WINDCZAR Wins First J/111 North Americans
(Chicago, IL)- The last day of the International J/111 class inaugural North American Championships dawned with the prospect that just about any team in the top six boats could win the regatta. With a promising breeze flowing in from the east at dawn onto the spectacular Chicago shoreline and slowly building for the day (at least that was the forecast) the final day of racing could be a real battleground. Could the Lucky Dubsters pull it off to win and maintain their lead? Or, could the wind wizards on WINDCZAR pull it out of their hats? And, if they could sail magnificently in their last day, could the MENTAL crew pull the rabbit out of the hat and take it all?
With racing scheduled to start at 1030 hrs, the Chicago YC PRO and crew did a magnificent job to get the ball rolling and after two general recalls the fleet took off into an ESE breeze at 105 degrees blowing 5-7 kts. With yet another "classic southeast sea-breeze" building the big question would be which way the "locals" would go and how would the "foreigners" figure it all out? With the breeze fluctuating from 90 to 125 degrees, it was anyone's guess what would happen. As it turns out, just about any strategy worked so long as you stayed on the lifted tack. For the top five boats, it was going to pose a difficult challenge.
Sailing "lights out" was Richard Lehmann's crew on WINDCZAR taking the lead in the regatta with a first place in race nine while Len Siegal's LUCKY DUBIE had to score their worst race in the series, a tenth. Paul Stahlberg's crew on MENTAL sailed a great race, working their way through the fleet to register a fourth and put themselves in a position to have a shot at the overall title. Read more here in J/111 blog...
J/111s Loved Sailing Key West
(Key West, FL)- While there were lots of little boats blazing around like busy bees on the waters off Key West, the majestic beauty of the "big boats" was quite a sight to behold. This year, the big J's all sailed on the Division 3 course, the easternmost course for Quantum Key West and perhaps one of the best sailing areas due to less current and flatter waters with minimal boat traffic to worry about.
The J/111s had a trio of boats that sailed a highly competitive series with one Key West 111 veteran returning (WICKED 2.0) and two class newcomers ready to roll (LAKE EFFECT and FIREBALL). For starters, the weather conditions were well-suited to the J/111s, with moderate to strong breezes most of the week. The regatta did break down into the "tale of three winds". Light air Monday right out of the North as a result of a weakening front. Then moderate to heavy breezes of 12-22 kts from the NNE, getting stronger on Tuesday, at its peak on Wednesday, then moderating into Thursday. Finally, the fleet was treated to moderating easterly, very shifty on Friday. For the 111s, no question Wednesday's racing was most fun as in the puffs they could jump onto long planes taking hundreds of yards of gains at a time on the fleet in the 3-4 foot easterly seas.
The J/111 debut of Bob Hesse and gang on LAKE EFFECT was particulary noteworthy. A native Youngstown/ Rochester sailor, Hesse and his crew are no strangers to the waters of Key West, having sailed competitively in the past in the pro-based Melges 32 class. It all came down to the last three races for the top five. In the end, Hesse's crew managed a 1-4-4 to grab second overall, sneaking past Jim Bishop's modded J/44 WHITE GOLD who posted a 3-5-6 to finish third. Sailing ever more consistently, faster and smarter, was Doug Curtiss on the famous J/111 WICKED 2.0, sailing to a 2-3-3 to tie WHITE GOLD, but losing the tie-breaker. Another notable performance towards the end of the regatta was the J/111 FIREBALL sailed by Team Fireball, a very recent class newcomer. With its blazing sunset orange paint job, it was a spectacular-looking boat and in the end, fired-off a 2-2 on the last day to show they had learned a thing or two from their comrades-in-arms! Good on ya, mates! Sailing photo credits- Onne Vanderwal and Tim Wilkes. For more Quantum Key West PHRF sailing information
J/111 European Circuit
(Les Sales d'Olonne, France)- The European J/111 owners have organized a fantastic sailing circuit for the summer of 2013. It starts in the spring in France, heads over to the United Kingdom mid-summer and ends in the finale in The Netherlands.
The schedule is nicely spaced out over the course of the spring/summer with the first event starting on Easter Holiday Weekened in April and completing in September. Here is the current schedule:
May 8-12- Semaine de Porquerolles, France- Ile de Porquerolles, France
June 6-9- J/111 Europeans- Le Havre, France
August 3-10- Cowes Week- Cowes, Isle of Wight, England
August 30-September 1st- Breskens Week- Breskens, The Netherlands
Please be sure to conatct Fred Bouvier (France), Paul Heys (UK) or Robin Verhoef (Netherlands), the J/111 European Class coordinators for more details about the European J/111 Circuit. Contacts for each are below:
- Fred Bouvier-
- Paul Heys-
- Robin Verhoef-
J/111 Northeastern Circuit
(Newport, RI)- The J/111 sailors in the Northeast/ Mid-Atlantic have a series of regattas in that spring that also act as "feeders" for summer time sailing in New England. On Long Island Sound, J/111 sailors are planning to congregate for the American YC Spring Series held over two weekends in Rye, New York. On the Chesapeake Bay, 111 sailors will be sailing as a one-design class in the Annapolis NOOD Regatta at Annapolis YC. The Annapolis-Newport Race acts as a natural feeder for boats from down south to head into the cooler climate of the New England sailing summer, with events based in Newport and Block Island; and for the more adventurous- the fabulous Chester Race Week in Nova Scotia. Sailing photo credit- Tim Wright- Photoaction.com. Here's the basic schedule:
April 27- American YC Spring Series- Rye, NY
May 3-5- Annapolis NOOD Regatta- Annapolis, MD
June 7- Annapolis-Newport Race- Annapolis, MD
June 14-16- New York YC Annual Regatta- Newport, RI
June 23-28- Block Island Race Week- Block Island, RI
August 2-4- Buzzards Bay Regatta- Padanaram, MA
August 9-11- Downeast Race Week- Northeast Harbor, ME
August 14-17- Ida Lewis Distance Race- Newport, RI
August 23-25- PHRF New Englands- Marblehead, MA