by Rick Roberts
At the inaugural Long Beach Junior Match Race Invitational, an ISAF Grade 5 match race, Jacob Rosenberg of Alamitos Bay Yacht Club claimed victory on Saturday in this youth regatta for 10 to 18 year olds. Sponsored by Kaenon Polarized the event was held in Long Beach’s Alamitos Bay and was hosted by Long Beach Yacht Club. Racing against seven other Southern California teams on LBYC’s fleet of CFJs (Club Flying Junior), Rosenberg and his crew Madison Nadelman made a clean sweep with seven wins and no losses on the day. Their tactics? 'Our plan was to mess with the other boat before the start,' Rosenberg said, 'get off the line in front and use boat speed to extend our lead.' It sounds easy, but he admits it was a little harder than just staying ahead. 'It was challenging, with a lot of close races that could have gone the other way.'
(l-r) LBYC Junior Commodore Jack Berg presents Madison Nadelman and Jacob Rosenberg (ABYC) with their first-place trophies for winning the inaugural Long Beach Junior Match Race Invitational
Finishing in second place was Cal Yacht Club’s Jessica McJones and her crew Gavin McJones. To date, most of her sailing experience has been on Lasers and CFJs. 'It was really fun,' McJones said, 'and I’m really looking forward to doing this again next year. This was my second match race. Last week was my first. 'I made a couple of mistakes today about not being aggressive enough. I’ll have to work on that.' Balboa Yacht Club’s Porter Killian and his crew Max Brennen took third place honors on the day. When asked if he has ever had any match race experience, Killian said, 'I was taught by my brother, Christophe. He’s 16 and is ranked around 400 in the ISAF rankings.' When asked if they would return for next year’s regatta, Killian’s crewman Brennen replied, 'Definitely, but I wish we could use spinnakers.' The inspiration for the regatta came from LBYC’s Junior Commodore Jack Berg who competed today with his crew Alan Peoples. 'My dad [Eric Berg] and I were looking at the America’s Cup AC45s on TV last December and I said, ‘it would be really cool to have a match race for juniors.’ 'The next day my dad was at the club’s board of directors meeting and mentioned my idea. Then it just kept growing. 'We met with Bob Curley [Race Management chair] and he put it on the race calendar. Then during this year’s Congressional Cup [ISAF Grade 1 Match Race] I was invited to the Meet the Skippers Dinner and I met with Pete Ives [veteran ISAF umpire, Principal Race Officer and co-founder of on-the-water umpiring]. 'Then we met with Randy Smith [US Sailing Judge] and Kirk Brown [ISAF umpire/judge] and it all came together. Do you know that we had three America’s Cup umpires on the water today for our regatta?' Already thinking ahead to next year, Berg said, 'I’d like to have a two-day regatta with a single round robin on the first day, and quarter, semis and finals on the second day. 'I think this went incredibly smooth. Everything was perfect.'
Second place finisher Jessica McJones and crew Gavin McJones (on left) fight it out with regatta winner Jacob Rosenberg and crew Madison Nadelman.
Final Results 1. Jacob Rosenberg/Madison Nadelman, ABYC, 7 wins - 0 losses 2. Jessica McJones/Gavin McJones, CYC, 5 - 2 3. Porter Killian/Max Brennen, BYC, 4 - 3 4. Kyle Blair/Alex Van Dyke, LBYC, 3 - 4 (tiebreaker) 5. Luke Van Lant, LBYC, 3 - 4 6. Ethan Michaelis/Ryan Schack, ABYC, 2 - 5 (tiebreaker) 7. Joseph Hou/Patrick Shannon, NHYC, 2 - 5 8. Jack Berg/Alan Peoples, LBYC, 2 - 5 LBYC website
Porter Killian and Max Brennen (on left) finished in third place in the inaugural Long Beach Junior Match Race Invitational.