Wednesday, October 30, 2019

CLOUD 9 Triumphs at J/88 North Americans

J/88 Cloud 9 winners of NA's
(Larchmont, New York)- Fourteen J/88s competed in the 2019 North American Championship held at Larchmont Yacht Club in New York from October 16-20. Teams came from San Francisco, Canada, Youngstown, Rochester, Shelter Island and Long Island Sound.

The regatta started with a coastal storm on Thursday, with steady winds of 35 knots and gusts exceeding 45 knots, leading to an abandonment of all racing for the day. Four races were held on day two in a shifty NW wind of 20 knots, gusting to 28. Laura Weyler and the team of HIJINKS, winners of two previous North American Championships, took an early lead with 6 points, ahead of John Sommi’s CLOUD 9 (15 points) and Elizabeth Barry’s ESCAPE (17 points). Boat handling and consistency paid off, as even the smallest mistake could lead to a deep finish. This was evidenced by Bruce Stone and Nicole Breault’s team on OH JEE, who sailed three spectacular races with two bullets and one fourth but had to retire from race 3 because of a broach at the finish line, leading to a scrape with another boat.

Day three started with 6-8 knots out of the West, testing everyone’s light air skills. Four races were held in flat water and sunny skies. Keeping the boats moving and finding lanes of clear air paid off. At the end of the day, CLOUD 9 was leading the pack with 28 points, while second to fifth place were only points apart, with HIJINKS in second (32 points), Andrew Weiss’s team of ONE TOO MANY moving into third (38 points), OH JEE in fourth (39 points) and ESCAPE in fifth (40 points).
J/88 Corinthians winners- Stone/ Breault
Day four brought an Easterly breeze of 8-12 knots with lumpy seas. Three races were held, and Sommi’s CLOUD 9 finished the day winning the 2019 North American Championship with a total of 36 points (11 races, no throw outs). His crew included Victor Diaz de Leon, Edward Kiaer, John King, Hugh MacGillivray and Carlos Lorente Robles. Second went to Weyler’s HIJINKS (41 points), third to Stone’s OH JEE (47 points), fourth place Barry’s ESCAPE (51 points) and fifth to Weiss’ ONE TOO MANY (55 points). The Corinthian Trophy was awarded to Bruce Stone and Nicole Breault, who placed third in the Overall Division.

Said OH JEE boat owner Nicolas Delcourt, who handled the pit for the Corinthians winners Stone & Breault, “I loved the on-board choreography and team work, roll-tacking the boat in the light stuff and planing during the big breezes. OH JEE has never been so fast, and lending out my boat turned out to be a wonderful experience!”  For more J/88 North American Championship sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.