Wednesday, September 28, 2016

J/Newsletter- September 28th, 2016

J/112E's gorgeous cruising interior
Annapolis Boat Show- See the J/70, J/88, J/112E
(Annapolis, MD)- J/Boats is looking forward to seeing the Chesapeake/ Mid-Atlantic members of the J/Tribe at the Annapolis Sailboat Show from October 6th to 10th. The J/112E will be making its Annapolis show debut and she will be joining the J/88 family speedster and the world’s fastest growing sportsboat class- the International J/70.

The Famous J/70 Sportsboat- Now 1,100 Boats Strong!! 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. Learn more about the wildly popular J/70 here.  And, take a look at the epic photos of the action taking place at the class’ ALCATEL World Championship taking place in San Francisco.

A natural evolution of its J pedigree, the J/70’s 23 feet of sailing length with high aspect, all carbon rig and deep lifting keel, provides spirited performance and stability that feels like a much larger boat.

J/88 family speedster sailing upwindThe J/88 family speedster has achieved extraordinary performances offshore since launch, including winning her class in the Chicago to Mackinac Race, the Queens Cup Race, the Waukegan Race, the Tri-State Race and the Santa Barbara to King Harbor Race.  Learn more about this “pocket rocket” and why she is both fun to sail one-design racing, but an absolute scream to sail fast in offshore planing conditions in just the 8-10 kts wind!  Learn more about the J/88 family speedster here.

What’s not to LOVE about the new J/112E Sport Cruiser?!  The J/112E is a SAIL Magazine Best Boats Nominee for 2017. Learn more about her nomination here.   Plus, she is also nominated for European Yacht of the Year 2017, the J/112E is the newest addition to the J/Boats “E” Series of versatile performance sailing yachts.  A welcome 36 feet in length, she features a spacious two-cabin accommodation plan and a comfortable, ergonomic cockpit. The J/112E is as well suited for the annual family cruise as she is racing in the local club regatta or short-handing through rough weather. Please visit us in Annapolis to view this gorgeous cruising yacht for the entire family!  For more Annapolis Boat Show information

J/88 sailing fast off San FranciscoJ/88 North Americans Preview
(Rye, NY)- American YC is hosting the inaugural J/88 North American Championship on Western Long Island Sound from September 30th to October 2nd.  The forecast is daunting for the weekend, with breezes offering 20-30 kts from the northeast, making for a choppy, breezy start for the sailors hoping to sail fast on the Sound.

The previous weekend at the American YC Fall Series served as a good “practice regatta”.  Showing good form all weekend was John Pearson’s RED SKY, winning the weekend by taking three bullets.  Ken & Drew Hall’s NEVERMORE just squeaked out a second place over Doug McKeige’s JAZZ.  Based on the weekend’s results, it was clear it was very tight racing overall.  Past regatta winners like Iris Vogel’s DEVIATION, Doug Newhouses’ YONDER, Mike Bruno’s WINGS and Kevin Marks’ VELOCITY all posted top three finishes in their records in the five race series.  After that warm-up, it will be interesting to see who pops onto the top of the leaderboard after three days of racing.  Sailing photo credits- Sharon Green/ Ultimate Sailing.  For more J/88 North American Championship sailing information

J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

It has been a gorgeous final week of sailing in September in a number of venues around the world.  Currently taking place is the ALCATEL J/70 Worlds in San Francisco, CA, hosted by St Francis YC with the fleet being treated to epic San Francisco Bay conditions!  Last weekend, the amazingly popular J/30 continues to enjoy great sailing with a resurgent fleet in the Chesapeake Bay area having nineteen boats partake in their J/30 North American Championship in Eastport, MD at Eastport YC.

Meanwhile, halfway around the world, the J/24 World Championship saw 42 boats sail a shifty, light airs regatta; an event hosted by the Wakayama Sailing Club in Wakayama, Japan.

Over in Europe, the fantastically fun SAILING Champions League finale was sailed off Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy on J/70s and hosted by the gorgeous YC Costa Smeralda for 28 of Europe’s “best sailing clubs” from 19 member countries.  Meanwhile, two J/111s sailed the 700nm+ Palermo to Monaco race, hosted by YC Monaco and YC Palermo.  The race ran from Palermo, Sicily, Italy to the finish line off Monte Carlo’s Hercules Harbor in Monaco.  The J/111s sailed both ORR 2 and ORR Doublehanded classes.

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:

Sep 24-Oct 1- J/70 World Championship- San Francisco, CA
Sep 24-25- American YC Fall Series- Rye, NY
Oct 1-2- J/88 North American Championship- Rye, NY
Oct 1-2- J/22 East Coast Championship- Annapolis, MD
Oct 7-8- San Diego to Ensenada Race- San Diego, CA
Oct 7-9- US Match Racing Championship (J22)- San Diego, CA
Oct 12-15- US Adult Sailing Championship (J22)- San Diego, CA
Oct 15-16- Cleveland (216) Regatta- Cleveland, OH
Oct 20-23- J/70 Corinthian Nationals- Annapolis, MD
Oct 20-23- J/105 North American Championship- Larchmont, NY
Oct 21-23- J/105 Masters Regatta- San Diego, CA
Oct 28-30- J/105 Lipton Cup- San Diego, CA
Oct 28-30- J/Fest Southwest Regatta- Seabrook, TX
Oct 29-Nov 1- French J/80 Nationals- Pornichet, France

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

J/70s sailing off start at Worlds in San FranciscoThe ALCATEL J/70 World Championship Update
(San Francisco, CA)- World Championship regattas always generate high-level competition, but when you stack 68 of the world’s most popular One Design boats on San Francisco Bay in a crisp, late-September breezes, you can bet your last shackle that the competition will be ferocious. Such was the case at the start of the 2016 Alcatel J/70 Worlds, hosted by St. Francis Yacht Club, as the fleet of top-shelf competitors experienced classic early fall conditions that tested racers’ big-fleet skills.

Day One
“You’re not going to win the regatta in the first race but you could lose it,” said Paul Cayard, a Volvo Ocean Race winner, who is serving as tactician aboard Carlo Alberini’s Calvi Network. “[At first] you’re just trying to get a couple of good races in. [Then], as the regatta proceeds…you may [eventually] have to start making a more aggressive game plan.”

J/70s sailing Worlds in San Francisco BayWhile the morning started with a one-hour shoreside postponement to allow the sea breeze to fill in on the Berkeley Circle racecourse, everyone clearly had first blood in mind once the starting guns began sounding in 15-18 knots of wind, with puffs in the low 20s. There were two general recalls before the Race Committee added the motivation of a black flag: Cross the line early and disqualification is mandatory.

The bulk of the fleet concentrated on the right side of the line, a move that suited skipper Chris Kostanecki and his crew aboard Jennifer (USA 370) just fine, as Kostanecki split with the herd and aimed left, finding clear lanes. As boats to the right-hand side of the course battled for scraps, Jennifer enjoyed a fast ride to the windward mark, which they rounded first, creating a commanding lead that they carried across the finish.

“We nailed the start,” said Kostanecki, three minutes after crossing the line in this talent-rife class, which includes former J/70 World Champions Tim Healy (2014) and Julian Fernandez Neckelmann (2015), as well as former America’s Cup winners and Olympic champions. “The weather end of the line was favored, and we went left. It was our game plan and we [stuck with] it.”

Unfortunately, for Jennifer, the Race Committee deemed that Kostanecki and 15 other skippers were on course side before the start, resulting in 16 disqualifications. After the Race Committee sorted out black-flag rulings, Jud Smith’s Africa (USA 179) took first place, followed by Joel Ronning’s Catapult (USA 187) and Julian Fernandez Neckelmann’s Flojito y Cooperando (MEX 384).

J/70s sail off start at WorldsThe Race Committee— lead by Principal Race Officer Mark Foster— quickly began race two’s countdown, with the less-menacing U flag usurping race one’s black-flag guillotine. Jennifer’s start was clearly noticed by her competitors, and the left side of the line became expensive real estate as the clock wound down. A signal sounded, sails sheeted on hard, and 68 polished teams began battling 1.8 nautical miles of uphill sailing.

While Cayard wisely predicted that a new world champion wouldn’t be minted in the first race, this didn’t stop Calvi Network (ITA 456) from dropping the hammer on race two. Come the final downhill run, Calvi Network’s distinctive logoed spinnaker was easy to spot, thanks to the generous lead that she enjoyed over Claudia Rossi’s Petite Terrible (ITA 853) and Kostanecki’s Jennifer.

“We started on the right side of the course, and we controlled the right side,” said Cayard, minutes after exchanging a round of celebratory high-fives with his skipper and crew. “We kept the boat upright on the run, and we had some great steering.” While a bullet was fresh in mind, Cayard— a consummate professional— downplayed their result, given that the team scored 23rd in race one, putting them in 7th place overall. “It’s a long series,” said Cayard, his mind clearly focusing on the next four days.

After two races, Smith’s Africa is in 1st place with six points, followed by Ronning’s Catapult (who also carries six points) and Neckelmann’s Flojito y Cooperando, who finished their day with 15 points. This sets the stage for a massive battle between these three teams as their tacticians—Victor Diaz, John Kostecki and Bill Hardesty, respectively—seek the podium’s top step.

Day Two
San Francisco has a storied reputation as a world-class venue during the summer and early fall, and the second day did not disappoint.

A marine layer and 10 knots of westerly breeze greeted racers at the docks, but by the time the fleet arrived at the Berkeley Circle, pockets of blue sky and gathering airs created visually stunning optics. The Race Committee quickly started the first of the day’s three races, as they well understood that the morning’s flat waters would grow steep and sharp once the afternoon’s ebb tide arrived.

J/70s sailing fast at Worlds in San FranciscoPied Piper (USA 380) enjoyed a fantastic start, which they leveraged into a thin-but-comfortable lead at the first mark rounding, and Gannon Troutman, the team’s brilliant 13-year-old skipper, made sure to press this advantage hard as a scrum of boats battled for position in his wake. A flurry of crew movement produced a fine A-sail set, and Pied Piper launched off toward the leeward gate. Flash forward thirty minutes, and Troutman was still leading the hunt as Pied Piper whistled across the finish line to a round of crew celebrations.

“It was hard in the chop, but it got easier in the flatter water,” said an elated Gannon, seconds after beating many of the world’s best One Design sailors. A great start was an obvious key to Pied Piper’s success, but the team managed to stretch their lead considerably from the windward mark to the first gate by sailing low and fast through the building chop. When queried about his team’s three smartest strategic and tactical moves, Gannon wasted no words: “The start, a later gybe on the first downwind leg, and sailing conservative.”

Stronger airs and a gathering ebb tide conspired to kick up bigger seas, which would only intensify as the afternoon continued. The next countdown commenced, headsails unfurled, and 68 boats hit the line at pace with the race committee citing only two boats for being over early.

Most of the fleet opted for left side of the line and a starboard tack start, but within minutes defending world champion Julian Fernandez Neckelmann (MEX) and his Flojito Y Cooperando (MEX 384) teammates found their own lane and began making big gains on the fleet; by the top of the second windward leg they enjoyed a 1:15 lead over Claudia Rossi’s Petite Terrible (ITA 853), who rounded in second. Come the finish, Neckelmann and his tactician, San Diego-native Bill Hardesty, had stretched this lead by another 42 seconds to take a decisive win.

Consistency is key at any big-fleet regatta, and Neckelmann and company clearly demonstrated they have unlocked the Berkeley Circle’s secrets in moderate-to-heavy conditions by repeating their stunning performance on the day’s final race, commanding every mark rounding and delivering a finish that few eyes witnessed, as the bulk of the fleet was far astern, skirmishing for points and finishing slots.

“There’s still two days to go,” said Neckelmann, who looked happy but was clearly conscious of the remaining races—and other brilliant sailors—that still separate him from winning back-to-back J/70 World Championship titles.

While Flojito Y Cooperando exemplified textbook A-sail sets and gybes, plenty of other teams learned the Bay’s lessons the hard way as shrouds kissed the brine and more than one crew watched valuable sand bleed through the metaphoric hourglass as they fought to retrieve their water-logged kite. Still, broad smiles and happy faces could be seen aboard all boats, irrespective of their finishing positions.

“It was windy at the top mark, but we’re having a great time!” said Heather Gregg, skipper of MUSE (USA 95) and the 2014 J/70 Corinthian World Champion, moments after she and her all-Corinthian crew crossed the finishing line in the day’s final race. “It’s tough sailing in such a big fleet— you make a few mistakes and you’re shot out of the back. But we have a great team and we’re having fun!”

J/70s sailing fast down reachDay Three
Mother Nature had some surprises in store for the sailors on the third day of racing.  For starters, it was split personality conditions that tested each boat's light air and heavy-air skills, as well as their patience as conditions played tricks on racers and the Race Committee alike. While the breeze varied, consistency proved its importance as several teams stayed fast, irrespective of the breeze and its meandering moods.

Winds of 5-10 knots and a flood tide awaited sailors as they began the downwind run to the Berkeley Circle, which is located some 7 nautical miles northeast of St. Francis Yacht Club. With a stronger left-hand component to the breeze than previous days, the Race Committee set the windward mark due east from Alcatraz Island, allowing boats to catch a fast, tide-powered ride to the leeward gate, a procession that was lead by Joel Ronning’s Catapult (USA 187), with hometown hero John Kostecki calling tactics. The breeze slowly built as the fleet swapped their kites for their headsails and Trey Sheehan’s Hooligan: Flat Stanley (USA 389) and Jack Franco’s 3 Ball JT (USA 3) hotly pursued Catapult.

Flash forward to the finishing line, and Catapult strutted to a clean win sailing wing-on-wing, followed by Hooligan: Flat Stanley and Claudia Rossi’s always-fast Petite Terrible (ITA 853). “It felt great to get in a fairly light-air race,” said Ronning, immediately ex post facto. “I’ve got a fabulous crew, and they knew what to do! I listened to [Kostecki], and we kept the boat going fast.”

J70 Grateful Dead sailing San FranciscoWhile Ronning made his win sound simple, there was nothing straightforward about what unfurled next. The Race Committee started their countdowns for race two, the starting gun sounded, the boats launched off into gathering airs before popping their kites at the offset mark, and—with Jud Smith’s Africa (USA 179), Catapult, and Petite Terrible hammering for the leeward gate—the race was abandoned due to a course that was no longer square to the wind.

Principal Race Officer Mark Foster personally apologized to the fleet for this abandonment, but the racers themselves were to blame for the next two starts, which resulted in general recalls as the outgoing tide flushed boats over the line in advance of the clock. The Race Committee noted—via VHF channel 69—that 40-some boats were OCS in the second general-recall start, and that they would be conducting the next start under the dreaded U flag, meaning that anyone deemed OCS would be disqualified.

The message was received, and the next start was noticeably more conservative. The gun fired and the fleet pounded uphill in 18-22 knot airs and some of the afternoon ebb’s strongest waters, which churned up the Berkeley Circle’s infamous washboard.

This nasty chop didn’t stop Africa, Tim Healy’s Sail Newport (USA 2), Mauricio Santa Cruz’s Bruschetta (BRA 403), Catapult and Petite Terrible from finding the windward mark ahead of the pack. Spinnakers were hoisted, afterburners lit, and Africa, Catapult, and Petite Terrible began replaying the abandoned race, along with added pressure from Sail Newport and Bruschetta.

J/70's sailing Worlds on San Francisco  BayFurther astern, however, teams began flashing their keels at the sun. Ander Belausteguigoitia, who is sailing aboard Bala (MEX 680) explained heavy-air broach-recovery: “First you let go of all sails and controls, and if it’s not coming back, you have to pop the halyard about halfway, but you have to be careful it doesn’t go in to the water. The spinnaker is still in the air, and before it goes into the water you have to re-hoist it.” Get it right and the race can be salvaged; blow this delicate timing and your crew can expect a lengthy shrimping session.

While other boats were perfecting their recovery tactics, Africa took the bullet, followed by Sail Newport, Catapult and Petite Terrible. “The guys did a good job, they stepped it up and gave me a good one,” said an elated Smith, just after finishing. When queried about the team’s preference between the two vastly different sets of conditions experienced on Day Three, Smith smiled and admitted, “I like 6 knots, but the crew likes the heavy stuff!”

After seven races, Ms. Rossi’s Petite Terrible is topping the leaderboard, followed by Catapult and Africa. It’s probably the first time a woman skipper has led a fleet filled with multiple Olympic medallists, America’s Cup champions and multiple World, European and National Champions!  Can she take the heat of the battle and persevere against some of the world’s most brilliant tacticians? Time will tell.  Sailing photo credits- Chris Ray/ Sharon Green/  For more information about ALCATEL  For more ALCATEL J/70 World Championship sailing information

J/70s off Porto Cervo, Sardinia- Sailing Champions LeagueDeutsche Touring YC Win SAILING Champions League
(Porto Cervo, Italy)- The Finale of the SAILING Champions League (23rd to 25th September) in Porto Cervo challenged the 32 European clubs from 13 nations with light winds and choppy waves. After 34 races in total, the reigning German League Champions of Deutscher Touring Yacht-Club won the regatta at Yacht Club Costa Smeralda in Sardinia and were awarded with the Robbe & Berking Trophy for the “Best Sailing Club”. Swiss clubs, the Regattaclub Bodensee and the Regattaclub Oberhofen, took second and third place respectively.

“It’s unbelievable what happened here. We were a bit lucky in these conditions but in the end, it worked for us. Only a few people believed that we could do it. We can’t wait to go crazy and celebrate,” said a happy and relieved helmsman of the Deutscher Touring Yacht-Club, Max Weiss.

Deutsche Touring Sailing Club- winners of Sailing Champions LeagueThe constant light wind conditions may have been advantageous for the winners from Southern Germany and the Swiss who claimed the final two spots on the podium. The clubs around the Alps are used to sailing on Lakes with less than gusting winds, so this unusual wind for Sardinia in September suited them perfectly and their lower crew weights added to the advantage. Helmsman of Regattaclub Bodensee, Julian Flessati: “We are surprised how well we managed sailing on ‘this ocean’ but we are very happy to be up here.”

The Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) organized the SAILING Champions League Final for the second time and was once again pleased to welcome clubs from all over Europe. “This second edition of the SAILING Champions League in Porto Cervo has confirmed how popular the format is: fast, fun and technical races. The qualified teams are the best from each of their respective national leagues so the level of competition is naturally very high and we have noticed the standard is even higher than the first edition. I would like to thank all of the teams who travelled here from Scandinavia, from Russia and from all over Europe to race on our waters,” said Riccardo Bonadeo, Commodore of YCCS.

Technical partners for the event include AUDI MOTORSPORTS, SAP SAILING and QUANTUM SAILS.  For updates on social media- #bestsailingclub #sclportocervo #yccs.   SAILING Champions League sailing video summary.   Sailing Photo credits- Francesco Nonnoi  For more SAILING Champions League sailing information

J/24s sailing World ChampionshipGerman JJ-ONE Crowned J/24 World Champions!
(Wakayama, Japan)- Forty-four J/24 teams attending this year’s J/24 World Championship in Wakayama, Japan.  With a tropical storm heading toward the area, it was the calm before the storm on day one of the J/24 World Championship.  The J/24 teams representing Germany, Great Britain, Japan, Korea, Peru, Singapore, and the USA kicked off the Championship in winds of 4-6 knots over two races.

Daniel Frost’s JJOne of Germany mastered the conditions with a 1,2 to grab the early advantage in the five-day event. Demichi Kousuke’s Ichimokusan of Japan held a slim lead on second place, just one ahead of Peru’s Javier Arribas on Hawky. The day’s race winners were Frost in race one and Naoto Kitazume’s Maril in race two.

For day two- Tuesday- the slow-moving tropical storm dampened the day’s proceedings.  The entire fleet was kept ashore with the AP flag flying all day as heavy rains and stormy winds blanketed the area.

Day three- Wednesday- dawned with great promise.  Following yesterday’s tropical storm, winds calmed to 5-8 knots over today’s three races. Keiji Kondo’s Fox of Japan won the opening race, trailed by Demichi Kousuke’s Ichimokusan (JPN) and American Will Welles on Cougar. JJOne earned their second bullet of the regatta in the day’s middle battle, trailed by Fox and Mark Laura’s Baba Louie (USA). Einosuke Morita’s Wailea (JPN) won the final duel, with JJOne and Kato Fumiya’s Lull of Japan rounding out the top trio.

With five races on the books, the German team on JJOne had strengthened their lead over the highly competitive fleet. Daniel Frost’s crew had tallied just 6 net points, able to drop an 11 in race three and keep a skinny tally of 1,2,1,2. Kondo’s Fox moved up to second overall after a solid 1,2,4 for 15 net points. Kousuke’s Ichimokusa was in third with 22 pts.

Day Four- Thursday
Frost’s JJOne placed seventh on Thursday’s only race, but held a firm advantage heading into the final day.  Two Japanese teams held second and third: Keiji Kondo’s Fox and Demichi Kousuke’s Ichimokusan, both with 25 points.

The day started with a postponement onshore for three hours, waiting for the wind to fill in. When it did at 6 knots, Tomomi Hatekeyama’s Gekko Diana won the lone race, trailed by Vladimir Borsthar’s Singapore and Kousuke’s Ichimokusan.

Day Five- Friday Finale
Frost’s German team of Timo Chorrosch, Felix Leupold, Jeronimo Landauer and Daniel Schwarze on JJOne placed 26th in race 7, putting the pressure on themselves going into the final race 8. With their previous 12-point advantage reduced to six, the team did not want to give up the lead they held since the very first race of the Championship. After multiple general recalls, the last meeting started under black flag with just minutes to spare before the time limit, in 8 knots of breeze. JJOne needed to cover the nearest competition, and they did, finishing 10th in the final contest to lock in the Championship. Two Japanese teams took Silver and Bronze: Demichi Kousuke’s Ichimokusan with 47 points and Keiji Kondo’s Fox with 48 points.

“Today was a tricky day. We went in with a 12-point lead, and the first race went really bad for us,” recapped Frost, who has been sailing with the JJOne team for five years. “The last race was very tricky as well. We found ourselves in front of our competitors, and we just sailed safe. We are incredibly happy. It’s a very special day!”

The started the day in fresh breeze but it fizzled near the end of race 7. Kato Fumiya’s Lull won both races, followed by Naoto Kitazume’s Maril and Stephan Mais’s Running Men in Friday’s first battle, and by Vladimir Borsthar’s Singapore and Will Welles Cougar in the last race of the event.

Behind the top three boats were Vladimir Borstnar from Singapore, Singapore in 4th place and Urara Fujii from Japan in 5th position.  For more J/24 World Championship sailing information

J/30s sailing NA in Annapolis, MDZEPHYR 2.0 Dominates J/30 North Americans
(Eastport, MD)- From September 23rd to 25th, the most amazing fleet of nineteen J/30 teams assembled for a 30 love-fest at Eastport YC’s docks- it was the largest J/30 one-design event in at least a dozen years!  Great fun was had by all and there were many examples of lovingly restored J/30s- a “concours d’elegance” would not have been out of the questions for this classic cruising/racing J/Boat design from 1980!

J/30s sailing North AmericansWinning in grand style was Scott Tonguis’ crew on ZEPHYR 2.0 with an astounding record of four 1sts in their scoreline to count just 14 pts total after 7 races- an average of 2nd for the regatta!  Winning the first race, but never overcoming ZEPHYR’s pace was Doug Wallop’s CANNONBALL 2.0, posting 26 pts for the regatta.  The balance of the top five and the fight to get on the podium was fierce for the next three boats.  In the end, Bob Rutsch & Mike Costello’s BEPOP took the bronze with 40 pts.  Just one point back was Doug & Amy Stryker’s TOTAL MAYHEM with 41 pts and fifth was taken by Steve Buzbee’s famously famous BLUE MEANIE with 42 pts.  Top women skipper and owner Linda Wojcik sailed here GUNSMOKE to a very respectable 6th overall!  For more J/30 North Americans sailing information

J/111 Majic 2 wins Palermo Monte Carlo offshore sailboat RaceJ/111 MAJIC 2 Wins XII Palermo- Monte Carlo Race
J/111 SL ENERGIES GROUPE Wins ORC Doublehanded Class!!
(Monte Carlo, Monaco)- YC Monaco hosts the biennial Palermo (Sicily), Italy to Monte Carlo Race that provides sailors in the Mediterranean the amazing challenge of sailing 700nm+ in a northwesterly direction past all the famous islands in the Med, like Sardinia and Olbia, for example.  It is difficult to determine the best routing as it is never obvious based on the rapidly changing forecasts every day; basically driving most navigators absolutely stark raving mad!

Not surprisingly, winning the 4 to 5 day race on elapsed time was David RAMBLER 88, finishing Tuesday evening after their Saturday start.  However, for the smaller boats it became a fast race.  By Wednesday evening eighteen boats had finished, with 20 boats abandoning the race.

Among the finishers was the J/111 MAJIC 2, skippered by YC Monaco member Jean Pierre Seage.  The MAJIC 2 crew was elated when they entered Port Hercules at 6:04 p.m.  As a result, they finished in fifteenth place on elapsed time and won the race in class and overall on corrected time!

An equally outstanding performance took place in the ORC Doublehanded Class.  The winner was the J/111 SL ENERGIES GROUPE skippered by Laurent Charmy.

What friends, alumni and crew of J/Boats are doing worldwide
J/80 sailboats sailing off Hong Kong, China*  The J/80s have challenging regatta in China!  Check these photos out!!  If anyone ever faced a challenge running a regatta it was the organisers of this year’s China Club Challenge Match in Xiamen China.

As you will have seen from a recent article just a matter of hours before the practice day Typhoon Meranti descended on the island city. Well descended is perhaps not the correct word, more like fell with a hammer blow. The strongest storm anywhere on earth this year, it devastated, not only the city with clean-up going on as I write and many areas running on generator power or candles but several of the boats due to be used in the regatta were left rig-less, with tattered sails and even one or two sunk at their pontoon berths.

A fantastic effort by the organizers managed to locate – and persuade owners to lend – a further 8 boats to enable the fleet of 30 to compete as one instead of being split into flights.

It wasn’t only the J/80’s that suffered, with umpires having to wait until marks were laid to take over the RIBs for the racing.

J/80s sailing off Hong Kong, ChinaDay 1 saw typical, almost windless, post typhoon weather with Meranti having sucked virtually all the pressure difference out of the atmosphere and with the SI’s amended to show an earliest start of 1300 instead of the intended 1000 it was perhaps a dubious group of sailors and officials that made their way to Wu Yuan Bay. Add to the light winds mid-Autumn spring tides and racing outside in the maid channel was impossible but with an inspired RO decision to race in the bay itself at least the day didn’t end race- less with a race being banked on the less tidal waters just off the marina.

Day two was a little better for wind, but not much. However by cracking on when the opportunity arose 4 races were squeezed out of the light conditions. The lack of wind produced significant bunching at choke points on the course keeping the umpires whistles busy with both red and green& white variety.

Many of these were from the overly enthusiastic production of the prodder at the top mark, with some ‘sticking it out’ halfway between windward and offset mark with the gennaker still firmly down below. This seemed a habit that, even when boats just in front were penalized, some crews couldn’t get out of the habit!

Eventually the wind strengthened and settled in direction so the later races were less of a ‘wind-hunt’.  And so, the pattern was maintained on Sunday.   Eventually the RC’s PRO managed 7 races; enabling them to declare the series complete!

Like Club Cups of the past, the evening social scene was just as much fun with a highlight being a dinner sponsored by Microlab, the electronics manufacturer involving a Chinese dice game where the prizes were nice Bluetooth sound systems. On our table, many won prizes while freely admitting not having the slightest idea just how we were winning. (like a few sailors I know)

The top eight teams from this weekend’s efforts return in early November’ for the match race element of the Club Cup, once again a fully umpired event.

The final night’s prize-giving was excellently won with a gracious hostess, great food, free-beer and many new prize categories.

J/80 Hong Kong China awardsFor the first time, there was a ladies prize – that’s certainly one way to attract women into our sport – along with separate podiums for pro-sailors and amateur sailors, a clever way to spread the spoils.  The winners of the inaugural Ladies Prize was Luther Female Sailing Team with the amateur podium being 1st; Xiamen University Jetpon Team, 2nd; Yunnan Fuxian Lake Team and 3rd; Whitewave Sailing Center.

Over to the pros, in 3rd place was the Wind & Water Club; 2nd was Sea Blue Team with the podium topped off by J-Boats Racing Team from Xiamen.  At least when the top eight return in 6 weeks time it won’t be into the aftermath of a weather system like that experienced last week.  Thanks to “Shanghai Sailor” for the report from

Warrior Sailing Program sailing J/22 sailboats* Warrior Sailing Program- sailing J/22s!  The Warrior Sailing Program is dedicated to maritime education for wounded, ill and injured service members of the US military. The program facilitates opportunities, communicates experiences and builds partnerships between the military and marine communities while eliminating the barriers to entry and promoting continued engagement. Video published on Sep 22, 2016.
  Watch YouTube sailing video here-

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.