Please select your home edition
Upffront 2020 Foredeck Club SW LEADERBOARD

Phyllis Kleinman Swiftsure Regatta at St. Francis Yacht Club

by J/Boats 26 Aug 08:32 PDT August 18-20, 2023
Phyllis Kleinman Swiftsure Regatta © St. Francis Yacht Club

The St. Francis Yacht Club hosted their warm-up regatta last weekend for the upcoming Rolex Big Boat Series- the Phyllis Kleinman Swiftsure Regatta.

The format is modified so the StFYC race committee sets longer courses encompassing the entire city front and including a mini Bay Tour each day.

The fleet enjoyed champagne sailing conditions. Most teams didn't wear foul-weather gear all weekend! Saturday was gorgeous and warm (for San Francisco Bay) and on Sunday most of the top boats had their AP jibs for the first two races and changed to the heavy air jib for the third race.

J/105 Class

For the twenty-two boat J/105 class, it was a tight competition, enhanced by several new owners in the fleet who were highly experienced racers, and who previously owned J/105s, then took a hiatus to raise a family.

To make a long enough starting line for the J/105s, the RC had difficulty deciding where to locate the start. Ultimately, they set up near Ft. Mason and tried to not be anchored in the shipping lane. As a result, the RC put the pin too close to shore, bringing the piers and rocks into play. Given the massive flood tide, they then canted the line to favor the committee boat but overbaked it at around 20 degrees, so everyone started at the Committee Boat!! After the first general recall, the RC PRO went to "U-flag" starts, but did not change the line. This went on through several general recalls and more U-flag starts until they finally got a race off. If you do enough U flag starts you ensnare a lot of people. The RC Team was shorthanded and did not have a pin boat to help make the calls.

As a result of the skewed start line near shore, and a massive flood tide with moderate westerly breezes, it was generally short-tacking the city front and a lot of close calls. Three boats ran aground (GODOT, MAVERICK, and ZUNI BEAR)!!

On both Saturday and Sunday afternoons, the fleet enjoyed great bay tour races that included planing from Harding Rock to the Blossom Bell buoy. Most of the fleet went above Alcatraz, and others passed a lot of boats by going below and then coming into the Blossom Bell Buoy on a hotter angle.

Winning the J/105s was Ryan Simmons's BLACKHAWK with a very consistent scoreline of 7-4-1-1-3-1 for 17 pts. Second place was determined by a tiebreaker at 26 pts each to round out the podium. On countback, the silver medal went to Doug Bailey's AKULA with a 2-8-3-2-5-6 tally versus Phil Laby's GODOT 2.0 with a scoreline of 5-3-4-4-6-4. The balance of the top five included two veteran J/105 teams, with Scott Sellers's BEAST OF BURDEN in 4th and Bruce Stone's ARBITRAGE in 5th place. Just 3 points separated 4th to 7th place-- all positions determined by the final beat in the last race!

J/88 Class

The J/88 teams saw a very strong performance by Brice Dunwoodie's RAVENETTE, posting all podium finishes of four 1sts and two 2nds to finish with a mere 8 pts to win the class by a landslide. Second was Christos Karamanolis's PELAGIA with twelve points and taking the third step on the podium was Tom Thayer's SPEEDWELL with 18 pts.

More information at

Related Articles

Martin and Lowry win 5O5 World Championship
Five days of close competition on San Francisco Bay Sixty teams from eight countries competed in the action-packed 10-race 2023 5O5 World Championship held September 26 to October 1 at St. Francis Yacht Club on San Francisco Bay. Posted on 4 Oct
5O5 Pre-Worlds and North Americans
San Francisco Bay locals win in fleet of 60 boats Racing concluded on Sunday, September 24, for the 2023 5O5 Pre-Worlds and North American Championships at St. Francis Yacht Club. Posted on 26 Sep
Glorious weekend at Rolex Big Boat Series
J/Teams excel across the board - One-design & ORC Handicap Divisions From a challenging ebb coupled with strong gusts in the low 20s on the first day to diminishing breezes each subsequent race day, the 59th edition of the West Coast's premier racing event challenged even the most seasoned competitors. Posted on 24 Sep
Rolex Big Boat Series at San Francisco overall
Competition was as fierce as ever for the 59th edition Variable sailing conditions hounded this year's 79-strong Rolex Big Boat Series fleet, but the competition was as fierce as ever for the 59th edition of the West Coast's premier racing event. Posted on 18 Sep
2023 Rolex Big Boat Series at San Francisco Day 3
It all comes down to tomorrow, with several tight contests still to unfold "Champagne sailing" is not the norm on San Francisco Bay. It is highly unusual to have a run of light weather in September, or to even have a run of days with the same weather. Posted on 17 Sep
2023 Rolex Big Boat Series at San Francisco Day 2
A showcase of sailing excellence Skippers kept their feet on the accelerator during Day 2 of Rolex Big Boat Series, driving another intense day of great racing on San Francisco Bay. Posted on 16 Sep
2023 Rolex Big Boat Series at San Francisco Day 1
Spectacular from start to finish The 2023 Rolex Big Boat Series kicked off today, and Day 1 was equally spectacular from start to finish. Posted on 15 Sep
59th Rolex Big Boat Series preview
An intense lineup of competitors ready at St. Francis YC The energy is palpable and anticipation high as the 79 teams registered to race gather at the docks of St. Francis Yacht Club for last-minute preparations before tomorrow's start of the 2023 Rolex Big Boat Series. Posted on 13 Sep
Ronstan Bridge to Bridge Race at St. Francis YC
Mike Martin describes this event as "the best race in the world, ever." Certainly, that description is up for argument, but who could complain about a downwind blast in 20+ knots of breeze between the iconic Golden Gate and San Francisco Bay Bridges? Posted on 31 Aug
Final call for entries in Rolex Big Boat Series
Competitors and spectators will converge on San Francisco Bay from Sept 13th Rolex Big Boat Series, the premier racing event on San Francisco Bay since 1964, is once again set to deliver a legendary experience for sailors. Posted on 23 Aug
J Composites 2022 - J45 v4 FOOTERUpffront 2020 Foredeck Club SW FOOTERDoyle Sails 2020 - Cruising Confidence 728x90 BOTTOM