J/111 Cup – Festival of Sails, Geelong

Yachtspot is pleased to support Royal Geelong Yacht Club in this 175th year of the Festival of Sails event.   J/Boats have been synonymous with racing over the generations starting with the J/24 40 years ago, the J/35 and on to the next generation of sprit yachts encompassing the J/70, J/88, J/111 and new J/121 in the Sports range and the J/97e, J/112e and J/122e in the performance cruiser ‘e’ range.

Thanks to Royal Geelong Yacht Club for running one-design class racing for the J/111, we look forward to a weekend of close, evenly matched racing that only one-design racing can offer.

Fresh from competing in the Australian Yachting Championships at Sandringham Yacht Club last weekend, the J/111 fleet headed to Geelong for the Festival of Sails Regatta.  The J/111’s will be racing one-design for the J/111 Cup, sponsored by Yachtspot. The J/111 Nationals (held as part of AYC last weekend) was won by Rod Warren’s ‘Joust’ who will be keen to continue his winning streak at Festival of Sails.

A special shout out to the crew from J/111 ‘Horopito’ who sailed around from Adelaide for the events. Five J/111’s are now based at Sandringham Yacht Club being Joust, Jake, Playlist, Veloce and Scarlet Runner 11.

Day 1 – Passage Race from Melbourne to Geelong was sailed on Friday (Australia Day), with Rob Date’s Scarlet Runner 11 taking line honours.  Rob commented after the race ‘We had a plan and stuck to it – sail straight and keep some in the bank. Before the race we guessed the SW change seabreeze would hit at 1.37pm so we planned to be in the best position for the change.  Rob joked that he misjudged the change by 6 seconds, when the wind shifted at 1.37.06 however they had positioned themselves perfectly and took the lead. Rob added “the J/111 is a really nice boat and we are having a lot of fun with it”.

In second place on the day was ‘Playlist’.  John from Playlist commented “We are really proud of our efforts after less than 1 year of owning our J/111. The team has come together really well.  Today, the Code zero was our hero!”  Like most of the fleet they were stuck in a wind hole and changed between kite and code zero about 10 times. As the change hit they went from 0 knots to 8 knots of boat speed instantly, and they were off.

Day 2 – Festival of Sails, Geelong

Day 2 of Festival of Sails started with light breezes this morning.  The J/111 fleet held three back-to-back races today with extremely close racing throughout the day.

Todays victor was Rod Warren’s ‘Joust’ winning the first two of three races today.  In the final race, Veloce took the lead with Scarlet Runner second.

Rod commented: “The wind was 0-8knot ESE shifting 30 degrees and flat water, so it was all about winning the starts, picking the right shifts and good crew work. All the J/111’s are so close you could throw a tennis ball to each other especially downwind.

Fantastic one-design sailing with less than 1 metre separating the boats at times.

Current placings have Joust on 8 points, Veloce and Scarlet Runner equal 9 points and Playlist and Horopito close by.

Day 3 – J/111 Cup

With a heat wave and temps close to 40 degrees it was better to be on the water with winds shifting to the North East about 15knots.  The final results jostled amongst the top 3 boats and came down to the last mark rounding.

First race was won by Veloce, with the rest of the fleet finishing within seconds of each other. The second race was won by Scarlet Runner, followed by Veloce and Playlist.

In the third and final race, up until the last mark rounding the J/111 Cup trophy would have gone to either Scarlet Runner or Joust, however Veloce managed to squeeze in front of both at the last turn and keep in front for the run to the finish. Veloce therefore took the series with Scarlet Runner second and Joust third. In 4th and 5th place were Playlist and Horopito.

Separately, the J/111’s also competed in the Super 11 division with a mix of 11m racing yachts under AMS.  The J/111’s took the first 3 places in the mixed fleet racing.

Congratulations to all of the crews, we are so pleased you have enjoyed a great long weekend of close racing.


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