April 23rd, 2014

J/70s flying off seas in MonacoAnnapolis Spring Boat Show
Featuring the HOT New J/88 and the Cool J/70!
(Annapolis, MD)- North Point Yacht Sales will be participating in the Annapolis Spring Boat Show next weekend and will have a J/88 and a J/70 on  display.  This is a regional event held annually in the spring at the City Docks in downtown Annapolis, the center of the sailing universe in Chesapeake Bay.  For more show information, please be sure to visit the US Boat Show site.

The following weekend, the Sperry Top-Sider Annapolis NOOD Regatta, hosted by Sailing World magazine and the Annapolis Yacht Club will be taking place— in short, it’s an “all weekend boat show” for J/70s and others in the “J/stable”.  For more Annapolis NOOD sailing information

It’s two completely full weekends of “hot, hot, hot” J/Boats action in Annapolis! Please be sure to contact Ken Comerford at Northpoint Yacht Sales- cell# 410-991-1511 or email-Ken@northpointyachtsales.com

J/111 World Championships- Royal Yacht Squadron- Cowes, Isle of Wight, EnglandJ/111 World Championship
2014 Announcement

(Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- Entries are now open for the J/111 World Championship 2014 which will be hosted by the Royal Yacht Squadron in Cowes, UK, from Tuesday 19th August to Sunday 24th August 2014. Racing will commence on Wednesday 20th of August and twelve races are scheduled over five days.

The J/111 World Championship 2014 will be preceded by the J/111 European Championship 2014 which will take place during Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week. Racing at the European Championship will start on Saturday 2nd August and will conclude on Tuesday 5th of August. Online entries are open now athttp://www.aamcowesweek.co.uk

J/111 one-design sailing upwind off Cowes, EnglandA strong international entry is expected for both of these key J/111 regattas. The J/111 European Championship will be raced on the same waters as the J/111 World Championship thereby providing visiting teams the opportunity to gain valuable insight and experience sailing on the challenging waters of the Solent, the spiritual home of British yacht racing.

An entry of between 20 to 25 boats is expected for the World Championship and expressions of interest from teams keen to compete at this inaugural J/111 World Championship have been received from France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, Norway, South Africa, Hong Kong and the USA.

The UK J/111 fleet is already enormously excited about the event and the teams are all firmly focussed on results. Dedicated coaching and training weekends are already underway in the UK and whilst the teamwork on board each boat is improving and the camaraderie between the teams is building, the competition in the UK J/111 fleet is hotter than ever.

J/111 one-designs starting- Dartmouth, EnglandWith so many international teams planning to visit British shores to compete at the J/111 World Championship it is especially fitting that this first world championship for the J/111 Class is to be hosted by the Royal Yacht Squadron, the most prestigious yacht club in the United Kingdom. In an auspicious and functional symmetry, the 2015 J/111 World Championship will be hosted in the USA by the New York Yacht Club in Newport, Rhode Island before returning to the Royal Yacht Squadron in 2016.

The J/111 International Class Associated is proud and privileged to announce that this two year rotation of the J/111 World Championship between the premier yacht clubs of the UK and the USA, the Royal Yacht Squadron and the New York Yacht Club, has been established for the foreseeable future, enabling J/111 owners to make long-term regatta plans based on top flight competition and consistent race management of the highest standard.

The J/111 class welcomes aboard the regatta sponsors- North Sails UK (www.uk.northsails.com), Hudson Wight Performance Sailwear (www.hudsonwight.com), Grapefruit Graphics (www.grapefruitgraphics.co.uk), Wight Vodka (www.wightvodka.com), and Spinlock (www.spinlock.co.uk).

For more information on the J/111 European Championship 2014 or the J/111 World Championship 2014, including the availability of boats for charter, please contact Paul Heys at Key Yachting on +44-(0)2380- 455669.  The Royal Yacht Squadron entry and Notice of Race sailing information

J/22 World Championship- South AfricaJ/22 Worlds Preview
(Deneysville, South Africa)- The J/22 World Championships are about to take place for the first time in class history in South Africa from April 26 to May 3rd. The South African J/22 class is hosting the event at the Vaal Dam situated in the Northern Free State Province. The Deneysville Aquatic Club, in the small village of Deneysville on the Free State side of the dam, will be the privileged co-host the social events. The regatta centre and base for the fleet will be at Manten Marina, also situated in the village of Deneysville. The amazing facilities at this marina will provide all the necessary amenities for docking of all participating J/22’s. All the clubs, bed and breakfast accommodations and residents have promised to make this a memorable event for the sailors, families and friends in the regatta.

The host club- Deneysville A.C.- renowned for its hospitality and is pulling out all the stops to co-host the event. The full-time catering facilities in the club house will provide the sailors plenty of food and beverage throughout the event. They also offer campsite accommodation to all the competitors on the club grounds. Alternatively, excellent camping facilities are also offered at Lake Deneysville Yacht Club with much larger camping space.

The weather forecast for both sailing and camping looks absolutely stunning!  Sunny skies, starry nights for an entire week with temperatures ranging into low 70s F in the daytime and high 40s at night.  Winds are forecast to range from 5-12 kts all week for SW-NW and from NE-SE quadrants. Check out the daily forecasts here- http://bit.ly/1nGiv7a

The turn-out for the event has been nothing if not enormous for this corner of the world- forty-one teams are sailing with representatives from all over South Africa, the Cayman Islands and Germany.  Many familiar names from the South African J/22 class are sailing, those who’ve been in the top five in past events like the provincial and national championships, such as LAUGH A MINUTE (John Bruckmann), MAJIC (Jessica Lenz), US’N’J (Graham Baker), AMTEC RACING (Marcello Marica and Amtec’s Mike Hayton), CELL C (Richard Weiderhold), SHAMBLES (Shellee Nel), ULLMAN SAILS (Craig Millar), and Donovan Kruger on HAKAHANA.

The German J/22 Class is well represented with one of their top teams, Svend Hartog sailing TRICKY DICKY.  And, the top Cayman Islands team, Mike & Simon Farrington, will be racing TWO STROKE.  While all these teams are certainly familiar faces to many in the J/22 S.A. world, there are certain to be some spoilers in the crowd who rise to the occasion and walk off with a pile of silverware.   For more J/22 World Championship sailing information

Newport 2 Ensenada RaceNewport 2 Ensenada Preview
(Newport Beach, CA)- The annual Newport to Ensenada Yacht Race is a 125nm dash from the starting line off the Newport Beach breakwater down to Ensenada, Mexico.  It has been billed as the largest yacht race in the world, with an emphasis on camaraderie as well as competition.  It has attracted fun-seeking novices and celebrities from around the world. People such as movie producer Milton Bren, well-known actors Buddy Ebsen and Humphrey Bogart, Walter Cronkite- anchorman for the CBS Evening News, comedienne Vicki Lawrence and Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Paul Conrad have raced alongside world-class skippers like America’s Cup winners Dennis Conner and Bill Ficker and multiple one-design World Champion- Dave Ullman.

With more than 20 classes, the race includes an enormous variety of boats ranging from ultra-light maxi-yachts to the non-spinnaker classes and even 60-70 foot ORMA and MOD trimarans capable of 40kts-plus speeds. While the race has seen entries north of 600 boats in the past, this year’s event will have 155 boats competing for dozens of trophies that are awarded for just about every imaginable performance.  

N2E harbor startThe weather promises to be epic, with winds starting in the 7-12 kts range for the early starts and then building into the high teens or low 20s by evening.  The latest weather model runs (NAM, GFS, ECMWF) have moved the breeze build-up earlier by several hours so maybe that trend will continue and there will be lots of pressure earlier than currently anticipated. As it stands the fastest boats should finish around 8pm if they sail the best course possible. The breeze is forecast to stay up all night and even the slowest boats should be in by mid-morning. The sea state could be challenging for unprepared crews, but many boats will revel in the conditions.  

Amongst those who’ve been dreaming about a forecast like this for years has to be Viggo Torbensen sailing the well-traveled J/125 TIME SHAVER.  Both he and fellow J/125 owner Mark Surber on DERIVATIVE are going to be “stoked”, to say the least!  Joining them in the fifteen boat PHRF A Class are also a proven offshore sled, Carolyn Parks J/145 RADIO FLYER and two J/160s-  INNOCENT MERRIMENT (John Lyon) and INDIGO (Paul Margis).  The lone “J” team in the PHRF B Class of eight boats is the
J/122 T.K.O. skippered by owner John Raymont.

The only known offshore keelboat one-design class sailing in the N2E is PHRF C, a fleet of six J/120s.  The daunting part about this class is that every single boat has won some event in the J/120s in recent times. The boats that are participating read like a “who’s who” in this West Coast class, including ADIOS (Peter Bretschger), FEE EVENT (Chuck Wert), J-ALMIGHTY (Mike Hatch), JIM (John Snook/ Ron Masterson), POLE DANCER (Terri & Tom Manok),  and SHENANIGANS (Gary Winton).

In the nine boat PHRF D Class is one of the more renowned West Coast “J” teams, Seth Hall’s beautiful navy blue J/124 MARISOL.  Yes, this is the same boat that has supported the youth/ junior yacht club programs on their weekly “beer can” races, where an entire crew of kids under 18 race the boat every week.  How cool is that!?

The N2E marks the offshore debut of the J/88 in the twelve boat PHRF E Division.  Called CRAZY EIGHTS, her new owner is the famous nationally syndicated radio talk-show host- Dr. Laura Schlessinger- from Santa Barbara, California.  Her experienced offshore team will be up against two of the best J/109s on the West Coast, John Shulze’s LINSTAR and PATRIOT (sailed by the duo of Jon Turner & Don Albrecht).

Two veteran J/35s will be competing for line and handicap honors in the seven boat PHRF F class, including BACKDRAFT skippered by Steve Worchester and RIVAL helmed by Brian McKenna.

Finally, the seven boat PHRF G class will also see another “J” match-race scenario with two J/105s in the hunt for some silver; they are Tom Bollay’s ARMIDA and Juan Lois’s ROCINANTE.

Watch this space closely starting Friday afternoon Pacific time as there is a good chance that race records may be broken and that many J/Teams may be on the leaderboard when it’s all said and done by Saturday noon.  For more Newport to Ensenada sailing information

J/70's sailing at Key West Race WeekQuantum Key West Race Week 2015 Update
(Key West, Florida Keys)- Classes and sailors from across the country and around the world already have Quantum Key West 2015 on their winter calendars. Boats ranging in size from 23 to 72 feet will compete in the waters off America’s southernmost city during the 28th edition of Key West Race Week, scheduled for January 18-23.
“Quantum Sail Design Group and its backers recognize how important this international event is to sailing in North America,” commented Ed Reynolds, Quantum President. “For nearly 3 decades Key West has kicked off racing here in the U.S. with a superb event that sets the standard for the entire year.”

Boats big and small are already making plans for North America’s premiere winter event. The ever-popular J/70 class may see this year’s 60-boat turnout grow to 70-80 according to class sources.  Kathy Parks, owner of SUNDOG, shares the enthusiasm of many other J/70 owners… “The Division 2 race committee gave us another great Quantum Key West Regatta. I love the 5 days of racing, which we rarely see anywhere else and we love the energy at the panels, party and awards.”

A notable component of the Key West event since year 1 back in 1988 has been the PHRF racing. While there may not be the number of classes that were commonplace a decade ago, the significance of a class win is unchanged. “It feels fantastic to finally win here in Key West,” said Bill Sweetser after his PHRF 2 win on the J/109 RUSH. “You could say we got the monkey off our back, or maybe it was a gorilla… Everybody is so ecstatic. We can’t wait to get the whole crew up on stage at the awards party again.”
Expect another heavy dose of J/Boats next January with as many as five J/111’s in PHRF 1 and the J/88s expecting to make some noise in PHRF 2. The Event Organizer will be featuring PHRF courses that include reaching legs to augment the traditional windward / leeward courses.
Other classes expected back with their highly competitive racing include the J/80’s and there is talk of a J/105 Key West revival following a brief hiatus. This popular one design class featured some of the most competitive racing in Key West for a number of years and would be a welcome addition to the 2015 fleet.
“Where else would you want to be on the third week of January?” asked multiple world champion Cam Appleton. “I’ve done my share of race weeks over the years in any number of classes and the boat you race on really doesn’t matter – the conditions are always terrific, the race committee work and event management are unsurpassed, and the competition is always full on. When I think of sailing in the U.S. I think about Key West Race Week.”
This will be the fourth straight year that Quantum will serve as title sponsor and Reynolds said the Michigan-based sail-making company has enjoyed its partnership with Premiere Racing. “It’s been a great relationship because we both have the same interests in mind, which is to keep an iconic regatta moving forward. Quantum’s goal is to perpetuate our sport by supporting one of the finest events in the country.”
For more Quantum Key West Race Week 2015 sailing information

J/80s sailing J/World clinicYachting Cup Clinic and Regatta Experience
(San Diego, CA)- Come on out to the beautiful San Diego Yacht Club for their renowned spring event, Yachting Cup, and race with J/World from April 30th to May 4th.

This year marks the 41st year of San Diego Yacht Club’s signature regatta, the Yachting Cup. This premiere regatta brings together competitive fleet and one-design racing at multiple venues in San Diego. This is an excellent warm up for the racing season, so come visit us in beautiful San Diego, then go home ready to take on all comers!

J/World, the Performance Sailing School, will be offering sailors the opportunity to come play (and learn) during this special event.  We will be hosting a three day racing clinic prior to the regatta, which will include boat-handling, sail handling, strategy, tactics, rules, etc. etc…  all the elements which will contribute to a successful regatta.  

Then it is test time…  and we have the ultimate test:  a real regatta!  Each of our J/80s will have teams of three students plus one coach per boat.  Everyone aboard will rotate through all the positions while getting the positive insights of one of our renowned J World instructors.

Availability is limited, so reserve your space early ($400 deposit)!  Call 800-910-1101 or visit J/World San Diego website.

J/44s sailing American YC SeriesJ/Fleets Sailing American YC Spring Series
(Rye, New York)- On Long Island Sound, the racing season gets underway with American Yacht Club’s Spring Series, where J/Boats are well represented for two weekends of racing- April 26-27 and May 3-4. There are so many J/Teams, it amounts to a “J/Fest Spring LIS Championships”.

Seventy-eight boats are participating, including fifty-seven J/Teams (73% of the entire fleet)!  One Design fleets are strong for the J/44’s (7 boats), J/105’s, J/109’s and, especially, the 14-boat J/70 fleet (it’s their AYC Spring Series debut). The new J/88 will debut in PHRF competition with a PHRF 87 handicap, and the J/29, J/92, J/111, J/122 and J/133 round out the scratch sheet.

If you’re missing out on the fun, please contact J/Dealer McMichael Yacht Brokers at info@mcmyacht.com or (914)-381-5900 to get a ride!For more American YC Spring Series sailing information

J/Sailing News

The Sun Never Sets on J’s Sailing Worldwide

What an epic week just transpired for sailing regattas around the world.  Starting in Europe, the first major regatta of the spring sailing kicked off with the giant SPI Ouest France Intermarche Regatta sailed off the quaint, beautiful fishing village of La Trinite sur Mer, France.  Yet another huge J/80 fleet was joined by a strong J/70 class, making their debut in this amazing regatta.  Also sailing were a number of J’s in IRC Handicap fleets, with a mix J/122s, J/109s, J/97s, J/92s, J/35s, J/105s and J/24s spread across several divisions.  

Heading over to the Pacific, we find the Australian J/24 class just completed their Victoria State Championships on a gorgeous weekend.  Nearby, a J/124 recently sailed the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron Cruise in parts north of Sydney.  Even further north of them, a J/145 just partook in the Rolex China Sea Race- a 565nm “walk-in-the-park” from Hong Kong to Subic Bay, Philippines.

Heading still further east across the Pacific and the continental USA, the J/24s hosted their famous Easter Regatta on Lake Murray near Columbia, South Carolina.

Finally, Les Voiles de St Barths sailed its fifth edition and, like fine wine, seems to get much, much better every year.  A fleet of J’s (J/125, 2 x J/120, J/111, 2 x J/109) were sailing in some of the finest conditions the Caribbean had to offer over a week-long bacchanalian festival hosted in Gustavia Harbour, St Barths.

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:

Mar 16- Apr 27- Warsash Spring Series- Warsash, England
Apr 26-May 3- J/22 World Championship- Deneysville, South Africa
May 2-4- Annapolis NOOD Regatta- Annapolis YC- Annapolis, MD
May 16-18- J/22 North Americans- Annapolis YC- Annapolis, MD
May 16-18- Seattle NOOD Regatta- Seattle, WA
May 24-26- Swiftsure Race- Royal Victoria YC- Victoria, BC, Canada
May 27- Jun 9- Delta Lloyd North Sea Week- Scheveningen, Netherlands
May 28- Jun 1- J/22 Europeans- Cameret-sur-Mer, France
May 29-Jun 2- Italian J/24 Nationals- Tirano, Italy
May 30- Susan Hood Trophy Race- Mississauga, ONT, Canada
May 31- Delta Ditch Run- Stockton Sailing Club- Stockton, CA
Jun 6-8- Chicago NOOD Regatta- Chicago YC- Chicago, IL
Jun 6-9 Norseewoche- Heligoland, Germany
Jun 9-15- Normandy Sailing Week- Le Havre, France
Jun 13-22- Cleveland Race Week- Cleveland, OH

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

J/80s sailing SPI Ouest France regattaGlorious SPI OUEST Regatta
J/70s & J/80s Enjoy Great Sailing Weather
(La Trinite-sur-Mer, France)- It was yet another fun, challenging SPI Ouest France Intermarche Regatta that was held from April 17th to 21st on Quiberon Bay.  The 300+ boats participating were not disappointed with the sunny breezy weather, certainly a far cry from last year’s event that saw some teams suffer hypothermia in the cold, stormy conditions.

J/80 sailboats- starting at SPI Ouest FranceThe marquee fleet was again the enormous International J/80 class with eighty-nine boats on the starting line.  After an exhausting twelve races over the four days, the winner was ultimately determined on the outcome of the last race, new energetic talent confronting and overcoming a long-time class veteran.  By sailing an extraordinarily consistent series, Morgan Lagraviere on SAFRAN clearly stepped up his game and by never finishing worse than 10th, managed to win the regatta by one point after posting a 4th in the last race.  Sailing a tough series was Sylvain Pellissier’s veteran crew on VOILERIE ALL PURPOSE, taking second with 62 pts total after having to count a last race 21st, much to their disappointment.  In fact, for all intents and purposes, it looked like Pellisier’s crew had won the regatta going into the last race after posting a 1-2 scoreline in races #10 and #11- such is racing in a big fleet.  Third behind them was another class up-and-comer, Matthieu Salomon sailing CHARIOT PLUS- VANNES UTILITAIRES with 80 pts net.  Rounding out the top five were Maxime Mesnil on COPILOTES- NORMANDY ELITE TEAM in 4th and Gael Jaffrezic on SAILING EXPERIENCE in 5th.  Top Spanish team was Inigo Jauregui’s GOLD SAILING in 6th.

J/70s sailing SPI Ouest France off La Trinite sur Mer, FranceThe J/70s enjoyed equally fun racing over the four days, also managing to sail twelve races in all!  However, unlike the 80’s, the 70’s saw a dominant performance put in by Luc Sambron sailing HEMON-CAMUS.  Sambron’s team are former top J/80 sailors and have taken quickly to the J/70 performance envelope.  By taking eight 1sts and three 3rds (tossing a 3rd!) for a total of 15 pts, it was clear they were the runaway winner.  However, giving them a strong run for the roses in the last five races was T. Mellano’s LE HAVRE NAUTIQUE.  Mellano’s crew had troubles in races 4, 5 & 6 but sailed a 2-2-1-1-2 to race back up the ladder to capture second overall for a total of 47 pts.   Third in class was F. Charles’s crew on SUPER U LANMEUR- CABINET ABALLEA A (quite the sponsor name, eh?) with 51 pts.  The balance of the top five was Jan Bergh’s Swedish KSSS YC sailing team on MOVEIT and Jm. Gosset’s LOCATION SPORT BOAT in 4th & 5th, respectively.

In IRC handicap world, two of the J/122s in IRC 1 class put in good performances.  The highlight of MADE IN LOVE’s (Jm. Patier) performance over the seven race series was a 1-3 in the last two races to capture fourth overall.  SPARKLING CHARTER (F. Lognonne) had a consistent series with finishes predominantly in the top ten  to take ninth in class.

It was the classic, beautifully restored J/35 KNIGHT BUILD LIMITED, sailed by J. Charmers from Weymouth Sailing Club in Great Britain, that took top honors for J/Teams with a sixth in IRC 2 class, notably winning the last race to celebrate with a wee bit of champagne and a few “good on ya’s” after cracking the top ten only once before with a third in race four.
J/24s sailing SPI Ouest FranceSailing in IRC 4-A were twin duos of J/97s and J/92s’s all of which sailed against most of the top French IRC boats in the category.  Topping the charts for J sailors was the J/97 MISPIKEL V sailed by B. Fagart to a 4th in class.  Just behind them was the J/92s DR JEKYLL skippered by T Bidon taking a 9th, followed by the J/97 PICKWICK (P. Nouzille) in 10th and the other J/92s SABOT (M. Demazure) in 16th.

Making up part of the IRC 4-B class are a trio of J/24s, with two of them sailing respectably enough for a 35+ year old design to finish in the top ten!  Taking top J/24 honors was INSULARIS (A. Garcia) in 4th place followed by fellow colleagues on JINETTE (C. Gury) in 9th overall.   For more SPI Ouest France sailing information

J/125 Stark Raving Mad- sailing Les Voiles St BarthsJ/Crews Excel @ Les Voiles de St. Barths Regatta
J/125 & J/109 Win, J/111 Takes Silver
(Gustavia, St Barths)- Sailing in just about every condition the Caribbean can throw at the fleet, from uncharacteristic light airs on the first day to line squalls punctuated by brilliant, dramatic sunshine on the second day to a tempest in a teapot for the last two days on Friday & the Saturday finale, it would be fair to say the sailors in the fifth edition of Les Voiles de St. Barths simply “loved” racing in “the emerald of Caribbean sailing” regattas (or would it be the “champagne” or “rose’” edition?)— far too many superlatives to consider for a fun, sophisticated event that deserves such accolades and more.

Les Voiles has continued to grow every year, both in entry numbers and shoreside activities. It’s no wonder- the sights, sounds, aquamarine waters, epic weather, spectacular beaches, majestic mountain cliffs, exotic French hosts and awesome shoreside festivities are the ultimate “sailing cocktail” found anywhere in the world.

This year’s seventy boat fleet from across the world were simply enthralled with the entire scene, teams came from the Caribbean (St. Barth, St. Maarten, Anguilla, Martinique, Antigua, BVI, Puerto Rico) as well as the U.S., Canada, the U.K., The Netherlands, France, Spain, Malta, Sweden, Australia and Ireland.

J/111 J-Boss sailing Les Voiles St BarthsThe seven J/Teams that participated excelled in the variable conditions, demonstrating yet again the amazing capability for “J” designs to sail in just about anything thrown at them across the weather spectrum- flat waters, light winds to massive breaking seas in 20-28 kts on the nose.  Leading the charge in Spinnaker Racing 1 Class was Jim Madden’s champion crew aboard the J/125 STARK RAVING MAD, winning a hard fought class of “dragsters” on the last day.  The J/111 J-BOSS had a complete French crew, with owner Eddy Chalano and fellow J/111 owner of LE JOUET (Stéphane Blanchard) splitting the crew to form a potent team  to take second in Spinnaker Racing 3.  The Spinnaker Racing 4 Class saw the J/109 POCKET ROCKET take class honors with David Cullen’s Irish crew doing a “wee bit” of celebrating after the regatta!  Note- the magnums of Veuve Clicquot champagne given to EVERY boat that finished the last race on the last day was emblematic of the “class act” this regatta has become over the past five years!
Gustavia Harbour, St Barths- during Les Voiles St Barths regattaDay 1 Report- On the first day, Gustavia’s Quai General de Gaulle was abuzz with competitors. With nine classes separated into four starts, the fleet was sent off in a light southeasterly breeze of about 8-10 knots, sailing courses of 21nm. The light breeze made for a long day for most, though no one was complaining given the otherwise ideal conditions. With the breeze forecast to build throughout the week, all boats proved, ultimately, they would have a chance to revel in their best conditions.

Day 2 Report- The Weather Gods had promised more breeze for Day 2 and it came in a steady line of squalls moving south to north across the island, presenting challenging conditions for competitors and the Race Committee alike.  After a general recall, the Maxi and Spinnaker Zero classes took off on a 17 nautical mile course along the southern coast of St. Barth, only to disappear into a driving rain and building breeze halfway up the first beat as they got raked by the first squall.

With visibility on the start line greatly diminished, the Race Committee held off for about 40 minutes, and then with persistence and a weather break before the next approaching squall, they managed to send off Spinnaker 1-2-3 classes.

J/125 Stark Raving Mad sailing fast at Les Voiles St BarthsDrag Racing was taking place in Spinnaker 1 class.  The five-boat Spinnaker 1 class had great depth of talent, and included Peter Harrison’s Jolt 2 (GBR) with Volvo veteran Campbell Field at the wheel; past Les Voiles class winner Lazy Dog, an M32, with Puerto Rico’s Sergio Sagramoso steering; and Stark Raving Mad IV (Newport Beach, Calif.), a J/125 with Tony Rey, past America’s Cup sailor and Olympic coach, serving as tactician.

Jim Madden who owns Stark Raving Mad IV, won his class at last month’s Heineken Regatta. An experienced racer, he has had a succession of Stark Raving Mad boats, including a J/160, J/145, Reichel/Pugh 66, and Swan 60. Madden likes to race with old friends and good sailors, most of them from California, with a few East Coasters, including Rey, mixed in.

Back racing at Les Voiles for the third time, Rey said, “This regatta has been a highlight of the schedule all season, so it’s fantastic to have the J/125 here; it’s a perfect boat to race here. It’s 40 feet long and high performance enough that we can really get going when it’s windy….yesterday was great; we had good sailing and we had a good battle with Lazy Dog. They managed to beat us on corrected time, but we managed to get our nose out in front. What’s great about sailing here is it’s always a tough battle, at the start and at the finish, because of the harbor effect with the wind shift. So it’s a huge challenge all around the course.”

Rey is great at shifting gears – and boats – and contrasted Stark Raving Mad IV with his ride at the St Barth’s Bucket last month: the 180-foot ketch Marie. “I’ve sailed everything in St Barth’s you can sail!,” laughed Rey. “It’s absolutely the greatest place to race in the Caribbean. Full stop. Just fantastic. I’ll come back every year if someone will have me.”

Festivities ashore included the gala soiree and auction to benefit The Brain and Spine Institute- ICM at the Eden Rock on Baie St. Jean and the famous (sometimes “infamous”) Cr
ew Party on Shell Beach with live entertainment and fireworks.  Seemingly half the regatta showed up at the “Baz”, an evening night club at the easternmost end of Gustavia Harbour, home of the famous Clarke Cooke House “Candy Store” sushi chefs David Ray once recruited many blue moons ago!

St Barths aerial view at eastern point of race courseDay 3 Report- After enjoying the regatta’s traditional lay day on Thursday at Nikki Beach (does anyone remember them serving “rose’ wine”?), which gave crews a chance to indulge in the French island’s onshore charms, it was time to get back out onto the race course.  Many regattas no longer feature such a break in the racing, but Les Voiles has maintained a five-day format (four days of racing with a mid-regatta break) since its inception five years ago, and it has proven to be a draw. In fact, more than 400 of the thousand or so sailors racing gathered at Nikki Beach on Baie Saint Jean for lunch and some organized team sports, including water polo, stand-up paddle-board races and petanque matches.

J/109 sailing Les Voiles St Barths offshoreThe morning dawned with a much fresher breeze than Wednesday and sailors prepared for a forecasted 18-25 knot southeasterly. With the race course set off the north side of the island, most of the fleet readied by tucking in reefs and setting small #4 jibs while they jockeyed for positions in the starting area.

With the breeze building, the Race Committee postponed racing, sending the fleet back to shore; however, shortly after noon, signals ashore indicated a 1:30 p.m. start for eight of the nine classes. With the wind at a steady 20-23 knots, gusting to 28 kts, the fleet enjoyed a 16 nautical mile course that took them to the north end where large ocean swells rolled through.

Daniella sailing on J/109 women's team from St BarthsAfter the day’s racing, Stark Raving Mad took a win to pose a threat to Lazy Dog’s dominance in Spinnaker Racing Class 1. Daniela De Luca, Italian crew member on the J/109 Les Voiles au Féminin in Spinnaker 4 class said, “I belong to the all-women’s crew from Saint Barthélémy. Our association is called “Les Voiles au Feminin”. It was created two years ago to promote the sport of sailing among women on the island, as all women must have access to this sport. We therefore have acquired a sailing boat, a J/109 that we bought in Saint Tropez, after Les Voiles de Saint Tropez. Our skipper, Sophie Olivaud sailed the boat across the ocean during the ARC Challenge two years ago. Ever since, we’ve sailed as many regattas in the Caribbean as we possibly could.  Our crew is a mix of experienced sailors, and newbies. It works out very well, as the atmosphere onboard is excellent. This does not mean that we don’t feel any apprehension at the start of each race, just like any male sailor, I guess. It is very exciting to sail during Les Voiles, as we get to see great sailors and fantastic boats. We feel very fortunate.”

J/109 women's team at St BarthsDay 4 Report- With several classes still up for grabs, crews going into the final day of racing were eager to get on the race course and improve their scores. The conditions remained fresh, with a 22–25 kt (gusting to 29 kts) southeasterly producing an impressive 6-12 ft swell on the island’s windward side.

Les Voiles de St. Barth Race Committee, led by Race Director Luc Poupon, carefully chose race courses to fit the conditions, sending the Spinnaker Racing 1 and 2 classes on a 22 nautical mile course and Spinnaker Racing 3 and 4 on a 16 nm course.

As spectators watched from a sculpted rock plateau 500 feet above the pristine beach of Colombier, the sailing conditions on the northern most point of St. Barths seemed epic: strong, fairly steady wind, with flat water at the starting area and the first rounding mark. At the next mark, however, the fleet began its beat around the island’s northern end into the ginormous ocean swell. A two-knot current running counter to the prevailing wind produced 6-12 ft seas that, while uncomfortable upwind, made for a rollicking ride off the breeze.

The change in conditions from the lighter wind of the regatta’s first two days (Tuesday & Wednesday) to the 20-plus knots on the latter two days (Friday and Saturday) affected several classes with boats that favored one range or the other.

J/125 sailing in rain off St BarthsOne of these was the hard-fought Spinnaker 1 class, where Jim Madden’s (Newport Beach, Calif.) J/125 Stark Raving Mad IV won class by one point. Class winner Jim Madden said of their battle, “It’s a little bit of a luck of the draw. We give them great credit, they were great competitors and I think they sailed really well.  We had a fantastic week, one of the best weeks I’ve ever had. Conditions were beautiful the first two days and outrageous the second two days. It was a ton of fun, very competitive – and what a beautiful island and wonderful environment!  Most of our crew are a core group from southern California that have been sailing together for maybe eight or nine years, and a few folks from Newport, R.I. So it’s a nice group who know their roles; they sail together, they trust each other, and most of all we have a great time, we come here to have fun. We’ll be back in St. Barth’s next year for sure!”

As for the French J/111 J-BOSS sailed by Eddy Chalono’s crew and Stéphane Blanchard’s LE JOUET crew, it was an event that will be remembered for a long time.  Blanchard commented, “Back from St Barthélemy today.  Too many photos and videos of memories that prevents me to do everything right away. Such beautiful water, magnificent winds 10-30 kts, with four days of racing with one race per day.  Every race counts and OCS’s are heavily taxed, there is no need to return for line!

In our category CSA 3 with much larger boats, we had as a main rival the Grand Soleil 43 (just like the one in Quiberon Bay).  Race 1 and 2 were run in the light-medium winds and we end up scoring two seconds on handicap to the GS43.

In the third race, it was a sustained 25 kts of breeze and with not many tactics involved, we finish second overall but fourth on handicap.  
We finally have our revenge at the end of the race 4, because after tacking upwind in a steady wind at 25 kts gusting to 30 kts, we return to Gustavia harbor with a great downwind ‘sleigh-ride’ that I think will live long in the memory of our crew members (half J-BOSS/ half-LeJOUET).  We had consistent speed under spinnaker around 14-15 kts with several long planes in excess of 20 kts and a peak at 21.6 kts!!

Second overall, hugs for all on arrival at the finish line, sprinkled Veuve Clicquot champagne everywhere (it was given to us at the finish line), have closed masterfully this beautiful event.  More to follow.”  Thanks to Stephane Blanchard for his contribution- see more here.

J/sailing team aboard the White Rhino sloopA special note- there was an extraordinary team of life-long “J” sailors and college champions aboard the 56 footer WHITE RHINO in Class 2.  Skipper-in-charge was Steve Cucchiaro (M.I.T.) sailing with a cast of characters, including Jack Slattery (Boston University), Stu Johnstone (Tufts), Cam Lewis (Univ. Rhode Island), and Brian Thomas/ Mark Laura (Univ. Washington)- in total this gang have amassed 11 College All-American awards, one College Sailor of the Year award, two J/105 North American Championships, at least one each of J/24 World, North American and West Coast Championships, two Finn Gold Cup World Championships, the first Trophee Jules Verne Record holder (breaking the famous 80 days record around the world), a second in the 470 Olympic Trials 1980, and many other awards too numerous to mention. With that deeply talented team, they managed a second place after losing a tie-break on identical records with their arch-rival AFFINITY (each boat had two 1sts and two 2nds!). The winner in that epic battle?  Jack’s brother Bob Slattery (Boston Univ.) sailing as tactician (yet another College All-American)! Small world.

The dates for the next edition of Les Voiles de St. Barth will be April 13 – 18, 2015.  Event Organizer François Tolède said, “This has been another great edition, another success. I am really pleased with the level of competition and camaraderie among all competitors and partners. The professionalism both on the water and onshore has been amazing. Thanks to all our teams, Les Voiles de St. Barth is now running smoothly, while still maintaining welcoming scale for all to enjoy.”

The evening prize-giving dockside was held in the Les Voiles de St. Barth race village, on the Quai General de Gaulle in Gustavia Harbor. Race organizers presented top-three finishers in each class with trophies, champagne and other prizes. Competitors and guests were treated to a spectacular fireworks display over Gustavia Harbor, accompanied by the live music of Joyful Noise.  West Indies Management Company (WIMCO), luxury villa rental management specialist, presented each of the winners in all eight classes a week’s stay in a luxury villa in St. Barth.  Winners also were presented with magnums of Veuve Clicquot champagne and Mount Gay Rum. No wonder so many sailing teams insist on returning after experiencing “champagne sailing and rose’ afternoons” for an entire week!   For more Les Voiles de St Barths sailing information

J/24s sailing Australian Victoria States regattaPACEMAKER Faster Than a Heart-Attack
How Suda & Crew Won The Vic-States J/24 Championships
(Victoria, Australia)- After a close and hard fought series of 8 races on Port Phillip last weekend, the MONJON 2014 Victorian State titles was won Dave Suda sailing Pacemaker. Sailing with Dave are Herschel, Luke, Sam and Rachel, pretty much the same team that has been doing it for the last 10+ years, perhaps the only team in the fleet to have been together for so long – and it showed. Dave had to drop a second place, it doesn’t get much better than that.
Dave keeps his cards close to his chest with a glimmer of a smile as he tries to keep a straight face about his plans. But I am the keeper of the royalty tags, so I know who is getting new sails, Dave – new set, Hugo new sails, the girls new genoa, mmmm … well we had a new kite and reasonably new sails.

Says Dave of the racing on Saturday, “After six months of arguably the best summer season for as long as I can remember, we finished with two perfect days, racing J24’s as hard as we can, against 16 other J24 crews who used every ounce of speed and skill to will their boat ahead of the next, on a course as well managed as any sailor could hope. I feel sorry for the J24 members that didn’t sail this weekend, for they missed another beauty.

J/24s sailing downwind at Vic States in AustraliaSaturday had four races and four different winners, with Gridlock Doug Watson and co taking heat one honours in a tight three way tussle from Pacemaker and Convicts Revenge. Race 2 was a nail biter with Convicts Revenge holding the narrowest of margins over Pacemaker at every turn and they defended multiple attacks on the final downwind leg to cross the line 2 seconds ahead.

Race 3 saw another black flag and this time Convicts Revenge had a lapse in concentration on the restart and crossed early, meanwhile the largely female crew on Hyperactive had a brilliant start to hold a comfortable lead all the way to the finish.

Race 4 and wind increased to 18 knots for the last race of the day. We eventually started second row directly behind Hugo after we left our port approach late. We couldn’t find a gap anywhere near the pin in this much improved and aggressive starting J24 fleet. We tacked very shortly after the start and ducked a few sterns to find some clear air and thankfully met a 15 degree right hand shift and extra pressure, thanks Huey! The usual suspects of Pacemaker, Convicts, By the Lee and Bruschetta VI led the fleet home.”
But let’s step back a bit. A full week’s training and boat preparation was put on hold as Melbourne had its wettest week in living memory, if nothing else the deck was clean, although there was the distinct possibility that there might now be fish living inside the boat.

J/24s sailing upwind off AustraliaRon Thompson takes us on his journey to the states. “Friday was spent with bucket and sponge getting the water out.  And the forecast was 25 to 30 knots southerly with big waves and rain again. Oh, lets just turn up and see, with a new crew with one day training and nothing in heavy conditions. Got to get up early Sat morning at 6am and do another walk around the block to lose ½ kilo as weigh in finishes at 8am.  What an ungodly hour.  We are struggling with crew weight as everyone lied last week, even me and although I lost 3 kgs, got to lose a bit more.  And it will be cold and wet on my walk!  No … surprise, actually it is not raining and I can see clouds in the sky after only seeing grey all week.  Ah, but I bet its is blowing hell on the water.  Arriving at the club and the burgees are flying nicely in a 12 knot wind.  What happened to the 30 knots, must be coming later?!”

Brendan Lee (3rd overall) leads us into Sunday. “Sunday arrived and again with beautiful blue skies and light South Easterly winds, or was it South, or East, or South South East. Okay let’s pick south and head out to sea on leg 1. Bollocks wrong choice! Next upwind leg, okay there is more South East in this, let’s go left. Bollocks wrong choice and so it went on every leg. Race 6 was a bit like race 5, a late surge on the final leg saw us scramble into a respectable position. Race 7 and the wind clocked to 180 degrees and freshening. Right this time I am going out to sea. Hey presto it worked – 2nd place but behind Dave AGAIN! 4th race, much like the 3rd…”

So we all get our few moments of glory, in race 6 Jet’s came knocking. I decide that there is a big lift on the port layline and go for it, we picked it and Jet is around the first two marks first. All good and happy and Matty is now satisfied that his trip down from Sydney was worth it. I tell the crew that all we have to do is cover. But I don’t, I tack onto what I think is the lay before Steve does and then we get knocked while he gets lifted, around the top mark 2nd and we did a bear away set, Dave does a gybe set behind us and by the time we have gybed he is level with us on what is now a lay though to the finish, he just pips us. I am consoled by the crew for at least putting us ahead – before being dumb enough to lose it.

Dave continues, “Race 7 arrived and we knew a win in the next race would be enough and then we see Convicts doing penalty turns with two minutes to the start. We happily refocus and get a great start with Hugo near the pin, then tack out right to cover the fleet. By the end of the race Convicts Revenge has recovered to a very credible 4th, behind Pacemaker, By the Lee and Doug Watson. We relax now and enjoy a great final race battle with Steve Girdis in Convicts Revenge who take the win.”

Steve is a great sailor, a sly “young” fox who smiles at me from the back of the pack (I think I must be doing quite well to be near him) and then again from the podium – how does he do that?  

Race 8 and Dave has won overall, Steve is second and Brendan third.

Brendan, “Onto the prize giving and it was Dave and
the team picking up the winners trophy again. I could have sworn I had them 8 from 8 on the starts. My trimmer says “Okay, well I may not be able to sail, but I can lift heavy boxes”. What more can a skipper want?

J/24s rounding mark in Australian Vic States regattaThere are of course lots of stories from the front to the back, Doug MacGregor, our State President is a voracious defender of the truth and tells it like it is. “Clear air was the only currency worth bothering about on a start line that felt like a combination of a scrum and an orgy.  One abiding but crucifying memory; we probably came out of the final start in 4/5 position.  We couldn’t have been happier.  Going to windward I bloody well had them … and they just sailed right over me.  I shrugged my shoulders and thought “National Champion” whatreyegonnydo?  Three tacks later we make our final tack on to the lay line for the top mark …. Lovin’ every second.  Over we go. Last place!  We invented a new word; absolfu**inguetlyfu**ingbefu**ingmusing.  Seemed to be the story of our states. It’s a wonder they didn’t throw me overboard.  I am so grateful to them for sailing with me and sticking by the boat through thin and thinner.  The silence on our boat as we sailed in after the last race was deafening.”

Kirby O’Brien, sailing on Vertigo and also one of the hard working committee team doing the weigh in, with her usual dry sense of humour also made a number of observations.  ” It all went pretty smoothly, but if I had one bit of feedback to offer, I’d say “not enough stripping”. Honestly, it just didn’t stack up to past years. Although an honourable mention does go to Daniel, who stripped with incredibly good humour considering that none of the rest of the Vertigo crew bothered to wait before getting stuck into the beers, so the 800g excess was his and his alone to deal with … albeit to the sound of our hearty encouragement and a round of applause when the final piece of attire yielded up the last required 200g’s.

I think it’s time I offered up a few rule change suggestions to the committee, all with the idea of introducing a little more sport into the weigh in process:

No more four member crews. Where’s the fun in watching sailors stroll confidently up to the scales, not even bothering to remove their shoes, as they know the 400kg limit isn’t a worry unless they convert their entire life saving into 20c coins and carry it on their backs. No more. What this situation needs is another body and all five of said bodies can take themselves off for a 10km run and return to approach the scales with the dread and trepidation that the rest of us all know and love.

No more people under 60kg!  I mean really, what is more annoying to those of us with a life of dinners still on the belt, than someone stepping up to the scales, registering an elephantine 57kg and moaning that they’ve gained since last regatta?

OK, so to the racing…well let’s see, race overview…I lost a shoe (Vice Versa and Fly Away Jay – you guys rock for randomly finding my missing shoe in the middle of the bay and bringing it back!), I got splashed a bit, pulled some ropes, forgot to pull some other ropes, got yelled at, got annoyed when a boat tacked in front of us and when we yelled “Protest! We had to change course”, he turned to us with the smile of a Cheshire cat and replied “Did not.”  Well!  May I take this chance to say simply… “Did so.” You know who you are!!

And that’s it really. We came outright last when it mattered – the race back to the crane. I think I have new life goal – to get into the dock before Pacemaker is safely tucked away into its place on the hardstand.”

A huge thanks to the J24 State Committee, Sandy YC, all the volunteers and especially to the sponsors, MONJON in particular, Anchor Marine, Bike Factory Outlet, Smart Marketing, Synergy Audio  – and also to Hugo for the delivery of 25 logo-printed protest flags! What other regatta supplies the protest flags!

Well, in the end the Thommo Cup was a fizzer this year and Jet has finally beaten Ron and Kirsty and no one ahead of us is a slug so I guess that’s a good series result. I’ve locked up the trophy cabinet again, let the dust rule supreme. There will always be another regatta.

The MONJON Victorian State Championships have proven to be the best regatta of the year again, the ultimate J/24 season grand finale.”  Thanks for contribution from Simon Grain with help from Dave, Brendan, Doug and Kirby- thanks guys.   For more J/24 MONJON Vic States sailing information

J/124 sailing off Sydney, Australia in Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron CruiseJ/124 AS YOU DO Eclipses RSYS Cruise
(Sydney, Australia)- Inspired by the New York Yacht Club’s Annual Cruise, the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron adopted a similar format with a series of races that usually include a mixture of offshore and inshore races. Due to unfavorable weather conditions and the Easter break this year, the offshore passage races were  abandoned with the series comprising of four inshore races and one offshore race.  
The J/124 AS YOU DO won Division 2 of the 45th Annual RSYS Cruise week.  She was sailed by owners Ross Littlewood and Alexandra Curtin.  The boat is set-up for shorthanded sailing with a Leisure-furl boom and Hoyt self-tacking boom system on the foredeck.

According to the RSYS Cruise News, “The results are, the cards are tallied and there will be no need to re-run the cruise next week due to lost results! It has been an excellent week with significantly better weather than everybody expected. By all accounts there has been excellent racing both in and offshore, as well as much fun had each evening.  AS YOU DO’s skipper Ross Littlewood has clearly been listening to the Youth Coaches that his Committee oversee which has led to a commendable Overall win in Division 2 with 13 points!”

Said Littlewood, “the sailing conditions varied dramatically from 20+kts to drifting conditions on some parts of the course.  But, the easy-handling performance of the J/124 made it a perfect boat for the cruise.  It was a great week!  Fun was had by all participants.  We love this boat, great for double-handing!”  Sailing photo credit- John Jeremy

J/145 sailing China Sea RaceJ/145 Cruises Rolex China Sea Race
(Hong Kong, China)-  The “China Sea Race”, Asia’s principal offshore event, started long, long ago.  On 7th April 1962, three yachts from RHKYC, one from Manila and one from Japan crossed the line at the start of the first China Sea Race. The yachts were escorted over the first 100 miles of their 600 mile journey by two minesweepers of the Hong Kong Royal Naval Reserve.

The finish was off Corregidor Island, crossing a line formed by vessels of the Philippines Navy, to be met by members of the Manila Yacht Club who had co-operated most generously with the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club in all the arrangements.

The China Sea Race was subsequently held as a biennial event. In 1964 it attracted 12 entries and with each successive race, the event grew bigger.  In 1972 it was officially recognized by the Royal Ocean Racing Club in London, England and since then it has become an undisputed Asian blue-water classic.

The 565-nm course from Hong Kong to Subic Bay, The Philippines is fraught with potholes of the weather kind so dramatic and insanely chaotic that is has caused many a navigator sleepless nights for days on end.  Case in point, this year the top few boats finished in great breeze while the chasing fleet sat becalmed!

During the final miles set against the mountainous, scenic and sunbaked approach to Subic Bay, little could separate the leading three boats (all of the TP52 variant). Said long-time J/24 and J/80 owner, Neil Pryde, “We were surging down the coast in good wind with an A3 spinnaker up reaching at 12 to 13 knots. It was incredibly exciting, boats kept changing positions because we had all been reading the same weather.”

Pryde, a Hong Kong resident and owner of Neil Pryde Sails, first competed in the race in 1968 and won the race for the first time!  The victory represents one of the most significant accomplishments of his illustrious sailing career. “It ranks as one of the more memorable victories we’ve had and we’ve won a lot of races,” said Pryde. “It means a lot to me, over the past few years I’ve not done a lot of sailing because I’ve had some health issues so to go out and still prove we can do it is a big thing for me personally. Yacht racing has been part of my life for sixty odd years. I’ve never cruised, I’ve always raced. It’s what I do.”

Cruising fast in behind the TP52’s was the J/145c REDEYE sailed by Paul Leese.  Leese and crew sailed to a 5th in class amongst a fleet of bespoke, custom IRC racers from 40 to 50 feet— not bad for a “cruiser” sailing with a shallow draft wedge-bulb keel!   For more Rolex China Sea Race sailing information

J/24s sailing Easter RegattaIngham Rolls @ J/24 Easter Regatta
(Columbia, SC)- One of the all-time spring classics on the J/24 racing calendar has always been the Easter Regatta sailed on Lake Murray in Columbia, South Carolina.  This year the awesome fleet of twenty-six J/24’s were treated to three great days of racing, an amazing weekend on the lake with nine races completed!  Sailing “lights out” all weekend was Mike Ingham with tactician Tim Healy on-board, taking top honors with ease.

Friday’s weather presented the J/24 fleet with some cloudy conditions and winds out of the North East ranging 10-15 knots. Shifty conditions provided challenging sailing and with rain on the horizon, the Race Committee was pressed to put two races on. Race one was variable shifts north to north east and puffs nearing 16 knots. Travis Odenbach finished first with Chris Stone in second and Mike Ingham close behind in third. The second and last race of the day brought us similar conditions with increase of velocity to sustained 16 knots. Finishing first was Mike Ingham, second John Poulson and third Chip Till.  “Wash, rinse, repeat”-this scenario on day one carried on throughout the weekend.

After three days of racing, the Ingham/ Healy team proved too much for the fleet, compiling an impressive 3-1-2-1-5-1-1-5-1 for a total of 15 pts net, ten pts clear of Travis Odenbach’s HONEY BADGER who had to scrape hard to hold onto second place.  Giving Odenbach’s team massive anxiety attacks was Chip Till’s infamous crew aboard MURDER INCORPORATED.  Were it not for some “brain fades” in races 3, 4, 5 Till’s crew closing four race record of 2-3-1-2 might have sprung them into second place, instead having to settle for bronze on the podium.  Peter Bream’s TEAM TARHEEL took fourth and John Poulson’s LONGSHOT took fifth.  For more J/24 Easter Regatta sailing information


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

J/95 sailing Abacos, Bahamas regatta* J/95 Bahamas Report- not too long ago, J/Dealer Craig Crossley commissioned J/95 #34 for new owners Bob & Janet Knaus who live in the Abacos, Bahamas.  Said Crossley, “When we commissioned GRUMPY TOO at Stanley’s in Barrington, Rhode Island, Bob and his son Peter joined Mark Ploch and me for the first sea trials and rig tune on Narragansett Bay. We then arranged trucking to West Palm Beach, Florida and did a re-commissioning so Peter could sail the boat over to the Bahamas islands. It is hard to imagine a more “perfect” owner with his “perfect” boat.Bob & Janet’s commentary follows: “Here’s an update on GRUMPY TOO in case you’d like to share with friends in the ‘J-World’.
J/95 sailing downwind- Abacos, Bahamas- against competitorsWe have enjoyed spending winters in this lovely spot since 1985. The weather is mild, and the water clear, warm and the most spectacular color of blue-green. The long chain of out-islands serves our waters beautifully, protecting us from the wind and waves of the Atlantic.
It is here we initially came with our cruising boats. Before long we built a house, and started spending our winters here, accumulating smaller boats along the way.
We enjoyed sailing and racing our J/80, GRUMPY OLE MEN, from 1997 until last year, when she was replaced with our new J/95, GRUMPY TOO.
What a perfect solution! No more bumping off the bottom and avoiding great sailing spots, and no compromise in racing performance. She is extremely well balanced, and a dream to sail.
J/95 winners in Hopetown Sailing ClubWe are members of the Hopetown Sailing Club, which this year celebrated its 50th anniversary.  During this past winter season, the club sponsored eight well organized non-spinnaker club races. Handicaps are determined by a combination of PHRF and Portsmouth, and then performance adjusted. The fleet averages a dozen and a half boats.  Good wind and weather allowed for all scheduled races and a lot of smiling faces.
As scratch boat in a fleet with boats as large as 45 ft, GRUMPY TOO was on her game, as she collected 4 of 7 first place trophies, and was hands down winner of the ‘Boat of the Year’ at Hopetown Sailing Club.”  For any J/cruisers that make their way down towards Hopetown, AbacosBeer-can, Bahamas, you know where to find some kindred spirits!
* The Ten Commandments of Beer-can Racing- Rob Moore was only 58 years old when he succumbed to lung cancer on Jan. 6, 2012. He was among the 20% of lung cancer victims with no history of smoking. During Rob’s short tenure on the planet, he covered a lot of ground, and was both active in the sport and a popular contributor at the Latitude 38 publication.
Rob believed strongly that sailboat racing should be competitive and fun, and to encourage participation at all levels. He was discouraged by the downturn in participation in San Francisco Bay racing, and he was constantly trying to find ways to increase the number of boats on the water.
Rob penned his “Ten Commandments of Beer-can Racing” to help tune our focus…
I) Thou shalt not take anything other than safety too seriously. If you can only remember one commandment, this is the one. Relax, have fun, and keep it light. Late to the start? So what. Over early? Big deal. No instructions? Improvise. Too windy? Quit. Not enough wind? Break out the bee. The point is to have fun, but stay safe. Like the ad says, “Safe boating is no accident.”
II) Thou shalt honor the racing rules if thou knowest them. The US Sailing 2005-2008 Racing Rules, unless specifically stated elsewhere in the Sailing Instructions, is the current rules bible. Few sailors we know have actually studied it cover to cover: it’s about as interesting as reading tax code or the phone book. For beer can racing, just remember some of the biggies (port tack boats shall avoid starboard ones; windward boats shall avoid leeward ones; and outside boats shall give room at the mark). Stay out of the way of bigger boats, pay your insurance premiums and keep a low profile unless you’re sure you know what you’re doing. Like most things, it boils down to common sense.
III) Thou shalt not run out of beer. Beer (a.k.a., brewskis, chill pills, thought cylinders) is the beverage that lends its name to ‘beer can’ racing; obviously, you don’t want to run out of the frothy nectar. Of course, you can drink whatever you want out there, but there’s a reason these things aren’t called milk bottle races, Coca-Cola can races, hot chocolate races or something else. Just why beer is so closely associated with this kind of racing escapes us at the moment, but it’s a tradition we’re happy to go along with.
IV) Thou shalt not covet thy competitor’s boat, sails, equipment, crew or PHRF rating. No excuses or whining; if you’re lucky enough to have a sailboat, just go use it! You don’t need the latest in zircon-encrusted widgetry or unobtanium sailcloth to have a great time out on the water with your friends. Even if your boat’s a heaving pig, make modest goals and work toward improving on them from week to week. Or don’t – it’s only beer can racing.
V) Thou shalt not amp out. No screaming, swearing, or overly aggressive tactics. Save that stuff for the office or, if you must, for Saturday’s ‘real’ race. If you lose it in a Friday nighter, you’re going to run out of crew – not to mention friends – in a big hurry. Downing a quick chill pill on the way to the starting line has been medically proven to have a calming influence on the nerves.   Read more about the Ten Commandments of “beer-can racing” here:

J/Cruising CommunityJ cruising directions- roll the dice and go!  Sailing to anywhere, anytime!

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

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: http://www.svceolmor.com/SVCeolMor/Welcome.html

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:http://www.svjarana.blogspot.com/

John and Mary Driver are sailing their J/130 SHAZAM for e
xtended 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 (http://web.me.com/susangrun).  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 http://www.sailmandalay.com.  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.


J/97 demo boat for saleJ/97 Demonstrator For Sale

J/97 is the first ‘J’ in 25 years (under 32’) with standing headroom and a high performance, easily driven hull.

The J/97 is an IRC dominator and is remarkably competitive in PHRF beer-can and offshore racing (first boat won the Chicago-Mackinac Race in her PHRF Class first time out!).
If you want to have your “cake and eat it, too”, you can crush your competition in style with this boat.  Plus, women love the spacious play-pen in the bow and open Euro-style stateroom!  She accommodates more crew than it takes to sail her, and was named IRC Boat of the Year in France.  No need for hotel rooms at the next regatta. This is the J/Boats demo model featured in the brochure and web and recently displayed at the fall shows.
Please see brokerage listing below: Please see brokerage listing below:

J/111 FLEETWING For Sale

This boat has been maintained to top standards by the best in the business, complete, ready-to-race and win any regatta, one-design or offshore.  The race bottom has been prepared by International Marine and for maximum performance the keel as been faired by Karl’s Speed Shop.  A custom bob stay has been added to the retractable bow spirit for flying a Code 0 Roller furling sail.  The carbon mast was recently surveyed by the builder, Hall Spars to insure maximum performance (a painted white carbon mast).  Kinder Kustom removable pipe berths for offshore distance racing. “Grand Prix” running rigging package.  Complete safety inventory.  Complete electronics, including B&G’s and navigator’s PC laptop with full navigation software (Expedition, etc).  The complete North Sails 3Di inventory is far too numerous to mention, but all in tip-top shape.
Contact Tim Kohl at East Coast Yacht Sales- Cell 203-233-9709 or email- tim@ecys.com

J/130 FAST EDDY For Sale

Fast Eddy is one of the nicest 130’s around. Fresh Water boat. The entire deck was re-done in 2012. Fast Eddy has been sailed very lightly in the last 10 years and has not been sailed at all in the last two years. Located in Milwaukee she is ready to go cruise or race. If you are looking for a 40+ cruiser racer Fast Eddy is the boat to check out. Priced to sell.
Contact Rich Stearns at Stearns Boating- 847-404-2209 cell or email- rich@stearnsboating.com

J/130 cruising racing sailboatJ/130 Dragonfly For Sale

Turn-key Bermuda package with a winning race record now available.  Dragonfly, ex-Christopher Dragon, ex-Bombardino, has a history of success and has had major upgrades over the past 4 years under her current owner.
The current owner has invested close to $100k in upgrades since 2010, including a mast overhaul, new rod rigging, new standing rigging, and re-coring of the deck where required.  This J/130 is a proven winner under her past 3 owners, and needs minimal additional upgrades to be ready for the 2014 Newport Bermuda season.  Asking $199,000- located in Mamaroneck, NY.
Contact Michael Beers at McMichaels Yacht Brokers- ph. 718)764-7215 mobile or email.

J/105 JabJab for saleJ/105 JAB-JAB For Sale

JAB-JAB is a UK registered J/105 built by J-Europe in 2007.  After being purchased in August 2012 from her previous owner, JAB JAB underwent a major overhaul and refit. The total cost of this was approximately £55,000.00, the cost for the whole project was £127,500 (US$204,000). Once the work was completed JAB-JAB was shipped to the Caribbean in November 2012, so she has not done an ocean passage.

This is a great regatta boat or just a fast and fun island or bay-hopping machine in which you can easily spend a night or two.
Standard items include fresh water tank, galley with two burner stove and ample stowage, including a large hanging wardrobe, for short cruising trips.
J/105s have been raced across the Atlantic single-handed and regularly win races in the RORC double-handed series. A J/105, Diablo-J, sailed two-handed, was RORC Boat of the Year in 2012.
Contact Hannah Passells at Key Yachting UK- Hannah@keyyachting.com or +44-(0) 2380-455669

J109 sailboatJ/109 PICANTE For Sale

Priced to move. Owner has bigger J/Boat in his sights!
Picante is a proven performer with a loft of new and used sails. The boat is ready to go for the J/109 North Americans. The boat also has an inventory of cruising sails for that family vacation.
This J/109 features the popular carbon fiber retractable bowsprit and asymmetric spinnaker system and a cruise perfect 2-cabin interior layout with standing headroom. She is designed with a very low VCG, long waterline, and generous sail plan with the horse power for competitive racing and stability for relaxed cruising when the racing crew is not aboard. The J/109 is stable, easy to sail, and a proven performance boat. There is interior volume and amenities necessary for comfortable cruising and a great dual purpose deck layout. In short, a 35 footer that gives you the ultimate in sailing flexibility- cruising, racing, day-sailing or weekending with family and friends.
Contact Tim Kohl at East Coast Yacht Sales at email- tim@ecys.com or ph# 401-682-2010

J/80 for sale at McMichaels YachtsJ/80 For Sale

The J/80 offers the best combination of stability, speed, ease of handling, advanced construction &
trailer-ability for a 26.5 footer. She can compete in one design with the standard jib or in PHRF with the optional genoa tracks and overlapping 135%. Perhaps most importantly, she is a fun and exciting daysailer.
This 1994 model comes well-equipped with a single-axle Triad trailer that has 2 diamond-plate storage
boxes, 5 HP outboard, recent sails & halyards, Velocitek Prostart, TackTick micro compass, new
un-installed interior cushion covers and padded keel & rudder covers. She even has a Simrad Tiller Auto
Pilot.   She’s a nice boat ready-to-go for upcoming East Coast J/80 regattas, asking $23,900.
Contact Tom Bobbin at McMichael Yacht Brokerage 203-554-8309 or email- tomb@mcmyacht.com

J/109 cruiser racer sailboat- cabin interiorJ/109 J-TRIPPER For Sale

Even before you step upon J-TRIPPER, the high level of care and maintenance is obviously apparent. Not only is the boat clean but the halyards are held off the deck, the jib lead lines are held off the deck, the A-sym pole is covered and the Dodger is on and ready for cruising. Stepping on the boat you’ll notice the like new non-skid – you’ll be hard pressed to find a nick or scratch on this cherry deck job.
From the foot stops to the steps down below the varnish has been consistently maintained, the counters have been kept clean and one could eat out of the bilge, if you were so inclined.
This boat is truly turnkey and priced very competitively considering the condition of the boat. Do not miss the chance to look at J-TRIPPER, this is an amazing J/109 for the money.  She’s offered at $164,500 USD.
Contact Ben Braden at Sail Northwest- ben@sailnorthwest.com or ph# 206-286-1004

J/122 Patriot for saleJ/122 PATRIOT For Sale

Own a piece of yachting history! This famous J/122 is for sale, one of the most accomplished J/122s on the market.  Recently, she famously won the 2013 Stamford-Vineyard Race Overall with an all youth team.  Competitive both offshore as well as around-the-buoys, this gorgeous navy blue sloop has it all to continue winning long into the future. She has an extensive inventory of sails and marine electronics/ navigation gear to accommodate both types of racing— offshore and one-design.  Immaculately maintained by her owners and sailed primarily on Long Island Sound summers, she’s ready to take the next step in her future.  Located in Mamaroneck, NY.

Contact Rusty Stewart, the McMichaels Yacht Brokerage and central listing- ph# 914-419-7967 or email- rustys@mcmyacht.com

J/46 For Sale

This is one of the nicest J/46’s on the market today. She has been maintained to the highest level. All gear on board needed to race & cruise – she has done three Bermuda Races & is ready for 2014!  She was built in 2002.  Her extremely extensive inventory of goodies includes SSB, all B&G Nav instruments everywhere, 30 amp charger/inverter, colossal amounts of UK Sails (main, spinnakers, jibs, genoas, etc), Lewmar winches include 2 electric primaries for short-handed sailing, Espar diesel heater with 3-cabin ducting, plus other stuff like 2008 Winslow 12-man raft in turtle pack, bimini top, dodger, Fairclough canvas winter cover w/metal frame, full cockpit cushions, teak cockpit table, hot & cold cockpit shower, Lewmar electric windlass, 35# Plow anchor, & outboard engine bracket. She can be seen at McMichaels in Mamaroneck, NY.  Asking $350,000.

Contact Rusty Stewart, the McMichaels Yacht Brokerage and central listing- ph# 914-419-7967 or email- rustys@mcmyacht.com

J/160 offshore passage-maker and cruising sailboatJ/160  TEN For Sale

TEN was built as a custom order J/160 built in 1997 and is the “deep keel (8’ 8”) model.  No expense was spared during the build with every major option selected and many custom options added. “Ten” is located in the Pacific northwest and is now available for immediate sale- asking CAN$ 549,900.
Upgraded Quantum sails in 2006 and professionally maintained with constant upgrades to ships equipment.
Features include: 3 cabin 2 head layout; Full custom teak interior; Hall Carbon mast; Westerbeke 7.6Kw Gen set; Custom Wave stopper Hard top and Bimini; Ockam instruments; Espar Hydronic Furnace; Yanmar 4JH2-DTBE HP 88; and 3 Blade Max Prop.
Contact- Jane Harper/ 604-733-1339/ jkharper@telus.net or J/Dealer Ian Fraser @ 604-377-4773/ ian@fraseryachtsales.com

J/44 interior cabinJ/44 IMAGINE For Sale

The J-44 is the perfect Sailboat— live-aboard comfort, easily managed by two, with offshore durability and speed to win the Fastnet and Sydney-Hobart.  Bob Perry has said the J-44 is the perfect combination of speed, comfort and ease of handling.
“Imagine” is a high performance cruiser of this famous J/44 design series. She has the favored “B” layout with two heads and a walk in-shower for maximum cruising comfort.  Many improvements include roller furling boom w/ full batten mainsail, quantum 100 roller furling jib, new lines, electric mainsheet winch to hoist the mainsail and retrieve the stern anchor and more.
“Imagine” is a performance cruiser ready for her new owners to step aboard.  Imagine where you can go with a performance cruiser of this pedigree. Offered at $184,900
Contact: Ben or Bob @ Sailboats Northwest – 206.286.1004 – http://www.sailnorthwest.com

J/95 shoal-draft performance cruiserJ/95 ANTHEM For Sale

Anthem is the first of the five J/95’s now sailing on the shoal waters of the beautiful Barnegat Bay.  She was fitted with the complete line of options offered for the J/95 and has been very well cared for. While Anthem was initially purchased for racing, the owner sailed her shorthanded with his wife and friends, broadening her use as a racing and cruising vessel.  With an adjustable sailing draft between 3’ and 5.5’, the J/95 has the capability of broadening a day’s sailing range by 5-10 miles. That includes venturing safely outside of inlets into open water… even staying dry and comfortable when a 20-knot sea breeze kicks in.
The current owner recently sailed her from Bay Head, NJ to Newport, RI with his son and then with his wife on the trip home. All thoroughly enjoyed their travel including a few nights aboard.  Anthem shows in excellent shape and is priced at $162,500.
Please contact Burt Geiges at Custom Offshore for details- cell# 215-275-6159 or email- burtus@gmail.com

J/160 “Lake Shark” For Sale

This well maintained vessel has been in Lake Erie’s fresh water since the spring of 2006. Designed for short-handed performance cruising, offshore live-aboard comfort, built by TPI, certified to ABS + A1 Classification.  The very desirable 7’ draft allows for entering ports most 53 footers would not allow.
The J160 is designed to maximize comfort and handling for long distance offshore cruising and perform at speeds exceeding most 60 foot racers. J160 incorporates a retractable carbon fiber J/Sprit system. With asymmetrical spinnaker and snuffer, this system replaces the cumbersome and crew intensive conventional spinnaker while defining short-handed downwind performance. Hall Spar’s carbon fiber cruising spar, and performance hardware from Harken, Schaefer & Lewmar.
2012 Kevlar #1 Genoa, 2012 Kevlar #3 Genoa, 2009 #3 Genoa – Dacron Cruising, 2009 Mainsail – Kevlar, North “Quick-Cover” for mainsail, 2008 Code “0” Asymmetrical Spinnaker.
All lines led to cockpit. 2 Lewmar 1012 single stoppers port & starboard for running backstay control. 8 Lewmar winches include 2 #66AEST 3-speed electric primaries, 2 #54AST 2-speed secondaries, 2 #50AST 2-speed mainsheet, 2 #48AST 2-speed halyard.  3 single lock-in chrome winch handles.
Please contact Tracy Buszak at RCR Yachts- ph- 814-455-6800, cell: 716-6800-4554, email: tracy@rcryachts.com.    See the YouTube Video- http://youtu.be/NUwh1-Ma6Yg

About J/Boats
Started in 1977, J/Boats continues to lead the world in designing fun-to-sail, easy-to-handle, performance sailboats that can be enjoyed by a broad spectrum of sailors.  The International J/24 has become the most popular recreational offshore keelboat in the world with over 5,400 J/24s cruising the waves. The J/70 one-design speedster has become the world’s fastest growing sportsboat ever!

Today, there are 13,500+ J/Boats, ranging from the International J/22 to the J/65 and ranging in style from one-designs to racers, cruisers to daysailers and, of course, the ubiquitous J sprit boats- J/Boats’ innovation in 1992 for easy-to-use asymmetric spinnakers and retractable carbon bowsprits (J/70, J/80, J/88, J/92, J/95, J/105, J/109, J/110, J/111, J/120, J/122, J/130, J/133, J/125, J/145, J/160).

J/Boats has the best track record in sailing for innovation and designs as evidenced by:  20 Boat-of-the-Year Awards; the SAIL Award for Industry Leadership; two American Sailboat Hall of Fame Designs; and five ISAF International One-Design keelboat classes (J/22, J/24, J/70, J/80 and J/111).

Counting crew, every year there are over 100,000 friends to meet sailing J’s, populating the most beautiful sailing harbors and sailing the waters of 35+ countries around the world.  Sailing is all about friends.  Come join us and expand your social network everywhere!   For more information on J/Boats.

Read Kimball Livingston’s SAIL update on the J/Boats story- A Band of Brothers