailed off Helsinki, Finland in a fleet of matched J/80s using symmetrical chutes on spinnaker poles. Finally, across the English Channel, the JP Morgan Round Island Race took place off the famous Royal Yacht Squadron starting line off Cowes- sending the fleet on a 60nm race that would go into the records books- roaring tides and epic winds in the 20-30 kts plus range made for some fast rides, a few sinkings, a few broken rigs and lots of shredded dacron, nylon and carbon fiber sails!

Over in the Americas, we get an update on the start of the Vic-Maui Race— a J/109 entered in the doublehanded division is doing quite well in the early stages of the race.  And, on Lake Michigan, the South Shore YC and St Joseph YC hosted their mad-dash across the lake called the Queens Cup Race, a distance of 78.4nm with some great results for various J/teams.

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:

Jul 8- RORC Cowes-Dinard-St Malo Race- Cowes, England
Jul 8-10- Vineyard Cup Regatta- Edgartown, MA
Jul 9-10- Sail Newport Regatta- Newport, RI
Jul 11- Pacific Cup Race- San Francisco, CA
Jul 11-15- Whidbey Island Race Week- Whidbey Island, WA
Jul 12-16- J/109 North American Championship- Newport, RI
Jul 12-16- New York YC Race Week- Newport, RI
Jul 16-18- J/111 European Championship- Hamble, England
July 22-24- J/70 Great Lakes Championship– Youngstown, NY
Jul 22-24- J/70 Pacific Coast Championship- San Francisco, CA
Jul 27-31- Travemunde Race Week- Travemunde, Germany
Jul 28-31- Marblehead NOOD Regatta- Marblehead, MA
Aug 1-4- J/111 World Championship- Cowes, England
Aug 4-7- J/80 North American Championship- Toronto, ONT, Canada
Aug 5-7- J/27 North American Championship- Oakville, ONT, Canada
Aug 6-13- AAM Cowes Week Regatta- Cowes, IOW, England
Aug 134-14- J/FEST New England- Bristol, RI
Aug 13-19- J/24 European Championship- Plymouth, England
Aug 14-20- Women's J/70 World Keelboat Championship- Rye, NY
Aug 19-25- J/22 World Championship- Kingston, ONT, Canada

J/70 Events:
Jul 22-24- J/70 Great Lakes Championship– Youngstown, NY
Jul 22-24- J/70 Pacific Coast Championship- San Francisco, CA
Sep 15-18- J/70 Rolex Big Boat Series/ Pre-Worlds- San Francisco, CA
Sep 24-Oct 1- J/70 World Championship- San Francisco, CA

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

J80 world championship off Sotogrande, SpainTabares Three-Peats J/80 Worlds
French COURRIER JUNIOR Team takes Silver
(Sotogrande, Spain)- The Spanish skipper, Rayco Tabares and the HOTEL PRINCESS YAIZA TEAM won the J/80 Marina Sotogrande World Championship and became the only crew to win the triple crown of the J/80 class! The top French team that had been leading the regatta from the first day, Erik Brezellec’s COURRIER JUNIOR, finished second.  Then, another past two-time J/80 World Champion, Ignacio Camino’s Barcelona-based crew on BNFit took the third podium position.

For the finale, the Race Committee had to wait a couple of hours in order to have wind conditions stable enough to start a race that would decide the World Championship. There was a lot of tension and premature starts that did not affect the French crew on COURRIER JUNIOR, or the Spanish (Canary Island’s crew) on PRINCESS YAIZA, who both sailed flawlessly.

J/80 World ChampionshipRight after the start of the last race, PRINCESS YAIZA was leading the front group off the starting line, sailing their own race. Meanwhile, the regatta leader, COURRIER JUNIOR, was fighting hard after a bad start to stay in front of the second big pack of boats off the starting line. In the end, it was Tabares’ team managed to secure a 3rd place in the final race and were watching with tremendous anxiety how the finishes would end up behind them.  In a large clump of boats coming into the finish line was Brezellec’s COURRIER JUNIOR.  However, it was not to be a triumphant finish for the embattled French crew.  With seemingly the World Championship waiting on a silver platter for them to take home to France, their chances slipped away in the waning few meters in the final race, taking 10th and losing victory by just two points!  Clearly, Brezellec’s crew was disappointed.  Conversely, it was pandemonium for Tabares’ crew.

Commented Tabares after arriving to shore, “Since yesterday, looking at the scores, we knew it was very difficult to win; the French crew on COURRIER JUNIOR were very fast and to get six boats between us was going to be complicated. The only way to win was to sail our own race. We were very nervous in the last downwind leg, because if they finished seventh, they would beat us, but it was a superb finish. We are very, very happy to have achieved our third world title!”

Tabares writes a new page in the history of the International J/80 class as the first skipper to win three world titles in this hotly contested class. “To take the “triple crown” is an honor; this class is very difficult and the fleet is very competitive. For now, we are the only team to achieve a triple crown, but for sure we won’t be the only ones, but I also hope to increase it!” said Tabares.

Behind Tabares and Brezellec were Ignacio Camino in third, Eivind Melleby’s Norwegian team HIGH SEAS in fourth and Marc De Antonio’s BRIBON—MOVISTAR (the 2015 J/80 World Champion) in fifth.  For more J/80 World Championship sailing information

J/109 sailing Round Island RaceJ/Crews Sweep Epic Round Island Race
(Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- Nervous anticipation was building a couple of days before the race, with a forecast of 20 to 30 kts of breeze from the west, the fleet of 1,000+ sailboats that range from twin-keel 21 foot “mudders” to state-of-the-art 100 footers and insanely fast MOD 70 trimarans all knew they were going to have their hands full round the back (southern side) of the infamous Isle of Wight.  The race track is simple- start at dawn (or thereabouts), head west out past the famous Needles Lighthouse, turn left around St Catherine’s Point, sail eastward to Bembridge Ledge, left around the Forts and back west up the Solent to the finish- a quick’n’easy 60nm race for most of the J/Tribe.

J/111 sailing Round Island RaceThe morning came and the forecast was true, holding steady at 27kts, still windy but it all seemed manageable for most crews. Getting out toward the Bramble Banks in the western approaches to the Solent, things were starting to hot up a bit, wind against tide made for square-walled 5 to 8 foot waves with boats pounding themselves to pieces in the tough conditions.  After passing the dangerous Needles Lighthouse, the fleet took off on a fast reach, most under jibs and reefed mains.  However, the big tactical consideration was when to pop the kite approaching the first turning point downwind at St Catherine’s Point.  Some did, most did not.  Those who did pop kites, took off like a rifle-shot in 25-30 kts breezes, hauling the mail down the backside of the Isle of Wight, with many crews experiencing some of the most amazing planing rides in their lifetimes on a brilliant, sunny day!  After rounding the Forts/ Bembridge Ledge at the eastern end of the Solent, it was a beat against the tide up the beaches off the Ryde Sands in flat water to the finish line off the Royal Yacht Squadron.

Round Island fleetFor many J/Teams, it was one of the most memorable Round Island Races ever.  Big breeze, big waves, uphill, downhill, and long, planing sleigh-rides made for simply spectacular conditions.  In such scenarios, the J’s excelled, sweeping several divisions in the process.  For starters, the IRC Division 1A saw a complete domination by J’s, with J/111s sweeping the podium, only to be joined by two J/133s to complete the top five!  Winning was JELVIS (Martin Dent), followed by JITTERBUG (Cornell Riklin), JOURNEYMAKER II (Chris Jones & Louise Makin), the J/133 ASSARAIN IV (Angus Bates) and the J/133 BLACKJACK (Eric Gicquel from France).  JELVIS completed the course in 6:12:26, surely to be a record to stand for a long time for a 36 ft cruiser-racer!

Similarly, the J/11S SYNERJ (Ian Wilson) won her class in IRC Division 1B by over 5 minutes. Her sistership, the J/11S SLEEPER (Jonty Layfield) placed sixth in IRC Division 1C.

J/133 Pintia sailing the JP Morgan Round Island RaceWith such conditions lending themselves to planing hull designs, it was amazing to see the J/35 KNIGHT BUILD LTD take 2nd in IRC Division 2A ahead of a raft of J/109s hot on their heels.  The J/109s took fourth (DIAMOND JEM- Robert Stiles) and fifth (BOO- Neil Mcgrigor).

Perhaps the most remarkable performance by any class/ brand of boats were the J/105s and J/109s in IRC Division 2B.  Of the top 31 boats, 24 were J/crews.  Plus, it was nearly a clean sweep of the top ten- J’s were the top six teams and nine of the top ten!  Winning in such heavy weather conditions were the J/105s, taking the first four positions- JELLY BABY (Bill Newton), JIN TONIC (Roberts/Edgerley), NEILSON REDEYE (Neilson Holidays/ Peter Tyler), JESTER (David Cowell).  Fifth was the J/109 BOTEZ COAT IV (Yves Dervieux).

J/88 sailing JP Morgan Round Island RacePerhaps the stunner of the entire race was the performance of the J/95 in IRC Division 2D.  The J/95 is a shoal-draft, twin-rudder, wheel-driven boat, focused on basic day-sailing in coastal waters.  So!?  One might ask.  Well, JUST IS (Graham Chase) smoked all kinds of daysailers and coastal cruisers to take tenth in her class.  Ahead of her was the J/92 JABBERWOCK (Ralph Mason) in 3rd, the J/97s ALAMARA B III (Ole Bettum) in 5th, BLACKJACK II (Andy Howe) in 6th and MAB AVEL (Herve Devand/ St Malo, France) in 8th.  Behind them were the J/97 JET in 11th and the J/92S WIZARD in 12th.

A somewhat similar scenario played out in IRC Division 3A.  Three J/92s occupied the top of the class, with J’RONIMO (Libby Greenhalgh) in 3rd, WILDEBEEST V (Craig Latimer) in 4th and JACKDAW (Rob Salter) in 6th.

In the world of one-designs, the J/80s had a scream.  Winning their dozen boat division was Chris Body’s MOCKINGJAY, with Chris & Hannah Neve’s NO REGRETS 2nd, Amber Brown’s SEAFIRE 3rd, Andrew Hurst’s FIDUCIAL 4th and Robert “Wally” Walters’ WILD WALLY 5th.

For the overall “J/Boats Trophy”, the top three boats were Martin Dent’s J/111 JELVIS, Bill Newton’s J/105 JELLY BABY and Roberts/Edgerley’s J/105 JIN TONIC.   Sailing photo credits- Paul Wyeth   For more JP Morgan Round the Island Race

J/80 sailingSambron Victorious @ J/80 Pornic Cup
(Pornic, France)- Twenty boats were treated to beautiful, easy-to-sail weather conditions all weekend long off Pornic, France.  When the weather is nice in Normandy, it’s quite simply gorgeous and on the first day of racing the 10-12 kts of breeze provided extremely close racing.  After four windward-leeward races, the top four boats were only separated by two points- with JOLINE, EJP, J-FEED and NUMERO-J trading off occupying most of the podium spots in each race.

The same four teams continued to do battle on Sunday, but only two races were run in the force-5 winds.  At the conclusion of racing on Sunday afternoon, the leaderboard flip-flopped completely, with some leaders taking a nose-dive and others climbing to the top.  Winning was Laurent Sambron’s EJP TEN, with Remi Rabbe’s CNP AKAJOULE in 2nd, Alex Cottron’s APCC YOUNG GEOLEAN Team in 3rd, Ludovic Vest’s NUMBER-J in 4th and Francois-Xavier Drogou’s FEED-J in 5th.  For more J/80 Pornic Cup sailing information

J/88 sailing under spinnakerQueens Cup Race J/Crew Domination
(Milwaukee, WI)- The South Shore YC on the southern part of the Milwaukee Harbor breakwaters hosts their ever-popular Queens Cup Race, a mad-dash straight across Lake Michigan to St Joseph, MI of exactly 78.4nm at a heading of approximately 131 degrees.  It could not be a simpler race course- from the starting line, sail straight and finish just offshore of the Michigan shoreline.  However, therein lies the sheer maddening insanity of the race itself; the race is never what it appears and the weather forecasts for it always seem to be wrong, not by a little, but by a LOT!  A classic enigma for most race navigators, but that is what keeps crews coming back for more each year.  This year’s race was a test of skill, patience, and endurance- imagine that a TP52 takes over 15 hours to sail 78.4nm?? That’s an average speed of 5.2 kts- OMG how painful.

Nevertheless, no matter how good or bad the sailing is across the lake, the event is famously notable for the enormous parties at the start and end of the race.  For starters, South Shore YC throws down the red carpet treatment, so to speak, for sailors on Thursday with their famous Pig & Chicken Roast.  That’s accompanied by music & dancing featuring “Generation Z”, whatever that means!?  Then, on the far end after the race, the St. Joseph River YC (now located in the Historic Light House Depot) hosts an even better party at the conclusions of the race (at least, that is their claim!).

This year’s Queens Cup Race had a great turnout for J/105 one-design class and J’s sailing in the PHRF handicap classes.

In PHRF 8 Division, Ben Wilson’s J/88 RAMBLER crushed their class, proving yet again that a J/88 on the Great Lakes is a weapon of mass destruction, especially on any reaching point of sail.  Taking third was Ron Otto’s J/110 TAKEDOWN 2.

In PHRF 6 Division, Larry Schell’s J/35 TOUCH OF GREY walked off with the bronze in their class.

The J/111s, yet again, had a field day in PHRF 4 Division, with Richard Hobbs’ HOBGOBLIN taking 1st, followed by Tom Roop’s KASHMIR in 4th and Mark Caliban’s NO QUARTER in 7th.  In 8th place was Fran Giampoli’s J/120 JAHAZI.

In PHRF 3 Division, Bob McManus’ J/130 EDGE placed 4th in class and Jim Richter’s J/44 CHEEP’N’DEEP II took 7th place.

The big boats in PHRF 2 Division saw the mighty J/145 MAIN STREET sailed by Bill Schanen and their family crew win class! The Schanen family are well-known in the Midwest for being the publishers of the popular large format magazine- SAILING! They were followed by one of their colleagues, Bob Klairmont’s J/133 SIROCCO 3 in second place.

In the eight boat J/105 class, Mark Gurney’s BUZZ won class by over ten minutes elapsed, followed by Stuart Boekeloo’s ATTITUDE in second, Mark Stoll’s PEREGRINE in third, Jon Weglarz’s THE ASYLUM in 4th and Mike Ludtke’s SMOKIN’J in 5th.  For more Queens Cup Race sailing information

J/24s sailing off AustraliaKiel Week Fun For J/24s & J/80s
(Kiel, Germany)- The world’s largest sailing regatta, Kieler Woche hosted by Kiel Yacht Club, not only played host to the nearly 100 J/70’s sailing their European Championship, but it also hosted the Open German National Championships for both the J/24s and J/80s later in the week.

The twenty-five J/24s from Sweden, Germany, Monaco and the United Kingdom enjoyed great racing over four days of racing, despite the somewhat stormy conditions that befell them at the beginning of the regatta.  In the end, it was Tobias Feuerherdt’s TEAM ROTOMAN crew (Jan-Marc ULRICH, Lukas FEUERHERDT, Justus Fritz Kellner & Tobias PETERS,) that won the regatta after eleven races were sailed, with just nine counting (two races could be discarded).  As a result, Feuerherdt counted all top three finishes- 1-2-1-3-2-3-1-1-1 for a total of 15 pts net!  Taking second was the American skipper Travis Odenbach sailing with a British crew on HITCHHIKER (Andrew TAYLOR, Iain STRINGER, Paul WILLIAMS, & Izzy SAVAGE), posting all top seven scores to take the silver with 26 pts net.  Third was Stefan Karsunke’s German crew on SULLBERG (Tim HABEKOST, Carsten KERSCHIES, Christian CARSTENS, & Malte GIBBE) with all top ten finishes for 35 pts net.  The top Swedish team was Per-Hakan Persson’s crew sailing FRONT RUNNER in sixth place with 47 pts.

After just nine races with one discard, the nineteen J/80s from Germany and Denmark were treated to a virtual eclipse provided by fellow countryman Martin Menzner; his Kieler YC crew on PIKE (Mika ROLFS, Frank LICHTE, & Nils BELTERMANN) posted all 1sts and 2nds to with just 10 pts net!  Behind Menzner’s team is was a much closer battle for the silver.  After nine races, it was a close battle between Soren Hadeler’s THE BEAST IS BACK crew (Guido UNGER, Ole WINTERBERG, & Nils WINTERBERG) and Hauke Kruss’s TAK FOR TUREN team (Ole SARTORI, Marco STANISCHEWSKI, & Jens TSCHENTSCHER), with Hadeler counting all top four finishes to take the silver with 20 pts net over Kruss’s team with 29 pts net. For more Kiel Week sailing information

J/109 sailing Vic-Maui RaceVic-Maui Race Update
(Victoria, BC, Canada)- The biennial Vic-Maui Race ha started and the fleet of forty boats are heading out on a 2,308nm journey across the Pacific to the beautiful island of Maui.  Hosted by the Royal Vancouver YC and Lahaina YC, the fleet started off Victoria Harbor in British Columbia.  The fleet is now sailing northwest out the Straits of Juan de Fuca.

The time allowances for the fleet are calculated from the ORC velocity prediction program, the Vic-Maui Weather Matrix, and a course length of 2,308 nautical miles.  This will result in a single time allowance for each boat for use in the 2016 Vic-Maui Race.

Picking up immediately where he left off after winning ORC Division I in the Swiftsure Lightship Class is Reed Bernhard’s J/109 MOUNTAIN from Sloop Tavern YC in Seattle, WA.  Reed is racing the Double-handed Class and as of Saturday at 1800 hrs EST, they are leading both their Class overall as well as the entire ORC fleet overall! In fact, they are currently first boat-for-boat!  You can check in and following them on YellowBrick Tracker “live” for the next 10-14 days!  For more Vic-Maui Race sailing information

J/80 match raceSweden’s Östling Conquers J/80 Women Match Race Helsinki
(Helsinki, Finland)– The first event of the 2016 Women’s International Match Racing Series (WIM Series) was hosted by Nyländska Jaktklubben (NJK) – the yacht club that brought the exciting sailing discipline of match racing to Finland 25 years ago. The women sailed matched J/80s using symmetric spinnakers and poles.  The teams came from Finland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, France, Netherlands and Ireland.

Former World Champion (2014) Anna Östling of Sweden ruled the Finnish waters when the Helsinki Women’s Match rounded up Friday. Winning this opening event of the 2016 WIM Series, also takes her to the top of the Series’ leader board: “It was so nice. We felt absolutely unstoppable today,” the Swedish skipper says with a broad smile, praising her crew Malin Källström, Marie Berg and Annika Carlunger.

The final day of the Helsinki Women’s Match, the opening event of the 2016 Women’s International Match Racing Series, started off in the morning with some sunshine in-between the clouds, but flat water and very little breeze off Hernesaari (Ärtholmen).

As winner of the round-robin, Dutch match-racing ace Renée Groeneveld picked Pauline Courtois (FRA) as her semifinal opponent, a choice Groeneveld may have regret later. In a very exciting semifinal series, which went all the way to five thrilling matches, the French skipper finally secured her first spot ever in a WIM Series event final: “Obviously we found a speed advantage against Renée, who was a little bit slower,” Courtois analyses.

“Boat speed was the key today, and unfortunately we didn’t have much of it,” sighs Groeneveld, not happy at all with her semifinal result.

Scandinavian sparring partners World #1 Camilla Ulrikkeholm Klinkby (DEN) and Anna Östling fought each other in the second semi final, won by the latter 3 – 1: “We had a slightly poor starting sequence against Camilla in the third match, but except for that we sailed just fine,” the Swede says.

“Some small mistakes in tactics and boat handling ruined our day. In this competition you can never afford even the smallest mistakes,” Ulrikkeholm Klinkby reflects.

Due to lack of wind and time, the Race Committee had to shorten the final and the petit final to “first scoring 2 points” instead of the “first scoring 3 points” that was initially scheduled. Immediately after that call, a little more pressure filled in over the racecourse, allowing fair racing, but still in rather light conditions under a bright sun from a clear blue sky.

In the final Östling took command already in the pre-start duels, controlling her French opponent as they both struggled to get the advantageous starting position. In the second race, the Swede even forced Courtois to a premature start. When Courtois had turned around the leeward buoy and back over the starting line, very slowly in the light wind, Östling was already a couple of boat lengths up the first beat, and with good speed ahead.

The Swedes won second final match triumph with apparent ease, the victory in the Helsinki Women’s Match also puts them in the top spot of the 2016 WIM Series leader board:  “Such a great feeling! Everything fell into place and we had perfect flow in the boat. We’ve done everything better each day, exactly according to plan. To be the best crew on the last day is what counts,” Anna Östling said grinning from ear to ear.

“We really didn’t expect anything, but I’m very disappointed on our pre-starts in the final matches. My feeling is that we never gave it a chance. But on the other hand, we never gave up either,” Pauline Courtois explains.

Renée Groeneveld from the Netherlands defeated Camilla Ulrikkeholm Klinkby from Denmark 2 – 0 to finish on the podium.  For more Women’s International Match Race Series sailing information

What friends, alumni and crew of J/Boats are doing worldwide
*  J/160 PIPE DREAM- Bermuda CCA Cruising, then Bahamas Bound!  Here is the latest report from the fun-loving crew aboard Dr. Scott Piper’s beautiful J/160 PIPE DREAM:

“Sally Browne flew in as scheduled, joining us at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club. There are 3 teams here training for the "America's Cup" which will be held here next year.  The Japanese "Soft Bank" has one Japanese on board, but we believe is training another; she is skippered by Dean Barker. "Team Oracle" is skippered by Jimmy Spithill, an Australian. Sweden's "Artemis" has two boats here. Soft Bank's chase boat is skippered by Jason's friend from New Zealand, so Jason put our dinghy in the water to watch and schmooze after the practice races. And, as there are no restrictions, later Pipe Dream also got the opportunity to be among the fleet. You will love Mary's video and photos which are attached. What an exciting opportunity to be so close!

The CCA Cruise literally circled Bermuda taking a total of 5 days. There were 11 boats, and approximately 44 people mostly from the Boston and New York yacht clubs, a great group.

Mary loved "the Bermuda shorts outfits" they wear here for dressed up occasions.  Our Bermuda Yacht Club Cruise Chairman, Rear Commodore Stephen Kempe, injured his leg on the 1st day, requiring surgery, so his son Somer Kempe took over, and did a bang-up job, keeping us all literally "in-line". His demeanor, responsibility and organization was amazing. He made his mom and dad proud and kept the 11 boat fleet safe. His experience and local knowledge was an absolute must as the entire south shore is a mine field of coral heads. Some marked with posts but the majority are not. There are no marked channels. We ate ashore every night at interesting and popular taverns.

We cruised to The Dockyards for our reception dinner that was held at "The Commissioner's House" on the veranda of the Bermuda Maritime Museum.

The next day was a tour of the "Casemates Prison".  Monday we sailed to Mangrove Bay and anchored out.  We were transported ashore for cocktails at the home of the Bermuda Station Secretary, Andy and wife Sarah Burnett-Herkes with a rum tasting presentation and history of Gosling’s Rum!  Did you know, Gosling has made special rum for The America's Cup?

Following this, we took a short walk to the Village of Somerset for a pub dinner at the "Country Squire".  Tuesday we sailed to Castle Harbor via the west end and anchored out near NonSuch Island, home of the Cahow bird, where people took a nature tour.  That evening we were transported ashore for dinner at "Tom Moore's Tavern,” the oldest restaurant in Bermuda where a past commodore, Ralph Richardson, serenaded us with trumpet and island songs and sing along.

On Wednesday, we went for hors’de’oeuvres at a beautiful home on Smith Island at a new Bermuda CCA member, husband and wife, Mark Soares and Dr. Annie Pinto for a "Swizzle Party".

We returned to St. George in time for dinner at the "Tempest Bistro". We toured St. George's and visited St. Peter's, the oldest Episcopal Church in the Western Hemisphere.

We ended the cruise back at the Royal Bermuda YC with a farewell dinner. Acknowledgements of appreciation and accolades were heartfelt and well-deserved. The cruise was a big success.

Lloyd and Sally will fly out tomorrow and Georgie and Jason will take a couple of days off to explore Bermuda by motorbikes. Thus, Mary and I will have Pipe Dream to ourselves at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club before we head out for the Bahamas in a couple of days.

J/70 sailing upwind*  Tim Healey’s Tips For When You Need "Height"- There are times where you may find yourself struggling to either keep your upwind lane, or just can’t get that height to pinch off a boat to weather. So what do you do?

First off, speed creates point, so the faster you go, the more lift your keel or centerboard will create to give you better height, point, and VMG. That said, there are still times when you think you are doing it all correctly and still aren’t matching your competitors.

Here are a few “tips” that Tim Healy from North Sails has picked up sailing a variety of boats through the years that he found has helped him. Try one or more of the following tips on your boat next time you are looking for better pointing.

Check your backstay.
Is it pulled on in light air? If so make sure it is loose. Also, check to see if you may have too much pre-bend in the mast. Prebend helps your mainsail match it’s designed shape in lighter air but a mast that is set with a lot of prebend will make for a sail that may end up too flat for your sailing style. Less prebend will make your mast straighter which will make the main deeper and can help create the power needed to point higher so try a slightly straighter mast to push some depth into your main and create a more powerful shape.

Did you pull your outhaul too tight?
Try easing it some to get some depth in the bottom of the main. A “slightly” looser outhaul will add depth to the lower part of the main and create more depth in the back of the sail down low which will add a little “kick” and help with some height. Just be careful not to ease it too much as the sail can get too deep quickly and add a lot of drag. Less than an inch can make a difference..

Where is your traveler set?
Try moving the traveler a little higher on the track and concentrate more on where the end of the boom is and not where the traveler car or block is on the track. Most sloop-rigged boats can sail upwind with the boom on centered, or even a few degrees higher, in light to moderate wind without creating too much drag. Setting the traveler so the end of the boom is as much as a “boom width” above centerline can help balance the boat and make it want to sail closer to the wind.

Are your jib leads too far back?
Sometimes we don’t think of the jib lead position as helping to point higher but it certainly can keep you from pointing higher so making certain that the leads are set far enough forward will make for a fuller jib and can help create the power needed, especially in choppy conditions, to increase forward drive and allow you to sail closer to the wind.

J Cruisers continue their adventures around the world, below are a selection of most excellent "blogs" written by their prolific publishers.  Some terribly amusing anecdotes and pearls of wisdom are contained in their blogs. Read some! You'll love it.

* The J/40 HERON REACH sailed by Virginia and Jerry is participating in the Blue Planet Odyssey project and have recently joined them in the Marquesas Islands in the Eastern Pacific.  Learn more about their adventures and experiences here-
Giant whale breaching in front of J/160 SALACIA off  Australia's Whitsunday Islands* 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 AVATAR headed for the Caribbean, again, for 2015/ 2016!  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 regards their various improvements and refit to the boat (see above).  They will again be based at Proper Yachts in St John, US Virgin Islands.

Bill & Judy Stellin- sailing J/42 Jaywalker* Bill & Judy Stellin were interviewed 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.