Wednesday, October 19, 2011

J/Newsletter- October 19th, 2011

J/122 ARTIE sailing Rolex Middle Sea RaceRolex Middle Sea Race Preview
(Gzira, Malta)- The 32nd edition of the 606-nautical mile Rolex Middle Sea Race begins this Saturday, 22 October from Grand Harbour in Malta. Currently, there are 80 boats entered from 18 countries.  The RMSR is easily one of the most challenging offshore races on the international racing calendar.  Asked whether there is anything about the race in particular that drives sailors to participate over the years, one sailor said, “I don’t think there is one thing-- there are several things. Getting through the Strait of Messina is always a challenge (a.k.a. "the around boot challenge"), you are always relieved to get through it. Next on the way is Stromboli, a volcano that erupts about every 20 minutes or so. For people that haven’t seen it before it is an amazing sight. From there it remains interesting all the way through to the finish, turning left around two enormous rock precipices jutting out from the ocean, and right up to the line in Marsamxett Harbour where the wind is fickle and you are not finished until you are over the line.”

J/111 J-STORM sailing Rolex Middle Sea Race off MaltaLooking forward to their first tour in the RMSR are two new J owners, one sailing the J/111 and the other in a J/122.  Said J/Boats Italy's Paolo Boido- "The first J/111 J-STORM just delivered to owner Massimo Colosimo will race the Middle Sea Race.  They just called me now (Wednesday night), on their way to Malta, reaching with full main and Code 0 in medium/heavy SW at the remarkable average speed of 18 knots!"  Sure sounds like that Italian crew are going to have a fun, challenging time racing around the track.  If there was a race ever purpose-built for any one boat, the J/111 sailed conservatively should do just fine (avoid the corners, my friends!).  In addition, a new J/122 added to the local fleet is OTRA VEZ sailed by Aaron Gatt Floridia / Edward Gatt Floridia from Malta, sailing in IRC 4.

J/122 finishing Rolex Middle Sea Race off MaltaJoining these two "newbies" in the RMSR are perhaps the craftiest and smartest Maltese yachtsmen, the teams on JUNO and ARTIE, both of whom have either won the RMSR overall on handicap and/or won their classes over many, many years.  Leading the charge at least boat-for-boat will be the J/133 JUNO sailed by David Anastasi racing in IRC 3.  Nipping at their heels like a mad hound-dog will be that tenacious team on the J/122 ARTIE, led by renowned Maltese sailors Lee Satariano and Christian Ripard, dueling it out not just for IRC 4 Class honors but for overall honors as well.  If J/News readers recall, in last year's 2010 RMSR, both JUNO and ARTIE were not only class leaders, but overall RMSR IRC leaders literally up to the final 5 miles in the harbor-- which, as everyone knows, can be the "heartbreaker" for many well-sailed, tenacious teams.

Starting Saturday afternoon UTC time, you can track these teams as they make their way around this epic race course.  Sailing photo credits- Rolex/ Carlo Borlenghi.  Please take a look at the official Rolex Middle Sea Race website.

J24s sailing one-design regattaHalloween J/24 East Coasts Preview
(Annapolis, MD)- The 2011 HCM (Hillman Capital Management) J/24 East Coast Championship will be a 21st Century Event like you cannot imagine-- Halloween costumes included!  This Fall Classic will be better than ever. Live race video and commentary on the web, coaching on the water and debriefing (with cocktails) on-shore are part of this year's event.

Nearly SIXTY boats are competing and the entry list keeps growing like kudzu weed every day.  At the moment, forgetting the fact that Ken Read, Brad Read, Terry Hutchinson and Ed Baird, amongst others, are a bit busy with some other sailing events, this year's J/24 East Coasts reads like a "who's who" of current class leaders-- all capable of winning since amongst them are World Champions, North American Champions, Midwinter Champions and Champion of Champions-- did we miss anything here?

In completely random order are teams that you've got to watch out for on the leader-board since they can all wreak havoc at a moments notice.  Amongst them, look for some characters on the yacht called COUGAR with Will Welles and Chuckie Allen brokering traffic behind them.  Class stalwart on BANGOR PACKET, Tony Parker, is working with friend Geoff Ewenson to keep them out of the corners.  Some guy named Tim Healy skippering SAILORS FOR THE SEA hopes to ensure his World's credentials aren't resigned to the ash-heap of history.  Keeping everyone in check at the start line and, most certainly, at the corners of the course are World Team Race Champions and another J/24 not-so-newb sailing WEST MARINE RIGGING- do both Peter and Carol Levesque and Charlie Enright ring a bell (is that fair?)?  Then, don't forget some old characters who are a throwback to the past in the J/24 class (like Mr Parker) but may be far, far more dangerous than ANY scorpion bite you've ever encountered-- a pilot/trainer for Alaska Airlines called Mark Laura may have your number far faster than you can snap themselves into a seat-belt, plus he's got MIT Master of the Universe Number Cruncher Steve Cucchiaro calling statistical analyses and tactical arbitration on every puff and wind shift.  If that weren't enough, fellow Bostonian Mark Hillman (yeah, the regatta sponsor) on WIP has a helluva strong team, so does Dave Van Cleef on CAROLINA GIRL.  Nameless on their boats, but absolutely not nameless in their track records are Mike Ingham (doh, another J/24 Champion?) from Rochester, NY and Mike Hobson (Ultimate Yacht Race Champion) from Annapolis, MD simply making sure the younger kids on the block don't get too uppity.

So, why such a stellar group of J/24 sailors thrashing around the buoys in Annapolis in late October masquerading in all kinds of Halloween costumes trying to remain un-noticed in the parking lots, chain hoists and the yacht club bar?  Well, next year's J/24 Worlds in Rochester, NY are an "open" J/24 Worlds, the first ever.  And, this event in Annapolis is one of the last "district" events you have to sail in to qualify to sail next year's 2012 J/24 Worlds!  That also explains why the "long distance" traveler award can already be named! TEAM SOKOKUMARU with Satoshi Kume from Tokyo, Japan at the helm-- now's never too late to get some practice in for next year!  For more J/24 HCM East Coast Championships sailing information

BMW J/80s sailing match race cup Berlin, GermanyBMW Berlin Match Race Preview
(Berlin, Germany)- What do Jochen Schumann, Markus Wieser, and Bjorn Hansen - the match race world elite have in common?  They're guests competing in Wannsee on J/80s soon!  These World class sailors will participate in the 20th edition of the Berlin Match Race, that was initiated by prominent members of both organizing clubs, Achim Kadelbach (VSaW) and Peter Barnikow (BYC).

Markus Wieser, multiple World, and European Champion is looking forward to challenging his adversary of last year in the finals, Bj√∂rn Hansen from Sweden, who won the 19th Berlin Match Race and currently is 4th in the world ranking list. Mads Ebler, the Danish European match race champion in 2010, will also be fighting for every inch of the race. Undoubtedly the helmsmen William Tiller (New Zealand) and Keith Swinton (Australia) and their crews have had the longest journey to Berlin. Having travelled all the way around the world, returning empty handed is not an option for them. In the fight for the title Markus Wieser will be challenged by the top German sailor Jochen Schumann, twice winner of the America´s Cup and Olympic Games, who would also like to reclaim the victory and prize money (totaling about 20,000 Euro)!  The race will be sailed on J 80 class boats from 2nd to 6th November.  For more BMW Berlin Match Race sailing information, please visit the BMW Sailing site

J/111 sailing one-design - offshore ultimate racerNEW! J/Fest Winter Circuit
(Ft Lauderdale, FL)- Great news for J/Sailors worldwide!  A "J/Fest Winter Circuit" has been developed for Winter 2012 in Florida that encompasses J/111s, J/105s, J/109s and larger J's (J/120s, J/122s, J/124s, J/44s).  To that end, a regatta schedule for "big boat" J sailors that includes sailing once per month all winter includes the following dates and events:

1. Lauderdale- Key West- Jan 12-13- http://www.lyc.org (optional)
2. Quantum Key West Race Week- Jan 15-20- http://www.premiere-racing.com
3. J/Fest Ft Lauderdale- Feb 18-19- President's Day- http://www.bahiamarhotel.com/marina
4. J/Fest Ft Lauderdale- Mar 16-18- St Patrick's Day- http://www.bahiamarhotel.com/marina
5. Charleston Race Week- Apr 19-22- http://www.charlestonraceweek.com

So far, several J/111s, J/105s, J/109s, J/120s and J/122s have expressed interest in a winter circuit based out of easy-to-access deep-water facilities in Fort Lauderdale- the Bahia Mar Marina and Hotel complex will be the base of operations for the regattas.

Racing will be one-design (for fleets over 6 boats) and J/PHRF handicapping based on a TCF (time-on-time) correction using the J/Boats PHRF table- a guideline that can be reviewed here- http://www.jboats.com/sailboat-phrf-handicap.htm  Any questions?  Contact Rod J, his contacts are on the J/PHRF page.  An NOR will be posted soon!

A complete, professional "concierge service" has been developed to make it a "turn-key", affordable proposition for J owners from Chicago to Houston, Newport to Halifax and Annapolis to fully transport their boats, launch/ haul and have their boats "ready-to-sail" at each location- cleaned, polished, rigged, literally ready-to-race.

Fly down with the crew, hop aboard and off you go, "no worries", ready to go sailing!  Daily awards will be given for each event as well as overall and at the end of the J/Fest Winter Circuit, awards will be given for best three of five results at the conclusion of Charleston Race Week.

For more information on the J/Fest Winter Circuit including "all-in budgets and costs", please contact J/Boats at Ph. +1-401-846-8410 or email- info@jboats.com.  Or, call your local J/Dealer for more information.  Sailing Photo credit- Onne Van der Wal

Sunset- sailing the ultimate romantic evening on a JJ/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

It was a busy week for J sailors across three continents and six countries, perhaps just another week of sailing for enthusiastic crews wishing to experience anything Mother Nature can throw at them-- and boy, did she ever throw a few curve balls across race courses around the world.

Starting in the America's, the Pan Am Games started with teams from Canada, USA, Brazil and Argentina leading the charge in the "Pan Am J/24s" racing on Bahia de Banderas off Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.  Just northeast of them a hugely competitive and strong fleet of J/22s just finished sailing their J/22 Worlds in the fabulously fun place called "Norleans", a.k.a. New Orleans and its even more famously gracious host club- Southern YC on Lake Ponchartrain.  Just around the corner on the Gulf of Mexico, Lakewood YC in Houston hosted their 25th Harvest Moon Regatta-- a very, very fun event for most sailors in warm, brown waters.  Up near the Canadian border were a bunch of J/24 sailors getting it done on the water, sailing a 2012 J/24 Worlds qualifying event on Lake Minnetonka, MN hosted by Wayzata YC-- called the "Ugotta Regatta Wayzata" (almost rhymes, eh?).  Out East, surviving what amounted to a four-day windstorm were J/109s racing their North Americans off Annapolis, MD and in the capable hands of the Annapolis YC.  Even further East were a fleet of J's racing the annual Greenport Ocean Race co-hosted by the China YC and the Old Cove YC-- it was a windy one for sure!  Traveling across the big Atlantic Pond, the RORC Season Championship awards saw the J/111 and the J/122 walk off with some well-deserved silverware.  The Garmin Hamble Winter Series on the Solent, England continued with J/97s putting the hammer down on their breathless rivals!  As usual, the J/80s saw a action across the Continent with the J/80 German Open hosted by Flensburg Sailing Club in Flensburg, Germany; the KSSS (Royal Swedish) club hosting the conclusion of the J/80 Dynamant Cup sailing series off Stockholm, Sweden.  Down in Italy off the picturesque town of Chiavari, the J/80s showed the "open" fleet in the Dollorso Cup how to get it done! Moving this whistle-stop tour Down Under, it's pretty clear the new J/111 JAKE is giving lots and lots of top Sydney offshore sailors huge, huge headaches.

Read on! The J/Community and Cruising section below 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:

Oct 9- Dec 4- Garmin Hamble Winter Series- Hamble, England
Oct 14-16- J/80 China Fall Regatta- LiuZhou, GuangXi, China - http://www.cnmcr.com/
Oct 28-30- J/24 East Coast Championship- Severn Sailing Associaiton, Annapolis, MD
Oct 29-30- J/Fest Southwest- Houston, TX
Oct 29- Nov 6- Hamburg Boat Show (J/108, J/80)- Hamburg, Germany- http://www.hanseboot.de
Nov 4-7- Xiamen Boat Show (J/80)- Wuyuan Bay, Xiamen, China
Nov 10-13- J/80 French Nationals- St Cast, France- http://www.classej80france.com/
Nov 11-19- J/24 Worlds- Buenos Aires, Argentina- http://www.j24worlds2011.org.ar/

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

J/22 Worlds- sailing  around markJohnston Wins J/22 Worlds
(New Orleans, LA)- Rob Johnston of Heath, TX won the Allstate Sugar Bowl J/22 World Championship by six points over Jim Barnash of Rochester, NY with a fifth-place finish on the last race of the regatta. Racing hull #203, team DIESELSNACK sailed a consistent regatta with all top 20 tallies, dropping a 19 in race 3. Sixty-four boats competed in the event in New Orleans, LA, and 12 races were completed.

Barnash went into the last day of the four-day regatta in the lead but finished 26th to Johnston’s third in the first race. He came back strong, however, with a win in the second race while Johnston finished 12th bringing the championship into play on the last race. Johnston’s fifth place in the last race of the regatta was enough to earn him the winner’s trophy.

Allan Terhune from Arnold, MD rounded out the top three with 103 points overall, including two firsts in the last two races Friday. Saturday’s race winners were Zak Fanberg, Barnash and J. Dwight LeBlanc, III.

On the first day, competitors were postponed on shore due to a lack of wind, and the first gun was rescheduled for 11:55 a.m. CT out of Southern Yacht Club. During the day’s races, breeze started at 5-8 knots but decreased throughout the afternoon, with sunny skies and temperatures around 80 degrees.

J/22 one-design sailboat- sailing at WorldsLocal Benz Faget scored two bullets and a sixth-place tally to lead the fleet.  With crew Randall Richmond and Thomas Sweeney, Fats stood with a solid lead of 8 points.  Jim Barnash, helming his Rochester, NY team, had 14 points in second place; Fred Hunger from Cleveland, OH was in third with 23 points.  Faget opened the regatta with a victory in Race 1, trailed by a fellow New Orleans boat skippered by Zak Fanberg in second and Barnash in third. Race 2 saw another local winner in Richard “Boo” Heausler, followed by Hunger and then Southern Yacht Club commodore J. Dwight LeBlanc, III. In the day’s final, race, Faget took the victory again, with Brant Koepke (Texas) in second and Nick Turney (Ohio) in third.

On the second day of racing, competitors enjoyed a gorgeous day of racing on Lake Pontchartrain with breeze at 10-15 knots, brilliant sunshine and temperatures staying around 80 degrees.  It seemed the "playbook" again favored New Orleans native Benz Faget, who held on to his first-place position. With consistent finishes in the top 12 (dropping the 12), Team Fats tallied just 26 points over the first seven races of the regatta. With crew Randall Richmond and Thomas Sweeney, Faget was four points ahead of Texan Terry Flynn who registered consistent scores of 3, 5, 5, 1 (with a drop from day 1 of 18 points).  Max Scott opened day two with a victory in Race 4, pursued by Chris Doyle in second and Flynn in third. Race 5 was won by Travis Odenbach, with Faget and Chad Wilson in the next two slots. Rob Johnston took the top position in Race 6, trailed by Chris Doyle and Dave Kerr, who just returned to the race course after a repair needed from an incident in the day’s first race. In Thursday’s fourth and final contest, Flynn nailed first place, and Zak Fanberg and Mike Farrington followed.

The J/22 Class extends appreciation to PRO Hank Stuart and his Race Committee, the staff of Southern Yacht Club and all sponsors including the title sponsor Allstate Sugar Bowl.  For more J/22 Worlds sailing information

J/109 one-design racer cruiser sailboat- sailing in Annapolis, MDGUT FEELING Wins J/109 North Americans
(Annapolis, MD)-  The forecast this past weekend for any sailor north of Cape Hatteras along the northeastern seaboard of America was simply this- "fresh to frightening" weather conditions, winds 15-30 knots (thereabouts) and, depending on "fetch", seas could be huge (e.g. ginormous).  Fortunately, the J/109 competitors sailing off Annapolis only had to worry about a 1-2 nm "fetch" from the SSW and waves under 3-5 feet, not bad considering what fishermen were facing offshore-- nearly four days of gale force 25-45 knots winds and massive seas.

As expected, the extraordinarily competitive East Coasts during Rolex Block Island Race Week were a precursor for this year's J/109 NA's.  The host Annapolis YC in Annapolis, MD did a remarkable job to fire-off eight races over the weekend in the challenging conditions.

J/109s sailing one-design- a racer cruiser sailboatIn the end, it was Ted Herlihy's GUT FEELING team (pictured above) from New Bedford YC that showed remarkable consistency, garnering a 1-2-2-4-5-2-1-8 for 25 pts to win the regatta by 12 points.  Past champion Rick Lyall on STORM from Cedar Point YC was sailing a solid series and were an easy contender for the championship until they had to retire in race 5, their 4-5-3-1-16/DNF-1-5-2 for 37 points was strong enough to finish second.  The dark horse amongst this year's event had to be CAMINOS, Don and Cristina Fillipelli's crew from Devon YC.  Somewhat like Lyall's STORM team, the CAMINOS team were also strong contenders with a solid 3-1-1-3-3-8-3-16/DSQ, but their last race DSQ knocked them off the top of the podium, finishing just one point back from second with 38 pts.  Other than a 10th and 9th in races 5 and 7, Bill Sweetser's Annapolis YC team on RUSH were also in the hunt with a record of 2-4-8-7-10-3-9-1 for 44 pts.  Craig Wright's AFTERTHOUGHT sailed a very steady regatta to accumulate a 6-6-4-6-1-4-6-14 for 47 pts.   For more J/109 North Americans sailing informationSailing photo credits- Dan Phelps.

J/80s one-design sailing on Solent, Hamble, EnglandA Smashing Day for J/97s
Hamble Winter Series Update
(Hamble, England)-  After the first weekend's boisterous conditions, light winds saw in the 2nd weekend of the Garmin Hamble Winter Series, with the conditions giving all classes some sparkling sailing and nail-bitingly close racing.

This weekend featured the Hamble Big Boat Series on both days, with top-class racing for everyone. Thanks to Rule 26 who sponsored the event. Saturday dawned with 8-12 knots of breeze from the east, expected to shift to the right during the day. Four races were run, with a windward-leeward course set across the North Channel from a committee boat at East Knoll

By contrast, Sunday morning saw thick fog, with ships sounding their way slowly up Southampton water with foghorns blaring. PRO Jamie Wilkinson set an hour's postponement to let the fog clear, later postponed by a further hour when ABP, backed up by a competitor in a RIB reported that the Southampton Water was impassable. Every cloud has a silver lining, however, and this wasn't an unpopular move as it allowed competitors to watch the end of the rugby.

By 1000 the fog began to clear to reveal a millpond, with zero wind – but by 1230 a light breeze had built from the WSW and the race committee hurriedly set a course for all classes, with starts combined to get racing underway as soon as possible.

After a false start, the wind built to 10 knots during the race, which meant that all classes converged on the leeward mark at once, with large gains for the taking for those with an inside overlap.

IRC 3 was dominated by J/Boats, the top five slots all being held by Js! The J/97s JIKA JIKA and INDULJENCE were first and second respectively whilst David Greenhalgh and John Taylor's J/92 J-RONIMO was third. Fourth was Tony Mack's J/97 McFLY and fifth was Andy Howe & Annie Kelly's J/92s BLACKJACK.  Special mention should go to J/97 INDULJENCE which was out for the second time with new owners, Nick and Adam Munday.  Adam helmed his Dad’s new boat and he’s a fab sailor. At the age of only 19, Adam comes from good J sailing pedigree, having been part of the J/109 European Champ winning crew on Dave and Kirsty Apthorp's J-DREAM.  So far, the J/97 JIKA-JIKA is dominating the proceedings with three straight bullets and the J/97 INDULJENCE is just off the pace only one point out of second!

Paul Griffith’s JAGERBOMB won the J/109 class with David McLeman’s OFFBEAT in second and Richard and Valerie Griffith’s OUTRAJEOUS took third in Class.  Overall standings so far continue to see OUTRAJEOUS in first with a 1-1-4 record for 6 pts; David and Mary McGough's JUST SO in second with a 5-2-3 record for 10 pts; and JAGERBOMB just one point back from them.

In IRC 1 Class, the good Doctor Ivan Trotman continues to be a force amongst the leaders on his J/122 JOLOU with his 1-4-5 record to be currently lying 2nd in class.  Ken Lowes J/122 GHOST is showing improvement every race  and with his current progress may be winning by next week!  So far GHOSTS record of 9-8-4 for 21 pts is promising.  The big curve that got thrown at the IRC 1 Class was a the presence of the J/111 JENGA VI being sailed by Chaz Ivill, scoring 2nd in their first race.  David and Kirsty Apthorp also started  sailing their new J/111 J-DREAM and are working on their speed and crew work.  More good things to come next week!

In IRC 0 Class, racing the Black Fleet are four J/133s with the top J/133 being Jackie and Robert Dodson's JERONIMO, followed by Neil Martin's JAMMY DODGER second, Dave Ballantyne's JINGS third and Ian Dewhirt's JUMP in fourth.  In IRC handicap, the Dobson's JERONIMO is lying in fifth just 9 pts back from second overall.

Next weekend sees the second Autumn Championships weekend, with racing for J/109 and J/80 one design classes on both days, plus the third Winter Series race day on Sunday.   Sailing photo credits- Paul Wyeth   For more Garmin Hamble Winter Series sailing information

J/111 sailboat- sailing Sydney Harbour, AustraliaAustralian J/111 JAKE Proves Good Design Matters
(Sydney, Australia)-  In what many sailors were reporting as a frustrating day on the race course with light winds and lumpy seas off Sydney’s North Head, Ray Entwistle’s new J/111 JAKE had a tremendous day out sailing. Here is Ray's report:

"Granted it was a light fickle day, with the wind swinging from north east to north west from 2 to 8 knots and a very lumpy seaway with 1.5 knots of current running south 3 miles offshore.  Despite the J/111 being one of the smallest boats in the 19 boat division you just know you are going to have a good day when you leave the Sydney Harbour start line in Watson's Bay and go around the top mark 4 miles offshore not far behind the TP 52 and just behind the new Ker 40 and Sydney Ker 43. The J/111 just sliced through the choppy water and pointed high!

After the first lap of the windward leeward course we were already leaving 44.7s, DK43s, First 40s and 45’s, A40’s, Cookson 12s, and large X yachts a long way behind.  We, like most, were hoping for a shortened course on the second lap as we could the see TP52 extending on every leg. However, unbeknown to us (due a last minute change of support boats because of a mechanical issue) the replacement support boat did not have an ‘S’ flag to shorten the course so the full 3 lap course had to be sailed.

On the last beat we heard the retirements coming in over the VHF radio as the boats a long way back began to realize they would time out and not finish the course.  We were surprised as some of the 38 to 45 footers behind us started to call it day....we were going to make it with ease. On the last rounding of the top mark, spinnaker flying and crew calling the angles perfectly to enter Sydney Harbour we still had many things to smile about. As we passed the bottom mark (which was no longer part of the course for us as we were on our way back to Watson's Bay and the finish line) we actually lapped a First 40 and an Archambault 40. Not surprisingly, they called it a day and followed us back into the harbour.

The J/111 finished 5th on the water and 2nd on IRC beating the new Sydney Ker 43 and Ker 40 by 7 and 8 minutes and a racing carbon/kevlar 51 footer by an astonishing 26 minutes.

We would like to thank our crew for their constant perseverance and Ian Short for yet another superb set of sails which have been devastatingly quick in all conditions, and of course to all the Johnstone’s for another stunningly designed boat!  Thanks, Ray"

J/111 one-design sailboat- sailing past Fastnet Rock- in RORC's Rolex Fastnet RaceJ/Teams Win Silver in RORC Season Championships
(London, England)- It was a tough year.  It was a Fastnet year.  And, an RORC 600 year.  It was not going to be easy for any boat participating in this years RORC Seasons Points Championships to easily walk off with all the silverware and pickle-dishes.  Nevertheless, some J/Teams prevailed despite some harsh and very, very challenging conditions offshore- some absolutely not within the "wheelhouse" of where these J/Teams can succeed, if not dominate offshore.  Again, this year's series points to the fact that a good all-around design is critical to offshore success-- too "type-formed" and you win big in one event and get crushed in the next.  Such was the case this year.

In the IRC Classes the best five offshore races are counted towards the RORC Season's Points Championship. These were heavily contested and in some of the classes, the results were undecided until after the Cherbourg Race, the last race of the season.  For the J/Teams, "Congratulations" are in order for those that persevered and prevailed against the best offshore sailors from Western Europe.  Here's the scoreline for these J/Teams:
- Alan Paul Trophy - Consistent High Performance in IRC Overall: ARABELLA- J/111 - Niall Dowling (GBR)
- Emily Verger Plate - IRC Two Overall-  JOOPSTER- J/122 - Neil Kipling (GBR) and in the same division Niall's team on ARABELLA finished 5th overall.

In addition to the winners, special mention should be made of the following performances:
- IRC Overall- the J/111 ARABELLA sailed by Niall Dowling was 2nd overall behind the custom Ker 46 Tonnere- the overall winner.  Just behind them was the J/122 sailed by Neil Kipling.
- In IRC One- the J/133 JINGS sailed by David Ballantyne was 5th overall, just 40 points from first overall.  In other words, a top ten finish in any of two more races would have put them in contention for top two overall!
- In IRC Three- J Teams took 50% of the top 10!  They included Nikki Curwen's J/105 VOADOR in 3rd, Nick Martin's J/105 DIABLO-J in 4th, Tor McLarens' J/109 INSPARA in 6th, Greg Nasmyth's J/109 JARHEAD in 7th and Robin Taunt's J/109 JIBE in 9th.  Good show by all!
- In IRC Doublehanded- the series could've gone anywhere in the last two races.  In the end, Nick Martin's J/105 DIABLO-J nipped Nikki Curwen's J/105 VOADOR for 5th and 6th, respectively.  It was a "nip-and-tuck" battle until the end of the series for the thirty-plus hardy group of souls and sailors in this fleet.

The net, net of the 2011 RORC summer sailing season is that it takes solid, easy-to-sail, all-around boats to succeed in the RORC events.  Again, with primarily all amateur/ corinthian teams, the fleet of J sailors not only had fun but won their fair share of silverware, too.  Nothing like adding a few more pickle-dishes to the serving inventory at home!  For more RORC Offshore Season sailing information.

J/24s one-design sailboats- starting lineJ/24 Pan Am Games Update
(Puerto Vallarta, Mexico)- USA team Manager Dave Johnson provided this recent update on the American sailing team and, specifically, the American J/24 Team.  By the way, the USA Pan Am Games team is packed with current/ former J/24 sailors, including Augie Diaz (Snipe), Lutz Brothers from Texas (Lightning), Foerster (Sunfish), so are the other Pan Am Teams!

Said Dave, "Today was a great start to the Pan Am Games for Team USA. All three courses sailed today in 6-12 kts breeze and lots of sun. On the far course Charlie (J/24, Lightning, Snipe) got the first race off with consistently more breeze. The J/24 team of Mollicone, Rabin, Becker, and Abdullah went 1-1 as their boat speed proved superior on the long course.

"We really used speed to our advantage," said John Mollicone, skipper for the J/24. "The races are really long, even longer than Worlds."  With a much smaller fleet of boats in the Pan Am Games, John pointed out that keeping your competition in check is critical in the long races.

And what John said makes sense because one boat going out on a flyer could be a hero or a zero, as they say. In their 7-boat fleet, one boat is nearly 15% of the fleet.

Our Lightning Team of the Lutz brothers (Jody - skipper, Jay - crew) and Greg Thomas also sailed a top performance today, going 1-3 and tied for the lead with Brazil. They too had long races today but their fleet was intense. With teams not leaving any good 'lanes' open, having clear air and a clean lane is important.

Other good performances include four-time Olympian, Paul Foerster, sitting atop the Sunfish fleet with a 1-2. Augie Diaz and Kathleen Tocke finished 2-4 in the Snipe class while Paige Railey went 5-1 in the Radial.

For more USA sailing team information:
USA team: http://tinyurl.com/USSTAG-Pan-Am-2011
Event website: http://www.guadalajara2011.org.mx/ENG/01_inicio
Results: http://tinyurl.com/PAG-2011-results

J/80 one-design sailboat- sailing Stockholm, SwedenHAPPY wins J/80 Dynamant Cup
(Stockholm, Sweden)- It was in brilliant sunshine and winds of 4-6 metres/second for the last and final J/80 regatta of the year.  A total of nine J/80's were on the starting line at 10am for the first start.  What followed was a brisk tempo with short and quick races for everyone. Many boats were leading the various races with many changes at the top due to the premium put on not only boatspeed off the starting line but good boat-handling as well!

The winner was TEAM HAPPY with John Berg at the helm with 53 points.  John became the proud winner of the gift card for 6,000 kronor (sponsored by the I.T. company DYNAMANT)!!  Before this last regatta, the Dynamant Summer Series was evenly matched between the teams DYNAMANT and HEAVY DUTY, with the outcome of the last regatta determining who would get 2nd and 3rd.  In the end, DYNAMANT's solid, consistent sailing decided the outcome, giving them second oval with 48 points and a giftcard of 3,000 kronor!  Finishing third was HEVY DUTY with 46 points.

This year's "Rookie of the Year" was awarded to TEAM VICTORY, which debuted in mid-season and finished well in the last few regattas. That bodes well for next season!

At the Awards Presentation, prizes were also awarded to the three boats who have distinguished themselves for their commitment to sailing the Dynamant Cup Series-- those teams were  PARBELU, HEAVY DUTY and HAPPY-- none of them have missed a regatta!  Their hard work and perseverance was rewarded handsomely, each team were given HUGE, well-filled bags of chocolate and coffee from Marabou and Gevalia.  Yummy!  For more "Happy" Dynamant Cup sailing results

J/24 Bubbles sailing team- win Ugotta Regatta WayzataBUBBLES Wins Ugotta Regatta Wayzata!
(Lake Minnetonka, Minnesota)- J/24 Fleet #1 is the first and oldest J/24 fleet in the world. They held their Ugotta Regatta last week at Wayzata Yacht Club, one of the oldest clubs in Minnesota.  Chairman Josh Bone sent in his report of the event.

"We had a great showing of out-of-town boats and regatta participation was up 30% over last year for the Ugotta on October 7-9. A special thank you to: 2XS, MIJAH, STRANGE CREW, CONTEXT, “2”, U-LA-LA and INSATIABLE. Boats came from Duluth, Chicago, and other parts of the Midwest. One skipper came from Florida, another from Chicago and there was even one crew member from Spain! We even have our very own Olympic Medalist racing out there, Billy Allen. This is THE place to be. While Scows are known here, there is also a great keelboat scene. We also have the only real racers’ party of the year up here (I say that to challenge others to step up their game!).  We do a full bar (out of an old E-Scow, no less!), sponsored beer and a community shrimp boil, no fancy tablecloths for us, and all for 10 bucks per person.

The J/24 district qualifier for the 2012 J/24 Worlds had 20 competitors and excellent race management from our inspiring PRO Blake Middleton – a true racers’ PRO. Blake had been on a whirlwind tour of the globe just before the event, and we were lucky to have him back on Lake Minnetonka.

Our Race Committee and competitors raced 5 races on Saturday in winds from 7kts to 17kts. Sunday was very light in the morning. The call was made to wait. The wind came in with 10 minutes to spare on the limit. The race was won by Terry Neff and his crew aboard "BUBBLES". Job well done Terry! It was in the 80's both days.

This race was also a true tiebreaker between BUBBLES and ZOOM. Zoom had some issues with the pin due to an unforeseen additional left shift. It was awful to see them get tangled with the mark in such an important race. Terry was above him. Terry bought the left side big, followed closely by John Heaton on USA 592 Mijah. Motorhome went right, or really just on port because the left was really big for a long time. Bubbles rounded in first, Motorhome in 2nd, Mijah in 3rd. Zoom was really deep, but blasting thru the fleet, always a contender. Motorhome was passed by Mijah at the first leeward gate. Bubbles had launched, at one point I couldn't see them. Then we saw them on the 2nd downwind leg, 250 yards ahead of us. We started to open a delicious Surly Furious, when a puff nearly knocked us over. The wind had gone very hard to the right, 25 - 30 degrees. Bubbles rounded the right gate in first, Mijah followed in second, and Motorhome went to the left gate. It was a thrilling race. At the final cross Bubbles crossed Motorhome by only 2 boat lengths. Motorhome cheered for them when the gun went off, continued to hike for a 2nd place in the race. Mijah was 3rd. Guess who was 4th? ZOOM!

BUBBLES won the regatta by 2 points. Picture is attached of them with their trophy full of delicious Surly Brewing Co.'s amazing product.  The "Spanking Award" went to co-winners Mark Soya and Dave DeSanto (they were very bad boys)!

"We were fortunate to have good wind and the boat was set up for it. And we had the benefit of sailing districts in Maine (40+ boats) a few weeks before. I got the bad starts out of my system. You need to have things go your way. And that's what happened." - Terry Neff (Owner and Helmsman of BUBBLES). BUBBLES crew was: Terry Neff, Sean Delaney, Paula Neff, Mark Oppen and Paul "Jake" Jacobs.

WYC hopes to see you all again next year. They also welcome you to the 2013 J/24 National Championship!  Thanks for contribution from Sailing Anarchy-  Photos from Mark Puariea

J/80 sailboat- sailing Flensburg, GermanyTeam PIKE Wins German J/80 Open
(Flensburg, Germany)- Flensburg Sailing Club hosts the annual Flensburg Sailing Week every autumn and for the last few years has also hosted the FSC Deutsche Open for the J/80 class.

Over the three days in mid-September, sixteen J/80s managed to get in some great sailing with the weather, in general, cooperating nicely for the three days.

Day 1 - The first two races were sailed at about 8 knots of wind, with PROCEEDS DIVA winning the first two. In the third race of the day the wind was barely strong enough for a race, this nerve-sapping race could ultimately decide the leaders for the first day.  At the end of the day, PROCEEDS DIVA was first, just two points behind them were the past winner of the regatta- Team PIKE- and third was Gordon Nickel skippering ANEGADA from Bremen.

Day 2 - At 2-6 knots, the two races on Saturday were long, long races with many exciting changes in positions.  After several hours of postponement the fleet sailed what some sailors thought were "lottery" races.  Nevertheless, Team PIKE took advantage and won two races, moving themselves into first overall. Behind him was a complete turnover in the standings.  Lying 2nd was Sven Vagt sailing CAMPAIGN and third was Kiel sailor Martin Menzer.  PROCEEDS DIVA and ANEGADA dropped to 4th and 5th, respectively.

Day 3 Final Day- On Sunday morning the teams were excited about the great sailing weather for the last three races: a constant WNW wind around 10 knots with brilliant sunshine.  Team PIKE took a 1st and 2nd in the first two races and didn't have to sail the race last.  PROCEEDS DIVA sailed to a 3-1-1 to secure 2nd overall, ANEGADA persevered and took third overall and the surprise was the strong showing of the Polish team MOONRAKER, snagging 4th place in from of Team CAMPAIGN that finished 5th.

In conclusion, it was an exciting event for all and some great sailing.  It was also the third title for Team PIKE, having regained their former performance from previous seasons.  For more German Open J/80 sailing information

J/80 sailboat- sailing off Chiavari, ItalyJ/80 Wins Dollorso Open Cup
(Chiavari, Italy)-  This past weekend, the Yacht Club Chiavari hosted their annual Dollorso Open Cup with over seventy boats participating in ORC, IRC and Multihull classes.

With refreshments and award ceremony in the presence of the Family Dollorso, Aldermen of the City of Chiavari and Mr. Segalerba Rombolini and representatives of TCI, it was the J/80 JENIALE! sailed by Massimo Rama from YC Chiavari that won the huge Open Class!  Massimo receive the much revered trophy, the Silver Plaque Nicholas Dollorso.

The first day of racing took place on Saturday in sunny weather, calm seas and extremely variable breeze. The second day of racing, the return in Chiavari, took place on Sunday, in a beautiful summer day, with calm seas and gentle breezes-- as a result, not many boats finished within the time limit.  For more Copa Dollorso sailing information

J's sailing Greenport Ocean RaceJ/105s Sweep Greenport Ocean Race
(Greenport, New York)- The Greenport Ocean Race is held every year in the fall as the final offshore event for Long Island Sound racers on the eastern end of Long Island.  It's hosted by the Chinese YC and the Old Cove YC.

This year's event was about as "epic" an event as many have recalled, with winds blowing 15-30 knots for basically four straight days.  When the racing started on Saturday, the PRO on the RC wisely decided to shorten course and keep the fleet inside Long Island Sound instead of sending them into 15 foot crashing waves not the far offshore from the infamous "Race"- that body of water with 4-6 knot currents against 15-30 kt winds is no picnic!

Reveling in the heavy going were the J/105s.  Again, Mike LaChance and the crew of DARK'N'STORMY (appropriately named, I might add) led the sweep of PHRF 3 with the other J/105s.  Second was Tim O'Brien on the J/105 ROPEBURN and third was the J/105 ALLIANCE sailed by Steve Guyer.  As a result, the oval Brooklyn Ocean Challenge Cup was awarded to Team  DARN'N'STORMY for the fourth year in a row!

In PHRF 2, Jason Richter's much-traveled J/35 PALADIN finished second and just behind in third was Jim Vos' J/109 SKOOT and fourth was Steve Kenny's GOSSIP.  In PHRF 1, the J/111 BRAVO sailed by Sedgiwck Ward finished just out of the money in fifth.  For more Greenport Ocean Race sailing results

Dolphins, sailing the ultimate offshore race in Texas under harvest moonJ's Cruise Harvest Moon Regatta
(Houston, TX)-  The annual fall "big boat" regatta in Houston, the Harvest Moon Regatta, is hosted by one of the Houston area's famously gracious yacht clubs, the Lakewood YC on Galveston Bay.  The HMR event has attracted a loyal following over its 25 year history and this year was no exception.  Great sailing weather (generally) and awesome hospitality (always!) makes for a fun event.  The race is basically sailing from the Galveston jetties to Port Isabel for race #1, then back up the coast to Port Aransas (Port A) as race #2. Then there was Port Aransas to inside the Galveston jetties for race #3 and on to the Seabrook marker two for race #4.

In the huge PHRF Bacardi Racing fleet, thirty-one boats showed up for local bragging rights in the offshore racing community.  In the end, the J/120 AEOLUS sailed by Jim Liston was the top dog in the J sailing clan, getting third overall.  JB Bednar's J/105 STINGER stuck it in the top ten, snagging a fifth overall.  Albrecht Goethe's J/109 HAMBURG was sixth.

The "cruising boat" divisions are even "huger".   The Non-Spinnaker class had 108 boats.  The Cruising Spinnaker class had 30 boats.  Right at the top was Walter Caldwell's J/40 shoal-draft special called SHAKEN NOT STIRRED, getting a respectable second overall.  For more 25th Harvest Moon Regatta sailing information.

J/Community

What friends, alumni and crew of J/Boats are doing worldwide

J/24 sailing gadgets* "Yo, it's the situation, dude!"  Jah, mon!  Cool story, about the resurrection of a really OLD (a.k.a. "classic") J/24.  Skipper David Heisserer and accomplice Dillon Hodapp sail the J/24 THE SITUATION, hull #15 built in 1977 (the math means it's 34 years old!), and race in J/24 Fleet #1. She has picked up the infamous nickname “Red Boat” - strangely fitting for the Russian components on-board.

Skipper David and accomplice Dillon have designed and built a digital compass that uses nixi tubes - a cold war era vacuum tube that produces a glowing number. Inside they use an extremely precise J/24 one-design sailboat number 15!  Sailing Lake MinnetonkaHoneywell two axis digital compass chip. The precision is on par with high end sailing compasses on the market. The compass displays lifts and headers by displaying a plus or minus and the degree on each board. The windows are laser cut with a J/24 polar diagram on Starboard and a map of Lake Minnetonka on Port.

“We were looking for an outrageous aesthetic without sacrificing function.”

The boat is back from the dead after 20 years of neglect, every part of the project has been DIY. THE SITUATION  races at WYC in Minnesota and is creeping up from the back of the fleet. The club will be hosting the 2013 J/24 Nationals where they hope to make an appearance.

David an artist/designer and Dillon a mechanical engineer, are recent winners of Red Bull Creation an invention contest in New York this summer. Their company Mixed Media Engineering does product design and experiential marketing pushing always for artistic and unbelievable builds.  They have been featured on CNN money, are in the November issue of Popular Mechanics Magazine, and have been featured on psfk.com, techcrunch.com and coolthings.com for their creations.

The J Cruising CommunityJ cruising directions- roll the dice and go!  Sailing to anywhere, anytime! J Cruisers continue their adventures around the world, below are a selection of most excellent "blogs" written by their prolific publishers.  Some terribly amusing anecdotes and pearls of wisdom are contained in their blogs. Read some! You'll love it.

* The J/42 JARANA continues their epic voyage around the Pacific. Continue to read about Bill and Kathy Cuffel's big adventure cruising the South Pacific headed for New Zealand.  Their blog is here: http://www.svjarana.blogspot.com/

* Prolific writers, Bill and Judy Stellin, sailed their J/42 JAYWALKER around the Mediterranean and Europe and back across the Atlantic for nearly three years.  Their blogs/journals can be found at- http://blog.mailasail.com/jaywalker.  The earlier journals have been compiled into two self published books which can be found at: http://www.blurb.com.  Search for "SEATREK: A Passion for Sailing" by Bill Stellin or William Stellin."  UPDATE-  Just a short note to update from Bill- "Our cruise began in May of 2000 and ended in May of 2008, some 8 years later. I have just finished and published my third and final book covering the last three or so years including our double handed crossing in 16 days and one winter in the Caribbean. Like the others, "Sea Trek- A Passion for sailing- Book III," can be found at www.blurb.com.  Thanks, Bill and Judy"

J/130 sailing ARC Rally arrives Portugal- leave a message on the sea wall!* John and Mary Driver are sailing their J/130 SHAZAM for extended cruising in the Atlantic basin. At this time, John and Mary finished their double-handed crossing of the Atlantic, landing in Portugal on their J/130 Shazam after completion of their ARC Rally. Read the latest news at http://www.sailblogs.com/member/shazam/.

* Several J/160 owners are island hopping across the world's oceans, fulfilling life long dreams to cruise the Pacific islands, the Caribbean islands, the Indian Ocean and all points in between.  Anyone for Cape Horn and penguins??  Read more about their adventures and escapades (like our J/109 GAIA, J/42s PAX and JAYWALKER and J/130 SHAZAM friends above).

SALACIA, the J/160 owned by Stephen and Cyndy Everett has an on-going blog describing some of their more amusing experiences (http://www.salacia1.blogspot.com).

-  Bill and Susan Grun on the J/160 AVANTE are also sailing in the Pacific archipelago, read more about their great adventures on their blog (http://web.me.com/susangrun).  Check out there recent travels- now past Fiji!

- Eric and Jenn on the J/160 MANDALAY also sailed the Pacific archipelago, read more on their blog at http://www.sailmandalay.com.  Eric and Jenn are J/World alumni took MANDALAY up and down the West Coast (Mexico, CA)J/109 racer-cruiser sailboat GAIA- sailing off Java Sea cruising offshore, then to the South Pacific and New Zealand.  MANDALAY is back in San Francisco now, and in the J/World fleet--she is available for skippered charters, private instruction, and corporate/executive groups.

* The J/109 GAIA (seen right in the Java Sea) was sailed by Bob Riggle and Phyllis Macay around the world. In February 2011, their cruising adventures came to an abrupt, sad ending.  As a tribute to them and their cruising friends worldwide, we hope their chronicles on their GAIA website remains a tribute to their warm-hearted spirits- read more about why many loved them dearly and will remain touched by their loving spirit forever- http://www.gaiaworldtour.net/