J/70s continue to expand their presence on the Great Lakes, from Lake Ontario westward across Lake Erie, Lake Huron and Lake Michigan as well as in the many lakes across the states and provinces in the region.
J/70 Great Lakes action
J/70 fleets have developed in Toronto, ONT; Erie/Western, PA; Buffalo, NY; Youngstown, NY; Rochester, NY; Canandaigua/ Finger Lakes, NY; Lake George, NY; Rocky River, OH; Cleveland, OH; and Chicago, IL. Events for J/70s have been proliferating and highlights include:
The 20th Anniversary of the Cleveland Leukemia Cup Regatta at the Cleveland Yachting Club on July 18-21. If you have never been to CYC, it is one of the premier yacht clubs in the midwest if not the country. Wonderful fresh water sailing on Lake Erie and parties that rival any event. Most importantly, all the proceeds are donated to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
The 40th Annual Youngstown Level Regatta will be held July 27-28, in Youngstown, NY. This is the largest event on the Lake Ontario South Shore and is known for quality racing and really fun shoreside social activities. There are currently 15 J70s registered and we should be able to hit 20 or more. YYC has two hoists and there is also a ramp near the club, launching and hauling is at no charge.
Inaugural J/70 Great Lakes Championship at Buffalo YC, August 10-11. As of this morning there are 17 J/70 entries with more sure to follow. BYC has a good dry-sail area with two hoists and is convenient to downtown Buffalo. This event is a natural for any J/70 coming to Western NY for the Youngstown Level Regatta two weeks prior. Leave your boat here and do two events for one trip.
Jud Smith J/70 Clinic at Buffalo Yacht Club Friday August 9, prior to GLC: Jud Smith is a well-known sailmaker at Doyle Sails Marblehead, World Champion and an active J/70 owner who will be there to pass on what he has learned so far by campaigning his own J/70.
Don't pass this up! To encourage participation in both regattas, we are offering to tow your J/70 from Youngstown to Buffalo following the event and store it there until the GLC (a 30 mile trip). No charge for moving the boat or storing it for two weeks. All you have to do is take the rig down and prep the boat for towing after the event. If you need to leave the boat in Buffalo for a time after the GLC that is OK too. Simply send an email prior so they may plan accordingly. They want to make sure you enjoy your stay in Western NY so you will come back again!
SAIL22: We highly recommend Ed and Becky for parts and service for your J/70. They own and race a J/70 and know what they are talking about. They offer a wide variety of aftermarket goodies for your J/70 and they are super easy to deal with. They are also at many class events.
Finally, here's a quick guide for J/70 owners of current major American sailmakers that have done their homework and have updated designs based on the experience they have had racing and testing so far.
Tim Healy of North Sails has a string of J/70 wins already. He has put together the following tuning guide (it's highly recommended reading) on the North Sails One-Design website.
Quantum's Marty Kullman J/70 Tuning has taken over the lead in the J/70 class for Quantum Sails. Here is a link to an article Marty wrote after the Cedar Point regatta last month.
Dave Ullman, Erik Shampain and Greg Koski have been developing the Ullman Sails and recent results (like winning Cleveland Race Week) show they're in the game.
Jud Smith and Mark Ploch of Doyle Sailmakers have been making significant advances over the last few months. Mark's recent second in the New York YC Annual Regatta and Jud's second in Charleston Race Week is an indicator of how far they've come in the past year.
Kris Werner of Haarstick Sailmakers is a new J/70 owner in upstate NY. Many sailors in the area have used Haarstick Sails in the past and have a relationship with them. Haarstick is now developing sails for the J/70 and you will soon see Kris out on the circuit with his new boat.