Wednesday, August 12, 2020

J/Newsletter- August 12th, 2020

sunset in Chile More and more rays of hope are poking through the ominous clouds of the pandemic world. Recognizing that observing suggested guidelines for social distancing and wearing masks is helping to mitigate the spread/ reduction of all kinds of airborne pathogens, the world as we live in (now basically, an enormous "petri dish") is showing that modifying human behavior one step at a time works. Time will tell.  Recognizing that human behavior can change for the collective good, some parts of the world (be they nations, states, regions, cities) are able to permit sailing events to take place while respecting certain parameters.

In that spirit of things, the RORC (Royal Ocean Racing Club) in the United Kingdom has crafted a unique, fun series called the RORC Summer Series. A number of enthusiastic J/Sailors are participating. Similarly, in the USA, the Ida Lewis Yacht Club is hosting their annual Ida Lewis Distance Race, modifying and adopting its format to satisfy Rhode Island pandemic guidelines. The result? An astonishing record turnout for the event! Who knew!?

Finally, Midwestern sailors in America were the beneficiaries of two very popular events recently. One was Racine Yacht Club's "The Hook Race", an infamous, beautiful 189.0nm race from Racine, north around the Door County Peninsula, finishing in Sturgeon Bay, WI. The race included a harrowing account of an overboard rescue on a J/111. Then, Chicago Yacht Club hosted their annual Verve Cup Offshore for a strong fleet of boats that included one-design classes for J/88s, J/105s, and J/109s.

J/122e sailing off Cowes, England
RORC Summer Series- Part II Preview

(Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- The second of the Royal Ocean Racing Club's Summer Series will be taking place this weekend for pandemic "escapees"! Just kidding, of course. But, for those who have been lucky enough to get out on the water, the feeling of freedom and happiness is inescapable!

The first warning signal is scheduled 09:20 BST on Saturday, 15th August off the famous Royal Yacht Squadron starting line.  An iconic starting line as any in the world.

“With a very changeable weather forecast, the RORC Race Committee will be waiting for as long as possible to determine the course,” commented RORC Deputy Racing Manager, Tim Thubron. “It is likely that the fleet will be starting to the west from the Squadron Line and racing in the area of Poole Bay with the potential of sending the fleet south into the English Channel. The RORC will be keeping all competitors informed of any decision on the course for the race.”

A number of J/Teams are looking forward to a weekend on the water.  In the IRC 1 Class, we find Mike O’Donnell's J/121 DARKWOOD with his team of multiple XOD Captain's Cup winners onboard.

Then, in the IRC 2 Class, Chris Daniel's J/122E JUNO, the RORC 2019 Performance 50 Champion, will be facing an eclectic mix of boats.

Sam Cooper's J/88 TIGRIS will have his hands full sailing against thirteen-boats in IRC 3 Class, the largest in the event. His colleagues include two J/109s- Chris Burleigh's JYBE TALKIN' and Joppe Schepers & Jasper Heilkens' JOMALIJA.

In the six-boat IRC 4 Class is Jerry Freeman's well-known J/105 JULIETTE.

Finally, in the IRC 2H Doublehanded class is the Scheppers/ Heikens J/109 JOMALIJA and Freeman's J/105 JULIETTE. Both scoring in two different classes.

In summary: permitted crew can be up to a maximum of 6 people from any household or two-thirds of a boat’s IRC crew number, whichever is the least. Competitors are also reminded of the United Kingdom government guidance on social distancing and other Covid-19 measures. For more RORC Summer Series information

Ida Lewis YC Newport, RIIda Lewis Distance Race Preview
(Newport, RI)– The Ida Lewis Distance Race scheduled for Saturday, August 15, has a record-breaking 74 entries, indicating how much sailors are itching to compete and embrace any and all event modifications that the pandemic has necessitated. The race, in its 16th year, is hosted by Ida Lewis Yacht Club and starts off Fort Adams at 11 am. Because of CDC guidelines, the skippers’ meeting – typically held at the Club – will be held on the water at 10:15 a.m. (broadcast on VHF Channel 79A).

“It definitely will not be your normal Ida Lewis Distance Race,” said Event Chair Pat Kennedy. “We have been taking it week-by-week, but we started early on with tailoring the event to family and friends (those who can sail together safely) and keeping our plans flexible.”

To that end, the race starts on a Saturday rather than its traditional start on Friday, and 44 boats in the PHRF Aloha class (for smaller boats with PHRF ratings of 55 and higher), Coronet class (for larger boats with PHRF ratings of 54 and lower) and Cruising Spinnaker class will sail a never-before-offered inshore course that tracks 33 nautical miles around Conanicut, Prudence and Patience Islands. “Those teams will not need to sail overnight, which makes it easier for those forced to sail with a smaller crew,” said Kennedy.

The balance of the fleet– an IRC class with 10 boats and a PHRF Doublehanded class with 20 boat – will each sail one of the race’s four traditional overnight offshore courses. The round-trip courses, ranging in length from 112 to 169 nautical miles, are decided by the Race Committee just prior to the race to best fit the weather conditions expected. With turning marks at Castle Hill, Brenton Reef, Block Island, Montauk Point, Martha’s Vineyard and Buzzards Tower, they incorporate some of New England’s most celebrated cruising grounds.

In the IRC Class of ten boats, three J/Teams will be competing for handicap honors, including Steven Levy's J/121 EAGLE, Dan Heuen's J/122 MOXIEE, and Bob Manchester's J/133 VAMOOSE.

The Doublehanded sailors, comprising the largest class this year with twenty boats, and the largest class of its kind in the history of the race, has two J/Crews sailing, including Tom O’Connell’s J/99 FINALE and the American YC's mixed double youth crew on the J/105 YOUNG AMERICAN.

A half-dozen J's will be sailing inside the Bay on the very popular round-the-islands format, a very scenic tour of the Bay! The nineteen-boat PHRF Spinnaker Aloha class has many accomplished teams enrolled, including EC Helme’s J/92 SPIRIT, Bill Kneller’s J/109 VENTO SOLARE, Sam Sylvester's J/29 MEDDLER, and the US Merchant Marine Academy's J/44 VAMP.

The sole J/Team in the eighteen-boat PHRF Spinnaker Coronet division will be Mark Nannini's J/120 SALACIA.

This is the 16th running of the Ida Lewis Distance Race, which is for boats 28 feet or longer and is certified as a “Clean Regatta” by the Sailors for the Sea organization. It begins off Fort Adams and ends just inside Newport Harbor where Ida Lewis volunteers can site the finish line from their clubhouse on Lime Rock before greeting each team on the water with a congratulatory bottle of Prosecco.  For more Ida Lewis YC Distance Race information

German J/70 Sailing League
SAILING Champions League New Schedule Announcement

(Kiel, Germany)- The SAILING Champions League (SCL) has shortened the SCL Series 2020 to one qualifier and the final due to the COVID-19 regulations and the worldwide travel restrictions. From 20 to 23 August, the only qualifier of the 2020 season, will take place in Tutzing, Germany. The final from 15 to 18 October in Porto Cervo, Italy, will be held as planned. The two planned qualifiers in St. Petersburg, Russia, and Mariehamn, Finland, are cancelled without replacement.

“We held on to the three qualifier dates for a long time in the hope that conditions would improve. As things stand at present, however, the worldwide travel possibilities are so limited that we now had to take appropriate steps,” says Anke Lukosch, Project Manager of SCL.

J/70 sailing league- Germany
The winners of the national leagues from 2019 automatically qualify for the final in Porto Cervo at the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda. In Tutzing on Lake Starnberg, as a guest of Deutscher Touring Yacht-Club, the second and third place finishers of each national league will have the chance to fight their way into the top 11 and thus get a ticket to the final.

“The shortened mode is certainly not an ideal scenario, but nevertheless, we're looking forward to welcoming the best clubs from a total of 19 nations to the final in Porto Cervo,” commented Lukosch. “We are grateful for the flexibility of all the sailors and the numerous clubs and their representatives who have worked with us over the last few weeks to plan and prepare every conceivable scenario”.

NOTE- Due to the exceptional situation in this year’s league sailing season, there are still starting places available – a unique chance to enter the competition of the world’s best sailing clubs. Interested sailing clubs irrespective of nationality can send their application now directly to- email-  Sailing Photo credits: SCL/Sailing Energy  For more SAILING Champions League sailing information

RORC starting line on Solent, England
RORC Two-Handed Race to Cherbourg Announcement

(Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- Due to the fact that the RORC had to cancel the entire RORC Offshore Season Point Series due to the restrictions imposed by "pandemic rules", they have adopted some innovative and creating thinking to go sailing!

The RORC has announced that instead of the usual season ending Cherbourg Race, the RORC has confirmed the intention to run a two-handed race to Cherbourg! This race which will start on Friday, 4th September, is in line with current government regulation and has added significance in that the City of Cherbourg will host the finish of the Rolex Fastnet Race for the 2021 and 2023 editions.

RORC Racing Manager Chris Stone has been delighted with the number of teams who are participating in the summer series.

“We were pleased to have 133 boats in ‘Race the Wight’, the first race of our Summer Series and interest in the rest of the series is very strong. We decided to start the two-handed race to Cherbourg on the Friday to give the opportunity for those two-handed teams who are involved in the summer series to participate in the last race of the series which is scheduled for Sunday 6th September.”

The RORC Summer Series consists of three additional races on Saturday 15th August, Saturday 22nd August and Sunday 6th September.  For more information about the Royal Ocean Racing Club and the race program.

J/30 sailors at Annapolis, MD
Chesapeake Bay Finishing Sailing Season Strongly!

(Annapolis, MD)- Due to careful adherence to state and local COVID-19 safety standards, the mid-Atlantic racing season on Chesapeake Bay got a late start in June, yet still attracted a strong turnout with over 30 entries competing in Annapolis Yacht Club’s Wednesday Night Series.

This was followed by the Annapolis YC Annual Regatta in mid-July, which in turn is being followed by the Annapolis Labor Day Regatta held on September 6, the AYC Fall Race to Solomons on September 26, the AYC Double-Handed Distance Race on October 3-4, and the AYC Fall Series held over October 17-18.

“We are running these races in a safe manner with no shoreside social events,” said organizer Dick Neville, “yet the interest seems strong as people want to get out and sail. We have been really pleased with the strong turnouts compared to past years.”

The Storm Trysail Club’s Annapolis Fall Regatta held over October 23-25 will be the culmination of a season of successful big-boat racing on Chesapeake Bay.

J/22 sailing off Annapolis, MD
The Fall Regatta will once again use its popular three-day format of mixed inshore buoy races and short coastal distance races to appeal to those who enjoy proving a variety of skill sets in big boat racing: the quick action of precision boathandling and tactics found in buoy racing combined with a focus on strategy, navigation, and boat speed inherent to success in distance races.

Mastering both sets of skills is important in all ORC championships, so the winning team of each class in this event will be crowned the 2020 ORC East Coast Champion for that class.

Local sailor Ben Capuco has been pleased with the growing local acceptance and use of the ORC rating system. “We have a diverse fleet of boat types here, and with the measurements and rating options available from ORC we have demonstrated the race results are more accurate and fairer compared to use of other systems,” he said. “Using ORC also ensures any entries from out of our area will have fair and predictable ratings to come and compete.”   For more Annapolis Yacht Club regatta information

J/Gear J/Jacket
J/Gear August 20% OFF Special!

(Newport, RI)- The J/Foul Weather Jacket boasts a rugged construction and features taped seams for durability. The jackets are discounted 20% and the special price is active now until August 30th, 2020.

The very nice-looking jacket features the following
  • Zip-off multi-adjustable hood
  • Partial storm flap with metal snaps at top
  • Reflective printed shoulder panels
  • Center front reverse coil waterproof zipper
  • Chest and lower pockets with reverse coil waterproof zipper
  • Adjustable shockcord at hood and hem
  • Outer jacket works with style 9951 liner- offers warmth to 8.0 F!
The J/Class logo of your choice is embroidered on the front. We can also customize with your detail. Perfect for the whole crew!  For more J/Foul Weather Jacket information and to buy now.

Sailing Calendar

Aug 13-16- SAILING Champions League- St Petersburg, Russia
Aug 14-16- Swedish J/70 Sailing League- Ornskoldsvik, Sweden
Aug 15-16- Danish J/70 Sailing League- Aarhus, Denmark
Aug 15-16- J/Fest Newport- Newport, RI
Aug 28-30- J/70 Segel Bundesliga- Wannsee, Germany
Aug 28-30- Under 21 Italian J/70 Sailing League Championship- Rimini, Italy
Sep 5-6- Danish J/70 Sailing League- Skovshoved, Denmark

J/105 sailing off Chicago
Great Sailing @ Chicago YC Verve Cup

(Chicago, IL)- One of the largest course-racing regattas in North America, the Verve Cup is an annual world-class sailing event attracting many national and international competitors. Both the 3-day Offshore Regatta and, later, the 2-day Inshore Regatta host well over 100 yachts off the beautiful Chicago lakefront and skyline.

For this year's edition of the Verve Cup Offshore Regatta, it featured three J/One-design fleets (J/88, J/105, & J/109) along with ORR and PHRF Handicap fleets.  Overall, J/Crews had strong performances in all classes, with just about every one of them enjoying an eight-race series!

J/88 sailing off Chicago
For starters, the J/88 class turned-out in strength, with six boats ponying up to the line. Starting very fast out of the gates with four-straight bullets was Ben Marden's BANTER. After taking a breather overnight, they closed the deal with another day of blistering pace, posting a 3-1-1-2 to simply dominate their class with a total of 11 pts. Finally finding their form late in the regatta was John & Jordan Leahey's DUTCH, posting five 2nds and winning the last race for a total of 18 pts to take the silver. Similarly, it took Andy Graff's crew on EXILE to find their way around the track without getting in trouble on the first day. Then, they showed some of their old form on the final day, closing with at least a 1st and 2nd in their scores to secure the bronze with 27 pts.

In a very similar fashion, the six-boat J/105 class also saw a runaway winner in their class. Breaking out their can of Popeye's spinach was Jon Weglarz's THE ASYLUM. The inmates were on fire! Starting out graciously with a 3rd, they scorched the race track with five 1sts and a 2nd, closing again graciously with a 3rd in the last race for a total of 13 pts. Getting schooled were two teams that are accustomed to being at the top of the leaderboard, Clark Pellet's SEALARK and Mike Sheppard's FLYING PIG. In the end, both teams had good races, taking 1sts, 2nds, 3rds, but not enough to overcome the inmates dominating performance. SEALARK took the silver while FLYING PIG took the bronze.

J/109 sailing off Chicago
Not to repeat a broken record, but the J/109 class of five boats saw a similar scenario as the 88s and 105s. The blistering pace set by Peter Priede's FULL TILT on the first day left many a wide-eyed, slack-jawed competitor mumbling off into the haze of sunset wondering what just hit them. FULL TILT wiped the slate clean in the first four races on the first day- all bullets. However, perhaps celebrating a bit too much Saturday evening, they woke up the next day (perhaps hungover) with a less than stellar 4th place in the initial race. After shocking themselves back to their senses, they managed to close with a 2-3-2 for a total of 15 pts.  The battle for the rest of the podium was very real, with the fight going down to the wire, the ultimate outcome for the podium determined by the final race on Sunday.  Taking the silver was the 2019 Chicago-Mackinac Race winner, Robert Evans' GOAT RODEO, finally finding their mojo on the final day, closing the regatta with two bullets with 21 pts total. Just one point back was the quartet of Miz/ Dreher/ Hatfield/ Neenan on SMEE AGAIN to take the bronze.

In the ten-boat ORR Class, the two J/111s finished neck-and-neck near the top of the leaderboard. Taking third was Rich Witzel's ROWDY with 24 pts, followed by Kevin Saedi and Raman Yousefi's MOMENTUS in fourth place.

Soundly beating everyone in the Saturday ten-boat ORR Distance Race class was Tom Papoutsis' J/133 RENEGADE, sailing away with class honors with a comfortable handicap lead.

Finally, the Saturday PHRF Distance Race class of eight-boats saw Frank Giampoli's J/120 JAHAZI take the silver while Rick Reed's J/35 OB LA DI! powered home into 4th place. Overall, a great outing for J/Crews across the Midwest!  For more Chicago YC Verve Cup Offshore Regatta sailing information

J/160 sailing Hook Race
The Hook Race 2020- Death’s Door Challenge 

(Racine, WI)- The “HOOK”, run the same weekend as the Chicago-Mackinac race, is the Racine Yacht Club’s premier yacht race and 2020 marks its 37th year. It was born from an idea kicked around by Club members who thought a distance contest concurrent with the Chicago-Mackinac race might be able to gain some traction. A race from Racine through “Death’s Door” at the top of the Door County peninsula to a port in Green Bay could be a simpler, lower cost alternative to the ‘Mac and would require less gear. A shorter race, it would allow skippers and crews who couldn’t make the ‘Mac to take less time off and still do a distance race. It would also serve as a way for folks to get their boats north for some cruising while having a little racing on the way. It combines strong competition with the navigational challenge of Death’s Door.

The first HOOK, named by a member who saw a picture of the course and thought it looked like a “hook”, was sailed in 1984 with twelve boats racing from Racine, Wisconsin, to Menominee, Michigan, finishing off Menominee’s marina and the M&M Yacht Club. The finish line at M&M is between a trailer on the marina seawall and a buoy just offshore. Total distance is some 189.0nm.

The Hook Race course
The "Hook" also has a reputation for serving up somewhat challenging, nasty weather at times.  This was one of those years, with two fronts passing over the race track before the fleet could finish. The storms left a trail of broken parts, broken boats, bruised egos, and broken spirits.

With a limit of 100 boats to participate, storms led to significant attrition: 4 withdrew, 5 did not start, and 29 did not finish. Before we get into how some of the J/Crews performed in the race, it's well-worth reading the first-hand account of surviving getting washed overboard.

J/111 sailing offshore
Sarah Pederson, who was swept off the J/111 SHMOKIN’ JOE five miles northeast of the shipping channel in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, describes her hair-raising experience offshore:

"This wasn’t the first time I had participated in “The HOOK” race. The race itself began in 1983, I have participated in 23+ races, and it wasn’t any different than the others I participated in. As in other years, we can’t control the weather and this year wasn’t any different.

The forecast for the weekend was 15-20 knots of winds from the South/Southwest and thunderstorms. To a sailor, that is ideal conditions to “fly” up the lake to our finish.

My sailing experience began early on. Sailing was our “family sport”. Our father introduced all six of us at an early age. I personally have been active in the sport of sailing for 55 years as a racer, instructor, presenter, and supporter of the sport. With my husband, over the past 32 years we have owned and raced boats carrying on the tradition by teaching his two sons how to sail and race.

So, what happened? There were two thunderstorms that we were tracking throughout the day on Saturday, July 18th. The fleet had already sailed through one off Milwaukee. We experienced some of it north of Milwaukee, off Fox Point as we sailed along the northern edge of the storm. From reports, other boats were not as lucky and experienced the full storm causing boats to report dismasting’s.

As we continued our trek north toward Death’s Door Passage off Gills Rock in Door County, Wisconsin we continued to track storm #2. This storm appeared to be stronger and didn’t seem as though it was dissipating throughout the day. We tracked it as it traveled across Lake Winnebago and made its way toward Lake Michigan.

J/109 sailing offshore
As the track came closer, and we could now see the lightning associated with this storm, as a crew, we began to prepare for the storm. Our preparation included reducing our sail area by taking down the mainsail and raising the smallest jib available. We insured that all crew members above (4 crew members) and below deck (4 crew members) were wearing US Coast Guard approved life jackets, a safety harness, 6-foot tether, along with a strobe light, whistle, and sailing knife.

When the storm started to affect the boat, the wind began to increase dramatically. Even though we had reduced sail area we could feel the effects of the increase. Eventually, the wind hit us with a gust of 50+ knots. There were some on the race that reported 60-70 knot gusts. At the time of the gust, there was a wind shift causing the boat to auto-tack and round up leaving the crew now on the low side of the boat.

When this happened a wall of water came rushing down the deck picking me, and another crew member, off the deck. Because we were all wearing a safety harness and six-foot tether, the “theory” is we would have stayed with the boat and would have been “retrieved” by pulling on our tether.

This happened to the other crew member, but not to me. My tether snap shackle at the chest snapped open, for whatever reason, sending me into Lake Michigan in the middle of a thunderstorm, 50+ knot winds, 5-foot waves, 56º water, and 60º air temperature.

As I popped up, I could see the boat that I was just swept off in the distance, still pinned down. Almost immediately, I lost sight of the boat due to the conditions which caused limited visibility.

My first thought was I was grateful the water wasn’t as cold as I thought it would be. I had heard all week the Lake Michigan temperature was unseasonably high (70º) for that time of the year. Unfortunately, as it was explained to me after the incident, the water had a “turnover” from the waves, change in wind direction, and storms which dropped its temperature.

Because I did not have any time frame for the events of the night, I do not know what order I had done any of these actions. I turned on my strobe and pulled out my whistle that was on a lanyard around my neck. I blew my whistle several times, but then realized using the air to blow was challenging. I would use the whistle sparingly. I kicked off my sea boots and crossed my arms across my life jacket and held on.

At one point during the time in the water, I did see two boats in the distance – the J/111 with their spotlight panning the water for me, and the US Coast Guard with their red illuminated side panels. At that point, I felt as though they were moving away from me.

I was wearing a full lifejacket, not an inflatable, and my choice for a full lifejacket was a conscious one. I have said that I feel as though, in my situation, the full lifejacket saved my life.

The waves were measuring 5 feet at the time of the storm and I needed to float like a cork, to bob up and down. As the waves would crash over me, I would rotate my body so that I would take the wave from my back. I learned this early, when I had taken a few mouthfuls of water in my mouth and nose. I didn’t think that would be a good thing for an extended period. When I would rise onto the top of a wave, I would attempt to extend my strobe higher in the air for better visibility.

I chose to wear a regular lifejacket at night for the warmth and comfort factor. I have often said that I don’t think I would want to go overboard at night in an inflatable to reduce the chance for mechanical failure. I do wear an inflatable; I was wearing one during the day.

I realized to survive this; I would need to regulate my breathing. There was a lot of self-talk happening while in the water, the first thing I said to myself was “You know what to do, this doesn’t have to be the end.”

I will say that the self-talk throughout the hour being in the water wasn’t always so positive, but for the most part I had the skills to hang in there. I felt as though my ability to swim – what I have been calling water awareness- was a big part of being able to tread water for about an hour. I knew I had the skills to do this…

I had no idea how long I was in the water until the J/111 that I was sailing on heard my whistle and then saw my strobe. Luckily, the storm had started to move out making visibility greater. This assisted greatly in their ability to find me. The US Coast Guard was right behind them. As I understand, the Coast Guard search pattern is in a square, narrowing in on the last known location. They did their job to perfection.

Once aboard the J/111, I was transferred to the US Coast Guard vessel in a basket with the potential of hypothermia. With Emergency Medical Services waiting for me at the station, I was transferred and then taken to Door County Medical with a diagnosis of mild hypothermia. I didn’t have any other reported injuries, so my treatment consisted of a warming blanket and a bag of warm saline.

This story is about a lot of very skilled, experienced, and prepared sailors who handled an emergency with precision. It is about being prepared. Prepared for a storm, all equipment was accounted for before we even left the dock the morning before with the skipper/owner checking to make sure all crew had all the required safety equipment.

It is about knowing what to do in the water as well as on the boat. This story is about wearing a lifejacket. It doesn’t make any different what you choose to wear. I wouldn’t be alive without it.

This story is about how lucky I was to have the US Coast Guard so close to provide the needed support.


J/111 man overboard survivor
As for the racing the event, virtually all over boats participating lived through a similar experience as Sarah while she was aboard. It was rough going and typical of Midwestern fronts that can unexpectedly intensify as they begin to pass over the lake.  In the J/111 Class, NO SURPRISE won followed by Kevin Saedi & Raman Yousefi's MOMENTUS.

In PHRF 2 Class, J/Crews fared well in the tempestuous conditions. Taking the silver was Bob Klairmont's J/160 SIROCCO, followed by Bob Christoph's J/121 LOKI taking the bronze, and Mike Stewart's J/122 LADY K grabbing fourth position.

The seven-boat J/109 class had tight racing despite the tough weather. Winning was the Douglas/ Maybach duo on COURAGEOUS, followed by Doug Evans' TIME OUT in second and the quartet of Miz/ Dreher/ Hatfield/ Neenan in third.

Winning the eleven-boat PHRF 4 class was Andy Graff's EXILE, followed by Mitch Weisman's J/35 FLYING SPHAGETTI MONSTER in fourth place, Mike Hettel's J/105 GLOBAL NOMADS in 6th, and Dale Brown's J/105 BLACK DIAMOND in 7th.

Winning the eleven-boat PHRF 5 class was Mark Wessel's J/92 RUNAWAY.

Finally, proving again that various J/Designs are tough offshore boats, winning the PHRF Doublehanded division was Ron Otto's J/110 TAKEDOWN 2! Congratulations to all for surviving and, indeed, excelling offshore when Mother Nature throws you a massive curveball!   Thanks for this contribution from Scuttlebutt Sailing Newsletter   For more Racine YC The Hook Race sailing information

What friends, alumni, and crew of J/Boats are doing worldwide
* J/Net Brokerage Specials! Check out our exciting new site for lovingly-owned J/Boats from around the world.

J/95 used sailboat for sale
This J/95 is a rare find, a nicely equipped fresh water used J/95. The boat has been sailed only on Lake Winnipesaukee, NH with its short seasons, and crystal-clear water. The boat has been very lightly used, is well equipped, and in perfect condition. The only way to find a J/95 in better condition, would be to find a new one. The boat has only been sailed 3 years, and never raced. This is a unique find.  For more information about this beautiful J/95 shoal-draft cruiser/ day sailor

J/32 cruising sailboat- women's team
* The resurrection of 1996 J/32 Hull #1 - formally known as “Whistler” in all of the J/Boats brochures - has now completely taken place, according to her new owners- Ellen and Jeff Hunt of Pensacola Beach, FL.  They have been enjoying her and sharing her with their friends, young and old and women alike!

J/32 cruising sailboat
Recently, there now renamed boat called UH-OHHH! took first place in the "Race for the Roses", an all-women’s event to donate to local women's charities. Based on the huge smiles in this photo, it's clear they all had a great time and loved sailing such a comfortable sailboat!

J/35 class cartoon
* J/35s Racing on Lake Erie- Seeking More Team Members!!
"If you are a sailor and would like to be part of the great action going on at NSSC on the 15,16, of Aug., call me. There are J35s going out to race stick against stick in Lake St. Clair. North Star is putting out the red carpet for us. We should have 9, or 10 J35s going at it. Some of the J35s are needing some talent. You are all familiar with the finest boat ever designed. Now is your time to grab the brass ring and join in. It will not get any better than this!

I am opening up an opportunity for some of you past J35 sailors. This type of racing is the most fun and competitive you will ever experience. Bill Vogan, winner of the Port Huron to Mackinaw in his J/35 MAJOR DETAIL, is signing up today.

Some of his crew is stuck in Canada. He will come down knowing that there will be plenty of crew with talent to help him win. Bill Wildner owner of Mr. BILL'S WILD RIDE and 6-time J/35 National Champion is going to have his hands full.

J/35 sailing off Chicago
Dennis Meagher owner of SNIPE has been winning. This is Dennis's first year owning a J/35 and he loves it.

Tim and Amie Ross owners of BLACKHAWK just got their mast back from Canada after it got fixed. They will be looking for crew, they are always in the hunt.

Ed Bayer owner of FALCON is a 4-time National Champion and will need two crew people.

Jim Watts owner of GRIFFIN just finished the Slammer Cup in Tawas, Mi. he took 3rd over all. Jim will be interviewing for positions on his J/35. This is Jim's first year owning a J/35, but he has been racing since he was 7 years old.

Finally, four(!) other J/35 owners need crew- Robert Gordenker owner of TIME MACHINE, Sheri Dufresne owner of FIRE FLY, Cheryl Miller owner of DEAN'S LIST, Don Endres owner of RUMORS, some need your skills."

For more information on sailing J/35s, please contact:
Dean Fitzpatrick
p: 248.528.8440

Marine Weather University
* Going beyond the weather app- Go to Weather University!
Chris Bedford is one of the most respected meteorologists in the sport of sailing. Through his company he has worked in literally every grand prix sailing event – from the America’s Cup to the Olympics.

This year he has teamed up with 2x America’s Cup winning navigator, Peter Isler to create “Marine Weather University” – an online school designed to help sailors raise their weather IQ. Chris has designed a unique curriculum that helps sailors learn how to go beyond their weather app.

Scuttlebutt readers can get 10% off any MWU class or course with the coupon code SBUTTFAM at The next MWU lecture (LOCAL & REGIONAL WINDS) will be presented as a live webinar on Tuesday, August 11 @ 8PM EDT before being posted online with all of MWU class.

Why go to school when Bob Dylan says, “You don’t need a weather man to know which way the wind blows“? Chris explains…

The flood of always changing data, observations, models, and circumstances make the task of weather prediction extraordinarily challenging. Personally, I feel that every forecast I make is obsolete the instant I send it out as there is always new information coming that will alter the forecast.

Every meteorologist has developed their own approach and process to making a forecast. But there are common aspects that every trained forecaster follows before they apply their own spin on the problem. The common process is scientifically based. The individualized portion is the “art” of weather prediction, and that is unique to a particular forecaster.

Meteorology is an established science. Conceptualized as a fluid, the atmosphere follows the laws of physics and chemistry. Chuck Doswell, a renowned severe weather meteorologist, refers to a good forecaster as one that can balance the “triad of components of a healthy science: 1) Theory, 2) Observation, and 3) Modeling.”

If your forecast process is comprised primarily of looking at a bunch of models (aka “what’s your favorite weather app?) and deciding which to believe, then you are a) not forecasting, and b) wasting your time.

Of the myriad of models available (and there are literally over a hundred you could look at to make a single forecast), how do you know which is the “correct” one or, as some people refer to it, “the model of the day.” The goal is to ADD VALUE over the model, and that can only be accomplished by analyzing data (observations and weather charts) and applying your understanding of meteorological theory. Models are a GUIDE in that process (In fact, meteorologists refer to models as “Guidance”).

Weather forecasting is not black and white. Adding value to a weather forecast doesn’t necessarily mean getting the lowest error score. You can have the lowest error score but make one wrong forecast at the wrong time and the impact on the user could be huge. For example, you could predict the maximum racing wind speed and be correct 9 out of 10 times (90%). But the only day you will care about is the one when you were wrong and, as a result, failed to include a race winning sail in your inventory.

The real emphasis is on providing actionable information for a user. Let me explain by example. Let us say the race committee has an established race wind speed limit of 25 knots, above which racing is canned. Predicting whether the wind will exceed 25 knots is key and quite frankly an easier “GO/NO GO” forecast than predicting the maximum wind speed for the day.

But for this particular case, you add value by identifying WHEN during the day that limit will be exceeded AND communicating it effectively. Will it be over 25 knots all day or can some of the day be salvaged for racing? If so, when will that be so that mark-set boats and race crews are not sitting on the water all day waiting or not going out at all only to see a perfectly race-able period missed?

So, as you are sitting down to review the weather before a race, think about your process. Have you reviewed the observations and analyzed the existing state of the atmosphere? Can you identify the processes at play (without models!) and understand their causes and potential outcomes based on meteorological theory?

What is/are the forecast problem(s) for the day? Do the models adequately and consistently reflect the initial state of the atmosphere? Am I respecting and adequately reflecting uncertainty in my forecast and adding value over, say, a model consensus forecast?   Learn more about Peter Isler and Chris Bedford's Marine Weather University here Add to Flipboard Magazine.