Wednesday, September 9, 2015

J/Newsletter- September 9th, 2015

J/88 electrifying the Solent- sailing fast!Fall Boat Show Time!
Featuring the J/70, J/97E, J/88 Oceanvolt, J/11S & J/122E
(Newport, RI)- It’s that time of year again to dream and plan for your new boat for next season. Both sailboat shows in Europe and America have several of the latest design iterations from the J/Design team that have come to fruition on both sides of the Atlantic.

Southampton Boat Show
The show runs from September 11th to 20th at Mayflower Park, Town Quay, Southampton.  Featured on display at Stands M356 to 358 will be the J/70, J/88, J/11S and J/122E.

The J/70 One-Design Speedster
The J/70 is the fastest selling sportsboat ever, with 900+ hulls built in the three years since her launch. She introduces a new dimension of fun, fast sailing in a stable, easy to own boat that all of your friends and family can enjoy. The J/70′s 22′ long waterline coupled with her high aspect, all carbon mast and boom provides extremely spirited performance with the kind of stability upwind that one would enjoy in a much larger boat.

J/88 family speedster- enjoys a daysail with women and girlsThe J/88 Family Speedster
As the mid-sized boat in the J/Sport range, she is a 29 ft family speedster with stability, style and sailing comfort. The J/88 hits the sweet-spot– large enough to provide the creature comforts of a sit-in cockpit (the girls @ right love it!), inboard diesel, overnighting interior and head; and small enough to be single-point lifted, owner-trailered and stored!

The 88 re-defines what versatility means in an under 30’ sailboat.  On deck, the daysailing comforts include a spacious T-shaped cockpit similar to the J/111, with seating and backrests forward of the floor-mounted traveller and a wide-open cockpit aft due to the tiller-steered, transom mounted high-aspect rudder. Adding to J/88’s ease-of-sailing characteristics is an in-deck jib furler, retractable carbon bowsprit and cockpit-led sail controls. Below decks, the J/88 sports a weekending layout with two full length settees, Igloo cooler, galley sink, private head forward of bulkhead and optional V-berth.

Key Yachting have sold ten J/88s into UK waters, with most of the fleet in Hamble. The reason our owners have chosen these boats is that they are not only great performers, but they are easy to own and move about!

J/11S Offshore sailboatThe J/11S Offshore
As the newest addition to the J/Sport range; the J/11S, will have its worldwide debut at the show. Answering demand for sailing without the need to assemble a large crew, the J/11S is a new 36’ (11 meter) double-handed, offshore boat designed to compete in the two-handed IRC circuit in Europe.

Built by J/Composites, the J/11S is based on the high performance hull of the J/111 and is then rating optimized for her length (from IRC 1.096 down to 1.050) with a shorter VCG optimized sail plan, increased stability, a twin rudder/single tiller steering system, and simplified deck and interior plan.

While most designs in this genre are focused on offwind sailing in windy conditions (i.e. max beam carried to the transom), the J/11S provides a versatile performance platform that’s ideally suited for most of the popular double-handed races in Europe, where wind and sea conditions vary widely, and where both upwind and downwind performance matters.

“J/Boat owners have had great success in short-handed offshore racing,” said J/Composites president and J/11S project leader Didier LeMoal. “Nearly all our models between 9 and 16 meters have thrived in very demanding events like the double-handed Fastnet, Round Britain and Middle Sea Races.  We’re excited to launch a boat that’s even further optimized for short-handed racing. We based our idea on hull designs that we know to perform well on every point of sail and in all the different conditions. At that point, all we had to do was design a fully dedicated deck layout, so we adopted the solution of a tiller rather than a wheel on this boat, with the notable addition of two rudders so as to simplify the handling for one or two people.”

J/122E cruiser racer sailboatThe J/122E Performance Cruiser
The J/122 is probably the most successful 40-foot IRC racer of her generation, with fully crewed regatta successes in Europe, America, the West Indies and Australia. Recently, 122s were the Overall winner of the 2014 Rolex Middle Sea Race and class winner of the 2014 Sevenstar RORC Round Britain & Ireland Race.

She has also proven immensely popular with the single-handed and double-handed fraternity; an easily-driven hull and powerful yet manageable sailplan, allow the solo sailor to maintain race winning pace. Now, for 2014, the J/122 has been given a new lease of life. The J/122 Evolution benefits from a new interior and exterior design that is both refined and modern. These changes have been made in collaboration with the Roséo Design studio.

J/122E cruiser racer sailboat interiorDidier Le Moal, of J/Composites in France, said, “The J/122 no longer needs an introduction. It’s a boat that has proven its worth in terms of fast cruising and boasts a series of fine race victories. Its seaworthiness remains unsurpassed, but it seemed important for us to adapt the J/122 to the current climate.  Together with the Roséo Design firm, we’ve given the J/122 a thorough re-design inside and out. Now, the interior has an uncluttered, clean Scandinavian-like design, giving a more luxurious feel, along with a revised bathroom and navigation station, and the exterior now features hull port lights. The J/122E is quite simply more modern and is sure to fulfill the needs of an ever more demanding clientele”.
For more Southampton Boat Show information.

Newport Boat Show
Held in Newport, RI, the boat show runs from September 17th to 20th at the Newport Yachting Center along the downtown waterfront.  The boats are located along the water in the center of the show.  Featured will be new J/97E, the new J/88 Oceanvolt, and the new J/122E.

The J/88 Oceanvolt Daysailor
This J/88 is the first “green”, eco-friendly boat produced by the J/Design team.  Building upon the extraordinary versatility of the standard J/88, the two most significant enhancements are the self-tacking, roller-furling jib that has just one line led aft for very easy short-handed sail trim and the electric power system.  The inboard power features Oceanvolt's innovative, fully integrated SEA electric motor system (Silent Electric Autonomy).  As a result, you have silent power on-demand getting into and out of the harbor.  And, extended passage-making is possible using a combination of (i) the novel SolarCloth System from UK Sailmakers France, (ii) an array of Sunbeam Sunpower solar cells; and (iii) the ability for the Oceanvolt motor to use the strut-drive propeller for hydro-electric power generation to supply the high-performance Valence Technology battery bank.  Controlling the entire system is Victron Energy’s Blue Sea charge controller that is a state of the art remote diagnostic and service interface that lets you check your boat's status from anywhere in the world over the Internet!

J/97E cruiser racer sailboat interiorThe J/97E Cruiser Racer
Like its larger sistership, the J/122E, the new edition of the J/97 builds upon one of the most popular and successful offshore 32 footers on the European IRC circuit.  With the talented Roséo Design firm overlooking the transformation, the new J/97E features the enormous, comfortable J/111-style cockpit with a large 40” wheel for fingertip control.  Plus, the new interior design conveys the feeling of an extraordinarily wide, spacious living room with windows looking over the sea.
For more Newport Boat Show information

J/111 Worlds sailing off Cowes2016 J/111 Worlds Announcement
(Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- The J/111 class is pleased to announce that the 2016 J/111 World Championships will take place 1st to 4th August, hosted by the Island Sailing Club in Cowes, Isle of Wight, UK.  The Championships dovetail perfectly with Cowes Week, an enormously popular regatta with J/Boats teams.

The highly anticipated regatta will make a welcome return to Cowes, where the first ever edition was held in 2014. On that occasion it was British team SHMOKIN JOE, owned by Phil Thomas and Duncan McDonald that took the prestigious title. This year the Brits lost out to US team MY SHARONA, skippered by George Gamble.

The J/111 is a thrilling, 36 ft racer, with enough headroom and comfort below decks for the occasional cruise. Capable of planing at boat speeds of 20 knots plus, the J/111 has achieved some excellent results this year, including 3rd place in IRC 1 at Cowes, 6th in IRC 1 and 1st in IRC 2A at the Fastnet Race, and 3rd in IRC 1 at Dartmouth Regatta. The class delight in highlighting the appeal of the boat to such a wide spectrum of sailors, with a number of families and husband and wife teams racing in the fleet.

J/111 Journeymaker sailing off Cowes, England“2016 is going to be the best season of J/111 sailing ever,” commented J/111 UK Class Chairman Chris Jones. “We are planning to match this year’s fantastic World Champs that were held in Newport RI and add a season long festival of J/111 class sailing starting with our open Nationals at the J-Cup in June, a series of practice events, to the Royal Southern pre-worlds in July. The Worlds will be followed by a chance to sail with friends and family in a classic Cowes Week, not to mention The Round the Island Race and a chance to see the America’s Cup World Series.

We already have a crew from Australia and a crew from Chicago on the waiting list for charter boats, and the excitement will only build from here. We do need every European J/111 owner to join the party, either by bringing their crew to take part or helping us to charter their boats to the many oversees teams that we are expecting to travel to for this remarkable opportunity.”

The Island Sailing Club is well accustomed to the J/Boats family, having hosted the J-Cup 2015 and numerous J/Boats owners’ social events. The club is renowned for creating an extremely welcoming atmosphere and delivering excellent race management.

The Island Sailing Club’s Rear Commodore Mike Peskett said, “We are delighted to have been asked to run the J/111 World Championships in 2016, and particularly pleased to see the J/Boats returning to the ISC after such a successful J-Cup Regatta in 2015.  We also hope that many of the J/111s will stay and compete in Cowes Week.”  Sailing photo credits- Tim Wright/ and Rick Tomlinson/   For more J/111 Worlds sailing information, please contact Key Yachting in Hamble- Paul Heyes- or ph +44-780-226-4141.

J/24s sailing off startJ/24 North Americans Preview
(Portland, Maine)- J/24 Fleet 43 and the organizing committee of the annual J/24 Downeast Regatta, which has been held for over 20 years on Casco Bay, Maine, are looking forward to hosting the 2015 Pape Chevrolet J/24 North American Championships.  The regatta will take place from Thursday September 10th to Sunday September 13th at Portland YC.

There is a rich history of J/24s and sailors in Maine.  The 2014 World Champion Will Welles is originally from Southwest Harbor, Maine and cut his teeth sailing J/24s in his early years Downeast!  The J/24 Downeast Regatta has averaged over 30 boats over the last 7 years and has had as many as 42 boats attend.  The hosts explained that, “this will be the most fun, competitive and inexpensive North Americans in recent history!  After all, we only have great weather, flat water, consistent fall breezes, great racing. . . and the parties are epic!”  As a result of such strong traditions and a reputation for actually “walking the walk” and delivering on their promises, it was not surprising the fleet hit the 50-boat limit!

The regatta has attracted sailors from far and wide- Canada, Argentina, Paraguay, Mexico and from as far west as Minnesota in the Great Lakes and Miami in the south. Many of the class stalwarts are in attendance, including the aforementioned Will Welles sailing the speedy COUGAR. Joining the past J/24 World Champion are a range of good teams, like Terry Neff’s BUBBLES from MN, Carter & Molly White’s SEA BAGS SAILING TEAM, Nicolas Cubria’s ELVIS from Argentina, Travis Odenbach’s HONEY BADGER, Aidan Glackin’s MENTAL FLOSS, John Mollicone’s HELLY HANSEN (a past J/24 World Champion), the J/24 women sailorsDenman/Smith duo on AIRODOOLE, Tony Parker’s BANGOR PACKET coming back home for some lovin’ (also a past J/24 NA Champion), Evan Petley-Jones LIFTED, Mirsha Herrera’s MONSTER FISH from Mexico and Patricio Sly’s MUY MUY from Miami, FL.

There are at least five women’s teams competing for top honors as the #1 women’s J/24 team in the NA’s. Erica Beck & Jess Harris’ SEA BAGS WOMEN’S SAILING TEAM will be the super hot team to beat after winning their class at the recent Marblehead ONE Regatta.  They will be joined by Gretchen Sullivan’s DRACE, Natalie Penner’s GIGGLES, Katherine Collin’s FAST FOOD, and Elaine Haher’s GOOD HAIR DAY.
For more J/24 North American Championship sailing information

J/88 Wings sailing on Long Island SoundJ/88 New Englands Announcement
(Greenwich, CT)- From October 9th to 11th, the Indian Harbor YC will be hosting the inaugural J/88 New England Championship on western Long Island Sound.

Six boats are entered so far and rumor has it that more New York and New England boats are planning to attend.  Current Charleston and Block Island Race Week champion DEVIATION is registered and her owner/ skipper, Iris Vogel from New Rochelle, NY, are looking forward to the event.  In addition, another Block Island Race Week class winner, Mike Bruno, is sailing the new WINGS- a hot, new, J/88 with a black+red color scheme (seen here above)!  Mike’s crew from American YC will be looking forward to their first “trial by fire” against veteran 88 teams.  Attending from Newport will be Doug Newhouse’s YONDER and, furthermore, the new owner of 88 hull number “1” JAZZ, Doug Mckeige from Mamaroneck, NY, will also be looking forward to “go speed” tips around the track from fellow 88 sailors.  For registration and sailing information.
For more information about Indian Harbor YC.

J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

The end of August and the American holiday weekend called Labor Day often mark the end of summer-long series.  In Europe, it marked the end of the RORC’s Season Series with the Cherbourg Race- a quick dash from the Royal Yacht Squadron’s starting line off Cowes across the English Channel (La Manche) to Cherbourg, France.  A number of J teams enjoyed one of the nicest races of the season, particularly since they had wind and plenty of sunshine!  Also completing their event were the sailors racing in the J/24 World Championship XXXVI in Boltenhagen, Germany.  They, too, had fresh, windy conditions to complete their five-day long series on the Baltic Sea.

Across the Atlantic pond, we find several fun and challenging events that took place.  For starters, the Stamford YC’s Vineyard Sound Race for IRC/ PHRF handicap fleets also featured an excellent turnout for double-handed sailing teams.  The sailors enjoyed their challenge exiting Long Island Sound, rounding the Buzzards Bay Tower off Martha’s Vineyard, then re-entering the Sound for the most part through the pretty islands that make up the Plum Gut passage.

In addition to a classic offshore race over the holiday weekend, it also marks some of the most entertaining sailing all summer long, the three Round Island Races that take place in a triangle formed between Montauk Point, Block Island and Newport- Jamestown’s Conanicut YC Round Island Race, Fishers Island YC’s Round Island Race and Block Island YC’s Round Island Race.  With a lot of local knowledge at play and plenty of good breezes, the J crews had a fun ride and collected a LOT of silverware for their efforts.  Needless to say, there was lots of celebration taking place afterwards.

Read on! The J/Community and Cruising section below has many entertaining stories and news about J/Sailors as well as cruising blogs about those who continue to enjoy the Caribbean and the South Pacific, staying warm while others are trying to stay warm up north.  Check them out!  More importantly, if you have more J/Regatta News, please email it or upload onto our J/Boats Facebook page!  Below are the summaries.

Regatta & Show Schedules:

Sep 10-13- J/24 North Americans- Portland, Maine
Sep 10-13- J/70 Alcatel OneTouch Italian Nationals- Riva del Garda, Italy
Sep 11-20- Southampton Boat Show- Southampton, England
Sep 11-13- J/24 Italian Nationals- Genoa, Italy
Sep 12-13- J/80 German Open Nationals- Glucksburg, Germany
Sep 12-13- J/24 Regata de la Independencia- Valle de Bravo, Mexico
Sep 17-20- Newport Boat Show (88, 97E, 122E)- Newport, RI
Sep 17-20- J/105 North Americans- San Francisco, CA
Sep 17-20- Rolex Big Boat Series- San Francisco, CA
Sep 18-20- J/22 Dutch Open Nationals- Medemblik, The Netherlands
Sep 18-20- J/70 SAILING Champions League- Porto Cervo, Italy
Sep 19-20- The HOOD- Houston Open One-Design Regatta- Houston, TX
Sep 21-27- J/70 North Americans- San Diego, CA
Sep 24-27- J/30 North Americans- Marion, MA
Sep 25-27- J/105 Canadian Championships- Toronto, ONT, Canada
Sep 25-27- J/80 Atlantique Telegrame- Lorient, France
Sep 25-27- J/FEST San Diego- San Diego, CA
Sep 30- Oct 4- J/22 North Americans- Houston, TX
Oct 8-12- Annapolis Boat Show (88, 97E, 122E, 95)- Annapolis, MD
Oct 9-11- J/80 North Americans- Seabrook, TX
Oct 9-11- J/88 New England Championship- Greenwich, CT
Oct 10-11- J/FEST Southwest- Seabrook, TX
Oct 12-17- J/70 European Championships- Monte Carlo, Monaco

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

J/24 Worlds winners- Ian Southworth from EnglandGreat Britain’s Southworth Wins J/24 Worlds
(Boltenhagen, Germany)- All week J/24 sailors were faced with challenging conditions off Boltenhagen, Germany sailing the J/24 World Championship on the Baltic coast.  The fifty-five boats from 14 countries (Argentina, Barbados, Brazil, France, Great Britain, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Japan, The Netherlands, Peru, Sweden, USA) saw just two teams lead the fleet after the first day of racing.  After day one, it was Japan’s Fumiya Kato winning, but thereafter, it was Ian Southworth’s IL RICCIO that kept their cool on the final day and sailed home with an amazing start-to-finish win in the final race of the J/24 World Championship to take the title!

As on Thursday, racing was started with a Black Flag after Principal Race Officer Klaus Lahme did a general recall. Southworth, who had already suffered a Black flag disqualification on the previous day, opted for a conservative start, as he couldn’t afford to his closest opponent, America Mike Ingham, get away or – or even worse – let himself get pushed over the line.

Chris McLaughlin, who sails on board of Ian Southworth´s IL RICIO, said: “Our worst fear was to have a Black flag start again, but we were relieved to get a good start and to find ourselves first at the windward mark through some very difficult shifts arriving.”

J/24 women's sailing teamSouthworth and his crew have been sailing IL RICIO for five years now. “It has been the longest quick campaign of our lives,” said Chris McLaughlin. “We used to race J/24 in the 80s and in the early 90s quite successfully, so in 2005 we thought we could just step on the boat and win the J/24 World Championship in Weymouth.” NOT! The crew finished eighth – “that was very hard” – and since then has constantly been working on speed, performance and sailing skills. “We have virtually rebuilt IL RICCIO from the keel to the mast top,” said Chris McLaughlin. At some World Championships like in Howth, Ireland, and in Cannigione, Italy, the crew was very close to the trophy, but narrowly lost in the end.

“The thing we have learnt is that if you are not enjoying yourselves, you will never succeed,” said McLaughlin. “We have a team that is very close to each other, who has fun along the way, no matter if we win or lose. There were times in the middle of this week when I became very nervous and tense, and the rest of them laughed my out of it and made me have a glass of wine, and I felt a lot better the next day.”

J/24 women's sailors at Worlds in GermanyThe IL RICCIO team consists of helmsman Ian Southworth, upwind/downwind trimmer Andrew McLelland, bow woman Julia Scott, pit man Chris McLaughlin and tactician David “Sid” Howlett, who is the head coach of the German Olympic team.

“I have known David since I was 18 years and it has been fantastic to sail with a friend who is also such an incredible coach,” said McLaughlin. “David is a very special person, and also very demanding. We have not been drinking this week, we have not been partying, and we have eaten a lot of cake and tea in the afternoon because David has high standards. I think if the German Olympic team has the same experience as we have had, I think they should be winning some medals in Rio.”

Andrew McLelland has been a J/24 European Champion in the past. “He is a competent helmsman and brilliant trimmer,” said Chris McLaughlin.

J/24 Sailors for the Sea with Mike InghamAccording to the crew, the most important part of the team is bow woman Julia Scott. Julia is a former 470 and Yngling Olympian. “Despite of being a brilliant sailor, Julia makes sure that everyone is nice to each other. She is the boss! And she is incredibly tough. When we sailed the Worlds in Weymouth in 2010, Julia had just given birth to her first kid one week before. I think there haven´t been many J/24 who have measured in a breast pump at an international competition!”

Mike Ingham from Rochester, USA, who was sailing with the 2014 J/24 World Champion, Will Welles, as a tactician, couldn’t cover Ian Southworth in the last race and finished in eighth position. With 26 points of difference, he and his crew became vice champions of the J/24 worlds. Travis Odenbach’s HONEY BADGER in third place also comes from Rochester, New York.

J/24 German women's sailing team- Vega RagazzaCompetition was tight for the title of the best female crew. In the end, Stefanie Köpcke and her team VEGA RAGAZZA won, closely followed by Ragna Thönnessen and team JUELSSAND, with just one point separating the teams. VEGA RAGAZZA have sailed a very good series this year, crowned by the title of the German Champion 2015.

Javier Arribas Harten from Peru won the trophy for the best Crew under 25.

Best German boat is Team TINTO from Hamburg, helmed by Till Pomarius.  TINTO, a mixed crew with an average age of less than 25, took the honours from older and more experienced crews such as team ROTOMAN or SULLBERG. “Our next goal are the J/24 Worlds 2016 in Japan,” said Genoa Trimmer Bele Schuett.   TracTrac Race Tracking to replay the races     J/24 Worlds Facebook page
For more J/24 World Championship sailing information

J/105 sailing off start at Vineyard RaceVineyard Race Success for J/Crews!
(Stamford, CT)- The Labor Day weekend's 238nm Vineyard Race was a dream come true for many J teams participating in one of America’s classic race tracks. The course stretches from Shippan Point in Connecticut, through the swirling currents of the Race or Plum Gut at the eastern end of Long Island, past Block Island, and on to the light tower at the entrance to Buzzard's Bay, to return leaving Block Island to starboard en route to the finish in Stamford Harbor. It was a tricky race, beginning with good breezes at the start on Friday evening and with teams fighting to maintain momentum later in the race as they re-entered Long Island Sound going from east to west in lighter going and foul currents.

Vineyard Race courseThat J/teams won six classes is simply unheard of for a brand to win so many classes in any single event.  Nevertheless, it demonstrates the ability for the teams to sail their boats at a high-level of performance across a wide-variety of conditions for long periods of time, be that reaching, VMG’ing downwind, or beating to weather in a gale.  As noted before, the double-handed teams sailed exceptionally well, taking honors in both IRC and PHRF divisions.

Starting with the “classic” Vineyard Course, it was a duel to the finish for the top two J/120s in IRC 6 Double-handed class.  Hewitt Gaynor’s MIREILLE won class by a mere 14 minutes corrected time over fellow 120 sailor Gardner Grant on ALIBI.  Just behind them in fourth place was Mike Piper’s J/111 EAGLES DARE.

The sailors in IRC 9 Class were probably not surprised by the complete sweep of the podium by J/109 teams. David Rosow’s LOKI from Pequot YC won followed by two Stamford YC teams, Bob Siegel’s PAX 3 in 2nd and Cao Deambrosio & Chris Nicholls’ RHIANNON III in third.

J/109 sailing Vineyard RaceSimilarly, anyone coming up against the fire-breathing veterans sailing J/44s in IRC 11 class knew they were in for a tough night or two.  The J/44s took three of the top four positions with Len Sitar’s VAMP winning followed by Chris Lewis’ KENAI in third and Joerg Esdorn’s KINCSEM in fourth.

In the PHRF 7 ToT Doublehanded class, the J/122 WILY SILVER FOX skippered by Chris Hall took second in class.  As a first-time double-hander in the Vineyard Race, this outstanding performance by Chris and crew is quite an achievement!  Perhaps there are future plans for the WILY SILVER FOX in offshore double-handing races in the northeast!

For some of you watching the evolution of offshore youth teams racing J/105s, perhaps none is more remarkable than the consistently high-level of finishes than American YC’s Junior Big Boat Team sailing their J/105 YOUNG AMERICAN.  Did we tell you they won, again?? If not, we do need to tell you, “yes”, they won…again.  Winning PHRF 8 class, no less.  That’s a helluva track record for a bunch of kids!  Coach Becker from American YC is mighty proud of them for facing innumerable obstacles sailing and navigating J/92 sailing Vineyard Racetheir boat, much less even climbing onto the podium!  Another up and coming team is Pequot YC’s Junior Offshore Team on their J/105 TRUANT (great name, isn’t it?), taking 5th in class.

The J/120 theme also continues for PHRF 10 class.  Winning was Greg Leonard’s HERON followed by Marcus Cholerton-Brown’s SUNSET CHILD in 3rd overall.

Finally, the Seaflower Reef race course had a few J teams participating, adding to the overall silverware & pickle-dish haul by enthusiastic J owners.  In PHRF 4 class, it was Todd Aven’s J/92 THIN MAN that took 2nd while it was J/109s again cleaning up in PHRF 5 class.  In this case, it was Chris Ercole’s SWEET CAROLINE from Hempstead Harbor YC taking the gold with Don Dwyer’s GUARDIAN J from Essex YC in 4th position.  For more Vineyard Race sailing information

Crazy RORC Cherbourg Race
(Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- The final race of the “Channel” part of the RORC’s season long points series ended with the weekend dash across the infamous “La Manche” from Cowes to Cherbourg, France.

After one of the nicer races of the season, especially after the incredibly tough “no wind” Fastnet Race; Alex Adams’ J/105 VOADOR took second in IRC 3 Class (and 7th overall), followed by three more J teams in the top seven; Torl McLaren’s J/109 INSPARA in 5th (and 12th overall), Kevin Armstrong’s J/109 JAZZY JELLFISH in 6th and Nick Martin’s J/105 DIABLO-J in 7th.

As a result, it looks like the RORC Series IRC Overall sees Martin’s J/105 DIABLO-J lying in 4th place, Chris Palmer’s J/109 J-T’AIME 8th, Trevor Sainty’s J/109 JELENKO in 14th and David Ballantyne’s J/133 JINGS in 18th.

Within the individual classes for the season long points series, in IRC One overall with 83 entries, Ballantyne’s J/133 JINGS appears to have secured 4th in class.  In IRC Two with 103 entries, Elin Haf Davies’ J/120 NUNATAK took 7th in class, followed by Chris Schram’s J/120 MAVERICK in 9th, Andy Theobald’s J/122 R&W in 10th, the Army Sailing Association’s J/111 BRITISH SOLDIER in 11th and Gilles Fournier’s J/133 PINTIA in 20th.  Finally, in IRC Three with 124 entries, perversely its the J/105 DIABLO-J that drops in the standings (relative to overall) to 7th with Palmer’s J/109 J’T’AIME in 8th, and Sainty’s J/109 JELENKO in 10th.  For more RORC Cherbourg & series sailing information

J/109 Picante sailing round island raceJ/Crews Gather Silver in Round Island Races
(Newport, RI)- As the summer sailing season slowly winds down in the northeastern USA, the grand finale for many sailors are the three (count’em 3!) “round island” races that take place all within a 40nm diameter circle of a three-state region- NY, RI & CT!  Perhaps the oldest of them is the Conanicut YC’s Round Island Race, a 20nm affair on Sunday afternoon that take crews around the picturesque Narragansett Bay.  The next oldest event is Fishers Island YC’s Round Island Race, another 17nm circumnavigation that took place on Saturday and is fraught with the tricky, strong tides flooding out of Fisher’s Island Sound to the north and Long Island Sound/ Block Island Sound to the south.  Then, the third event is Block Island YC’s Round Island Race that is also about 19nm and took place on Sunday, the very same, very popular race that hundreds of sailors look forward to during the infamous Storm Trysail Block Island Race Week earlier in June.

J/22s sailing round island raceCYC Round Island Report
The Conanicut YC hosted 96 boats for its 88th edition of the Around the Island Race, which took place Sunday, September 6, 2015. This annual event is one of the oldest on-going sailboat races on Narragansett Bay, featuring a complete circumnavigation of Conanicut Island (for competitors racing mono hull sailboats over 22 feet in length that are rated for PHRF-NB). The race is followed by a dinner celebration at the host club, which was attended by over 250 people this year.

“This event has once again brought the Narragansett Bay sailing community together for a competitive and fun day on the water,” said Organizing Chairman John Mayers, adding that the fleet was comprised of a variety of different boats and competitors of all ages from different clubs and communities around the area. “Every year, our greatest variable is the race day weather and this year it was absolutely perfect; with conditions not only providing great sailing, but also highlighting how beautiful our bay is, especially when it’s filled with a fleet of sailboats.”

J/22 sailing Newport round island raceIt was a gorgeous day for sailing and it was an especially rewarding for the J/Teams that, for the most part, are quite savvy “Round Island” Bay sailors.  Starting with the nine boat J/22 one-design class sailing in PHRF C, it was Mike Marshall’s BAD NEWS that won class and nearly won the whole race overall!  Instead, the good news for BAD NEWS was that they still got silverware, taking 3rd overall out of the 96 boats!  Second was world champion women sailor, Cory Sertl, sailing LUCY (she placed 6th overall!), 3rd was Matt Dunbar’s WHARF RAT, 4th was Bill Porter’s CONUNDRUM and 5th was Eric Senior’s GOOD NEWS.

For PHRF A, taking 2nd was the J/29 LYNX sailed by Dennis Nixon from Conanicut YC.  Finishing 3rd was the J/35c SUGAREE skippered by Jim Cornwall from Rhode Island YC and in 4th place was the J/24 TENACIOUS sailed by Bob Iriye from Newport YC (a hysterical footnote- this boat was bought from the legendary Tom Ehman- for Managing Director of US SAILING, current Golden Gate YC Vice Commodore and a long-time America’s Cup director for Oracle USA team).

The PHRF D class had to contend with several extremely fast, well-sailed J/24s that really do know their way around the Bay.  Not surprisingly, a World and North American Champion led the fleet home, with John Mollicone’s J/24 PIPE DREAM winning the class and also taking 5th overall in fleet!  Third was Henry Lane’s J/24 FAST LANE and 4th was Mike Hill’s J/24 OBSTREPOROUS.

J/35 Breakaway sailing round island raceAnother group loaded down with Bay veterans was PHRG G class that featured a range of 35 ft J designs.  Taking 2nd was Ted Herlihy’s J/109 GUT FEELING.  They were followed by Dawson Hodgson’s J/100 GRIMACE in 4th, John Sahagian’s J/109 PICANTE in 5th, Paul Grimes’ J/35 BREAKAWAY in 6th, Brooke Mastrorio’s J/109 URSA in 7th and Bill Kneller’s J/109 VENTO SOLARE in 8th.

Finally, in the “big boat” PHRF J Class, taking second place was Fred Van Liew & Dave Brodsky’s J/111 ODYSSEY and not too far back was Jack Gregg’s J/122 TARAHUMARA in 4th.   Sailing photo credits- Cate Brown   For more Conanicut YC Round Island Race sailing information

J/111 Wild Child sailing Block Island round island raceBIYC Round Island Race Report
J/111s were 1st and 2nd overall with Kenn Fischburg’s WILD CHILD taking line honors and Greg Slamowitz’s MANITOU taking the second overall position in this epic event pitting the top local Block Island sailors, contractors, plumbers, cement mixers, bartenders, launch drivers, summer denizens and friends against one another.  Winner takes all, but the huge problem is tradition has it that the winner “buys” at the famous “The Oar Restaurant”— needless to say the prospects of covering the cost of a round or two or three of their famous Block Island Mudslide’s is a daunting prospect for this informal event!

Unfortunately, Henry duPont’s Soling OH BEHAVE! lost their rig while leading the race and, thus, ultimate bragging rights for having beaten all the ultra-modern offshore racing machines!   For more Block Island YC Round Race sailing information

J Boats sailing round island raceFIYC Round Island Race Report
While the CYC Round Island race may be the grand-daddy of all the local round island events, the Fishers Island version is rapidly growing in popularity.  Eighty-three boats this year!  And, twenty of them were J teams!  The local J/70 teams showed up en masse with the largest single fleet.  John Brim’s RIMETTE won class followed by the Flack Family (Brandon, Cindy, Lily & Dylan) racing machine- the mighty TORQEEDO in 2nd!  Finishing 3rd was Clem Wood’s HONEY PI, then 4th was John Johnstone’s RAGTIME and 5th was Will Lennon’s FREEDOM.

Sailing away with a huge class win in the PHRF Non-Spin division was David Kelly’s J/27 MAST TRANSIT 2!  In the PHRF Spin Foxtrot division, the “baby J’s” were no match for their competition.  Taking 2nd was Henry Maxwell’s J/24 SWISS CHEESE, 3rd was Scott Loweth’s J/22 THUNDER CHICKEN and 4th was Bill Mortenson’s J/24 WUNDER DOG.

Then, in PHRF Spin Tango division, 3rd place went to Prescott Littlefield’s J/29 ZIG ZAG ZOOM.  For PHRF Spin Golf division, the silver was awarded to Steve Marenakos’ J/105 RECKLESS.  Finally, in the “big boat” PHRF Spin Romeo division, taking 4th position was Jim Ohlheiser’s J/109 BALANCE.  For more Fishers Island YC Round Island race sailing information

J/22 sailing San Francisco BayTeam Bennett Sweeps Last Chance USMRC Qualifier
(San Francisco, CA)- Shawn Bennett and his team of Kurt Wessels, Melissa Feagin and Tom Purdy went 14-0 on September 5-6, beating each competitor twice to take the overall win at the Last Chance Qualifier for the US Match Racing Championship. St. Francis Yacht Club hosted the event under a bright blue sky and warm sun that graced San Francisco’s city front over Labor Day weekend. By winning, Team Bennett secured an invitation to race at the USMRC finals to be held October 10-12 at the Oakcliff Sailing Center in Oyster Bay, NY.

After brief shore delays on both days, racers enjoyed spirited matches sailing the one-design J/22s in winds ranging from 8 to 14 knots with a fading ebb tide turning to light flood. Also racing was Nicole Breault, who recently qualified with her team for the USMRC finals by winning the Women’s Match Racing Championship in Newport Beach, CA last month. She had this to say about the regatta:

St Francis YC match race crew- Shawn Bennet“Shawn (Bennett) and his team are really fast, and they are aggressive when they need to be. I’m sure, like us, they had some tough races where they had to work hard for the win. John Horsch and Bruce Stone are great Bay Area sailors, and Clinton Hayes is assistant coach of the Stanford Sailing Team. Plus, the collegiate teams of Chris Weiss, Pearson Potts and Antoine Screve were scrappy and smart, revealing a solid future for US match racing. The racing was super fun this weekend, and a good tune-up for the finals next month.”

This was the third Grade 3 match racing event hosted in 2015 by the St. Francis Yacht Club. With its combination of identical J/22s, consistent winds and professional race management, the Club has attracted teams from around the country as well as top-ranked umpires—including two International Umpires—both of which are key factors in achieving this grading.  Sailing photo credits- Chris Ray.
For more St Francis YC J/22 Match Race sailing information

What friends, alumni and crew of J/Boats are doing worldwide
Tim "Woody" Woodhouse at Ida Lewis YC trophy awards* Eight Bells: Tim Woodhouse
As a sailor, "Woody" grew up in the Detroit area sailing just about everything that floated on Lake St Claire, Lake Huron, Lake Erie and Lake Michigan.  As a sailmarker, he also managed to have fun and be successful racing all over the world.  He had raced on many J's over time and, most recently, with Dave Sandlin and friends on the beloved J/120 J-HAWKER based at Bayview YC.

One of Woody's friends, Joe Cooper, wrote a nice memorium about him:
"John T. Woodhouse, known universally as Woody to everyone who got within two boat lengths of him, has crossed The Bar. An iconic figure in the sailing world and a leader in, particularly, the sail making industry for 35 or so years, Woody was a character of the first order.

As a measure of the man, it took Leukemia three tries over about 12 years to get him. If one is to add the three pitched battle dog fights with cancer that his wife of perhaps 40 years, Kim, had, the Woodies have gone 6 and 0 with cancer over the past 20 some years. It is yet another record, albeit not one anyone wants, notched in the hiking stick of a man with a lot of records.

I first met Woody in 1986 as I think the first hire after he purchased Hood Sailmakers. I was an ok sailor but did know not a whole lot about the sail making game. Over the 30 some years I have known Woody that was only one of the myriad of things I have learned.

Tim "Woody" Woodhouse sailing on J/120 J-Hawker with Dave SandlinBusiness management, race boat prep, sail shaping and engineering, how sailcloth is woven, people, work, life, the list goes on. In an industry notoriously competitive and fluid, one of my favorite Woody quotes was and remains “Making sails is easy, making money making sails is the hard part”. He was exceptional at both.

A native of Gross Point, MI, he fled high school and within two years had purchased the sail making company he had been working with for several years making fast DN ice boat sails. The list of races & regattas he won is long and varied. The World’s in the DN class, in communist Europe in the ‘70’s, SORC’s, Block IS RW, Canada’s Cup, about 3 pounds worth of all flavors of the Chicago Mac Races, One-Ton Cup regattas, Etchells, you name it, he was in the spray not far from, if not in front.

I only really came to be, I think it is fair to say, one of his core group of shipmates, in the late 1980’s. One of his mates from Gross Point had got a hold of a 40 footer and wanted Woody to campaign it for him in the One Ton Cup to be held in San Francisco in the near future. We went out to St. Francis, organizing a scratch crew on the way, using pay phone, to find the boat on the hard with the captain working up a serious sweat. Unperturbed we all jumped into the firefight with tools in hand. I have vivid memories of bolting winches onto the cabin top at zero dark 30 with Woody and Commodore Tompkins, a local notable and another veteran shipmate of Woodies.

Typical of the man was his response to the statement by the measurer that boat did not meet the required headroom requirement. Apparently the boat did not meet the accommodation rules for One Tonners. No worries mate: Some deft work with a tape measure and saws-all and we passed inspection. Since we could not break anything the first time we sailed the boat on a balmy Sixty Two degree August afternoon with the sea breeze of around thirty knots and with small collarless dogs whizzing buy our ears we lined up for the first race the next day.

With about 4 hours of tiller time, a scratch crew, a, shall we say slightly modified, several year old boat and the First Fifteen of the Kiwi offshore sailing Mafia sprinkled through the infield about a foot thick we fired of the line.

J/120 J-Hawker sailing with Tim "Woody" Woodhouse skipperingHe got us off to a text book start in the first race going full speed, on the line at the gun, clear air, lots of runway to leeward at the favored end: It was a great start by any standards. We were seriously in the Penthouse. I was trimming main and he would be asking me “how we doing?” Another tenth would be good, I would respond. Repeat: for about 1.25 knots worth of tenths. By the time roughly three quarters of the fleet thundered by to weather or to leeward, it mattered not, going what seemed like three knots faster, it was clear this was going to be a painful week in the Outhouse.

The body of work comprising Woody Stories is vast and deep. He touched the lives of many people over the years. I have had the pleasure and frustration of working for him, with him, sailing, drinking, arguing with him, laughing and crying with him. The latter when one of his beloved dogs got away from him one night on Martha’s Vineyard and died. He found this out after searching all night for her and finding her body at day break.

Go into a sailing bar anywhere and mention the name “Woody “ and the one hundred inhabitants will all have an opinion and a story. Common to all 100 stories will be humor, sailing, life lessons; pretty much anything across the spectrum of the Human Condition. What ever he runs into on the other side of Tennyson’s “bar”, one thing is for sure, it will not be boring. Woody, it was a great run mate. See ya."

J Cruisers continue their adventures around the world, below are a selection of most excellent "blogs" written by their prolific publishers.  Some terribly amusing anecdotes and pearls of wisdom are contained in their blogs. Read some! You'll love it.

* The J/40 HERON REACH sailed by Virginia and Jerry is participating in the Blue Planet Odyssey project and have recently joined them in the Marquesas Islands in the Eastern Pacific.  Learn more about their adventures and experiences here-
Giant whale breaching in front of J/160 SALACIA off  Australia's Whitsunday Islands* J/160 SALACIA has been sailing in Australia in the Whitsunday Islands.  Guess who decided to throw themselves across their bow as they cruised comfortably to their next destination?  A giant whale!  Look at this amazing photo!

J/42 cruiser- sailing across Atlantic Ocean* Jim & Heather Wilson just completed a circumnavigation of our "blue planet Earth" in June 2013 on their J/42 CEOL MOR.  Said Jim, "The odyssey of CEOL MOR is over, for now.  We completed our circumnavigation on our J/42 when we crossed our outbound track in Britannia Bay, Mustique. We were, however, still 2,000 nautical miles from home. So we continued on through the Windwards, the Leewards, and then through the British Virgin Islands. After a farewell 'Painkiller' at the Soggy Dollar, and a last meal at Foxy’s, we made the 1,275 nautical mile passage to the Chesapeake and completed our port-to-port circumnavigation when we arrived in Annapolis on June 28, 2013. We had been away 1,334 days, completed 259 days of ocean passages, and sailed 30,349 nautical miles (34,925 statute miles). Read more about their adventures in their  well-documented blog here:

J/160 sailing offshore to US Virgin Islands- rainbow over ocean* J/160 AVATAR headed for the Caribbean, again!  We LOVE these updates from our cruising J sailors that continue to criss-cross the Seven Seas. This one comes from Alan Fougere, sailing his beloved J/160 AVATAR.   Alan sent us an email update commenting on their passage south this winter, "In mid-December AVATAR completed her sixth transit to her winter Caribbean home, Grand Cruz Bay, St. John, USVI (seen above)  from her home port in Quissett (Falmouth), MA.  A crew of three, Captain Alan (e.g. me), Crew Pablo Brissett and Mark Conroy, covered the 1,500 nm trip in in her best time to date- 7 Days 5 Hours, averaging 8.7 kts, that's about 208 nm per day!  Amazing passage it was!  Rainbow at right far offshore was some of the amazing phenomenon we experienced on this fast offshore passage.

AVATAR will participate in the BVI Sailing Festival/Regatta again in 2013, where last year she won the Nanny Key Cup Cruising Class race around the Island of Virgin Gorda.  Here are some photos for you to share with the J/Community at-large.  Enjoy!"
Best, Alan Fougere/ AVATAR

Bill & Judy Stellin- sailing J/42 Jaywalker* Bill & Judy Stellin recently had an interview about cruising on their J/42 in the Wall St Journal called "Retiring on the Open Sea".  The Wall St Journal asked Bill to reply to dozens of questions that flooded into the WSJ's Editor desks. Here's the update:

Retiring on the Sea: Answering Readers' Questions
Advice about selecting a boat, ocean crossings, itineraries and safety

Wall St Journal interview- Stellin's Offshore cruising/ sailing retirementThe article in our WSJ Online December retirement report about eight years spent sailing the Mediterranean— "Retiring to the Open Sea"— prompted many questions and comments from readers.  We asked William Stellin, who wrote the story, to answer some of the most common queries.

WSJ- "What kind and make of boat did you use? Looking back, would you have picked a different boat?"

Bill- "In 1995-96, J/Boats of Newport, RI, came out with a new cruiser/racer model, the J/42. We bought hull No. 6 of this popular 42-foot sailboat and named it JAYWALKER. This was our fourth boat since beginning sailing in 1975.

Although long-distance cruising wasn't what we had in mind when we purchased JAYWALKER, it soon became apparent it had the ability to carry us easily and safely anywhere we wanted to go. Because the boat is light, it sails well in light winds, which means very little motoring is necessary.

People often ask (and argue) about what boat is best for cruising. Any boat that is strong, safe, fast, comfortable and easily handled by two people should fit the bill. One thing for sure, fast is fun—and important when trying to avoid bad weather."


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

* John and Mary Driver are sailing their J/130 SHAZAM for extended cruising in the Atlantic basin. At this time, John and Mary finished their double-handed crossing of the Atlantic, landing in Portugal on their J/130 Shazam after completion of their ARC Rally. Read the latest news at

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

-  Bill and Susan Grun on the J/160 AVANTE are also sailing in the Pacific archipelago, read more about their great adventures on their blog (  Read about their latest adventures as they've gotten to New Zealand- "Avante Cruises the Pacific".

- Eric and Jenn on the J/160 MANDALAY also sailed the Pacific archipelago, read more on their blog at  Eric and Jenn are J/World alumni took MANDALAY up and down the West Coast (Mexico, CA), then to the South Pacific and New Zealand.  MANDALAY is back in San Francisco now, and in the J/World fleet--she is available for skippered charters, private instruction, and corporate/executive groups.