Wednesday, November 26, 2014

J/Newsletter- November 26th, 2014

J/Calendar 2015
The Perfect Gift For People Who Love Sailing!
(Newport, RI)- HOT Off the Press!  J/Calendar 2015! For 2015, we have created another beautiful calendar for J sailors who love the joys of sailing a J in some of the most spectacular harbors and waters of the world.  Whether you are a cruising, racing or armchair sailor, these stunning sailboat photographs will transport you to wonderful sailing experiences in far away places.

The 2015 sailing calendar features photos of J/70s flying off Monte Carlo & Lake Garda; J/24s dueling off Sweden, Newport & Seattle; surrealistic J/80s off Santander, Spain; J/120s gliding off San Diego; J/111s serenely sailing on the Solent; J/22s sailing off the Netherlands; and other gorgeous images of J/105s and J/122.  A great gift for loved ones, family, friends and crew (see gallery here). Order your 2015 J/Calendar today here!

J/88 Canada- sailing fastJ/Boat Show Schedule
(Newport, RI)- Over the course of the next few months, there are some excellent boat shows to view some of the latest J/Designs and also have a chance to speak with many of your friends and colleagues about the world of sailing.

Here are some of those events to consider, so mark your calendars to see the latest J’s on display:

Thanksgiving leavesJ/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

The fourth Thursday in November is traditionally the weekend that Americans celebrate their traditional holiday called “Thanksgiving”- an event that first took place when the Pilgrims at Plymouth Plantation in Massachusetts celebrated after their first harvest in the New World in 1621. This feast lasted three days, and it was attended by 90 Native Americans and 53 Pilgrims- presiding over the feast was Governor William Bradford, an early Johnstone family relative!  In keeping with that tradition, the Johnstone family wishes to “thank” all our passionate, loyal friends and sailors worldwide; we hope everyone enjoys this weekend with friends and family and share their love for sailing with others!

In the Americas, the San Diego YC Hot Rum Series had a lot to be thankful for since they had a nice breeze and many of the J sailors enjoyed another nice day on the water pursuing each other across the water to the finish line inside the harbor.  In Central America, the J/24 Mexico National Championships took place at Club Marinazul on Valle de Bravo, Mexico, west of Mexico City.  Then just east of them, a number of J teams enjoyed sailing the St Croix International Regatta off Christiansted, St Croix in the US Virgin Islands.  Down in South America, several events took place, including the Arbotantes Regatta, an offshore event sailed off Algarrobo, Chile that included a J/145, J/130, J/24 and J/105.  Then, east of them the first weekend of the J/24 Argentina National Championship took place off Buenos Aires, Argentina at Club Nautico Olivos.

Heading across the Atlantic, on the beautiful little garden spot called Bermuda (now site of America’s Cup 35 in 60 foot foiling cats), the International J/105 Bermuda XL Invitational took place in The Great Sound in gorgeous aquamarine blue waters and tropical weather conditions.  The international cast of J/105 sailors were most grateful for the opportunity to “share” sailing duties with their wonderful, local hosts in idyllic weather!

On the east side of the big pond, the Garmin Hamble Winter Series enjoyed their first “wintry” weekend on the Solent with just one more weekend to go for the fleets of J/111s, J/109s, J/88s and J/97s.  The J/24s earlier had their famous Autumn Cup off Plymouth, England with a very nice, competitive turnout.  Then, across “La Manche”, the J/80s had great sailing in their Benelux Open J/80 Championship off Grevelingen, The Netherlands.  Also, the J/22s were grateful for having a great summer European Circuit, all leading up to the 2015 J/22 Worlds in Germany.

Finally, the “convicts” Down Under were grateful for their fun-in-the-sun, enjoying a fantastic turnout for their J/24 NSW States Championship, sailed off Cronulla, NSW, Australia (e.g. near Sydney).

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:

Oct 4- Nov 30- Garmin Hamble Winter Series- Hamble, England
Oct 24- Mar 8- Monaco J/70 Winter Series- Monte Carlo, Monaco
Dec 4-7- J/22 Jamaica Jammin’ Regatta- Montego Bay, Jamaica
Dec 6- Hot Rum Series #3- San Diego, CA
Dec 13- Feb 7- Quantum J/70 Winter Series- Davis Island, FL
Jan 18-23- Quantum Key West Race Week- Key West, FL
Mar 4-7- Bacardi Miami Sailing Week- Miami, FL

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

J/97 cruiser- racer sailboat-  sailing SolentHamble Winter Series- Weekend #7
(Hamble, England)- Winter finally made an appearance in the Garmin Hamble Winter Series on the penultimate race day of 2014. Up to this point, we have had unseasonal warmth, but the weather Gods made up for this with a cold, gusty and unbelievably wet day on the water.

The rain began at around midnight, and competitors awoke to it hammering on their windows. It did not let up all day! Nonetheless, the race teams braved the conditions to get a race in for all classes, and some close, tactical racing ensued. The northerly breeze might have brought in the cold temperatures, but it also provided some handy windshifts as boats closed the mainland shore. At this, the penultimate race in the series, competition is hotting up throughout the fleet as boats battle for podium places.

J/109 offshore cruiser racer sailboat- sailing Hamble winter series on Solent, EnglandMartin Dent's J/111 JELVIS leads IRC0 with a race to go, five points clear of fellow J/111, Chris Body's ICARUS. Chasing hard to make a full J/111 podium is Louise Makin's JOURNEYMAKER II, two points behind in third overall, but they didn't race on Sunday.

In IRC 2, Stew Hawthorn’s J/88 JIFI is sitting in fourth overall, leading the J/88 contingent. Next is Paul Ward’s J/88 EAT SLEEP J REPEAT in fifth and Ivan Trotman’s J/88 JOJO is sitting on sixth.

IRC 3 sees Charles Ivill's ETB TYRES/ JUST LIKE THAT win yet another race and now sits atop the results with a three-point lead over Andy Howe’s J/97 BLACKJACK II in second.

The J/109s were won by Roger Phillips' DESIGNSTAR 2, which puts them only a point behind the leading boat, Adrian Wheal's JOLLY JACK TAR. Owain Franks' JYNNAN TONNYX is only a point behind second place, so the top three positions are all to play for next week, which should provide an exciting end to the series.

After such a wet day on the water, competitors dripped their way to the HRSC clubhouse to enjoy hot food and well-earned refreshments. Prizes were presented by Athena Rossi from Force 4, the day sponsors of the event.

One week remains of the 2014 Garmin Hamble Winter Series. Let's hope that winter holds off for another week!  Thanks for contribution from Ben Meakins.   Sailing Photo Credits- Paul Wyeth/   For more Garmin Hamble Winter Series sailing information

J/105s sailing XL Invitational at Bermuda- home of America's Cup 35!Bromby/ Murphy Crowned XL J/105 Bermuda Champs!
(Hamilton, Bermuda)- The Bermuda J/105 Class and Royal Bermuda YC hosted the 2nd Annual Bermuda J/105 Invitational Regatta, sponsored by XL Group, from November 21st to 23rd on the gorgeous aquamarine waters of The Great Sound. Due to the effects of hurricane damage, just six international teams sailed in this year’s event.  The sailors were treated to a wide variety of conditions, from near-drifting sunny weather on the first day, to rainy and windy on the second day, to postcard-perfect sailing on the final day. Sailors from the USA, Canada, UK, and Bermuda competed for the XL Trophy [Overall Series]; the Bermuda Tourism Trophy [International Series]; and the Goslings Trophy [Bermuda Series].

The regatta featured a unique “team” format- each boat was made up of 3 international sailors and 3 Bermuda sailors who sailed together in each race. Races were being designated as “Bermuda” or “International”; the respective nominated helmsman helmed for that race.  The format has proven popular for the sailors and continues to attract top-notch competition.  One of the Island’s top Race Officers, Royal Bermuda YC’s Charles Tatem, ran an amazing regatta all three days.

On the first day of sailing, the fleet was greeted by light WNW winds gently crossing over Somerset and Ireland Island and onto the Great Sound (future home of America’s Cup 35!).  Setting the course just south of Pearl Island, the fleet barely managed to get in two races before PRO Tatem called off sailing for the day.  Tied on points at the end of the day were SADIIQI team (Richard Mitchele & Pete Ramsdale) and the MORNING GLORY team (Jason Owen & Jon Corless).  Lying in third was CHEQUEMATE (Kevin Murphy & Peter Bromby- a former Star World Champion).

The second day saw five races completed in a stiff southwesterly breeze of 12-20+ knots.  The opening race of the day was in 13-15 knots with the International Skippers in charge, majority of the fleet picked the SW side of the course to good effect. The opening race went to Morning Glory skippered by Jason Owen, with the boat continuing to lead the overall.

Race 4 saw Bermuda Skippers sailing the boats, a battle between Morning Glory skippered by Jon Corless and Chequemate skippered by Pete Bromby for the two-lap race, with Bromby taking the win in a close finish.

Race 5 put the International Sailors back skippering and saw the fleet split, with Sadiiqi sailed by Richard Mitchele taking the left side of the course and the bulk of the fleet middle to right. With the left paying handsomely, Sadiiqi took her second win of the competition from Passion sailed by Bill Lakenmacher, who was having a very consistent day.

Bermuda Skippers took over once again for Race 6 and the Breeze had shifted a little to the South and built to 16-18 knots. YABSTA’s Stuart Neff & Trevor Boyce started off fast and led the fleet around the track, winning the race but having to take penalty points for a rules infraction. Both Morning Glory and Sadiiqi continued to sail well, taking a 2nd and 3rd, respectively.

In the seventh race Sadiiqi led after the first lap, but YABSTA had a better leeward rounding and took the lead on the second upwind, and then kept a comfortable lead of several hundred yards to the finish from Sadiiqi.  At the completion of the day, the Sadiiqi team was holding onto their first place overall, but having to face the fact that four other boats were squeezed into a four point spread just behind them.  It would be no small task for the Sadiiqi team to hold on to the lead considering the closeness of the racing so far.

The final day of racing saw three races completed in a stiff northerly breeze.  The opening race [#8] of the day was in 14-18 knots, and the fleet had to deal with large wind shifts as well as difficult chop that this wind direction always brings. The race went to YABSTA [Trevor Boyce] – his second bullet of the regatta, ahead of Chequemate [Peter Bromby].  It was also YABSTA’s third straight bullet against the highly competitive fleet.

Race 9 [the final International race] started with a shift to the left in strong breeze. At the windward mark, a massive pack converged with YABSTA again leading the fleet for the fourth race in a row.  Immediately behind them, the entire pack of five boats rounded as a massive cluster, which saw several protests hailed and flags raised, as the finer points of rules were politely discussed on the racecourse.  Sadiiqi came out of this mess pinned out to the right and behind, never to recover. After two laps, Passion [Bill Lakenmacher] beat Chequemate [Kevin Murphy] to the line, with YABASTA (Stew Neff) dropping back to fifth.

Race 10 [the final Bermuda race] rounded out the series, and it came to a thrilling conclusion. After yet another solid, controlling start, the YABSTA crew (Trevor Boyce) led the fleet around the first windward mark (leading the fleet for the 5th time in a row) with Chequemate [Peter Bromby] just behind.  After a disastrous leeward mark rounding, the race leader YABSTA fell back into the pack and took a fifth.  Meanwhile, Chequemate won the race and the regatta.

As a result, the winner of the 2nd annual XL Bermuda J/105 Invitational was one of Bermuda’s most famous sailors- Peter Bromby on Chequemate sailing with Kevin Murphy.  Just two points back was Morning Glory (the team of Jason Owen & Jon Corless).  In third was Passion sailed by Bill Lakenmacher & Jim Macdonald.  Sadiiqi’s (Richard Mitchele & Pete Ramsdale) slow day dropped them to fourth and Yabsta (Stew Neff & Trevor Boyce) held onto 5th.

A fun distance race, “The Last Blast Race”, then took the teams on a tour of the Great and Little Sound’s, before working down Granaway Deep back to RBYC. YABSTA convincingly won this race for the prize presented by Triangle Rigging.

For the International Trophy, sponsored by Bermuda Tourism Authority, the winner was YABSTA (Stew Neff), followed by Passion (Bill Lakenmacher) and Sadiiqi (Richard Mitchele).

For the Bermuda Trophy (the locals), sponsored by Goslings, the winner was Chequemate [Peter Bromby], followed by Morning Glory [Glenn Astwood/Jon Corless], then Sadiiqi [Pete Ramsdale].   For more XL J/105 Bermuda Invitational Regatta sailing information

J/125 Stark Raving Mad sailing Hot Rum off San DiegoHot Rum Series #2 Report
J/70’s Dominating PHRF 4!
(San Diego, CA)- San Diego's favorite fall racing event- the “Hot Rum Series”- continues in full swing. This fun-loving “free-for-all” generally sees the fleet starting inside of San Diego Harbor, takes them on a “tour” that heads out past the majestic Point Loma, around some buoy set offshore, then “back home to the barn” to again finish inside the channel just off Harbor Island. For those not “in-the-know”, it’s consistently one of the largest PHRF “pursuit-style” races run annually— with the little boats (like 21 footers) starting first and the big boats (e.g. over 70 foot ULDB sleds) starting last; whomever crosses first wins!

In Class 1, Jim Madden’s J/125 STARK RAVING MAD IV leads the J teams with Viggo Torbenson’s J/125 TIMESHAVER next, followed by Tom Barker’s J/145 GOOD CALL.

The top J/120 in Class 2 is Chuck Nichols’ CC RIDER, sitting 3rd overall and is followed by Mike Hatch’s J-ALMIGHTY in 5th and Peter Zarcades’ MELTEMI in 9th.

J/70s sailing off San Diego in Hot Rum seriesThe enormous Class 3 is generally the provenance of the large, aggressive J/105 class.  Sitting in 2nd overall and leading the J/105s is Dennis Case’s WINGS, followed by Dag Fish’s VIGGEN in 4th.  Third J team is Herb Zoehrer’s J/35 Z-FORCE.

Perhaps the most remarkable performance so far in the Hot Rum series has to be the J/70s in PHRF Class 4.  As a group they’re placed 3 of the top 6, with Dave Vieregg’s SOGGY DOLLAR leading, with Karl Pomeroy’s ZERO TO 60 in 2nd and Dave Cheresh’s FLARE in sixth.

In PHRF Class 5, several classic J’s are racing, with the top J crew so far being Dave Cattle’s pretty J/27 BLACKADDER, followed by Mark Clements’ J/24 BRIGADOON, Robert Noe’s J/30 MAD HATTER, and Chris Doolittle’s J/22 DELIVERANCE.   For more San Diego Hot Rum Series sailing information

J/27 Mag 7 sailing off St Croix USVIJ/Teams Crush St Croix Regatta!
(Christiansted, St Croix, USVI)- The St Croix International Regatta, hosted by the St Croix YC, has a lot going for it and has continues to attract more sailors.  What’s not to like sailing off their famous beach?  For one, the winning skipper’s weight in Cruzan Rum is first overall prize; secondly, there are three spectacular days of racing in classic Caribbean sailing conditions; and lastly, there are live bands each night on the beach with awesome “island-style” hospitality!

The event is somewhat unique from a regatta format as well since there is a “pre-regatta” called the Commodore’s Race Trophy.  This enables the locals, in particular, to get their acts together, work out the rust and get their teams “gelling” like a well-oiled machine!  The first event produced some great racing with J/Teams pretty much dominating the entire regatta.

In CSA Racing, taking 2nd in the warm-up was Paul Davis’s J/27 MAG 7, followed by Jonathan Lipuscek’s J/105 DARK STAR in 3rd and Angela Mayala’s J/80 SUN BUM II in 4th.

The CSA Non-Spinnaker also saw very spirited racing with the winner being Stanford Joines’s J/36 PALADIN looking magnificent, in fact for the second year in a row!  Improving upon last year was Dave Tomlinson’s J/24 EL SHADDAI, taking 2nd overall.

With their “practice regatta” behind them, it was now high-time to determine who would be crowned champions in the “big one”, the St Croix International Regatta and, of course, the skipper’s weight in Cruzan Rum for winning their respective divisions.

The CSA Racing was dominated this year by Jonathan Lipuscek’s J/105 DARK STAR, taking four 1sts and two 2nds on their way to a massive win; the only blemish on their record being a DSQ in race 4.  Sailing a consistent regatta over the seven race series was Davis’ J/27 MAG 7, taking 5th overall.

Continuing their winning ways in CSA Non-Spinnaker was Stanford Joines’s J/36 PALADIN, winning the class with a vengeance, posting only seven 1sts for a perfect scoreline of 6 pts (throw-out included).  Last year’s winner, Tomlinson’s J/24 EL SHADDAI, hung on for 2nd overall.   For more St Croix Regatta sailing information

J/145 sailing off Algarrobo, ChileJ/145 YALI Wins Arbotantes Regatta
(Algarrobo, Chile)- The Chilean Navy Yachting Reserve Divisions (CABOR Yates) hosted the 13th version of the Arbotantes Regatta off Algarrobo, Chile.  Algarrobo is one of the major sailing venues due west of the capital city of Santiago and 60 miles south from Valparaiso where the main Chilean Navy Academy is located.

Twenty-one boats participated in the regatta, including some new J/Boat owners.  The race consists of a long distance triangle in Algarrobo Bay.  The fleet was treated to a nice breeze from the southwest of 5-9 knots and some long, rolling swells.

J/145 sailing offshore of Algarrobo, ChileThe largest, most competitive, class was IRC 1 & 2.  The outcome of this class surprised some of the best offshore sailors in Chile.  Winning both IRC 1 Class and IRC Overall was the J/145 YALI, sailed by her new owner Ramón Eluchans, winning against seven other very good boats; one of those boats happened to be the Soto 40 Santander (5th in the last World Championship at Valencia, Spain).  Taking 6th in class was the J/130 SCARAMOUCHE sailed by Ricardo Corssen.

In IRC 3 Class, the J/105 FOGONAZO sailed by Carlos Risso took third and in the IRC 4 Class, the J/24 TREPIDOSO sailed by Chilean Navy skipper Sebastian Monckeberg took first overall!

The next J/Boat event in Chile is the J/105 Nationals, sailing December 6-8, where 15-18 boats are expected.

J/24s sailing in Mexico NationalsPorter Wins J/24 Mexican Nationals
(Valle de Bravo, Mexico)- Over the past weekend, the Club Nautico Marinazul hosted the J/24 Mexican National Championships.  A strong turn-out of twenty-four boats participated over the weekend, enjoying the privilege of sailing eight races in total!  As defending champion, Kenneth Porter’s “S” managed to repeat their efforts a take home top honors over the excellent fleet at Valle de Bravo.

On the first day, the early regatta leader was Juan Maegli’s GOOD VIBES, posting a 1-3-5-9 tally.  One point back was Porter’s “S” with a “snakes & ladders” scoreline of 2-8-2-7.  And, just behind them was Tito Benitez’s LOS MISERABLES with a 7-7-6-5.

The next day saw dramatic changes in the overall top three, if not the top five.  Sailing like a crazed bandito taking everything in sight, Porter’s “S” crew took home a 3-1-1-3 to close out the regatta and take the championship with 19 pts net.  However, behind him the regatta turned out to be a battle for the balance of the top five.  After knocking out a 2-3-2-4, Yon Belausteguigoitia’s CHIMERA grabbed the silver with just 23 pts net.  Five points back after posting a closing tally of 1-1-5-3-5 was Luis Alvarez’s TA’LENTO, happy to secure the bronze.  Rounding out the top five was Maegli’s GOOD VIBES in fourth and Pablo Gutierrez’s DIGGER in fifth place.   For more Mexican J/24 Nationals sailing information

J/80 sailing Benelux Open ChampionshipJOI’DE’VIVRE Repeats As J/80 Benelux Champ!
(Grevelingen, The Netherlands)- There were many familiar and unfamiliar faces that participated in this year’s 2014 J/80 Benelux Open Championship.  The top seven was occupied by mostly veterans and the fleet saw three new teams debuting in in the regatta.  Thirteen teams in total enjoyed a good seven races series over the weekend.  Winning for the second year in a row was Laura Vroon’s JOIE’DE’VIVRE with a stunning record of four 1sts and two 2nds for a mere 8 pts total after toss race.

The fleet enjoyed great conditions both days, with moderate swell and good breezes.  It was clear there were two winners for each day of racing on Saturday and Sunday.  Vroon’s crew had four 1st’s Saturday while NB Elsink’s crew on J-ZUS took three 1sts on Sunday!

In the end, behind Vroon’s team, the J-ZUS crew took second with 11 pts with a 6-2-4-2-1-1-1 record for 11 pts net.  Third was David van Veen’s nJOY crew with a 4-3-3-3-3-5-3 tally for just 18 pts net.

J/80 youtube sailing videoThe biggest battle seemed to be for places 4th to 7th.  After the smoke cleared mid-fleet, taking 4th overall was A Menck’s JOT with 31 pts, followed by Bernard Holsboer’s JUUL in 5th with 33 pts.  Sixth was taken by Edwin Spaans’ J-STRING with 34 pts and, finally, in 7th was T deJohnge’s DJ with 39 pts!  Close, fun racing with a great camaraderie amongst the crews!  More racing soon!   See the J/80 Benelux YouTube sailing video of the regatta here.
For more J/80 Benelux Championships sailing information

J/24s sailing off EnglandJOLLY ROGERS Takes J/24 Autumn Cup
(Poole, England)- It was yet another epic, amazing, fun, adventurous event run by the Royal Western YC in Poole, England.  The J/24s in the United Kingdom always seem to have some drama and fun in their infamous J/24 Autumn Cup.  Here’s the report from Nick Triscott aboard JAWBREAKER:

Day 1
A blustery, cloudy forecasted weekend set the scene for a dramatic sailing event in Plymouth Sound. Following just one week after the re-scheduled Spring Cup, there was much expectation from the thirteen entrants to retain or improve places in the absence of Madeleine, the previous week’s winners.

A perfect windward-leeward course was laid inside the breakwater by race officer Neil Dunkley and genoas were rigged for winds measuring around 14 knots. A hotly contested start showed no immediate leader but there was no room for errors given the competitive fleet. Correct tactics, including knowledge of the strong spring tide, allowed Nick McDonald’s team (sailing the Spring Cup’s third placed Cacoon) to cross the line first after a hard fought battle. They were followed by the visiting team of Roger Morris of Jolly Roger from Poole. Third place was earned by Adrian Bennett of Skilled Services.

With the wind rising, a pre-start incident between guest helm Sophie Pearson of Hitchhiker and local boat Dogs Jorrocks unfortunately lead to the retirement of Torpoint stalwart Steve Wassell and his crew from the event after a single race, but the commotion continued throughout race 2. The hot contest to the windward mark provided enough congestion to cause the scraping and even complete missing of the buoy by numerous boats and the placings shuffled as penalty turns were taken. Those able to gybe quickly benefited at once however and the second lap lead gained by the underweight team of Skilled Services was enough to see them win through, narrowly before the consistent Roger Morris and his Jolly crew. Nick McDonald’s Cacoon completed the first three, ahead of Plymouth’s Jawbreaker and Hijinks.

The now numbering ten starters lined up once more for Race 3, with the lead changing hands several times before the previous event’s runner up Jawbreaker, coolly helmed as always by David Cooper, surged across the finish ahead of the dependable Cacoon. A strong performance from boat-borrowing father Darryl Conyers, who worked his way out of a McDonald sandwich, earned illuminator a deserved third place.

Despite the innocent faces of most helms, Race 4 quite understandably saw the use of the black flag for the first time in the cup. With overnight places at stake, nerves began to show as advantageous positions were thrown away time and time again. There were no clear leaders until the end of the first beat when Stig McDonald’s Jeli made the best tactical choices given the now incoming tide and wind shifts. They held their lead until the end, narrowly followed by Nick McDonald’s Cacoon and the husband and wife team of Austen and Claire Davies on Jam Too who completed the Plymouth Podium. The unshaken Sophie Pearson of Hitchhiker achieved a very notable fourth, but in a change of fortunes, the winners of the previous two races followed all of the other boats across the line.

Day 2
An extra hour’s rest for daylight savings put the sailors in high spirits for the start of day 2, despite the predicted stronger winds and occasional regrets of sangria the night before. After much debate during rigging, 3 genoas ultimately stood out amongst the jibs as controversial choices in the morning’s borderline wind conditions. At the start of Race 5, there wasn’t much difference in boat performance given the headsail, but gusts in different sections of the course caused some to suffer slightly more than others. Towards the end of the second beat, it felt like genoa conditions but it was too late because the pirates of Jolly Roger went steaming ahead and looked untouchable. They confidently lead home visitor William Pollock of Flying Colours whose team fought hard for their second place and Darryl Conyers’ Illuminator in third.

With an all genoa start to the penultimate race, a few boats were squeezed out of their lanes and forced to tack to the centre of the course. The port tackers were shortly followed by previous race winners Jolly Roger, although the far left of the beat proved the more popular choice. Another crowded windward mark (at one point draped in the spinnaker of Skilled Services), left many boats scrambling for clear air in another tight contest, but the early “gybers” once again benefited with the inside line back to the leeward mark at the northern end of Plymouth Sound. At the end of the first run, an inspirational call by ultimate race winner David Cooper allowed the overtaking of four boats to make the first rounding of the leeward mark. A loose cover allowed Jawbreaker to hold onto the lead until the finish, with Jolly Roger, Jeli and Mark Lewers’ Hijinks completing the top four.

Throughout the weekend of some of the least forgiving racing seen by the J/24s all year, mistakes by any boat cost dearly. Although the seventh and final two-lap race of the event began smoothly, it was still very challenging given that the race management team said it looked like the closest start of the whole event from their viewpoint on the committee boat. Holding course on starboard at first was favoured by most but tricky tides inside the breakwater made it easy to over stand when nearer the windward mark. Precise handling on both laps ensured local bastion Adrian Bennett’s second win of the event, followed by Jawbreaker and the most consistent boat of the event and overall winners, Jolly Roger.

Our congratulations go to Roger Morris and his outstanding team on Jolly Roger for their efforts throughout the two days; they truly deserve this victory in Plymouth. It is also noteworthy that both the event winners and runners-up Cacoon (Nick McDonald) included father and son duos, which is undoubtedly an optimistic sign of the continuing development of the class in the UK for years to come.  Third was David Cooper’s Jawbreaker, fourth Stig McDonald’s JELI, and fifth was Adrian Bennet’s SKILLED SERVICES.

Praise must also be given once again to race officer Neil Dunkley who provided us with seven excellent races and indeed to all of his onboard assistants, mark-layers and the administrative staff of the Royal Western Yacht Club.

On behalf of the Plymouth Fleet, I thank all visiting boats for making the journey and hope to see everyone back in the port again next year.   Full results of the 2014 J/24 Autumn Cup may be found here

J/24s sailing off Sydney, AustraliaCODE VIOLATION Wins NSW States
(Cronulla, New South Wales, Australia)- This year’s NSW States offered something for everyone, or in reality everything for everyone. From almost no wind in race 4 on Sunday morning to around 60 knots in Saturday arvo’s thunderstorm, along with lightning, thunder and rain— a good decision by the race committee to close the show down after race 3.

Saturday always looked like being windy, jib weather from way back – although there were a couple of genoas being stretched on the course, the comment was that they weren’t really any advantage though. Looks like there were a couple of people taking a swim too, Sean lost Big Tim and one of the girls over the side when the lifeline let go. The default question was why the other two weren’t hiking hard enough to go in with them— mmm questions being asked! I heard Jeanette also had a swimmer but don’t have the details. Tricky sailing with really shifty westerlies and a start line deep in Rose bay to a top mark to the north of Shark Is. Race two and a course change saw us and a couple of others head out to the left only to find that the top mark hadn’t moved more than a boat length, so we had a reach in around the island back to the top mark. So much for thinking I had picked a winner there !

We were having our own little problems on Code, the boat hadn’t been raced for a couple of years and we had a few boat issues, new crew (Trimmer Pete is used to steering a bigger boat and our training prior was in everything under 5knots and how to use a motor to get back home) and of course the weather and the bloke on the helm – no wonder we won the handicap prize. But seriously we improved with every race until the last two and I have to thank my crew for the huge effort in getting up from Melbourne and racing the boat, as usual we had fun and when you aren’t winning, that is what sailing is all about.

Race 2 gave us all a chance to go downwind in a big breeze (for a change) and many boats took the no kite option … Terry, next time I am risking the national debt with the kite and you are coasting along without one at the same speed next to me, could you just please move away so it isn’t so obvious ! Jeanette Syme sailing Brett Hudson’s Wildfire (with Brett in the crew said, “it was a bit hair-raising on Saturday, especially squalls on the downwind, I was surprised to see my battered and bruised team turn up on Sunday– but their morale usually lifts after a good flogging! And poor Elena slipped in after a big westerly lift dropped into a knock and we fell over to windward with 6 and came up with 5. She was such a trooper smiling all the way!”

But, of course the front of the fleet is sailing away from us at light speed and as usual the bloody Black Prince is up there and will ask ‘where was I’ later, but this time he’s not getting it all his own way. Steve Girdis has gone cycling on pain of death from someone and Robbie Brewer is out of retirement and driving Convicts and driving well, with two to one on Dave in Kaotic, he is the day winner. In fact, we are all winners when most of us get home before the next storm cell hits. So glad we are not racing in that. Not without some drama at the club and round the corner for the boats going back to the CYC though. It’s as black as hell and then white-out, as the 60knot front of the thunderstorm lifts the top 2 feet of water into the air around the boats in pleasant little Felix Bay. Some of us got ashore- - - and some didn’t. Vortex went ashore too, well done Sean in the crew tender turned rescue boat dragging Vortex off in the height of the storm. Sean, yes that’s the Commodore, organizer, tender driver, boat rescuer, crew rescuer and the guy that also comes 3rd- makes me feel very humble!

J/24s in Sydney Australia squall lineCheck this YouTube sailing video out here-

This year we have 4 boats from Cronulla, the fast developing fleet down in the ‘Shire’. One might say a mixed bag of boats and sailors like anywhere, but a great group of guys and girls that love a good time and some hard racing. It’s been a process to get them to the harbour but 3 have sailed up and Dave Mackay has trailed. Dave is the guy that won the big one in the Moths some … well quite some years ago. Known affectionately as “Magoo” and with a sense of humour that instantly puts you at ease and laughing, he is no slug on the race course and comes home 4th overall in Stockcar. Welcome to our world Dave, hope you come and play more often. And that goes for all our new friends at Cronulla, Barry Ryan in Pinot, Clinton Hood in CJ Constructions and Mick Reynolds in Slippery Fish who has worked so hard to get the Cronulla Js into class racing with us. Lets get more of you to come and play.

Sunday has dawned sunny and with a dropping westerly breeze, very shifty and getting very light, the Black Prince sailing Arthur Crother’s Kaotic with a mixed crew out of Melbourne bangs in another win to make the tally 2 all with Convicts. We drift around for a little while as the wind tries to make up it’s mind. Finally the wind changes to a south east breeze, settling down and offering great top end genoa racing for the last two …. or was that the last 5 races.

Three practice starts in the last race had the RO threatening the black flag and that was enough to finally get a clean start away. Convicts they might be, but they nailed the last two and it was a done deal. Robbie Brewer and team on Convicts Revenge taking it out from Dave Suda on Kaotic and the Commodore on Sailpac coming in 3rd.

The team on Code Violation won the Zimmer Frame with Barry Ryan in Pinot and Geoff Cowen in Nokomis 2nd and 3rd.

Congratulations to Kate Holmes for being awarded the Women on Water Trophy for many years of attendance and effort with Jeanette on various boats. No Thommo Cup this year as Ron didn’t show, so I guess Jeanette keeps it by default.

Thanks to the team at RPEYC, the NSW Association, the help at the crane at RANSA and the effort from the Cronulla guys to get there, all the Sydney guys and girls that turn up and race and thanks to all the volunteers and friendly smiling faces that made the regatta an event we look forward to.   For more Australian J/24 sailing information

J/24s sailing off Buenos Aires, ArgentinaJ/24 Campeonato Argentina Report
(Buenos Aires, Argentina)- Hosting this year’s Argentine J/24 National Championship is Club Nautico Olives (  A high-level fleet has assembled to battle for class honors in Argentina on the Rio de la Plata off Buenos Aires.  Fifteen boats are racing and just about all teams that have been winning in their local fleets (Buenos Aires, Bariloche, Cordoba, Mendoza and Mar del Plata) enjoyed the first weekend of the championship.

On the first weekend of sailing, the weather had a great effect on race outcomes, with no racing on Saturday, three races in normal conditions on Sunday, and just one race on Monday after a long delay. At this time, with one full weekend of racing left to go, it’s the local Yacht Club Olivos team of Matias Perreira that is leading the fleet with a 1-1-3-4 for 9 pts.  They are just the CVB team of Rodrigo Benedetto that have a 5-3-1-1 tally for 10 pts.  The balance of the top five includes Alejo Rigone in 3rd, Santiago Doval in 4th and Chiqui Figueroa in 5th.  With another 3 days of sailing, these standings could flip-flop quickly!   For more Argentina J/24 Championship sailing information

J/22 European circuit winnersMOJO 4 ROOKIES J/22 European Circuit Winners
(Hamburg, Germany)- The 2014 J/22 Euro Circuit saw a nice increase in overall participation with sixty-four teams from Germany, The Netherlands, France and Belgium having participated in at least one regatta in the nine-race series.  Taking the overall honors was the German team of MOJO 4 ROOKIES skippered by Svend Hartog.  The M4R team ended the season with a high-point score of 135.05 points.

Taking a surprising second overall was the French team of Reiner Brockerhoff on JAZZY, finishing the year with 122.05 pts.  They were followed by yet another German team in third, Christian Rieckborn’s JOLLY JUMPER with 114.05 pts.  Taking fourth with 113.07 pts was the top Netherlands team of Jean-Michek Lautier sailing FRAPORITA.  Rounding out the top five was Hardy Kleinefeld’s CAMPAGNOLO team from Germany.

On an overall basis, it was a fairly even mix of teams from across Europe in the top fifteen: Germany (7), Netherlands (5), France (3).  With the J/22 Worlds taking place in Germany next year, watch this list of participants grow quite dramatically in 2015!   For more J/22 Germany sailing information

What friends, alumni and crew of J/Boats are doing worldwide
LVMH Foundation crystal sailing ship* LVHM Foundation’s new “sailing ship” gallery is simply spectacular.  Well-known yachting photographer, Christophe Launay, took these photos of the Foundation Louis Vuitton, situated in a beautiful setting in Bois de Boulogne, Paris, France.

Frank Gehry designed a building that, through its strength and singularity, represents the first artistic step on the part of the Foundation Louis Vuitton.

This large “sailing ship” is covered in twelve glass sails, set on a water garden created for the occasion; it blends into the natural environment, amidst the woods and the garden, playing with light and mirror effects.  See more at-   Christophe Launay’s on-line gallery.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

J/Newsletter- November 19th, 2014

J/Boat Show Schedule
(Newport, RI)- Over the course of the next few months, there are some excellent boat shows to view some of the latest J/Designs and also have a chance to speak with many of your friends and colleagues about the world of sailing.  Here are some of those events to consider, so mark your calendars to see the latest J’s on display:

J/88 sailboat- family speedsterJ/88 The Perfect Boat?
(Chicago, IL)- “When I sailed the J/88 in Newport in the fall of 2013 I really liked the boat but wondered how was it going to fit into the racing scene in Lake Michigan and who would want the boat. I have sailed boats from Sunfish to IOR Maxi's and America’s Cup 12 meters and I enjoy smaller boats more than the big ones. So, for me a 29 footer was right up my alley. The big question was could it do all the things I want to do with a boat?” said Richie Stearns.   Rich went on to say, “my perfect boat" needs to do the following:
  1. Has to be fast and fun to sail.
  2. Has to be affordable (price/ resale price) J/Boats hold their value better than any boat.
  3. Has to have a head with privacy
  4. Has to be able to trail behind a normal size vehicle
  5. Single-point lift and mast-up with gin pole. Doesn't need a boat yard to launch.
  6. Can sail the Chicago-Mackinac race.
  7. Can sail short-handed and around the buoys.
  8. Have an inboard engine to get some place.
After sailing in Newport with Stu J, I bought our first demo boat.  We had an amazing sail in 15-20 kts, a spectacular northwesterly breeze, clear skies, sunny, on Narragansett Bay.  I had to put all the pieces together to see if this was my perfect boat. So, I started looking at vehicles. That was tough, I live in downtown Chicago in a 1924 building, and the parking is tight. No way could I have a truck or a big SUV and I don't want one either. Most medium SUV's can only tow 3,500 pounds. However, Jeep had just come out with a diesel and that fit the bill. The Hemi in the Jeep would have worked, but didn't get good mileage.

J/88 sailboat- towing on trailerSo, I picked up the boat in December 2012 during winter storm “Hercules.” They were closing schools in Rhode Island and I was pulling a boat to Chicago. We did have to stop in the mountains but it wasn't it was the car or trailer's fault, there was 2" of ice on the road and the spin outs of other vehicles were getting out of control. But, the next day we made it to Chicago. Until we got to Indiana everything was very stable. There was some rocking in the rig as we approached Chicago. We found out later they closed Interstate 80 to trucks because of 50 kts cross-winds. The answer is, “yes a mid-size SUV can tow the J/88 over mountains and through storms!”  Read more about Rich’s experiences here (PDF download):

Then, the J/88 Great Lakes fleet invites everyone to join them for the 107th running of the Chicago-Mackinac Race in 2015.  Afterwards, you can then cruise the beautiful waters of the lakes, like the North Channel in Canada or Harbor Springs, Michigan and surrounding islands. It is an experience that cannot be beat anywhere in the world with your J/88! When you’re done, just pull at Mackinac City, Harbor Springs (or anywhere else) and drive home!

Here is the J/88 invitation to sail the gorgeous Great Lakes in awesome fresh water sailing, you can truly knock-off several “bucket list” programs with these experiences (PDF download):

J/27 one-design sailboat off TorontoJ/27 Midwinters Announcement!
(New Orleans, LA)- On behalf of Merlin Wilson (Commodore & J/27 Sailor) at the Southern Yacht Club, you are all cordially invited to attend the inaugural annual J/27 Midwinters (and Mardi Gras festivities) in New Orleans this coming February 18th to 21st, 2015.

For those of you who are unaware, Southern YC has a fleet of 5 J/27s and is actively growing.  This presents a real opportunity to build another OD/Class event so those of you who are closer to NOLA and too far to make it to the NAs in Oakville can now also have a chance to race the 27 at its most exciting level.  And for those of us stuck in a "Polar Vortex"; an excuse to head South to escape the cold!!

For more information on sailing J/27s outside of the Polar Vortex, contact Andrew "Curved Air" Riem (CAN 59) at-  As a Canadian, Andrew knows about all that polar vortex stuff, how it relates to your financial future and how to go “short” certain energy futures for all you hedge fund guys.  Plus, it also affects the trajectory of hockey pucks!  Finally, so that you can take advantage of some really fun sailing activities in the “French Quarter” (no explanation needed), be sure to contact J/27 maestro “Curved Air” Andrew.  Andrew truly is your “go to” guy for all things J/27s this winter.  The simple recommendation here?  Go South with your J/27!  Trust us, these J/27 guys (and some of their all girl boats) tend to have a LOT of fun!

J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

The second to last week of November brought with it stormy, wintry conditions in North America, similar scenarios for northern Europe and a mix of weather in Hong Kong and South America.  Down under, the J/24s in South America were enjoying relatively decent weather all week long for their South American Championships in La Punta, Chile.  North of them in Florida and the Bahamas, the Storm Trysail Club and the SORC hosted their famous Miami to Nassau Cup Offshore race that goes from Fort Lauderdale, Florida to Nassau, Bahamas.  It was a challenging race for a J/122, a J/125 and twin J/120s.

Across the pond, there was plenty of activity on the Solent, with the 6th weekend of the Garmin Hamble Winter Series taking place for one-design J/111s and J/109s along with an IRC fleet that included a trio of fast J/97s.  Also taking place in the flight path of busy Heathrow International Airport was the RYA National Match Race Championship sailed on J/80s at the Queen Mary Reservoir.

Finally, leaping across to Asia, we find the J/80s in Hong Kong had concluded a very busy three weekend schedule that include their Hong Kong J/80 Championships, the Lipton Trophy Pursuit Race, and the always entertaining Around the Island Race.  Also sailing the around Hong Kong race was a fast J/111, a J/145 and a J/109.

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:

Oct 4- Nov 30- Garmin Hamble Winter Series- Hamble, England
Oct 24- Mar 8- Monaco J/70 Winter Series- Monte Carlo, Monaco
Nov 19-22- J/105 International Invitational- Hamilton, Bermuda
Nov 22- Hot Rum Series #2- San Diego, CA
Dec 4-7- J/22 Jamaica Jammin’ Regatta- Montego Bay, Jamaica
Dec 6- Hot Rum Series #3- San Diego, CA
Dec 13- Feb 7- Quantum J/70 Winter Series- Davis Island, FL
Jan 18-23- Quantum Key West Race Week- Key West, FL
Mar 4-7- Bacardi Miami Sailing Week- Miami, FL

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

J/111 sailing Hamble Winter SeriesHamble Winter Series- Weekend #6
(Hamble, England)- Menacing skies, a torrential rain squall and an indecisive breeze couldn't stop the assembled Garmin Hamble Winter Series fleet from getting in some cracking racing on the sixth weekend of the series.

After a vicious rain squall caught the fleet on the way out, the wind shifted around between southeast and northerly until it settled in the northeast for long enough to get a good race in for all classes. The race team combined some starts to get everyone away in good time, with all classes sailing short courses between Royal Southern and East Knoll buoys. This led to some close-quarters racing to keep everyone on their toes, but the frequent windshifts gave tacticians the chance to make some big gains up the beats and down the runs.

In IRC 0, Chris Body's J/111 Icarus added a first place to her scoreline which leaves her equal on points with fellow J/111, Louise Makin’s JOURNEYMAKER II.  Just 2 pts back is Martin Dent’s J-ELVIS.  With two weekends left, is it possible there is a three-boat clean sweep of IRC 0 Class for the J/111s? 

J/88 family speedster- sailing Hamble on SolentStew Hawthorn’s J/88 JIFI sailed a great race to take the top spot in IRC 2, ahead of Paul Hayes' J/88 JONGLEUR in third.  At this stage of the game, JIFI is sitting in third overall with 24 pts with a good mathematical chance for 1st overall. Not far off the stage is Paul Ward’s J/88 EAT SLEEP J REPEAT; and an outside chance for the top three is Ivan Trotman’s J/88 JOJO.

It appears that Charles Ivill's J/97 JTB TYRES/ JUST LIKE THAT, which finished just under two minutes ahead of the fleet on corrected in their last race, is poised to be the primary candidate for series leader.  However, they have a mere 2 pts lead over Andy Howe’s J/97 BLACKJACK II and knowing how the teams have responded to sailing conditions in the last few weekends, this class could still be open for a surprising outcome?

J/109 fleet rounding mark on SolentIn the J/109s Adrian Wheal's JOLLY JACK TAR added another first to her scoreline, with Owain Franks' JYNNAN TONNYX in 2nd place. As a result, Wheal’s crew is leading for the series with 9 pts, followed by Roger Phillips’ DESIGNSTAR II in second with 12 pts and Franks’ JYNNAN TONNYX in third with 18 pts.  Given the fact that any one crew is capable of winning one or more races, it would not be prudent to go down to your local Ladbrokes Betting Parlour and bet on a horse that may not leading by a nose on the final furlong!

Having endured one rain squall before the race, competitors were relieved that the clouds held their rain until the fleet was assembled in the HRSC clubhouse for the prize-giving, were day prizes were presented by Peter Kay and Ian Brown from One Sails, who have been longstanding supporters of the Hamble Winter Series for over 20 years.  Next week sees the penultimate weekend of racing in the 2014 Garmin Hamble Winter Series. Thanks for contribution from Ben Meakins.   Sailing Photo Credits- Paul Wyeth/    For more Garmin Hamble Winter Series sailing information

Bruschetta- Santa Cruz win South AmericansBRUSCHETTA J/24 South American Champion
(La Punta, Peru)- With spring sailing going full-tilt “down under” the equator everywhere, it was perhaps the South American J/24 sailors who were most eager to get the ball rolling in their 2014 South American Championship hosted by Centro Naval de Peru- Club Nautico.  An enthusiastic group of thirteen J/24s, mostly from Peru and Chile, were ready to take on the top Brazilian team led by skipper Mauricio Santa Cruz on his famously-named BRUSCHETTA.

Sailing in the spectacular bay surround La Punta, the fleet was treated to excellent sailing conditions all five days of the event with winds averaging around 8-13 kts for the total of ten races.  It was a fair test of skills and it was pretty self-evident after the first day of racing that Santa Cruz’s BRUSCHETTA simply had “another gear” and could extricate themselves from difficult situations and still manage to win races.  In the end, they were crowned South American Champions after posting a remarkable seven 1st and a 3-4 as counters for a total of 14 pts net.

J/24 women's sailing team- La Punta, PeruBehind BRUSCHETTA, it was a game of consistency and avoiding “the big mistake”, some teams faired better than others.  After day one, the Brazilian BRUSCHETTA team led the fleet, followed by Luis Olcese’s SCARAMOUSH from Peru, then Javier Arribas’ WAYRA team also from Peru.  For two more days, the top three didn’t change.  Then, disaster struck the WAYRA team.  After posting mostly top three finishes, the WAYRA gang seemingly “lost the edge” and plunged into the abyss and off the podium.  In their last five races, WAYRA posted a 6-6-10-8-10 to seriously “fall from grace with the sea,” ending up in 5th overall.

On the third day of the regatta, the composition of the top five began to change, with Matias Seguel’s GURU team from Chile getting two 4ths to slide into third by a point to spare.  Then, on the final day of racing Saturday, WAYRA continued to be snake-bitten while GURU finished off the series by winning the last race and taking the bronze.   The race for the top five was rounded out by Vernon Robert’s Chilean team on JOYITA, taking 4th overall with relatively consistent finishes.

Of note was the continuing improvement of the all-women’s team sailing JITANA, skippered by Tania Zimmerman and her sisters and friends from Peru.  While they finished 8th, they managed to post a 1st and 3rd in races #8 and #9.  In fact, their 9-3-1-6 in the last four races on the last two days of the regatta was the 5th best in the fleet!   Sailing photo credits- Bernardita Grez  For Facebook photos & commentary on the J/24 South Americans   For more J/24 South American Championship sailing information

J/80 sailors- Queen Mary Sailing Club- Heathrow, EnglandWilliams Wins 5th RYA National Match Racing Title
(London, England)- Ian Williams confirmed his match racing caliber this weekend as the quadruple World Champion scooped a fifth RYA National Match Racing title at Queen Mary Sailing Club sailing on the matched fleet of J/80 one-designs supplied by the Royal Yacht Squadron and the Royal Thames YC. The Lymington-based skipper now joins Mark Campbell-James and two-time Olympian and America’s Cup sailor Andy Beadsworth at the top of the all-time winners list with five wins each.

The Championships got underway in a light five-six knot breeze on Friday, with results going very much according to the seeding’s, however the big match of the afternoon saw Ali Hall beat the world number two and former world champion leaving Williams with it all to do after the opening day’s eight flights of round-robin.

With no racing possible on Saturday due to very little wind, Sunday again started with a light five-six knot breeze with the racing more varied with unexpected wins and losses for many of the teams.

Williams wins RYA Match Race ChampionshipWilliams, and his crew at the event, Gerry Mitchell, Simon Shaw and the British Keelboat Academy’s James French, found their winning rhythm taking nothing but race wins, while Hall who had led after Friday’s racing with five wins was only able to win one of his four races. The breeze dropped early in the afternoon and the decision was made to finish the program at the end of the round-robin stage, handing Williams event honors with eight out of nine race wins.

A delighted Williams said: “It is always satisfying to win any match racing regatta. We were obviously the most experienced team but in match racing it is all about the performance on the day and you’ve still got to get the job done so we were pleased to come out on top in the end. Conditions were mainly on the light side, but the Race Committee did a great job of getting all the racing away which were good fair races and, by the way, in very evenly matched J/80s.”

“After losing to Ali Hall in our sixth race we needed to win all our remaining three races and hope that he slipped up along the way, so when we crossed the finish line in our last race we did not know if we had won or not as we did not know his results. Fortunately for us Ali had lost some races so we came out on top,” explained the 37-year-old.

This year’s event set a very high bar for the quality of sailing in the round-robin stages, as evidenced by the real mix of results between sailors.  Racing in J/80s got underway on Friday (November 14) with a 15-flight round-robin schedule followed by knockout quarter-final and semi-final rounds before the Champion was decided in the final round on Sunday.

“We last competed in the RYA National Match Racing Championships two years ago and I think the standard has definitely improved a great deal in that time. We were behind at some point in four out of our nine races and really had to fight for all our wins. It was just really good fun to get out and do some racing in the UK as we don’t get to sail at home very often,” said Williams.

The final scores showed a tie between Mark Lees, Tom Mallindine and Ali Hall each with six wins. As Lees had beaten both Mallindine and Hall in the round robin he gained second overall with Mallindine taking third. The British Sailing Team’s Olympic classes sailor Nick Thompson took fifth on his first outing into match racing while Annabel Vose finished sixth.   For more RYA National Match Racing sailing information

J/122 sailing Miami Nassau Cup RaceTEAMWORK Makes the Dream Work!
J/122 2nd In Nassau Cup Race
(Nassau, Bahamas)- Since 1934, some of the best offshore sailors in the world have battled for the prestigious Miami to Nassau Cup, including Ted Turner, Dennis Conner, Dick Bertram, and Ted Hood, aboard legendary boats like Running Tide, Windward Passage, Tenacious, and Boomerang.  Half a generation after World War II forced a short intermission, the race became part of the fabled Southern Ocean Racing Conference in the 1980s until the series’ dissolution in the 1980s.  Building on the race’s welcome rebirth in 2003, the new SORC, a group of race-veteran race managers, announced its management of the Nassau Cup Race in 2010.

Starting in South Florida, racers leave Great Isaacs Light to starboard and proceed past Great Stirrup Light, finally finishing at Nassau harbor. Today’s modern boats just need the right conditions to claim this legendary prize, and racers of all types will enjoy the navigational and crew challenge of the race across the Gulf Stream.

J/125 sailing Miami Nassau Cup raceIt was a “come from behind victory parade” this year for the 2014 Miami-Nassau Cup Race, with slower boats riding new breeze right up to the leaders on the final leg into Nassau Harbor. The entire fleet finished within 2.5 hours of each other on Friday evening. First across the line was Frank Atkinson’s new J/125 RAISIN’ CANE, sailing in the IRC Class.

For the faster boats, it was a day of light downhill work that brought the leaders slowly to Nassau.   Behind them, a classic frontal system blowing off Florida and across the Gulf Stream brought strong, new breeze to the tail-enders in the fleet, the proverbial “fleet compression puff” on an enormous, macro scale!  Nevertheless, Robin Team’s illustrious J/122 TEAMWORK managed to play their cards right and take 2nd overall in the IRC Class for the Nassau Cup.  Getting the short-end of that stick was Atkinson’s RAISIN’ CANE, having to settle for 5th overall after watching their substantial lead over the fleet evaporate in the last 12 hours of the race!

J/122 Teamwork in 2nd IRC at Miami Nassau CupA similar scenario played out in PHRF Class for the top J/120s.  After a great start and strong overnight performances, the two J/120s, Frank Kern’s famous Detroit team aboard CARINTHIA and Bill Terry’s crew on TAMPA GIRL, could only watch in dismay as they saw the little spinnakers popping up over the horizon behind them with the incoming breeze.

To the fleet’s great amusement, teams were selected to participate in a J/22 Match Race event right off Nassau YC.  Sailing just main & jibs only, a great time was had by all in this fun, low-key regatta that brings local kids aboard to experience keelboat racing on J/22s— a bit different than their Optimist dinghies!    SORC Media - C. Woolsey   For Mr Dunkley’s sailing photos:   For more Miami- Nassau Cup sailing information

J/80s sailing off Hong KongTIGRINA Crowned King of Hong Kong J/80s!
J/111 Wins Around The Island Race
(Hong Kong, China)- Over the past few weekends, the J/80s in Hong Kong have been quite busy, having a wonderful time sailing their Hong Kong Championships, the Lipton Trophy Pursuit Race and the classic Around The Island Race; all events hosted by the extraordinary Royal Hong Kong YC.

Starting with the Hong Kong Championship on November 1st & 2nd, an excellent turnout of seventeen boats participated, with the fleet enjoying a total of eight races to complete the series.  It was extremely close racing for the top two boats, Andrew Moore & Lionel Welch’s TIGRINA and Felix Ng’s JAVELIN.  After the first day of racing, JAVELIN had the upper hand, closing out the day with a 1-3-2-2 for 8 pts with TIGRINA just one point back with an equally stellar record of 2-2-4-1 for 9 pts.  Behind this duo, the fleet was experiencing a bit of the “snakes & ladders” conundrum, working hard to stay in the top three, but often snagging defeat from the jaws of victory.

Hong Kong J/80s sailingOn Sunday, it was clear that Moore’s TIGRINA crew must’ve had a can of “whup-ass” for breakfast in their steak & eggs and heaps of coffee.  For after starting out the day with bullet, they closed out with a 3-1-1 to win the series by four points over the friendly rivalry with Ng’s JAVELIN team.  The balance of the top five was equally tough competition with next three boats finishing just four points apart.  Winning (or perhaps, surviving) this battle was Dan Tullberg’s UNKNOWN PLEASURES, completing the podium on third with 27 pts net.  Only one point back was Jonathan Hodgson’s J-CHI with 28 pts in fourth and sitting on fifth place was Gill Keefe’s JELIGNITE with 31 pts. For more J/80 Hong Kong sailing information.

Lipton Trophy Pursuit Race
The replenishment of the northeast monsoon coincided with the first pursuit race of RHKYC’s 2014-15 season, with an average 10kts of easterly wind bestowed on the competitors sailing in Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour.  A total of 47 boats started the race in front of Kellett island, on staggered start times according to their RHKATI ratings. For many boats it was a great warm-up for the much anticipated Around The Island Race, the circumnavigation of Honk Kong Island.  In the end, top J/80 was David Fan’s SEA BISCUIT, followed by Alex Cheung’s FIGURE OF EIGHT in second and Paul Lam’s LILA in third.  For more Lipton Trophy sailing information.

J/111 sailing Hong KongAround The Island Race
While the Lipton Trophy took place on Saturday and was good sailing, Sunday’s Around the Island Race was shortened due to a bit too much light air.  Sailing like a man possessed, it was clear David Fan’s J/80 SEA BISCUIT crew were simply on fire.  Starting first in the J/80 Class and increasing his lead (isn’t that what the textbooks tell you to do?), Fan’s crew finished first with a nearly six minute lead at the gun!  Lonny Chen’s crew on MAY-13th took second and they were 4:30 seconds clear of the third place finisher, Henry Wong on FOOT LOOSE.

Amongst the J/70 Class, it was John Leven’s SAN LONG that took class honors followed by Paul McMaster & Fabrice Bureau taking second with DAZIBAO.

In the offshore IRC handicap world, Simon Blore’s J/111 MOJITO again took class honors over the best-sailed boats and most competitive offshore class at the Royal Hong Kong YC.  For more Around The Island Race sailing information.   For more Royal Hong Kong YC Facebook photos

What friends, alumni and crew of J/Boats are doing worldwide
J/88 Canada- sailing fast*  J/88 Great Lakes sailors extend a warm welcome to Rob & Sandy Butler! They are from Collingwood, Ontario but winter down south.  Also new to the “Great Lakes 88’s” fleet is Bob Kreilick from Rochester, New York.

What’s new in the J/88 program?  Year two of the J/88 demo program is in the books.  This year was a lot of fun because we had 4 other J/88’s to race against on Lake Ontario.  We have the biggest fleet in the country with 5 boats, not bad for a smaller market!  The 88s still raced PHRF, so it was a balance of trying to beat one another but also the rest of PHRF 1 on corrected time.  This year, we were given a 6 second “protect the fleet” rating, so what was going to be an 87 rating, brought us down to an 81.  This was actually OK, because it allowed us to see how the boat stacked up with a tougher rating against those in the area like the Beneteau 36.7 (rates 78 here), J/109 (rates 80), Beneteau 10R (92), Nelson Marek Custom 30 (93), and a J/105 (92). Of course there are many factors that weigh into PHRF besides the boat itself, like wind speed, wave conditions, crew ability, sail inventory, clean bottom, and on and on.  Overall the boat performed very well and all of our owners were pleased with how easy it was to handle and sail, forgiving on the crew, and just plain fun!

My thoughts on the J/88, by Don Finkle:
“I admit to being spoiled.  For over 40 years I have always been able to sail the newest models when they come along, and there have been many.  Each new boat represented the state of the art in production boats at the time.  They varied from just OK to good to really good.  The J/88 falls into the last category in my mind.  With a season and a half of sailing the J/88 under our belts, I can say that with confidence.

J/88 family speedster sailing Rochester, New YorkWhen sizing up a new boat it is important to put the design goal in perspective.  In the case of J/Boats any new model must perform well and be easily handled, with broad-enough appeal to be commercially viable and to sell in numbers sufficient to offer the promise of one design racing.  Boats that are too exotic in construction or too extreme in any way do not fit the pattern that has proven so successful over time.  Sometimes we hear the knock that other boats are faster, and that is true.  There is room in the sport for higher-performance boats but they will always be limited in number.  Examples of new similar sized boats that were designed for that top end speed-wise would be the C&C 30 and Farr 280, and before them the Mumm/Farr 30.  They are each cool boats in their own right but are aimed at the top of the performance curve where fewer sailors reside.

The J/Boats mantra is to offer a level of performance that is fun and exciting but also not intimidating or limiting.  We find that the J/88 is just that, fast and fun but not over the edge.  It is hard to complain about the speed of the 88 when you realize that at 29 feet we are routinely sailing with boats 5-10 feet longer and often beating them boat-for-boat.  At the same time the 88 offers a usable interior with berths, a marine head, modest storage and a comfortable cockpit for daysailing too.  Add in the powerful diesel saildrive and you have a boat that can do limited cruising and overnight racing.  These factors were all part of the plan when the J/88 was conceived; it had to meet a more varied usage profile.  We think the Johnstone’s nailed it.

Race results are not the best way of judging the potential of a boat because so many factors enter into it beyond the capability of the boat itself.  But at this point we are very comfortable saying that the J/88 is a step ahead of most other boats of its size that have gone before, as it should be.  What has surprised us most has been the excellent light air performance, which we did not anticipate, given the lack of an overlapping headsail.  The other aspect that exceeded our expectations is the pointing ability upwind when the in-haulers are employed; it is like riding up an elevator.  The keel really seems to work.

The sail inventory that seems to work best includes a main, two headsails and two spinnakers.  The light-medium jib is 105%, and the heavy jib is 100% but flatter.  The crossover point between the two jibs is in the mid-teens, depending upon sea state.  The heavy jib can be carried down to as low as 12 knots and the Lt/Med up to 18, so there is a fairly large spread where you can get away with either.  The full size A2 spinnaker is 95 square meters, and the heavy/reaching A3 kite is about 80 SM.  Our main has one reef point but if memory serves, we have yet to use it.  Jib battens can be either vertical or roller; either style works with the standard Harken below-deck furler.         

Sailing the J/88:  We would normally sail with 5 or 6 aboard, but could take more if they showed up due to the large cockpit and clean deck.  We hate to leave anyone at the dock but for most conditions five people is probably a good number.  The main controls are set up for the helm to trim the main or for a dedicated main trimmer.  Coarse and fine sheet tackles, traveler and backstay are close together.  If you are using a main trimmer, the easy mode is to move the fine tune block on top of the coarse tune block with both in front of the traveler.  For short-handed sailing, the driver can sit aft, straddling or in front of the traveler, any of those positions work.  Tacking the small headsail is easy, one person can release, and then trim in on the other side so long as the driver makes a reasonable-speed tack! 

We sail with many different people on our boat.  We spend more time exposing people to the fun of J/88 sailing, and often their first exposure to asymmetric spinnaker sailing, as opposed to fine-tuning our trim.  For sure we can get more speed out of the boat over time as we focus more, and we noted that as the season wore on we kept going better and better.  There is a lot you can do with the jib, especially with the adjustable cars and in-haulers.  The 88 really tracks well upwind when in the groove.  When dialed-in, which is not hard, the boat has a very balanced and light helm.    

Before we changed our backstay length (see below) we were probably sailing with a poorly-tuned rig much of the time.  We often got to the boat from work with hardly any time to prep for the race so the rig was often too tight or too loose.  It did not seem to bother the boat much but for sure our performance would have been even better if we tuned for the conditions.  Because we seemed to be going well we also were a bit lazy about the rig.  Finally, as the boat comes the shroud turnbuckles are not as easy to adjust as they should be but we now have a good solution for that (see below).  Looking back on the season, we were probably too tight more often than not.

We found that the big cockpit tended to attract people who ended up sitting further aft than they should be for best performance.  When we moved people forward it always seemed to make us go faster.  The exception is downwind in a breeze where you want to slide people aft.  It is easy to move around the J/88 so there is no problem placing weight where it should be.  Of course, for daysailing, that big cockpit is awesome, you can fit a pile of folks aboard, and they will have a comfortable place to sit.  Tim reminded me of the time we had the young grandchildren aboard this summer and they had a ball, even swimming off the back, easy with the open transom.  The 88 works for daysailing, course racing, distance racing or limited cruising.  The jib furler is convenient as is the Harken luff track on the mast for the mainsail cars.  The boat seems to handle a wide range of wind velocities very well, the sign of a good design.

Toronto Boat Show:  We are lending our hull #27 to Pat Sturgeon Yachts, the dealer for the greater Toronto area so that there can be a J/88 on display at the show.  It will bring good exposure of the boat on the north shore and hopefully we can build out our Lake Ontario fleet even further.  Pat has recently sold an 88 to a Toronto couple.

J/36 Jazz getting cleaned* J/36 Cruising with United Kingdom/ Mediterranean long distance cruiser Norman Curnow.  More often than not, Norm is single-handing his boat from port to port and occasionally brings along a friend or so for double-handing.  Said Norm recently, “just catching up with my J colleagues around the world.  My J/36 JAZZ (Rodney Johnstone’s original J/36) is back at her homeport after a 9,000 mile sail single-handed covering many places in and on the cost of Portugal, Spain and France.  She awaits 2015 for more racing at her club and homeport of Cornwall.  We are looking forward to some offshore racing with friends.  Here is a photo of JAZZ having her scrub off in the Tamarriver River after her trip back home!” All the best, Norman

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.
*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.