J/111 Wins Marstrand Big Boat Race
The Marstrand Big Boat Race started out as a local spring regatta, but has turned into Scandinavia’s biggest annual short course event. This year saw almost 70 yachts from Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Germany, including the J/111s Blur and Dacapo. Saturday morning was grey, but a 18-20 knot westerly wind caused big waves and challenging conditions. The team on Blur has focused on offshore sailing after their Fastnet Campaign in 2015, and is planning to do the Middle Sea Race in October. But they have continuously worked to improve rig trim, sail design and other speed factors. And the result of this work was evident as they posted a fourth and a first before race management took the decision to cancel the last race of the day due to increasing wind. So Blur grabbed the daily first champagne. Skipper Peter Gustafsson explained, "We had great speed upwind with our bulletproof J3.5 and managed to hang with the bigger boats. Ideally, we want to go for speed, but we managed to keep our lane. Downwind, we stayed upright with the 'whomper', our 155 sqm A2 and managed to move ahead quite a bit. Especially on the last run where we observed a late shift and went for the A3." Sunday morning's forecast had 10-14 knots of wind moving from SW to S during the day. Also, the current plays an important part when racing in Marstrand, so with at least five boats in the mix, racing would be tight. Most top boats opted for the right corner, close to land, to get relief from the current. Blur showed superior speed, this time with a recut J2 and led at all the marks to win with almost a minute on corrected time. At this point, even the team was surprised. After a bad start in race 4, they managed to catch the top boats and post a third place, just ahead of the Norwegian J/111 Dacapo. Heading into the last race, Blur lead FinnFlyer 36 Zlatan with only one point. Another good start made it possible to both work the shifts and keep a light cover on Zlatan. After a long run to the finish inside Marstrand harbor, Blur posted another first with just a three-second margin. Peter Gustavsson commented on their performance, "Wow. This is unbelievable! After six years and over 12,000nm, we know the boat well and are pretty confident with our targets. But, with more rake and harder jib in-haulers, we're almost a degree tighter than the North tuning guide. As a result, we sail higher without sacrificing speed. This is a team effort, both getting the boat blazing fast, but also when it comes to tactics and strategy, where we typically involve more people than many other crews. Comes in handy when we run watches at sea, but apparently, it's useful on tight courses as well." For more Marstrand Big Boat Race information, visit http://www.blur.se/2019/06/05/marstrand-big-boat-race-2019/.
Jeff Davis’ Shamrock is Top J/111 at Chicago NOOD
The Helly Hansen Chicago NOOD wrapped up Sunday, June 9 in a shroud of fog, again. Morning rain and fog saw the remaining scheduled races cancelled on the third day of the regatta. Spirits were high, however, as competitors gathered at Chicago Yacht Club for the evening’s awards party. An out-of-town crew from Cleveland, Ohio, won the eight-boat J/111 fleet, with skipper Jeff Davis leading his team on Shamrock. "It’s a lot of fun when you can sail in challenging conditions like we had this weekend," says Davis. "The fog and the waves and the varying wind we had made the racing really tricky, so we’re happy to leave town with the championship."
- Shamrock, Jeffrey Davis , USA – 2 -1 -1 -1 ; 5
- Warlock, Tom Dickson , USA – 4 -5 -2 -2 ; 13
- Kashmir, Michael/Steve Mayer/Henderson , USA – 1 -2 -3 -9 ; 15
For complete results, visit https://yachtscoring.com/event_results_cumulative.cfm?eID=6037.
J/111s Tie at COLORS Regatta
The COLORS Regatta was hosted by Columbia Yacht Club in Chicago, IL from June 1-2. Seven J/111s completed four races, and two boats tied on points at 6 for the lead positions: Richard Witzel on Rowdy and Michael Mayer and Steve Henderson on Kashmir. Rowdy's line of 2,2,1,1 mirrored Kashmir's 1,1,2,2. Rounding out the top three was John Kalanik's Pura Vida with 14 points. For complete results, visit https://yachtscoring.com/event_results_cumulative.cfm?eID=6244.
J/111 Snags PHRF Win at Southern Bay Race Week
Southern Bay Race Week was hosted by Hampton Yacht Club, the Cruising Club of Virginia and Old Point Comfort Yacht Club in Hampton, VA from May 31-June 2. In PHRF SUPER A (Up to 49), the J/111 Sitella, led by Ian Hill, topped the six-boat group. For complete results, visit https://yachtscoring.com/event_results_cumulative.cfm?eID=6123.
J/111s Enjoy Tight Class Racing at RORC Vice Admirals Cup
The Royal Ocean Racing Club’s annual Vice Admiral’s Cup Regatta was sailed on the Solent. The fleet was treated to a wide variety of weather conditions—cloudy to sunny, light to breezy, shifty to streaky, and, of course, current.
Day One: The opening day served up light airs, with big shifts and wind reversals that challenged competitors and race officials alike. A quiet morning quickly gave way to an afternoon that started with fast-paced action on both course areas. The first start was for the J/111s in a very shifty southwesterly of 10-12 knots that created plenty of tactical challenges in a tight race with a short 0.8 mile windward leg. The fleet strongly favored the committee boat end of the line, and the first start was abandoned with 40 seconds to go. In the restart, the fleet was more spaced out, with Cornel Riklin's J/111 JITTERBUG closest to the pin end of the line. Both Simon Bamford's KESTREL and Joerg Sigg's LALLEKONIG appeared well placed mid-line, but the former was OCS. It was an intense race for the J/111s, with two laps completed in only 35 minutes, and the first five boats finishing just 69 seconds apart. Joerg Sigg's Swiss LALLEKONIG took victory, 20 seconds ahead of Tony Mack's McFLY, with Cornel Riklin's JITTERBUG third.
Day Two: The second day of racing delivered short, sharp races that tested sailors over a wide range of conditions. It was a day of intensely close racing in a very shifty north-northwesterly breeze of mostly 10-15 knots, but with a number of lighter spells and a brief squall that saw gusts above 20 knots. Tony Mack’s McFLY asserted near dominance in the J/111 fleet, taking two decisive wins and two second places. The winner of Friday’s race, Joerg Sigg’s LALLEKONIG, took a 30 percent points penalty for an infringement in race 3, and lying one point behind McFLY in the overall standings. Competition further down the fleet was equally strong, with Chris Jones’ JOURNEYMAKER II on 14 points, and both Jan Van Berne’s RED HERRING and Cornel Riklin’s JITTERBUG on 15 points going into the final day.
Day 3: Summer sun returned for Sunday’s racing, with bright sun and rising temperatures, but initially without any wind. The committee boats left the dock when the beginnings of a southerly of 2-3 knots sprang up in the central Solent at 1030 hrs. Half an hour later, it had swung into the southeast and increased to 8 knots, and the AP flags signaling the postponement came down at 1100. At the start of the day, five boats were still in contention for a podium place in the J/111 fleet. A win in both of Sunday's races sealed Tony Mack's class victory on McFLY, 6.5 points ahead of Sigg's LALLEKONIG. The three-way fight for third was resolved in favor of Chris Jones' JOURNEYMAKER II, thanks to his two second places.
For more RORC Vice Admiral’s Cup information, visit http://www.rorc.org/racing/racing-portal.
Fast & Furious Edlu Distance Race
Larchmont Yacht Club in New York kicked off it summer offshore sailing season with their Edlu Race, first sailed in 1956. The event has two courses for different types of sailors. The Spinnaker course is 32.0nm from the Larchmont Breakwater to Gong 11B off Eaton's Neck and back. The Non-Spinnaker course is approximately 20.0nm. The eight-boat PHRF Doublehanded Division was won by Abhijeet Lee’s J/111 VARUNA. For more Larchmont YC Edlu Distance Race information, visit https://www.larchmontyc.org/.
Skeleton Key Takes J/111 Fleet at Annapolis NOOD
The Helly Hansen Annapolis NOOD regatta took place May 3-5. In the eight-boat J/111 fleet, Peter Wagner’s Skeleton Key won four of seven races to earn the Class win with 14 points. Rob Ruhlman’s Spaceman Spiff followed in second place with 20 points, and Jim Connelly’s Slush Fund in third with 27 points. For complete event details, visit https://yachtscoring.com/emenu.cfm?eID=6036.
Warsash Spring Series Weekend IV Report
The fourth weekend is in the books for the Warsash Sailing Club’s HELLY HANSEN Warsash Spring Series. The fleet was blessed, again, with good enough conditions to get in one more race for the IRC handicap fleets. The forecast for the day was not exciting, E to SE, 4-7 knots. This eventually turned out to ENE to S and the back to ESE, with 3-5 knots for most of the day and reaching nearly 8 knots for the last half of the last race of the day. In IRC 1 Class, it was the first outing for Chris Jones & Louise Makin’s J/111 JOURNEYMAKER II, showing they had not lost their edge by winning their class in convincing fashion. For more HELLY HANSEN Warsash Spring Series information, visit https://warsashspringseries.org.uk/2019/index.htm.
North European Fleet J/111s Race at Taittinger and Cowes Week
Early commitments make J/111s the largest single boat type at both the Taittinger Regatta and in IRC1 at Cowes Week 2019. The Taittinger regatta, 26-27 July 2019, run by the Royal Solent Yacht Club at Yarmouth, Isle of Wight, is a relatively new event for the J/111s, but popularity is growing steadily. The weekend begins with the Taittinger champagne party at the RSYC on the Friday evening, offers two ‘Solent’ round-the-cans races on Saturday, the Towers party with live music and fireworks on the Saturday evening and another race and prize-giving on the Sunday. Entry includes a berth at Yarmouth marina. At Cowes Week 2019, the J/111 results will be extracted from IRC1 for a class result.
North European Fleet J/111 2019 Series Sponsored by Sweeney
In a new initiative to build on the success of the J/111 2018 Worlds in Breskens, Netherlands, the North European J/111 Fleet has organised a Series competition for 2019. J/111 boats and crews will be competing for the new Paul Heys trophy, awarded to the overall points winner over the six scheduled regattas, which include:
Vice Admirals Cup - 10, 11, 12 May
Royal Southern Regatta - 18, 19 May
Royal Southern Regatta - 15, 16 June
Royal Southern Regatta - 13, 14 July
J Cup - 18, 19, 20 July
Royal Southern Regatta - 14, 15 September
HELLY HANSEN Warsash Spring Series Starts Up
The Warsash Sailing Club on the Hamble River in the United Kingdom started its HELLY HANSEN Warsash Spring Series. The WSC PRO paid tribute to Paul Heys of J/U.K. In the Black fleet, leading the IRC 2 Class is Simon Perry’s J/111 JIRAFFE with a 1-2 for 3 points total. For more HELLY HANSEN Warsash Spring Series information, visit https://warsashspringseries.org.uk/2019/index.htm.