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Melges 2023 - Melges 15 LEADERBOARD

J/45 performance cruiser blitzes American YC Spring Regatta!

by J/Boats 15 May 11:50 PDT May 5-7, 2023
2023 American Yacht Club Spring Regatta © J/Boats

American Yacht Club hosted its 44th Annual Spring Regatta from May 5-7, kicking off the 2023 sailing season in the Northeast and Long Island Sound. The regatta committee moved to the increasingly popular three-day weekend format with a Friday Coastal Race on May 5, followed by the Spring Series on Saturday and Sunday, May 6-7.

For the Friday Coastal Race, conditions were overcast with light winds, while Saturday was sunny and beautiful but sailors dealt with a challenging and fluctuating wind environment. Sunday was another gorgeous day but competitors had to grind through light air Long Island Sound conditions, and some races were shortened as a result.

Coastal PHRF 1 Division

By winning their first race on Saturday, Len Sitar's beautiful navy-blue J/160 COUGAR was hoping to maintain that pace for the entire weekend. They followed that stellar start with a 2nd to be tied for the lead after day one. However, the crazy, shifty, streaky conditions on Sunday did them in, finishing 5th to take the silver in the "big boat" class.

Coastal PHRF 2 Division

Sailing in their home waters off American YC, the J/45 ACADIA, sailed by Regatta Co-Chair Erik Asgeirsson and Tom Stokes, brought home a first in the Friday Coastal Race PHRF Division 2 to go along with a first-place finish in the Spring Series PHRF 2 Division (notably, winning all four races!). As a result, the Asgeirsson/ Stokes duo was awarded the coveted "Rampant Trophy" for the best Spring Series PHRF boat overall! They led a strong contingent of very well-sailed J/Teams in their nine-boat division. Second went to Ron Richman's J/133 ANTIDOTE, followed by Kevin Kelley's J/122 SUMMER GRACE in fourth (losing a tie-breaker at 11 pts each), and John Pearson's J/111 RED SKY in sixth place.

Coastal PHRF 3 Division

Sailing a solid series in the largest offshore division of the regatta, the dozen-boat PHRF 3 group, was Kevin Marks' J/99 VELOCITY 2. Their 2-2-4 was good enough to win their class quite handily. They were followed by another J/99, Ray Warner's UPBEAT in 4th place, losing 3rd on a tie-breaker at 15 pts each. Fifth place went to Richard West's J/120 CHARLOTTE, and sixth went to another J/99- Todd Aven's THIN MAN.

Coastal PHRF 4 Division

Leading a clean sweep of the podium was Jim Townsend & JC Zucconi's J/92 EASY RED. The silver medal went to Jason Viseltear's J/80 UPSETTER, followed in third place by EJ Haskell & Jim Weil's J/92 VIXEN.

Coastal PHRF 5 Division

Well, this might as well have been called the "J/100" division. The three J/100s were all sailed by many of Long Island Sound's top dinghy and offshore teams. Fittingly, it was "college-style" dinghy racing, just main and jib only! Leading the charge was the trio on the J/100 BLUEFIN- Tom Boyle, Bob Clyatt, and Doug McKiege with two bullets. Second went to Drew Fung & Pat Jakobson's FREEDOM, and third place was Wiliam Hennes' LIBERTY.

Richard West's Charlotte (J/120) of Stamford YC, and Bluefin (J/100), also out of AYC, secured wins in Friday Coastal Race's PHRF DIvisons 3 and 5, respectively. Bluefin also won her division in the weekend Spring Series and Charlotte also won a trophy as the top finisher of the Friday Coastal Race.

Skipperdee (J/105), helmed by Dwight Greenhouse placed first in the PHRF Division 4 Friday Coastal Race and also finished the weekend with a strong second-place showing in the Spring Series J/105 division.

J/44 Class

June & Amanda Kendrick out of Lloyd Harbor YC, skippered PALANTIR 5 to first place in the J/44 division. This was a notable win for this women-owned boat, their first significant win against some of the best offshore big boat sailors on Long Island Sound! Second was a perennial class winner- Don & Dick Rave's RESOLUTE and third went to "the kids" sailing the Kings Point Merchant Marine Academy's COMET, skipper by Ken Luczynski.

J/105 Class

With twice the field size from 2022, David Willis' SOLUTION was once again the winner of the J/105 division, holding off SKIPPERDEE (Dwight Greenhouse) in second and 2021 winner LOULOU (Paul Beaudin) in third position. Many of the J/105s sailing were practicing and training for the upcoming J/105 North American Championship that is being sailed in October at American YC!

J/109 Class

GROWTH SPURT and skipper John Greifzu, Jr., took first in the J/109 division for the second straight year while also being awarded the 1888 Trophy for level racing; they counted only firsts in the five-race, one discard series! Second was Adrian Begley's MAD DOGS & ENGLISHMEN, and third went to Bob Schwartz's NORDLYS.

The eight-boat ORC Division saw Al Minella's new J/112E THE ROCC nearly pull off a silver-medal winning performance. However, a second race DSQ tossed a podium finish, having to settle for third place by a mere 1/2 point!

The post-race parties were held each day on the picturesque AYC flagpole lawn, where participants relaxed with drinks and a fabulous buffet to satisfy well-earned appetites while being entertained by musician Russ Davis and his band.

Click here for more American YC Spring Regatta sailing information.

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