Thursday, May 16, 2019

Cold, Windy MAIOR Cup Regatta

J/70s off Kiel, Germany
(Kiel, Germany)- Hosted by Kieler YC in Kiel-Schilksee, Germany, the MAIOR CUP Regatta took place from May 3rd to 5th in similar cold, wet, windy sailing conditions as did the Bundesliga down in southern Germany. The one-design fleets of J/70s and J/80s were participating in their first major regatta of the season and they were certainly put to the test, straining both boats and humans to the brink of exhaustion.

Day One- Cold, Wet & Wild
On the first day, it was cold in the Kiel Fjord and it blew hard- 20 to 25 kts all day with big seas. As the offshore crews struggled on the long haul outside course, the J/70 and J/80 classes fought close to land.

"Turning right in front of the harbor entrance was quite unusual," said J/80 skipper Martin Menzner. “As a result, we were so far inside, we had smoother water than the guys outside.”

After three races, Menzner’s PIKE crew had a 1-2-1 to be one point ahead of Arne Wilcken’s DIVA. Menzner joked, “Arne is the reason why I've exchanged half of my crew for this year! Thank goodness for my new crew members- Lars Keilwitz and Hannes Renzsch- they worked well with me and our other crew- Nils Berltermann!”

In the J/70 class, Charlotte Braun-Dullaeus’ crew on JINTO (Tobias Strenge, Florian Herrmann, Terje Klockemann) sailed fast and furious, winning the first race and ending the day with a 3-2 to lead the regatta by a point.  Just behind her was Gerd Knospe’s SANNA R in second and Hauke Thilow’s GER 1079 in third.
J/80s sailing off Kiel, Germany
Day Two- More Demanding Conditions
Although the wind had slowed slightly compared to the start on Friday, the wind was shiftier and puffier, more extreme in fact. Again, the J/70s and J/80s had their course tucked in close to land in flatter water, but the puffs were more extreme!

“Of course, it was important to be in the right place at the right time," said Nils Beltermann, a crewman on Menzner’s PIKE. "We have done well today and are leading, but only by three points!  Our friend DIVA is fast and does not give up!”

In the J/70 class, Charlotte Braun-Dullaeus drove JINTO fast and on to the top of the leaderboard with a strong series of races for the day- a 1-4-2-1-2. She displaced the Berlin crew on SANNA R, dropping them into second.  The big move of the day was Tania Tammling’s all-women crew from Hamburg that sailed ALBIS into third place by the end of the day with a blazing hot 4-2-3-2! Her crew consisted of Kristin Mertner, Carlotta Meewes, Ragna Thonnessen, and Franziska Wilckens.
J/70 women's sailing team- Kiel, Germany
Day 3- Blessed Sun Shines
Sunday provided the perfect atmosphere for the final day of the regatta; sun, moderate breeze, clear skies, and much warmer temperatures. Smiles all around the docks as people hopped aboard their boats for just two more races to complete the regatta.

"It was very tricky on Sunday," said J/80 class winning skipper Martin Menzner. “We are thankful that we had three very good days of sailing, we sailed well, no dramas, and finished well. My new team was good all-around!“  Taking second in the J/80s was Arne Wilcken’s DIVA and third was Hauke Kruss’ TAK FOR TUREN.

There was a lot of drama in the J/70 class.  Having scored four 1sts in the first eight races, it was anyone’s guess that Knospe’s SANNA R crew could repeat those performances on the final day. In the first race, SANNA R did just that, winning it while JINTO took third, closing to within one point of Charlotte’s team.  However, in the last race, Charlotte sailed fast, stayed out of trouble, and scored a deuce, while SANNA R finished right behind them. As a result, Charlotte and her crew on JINTO jumped for joy, breathing a sigh of relief as they won the regatta with 17 pts net. Knospe’s SANNA R took second with 19 pts net and Tammling’s all-women team on ALBIS took the bronze (also winning the Helga Cup Special Award for best women’s team).

"That was very exciting and close. We actually had a plan to decide what we would do in the penultimate race, but that did not work," said JINTO’s skipper Charlotte Braun-Dullaeus. "Our advantage was that we sailed very consistently, even on Sunday, which was probably the most demanding sailing day. It was really hard to judge some things, especially crossing situations upwind. We’re happy to win and thank my amazing crew!”  Watch a nice sailing highlights video of the MAIOR CUP Regatta here  For more MAIOR CUP Regatta sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.