Wednesday, March 31, 2021

J/Newsletter- March 31st, 2021

winter sunset over Beavertail Point, Jamestown, RI

The Sun Never Sets on J's Sailing Worldwide

Perhaps the most exciting news this week comes from opposite ends of the Atlantic Ocean. First, the RORC in the United Kingdom is hosting their 2021 season Spring Opener offshore race using the wildly popular Royal Yacht Squadron line (a simple transit to an offshore buoy) as the start off the Cowes, Isle of Wight waterfront. Across the "big pond" to sunny Florida, the second of the perennial Helly Hansen Sailing World NOOD Regattas is taking place in St Petersburg, FL this coming weekend. The event should be lots of fun for offshore boats as well as the J/24 and J/70 one-design classes. 

Down in the Caribbean, the St Thomas Yacht Club pulled off three near-perfect days of sailing for the three-dozen boats that showed up for their STIR Regatta. And, the SAIL 22 J/70 Tuning Regatta completed its second installment with amazing sailing on Biscayne Bay, thanks to hosts Shake-A-Leg and RC/PRO work performed by SAIL 22 and the MarkSetBot robotic marks!

In the J/Community section, there's an entertaining video perspective by Sailing Anarchy's Scot Tempesta regards the on-going popularity and passion owners have for their J/111s.
J/9 hull molding

J/9 Daysailer Update

(Newport, RI)- Hull #1 is out of the mold! Sitting on a shop cradle, the hull is stunning, seemingly already gliding effortlessly through the water. Shown here in the prototype shop at CCF Composites, hull #1 is being utilized for constructing and verifying patterns for key interior components such as the main cabin berths and shelves, forward v-berth, and additional bulkheads. The main bulkhead, mast step and keel floors are fitted, and once patterns are finished it will move into the assembly area.

J/9 deck molding
Meanwhile, the J/9 deck mold is completed and the first deck is underway. The deck is shown below with just the skin coat applied. To this will be added structural fiberglass skins on either side of Corecell foam to produce an extremely strong but lightweight structure. 

The J/9 structural and laminate engineering is being designed by Steve Koopman of SDK Structures, a leading engineering firm with extensive background in high-performance sailing.

J/9 deck jig molding
Above, a new fiberglass drilling jig is fit over the deck plug. They will position hardware on the deck plug and take the boat for a “virtual sail” to finalize hardware locations. We are excited to get the first boat in the water soon as Spring has sprung here in New England. We expect the first boat to be launched and sailing in the first week of May. Be sure to contact your J/Boats Dealer NOW to make arrangements for a demonstration sail in the near future.  For more J/9 Daysailer sailboat information
J/121 Darkwood sailing Solent, England

RORC Spring Season Opener Preview

(Cowes, Isle of White, England)- The "stay at home" rule in the UK ends on the 29th of March allowing the Royal Ocean Racing Club to organize a Spring Series of racing in April and early May. With some government restrictions still in place, three races are planned to offer crews the chance for some early season training and race practice. The series is open to IRC rated boats, including an IRC Two-Handed Class.
The first race of the RORC Spring Series is scheduled to start this coming Easter Weekend on Saturday 3rd April from the Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes. One long race is planned of approximately 6-8 hours duration. Needless to say, many J/Sailors are "chomping on their bits" to get their horses racing down the track! Everyone is praying the wind Gods delivery spectacular Easter weekend weather on the often-capricious Solent!

J/121 sailing Solent, England
One of those J/Teams competing is Mike O’Donnell’s J/121 DARKWOOD. This will be the first RORC race of the year in preparation for their Rolex Fastnet Campaign. “Like everyone else, we are desperate to get back on the water and this series is a very pragmatic solution to the current restrictions,” commented O'Donnell. “It is a safe way to get almost fully-crewed boats back racing. For us, this is an absolute no-brainer.”

Joining O'Donnell's J/121 DARKWOOD in the enormous twenty-nine boat IRC Offshore Class is Simon Bamford's J/111 KESTREL, Andy Theobald's J/122 R&W, and a quartet of unrelentless J/109s that are so familiar to many Solent racers, such as Mike Yates' JAGO, Kevin Armstrong's JAZZY JELLYFISH, Rob Cotterill's MOJO RISIN', and David McGough's JUST SO. That will be one tough division to compete against just with the J/crews listed here! 

IRC Two-Handed entries include a duet of J/109s- Yates' JAGO and the McGough's JUST SO. For more information about the Royal Ocean Racing Club
J/70s sailing off St Petersburg, FL

St Petersburg NOOD Regatta Preview

(St Petersburg, FL)- The Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta is excited to be heading back to St Petersburg! Perhaps a different calendar weekend, but that's OK as long as it means the sailors are thrilled to be back in St Petersburg and back to one of our favorite clubs- St. Petersburg Yacht Club. The leadership at SPYC are determined to roll out the red carpet for all and hope there is always fun to be had on race day! Three days of racing are planned from April 2nd to 4th on Tampa Bay.

Even though no after sailing socials this year, the entire St Pete NOOD team will treat you to coffee and pastries on the main dock each morning and meet you right back there after racing with a cold beer!! Muchas cervezas, por favor!! Thanks to the beer sponsor Anchor Brewing, there will be coolers overflowing with "coldies" waiting on the docks when you return! Sounds awesome, a great break and antidote to the "pandemic blues" from the past year!

J/Crews across the spectrum are participating, many for their first regatta in well over a year.  In the North Sails Doublehanded Division are two J/112E's; Chris Zibailo's DOPODOMANI and Harvey Ford & Tom Mistele's SILVER SURFER.  Joining them will be Tarry Grimsdale & Bill Wingrove's J/35 ROCKET!

In the Cruising World Rally Race will be yet another J/35- Jose Suarez Hoyos' NO WAY JOSE- as well as David Mendelblatt's J/24 FAT LADY. 

Hoping to make their mark in PHRF 2 Division will be a trio of J/Teams; including two J/105s (Mitcham Stephen's BREEZIN BAYOU and George Cussins' FIRE & ICE) and Bob Wetmore's J/29 FAMILY CIRCUS. Sailing in PHRF 3 Division is Herb Maguire's J/22 HOLY MOLY!! 

On Circle C are two J/One-Design classes. Notable teams in the seven-boat J/70 class are Steve Knoop's AMERICAN FLYER from Chicago Yacht Club, Alex Meleny's TRUCKIN' from Vineyard Haven Yacht Club, Chris Schoendorf's TAZ from Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, and four crews from host St Petersburg YC (Jody Abrams' BSTF, Matt Braun's ELE, Tim Snyder's MORE THRILLS, and Preston Weaver's HELLY HANSEN JR CREW).

The J/24s should have an interesting battle with four bows pointing across the line as it could be reduced to multiple match races to determine the winner. Participating in that free-for-all is Mike Beattie's DAZE OFF, Andy Garrett's IRISH, Eammon Delisser's MAIN SQUEEZE, and Katie Nelson's YELLOW TAIL (girl power!). 
Sailing photo credits- Paul Todd/ Outside Images. For more Helly Hansen St Petersburg NOOD Regatta sailing information
J/92 sailing off Newport, RI

Variety Adds Spice to Ida Lewis Distance Race in August!

Something for Everyone Offshore and in the Bay!

(Newport, RI)– The 17th edition of the annual Ida Lewis Distance Race, scheduled for August 19th to 21st, literally offers something for every type of big-boat sailor. Not only are there classes for ORC, PHRF (including Cruising Spinnaker) and Double-Handed (Mixed Gender and Open) but also there are Youth and Collegiate challenges. As well, entrants have a choice of racing in either the traditional OFFSHORE distance race, starting on Friday (August 20) and requiring overnight sailing, or the shorter IN BAY distance race, starting and finishing Saturday (August 20). The latter is a holdover from Covid-19 adaptations made last year to accommodate sailors during uncertain times.

“Last year’s inaugural IN BAY distance race was a big hit,” said Event Chair Pat Kennedy, “because it allowed a lot of people to sail who otherwise – due to Covid restrictions – wouldn’t have been able to. On top of that it was not just another buoy race on Narragansett Bay; it was an exciting short distance day race of 33 miles, starting off Fort Adams and heading north around Conanicut and Prudence Islands. That said, the OFFSHORE distance race with its overnight component and long track record is what has made the Ida Lewis Distance Race one of the most iconic events on the East Coast.”

Junior crew sailing offshore
The OFFSHORE distance race starts off historic Fort Adams and finishes in front of the lighthouse that serves as the clubhouse for Ida Lewis Yacht Club, the event’s host. Based on wind and sea conditions, the overnight course is chosen by the Ida Lewis Race Committee just prior to the start and it can be anywhere from 112 to 169 nautical miles. The courses are aptly named for the scenic waypoints and offshore buoys (marks of the course): “Buzzards Bay”, “Point Judith”, “Block Island” and “Montauk”.

“We have been racing the Ida Lewis Distance Race OFFSHORE event since 2013,” said EC Helme (Newport, R.I.), skipper of the J/92 SPIRIT that has twice taken a second in its PHRF class. “Our typical program is really just day racing since the boat is pretty sparse, but the OFFSHORE race is perfect for a smaller boat. It’s a reasonable distance; never too far from a good bailout point; and usually there are boats that are similar enough to us to make it directly competitive. It’s a chance to push ourselves a bit and figure out currents, winds and tactics we don’t normally get to deal with.”

J/109 sailing offshore
One of the first teams to sign up this year for the OFFSHORE race was Bill Kneller’s (Newport, R.I.) J/109 VENTO SOLARE, which placed third in class last year in the IN BAY race, finishing the course in just over five hours.

“On the first leg from the start off Rose Island to R2 off Brenton Reef it was a spinnaker run,” said Kneller. “Our strategy was simple - sail our own race away from other boats, do transitions methodically with ample time to execute, and constantly change trim to optimize for the ever-changing conditions. The strategy paid off to reach the podium.” 

Youth and Collegiate Challenge
Youth and Collegiate challenges have been popular components of the Ida Lewis Distance Race, encouraging a healthy future for the sport of sailing. With special trophies for each, the challenges are applied to both OFFSHORE and IN BAY racing.

Youth entries must consist of a minimum of two adults (one designated as Captain), and more than 40% of the crew must have reached their 14th birthday but not their 18th birthday prior to August 20, 2021.

Collegiate entries also must consist of a minimum of two adults (one designated as Captain), and more than 40% of the crew shall not reach their 26th birthday prior to August 20, 2021.

Compete for LOTS of Trophies!
Trophies for the Ida Lewis Distance Race OFFSHORE race will be given in ORC, PHRF (Aloha and Coronet divisions), ORC Double-handed and PHRF Cruising Spinnaker classes. Trophies for the IN BAY race will be given in PHRF (Aloha and Coronet divisions), PHRF Double-Handed and PHRF Cruising Spinnaker classes.

GMT Composites Boat of the Year Series
For 2021, the Ida Lewis Distance Race IN BAY race has been included as a qualifying event in the Narragansett Bay Yachting Association’s Boat of the Year series. The trophy for the series – the Narragansett Bay Boat of the Year Trophy sponsored by GMT Composites – is awarded in the Fall to the owner of the boat on Narragansett Bay that has achieved the best overall performance for the season.

For questions, please contact Ida Lewis Distance Race Chairman- Pat Kennedy- email"".  For more sailing information on the Ida Lewis Distance Race
J/80 World Championship

J/80 World Championship Update

(Copenhagen, Denmark)- The KDY (Royal Danish Yacht Club) are hosting the 2021 J/80 World Championship in Copenhagen, Denmark. They have already postponed the event once due to covid-19 pandemic issues in Europe. it is now expected to be hosted in July.

"Hygge" (enjoying life's simple pleasures) isn’t everything, but...

As National Geographic so aptly explains it, “Denmark's capital has become the urban overlord of doing things the right way. They call it the happiest city in the world. So, what's the secret? Image-wise, everything in recent years seems to have gone the city's way. The omnipresence of the Danish concept hygge has helped paint it as a place of candlelit good times...”

It certainly has, and it is. But "hygge" isn’t everything. We’d like to add 1) a positive outlook and 2) sailing of course!

J/80 World Championship- Copenhagen, Denmark
Staying positive and moving ahead in our preparations
As many events have been moved into the month of September – lately even the Kiel Week we still believe that the J/80 World Championship in July will be OK. Who knows this may even be the racing season opening event! How is that for at title? We are certainly working hard in order to have all our ducks (and docks) in a row for when you get here. We are confident the J/80 Worlds will be the start of the international racing season here.

There is very strong interest in the regatta as it's an "Open" event. The entries are coming in as well are international requests for rental boats, and in the upcoming weeks you will read more about accommodation and travel arrangements as well as boat rental opportunities and you may even find out why the Spaniards cannot win the trophy – again!

If you have questions, please contact us at email-  For more J/80 World Championship sailing information
J/Gear April Special

J/Gear April 20% Off Special!

Awesome Under Armour Performance Polo shirt!

(Newport, RI)- Here is an excellent opportunity for the whole crew to get Under Armour Polo shirts at a special price. Under Armour have been a leader in the performance arena for some time now and their gear is perfect for a marine application. This polo boasts rugged construction and features a distinctive comfortable fit.

The fabric is 95% polyester, 5% elastane, it is a smooth, soft anti-pill fabric, has an anti-odor technology to prevent the growth of odor causing bacteria, and offers 30+ UPF protection from the sun’s harmful rays!
Order your beautiful, comfy Under Armour Performance Polo here

Sailing Calendar

Apr 2-4- St Petersburg NOOD Regatta- St Petersburg, FL
Apr 8-11- Charleston Race Week- Charleston, SC
Apr 30- May 2- Annapolis NOOD Regatta- Annapolis, MD
Apr 30- May 2- J/111 North American Championship- Annapolis, MD
May 9-15- J/70 North American Championship- Annapolis, MD 

For additional J/Regatta and Event dates in your region, please refer to the on-line J/Sailing Calendar.
J/111 sailing St Thomas, USVI

Perfect St. Thomas International Regatta!

(St. Thomas, USVI)– With perfect conditions of 15 to 20 knots of breeze out of the east, keen competition and professionally set racecourses, the weather Gods delivered in spades for the 2021 St. Thomas International Regatta (STIR).

After six round-the-islands races over three days, Marco Teixidor's J/111 CACHONDO posted a pair of podium finishes to ultimately take fourth in class. While missing the podium by just four points, it was big smiles pasted across their faces at the conclusion of the racing on Sunday...what's not to love about Caribbean racing in classic tradewinds, sun, and perfect "shorts & shades" weather!

IC24s sailing St Thomas, USVI
Following 15 sprint-style windward-leeward races also in a trio of days, St. Thomas, USVI’s Chris Rosenberg led the One-Design IC24 Class. Not surprisingly, it was experienced J/24 sailors that knew how to make these modded-J/24s go fast in the often-shifty conditions along the shoreline. Top USA team was a person familiar to most sailors in the J/70 and J/24 classes- David Franzel of Boston, MA; he skippered MAGIC BUS to earn the bronze on the podium. 

The 14-boat IC24 Class proved the most competitive with it being nearly anyone’s win going into the last day of racing. In the end, Rosenberg, who served as tactician, with St. Thomas’ two-time Olympic sailor Cy Thompson on the helm, and experienced St. Thomas sailor Addison Caproni on the bow, won the class on BILL T.

St Thomas Yacht Club
“The first day for us was a learning curve, then on day two and three we honed in on what was working,” says Rosenberg. “It takes two sails to win, and Addison trimmed the jib perfectly. Cy was spot on with every start within a half a boat length of the line. It takes three to win and that’s what we worked hard to accomplish.”

J/111 sailing off St Thomas, USVI
“Congratulations to the participants of this year’s St. Thomas International Regatta and kudos to the St. Thomas Yacht Club for executing a successful and safe event,” says Commissioner of Tourism Joseph Boschulte. “The St. Thomas International Regatta was the only major regatta in the Caribbean that wasn’t canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This is a testament to the insightful leadership and smart policies enacted by the Government of the U.S. Virgin Islands to ensure we can offer fun events and engaging experiences while keeping our residents and visitors safe. We look forward to welcoming everyone back for the amazing marine schedule of events being rolled out throughout the remainder of the year.”  For more St Thomas International Regatta sailing information
J/70 sailing off Miami, FL

SAIL 22 J/70 Tuning Regatta- A Great Learning Experience

(Coconut Grove, FL)- Over the course of our "pandemic winter" of 2020/2021, there have been several imaginative events that were created for sailors that enabled them to go sailing in a safe, healthy way and adhere to any known pandemic "safe behavior" guidelines.

One of those events in Florida has been Ed and Becky Furry's SAIL 22 J/70 Tuning Regatta. The first event took place on Tampa Bay hosted at Davis Island Yacht Club and the second just took place off Coconut Grove (south Miami) with host Shake-A-Leg providing launch/ docking facilities. The dozen J/70 teams that participated enjoyed two days of very nice spring sailing on the gorgeous aquamarine waters of Biscayne Bay. The goal for the event was "training" and not focused on "winning". As such, there was constant on-the-water coaching and discussions amongst teams regards boat-speed, boat-handling, and sail trim/ rig tune setups. 

In the end, several notable teams participated that offered their expertise to others, as well as picking up a few pointers themselves! Those teams included Pam Rose's ROSEBUD with Willem Van Waay aboard (3x J/70 World Champion crew), Laura Grondin's DARK ENERGY with Taylor Canfield providing guidance (multiple Match Race World Champion), Brian Keane's SAVASANA, and Buddy Cribb's VICTORY with Greiner Hobbs directing traffic (a multiple College All-American).

On the leaderboard, it was David Janetti's VERY ODD topping out the dozen crews, perhaps learning fastest from all the training/ speed lessons. Second was Chicagoan John Heaton' EMPEIRIA and third was Pam Rose's ROSEBUD. Kudos to class newcomer Doug Newhouse on YONDER and Lauran Grondin's DARK ENERGY for each dialing themselves in well-enough to win some races against very talented teams. Thanks to the Furry's SAIL 22 for organizing such a productive, helpful event ( 
For more SAIL 22 J/70 Tuning Regatta 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/105 sailboat for sale

Good Value 2002 J/105 Sailboat for Sale

Less Demands + Fun = Best Sailing Value A fun and forgiving performance boat that is easy to sail, J/105 offers low maintenance with a simple layout, has great performance, a large cockpit, predictable handling characteristics and makes no pretenses of being a distance cruiser or live-aboard. There is less to maintain as all the extra Cabinetry and weight of things you won't use aren't there. So instead of varnishing toe-rails and troubleshooting systems you'll be enjoying a sail with friends. With less demands placed on you and your crew J/105 is more fun to own.  For more J/105 Bear Spirit used sailboat information

J/111 Sailing Anarchy retro perspective

J/111 Sailing Anarchy Retrospective

In his ongoing series of exploring why certain race boats generate a strong passion by a broad spectrum of sailors to either sail them or own them, Sailing Anarchy's Scot Tempesta hopped aboard a J/111 in San Diego, CA to offer up his point of view on this evergreen offshore racer.  Enjoy the video- more about the J/111 here.
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