Wednesday, September 18, 2019

J/Newsletter- September 18th, 2019

J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

The third week of September is always special, as it marks the occasion for the famous Rolex Big Boat Series in San Francisco, CA. This year, there were ORR handicap classes that included J/125s, J/111s, and J/120s as well as huge one-design classes for J/70s, J/88s, and J/105s. Down south off the Point Loma, California coastline, the Cortez Racing Association held their annual Dennis Conner Around the Coronados Race; it is generally a quick trip of 30.6nm out and around the Coronado Islands for the offshore fleet; a J/145 simply smoked the race. Meanwhile, on the east coast, the Annapolis YC held their unique, new Annapolis 3-2-1 Regatta on J/22s and J/30s that featured a mix of team racing and match racing.

In Europe, there was a feverish amount of activity across the Continent and the nearby islands. In the British Isles, the RORC IRC Doublehanded Nationals took place off Cowes, IOW, England with a great performance by a J/109 team. Across La Manche, the German J/80 Championship took place off Glucksburg, Germany; it was hosted by the Flensburger Segelclub.

Then, there were several J/70 sailing league events taking place from Scandinavia to the Swiss Alps. Near the Arctic Circle, the Finnish J/70 Sailing League sailed their first event of the season for twelve teams in Espoo, Finland. Just south of them in the land of the forever rising sun was the Swedish J/70 Sailing League that was sailed for a dozen teams in Vasteras, Sweden. Just south of them was the German J/70 Sailing League that sailed their penultimate event in Kiel, Germany. The Swiss J/70 Sailing League completed their season off the quaint, picturesque village of Spiez, Switzerland on Lake Thun.

J/99 sailing off Newport 
J/99 & J/112E @ Fall Boat Shows!
(Newport, RI)- It is that time of year, again! Time to plan a visit to one of the exciting sailboat shows in either the USA or Europe.  Featured in most of the shows are the race-winning cruiser-racers, such as the J/112E and the new J/99.
J/112E sailing offshore
J/112E- the family cruiser that crushed the ORC & IRC Worlds and Europeans
With a spacious two-cabin accommodation plan and a comfortable, ergonomic cockpit, the all-new J/112E is as well suited for the annual cruise as she is sprinting to Mackinac Island or short-handing through rough weather. Versatility in sailboat design means not only a sailboat that can do many things, but also one that can do many of them well across a wide range of conditions, both fair and adverse.

The J/112E joins her sisterships, the J/97E and J/122E, as an exceptional upwind performer. V-shaped bow sections provide superior directional stability and reduced slamming in waves. Freeboard forward and topside flare help to keep the deck dry. A long waterline combined with a low vertical center of gravity results in a smooth, sea-kindly motion – more like that of a 40 footer. For more J/112E sailboat information.

J99 European Yacht of the YearJ/99- the seriously fast, comfortable, offshore shorthanded speedster
Making her Southampton, Newport, and Annapolis debuts, the J/99 is the newest addition to the J/Sport range, combining headroom and comfortable interior accommodation with the tiller-driven responsiveness of a sport boat. The sail and deck plan are optimized for easy handling with fewer crew, and incorporate the latest developments from the award-winning J/121 and the new Offshore Sailing World champion J/112E. The interior features twin aft cabins, a proper sit-down forward facing nav station, an L-shaped galley, and a private forward head with sail locker. Plus, the J/99 has been nominated for European Yacht of the Year Award. For more J/99 sailboat information.

Here are the various boat shows you can visit to catch up with the latest in the J/Boats line-up of offshore high-performance cruisers:
  • Sep 13-22- Southampton Boat Show- J/99 and J/112E- at Mayflower Park Marina in Southampton, England, on Stand M436 and M438. For more information.
  • Sep 18-23- Grand Pavois La Rochelle- J/99 and J/112E- at Port Des Minimes, La Rochelle, France on Pontoon 5 on the waterfront. For more information.
  • Oct 10-14- Annapolis Sailboat Show- J/99, J/97E, J/70- at Annapolis Cityfront. For more information.

J/80 sailing offshore 
J/80 Fall Package Special- Order now!
(Newport, RI)- With over 1,600 boats now sailing in 30+ countries, the J/80 continues to set the world standard for keelboat one-design racing and leading-edge institutional sail training. And 2020 promises to be even more exciting in North America with the return of the J/80 World Championships to Newport, Rhode Island (Sept 28 – Oct 3). Newport hosted both the inaugural J/80 Worlds in 2001 and the epic 2010 J/80 Worlds. Class racing in North America is re-energized, and to celebrate, we’re pleased to announce the J/80 Fall Package:
  • 2020 Model J/80 with standard specifications
  • AG+ mast and boom
  • Profurl R250 New Gen roller furling system
  • Lewmar winches and Harken deck gear
  • Triad Trailer - Galvanized, double-axle lift off trailer
  • Companionway spinnaker bag.
  • Safety Gear package – anchor, chain & rode, bucket, bilge pump, first aid kit, two fenders, two docklines.
The package price is under $55,000 (FOB Bristol, RI) with an order deadline of October 15, 2019. Delivery dates are available from February to May. Please contact your local J/Dealer or J/Boats for more details- Ph. +1-401-835-8150 or email-  For more International J/80 sailboat information

J/70 sailing San Francisco Bay 
Epic Finale @ Rolex Big Boat Series
(San Francisco, CA)- Seventy-nine teams gathered on San Francisco Bay to sail the 55th edition of the St. Francis Yacht Club’s annual Rolex Big Boat Series from September 11th to 15th. The regatta format is unique in that it offers enormous challenges to the most experienced skippers, tacticians, and crews. Their is a premium on getting good starts, divining the swift moving currents, and executing perfectly on teamwork to get into and out of the corners of the random leg race courses; the StFYC PRO has over forty-three courses to choose from depending on breeze direction and strength and factoring in the current that can often hit 5.0 kts in some places in the Bay! This year, the contingent of J/Teams virtually took over the Rolex Big Boat Series, with five boats sailing ORR Division and fleets of J/70s (14), J/88s (6), and J/105s (23) sailing one-design courses in the morning (windward-leewards), and the random leg course in the afternoon to finish off the fable finish line off the StFYC Race Deck! That was a total of forty-eight J/Teams, about 61.0% of the total fleet!

The 2019 edition posed a few new challenges for the sailors this year as the first two days were warm and light, while the second half of the regatta on Saturday and Sunday provided classic SF Bay conditions- the famously epic, “fresh to frightening”, “blowing dogs off chains”, 18 to 30 kts of cold Pacific Ocean breezes from the west underneath the majestic Golden Gate Bridge. Here are the daily reports on what went down over the four days and some of the carnage some unfortunate J/teams endures in the big breeze.

sunset on San Francisco Bay
Day 1- Dawn Glass-out to Afternoon Cruise Around
If nature abhors a vacuum, sailors have detested windless conditions since the days of ancient mariners. Historically, there is little reason to sing the lack-of-wind blues, given the Bay’s notorious reputation for delivering breeze-on racing. Unfortunately, for these same sailors, Thursday delivered one of the Bay’s rare, windless mornings forcing the StFYC’s Race Committee to make the difficult decision to downshift from the day’s two planned races to a single afternoon race, allowing the slowly building sea breeze to develop and overcome the unseasonably warm onshore temperatures enshrouding the city.  

“The forecast is uncharacteristically light this week because of the nice weather,” said Graham Biehl, the StFYC’s Race Director, who explained that, typically speaking, high temperatures in the city equate to light airs on the Bay. “So, we have plans to run shorter races. It’s the reason that we have so many courses to choose from,” he said, adding that he and his team have 43 racecourse permutations available. “We don’t like to shorten courses— this is tricky for the racers,  So, we choose courses that are on the shorter side.”

While the AP flag flew for several (atypical) hours from the RC boat, all competitors and organizers understood that the pain was ephemeral.

“Compared to a lot of other places that lose days to too little wind, too much wind or lightning storms, we have it really good on the Bay,” said Susan Ruhne, Regatta Chair for the 55th edition of the Rolex Big Boat Series. “But I always tell people that days like this are a really good test of a crew’s ability to shift into action when the wind fills in. Good boats are able to just go into race mode so that when the wind fills in, it’s game on.”

That is exactly what happened at approximately 1400 hours, local time, when the call was made to send the eight fleets out for a single race, which started in light airs developed into great racing late afternoon.

Once the sea breeze finally arrived, the Race Committee selected courses that were heavy on tactical challenges but relatively shy on miles. This smart move ensured great racing on an afternoon when the ebbing tide opposed the westerly breeze, making for sluggish upwind and downwind legs.

“We always say that, while we can’t control the weather, we can deliver world-class race course management,” said Ruhne. “Today was a great example of this. We didn’t like skipping the day’s first race, but it was worth it to ensure fair and even racing across the Bay.”

Winning the first J/70 race was Peter Cameron’s KANGAROO JOCKEY, followed by Chris Kostanecki’s JENNIFER and John Brigden/ Chris Snow’s COOL STORY BRO.  In the J/88s, Jim Hopps’ WHITE SHADOW started off strongly with a bullet, with David Britt’s SPLIT WATER and Steven Gordon’s INCONCEIVABLE rounding out the top three.  In the heated J/105 battles, it was Tim Russell’s super J/105 NE*NE winning the light airs race over Ryan Simmon’s BLACKHAWK and Bruce Stone & Nicole Breault’s ARBITRAGE (the recent winners of the J/105 North Americans). In ORR C Class, David Halliwill’s J/120 PEREGRINE took the win, followed by fellow J/120 CHANCE (Barry Lewis) taking the deuce.

J/105s sailing San Francisco
Day 2- More Chesapeake Bay-like weather- hot and flat!
Generally speaking, Fridays that fall on the 13th don’t enjoy a strong reputation for events unfurling smoothly, and when it coincides with hot, onshore temperatures in San Francisco, the situation on the Bay can become light, patchy, or even downright breathless. Such was the case today for the crews on Friday morning. The morning dawned bright, blue and warm, with barely a cat’s paw aggravating the Bay. While this certainly wasn’t the lucky start that many competitors were hoping for at a regatta that does not drop races, the day’s silver lining was a weather forecast that promised breeze by mid-afternoon. The AP flag remained hoisted with sailors idling ashore until 1400 hours when enough sea breeze arrived to allow the race committee to score a single race.

“The high temperatures ashore make it difficult to run races,” said Graham Biehl, StFYC’s Race Director, noting that today played out much like the first day of racing at this high-level event, with a single—albeit high-quality—race scored in all eight fleets. “But, the good news is that Saturday and Sunday look to be typical San Francisco Bay conditions.”

Competition was plenty stiff in ORR-B. “It’s a competitive fleet and the boats are exciting, with sport boats and sport-boat-like boats, so it attracts some great talent,” said Rich Jepsen, who is serving as vice president of US Sailing and as tactician aboard Dick Swanson’s J/111 BAD DOG (USA 103). “We’re an amateur crew, so we’ll be happy to stay in contact with the best boats, such as another J/111 that we spar with- SWIFT NESS.”

In ORR C Class, the J/120s continued to perform well, with Lewis’ CHANCE and Halliwill’s PEREGRINE scoring a 2nd and 3rd, respectively.

The J/105 class was witnessing a strong leader emerging in the form of Ryan Simmon’s BLACKHAWK, adding a 1st to their tally to lead with just 3 pts. However, behind them it was evolving into a dogfight between three boats- Russell’s NE*NE, ARBITRAGE, and Jeff Litfin’s MOJO.

J/105s on San Francisco Bay
Day 3- Classic, Epic, Fresh to Frightening Winds… Finally!
After two days of light-air racing, Mother Nature finally flipped the fun switch on day three, giving the big-air fanatics a huge dose of the classic Bay breeze. After starting in a beautiful morning breeze from the west of 10-12 kts, by the time the Race Committee’s finishing gun fell silent, gusts of 25+ knots were reported by the Golden Gate Bridge.

“The breeze came back!” said Graham Biehl, StFYC’s Race Director, the relief from the last two days of AP flags and wind holds visible on his now-happy face. “Thankfully the forecast materialized and we got in two races in a row.”

While breeze-on conditions are especially helpful to the heavily ballasted Classics class and the larger ORR-A and ORR-B boats, the same relief visible on Biehl’s face was evident on the expressions of J/70, J/88 and J/105 sailors, all of whom were more than happy to abandon their cerebral, light-air skills for the kind of heart-pounding, adrenaline-filled downhill rides that draw these One Design teams to this regatta, year-on-year.

“The Rolex Big Boat Series is a World Championship qualifier for the 2020 J/70 Worlds, and it’s good to see a big fleet,” said Biehl. The winning Open and Corinthian J/70 teams will both receive berths to the 2020 J/70 Worlds (July 27-August 2, 2020), which is being hosted by the California Yacht Club in Marina Del Rey, California. “We haven’t seen much J/70 action on the Bay since the 2016 Worlds, which we hosted at StFYC, so it’s good to see them lining up again.”

Christy Usher, co-owner and co-skipper of CHRISTINE ROBIN, explained that while some J/70 teams competing have already qualified for the 2020 Worlds, their prize berths transfer to the next fastest finisher if an already-qualified team wins top honors in either the Corinthian or Open divisions. “No mercy is being shown out there,” said Usher, adding that every J/70 team entered the regatta to win, plain and simple. “Everybody wants to go to next year’s Worlds because it’s local—there’s no hassle of traveling to Europe or the East Coast, so these berths are first and foremost in everyone’s minds.”

Scott Sellers, one of three owners of 1FA (USA 534), which is one of five Corinthian entries amongst the 14-strong J/70 fleet, re-emphasized what makes late-summer sailing on the Bay so special. “Tight competition and screaming spinnaker runs all over the Bay are the most memorable parts of Big Boat Series,” said Sellers. Harrison Turner, another one of 1FA’s co-owners, agrees. “This venue is one of the most unique in the world that always delivers high quality racing,” said Turner. “It takes a lot of local knowledge to sail the Big Boat Series…it really places a premium on doing your homework and drawing on previous BBS experiences.”

John Brigden’s COOL STORY BRO beat Usher’s CHRISTINE ROBIN and Kostanecki’s JENNIFER across the line for the day’s first race. Brigden had a repeat performance during the day’s second race, besting Cameron’s KANGAROO JOCKEY, followed by CHRISTINE ROBIN. After a total of four races, COOL STORY BRO tops the J/70 class leaderboard, followed by CHRISTINE ROBIN and 1FA.

While the J/88 class isn’t wrestling for berths to their Worlds, they are competing for top bragging rights in their second running as a One-Design class at the West Coast’s most competitive regatta.

“We definitely feel the pressure, every other team has been working hard to come get us,” said Gary Panariello, skipper of COURAGEOUS and the 2018 winner of a Rolex timepiece and the Richard Rheem Perpetual Trophy.

Still, experiencing pressure and having fun are by no means mutually exclusive entities.

“The best part of racing at the Rolex Big Boat Series is the wildly varying conditions,” said Panariello. “Breeze on and more on, water flowing in every direction, heavy metal (ships) moving down through the middle of the race course and lots and lots of boats trying hard to get to the same spot.” And then there’s the matter of managing sight lines and real-time tactics while negotiating a six-strong fleet of identical boats. “Driving the boat downwind in big breeze is super exciting,” continued Panariello. “The big challenge driving is that it's hard to see anything other than the big kite! You need to have great faith that the crew is keeping all eyes out of the boat.”

Sadly, faith didn’t keep Gordon’s INCONCEIVABLE mast vertical during the day’s second race, as the fleet got pounded by heavy conditions on the inside of the Golden Gate Bridge. After losing her rig over the side, INCONCEIVABLE had to retire from the race and the regatta. But, looking outside of the lifelines helped COURAGEOUS out-sail Britt’s SPLIT WATER and Jeremy Moncada’s JUNO to take the day’s first bullet. Then, the leaders flip-flopped in the second race, with SPLIT WATER claiming top honors, followed by COURAGEOUS and Jim Hopp’s WHITE SHADOW. At day’s end, WHITE SHADOW and SPLIT WATER were tied on points, with COURAGEOUS 2 pts back.

Meanwhile, amongst the 23-strong J/105 class– the regatta’s largest One Design class and racing for StFYC’s Commodore’s Cup perpetual trophy and accompanying Rolex timepiece– competition was as stiff as ever. This began with the day’s first starting line sparring in the Treasure Island starting area, and it continued through two races to culminate in a series of fast, close, downwind finishes off of the StFYC’s Race Deck.

“It was really interesting and variable out there today,” said Ryan Simmons, skipper of BLACKHAW, who reported seeing a puff of 30 knots when they were just to the east of the Golden Gate Bridge. “By the second leg of the second race we were seeing winds in the mid-20s, with bigger puffs. Driving was very intense and was all about turning down in the puffs downwind.”

BLACKHAWK’s crew proved they are equally adept at winning in a breeze as they are in the light stuff by taking the bullet in the day’s first race. BLACKHAWK was joined across the finish by Ian Charles’ MAVERICK and Phillip Laby’s GODOT, in 2nd & 3rd, respectively. In the second race, Russell’s NE*NE earned the win, followed by BLACKHAWK and Rolf Kaiser’s DONKEY JACK. After four races, Blackhawk led the chase in the J/105 class, followed by NE*NE and Littfin’s MOJO.

Sadly for the crews of Laby’s GODOT and William Woodruff and Sergey Lubarsky’s RUSSIAN ROULETTE, the gusty conditions during the second race proved stronger than their rigs, which succumbed to classic West Coast air loading. Thankfully, no injuries were reported at press time, however, there’s no question that this mishap will sadly prove detrimental to both teams’ hopes of seeing their names etched onto the Commodore’s Cup.

J/70 winners- Cool Story Bro
Day 4- More Epic, Breeze-on Weather for the “Bay Tour”!
Cool onshore temperatures, ebbing fog, flooding waters and a gathering sea breeze greeted the sailors on the final day. That is usually a recipe for a massive breeze to build by early afternoon. The day’s course selection allowed all teams to strut their big-air skills while enjoying a stadium-style finish in front of cheering fans ashore on StFYC’s Race Deck.

ORR B Class sailors raced for The City of San Francisco Trophy, which consists of one of the golden spades used during the 1933 groundbreaking ceremony for the Golden Gate Bridge. After a total of five races, Zachery Anderson and his J/125 VELVET HAMMER took the silver while Reuben Rocci’s J/111 SWIFT NESS just missed a podium finish by 3 pts in the epic final race, taking fourth place in the end.

ORR C Class saw the two J/120’s land on the podium, but not the in the way Lewis’ CHANCE team wanted to end the regatta. Going into the last race, CHANCE was leading the class by one point. However, they had their hands full taking on a well-sailed Swan 42 and their colleagues on the J/120 PEREGRINE. In the end, a disappointing final race 4th place ensured CHANCE of the silver, but no Rolex Submariner watch to add to their collection (they have won their class before!). Taking third was Halliwill’s PEREGRINE.

StFYC’s Commodore’s Cup is awarded to the regatta’s largest One-Design fleet, an honor that once again falls to the 23-strong J/105 class. Simmons’ BLACKHAWK crew showcased their big-fleet-management skills to win this proud trophy and accompanying Rolex timepiece; they were joined on the J/105 class podium by Russell’s NE*NE and Charles’ MAVERICK, in 2nd and 3rd, respectively.

While these four classes competed for perpetual trophies and timepieces, the racing was just as tough in other classes. For example, the J/70 class saw 14 boats on the starting lines, making it the regatta’s second-largest One Design class. Bridgen’s COOL STORY BRO demonstrated regatta-winning strategy and skills to take home the top prize in this popular class. They were joined on the podium by the 1FA team (Scott Sellers, Harrison Turner and Geoff McDonald) and Tracy and Christy Usher’s CHRISTINE ROBIN.

Additionally, the top Corinthian and Open J/70 teams at this year’s Rolex Big Boat Series also competed for berths at the 2020 J/70 Worlds (July 27-August 2, 2020), which is being hosted by the California Yacht Club in Marina Del Rey, California. 1FA and Cool Story Bro. emerged as the Corinthian and Open winners; however, because 1FA already earned their Corinthian berth, this slot will go to the Usher’s CHRISTINE ROBIN.

The J/88 made its Rolex Big Boat Series debut in 2018, and the newly-launched class returned this year with even more polished skills and tactics, not to mention racecourse strategies honed during last year’s regatta. Ultimately, David Britt’s SPLIT WATER took first-place honors, followed by Panariello’s COURAGEOUS and Hopp’s WHITE SHADOW, who took home second and third place finishes.

While all racers care about their results, they also care about sailing on clean, plastic-free water, and StFYC took some significant steps to make their signature regatta a significantly more sustainable event. “I was proud that the StFYC received Sailors for the Sea’s Platinum-level status for this year,” said Ruhne. “Seeing refillable water-bottles and the West Marine-sponsored water bottle stations was great. We significantly reduced the amount of single-use plastic waste at this regatta, which is a win-win situation for everybody involved.” Sailing photo credits- Sharon Green/ Ultimate Sailing.  For more Rolex Big Boat Series sailing information

J/80s sailing offshore 
DIVA Dominates German J/80 Championship
(Glucksburg, Germany)- Over the weekend of September 13th to 15th, the Flensburger Segelclub hosted their annual Flensburger Fordewoche for fleets of ORC handicap yachts and also the 2019 German J/80 Championship.  A fleet of eleven J/80s enjoyed good weather and an eight race, one-discard series on the lake.

The surprise winner was Arnet Wilcken’s DIVA team, sailing with two other family members (Karolin & Michaela Wilcken), Thore Hansen and Iver Hadler. They simply started out in first place on the first day and never wavered from their mission to win the German J/80 title for 2019.  Their record included only podium finishes of three 1sts, four 2nds, and a 3rd place that got tossed out! Their final tally of just 11 pts was 10 points ahead of the three-time German J/80 Champion- Martin Menzner’s PIKE. Menzner’s crew (Lars Keilwitz, Nils Beltermann, and Frank Lichte) posted three 1sts and two 2nds, but was inconsistent in the other races; their final score of 21 pts net landed them in the silver medal position. Rounding out the podium was Torsten Voss’ FRIDA with crew of Holger & Moritz Elle and Roland Villasenor; their net score was 26 pts.

Two Danish teams managed to make the trek from Copenhagen, Denmark to sail on the beautiful lake. Coincidentally, together, they rounded out the top five positions. Fourth was Flemming Djernaes’ PROJECT 2 (with crew of Jorn Anderson, Kim Londal, and Soren Bro Mikkelsen) and in fifth place was Johnny Jensen’s BHJ FONDEN (with his team of Soren Brask, Mads Petersen, and Rasmus Lamberts). For more German Open J/80 Championship sailing information

J/145 sailing off San Diego, CA 
J/145 Wins Dennis Connor Around Coronados Race
(San Diego, CA)- This past Saturday, September 14th, the Cortez Racing Association held their annual Dennis Conner Around the Coronado’s Race. It is generally a quick trip of 30.6nm on a fast reach from the start off Point Loma, San Diego out around the Coronado rocks and back. The race was established to honor and commemorate one of the most famous San Diego sailors- the America’s Cup winning Dennis Connor (he was also a multiple-time Star World Champion).

There was a tremendous turn-out for the race, with fifty-four boats registered that included many of San Diego’s notable offshore ocean racers; such as Pendragon (TP52), Staghound (RP50), Blue Blazes (RP 50), Zero Gravity (Soto 40), Cabron (Botin 80), Hurricane (Stealth 11.8), Splendor (Driscol Sloop), and Sizzle (Hobie 33).

Despite the formidable competition, it was a family team on the J/145 PALAEMON that finished 1st in Class and 1st Overall! The boat was skippered by Rudy Hasl, with Phil Hasl as tactician.

“With winds in the 7-11 kts range and calm seas, our J/145 PALAEMON just glided effortlessly through the water, keeping a fast VMC to North Coronado Island and then back to the finish in San Diego Bay,” commented skipper Rudy Hasl. “We just flew past the Soto 40 and were behind the RP 50 Staghound by only 2 minutes! It was an exciting day for us!”

J/70 sailing off Finland 
Brando Seglare 1 Lead Finnish J/70 Sailing League
(Espoo, Finland)- This past weekend, the Finnish J/70 Sailing League sailed their first of three events in Espoo, Finland for the twelve sailing clubs from across their cool Scandinavian nations. The regatta was blessed with a cross-section of weather, challenging the sailors from light to breezy conditions.

J/70 Finland winners
In the end, it was Brando Seglare 1’s amazingly consistent performance that earned them their first well-deserved win. Their record was simply remarkable- nine 1sts, eight 2nds, and just two 3rds to win with a total of just 32.5 points. Behind them, it was an all-out battle for the silver position on the podium. With just six boats sailing each heat, there was lots of room for rapid losses and gains that are even more rapid. Feeling the heat of such roller-coaster racing were Nylandska Jaktklubben and Alandska Segelsallskapet 1 teams.  The outcome of their titanic struggles was determined in their 20th and final heats! Taking the silver by just one point was Nylandska Jaktklubben over Alandska Segelsallskapet 1.
Follow the Finnish J/70 Sailing League on Facebook   For more Finnish J/70 Sailing League information

J/70s sailing off Germany 
VSW Dominating German J/70 Sailing League!
(Kiel, Germany)- One month before the big season finale for the eighteen sailing clubs in the German Sailing Bundesliga, the favorites were in top form on the penultimate round in Kiel, Germany from September 13th to 15th. The six event series started in Starnberg, and then went to Konstanz, Travemunde, Berlin, and Kiel in succession. The finale will end in Glucksburg.

J/70 sailing off Hamburg, Germany
The club Seglerhaus am Wannsee (VSaW) may, or may not, be the pre-ordained champion of the 2019 Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga, but it would take a near act of God to displace them from the top of the podium for the overall season series in the final event in Glucksburg.

"We will do everything at the final to win, but we know that our chances for the championship title are low. In Glücksburg, we try to secure and expand our second place to be sure of the SAILING Champions League 2020. We do not look at the opponents behind us, but focus on our performance," said Nick Beulke, skipper of the Bayerischer Yacht-Club’s team. Nevertheless, overcoming a 15 pts lead in one regatta is virtually impossible, other than a complete nuclear meltdown and virtual withdrawal by the VSW team.

J/70 German women's sailing team
In last weekend’s DSBL Kiel event, VSW won the regatta quite convincingly, even dominating last year’s DSBL winner- Norddeustcher Regatta Verein. That remarkable outcome sealed the deal for VSW’s remarkable season that started off with a 1st place in the first event in Starnberg. They followed the fantastic performance with a 4th in Konstanz, a 4th in Travemunde, and a 1st in Berlin.

J/70 German sailing league winners
Meanwhile, Bayerischer Yacht-Club, Wassersport-Verein Hemelingen and NRV are locked in a huge battle for the last two spots on the podium, as a mere three points separate them all! What goes down in Glucksburg will determine the silver and bronze Medallists on the podium… anything can happen between these three high-octane, incredibly competitive teams. For NRV, it is an opportunity for redemption, to dig themselves out of the basement of despair and live to tell another story of triumph.  For WSH, it is a story of ultimate triumph and glory for a team that has never been on the podium overall. For BYC, accustomed to battling NRV for the all-German J/70 club honors, it is a battle for consistency to remain relevant at the top of the leaderboard.

The big season finale for the 36 clubs of the 1st and 2nd Sailing Bundesliga will be held in Glücksburg at the Flensburg Sailing Club from 17th to 19th October.  Follow the German J/70 Sailing League (Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga) on Facebook   For more German J/70 Sailing League information

J/70 sailing off Sweden 
KSSS Crowned Swedish Sailing League Champions
(Vasteras, Sweden)- For the eighteen Swedish sailing clubs that participated in the 2019 Allsvenskan (Swedish J/70 Sailing League), there was no question the outcome of the four event series (Strängnäs, Malmo, Örnsköldsvik, Vasteras) was nowhere near predictable.

Winning the first two regattas in near “runaways” was SFS Hunnebo. However, an incredibly disastrous 13th place performance in the Örnsköldsvik event proved to be their undoing. Despite an amazing rebound to take a third in the final event, it was not event to top the leaderboard, but sufficient to bronze overall.

J/70s sailing off Sweden
The Hjuviks BK sailing club was not considered by the “betting parlors” to be a top team at the beginning of the season. But, after a 3-5 in the first two events, everyone took notice the HjBK team was an incredibly competitive crew to contend with. Despite a 7th at Örnsköldsvik, the HjBK team bounced back with a vengeance to take second in the final event and secure the silver for the overall series, much to the surprise of the other top teams from the previous season.

J/70s sailing off Sweden
If HjBK was a surprise, the stunning performance of the SFS Hunnebo team simply came out of “left field”. Who? The team won the first two series in Strängnäs and Malmo quite handily. They, like their  HjBK colleagues, simply sent their fortunes “down the mineshaft” at Örnsköldsvik, finishing 13th— ouch, like almost last!! In the finale, they redeemed themselves as a team and pulled themselves up by their bootstraps to secure a third in the finale to take the bronze overall! A thrilling finale for the SFS team!

KSSS wins Swedish J/70 Sailing League
The ultimate winner, KSSS (Royal Swedish YC), started off with a humbling 4th place finish in the first event in Strängnäs. However, like a team and train gaining steam and strength in every event, their 2nd in Malmo, 2nd in Örnsköldsvik, and winning the finale in Vasteras sealed the deal for what became a very, very strong team in the end. Congratulations to the KSSS team- Hugo Christensson, Mathias Hermansson, Björn Hansen and Jenny Hammersland. Plus, congrats to all the other team members during the year- Mikael Lindqvist, Pontus Meijer, Liv Gyllfors, Mathias Bredin, Niklas Edler, Hedvig Liljegren, Carl Johan Leuckfeld, Fredrik Liljegren, Hampus Appelgren, and Linnea Floser.  Follow the Swedish J/70 Sailing League on Facebook  For more Swedish J/70 Sailing League sailing information

J/70s sailing of Lake Thun, Switzerland 
CVVT Top Swiss J/70 Sailing Challenge League
(Spiez, Switzerland)- Over the weekend of September 13th to 15th, Swiss J/70 Sailing Challenge League teams eagerly traveled to the spectacular Lake Thun in the middle of Switzerland to sail off the fairy-tale town of Spiez. Featured on the prominent point is the 15th C Spiez Castle, overlooking the harbor and the pretty, classic, picturesque little Swiss village nestled on the edge of the mountainous lake.

Speiz, Switzerland on Lake Thun
The dozen teams that participated enjoyed light to medium lake breezes all weekend. With light winds in the morning, the fleet simply sat onshore until the “sea breeze” (thermal) picked up to 4 kts before heading out for more rounds of 15-20 minute short-course racing. The regatta PRO managed to run thirteen races; his job was made much easier with the “robot marks”- autonomous marks powered by simple electric trolling motors, run by an Android mobile phone app….move the mark on the map and the robot mark simply drives itself to that spot! Cool!

Swiss J/70 League winners at Spiez, Switzerland
Over the three days, the three podium spots were not decided until the final race. Fighting hard for those spots were four clubs; Cercle de la Voile Vevey la Tour, Seglervereinigung Thalwil, Yacht Club Spiez (the hosts), and Zurcher Yacht Club. After learning the ropes and how to make a J/70 go fast, YC Spiez raced up the standings after being mid-fleet for the first two days, scoring four bullets in a row to end up third on a tie-breaker with Zurcher YC. Winning the regatta was CVVT with just 26 points, scoring virtually all podium finishes. Second was SVT with 30 points.  For more Swiss J/70 Sailing League information

J/109 sailing offshoreJ/109 Fast @ RORC Doublehanded Nationals
(Cowes, England)- The RORC hosted their 2019 IRC Doublehanded National Championship over a three-week period. It was a unique format to test the ability of doublehanded offshore teams to sail long distance offshore, as well as tightly fought inshore, around-the-buoys short course racing on the Solent. Coincidentally, all races started off the famous Royal Yacht Squadron starting line on the Solent. The first segment of the event used the RORC Cherbourg Offshore Race as the offshore component. Then, there was a weekend of racing from the RORC’s clubhouse and RYS starting line on the Solent for the fleet of a dozen teams from The Netherlands, United Kingdom, and Sweden.

After six races, the amazingly versatile offshore family cruiser-racer- the J/109- managed to pull off a podium finish against the latest semi-custom offshore European racing machines that were all purpose built to race as offshore doublehanded racing boats (with no interiors). In the end, Chris Preston’s J/109 JUBILEE pulled off a near miracle, completely dominating the last three inshore races with a 2-1-1 to score a bronze medal.  For more RORC Doublehanded Nationals sailing information

New York YC wins Annapolis 3-2-1 
New York Yacht Club wins Annapolis 3-2-1 Regatta
(Annapolis, MD)- Yacht Club challenge events are that opportunity for cross pollination among the sailing world, with various racing formats allowing clubs to demonstrate their prowess on the water. Corinthian competition at its finest, and for the bruised egos during the day, the nightly events offer the prospect for redemption.

The three-day event will host teams of six crew representing their home club using boats supplied by AYC. Like a triathlon, there will be three different racing formats on keelboats: 3v3 team race with no spinnakers and two sailors per boat, 2v2 team race with spinnakers and three sailors per boat, and 1v1 match race with all six sailors. This array of disciplines will require a diverse skill set from each team member throughout the multi-day event.

New York Yacht Club won the inaugural Annapolis Yacht Club 3-2-1 Invitational held September 13-15 in Annapolis, MD. Seven teams faced off in 21 flights and 63 races over three days of chamber of commerce weather, with NYYC claiming the historic Sparkman & Stephens Trophy followed by Annapolis Yacht Club 2 in second and Severn Sailing Association in third.

The event format consisted of yacht club teams from around country with six crew that rotated into J/22s and J/30s in three disciplines throughout the each day: team race 2-up in 3v3, team race 3-up in two boats with spinnakers and then rotate onto a J/30 to match race with all six crew.

“This concept– three years in the making– came to fruition this weekend. The competitors were tapped both physically and mentally as they had to switch gears with roles, rules and even which way to round the mark,” said Bill Jorch, regatta co-chair.

Presenting sponsor of the regatta Barbados Tourism Marketing, Inc., donated a trip for two to Barbados including airfare. The lucky winner drawn from a list of all competitors was Rhoan Boucher, a member of “The Rhodies” a team made up of members of Ida Lewis Yacht Club and Bristol Yacht Club.  For more Annapolis 3-2-1 Regatta sailing information

Regatta & Show Schedules:

Sep 19-22- J/30 North American Championship- New Orleans, LA
Sep 22-29- J/70 North American Championship- Cleveland, OH
Sep 27-29- Canadian J/105 Championship- Toronto, ONT, Canada
Sep 28-29- J/Fest San Diego- San Diego, CA
Oct 11-13- China Coast Race Week- Hong Kong, China
Oct 11-12- J/80 Copa de Espana- Coruna, Spain
Oct 17-20- J/88 North American Championship- Rye, New York
Oct 18-20- J/105 Masters Regatta- San Diego, CA
Oct 19-26- J/24 World Championship- Coconut Grove, FL
Oct 19- Rolex Middle Sea Race- Gzira, Malta
Oct 25-27- J/24 East Coast Championship- Annapolis, MD
Oct 25-27- J/Fest Southwest- Lakewood, TX
Oct 25-27- J/105 Lipton Cup Regatta- San Diego, CA
Nov 1-4- French J/80 Championship- La Rochelle, France

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

J/70s off starting line 
J/70 North American Championship Preview
(Cleveland, OH)- The Edgewater Yacht Club will be hosting the 2019 edition of the J/70 North American Championship for the world’s largest and most popular sportboat class from September 24th to 29th. The racing will be taking place on the challenging waters of Lake Erie, famous for its severe chop and rapidly changing winds along their city waterfront.  In the background is the famous Rock & Roll Museum that is located, literally, on the waterfront.

Forty-four teams are participating from the USA, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, and Mexico. As one might expect, there are many strong teams participating as they begin to look forward to the 2020 J/70 World Championship in Long Beach, California.  Some of those crews from the USA include Dan Goldberg’s BAZINGA, Joel Ronning’s CATAPULT, Travis Odenbach’s HONEYBADGER, Tim Finkle’s JUNIOR, Bruce Golison’s MIDLIFE CRISIS, Gary Warner’s MOAB, Oivind Lorentzen’s NINE, John Brim’s RIMETTE, Pam Rose’s ROSEBUD (with Taylor Canfield as main/ tactician), Brian Keane’s SAVASANA, and John & Molly Baxter’s TEAM VINEYARD VINES. The top non-USA teams include the Mexicans (Fernando Gutierrez’s WOODSTOCK & the Perez family’s ZAQUERO), the Brazilians (Harold Solberg’s VIKING and Pedro Camargo’s MANCHA NEGRA), the Chileans (Victor Lobos’ MEMPHIS and the Ducasse family’s DUCASSE Sailing Team), and the Canadians (Scott Weakley’s REX from Toronto).  For more J/70 North American sailing information

J/105s sailing offshore 
Canadian J/105 Championship Preview
(Toronto, ONT, Canada)- The Royal Canadian Yacht Club will be hosting the 2019 Canadian J/105 Championship on Lake Ontario from September 27th to 29th. The enormously popular J/105 has continued to grow in Toronto and the fleet will be hosting their Canadian Nationals for a fleet of a dozen teams.

The Canadian fleet is surprisingly deep, with two teams that lay claim to four J/105 North American Championship titles between them; Terry McLaughlin & Rod Wilmer’s MANDATE and Jim Rathbun’s HEY JUDE. They are joined by other top crews like Peter Halls’ JAMAICA ME CRAZY, and Kevin Pask’s FULL TILT.  For more Canadian J/105 Championship sailing information

J/70s sailing off San Diego, CA 
J/Fest San Diego Preview
(San Diego, CA)- San Diego Yacht Club is proud to host the 2019 J/Fest San Diego regatta in Southern California – presented by JK3 Yachts- from September 28th to 29th.

J/Boats of all types are invited to the 2019 J/Fest Regatta. Any J/Boat is eligible to participate, and all are welcome to race in One-Design or J/PHRF classes.

The event features two days of racing, a BBQ/party on Saturday evening, and trophy ceremonies on Sunday following racing.

Eighteen teams are entered so far, with one-design classes for J/22s, J/70s, J/105s and J/120s, plus two J/145s entered in the J/PHRF Division.

In the J/105 class, you have class leaders like Rich Bergmann’s ZUNI BEAR, Jan Dekker’s AIR BOSS, and Steve & Lucy Howell’s BLINK participating. And, in the J/120s, many of the top crews are entered, such as John Laun’s CAPER, Ernie Pennell’s MAD MEN, Chuck Nichols’ CC RIDER and John Snook’s JIM.  Sailing photo credits- Paul Todd/  For more J/Fest San Diego sailing information

J/30 sailing on Chesapeake Bay 
J/30 North American Championship Preview
(Annapolis, MD)- The 2019 J/30 North American Championship regatta is being held by the Chesapeake fleet with the Annapolis Yacht Club as host. The regatta is being held September 19th thru 22nd. Thursday Sept 19th will be measurement day, with racing held Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

To date, there are a near record number of J/30 teams participating in the 2019 edition of the J/30 N.A.’s. The teams entered hail from Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey, and Michigan. Notable teams include Bob Rutsch & Mike Costello’s BEPOP, Jim McGinnis’ BLITZ, Steve Buzbee’s BLUE MEANIE, Ron Anderson’s INSATIALBE, Heidi Frist’s SUZIE Q, and Doug & Amy Strykers’ TOTALED MAYHEM.  Sailing photo credits- Paul Todd/  For more J/30 North Americans sailing information

What friends, alumni, and crew of J/Boats are doing worldwide
J/80 One Ocean at Yacht Club Costa Smeralda
(Porto Cervo, Italy)- The 16th edition of the One Ocean MBA's Conference & Regatta, organized by SDA Bocconi School of Management and the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) with the partnership of the One Ocean Foundation (OOF), got underway today. Taking place for the first time in the beautiful setting of the Costa Smeralda, about 400 students and alumni from the world's most prestigious business schools have gathered to experience three days dedicated to sailing and environmental sustainability.

More than 50 teams representing their respective business schools will face two days of racing divided into three categories. The Open J/24 Class will see 14 teams complete two windward-leeward races daily on board International J/24 one-design class sailboats. The teams will be competing for the MBA's Cup Challenge Trophy.

The business schools taking part in the event are: Cambridge Judge Business School, Chicago Booth School of Business, Columbia Business School, ESADE Business School, GOETHE Business School, Harvard Business School, HEC, IE, IESE Business School, IMD, INSEAD, London Business School Simon Male, Manchester Business School, MIP School of Management, MIT SLOAN School of Management, SAUDER School of Business, SKOLKOVO Moscow School of Management, TUCK School of Business, WHARTON School of the University of Pennsylvania, YALE School of Management and SDA BOCCONI School of Management.

The highlight of the event will take place on Saturday, September 21st, with the conference to be held at the Colonna Resort the day after the sailing regatta finishes. The conference was designed jointly by SDA Bocconi and the One Ocean Foundation, thanks to the scientific partnership between the two institutions. Spearheading that effort was Prof. Maurizio Dallocchio, Professor of Corporate Finance at the Bocconi University and Past Dean of the SDA Bocconi School of Management.

"Why future leaders need to face sustainability challenges"
The main focus will be on addressing the sustainability challenges that leaders of the future can no longer ignore. The conference, which will explore the impact of sustainability models and how they can help make the world a better place, will be attended by prominent speakers such as the President of Illycaffè, Andrea Illy, and, in his role as an OOF Ambassador, the explorer Paul Rose, as well as the artist Maria Cristina Finucci, founder in 2013 of the Garbage Patch State.

YCCS Commodore, Riccardo Bonadeo, commented on event: "We are happy to be able to host this regatta for the first time under the umbrella of our One Ocean Foundation and to be able to renew and deepen the collaboration with SDA Bocconi Business School, which from the outset has provided scientific supported to our journey with the One Ocean Foundation. I also think there is no more suitable setting than the one provided by Sardinia, in which to reflect together on issues related to sustainability and above all the preservation of the marine environment. I am sure that these will be three intense days which will provide interesting food for thought for the potential leaders of tomorrow."

The Dean of SDA Bocconi- Giuseppe Soda- commented that, "Sailing is a perfect metaphor for management that allows students from the main international business schools to learn very important lessons. Moreover, the partnership between SDA Bocconi and the One Ocean Foundation makes the value of sustainability a crucial issue for the managers of the future."

"The MBA's Conference and Regatta", added Federico Pippo, lecturer in Corporate Finance for the SDA Bocconi School of Management, "represents a further step on a path that we set out on 12 months ago together with the One Ocean Foundation, combining sport with scientific research. We are very happy with the partnership established with the foundation and the YCCS, which allows us to raise awareness among our MBA students, from all over the world, on the issues of environmental sustainability and the Blue Economy. 'Making the future the cause of our present' should be the motto of the event, to push future leaders to build an efficient society that is compatible with our civilization from an environmental and social point of view."

The MBA's Conference & Regatta is an international sailing event created 16 years ago by the Sailing Club of the SDA Bocconi School of Management. More than 4,000 students and alumni of the Masters in Business Administration have participated in the event to date.  For more MBA Conference & Regatta sailing information
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