Monday, October 5, 2015

Zennstrom’s RAN Wins J/70s @ AVEVA Regatta

J/70 RAN sailing UK Nationals (Hamble, England)- Over the course of the September 18th to 20th weekend, the Royal Southern YC hosted the AVEVA September Regatta for a host of classes, both IRC handicap as well as J/70 one-designs.  The fleets were split into the Black Group handicap racing teams and the White Group one-design class fleets.  Winning their first regatta in the J/70 class was Niklas Zennstrom’s J/70 RAN, sailing with his wife and friends.  Then, in the IRC 3 Class, the J/92 J’RONIMO sailed by David & Libby Greenhalgh sailed home with the silverware.

After the first day of racing for the Black Group start, Greenhalgh's J/92 had straight bullets and their friends Annie Kelly & Andy Howe on the J/97 BLACKJACK II had straight seconds!

Greenhalgh's J’RONIMO is crewed by friends from Hamble and nearly all girls. “My dear wife Judith is a volunteer on the Committee Boat, so she could keep a good eye on me,” laughed David. “The crew work was really good today and we started pretty well and didn't make too many mistakes. The crew complain that I only provision the boat with pork pies but it is the only food you can eat with one hand and not make a mess. Great racing today, thoroughly enjoyable, and we will be looking forward to much of the same tomorrow."

J/70s sailing UK Nationals- startOver in the White Group, it was Zennstrom racing RAN that led the J/70 Class having scored a 3-1-1 for the day.

“We could have got a second in the first race but we are very happy with our performance today,” commented Zennstrom, who was enjoying a celebratory drink with his wife Catherine and the racing crew in the Royal Southern Yacht Club. “The J/70 is very easy to race, we just launch the boat, pull up the sails and go racing. The class is very competitive and no one boat is dominating so it is a lot of fun. With a TP52 or MiniMaxi 72, things are much more complicated, racing the J/70 only requires four people and there is no time spent on working out sail development and modifications to the boat, so it really is a lot of fun, but at the same time very challenging!”

In the J/70 Class, Simon Cavey’s JUST4PLAY won the first race and finished the day in second place behind RAN. Ian Wilson's GILL RACE TEAM is in third place, but only a single point ahead of two yachts; Patrick Liardet's COSMIC and Team Juicy racing ESF Energy.

After racing hundreds of competitors and guests enjoyed the Royal Southern Pirate Party with a Caribbean BBQ and a welcome dark’n’stormy refreshment. For those with enough energy left after a great day's racing, Ed and Al provided live music into the early evening.

For the second day of sailing, the weather provided a spectacular conclusion to the AVEVA September Regatta!  It was simply perfect late season Solent racing.

And if the on-the-water action delivered, so did the onshore atmosphere in the club, described as ‘vibrant’ by a number of racing sailors!

For the Black Group Line racing on Sunday, it was Greenhalgh’s J/92 J’RONIMO that ended up tied on points but winning on countback from Annie Kelly and Andy Howe’s J/97 Black Jack II in IRC 3 division!

In IRC 1 Division, the J/122 JUNO sailed by Chris Daniel placed 5th, even after not sailing the first day.  In IRC 2 Class, the J/109 JIRAFFE sailed by Simon Perry took the bronze also after not sailing the first day!

J/70 sailing upwind- UK Nationals on solentFinally, over on the White Group start line, it was someone well versed in high-performance racing, but successfully choosing the J/70 class for the AVEVA September Regatta, that ended up winning overall-, was Niklas Zennstrom aboard RAN.

“What’s great with these small J/70s is that they are so easy to sail,” said Zennstrom. “You just launch the boat, hoist the sails and off you go, so compared to the TP52s and the Maxis it’s a very different thing – quite nice actually to just go out sailing from the Royal Southern.  It is our third regatta with the boat and I think we have now figured out how to sail them, so we had a pretty good weekend with a 3-1-1-1-2,” he added. “Downwind we have improved quite a lot, and also our boat handling and just our speed, just putting it all together really. The summer series here at the Southern has been really good, a great atmosphere with good race management, it’s been a great success!”

RAN finished ahead of Patrick Liardet’s COSMIC, who won the last race, and Simon Carvey’s merry crew of bandits aboard JUST4PLAY that finished third.  For more AVEVA September Regatta sailing information