|North Sails/Boyd Boats Irish Training Weekend
Nine 109s turned out for this year's session at the National Yacht Club, Dun Laoghaire. Regular visitors, Jukebox (Pwhelli Sailing Club) and Aquelina (Arklow Sailing Club) came from Wales and Arklow respectively, while new boat Storm travelled across the bay from Howth. Two new entrants to the fleet, Jalapeno and Jura (reportedly to be renamed Jekyll and Hyde) joined local boats Windmill, Joker II, Indecision and Powder Monkey. Maurice "Prof" O'Connell of North Sails pulled the whole programme together, imparting his extensive knowledge (combined with wit) to an attentive audience. Ably assisted by Nigel Young and James Knight of North Sails, he set the tone on Friday evening with a presentation on the fundamentals of 109 sailing.
While Saturday morning was quite gloomy, the fleet got in a couple of practice races before taking part in the regular Dublin Bay SC race which was marked by sunshine and good breeze. The fine conditions provided challenging reaches and runs testing crew work to the full.
Sunday morning was calm at first, providing a great opportunity for the North guys to demonstrate live trim control effects on Storm whilst alongside. By 1300, the breeze kicked in enough for a further four races where James and Nigel were able to move around the fleet coaching as they went, while "Prof" videoed the starts and mark roundings providing for a certain amount of mirth in the de-briefing that followed.
As usual the National YC proved to be a most hospitable venue and will also be the harbour for the 109s during Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta.
Once again, a valuable start to the new season, which is packed with events - Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Offshore race, ICRA Championships, Sovereigns Cup and Volvo Dun Laoghaire regatta. The Irish/Irish Sea fleet now numbers some 21 boats, so some great racing and craic ahead of us.
Thanks Prof, Nigel and James and all at NYC. -Paddy Boyd
|Raymarine Warsash Spring Series FINAL
|More photos by Eddie Mays. More info
The J/109 Class has been racing one-design at the final Raymarine Warsash Spring Series. The Series has been plagued by the wind gods forgetting to turn up and after six Sundays of light wind which has been testing of the navigation and tactical skills and resulted in one race lost, the final race took place on Sunday 26 April.
During the Series there has been a different winner of each race until Jouster (Adam & Helen Wright) won the last race to make it their second win of the Series. Without ZELDA (Michael Ewart-Smith/Ben Richards), JOHNNY BLUE II (Jeff Dakin/Bruce Jubb/Mike Flood) and SHIVA (Matthew Boyle) the podium places were up for grabs.
The final race saw JAHMALI (Mike & Sarah Wallis) hold the upper hand over J-DREAM (David & Kirsty Apthorp) and BETH OF FIVE STAR (Guy Knight) with J-DREAM needing to finish in front of JAHMALI to claim victory. The last race at moments in time saw all of the podium contenders in the driver's seat, with J-DREAM managing to gain the advantage over BETH and JAHMALI on the final run and hold them off for the final beat.
The J/109 fleet retired to the bar after racing to discuss what has been a testing and frustrating series for many, before discussing their plans for the rest of 2009.
The J/109 UK Class will next be in Yarmouth, Isle of Wight over the weekend 16/17 May for the Western Solent Championships.
1st J-DREAM (David & Kirsty Apthorp) 8 points
2nd JAHMALI (Mike & Sarah Wallis) 10 points
3rd BETH OF FIVE STAR (Guy Knight) 13 points
4th JUST WILLIAM (Will Leonard) 24 points
5th AUDAJIOUS (David & Barbara Jobson) 26 points
|Annapolis NOOD: Summer in April
Photo © 2009 Jeremiah Tamagna-Darr / www.timwilkes.com
With temperatures that ranged from 55-90 degrees F and wind that ranged from 0-14 knots, the Annapolis NOOD certainly provided enough variety over the three day event. Bill Sweetser's RUSH and his team (Tom Babel, Bobby Brooks, Danielle Vileno, Bill Romano, Winston Kinard, and Brian Tyrrell) took the six race series with no finish worse than third. They also take the lead for the first ever East Coast Circuit Trophy. (The winner will be the top combined scorer at this event and the Larchmont NOOD Regatta, September 12-13.)
The event was the inaugural midatlantic championship. After the dust settled from organizing the event, creating a new trophy, and then winning it, Bill shared his thoughts:
What was the best thing about the event?
The camaraderie and excitement and fun. There wasn't one guy who didn't seem really motivated to participate more. This was the first big time organized event in the midatlantic area and our first midatlantic championship. I'm hoping we can really build on this over the years, and keep the event coming back as part of the Annapolis NOOD.
What was your biggest challenge to winning?
Going into Sunday, we were several points ahead of MISCHIEF. We said the only way we're going to get in trouble is if they beat us by a couple of boats. So what did we do? We were over early, and at the very end of the numbers they called. Oh boy, I thought, this could cost us the regatta. But one of the nice things about being OCS is that you can see where boats are doing well. We used that knowledge and went to where we thought the best place would be. We were almost first to weather mark, caught MISCHIEF on run, and led the rest of the race.
How was the fleet?
It was great. We were worried we couldn't get seven for a start, and we got nine. We had every boat owner in the Chesapeake fleet, plus a boat from Pennsylvania and one from North Carolina. We had lots of fun together. The purpose was to try to build the midatlantic fleet and this was a major catalyst to do that. The event met all my expectations.