Thursday, February 19, 2015

Dazzling Quantum J/70 Winter Series Finale

J/70s sailing Tampa Bay- Quantum Winter Series 
(Tampa, Florida)- The weather forecast certainly looked promising, with 10-15 kts Northeast on Friday, veering East 6-10 kts Saturday, and veering further Southeast on Sunday at 5-9 kts.  However, as the J/70 sailors have all learned by now, such rosy forecasts, no matter how good, are no guarantees on Tampa Bay.

This past weekend marked the third and final “act” of the Quantum J/70 Winter Series, hosted by Davis Island YC.  The fleet of 47 boats was ready to chase Marty Kullman’s NEW WAVE, the leader after the two previous Quantum J/70 Winter Series events in December and January. 

The event turned into a flat water, light air regatta of three races.  Saturday’s conditions started in 10-12 knots from the Northeast in Race 1, but the race was sailed in 5-6 knots with righty puffs and 4-knot lulls.  Race 2 wind strength was variable with 4 to 8 knots of breeze.  On Sunday, during race 3, the fleet sailed in 4-6 knots from the Southeast in fluky conditions, but no particular bias to one side of the course.  The AP flag was flown after Sunday morning’s race, ultimately resulting in fleet motoring home after a two-hour wait for the wind to fill.

Learning a few lessons from his first major regatta of the year at the Key West J/70 Midwinters, Allan Terhune and company aboard the mighty DAZZLER blinded the fleet with two bullets and a 6th to win with 8 pts total.  Also benefitting from flashes of brilliance and practice at Key West was second place finisher Cole Allsopp and crew on MOXIE, sailing the most consistent scoreline with a 4-3-3 for 10 pts.  Perhaps in the same category of “practice made good in Key West”, Tim Molony’s crew on JOUST had some good races in the Midwinters, but lacked consistency.  In Tampa, he found the conditions to his liking and managed a 9-4-5 for 18 pts to round out the podium in third place.

The balance of the top five included local hotshot Rob Britts on HOT MESS, not only winning Corinthians Overall for the Quantum Winter Series, but also winning Corinthians in the Q-3 regatta.  Taking 2nd in Corinthians in Q-3 was Henry Brauer on SCAMP and his able-bodied crew from Marblehead, MA (which included Tufts Jumbo classmate Stewart Neff).  Third Corinthian was David Koski’s SOUL.

Despite a 7th place finish in Q-3, Marty Kullman’s NEW WAVE secured the overall win for the 2014-2015 Quantum J/70 Winter Series.

The next three J/70 events on the winter circuit are: (1) St Pete NOODS, (2) Miami Sailing Week in March, and (3) Charleston Race Week in April.   For more Quantum J/70 Winter Series sailing information