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Festival of Sails 2020 - LEADERBOARD

J/24 & J/22 East Coast Championships in Annapolis

by J/Boats 4 Nov 2018 05:21 PST 27-28 October 2018
2018 J/24 East Coast Championships © Will Keyworth

It was another fantastic fall weekend of racing in Annapolis for the J/24 & J/22 East Coast Championship. Teams travelled from across the northeast & mid-Atlantic to join in on the fun this weekend and for the top competition in both classes. 26 J/24 teams raced Friday – Sunday, joined by 13 J/22 teams Saturday & Sunday.

On Land Festivities

We'll get to the action on the water in a moment – the highlight on land was the Saturday evening regatta & costume party! Over 170 J sailors enjoyed dinner under the tent and shortly afterward, the DJ started pumping the tunes and the costumes came out. The crowd even demanded the annual flip-up challenge between the 24s and 22s before dessert! We were too busy dancing under the tent to even hold the costume contest, but we've decided that the "Party Patrol" placed 3rd, George Washington placed 2nd, and the entire cast from Gilligan's Island, aka the Blo'viate team, was the 1st place winner!

Prior to the party North Sails Zeke Horowitz and Will Welles led the Saturday dock talk, which focused on big air techniques both upwind & down. The breeze was in the high teens, so the focus was on de-powering upwind & weight placement down wind.

Then, champion oyster shucker George Hastings shucked 400 local Delaware Bay oysters during Oyster Happy Hour before the Low Country Boil, prepared by Bread & Butter Kitchen.

Friday evening, Quantum Sails' Travis Odenbach led a great dock talk and was joined by Mike Marshall, Ian Coleman and Quinn Schwenker. Afterward, the crowed enjoyed local Maryland and cream of crab soups, sandwiches and snacks, before heading out to the Boatyard Bar & Grill's Full Moon Party!

On the water recap by Quantum Sails' Travis Odenbach

Friday's weather was what you might expect for fall sailing – misty, chilly and a little bit of everything in terms of breeze – very light with winds out of the east at 4 to 6 knots and lots of current. In the easterly breeze with an ebb tide, the place to be on the race course was the left side! You get up current first and into less current than the right side of the race course. Unfortunately, for Friday there was only one race, but with the rest of the weekend looking like breeze-on, the race committee stayed patient and sent us in to warm up for Saturday.

Saturday brought rain and big winds early in the morning, but at 12:00 the rain lessened and the wind moderated. With the wind direction mostly out of the NW and the breeze at 12 to 18 knots, the J/24's & J/22's were eager to get started. The racing was very tricky with a starting line pin-favored and the current pushing out, it was hard to make the line. Starting at the pin-third was a must and getting on to port quickly was a good call. This is sometimes the hardest move in sailing. To be on the line at the start with a tide against you, and to be able to tack and clear the fleet, is tough. Although it was not critical to tack right away, teams were certainly looking to tack early. Something I have learned when this scenario presents itself is to try to be reaching on or just below the line with about 20 seconds to go and then when the gun goes off you can turn up quickly and look to tack. Sounds easy, right? The breeze held on all day and we were able to get three in on this amazing day of racing.

On the way out to the race course Sunday for a 1000 warning we had about 10 knots – then the skies cleared, the sun came out and the breeze picked up once again 12 to 18 knots out of the WNW. These were tricky conditions as the breeze was coming from the land and the Severn River. There were plenty of shifts to catch and with the tide starting to come in the fleets became mixed up as everyone tried to regain their bearings. The tide was different than the prior two days and the wind was shifting 20 degrees. The J/24 fleet had a bit of alphabet soup on the menu for the day – I believe one race had 14 or so Z flags handed out and that meant the scores were shuffling!

All in all, it was a beautiful, sunny, fall day in Annapolis and I would not have rather been sailing anywhere else! By regattas end, we had sailed 7 races and only one in breeze under 10 knots. Annapolis delivers in the fall once again!

Thank you again to all who helped put on this event and to all that travelled & participated! Everyone had a part in making this event the perfect regatta and I hope to see everyone next year!

J/24 Results

Now, on to the best part...the awards! Veteran J/24 class sailor Mark Hillman and his team captured 5th place with 53 points. Regatta Co-Chair Jim Bonham and his team on SISU captured the top Corinthian Award with a strong 4th place finish and 52 points.

North Sails' Mike Marshall & the Bogus team finished 3rd. Tony Parker and his team on Bangor Packet finished 2nd with 41 points.

Finally, congratulations to our 2018 J/24 East Coast Champions — Travis Odenbach, Ian Colman, Geoff Ewenson, Collin Kirby and Monica Morgan on Honeybadger!

J/22 Results

Local J/22 sailor Ian Jones placed third with a total of 18 points. In second place, Jacob Doyle finished with a total of 12 points. And, our 2018 J/22 East Coast Champions are Jeff Todd and his crew on Hot Toddy, Chris Ryan and Chip Carr, finishing with a total of 12 points!

New this year – Drone Footage from Sam Greenfield

Drone Videographer Sam Greenfield, fresh off the 2018 Volvo Ocean Race, joined us in Annapolis for the J/24 & J/22 East Coast Championship! Sam hosted a presentation on Thursday night to discuss the use of drone video in sailing, and other topics including equipment, safety, and more. Sam filmed racing, in addition to SSA's Carlos Linares, and we'll post highlight reels from Friday and Sunday available for viewing soon.

Thank You Sponsors, Volunteers & RC!

A big thank you to our Platinum Sponsor, The Rigging Company for their financial support, in-kind donations and staff support throughout the regatta. Year after year, thank you to Tony Parker and Parker Tide for their Gold Sponsorship. And our Bronze sponsors included Boatyard Bar & Grill, and FitzGerald Design Build. Thank you to North Sails, Quantum Sails, APS for their generous in-kind contributions once again to the regatta. And last, but obviously not least a big thank-you to the race committee, headed-up by PRO Juliet Thompson and to the many volunteers that helped make this regatta a great one.

For more about J/24 East Coast Championship see j24eastcoastchampionship.com

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