Please select your home edition
Edition
J Composites J/99

J/99 Balancing Act wins Australia's Brisbane to Gladstone Race

by Tony Craner, J/Boats 11 Apr 22:34 PDT
J/99 Balancing Act - Brisbane to Gladstone Race © jboats.com

Easter brings the Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race (B2G) every spring. The J/99 BALANCING ACT lined up for its second Easter race in as many years.

Here's the report from owner Tony Craner.

"The forecast was a 'normal' B2G, a 308.0nm downhill race with strong SE breezes. As can happen, someone forgot to tell the weather gods. The start was less than 4 knots. Being very shy wind angles, we started with the A3 spinnaker.

We were reasonably positioned at the start in the middle of the big boats. A little after the start the wind moved aft slightly and the crew called for a kite change. From A3 to A2 asym kite, completed in 40 seconds, terrific crew work!

The wind increased to 10 knots and it was a nice run to the first mark. Kite down, now a windward leg for 8 miles and watch for the strong tide.

The boat wasn't performing to expectations, we were losing ground. Changed helm, no improvement. Prop not fully folded, possible cause?? Eventually, we stop the boat, the main was pushed out to reverse the boat, and two large clumps of weed came clear from the rudder! OK, back in business!

For the rest of the run out of Moreton Bay the wind increased to 15 kts giving us a pleasant run.

Rounding the fairway mark, the SE breeze has a lot of East in it, too tight for the kite, Code 0 goes up. We are in company with 5 other boats, all larger 35-45 footers, we were the smallest boat in the fleet. The aim was to keep just above the rhumb line to give run-off room for any squalls. Good choice, just off Mooloolaba we saw a 35 knot squall. With full main and code 0 up, we ran off for a bit. When the wind eased below 30 kts, we reefed the main and hoisted the J4 to take us back to the rhumb line.

11pm at night we can now make Double Island Point, the first major 'bump' in the course as we head up the coastline. A3 back up, wind 15-20s, now we start leaving our accompanying boats.

From Double Island, it was 60 miles north to Indian Head, the next 'bump' (e.g. our next left turn). Through the night and morning we ran with the A3 in 20-25kts, but we were not making the headland and the boat was pressed. Change of watch helped and the smaller kite was proposed, its designed as a runner, but we have run it heavy winds with shy angles before. What a difference! The boat was more controllable, peak speed less, but average higher. We reeled in our friends on the Sydney 38 and blasted past them. We almost made the headland, but with the beach waves in sight, we dropped the kite, and 20 minutes of two sailing was required.

Half distance and kite up again, yes this is Easter! Cutting close to the reef at Sandy Cape always saves time, the tracker later showed we did that right. Around Breaksea Light and 28 miles to Lady Elliot, this run is square and, as we only run asymmetrical spinnakers, it's the leg you wish for a symmetrical setup.

Around the island and the 70 mile run across the 'paddock'. A lovely three-quarter kite run. The aim was to make the Gladstone fairway at least two hours before the tide change. Part-way along, a call for all hands on deck, 35 knots wind with the A3 and full main. With a kind sea state, the boat was stable and flying along, though we did later put a reef in for security!

We made the tide and finished at 11:22pm.

Results:

  • 1st IRC Division 2. Winning your division is always the first target.
  • 3rd overall ORCi
  • 1st overall AMS (Australian Measurement System)

Related Articles

J/Teams wins 3 divisions at Antigua Week
Five days of spectacular racing for the fleet The 55th edition of Antigua Sailing Week came to its conclusion after five days of spectacular racing. Teams from over 20 different nations enjoyed one of the Caribbean's most famous regattas. Posted on 5 May
Who better than a J owner to talk about a J?
Chatting with Denis R., currently the owner of a J/99 and soon to be of a J/112E We asked some questions to Denis R., currently the owner of a J/99 and soon to be of a J/112E. He shares his feelings about why he chose the J/99 and why he is staying in the family with his next boat, the J/112E. Posted on 17 Apr
Pittwater Sailing Yacht Show - 5-7 April 2024
See the fantastic range at the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club Ensign Yachts invite you to the 2024 Pittwater Sailing Yacht Show coming up on the 5th-7th of April at the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club in Pittwater, Sydney. Posted on 26 Mar
J/99 Nationals Success on Sydney Harbour
Held during the Sydney Harbour Regatta last weekend Close to 200 yachts and over 1000 sailors came from all over NSW and interstate to race in the 2024 Middle Harbour Yacht Club (MHYC) Nautilus Insurance Sydney Harbour Regatta. The racing spread the length of the Harbour over seven course areas. Posted on 7 Mar
Nautilus Marine Sydney Harbour Regatta overall
Competitors have had a fabulous weekend Today's weather was a turnaround from yesterday's wet blowy day at the 2024 Nautilus Marine Insurance Sydney Harbour Regatta, a glorious north-north/easterly wind on a sunny hot day made a difference to many results of yesterday - but not all. Posted on 3 Mar
MHYC celebrates International Women's Day
Halfway through the Nautilus Marine Insurance Sydney Harbour Regatta Halfway through the Nautilus Marine Insurance Sydney Harbour Regatta (NMISHR), Middle Harbour Yacht Club (MHYC) is celebrating International Women's Day early (it is on Friday 8 March), saluting women at the event Posted on 3 Mar
Nautilus Marine Sydney Harbour Regatta Day 1
Overcast day fails to dampen great racing Despite moody skies and rain showers, the opening day of MHYC's Nautilus Marine Insurance Sydney Harbour Regatta 2024 was nothing short of exciting as gusting winds to 30 knots hit Sydney Harbour forcing the best out of all yachties and their boats. Posted on 2 Mar
J/Teams Silver in ORC New South Wales Championship
Enjoying the challenging conditions, earning their fair share of silverware at the Pittwater Regatta Over the February 9th to 11th, 2024 weekend, the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club hosted a combination of the ORC New South Wales Championship and their annual Pittwater Regatta. Posted on 20 Feb
See the J/99, J/112E & J/45 at boot Düsseldorf
The world's largest sailboat show in the heart of Europe The massive, world-famous, Boot Dusseldorf Boat Show is taking place from January 20th to 28th in Dusseldorf, Germany at the sprawling Messe Conference & Exhibit Center. Posted on 21 Jan
Scallywag first of three retirees 2023 RSHYR
Scallywag, Arcadia and Rum Rebellion all retire Seng Huang Lee's 100ft SHK Scallywag from Hong Kong, has become the first casualty of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, breaking her bow sprit early this evening Sydney time. Posted on 26 Dec 2023
Cyclops Marine 2023 November - FOOTERSOUTHERN-SPARS-AGLAIA-SPARS_728X90 BottomRooster Women's Wetsuit Range