Wednesday, August 2, 2017

J/Newsletter- August 2nd, 2017

J/70s sailing downwindCorinthian USA J/70 Nationals Preview
(New Bedford, MA)- New Bedford Yacht Club is hosting the 45th edition of the late summer classic, the quintessential “Buzzards Bay Regatta.”  As part of that program, they are also hosting the second Corinthian J/70 USA National Championship. While this pocket rocket speedster has become a wildly popular boat with teams comprised of pros and top-level amateurs, the Corinthian Nationals shine the spotlight on “friends and family” teams, many of them former college standouts or dynamite amateur sailors, but none holding a Category 3 designation from World Sailing.

Hoping to provide world-class racing for the 30+ teams that are competing will be NBYC PRO Charlie Cooper.  At least nine races are planned for the fleet; given the normally amazing and most excellent conditions that Buzzards Bay normally has on offer for sailors- sun, clear skies, 2-5 foot chop, and 15-25 kt winds from the WSW!!  While the initial forecasts show lighter weather, all things can change fast on the Bay- the key “fuel” is sun and clear skies, no matter where the wind blows, it will always come in from the WSW quadrant!

There are many strong teams participating in this year’s edition of the Corinthian Nationals; many are top caliber teams that have won the J/70 North Americans outright, won the J/70 World Corinthian Championship, and won the Midwinters Corinthian Championship. In other words, there is no shortage of talent in the fleet.  In fact, some skipper/owners have ditched their “pro’s” to have a go at the amateur side of the world!

To say the least, the “Ladbrokes and Vegas” form on this regatta is just about tossed out the window.  No question, there are certain teams that should factor into the overall leaderboard.  Those teams should include Andrew & Melissa Fisher’s BUTTON FLY from American YC; Mike Sudofsky’s CARLOS from local Beverly YC; Carrie & Ed Austin’s CHINOOK from Ridgewood, NY; Andy & Mallory Loe’s DIME from Seattle YC in Seattle, WA; Glenn Darden’s HOSS from Forth Worth Boat Club in Texas; Jenn & Ray Wulff’s JOINT CUSTODY from Annapolis YC in Annapolis, MD; Heather Gregg & Joe Bardenheier’s MUSE from New York YC in Newport, RI; Peter Vessella’s RUNNING WILD from St Francis YC in San Francisco, CA; Brian Keane’s SAVASANA from local Beverly YC from Weston, MA; Hannah Swett’s SPARKLE from New York YC in Jamestown, RI; Peter McChesney’s USA 209 from Annapolis YC; and Chris Chadwick’s WILD CHILD from Eastport YC in Annapolis, MD.  Needless to say, betting on any of these crews would be about as good as playing the children’s game of “pin the tail on the donkey”; the tale of that tape will be of interest to many across the world of J/70 racing!  Nevertheless, the weekend weather forecast is challenging and promises the winner will be a versatile crew, to say the least!  For more Corinthian J/70 Nationals sailing information

J/70s sailing league- St Mortiz, SwitzerlandSAILING Champions League- St Moritz Preview
(St Moritz, Switzerland)- From September 1st to 3rd, the leading sailing clubs in Europe from sixteen countries will compete on the Lake of St. Moritz to qualify for the SAILING Champions League final in Porto Cervo on September 22nd to 24th at YC Costa Smeralda.  The host will be the famous Segel-Club St. Moritz.

Some places on earth are simply unlike anywhere else. The mere mention of their name is strangely compelling and brings to mind all manner of stunning imagery. St. Moritz is one such place. And, that’s not just because this is where James Bond dashed down the ski slopes in “The Spy Who Loved Me.” For it was here, 1,856 metres above sea level, in the heart of the spectacular Upper Engadin lakes district, that the notion of winter holidays and present-day winter sports were born, and where Olympic Winter Games were held on two occasions. The first electric light, the first skiing school, and Switzerland’s first electric tram are among the pioneering feats in St. Moritz’s long list of achievements. And yet, St. Moritz originally rose to prominence due its mineral springs, which have been attracting visitors for more than 3,000 years, and lay the foundation for its spa tradition, and interest in water sports- like sailing!

Today, St. Moritz is the number one alpine holiday destination. The sun-kissed Alpine metropolis on the south-facing flank of the Alps boasts an airport, the Engadin Airport, and it is the terminus of both the Glacier Express and the Bernina Express– two names that stand for quintessential classic train travelling. When UNESCO bestowed the accolade of “World Heritage Site” on the Rhaetian Railway’s Albula and Bernina train lines in 2008, St. Moritz became the only destination in the world to unite both the Olympic Games and the UNESCO labels.

J/70s sailing St Moritz, SwitzerlandThe “Via Serlas” is to St. Moritz what the “Rodeo Drive” is to Los Angeles. Just a bit more condensed. High-end art galleries round off the exclusive shopping opportunities in the town center. The Segantini Museum is internationally renown, and the St. Moritz Casino caters for entertainment late into the night. Those inclined to be sporty will be thrilled by the Olympic Bobsled Run St. Moritz–Celerina and the Cresta Run, two legendary bobsled and skeleton institutions. Other legendary Lake St. Moritz winter events include the “White Turf horse races” and the “Snow Polo World Cup”. They have long become the extravagant social highlights in St. Moritz’s remarkable calendar of events that so far counted five Alpine World Ski Championships.  And now, a new one- the SAILING Champions League high in the Swiss Alps!

The SAILING Champions League continues its success. Apart from St. Petersburg and Porto Cervo, this year St. Moritz is part of the qualifiers for the ultimate SAILING Champions League finale in Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy on September 22nd to 24th.

St Moritz- top of the world sailing!The best European sailing clubs will be demonstrating their skills at this exceptional sailing rendezvous in St. Moritz. The lake is only 600 metres wide, so fast-turning maneuvers with excellent tactics and perfect boat-handling are indispensable. As in many international sailing league events, the teams will be sailing International J/70 class sailboats. Over three days, sailing will take place at an altitude of 1,768 metres above sea level (about 5,700 ft or over 1.0 statue mile). Welcome to Europe’s highest altitude regatta in St. Moritz- simply “ON TOP OF THE WORLD!”  For Americans, do note that Lake Dillon’s regattas in Colorado are a touch higher- at 9,017 feet above sea-level (2,802 metres), but not J/70s— yet!

Enjoying the cool atmosphere on St. Moritz’s lake will be a fleet of twelve J/70s with two dozen teams from across Europe.  This event is part of two qualifiers for the SAILING Champions League Finale that takes place rom September 22nd to 24th in Porto Cervo, Italy at the YC Costa Smeralda on the island of Sardinia.  The other qualifier takes place from August 11th to 13th at St Petersburg YC in St Petersburg, Russia.  For more SAILING CHAMPIONS League sailing information

J/70s sailing San FranciscoROLEX Big Boat Series J/70 Sailing Deal!
(San Francisco, CA)- California J/70 Sailors!  We have a deal for you...

According to Fleet Caption of J/70 Fleet 19 San Francisco Bay, Christy Usher, she is offering a FREE J/70 charter to one lucky Southern California J/70 team that wants to come sail Rolex Big Boat Series on the San Francisco Bay, Sept 14-17, 2017!!

Christy says, “You have to act fast! This offer is only good for the next 24 hours. Now, we have a boat, who will travel? Contact me for details- Christy Usher- via email ( or my cell (650) 714-1276.

What lucky J/70 sailor will win a ROLEX Submariner Watch this year? Register here.

Here are some epic pics from Daniel Forster from last year’s 2016 ROLEX Big Boat Series here.

J/70 sailing photos- Sharon GreenThis year, my friend Sharon Green will be shooting the event! You can find her amazing Rolex Big Boat Series and Key West photos of J/70s here:

- J/70 Worlds-
- J/70 Rolex Big Boat Series-
- J/70 Key West-

Not able to sail RBBS?!  Then charter your boat for $700 a day. Not able to transport your boat, then charter a boat for $700 a day!!”

Contact Christy Usher for charter opportunities and information- email ( or cell (650) 714-1276.  For more J/70s at Rolex Big Boat Series sailing information

J/70 sailing upwindBuzzards Bay Regatta Preview
(New Bedford, MA)- The 45th edition of the late summer classic known as the Buzzards Bay Regatta is on track to be an exciting event, drawing boats from local, traditional classes as well as from some of the most popular sportboats currently on the racing circuit.

This year’s regatta includes kiteboards (like all 5 variations- foilers, too) as well as a huge J/70 class for its Corinthian Nationals and also great participation by J/owners in various handicap classes.

In the PHRF Spinnaker division, 7 of 10 boats are all J/crews!!  They include three J/109s- Corey Eaves’ FREEDOM, Ted Herlihy’s GUT FEELING and Dan Boyd’s WILD THING.  Plus, they will be up against past regatta winners like Doug Curtiss’ J/111 WICKED 2.0; Ira Perry’s J/29 SEEFEST; and NYYC Annual Regatta winner- Tom Sutton’s J/35 LEADING EDGE from Houston, TX.

Finally, in PHRF Non-Spinnaker is Jamey Shachoy’s pretty J/122 AUGUST WEST and Ken van Colen’s hot blue J/30 MOODY BLUE!  Then, in PHRF Cruising division is another J/122, Jimmy Masiero’s URSUS MARITIMUS from Sterling, MA.   For more Buzzards Bay Regatta sailing information

J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

Several huge events took place this past week in Europe as well as in North America.  On the America’s side of the world, the J/88 North American Championship was hosted by Youngstown YC, in Youngstown, NY and was sailed on Lake Ontario- an amazing event with an even more remarkable outcome!  Then, the famous Little Traverse YC “Ugotta Regatta” took place off that storybook little Hamlet on the northwestern shores of Michigan- Harbor Springs.  It was great racing on a pretty little bay on Lake Michigan for J/70s, J105s and PHRF/ ORR handicap classes.  Also in the Midwest, the CanAm Challenge for J/70s, J/22s, and PHRF racers took place at Youngstown YC in Youngstown, NY.  Then, out west we get the final report and outcome for the infamous J/105 Sausalito Invitational Regatta.  Infamous for one reason- it’s the end of July, on San Francisco Bay!  Guess what happens when you get fog at 55 F degrees in the morning reaching its tentacles through the Gorgeous Golden Gate Bridge??  And, the desert valleys off to the east are pushing 110 F degrees??  Yup, the crazy, truly blowing dogs-off-chains, type of conditions that top 30-35 kts on a cool, sunny, breezy day!!  Then, out east was the final installment of the HELLY HANSEN NOOD regattas- the Marblehead NOOD for J/70s and J/105s!

Over in Europe, Cowes Race Week is continuing to take place all week long in Cowes, Isle of Wight, England- more on that update next week!  Meanwhile, the conclusion of the ALCATEL J/70 CUP national series in Italy was sailed in Scarlino.  It was the fourth and final regatta to determine the Italian J/70 National Champion.  It was also the final event before the AUDI J/70 Worlds takes place at YC Costa Smeralda at Porto Cervo, Sardinia.  The week before, the J/70 Coupe de France took place in La Rochelle, France, site of the 2015 J/70 Worlds.  Finally, the Norwegian J/70 Sailing League held their third act for the Division 2 sailing clubs in Latvik, Norway.

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 29- Aug 5- Cowes Race Week- Cowes, Isle of Wight, England
Aug 3-5- J/70 Corinthian Nationals- South Dartmouth, MA
Aug 3-5- Buzzards Bay Regatta- South Dartmouth, MA
Aug 10-13- U.S. J/70 Youth Championship- Newport, RI
Aug 11- 40th Anniversary J/24 Round Island Race- Newport, RI
Aug 12-13- J/Fest New England Regatta- Newport, RI

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

J/70 skipper- Alcatel J/70 Cup seriesCALVI NETWORK Wins ALCATEL J/70 CUP!
(Scarlino, Italy)- The curtains falls on the 2017 edition of ALCATEL J/70 CUP, the national championship circuit promoted by the J/70 Italian Class and organized with as an open event that allowed crews from anywhere to join the already enormous Italian fleet in one of the most popular J/70 one-design circuits around the world.

A total of 101 teams from different nineteen countries participated in the events held in San Remo, Malcesine, Riva del Garda and Scarlino.  Crews came from the Cayman Islands to Norway, from Turkey to the USA! Many arrived in Italy to start training with the fleet that will also compete in the AUDI J/70 World Championship, to be held in Porto Cervo, Sardinia in September at YC Costa Smeralda.

J/70 crew- Calvi NetworkWith two victories out of the four events, it was CALVI NETWORK’s owner/skipper- Carlo Alberini- that affirmed they were one of the fastest boats in the fleet.  His crew included Branko Brcin, Karlo Hmeljak and Sergio Blosi.

Second and third place in the overall ALCATEL J/70 CUP ranking go, respectively, to the two-time European Champion Claudia Rossi aboard PETITE TERRIBLE, and to the European Champions of 2015- Luca Domenici’s Team NOTARO.

Claudia Rossi's Petite Terrible sailing teamIn the Corinthians division, Gianfranco Noè’s team won all the events to become the indisputable leader of the fleet. Significantly, they were also a team that was good enough to take 5th place in the overall “open” ranking for all teams!  The balance of the podium was completed by Alessandro Zampori’s MAGIE DAS SAILING TEAM and by Marco Schirato’s JAWS TOO!

Congratulations to the American team that won the Scarlino Act IV of the ALCATEL J/70 CUP series, Peter Duncan’s RELATIVE OBSCURITY from American YC in Rye, New York!  It was Peter’s first, and only, participation in any leg of the national circuit- his crew included Jud Smith, Willem van Waay, and Ian Liberty.  Second behind them in the event was Claudia Rossi’s PETITE TERRBILE, followed by Alberini’s CALVI NETWORK.

ALCATEL J/70 CUP sailing video
Day 1-
Day 2-
Day 3-

For more ALCATEL J/70 CUP sailing information

J/88 sailingHIJINKS Conquers J/88 North Americans
(Youngstown, NY)- Of the nine races at the J/88 North American Championship, Laura Weyler's HIJINKS won five of them. Their performance dominated the thirteen-boat fleet, allowing the local team to sit out the final race.

Owner Weyler was joined on board by Adam Burns (helm), Pete Doyle (bow), John Goller (headsail trimmer), Kevin Morgan (strategist) and Kris Werner (tactician). Tim Finkle's SEAWEED came on strong to take the silver position with 23 points. Doug Newhouse's YONDER tied on points with Iris Vogel's DEVIATION at 29 pts for third and fourth, respectively.

J/88 Hijinks winnerWeyler bought her J/88 about a year and a half ago, and was especially satisfied to win this Championship on her home turf. When asked who on her team she'd like to recognize, she said, "If I were Belichick, I'd have to say it's Brady. On our boat, that’s Adam.  Adam was flawless, as well as the rest of the crew!" The J/88 Class was formed earlier this year, and Weyler thanked Iris Vogel, the first Class President, for "leading this Class into the future. It's going to be a growing Class. The level of competition will continually attract people to buy these boats."  Here is how it all took place over the three-day championship.

Day One- A Breezy Day
The thirteen J/88s took to the waters of Lake Ontario on Friday, where 15-20 knots of breeze allowed four wavy, bumpy races. Weyler’s HIJINKS collected a hefty advantage with scores of 1-1-3-1 for just 6 points. Mike Bruno’s WINGS held the second spot with 15 points. Two boats were tied at 17 pts each for third and fourth, respectively; James Egloff’s TOUCH 2 PLAY and Iris Vogel’s DEVIATION.

HIJINKS, with local Burns at the helm, took bullets in the first two races.  They were followed by Newhouse’s YONDER and Egloff in race one, and by Tim Finkle’s SEAWEED and Bruno’s WINGS in race two. Bruno then won the third contest, ahead of Egloff and Weyler. Vogel and Doug McKeige’s JAZZ watched HIJINKS notch its third victory of the day in Friday’s final duel.

J/88 North AmericansDay Two- Lumpy Moderate Conditions
After two more races Weyler’s HIJINKS maintained her place atop the leaderboard, now holding an eight-point advantage heading into the final races on Sunday. With Burns at the helm, HIJINKS lodged its lowest finish thus far— a fifth place in race five.  But, they were able to discard the score as their throw-out after race six!  A second in that contest leaves HIJINKS with 8 net points in six races. Vogel’s DEVIATION earned a 2-3 on Saturday to move into second place at 16 net points. Tim Finkle’s SEAWEED and Newhouse’s YONDER were tied just one point back.

Saturday began with breeze at 10-12 knots and lumpy seas, as Newhouse’s YONDER triumphed over Vogel’s DEVIATON and Egloff’s TOUCH 2 PLAY. The Race Committee had to shorten the course in the next race as winds decreased. Finkle’s SEAWEED earned the win, trailed by Weyler and Vogel. The J/88s stayed on the water hoping for the breeze to return, but an additional race was not able to be completed.

J/88 sailing upwindDay Three
The fleet was already staring at a “fait accompli”, with Weyler’s HIJINKS just about pre-ordained to win the regatta overall- such was their domination over the first two days.  With winds on Lake Ontario around 5-7 knots on Sunday, HIJINKS simply sailed away again over the horizon to two more bullets, sealing the deal to win the event.  They did not sail the last race.

The rest of the fleet battled it out to fill out the top five.  In the end, Finkle’s SEAWEED took 2nd place, followed by Newhouse’s YONDER taking the bronze over Vogel’s DEVIATION on a tie-breaker at 29 pts each.  Rounding out the top five was Egloff’s TOUCH 2 PLAY Racing from Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The top Corinthian team was Joseph & Jeffrey Pawlowski on EASY EIGHTS.  For more J/88 North American Championship sailing information

J/70 sailing La Rochelle, FranceGOLD SAILING Triumphs @ J/70 Coupe de France
(La Rochelle, France)- Hosted by Societe de Regate Rochelais (SSR) in La Rochelle, France, fifteen teams competed in the J/70 Coupe de France Regatta.  The fleet was met by very challenging conditions all weekend long, mostly windy, showers, clouds and very uncharacteristic La Rochelle bay conditions! in the end, after three days of racing and seven races completed, it was the Spanish team of GOLD SAILING that won the regatta by just one point!

On Friday, the first day of racing, it was heavy winds, big winds and grey skies.  The conditions favored the heavier crews.  Winning the first race was Herve Leduc’s JIBE SET with crew of Fabian Pic, Stephane Barraux and Mikael Garrett. Second was Bruno James’ French crew on LE McDONALDS CHERBOURG and third was Iker & Almandoz Ortiglia’s GOLD SAILING from Spain.  While the Race Committee at SSR was preparing to run the second race, the winds rapidly increased to 25 to 30 kts plus, so wisely canceled racing for the rest of the day.

J/70s sailing off La Rochelle, FranceFor the second day of racing, it was more clouds, but this time it was an onshore breeze of 12 kts that gradually increased to 20 kts by the end of the day.  It was great sailing for everyone, with four races being run, much to the delight of all the crews.  McDONALDS CHERBOURG won the first race, then Leduc’s JIBE SET won the second and third races, then GOLD SAILING won the fourth race of the day.  The racing was very tight amongst the top five boats.

On the final day, more good breezes.  By winning the first race, GOLD SAILING Spanish crew (Iker and Ortigala Almandoz, Borja Sumalac, and Iraeta Sanhez) won the event since they could now include a toss-race in their scores.  Taking second for the event was Leduc’s JIBE SET crew (Fabian Pic, Stephane Barraux, Mikael Garrett) just one point back.  Third was McDONALDS CHERBOURG led by Bruno James and crew (Sebastien Metivier, Christian Potier, & Hugues Dorriere) with 19 pts.  The balance of the top five included Laurent Sambron’s crew on HEMON CAMUS (Jean-Yves Jaffrezic, Benjamin Diouris, Pierre-Yves Tinel, & Brewal Nael) with 22 pts in 4th place and Cyrille Teston’s J BEC.RE crew (Jean Francios Nevo, Didier Le Moal, & Bruno Gandolphe) in 5th position.

Top woman skipper was Maxime Baudry’s crew on TEAM WINDS LA ROCHELLE (Etienne Mabit, Frederic Bouvier, Jean Francois Cruette, & Clara Fortin) in 6th position overall.   J/70 sailing photo gallery here- credits- Antoine Brule   For more J/70 Coupe de France sailing information

J/70 Vineyard Vines winnersVINEYARD VINES Wins Marblehead NOOD Overall!
J/105 MERLIN Wins Boat of the Day!
(Marblehead, MA)- After the final day of the Helly Hansen National Offshore One Design (NOOD) Regatta at Marblehead Race Week today, J/70 class winners John and Molly Baxter on VINEYARD VINES took home the overall prize. In addition to new gear from Helly Hansen, the VINEYARD VINES crew (ironically) earned a berth in the final NOOD championship regatta, hosted by Sunsail in the British Virgin Islands Oct. 22-29.

The Riverside, Conn.-based couple is fairly new to J/70s, having owned their boat for less than two years. They decided to compete in the Helly Hansen Marblehead NOOD to train for the class world championship, which will be held in Marblehead in 2018 and which they officially qualified for by winning this event.

“We wanted to check out the spot, and we heard there were a lot of good teams out here,” John Baxter said. “It was fun. We definitely got the lay of the land.”

The Baxter’s, along with crew members Jake LaDow and Luke Lawrence, held strong at the top of the fleet from the very beginning, winning two of three races on the first day. From there, it was all about consistency, good starts and conservative sailing, according to John Baxter.

J/70 Vineyard Vines sailing Marblehead NOODWhile Baxter said the team’s biggest takeaway was figuring out how to balance the boat going upwind, Lawrence, the tactician, went on to say that the team is making huge strides in their training program for the Worlds in Marblehead.

“There’s a big checklist to make sure that you’re set up to be able to go out there and have a shot,” Lawrence said. “To come here to a venue like this early on and to excel against a majority of our good competition in the USA, I mean – it’s nice. But along with everything that comes with that, we’ve learned ten-fold how to come in to the next event.”

Looking ahead, the crew plans to return to Marblehead next summer leading into the World Championship after training their way down to Florida and back.

Regatta organizers determine the overall winner based on the strongest individual finish in the most competitive class. The J/70 fleet was the largest of the weekend and completed seven races in three days.

J/70 Marblehead Junior crewAlso in the J/70 class, the Helly Hansen Junior Crew— a team of five local youth sailors specially selected to compete in the regatta— finished 12th of 30 boats. Their crew consisted of Clark Uhl, Rachel Foster, Katharine Bowman, Kate O'Donnell and Garrett McKinnon.

The balance of the podium behind the Baxter’s included Bruno Pasquinelli’s STAMPEDE in 2nd place with tactician Jeremy Wilmot (Australia) on board and Brian Keane’s SAVASANA in 3rd place with USA Olympian Stu McNay as mainsheet/ tactician.

In the J/70 Corinthians Division, winning was Duncan Swain’s CLOWN CAR, following in 2nd was Henry Brauer’s RASCAL crew of Newporters and San Diegans, and in third was Stein Skaane’s SHRED.

Charlie Garrard, skipper of the J/105 MERLIN, was also the recipient of Sunday’s North Sails Boat of the Day and the Cressy Award said the key to his success this weekend was having his teenage kids, Emily (pit) and Jack (bow), onboard.  “Without them it wouldn’t happen,” Garrard said. “Together, we make it work.”

Behind Garrard’s crew were past multiple Marblehead NOOD winners, Fred de Napoli’s ALLEGRO SEMPLICITA with 12 pts, and in third was Steve Goldberg’s AIR EXPRESS with 15 pts.  Sailing photo credits- Paul Todd/ Outside   For more Marblehead NOOD sailing regatta information

J/22s sailing CanAm regattaUSA Wins CanAm Challenge!
(Youngstown, NY)- In addition to the J/88 North American’s, the CanAm Challenge Regatta hosted the J/70 Lake Ontario Championship as well as one-design classes for J/22s and PHRF handicap racing boats.  An overall perpetual prize was awarded to the USA that topped rival Canada based on the high-point scoring system!  Note, that included street hockey madness!!

Winner of the J/70 Lake Ontario Championship after eleven races scored was John Newell’s JUNIOR with 24 pts total, counting mostly top three finishes.  Taking second with mostly top five finishes was Tod Sackett’s FM, they were also Corinthians Division winners.  Then, third place went to Paul Cannon’s MAXIMON and also securing 2nd in Corinthians!  Rounding out the top five was Scott Weakley’s Canadian crew on REX, followed by Justin Hyas & Ben Zahradnik’s REVEILLE in 5th place.  Third Corinthians was Rick Pfarr’s LITTLE RASCAL.

The ten-boat J/22 class saw Alfonso Bringas’ crew on NORTH SAILS win by a comfortable margin of six points. Second was famous local sailor, Cory Sertl’s LUCH with 26 pts.  Just two points back in third was Vic Snyder’s infamous MO’MONEY with 28 pts.  Tied on points with them, but settling for 4th place was John Huebschmann’s ESCAPE.  Fifth place was none other than a relaxed J/22 NA’s winner, Chris Doyle on the JUGE 4 1!!

In the PHRF handicap racing world, the six boat PHRF 1 Spin class saw a clean sweep by four J/Teams!!  Yes, the odds were stacked against that outcome, but they did it!!  Winning was the Canadian crew on Andrew Koolman’s J/35 LOYALIST.  Second was yet another J/35- Paul-Angus Bark’s CRIME SCENE.  Third place went to Ed Berkhout’s J/105 ALI KAT and 4th position to John Reinhold’s J/124 FUTURES!!

In the PHRF 1 Non Spin class, Doug Clarke’s J/35C ROGUE WAVE took 2nd place. And, in PHRF 2 Spin it was Rick Sherk’s J/24 BAD HABITS winning class!!  For more CanAm Challenge Regatta sailing information

J/70 Norwegian sailorsAskoy SF Tops Norwegian J/70 Sailing League II
(Larvik, Norway)- The Second Division in the Norwegian J/70 Sailing League is having incredibly tight, hard fought racing for the top of the leaderboard in their overall series.  This past weekend in Larvik, Norway, yet another gorgeous seaside town in the Norwegian archipelago, the outcome of the regatta produced a huge change-over of the top teams.

For starters, Risør SF looked strong with two straight wins in the 2nd division in the first two regattas in Oslo and Sadefjord.  However, this past weekend, Askøy SF won the event in Larvik and leapt into the overall lead for the Division 2 series by just one point!

J/70s sailing off NorwayIt was very even sailing during the weekend of racing in Larvik.  However, one team clearly distinguished themselves from the pack. Askøy SF won seven out of eleven flights to easily win the event.  Risør SF fought hard, but had to settle for a 6th place in Larvik, and thus dropped to 2nd place overall.

The fight behind Askøy SF was very close and nerve-racking. In the end, it was Bærum SF who took second place with 21 points and Bundefjord SF with 22 points to take third place.

As a result, the overall standings now sit with Askoy SF in first with 7 pts, Risor SF in second with 8 pts, Bundefjorden SF in third with 13 pts, Hurum Sf in 4th with 15 pts and Alesunds SF in 5th with 17 pts.  Follow the Norwegian J/70 Sailing League on Facebook  For more Norwegian J/70 Sailing League information  

J/105 sailing- San Francisco BayBLACKHAWK Tops J/105 Sausalito Invitational Regatta
(Sausalito, CA)- The Sausalito YC J/105 Invitational on July 22-23 2017 brought 19 J-105’s out of their summer slumber for a weekend of heavy air racing - typical SF Bay summer conditions with winds in high teens and building into the 20’s, with gusts into the mid-30’s on Sunday!

The Race Committee set up the starting area off the west face of Alcatraz and the windward mark toward mid-span of the Golden Gate Bridge.  With a significant flood tide on both days, many boats were doing dip-line starts. The PRO managed to cant the line so that competitors had to make a decision – start at the pin, closer to the relief along the city front, or start 15-20 degrees upwind toward the signal boat and hope that was enough to outweigh the extra time spent in a foul tide. Once the fleet hit the city front the decision was reversed, tack back into the middle of the Bay on lay line, fighting more current, or sail extra distance in the better water. With such a heavily favored side of the course upwind there was a premium on clear lanes and the ability to tack when desired, leaving many boats no choice but to over stand the weather mark.

J/105s sailing San Francisco BayConditions Saturday were classic San Francisco summer, 15-25 knot wind with fog rolling in and significant ebb chop in race 3. The finish to race 1 proved to be one of the more exciting and critical moments in the regatta. Arbitrage, Blackhawk and Godot all came into the downwind finish overlapped, slightly above lay-line for the left (pin) end of the line. With the heavy flood tide and breeze near 20 knots, a late decision by Godot caused all three to over-stand and started a chain reaction of them jibing and broaching, leaving the tide to take them across the finish line. Both Arbitrage and Blackhawk protested Godot for not providing room to finish and the protest was scheduled for Thursday. After two more races, Blackhawk held a 3 point lead over Arbitrage and Godot, pending the outcome of the protest.

Sunday brought a repeat of the conditions from Saturday. 15-20 knot breeze with a flood tide for race 1 led to a runaway victory for Arbitrage, with the next boat a half leg back. The three boats were tied going into the final race, pending the prior day’s protest. At the start of the final race the same decision had to be made, start on the left end of the line and go for current relief, or start at the heavily favored right side. Blackhawk and Godot chose the pin, and Arbitrage the committee end.

Soon after the start, a tanker came through the fleet.

The boats at the pin were able to cross in front of the tanker and over to the current relief on the City Front and had a significant advantage over Arbitrage, Advantage and a few others who had to tack back into the flood that had to avoid the tanker.

Blackhawk then led around the first weather mark, and with the heavy flood tide and 20-25 knot breeze, the lead quickly built. By the end of the race the wind reached 25-30 knots with gusts into mid-30s, leading to planing conditions downwind and challenging maneuvers for all crews. Blackhawk went on the win the race, with Godot finishing second and Arbitrage a hard earned 6th after being forced to go behind the tanker on the first leg.

Upon discussion after racing, Godot retired from race 1, leaving Blackhawk 4 points ahead of Arbitrage for the regatta victory. The top 5 were rounded out by Donkey Jack in 3rd, Jam Session in 4th and Godot in 5th, beating Hazardous Waste via tie breaker thanks to their victory in race 2.   Sailing photo credits-   For more J/105 Sausalito Invite sailing information

J/70s sail Ugotta Regatta- Harbor SpringsJ/Love @ Ugotta Regatta!
(Harbor Springs, MI)- Sailors from across America and the World head to Harbor Springs each summer for sailing traditions, friends, relaxation, and a time to recharge and connect with the spectacular natural beauty of Harbor Springs.  The water is so clear and clean you can see nearly 35 feet down to the grassy, sandy bottom!  It is a slice of the Caribbean in the Great Lakes North!  No wonder people love coming to this gorgeous little corner of the world!!

One of the hottest summer attractions in this quaint little village is the annual Little Traverse YC “Ugotta Regatta”!  The event takes place the weekend following the 2nd of the Mackinac Races (Port Huron-Mackinac or Chicago-Mackinac).

J/105 sailingLTYC’s Ugotta Regatta is open to all sailors.  However, there is a city-required cap of 88 boats (yes, a town ordinance!) and registration is first come, first served. The series begins with one-design racing on Friday followed by tour-of-the-bay courses on Saturday and Sunday.

The weekend’s festivities kick-off bright and early Friday morning with a fun tradition: a long line of happy people beginning at sun-up outside Irish Boat Shop to purchase the 2017 Ugotta Regatta t-shirt. Each year, the shirt design changes and with a limited production, the lines begin early to score a coveted shirt! Yes, people are a bit crazy in northern Michigan, but then again, that is part of its charm!!  Then, on Friday night is the “Welcome to Harbor Springs” celebration at the Irish Boat Shop for racers and racer-chasers only!

On both Saturday and Sunday mornings, the LTYC hosts the famous, traditional “Little Traverse Sailors Pancake Breakfast.”  Open to the public and racers, the Pancake Breakfast is a delicious way for the boat teams to quickly fuel up before getting on the water. One highlight of the breakfast?? The young sailors flip less-than-perfect pancakes over their shoulders to land on the roof of the sail shed behind them- a bit of light-hearted entertainment to start the day!!

After the end of sailing each day, the LTYC hosts parties both Saturday and Sunday evening for regatta participants!  In short, there is no lack of fun, merriment, and socializing ashore, interspersed with moments of stark terror sailing on the gorgeous azure blue waters off Harbor Springs!!

J/70 corinthians teamThe venue has become a very, very popular one for J/70s in the Great Lakes region.  The family-oriented Harbor Springs J/70 fleet #25 has grown to eleven local boats, with several regular visiting fleet members from Chicago and Detroit that join in on all the fun! Not surprisingly, the J/70s were the largest and most competitive one-design fleet in the LTYC Regatta in July.

Winning the enormous twenty-boat J/70 division was Richard Lehmann’s WIND CZAR with all top five finishes to win with just 14 pts total.  Second was John Heaton’s EMPEIRIA crew from Wilmette, IL with 32 pts.  Third and top Corinthian crew was Scott Sellers’ TRES BURRITOS with 38 pts.  Rounding out the top five were Polk Wagner’s ESCAPE, taking 4th overall and 2nd Corinthians, and in 5th place was Rick Shaffer’s NASTY BABY. In the photo are (L-R) the ESCAPE crew- Pilar Macomber, Will Macomber, then Ellie, Sarah Wagner, Polk Wagner.

In the J/105 one-design class, Mark Symonds crew on PTERODACTYL have been on a roll in their past three major events.  Remember, they won their class in the Chicago-Mackinac Race, took 2nd in the Bayview-Mackinac Race, and now won the Ugotta Regatta J/105 class!  Wow.  I think Mark’s wife is about to convert their garage into a man-cave full of just this year’s trophy’s and pickle dishes!!  Second was the hot local team of Carter Williams on his famous CREATIVE DESTRUCTION and taking 3rd was Bill Petzold’s GREEN FLASH.

In the world of handicap racing we find a number of J/Crews had fantastic performances racing around the Bay!!  In ORR B Division, Geoff Brieden & Jeff Clark’s J/120 SCOUT stunned the class with a 2-1 to win by a comfortable margin.  Third was yet another J/120, Mike Fozo’s PROOF, fresh from winning their class in the Bayview-Mackinac Race.

Then, in PHRF A Division, Dave Irish’s famous J/111 NO SURPRISE posted a 2-2 to take second in class, followed by Carl Hanssen’s J/111 VARIANCE in third with a 3-3, what a coincidence, eh??

In PHRF B Division, Scott & Jim Sorbie’s J/88 LEGACY took a 5th in class, with Larry Taunt’s J/35 BAD DOG in 7th, Tim Wade’s J/88 in 8th and Bob Evan’s J/109 GOAT RODEO in 9th.  This was a very weird class, ranging from M24 sportboats to a 100 ton Tartan 4000- not exactly “cricket” from a handicap standpoint!!

In PHRF Non-Spinnaker, Bill and Judy Stellin’s J/42 JAYWALKER did exactly that, “walked away” from their fleet with two bullets to win by a comfortable margin in their class!  Second were their colleagues on a J/32- Gary Stewart’s J/32 ZONE with two 2nds in their scoreline!  For more Ugotta Regatta sailing information
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