Wednesday, January 20, 2021

J/Newsletter- January 20th, 2021

sunset sailing on the Solent
In the past week or so, a lot of progress has been made on J/Boats two latest projects- the introduction of the new J/9 daysailer being made in the USA (Bristol, RI) and the new J/45 offshore cruising yacht being made in France (Les Sables d'Olonne). Below are highlights of that progress for both boats. Interest in them has been very strong and the building teams are looking forward to their inaugural test sails in late spring.

The past week also saw two very exciting events take place. For starters, the J/111 Class returned to Key West, Florida and they enjoyed a nice weekend of sailing in the tropical paradise.  Simultaneously, over in Europe, the Yacht Club de Monaco in Monte Carlo, Monaco hosted the second act of the Monaco J/70 Winter Series.

Finally, in the J/Community section we got a great report from good friend Hank Stuart about sailing his J/35c BLUE KNIGHT on Lake Ontario this past summer. And, sadly, we got news of another good friend- Ding Schoonmaker- of his recent passing…see the tributes below.

J/9 daysailer hull mold

J/9 Progress Update

(Newport, RI)- The J/9 hull mold was recently completed at CCF Composites and is now being waxed in preparation for the molding of hull #1 next week. In the picture, the contrasting boot stripe can be seen as well as the insert for the rudder post/bearing. The hull stripe is 100% flush with the hull surface so that the finished molded boot-stripe will also be flush with no marks visible. A separate transom mold fits on the back of the hull mold and is precisely aligned with 6 round keyways.

J/9 deck plug

Deck Plug Update

Symmetrix Composite Tooling recently applied a custom-mixed nonskid to all the horizontal surfaces of the J/9 deck and cockpit. Four different nonskid samples were tooled up, with molds taken from each and subsequent parts molded and tested, before the winner was selected. Symmetrix is now adding the final finishing touches to the deck plug before it is transported to CCF later this week. 

J/9 Specification Update

With the North American sailboat market recently importing more new sailboats than building domestically, we set out to reverse that trend with the J/9. Most of the content and key J/9 components are being supplied and supported by North American companies with extensive J/Boats experience.

Composite Materials

Quality composite construction starts with high-quality composite materials. The J/9 composites are sourced through Composites One, the largest North American distributor, whose regional office/warehouse is nearby in Bristol, Rhode Island. The fiberglass used in molding the J/9 is manufactured by Vectorply in Phenix City, Alabama. The Corecell core is produced by Gurit in Quebec, and the resins are made by AOC Resins from their facilities in Tennessee and Ontario.

J/9 keel profile

J/9 Keel

A key contributor to J/9’s exceptional stability is the all-lead, L-shaped, low VCG (vertical center-of-gravity) keel featuring a foil-shaped, wedge bulb that increases stability (vs. conventional keels) without increasing draft. The modest 4.9’ draft allows the J/9 to sail in most areas, and an optional 3.9’ shoal keel is available for even skinnier water access. The J/9 keels are being produced at Broomfield & Son in Rhode Island.

J/9 sailplan

Jib Furling System

The J/9 design philosophy of keeping things simple is carried through to the sailing hardware and systems. In-deck jib furlers might look great, but for less weight, less cost, easier maintenance and much less friction, nothing beats a high quality above-deck furler like the Mark IV Unit 0 from Harken, Inc. of Pewaukee, WI.

J/9 Spar Package

After carefully considering several spar options, Sparcraft USA (Charlotte, NC) was chosen to supply the J/9’s spar package. The Sparcraft extrusions (mast and boom sections) match the J/9’s performance profile, and the company’s ability to anodize and powder coat the spars provides the most durable painted finish available.  For more J/9 Daysailer information
J/45 hull demolding

J/45 Cruising Yacht Just Hatched!

(Les Sables d'Olonne, France)- This past week, the team at J/Composites in Les Sables d'Olonne, France is proud to present the first hull "out-of-the-box" of the brand-new J/45 offshore cruising yacht.  

Designed to be a comfortable offshore greyhound, the J/45 design is reminiscent of the remarkable heritage of J/Boats offshore cruising yachts of the past, such as the J/145, J/160, and J/65. Clean, crisp lines, fine entry, forgiving hull shape, and flat exit off the stern quarters all point to a cruising yacht that will reel-off the miles offshore, wherever the heart desires. 

J/45 offshore cruising yacht transom
Fulfill that dream, escape to world's unknown. As Sarah Frances Brown once said, "twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So, throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover!"  Learn more about the new J/45 offshore cruising yacht here
J/70s sailing Biscayne Bay off Miami, FL

J/70 Bacardi Winter Series II Preview

Miami, FL- Hosted principally by the Bacardi Event management team and Shake-A-Leg Miami's beautiful facilities in Coconut Grove (Miami), Florida, the second of the three event Bacardi Winter Series will be taking place this weekend from January 22nd to 24th, 2021.  

The forecast continues to improve for the weekend for the twenty J/70 teams that are entered from around the world. There are teams from Germany, Brazil, Cayman Islands, and USA. 

The first regatta in mid-December was nearly washed out due to no wind...a single, very marginal, race was held for the highly competitive fleet.  No question, everyone is looking forward to the classic breezes from the southeast that Biscayne Bay is famous for this coming weekend.  

By J/70 standards, the small fleet is deeply laden with talent across the board, counting well over two-dozen World Champions in various classes amongst them. Some teams that may be at the top of the leaderboard include Joel Ronning's CATAPULT (with Erik Shampain & Morgan Reeser on speed/tactics), Germany's Mike Illbruck on PINTA (including famous tactician John Kostecki), Peter Cunningham's POWERPLAY from the Cayman Islands, John Brim's RIMETTE (with Zeke Horowitz on tactics), Pam Rose's ROSEBUD (with Bill Hardesty on tactics), Steve Benjamin's SAINT (with 2 World Champion tacticians aboard- Al Terhune & Chris Larson), Ryan McKillen's SURGE (with Lucas Calabrese & John Wallace on speed/ tactics), Dave Janetti's VERY ODD (with Travis Odenbach on tactics), Buddy Cribb's VICTORY (with Greiner Hobbs & Malcolm Lamphere on speed/tactics), and Doug Newhouse's YONDER (with Jeremy Wilmot & Tomas Dietrich on speed/ tactics). That is a breath-taking collection of smart, fast sailors on those teams.  For more Bacardi Winter Series II sailing information
J/92 sailing Key West Race

Fort Lauderdale to Key West Race Started!

(Fort Lauderdale, FL)- The third event of the 2020-21 SORC Islands in the Stream Series, the 2021 Lauderdale to Key West Race, got underway today with a slow, light winds forecast for the 155 nm course. The 31 entrants are competing in four ORC divisions, PHRF, and Multihull. The four J/Crews are making tracks down the Florida Keys, right-turn signal blinking the entire way! 

You can watch their progress with the Kattack Tracker, click here and cheer on your buddies

Want to watch the weather in Key West and wish you were there? Check out the Key West Harbor webcam here   Follow the race here on the SORC Sailing Facebook page   For more Key West Race sailing information
J/Duffels for sale

January Special for a J/Duffel!

(Newport, RI)- Ronstan has been in the performance sailing business for years and they have designed a quality duffel that is perfect for racing or cruising. Ample space in the 24"x12"x12" dimension with wide grip carry strap. Inside wet pouch keeps the dry clothes separate. Rugged stitching and large top loading flap. Embroider with your class logo, boat name, and sail number.  We are offering a 21% discount for the month of January! Click here to order now!

Sailing Calendar

Jan 21- STC Lauderdale to Key West Race- Fort Lauderdale, FL
Jan 22-24- J/70 Bacardi Winter Series II- Miami, FL
Feb 4-7- Monaco J/70 Winter Series- Monte Carlo, Monaco
Feb 17- SORC Miami to Eleuthera Race- Miami, FL
Mar 4-7- J/70 Primo Cup- Trophee Credit Suisse- Monte Carlo, Monaco
Mar 5-7- J/111 Key West Winter Series- Key West, FL
Mar 5-8- St Maarten Heineken Regatta- Simpson Bay, Saint Maarten
Mar 10-13- J/70 Bacardi Cup- Miami, FL
Mar 19-21- J/70 Davis Island Winter Series III- Tampa, FL
Mar 19-21- San Diego NOOD Regatta- San Diego, CA
Mar 26-28- St. Thomas International Regatta- St. Thomas, USVI
Mar 29- Apr 4- BVI Spring Regatta- Road Town, Tortola, BVI
Apr 2-4- St Petersburg NOOD Regatta- St Petersburg, FL
Apr 11-17- Les Voiles de St Barth Regatta- Gustavia, St Barthelemy 
Apr 8-11- Charleston Race Week- Charleston, SC
Apr 24-30- Antigua Sailing Week- English Harbour, Antigua, West Indies

For additional J/Regatta and Event dates in your region, please refer to the on-line J/Sailing Calendar.
J/111s sailing off Key West, FL

RAMROD Takes J/111 Key West Winter Series I

(Key West, Florida)- The inaugural 2021 Key West Winter Series took place January 16-18 off Key West, Florida. Thanks to the efforts of Ryan and Rob Ruhlman and the entire team at SAILING INC (with J/Dealerships in Ohio and South Carolina) for pulling this together. 

J/111 winter series off Key West, FL
The five-boat fleet were chomping on their bits and could not wait to get back down to Key West and do some sailing in the gorgeous aquamarine waters and mild 70's temperatures with plenty of sun! They were not disappointed, as Key West delivered on some great sailing in the race course area just 2.0 miles southwest of Key West Harbor. 

After a thrilling, fun-filled three days of racing offshore, the regatta PRO Mark Foster managed to run a tight series of races, completing eight races by Sunday afternoon. 

J/111 Ramrod sailing Key West Winter Series
A well-known Chesapeake Bay sailor who has several offshore and World Championship titles to his name managed to win in his inaugural debut in the J/111 class. Rod Jabin's crew on RAMROD took the first J/111 Key West Winter Series event with the stunning record of three 1sts, four 2nds, and a 4th for total of 15 pts. While the RAMROD crew mastered their boat and the conditions, showing their transom to the fleet most of the time, behind them it was anything but clear which teams would make the podium. Sailing perhaps one of their best regattas in recent years was Andy and Sedge Ward's BRAVO posting five races in the top three and winning the last race to cement their hold on the silver. Finishing just four points behind them was another Chesapeake Bay team on Marty Roesch's VELOCITY, posting six races in the top three to take the bronze. 

The next regatta in Key West will be sailed on March 5th to 7th, 2021. 

Follow the J/111 class on Facebook here   For more information regards Key West Winter J/111 Series, presented by SAILING INC 

J/70s sailing off Monte Carlo, Monaco

PETITE TERRIBLE- ADRIA FERRIES Wins J/70 Monaco Winter Series Act I

(Monte Carlo, Monaco)- For the start of its eighth season, the Monaco J/70 Winter Series had twenty-one teams participating from Monaco, Switzerland, Italy, and France! As usual, the Yacht Club de Monaco rolled out the red carpet for the happy and enthusiastic J/70 teams, hosting a wonderful event despite all of the precautions put in place for Covid virus mitigation. 

Like their compatriots in the USA, the Mediterranean Sea also delivered relatively light weather for the duration of the three-day series. In the end, the YC Monaco PRO managed complete a five-race series.

J/70s sailing off Monte Carlo, Monaco
The fleet was deeply talented, including the past three-time European J/70 Champion- Italian Claudia Rossi's famous PETITE TERRIBLE- ADRIA FERRIES. Hopping aboard her boat with her familiar crew must have sent chills down the spines of the other top tacticians and skippers. Not surprisingly, it was pretty clear after the first day that Claudia had not lost her form, taking a 1-2 to easily lead the fleet. Thereafter, she posted a 1-7-5 to win the regatta with just 9 pts.  

Swiss sailor, Thomas Studer, started off slowly on the first day, then quickly made the necessary adjustments with his crew to sail smarter and faster the rest of the regatta. Studer's JERRY posted a 6-8-2-2-1 tally for a total of 11 net pts, nearly catching Rossi's PETITE TERRIBLE in the end. Sailing consistently from start to finish with all top 6 finishes was Giangiacomo Serena Di Lapigio's G-SPOT, posting a 4-6-4-5-3 tally for 16 pts net. 

Winning the Corinthians Division was Thomas Studer's JERRY. The balance of the podium was determined by a tie-breaker at 23 pts each. Taking the silver based on the countback was Ludovico Fassitelli's JUNDA- BANCO DEL SEMPIONE from Monaco. As a result, Cesare Gabasio's TINN J70 took the bronze medal. 

The next regatta will take place in Monte Carlo on February 4th to 7th, 2021. For more YC Monaco J/70 Winter Series sailing information


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

* J/Net Brokerage Specials! Check out our exciting new site for lovingly-owned J/Boats from around the world here.  

J/160 for sale on J/Net Brokerage

Dream Cruiser For Sale!

Here is one of those beauties, a newly listed J/160 cruiser down on Long Island Sound. A rare opportunity to own this beautiful and lovingly maintained J/160 built in 2000. 

The J/160 is a perfect "world cruiser"; they have truly sailed all Seven Seas since inception. Many J/160s have won famous offshore sailboat races worldwide, too.  

The J/160 combines excellent offshore performance with extremely comfortable accommodations in a four-cabin layout. This boat has an extensive inventory and is ready to cruise the Caribbean now! She's available for viewing in the water today and the owner is asking just $349,000 USD!   Learn more about J/160's here.   Learn more about this newly listed J/160 here and contact the broker

J/35c Blue Knight offshore

* Awesome Family Sailing on J/35c BLUE KNIGHT

The summer of 2020 was challenging for sailors on Lake Ontario. The Canada/ USA boarder closure prevented cross-lake travel. Many friends were left stranded on their side of the lake.

The area’s Regional Sailing Association (RSA) is Lake Yacht Racing Association that holds an annual regatta. Clubs from Canada and the USA make up the LYRA. Due to Covid restrictions, the usual regatta was cancelled. LYRA organizers instead created a handful of one race events all held on August 1st, both in the US and Canada.

LYRA organized a race from Rochester to Pultneyville and return, approximately 38.0nm. Eighteen boats from Rochester Yacht Club and Genesee Yacht Club participated in the race. BLUE KNIGHT, a 1992 J/35c from Sodus Bay Yacht Club also competed.

BLUE KNIGHT was built for Peter Pape of the Rochester Yacht Club. In 1994, Peter met Hank Stuart and the two began a lifelong friendship centered on racing BLUE KNIGHT on Lake Ontario. They also traveled with their team to events outside of the US, including Antigua Race Week in 1995.

The pinnacle of their efforts was Lake Ontario Boat of the Year honor in 2002, which offered them a chance to represent US Sailing Area E at the 2003 US Sailing Offshore National Championships (the Lloyd Phoenix Trophy) at the US Naval Academy. They won! The first and only time so far that Area E has won the national title.

Hank Stuart sailing his J/35c offshoreThe team was mixed, four men and four women. Hank Stuart (skipper), Mary Stuart, Mark Sertl, Annemarie Cook, Michael and Kristin Carbone, Michele Villani and Peter Pape. US Naval Academy Midshipman Evan Scott completed the crew.

The following summer 2004, BLUE KNIGHT was again named Lake Ontario Boat of the Year. In the years since she has continued to have a fun and successful cruising/racing career on Lake Ontario.

While not having raced as much in the past three or four years, the team dusted off their sunglasses and made their way to Rochester for the LYRA race on August 1, 2020.

The race started in a light southeasterly breeze, which persistently clocked to the right. By afternoon the northeast thermal had filled in and the fleet was hard on the wind for the leg to Pultneyville.

Once around the turning mark it was a reach, then run back to the bar at Rochester YC. BLUE KNIGHT had not lost her stride, she won her class and was best in fleet. The crew during COVID times was small, including Hank Stuart (skipper, now owner), Annemarie Cook, Michael and Kristin Carbone, their daughter Makyala, and Peter Pape.

The J/35c is an easily-sailed cruiser-racer. Both Hank and Peter commented on the balance between comfortable shorthanded sailing and a hull design that is easy to feel and make necessary adjustments for maximum efficiency while racing.

For most of the 2020 summer, Hank sailed BLUE KNIGHT singlehanded. But, don’t think that means he did not fly the spinnaker, because he did! 

Thanks for this story from Hank Stuart. Hank is a member at Sodus Bay Yacht Club, New York Yacht Club, St Francis Yacht Club, Bayview Yacht Club, Storm Trysail Club, Oswego Yacht Club and is Commodore of the Rochester Corinthian Yacht Club. When not sailing he provides race management services to sailors around the world. He is an International Race Officer. J/Boats sailors would have seen Hank most recently as PRO for the J/70 World Championship.

We wish BLUE KNIGHT continued success on the race course and fair winds wherever she goes cruising with family and friends.  For more J/35c sailboat information

Ding Schoonmaker sailor

* Eight Bells: Ding Schoonmaker

Bob Johnstone provided us some perspective on Ding's recent passing down in Naples, Florida:

"Ding and I raced against each other as teenagers in Lightnings on Little Narragansett Bay back in the 50s. Ding in Watch Hill and me in Stonington. Twenty-two years later in 1973, when Ding was NAYRU’s Director of Junior Sailing, he was able to persuade a fairly reactionary NAYRU Board of Directors to approve placing the “United States” label on an unproven invitational youth regatta to be called- U.S. Youth Championship! His friend (me!) was proposing the first regatta take place out in the boonies of the Midwest - Wilmette, IL.  That wasn’t an easy process to get "approval".

Back then, NAYRU (North American Yacht Racing Union) was mostly an Eastern establishment. Ding thus played a major role in the birth of that first United States Youth Championship at the Sheridan Shore YC in Lasers and 470s, bringing youth under 19 years of age together from all over the country. For this and his many other contributions, the sport and about 5,000 Youth Champs alumni owe Ding a huge debt of gratitude. Mary’s and my prayers go out to his wife Treecie and Ding’s many sailing friends worldwide."

How influential was the nascent US Youth Champs? Over the past 47+ years, it has helped create multiple World, North American, National, and European Champions, along with a number of Olympic Medallists. You may notice a number of America's leading sailors in this list:

Ed Adams, Tom Barrows, Steve Benjamin, JB Braun, Carl Buchan, Bruce & Glenn Burton, Andy Campbell, Amanda Clark, Peter Commette, Augie Diaz, Mark Foster, Neal Fowler, Kelly Gough, Bill Hardesty, Stan Honey, Peter Isler, Stu, Drake & Peter Johnstone, Brian Keane, Gary Knapp, Mark Laura, Pete Levesque, Tom Lihan, Andy & John Lovell, Chris Maas, Jonathan & Charlie McKee, Stu McNay, Pete Melvin, Andy Menkart, Stew & Terry Neff, Bruce Nelson, Dave Perry, Nat Philbrick, Chris Raab, Buzz Reynolds, Nevin Sayre, Russ Silvestri, Bob & Tom Whitehurst, Scott Young. An impressive list of sailors (if I missed anyone, please don't shoot the messenger). 

Yet another long-time friend of both J/Boats and Ding- Gary Jobson- wrote a nice tribute to him that appeared in Scuttlebutt Sailing News:

"One of America’s sailing heroes, James “Ding” Schoonmaker II, 87, passed away January 19 in Naples, Florida. His wife, Treecie, noted he had been feeling well until just two days ago, ultimately succumbing to lung cancer.

Ding, as his friends referred to him, was a Star Class World Champion and served as a Vice President of World Sailing, the international governing body of the sport.

He was a long-time steward of the sport of sailing and a generous supporter of the US Sailing Foundation, the National Sailing Hall of Fame, the United States Olympic Sailing Team, and the US Sailing Training Center in Miami, Florida.

At the 1975 Star World Championship, President Gerald Ford was invited by Chicago’s Mayor Richard Daley to welcome the 73 crews and guests to the Windy City. Said President Ford to the gathering, “One skipper and crew in particular has caught my eye, and I would like them to stand up and take a bow– the skipper of Star 5607, Ding Schoonmaker and his very talented and capable crew – Jerry Ford!”

Everyone got a good laugh, and Ding and Jerry Ford (the sailor) must have been inspired because they went on to win the 1975 Star World Championship.

Two years later, Ding returned to the Star Worlds with a new crew who wanted to get acquainted with the class, and learn from the master. The 47-year-old crew was named, Buddy Melges! Buddy must have learned a lot from Ding, because he went on to win the Star Worlds in 1978 and 1979.

Born June 10, 1933 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, his name comes from his Grandfather, of the same name, who was a Medal of Honor recipient in the Civil War. Ding’s first race was in 1944 at the age of eleven off Watch Hill, RI. He spent his summers in Watch Hill and winters in Florida over the past 87 years.

Ding started out in the Star Class as a crew for Olympian Jack Price in 1946. He remarked during an interview for the National Maritime Historical Society in 2019, “I immediately fell in love with the boat. From the beginning I liked the class organization, the accomplished sailors who raced the boat, and the challenge to win.”

At the age of 19, he placed second in the Olympic Trials in the Star Class and was named the team’s alternate in Helsinki. He earned that honor again in 1964 at the Games in Tokyo. Along the way, Ding won World, North American, South American, Western Hemisphere, and European Championships in the Star Class. In 1962, following the Cuban revolution, he worked with Tito Bacardi and Frank Zagarino to move the Bacardi Cup Star Class Regatta to Biscayne Bay off Miami, where it is still raced today.

In 1971, he raced with another Star World Champion, Joe Duplin, as his crew at an Olympic Classes regatta in Kiel, Germany. Ding noted, “It blew very hard the entire week. Thanks to Joe, we won every race.”

Ding was named US Yachtsman of the Year in 1971 for that accomplishment and a long list of other victories that year. In addition to racing a Star at a high level, he also raced Thistles, Flying Dutchman, Herreshoff 12 1/2s, X Dinghies, Finns, Lasers, and Soling’s (he placed third in the first World Championship in 1969).

In 1968, he was asked to join a committee working on class measurement and development issues for the International Yacht Racing Union (now World Sailing). Ding learned the value of service and how it translated into improving his beloved sport. He was a Board member on the US Yacht Racing Union (now US Sailing) and would serve on several international committees. He was elected to serve on the Board of IRYU for 14 years (1986-1994 and 1998-2004).

Ding observed that sailing has changed a lot over his lifetime. “One of the best changes is modern technology, but one of the worst is the high costs associated with Grand Prix racing. Unfortunately, the Olympics has become an arms race for some of the affluent nations.”

He added, “Talent and ability win medals. Sailing is a sport you can compete in for many years.” Looking toward the future he suggested, “I would like to see the sport like it was 25 years ago. Promote the fleet, club, recreational sailing, and racing. We need to keep grass roots (sailing) and club racing active. Also, we need to encourage young sailors to remain in the sport.”

For his distinguished career, he was awarded the Nathanael Greene Herreshoff Award, US Sailing’s highest honor, in 1988 and the Beppe Croce Award, World Sailing’s highest honor in 2011. In 2018 he was inducted into the National Sailing Hall of Fame and in 2019 he was presented the Distinguished Service Award by the National Maritime Historical Society.

Notable among all of his philanthropic work was creating the US Sailing Center in Miami in 1987, establishing the World Youth Sailing Trust to help aspiring sailors in emerging countries and creating the US Sailing Foundation in 1990.

Ding Schoonmaker has been an important counselor to the leaders of the sport both in the United States, and throughout the world for decades. He will be missed, while his lifelong work will serve as enduring legacy for sailors in the USA and around the world." Again, thanks to Gary Jobson from Annapolis, Maryland for this tribute. 
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