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CHRISTOPHER WEIS WINS CALIFORNIA DREAMIN’ SERIES

Shane Young, Returning 2017 Champion, Wins Series Final Regatta

Long Beach, Calif., Nov. 3, 2019 —Returning California Dreamin’ Series winner Shane Young had trouble getting his motor running – his Catalina 37 being towed to the racecourse by the mark-set boat, but once out there, he and his LBYC crew won six out of seven matches to finish the two-day regatta with a 12 – 2 record.

Both losses were to yesterday’s leader Greg Dair; the final match coming down to a couple of feet lost while recovering from a penalty turn. The win earned Young, the 2017 Series Champion, 100 points toward his 2019 series total, but it was not enough to top Del Rey Yacht Club’s rising star, Christopher Weis.

The 23-year old won the San Diego leg of the series last month in a J22, earning him 100 points and putting him in a series tie with Nicole Breault of St. Francis Yacht Club.

But Weis and crew found their stride today, improving over yesterday’s 4 wins and 3 loss record and won six of the day’s seven matches. The only loss was to Young. Rounding after rounding, the team worked together like a well-oiled machine; winning the series and moving up this regatta’s leaderboard to take second-place.

“It was really a group effort,” said Weis. “All the matches were really competitive, and it was great to sail against such accomplishes sailors.” Matches against Breault, the series highest-ranked World Sailing competitor (61) was particularly close, and hard-fought, he said changing leads up to four times.

He and his crew Roberto Stevens, Dylan Finestone, Haydon Stapleton, Willie McBride and his brother Nicolas Weis, grew up sailing together. All of them are individually, really good sailors, he said. Last year Weis, Stevens, Finestone and junior match racing teammates Alex Burrow and Sidney Gathrid were awarded the Association of Santa Monica Bay Yacht Clubs Competitive Yachting Achievement award.

Next year, Weis, the regatta’s second-highest-rated competitor, at 83 with a bullet, will lead his crew at Ficker Cup here at LBYC. Chris Macy, LBYC’s Chairman of the 2020 Ficker Cup presented Weis with his invitation to the coveted event.

“We are really excited for Ficker and to be working our way up the ladder,” said Weis. To do well in April, the plan is to start training on some bigger, heavier boats. The crew normally sails in boats less then 25’feet. The Catalina 37’s, Weis said, are like having another 25-feet of boat length upfront and double the weight.

The annual California Dreamin’ Series is comprised of three regattas. St. Francis Yacht Club hosted the first regatta in March. This weekend’s racing, aboard Long Beach Sailing Foundation’s Catalina 37s, was a World Sailing, Grade 3 Match Racing event.

Competitors earned points for racing in each of the three events according to how they finished. In the overall standings, Breault finished in second place and Liz Hjorth of California Yacht Club finished third.

This weekend, 50 percent of the eight competing skippers were women.

As the winner of LBYC’s two-day regatta, Young was awarded the Barney Flam Perpetual Trophy, which he said was an honor, particularly because it is in celebration of one of crewmate’s Steve Flam’s father.

“Pulling the crew together, many of whom are college friends was like getting the band back together. So, winning here is particularly rewarding, said, Young. Next year, Young hopes that he and the crew can coordinate schedules to do more racing but to also represent the club well.

Accepting the award, Young thanked Randy Beers, the regatta’s principal race officer, the race committee, that included Commodore Camille Daniels, for doing such a commendable job orchestrating 14 races in light wind; adding that the umpires, who made a lot of good calls, as also appreciated for volunteering their time

Young’s crew were Flam, Mark Ryan, Erik Berkins, Nicolas Santos and Jack Jorgensen.

Greg Dair, representing Cabrillo Beach Yacht Club, finished the weekend’s regatta in third place.

“I was lucky enough to get the best group of sailors together for this event, and we hope to do more in the future,” Dair said at the trophy ceremony. Earlier in the day, he said the day’s goal was to do well and learn more as a team. In August, Dair, along with Kevin McCarthy and Zak Merton placing fourth for Alamitos Bay Yacht Club at the Viper 640 Worlds. Despite yesterday’s leaderboard-topping day, Dair said the Catalina 37s were a little harder to get used to than he figured, and the boat did not always end up where he expected.

The wind off Belmont Veteran’s Memorial Pier did not always show up where it was expected either. Racing started in light winds at five to seven knots of shifty breeze that brought in two rolling banks of fog and had the race committee resetting marks nearly a dozen times throughout the day.

OVERALL RESULTS

California Dreamin’ in Long Beach – Day 1

Dair & Young Debut in 1st and 2nd
The 3-regatta series concludes today November 3rd

Long Beach, Calif., Nov. 2, 2019 —California Dreamin’; indeed! Greg Dair, a former Alamitos Bay Yacht Club coach, competing in his first California Dreamin’ Series event, won six of the day’s seven matches to debut in first place. Long Beach Yacht Club’s Shane Young, the 2017 series champion returned in a big way, also making his 2019 series debut with a 6-1 record. But the loss to Dair dropped him to second via the tie-breaker.

Greg Dair and crew made their California Dreamin’ Series debut today in first place.
Photos by Jeff Demain at www.demainphotography.com

The LBYC event is the last of three regattas that comprise the California Dreamin’ Series. The first event was hosted by St. Francis Yacht Club in March. San Diego Yacht Club hosted the second regatta in October. Both of those events were sailed in J22’s. Today’s racing, aboard Long Beach Sailing Foundation’s Catalina 37s, is a World Sailing, Grade 3 event.

Nicole Breault, of StFYC and Christopher Weis, of Del Rey Yacht Club, went into today’s races tied for first place in the Series, both with 100 points. Breault, the series highest-ranked World Sailing competitor (61) won the first event with an all-female crew, while Weis won the second regatta. Today was the first time the two have sailed against each other. Weis, the second highest-rated competitor, at 83rd, took the match.

Competitors earn points at each of the three events based on how they finish. Liz Hjorth, who started the day overall in third place and Marilyn Cassedy are the only two competitors who will have sailed in all three regattas. The overall series winner will be announced at the end of racing tomorrow, along with recognition for the winner of this weekend’s racing.

Breault, said she’s sailed the Catalina 37s annually since 2012, and that each time there is a reacquaintance period involved. But thanks to the practice time yesterday, she’s confident it will not take her core Bella Racing Team crew and three men – honorary Bellas – long to get back up to speed with the boat. “The boats are a handful,” she said, “But I’ve got a really good group here and they work well together. The goal is to get stronger and stronger each race.”

The highly ranked Alexis Gesualdo, (93) also made her series debut; and like Dair and Young, started at the bottom of the series leaderboard with zero points. Representing North Port Yacht Club of Long Island, New York, Gesualdo, and her crew flew in late last night. This morning, she met up with her secret weapon – Scotty Dickson – who will be sailing with her this weekend. Dickson famously led his LBYC crew to second place in this year’s Congressional Cup. This summer he has been coaching Gesualdo and has been a “massive source of information and growth,” she said.

Also on the water tomorrow is Dave Hood, LBYC’s celebrated Staff Commodore. Hood won this leg of the event last year and went on the finish second this year at Butler Cup and the third at Ficker Cup. Both those events are held here and raced in the storied Catalina 37’s. Tomorrow, Hood will be on the water not as a competitor, but as an umpire.

Head Umpire Randy Smith explained that top match racers make excellent umpires, and that umpiring makes competitors better match racers. “It really opens your eyes, provides a 180-degree angle on aspects of racing that you thought you knew,” Smith said.

Racing started late today thanks to a no-wind delay. Light, atypical conditions persisted throughout the day, with boats returning to the docks shortly before dark.

Tomorrow’s first race is scheduled to start at noon off the Belmont Veteran’s Memorial Pier.

Day 1 Results
1 Greg Dair
2 Shane Young
3 Bruce Stone
4 Christopher Weis
5 Nicole Breault
6 Liz Hjorth
7 Alexis Gesualdo
8 Marilyn Cassedy

Full Results

Cover Photo: California Dreamin’ – 7 competitors from all over the state – and 1 from New York – took to the water off Belmont Memorial Pier today to race the third of three regattas known as the California Dreamin’ series, a World Match Racing Grade 3 event.
Photo by Demain Photograph

SCSN Special Report: Julia Jaynes Interview

October 22, 2019 – Long Beach, CA via Seattle, WA

Long Beach native Julia Jaynes just recently competed in the 2019 LEMWOD (Linda Elias Memorial Women’s One Design Challenge) as part of the Hawaii Yacht Club Team led by skipper Annie Gardner. The event was held over the weekend of October 12-13, 2019 in Catalina 37s and Cal 20s at Long Beach Yacht Club. Julia recently graduated from CSULB as a President’s Scholar with numerous awards and accolades. She was a member of the CSULB Sailing Team and grew up learning to sail at Leeway and ABYC. At her young age she has already given back to the sport of sailing by working as an instructor at Leeway Sailing Center and participating as a member of the race committee in last year’s 29er Worlds in Long Beach as well as an umpire at the US Sailing Match Racing Qualifiers. She has also supplied content (articles and pictures) for SCSN over her college years. Julia recently moved to Seattle where she started a career at Microsoft. Your SCSN Editor asked Julia for an interview about her experience at this event and she accepted.

Julia steering in the 37 after a long day of racing

Hi Julia, thanks for taking the time to sit down and talk sailing! Hope all is well. How are things going for you starting a new career and moving to a new city? A lot of changes for you!

It’s been really exciting to move to a new city and start work with a really great company. Seattle is definitely a lot colder and wetter than Southern California, but I love it so far.

What got you interested in sailing? From what I know, I think you pursued it on your own initiative. Is that right?

I was at Alamitos Bay on a summer day and saw other kids sailing sabots. I went home and told my parents that it looked so cool, and I wanted to learn. My parents signed me up for lessons at the Leeway Sailing Center, and I was hooked. I am really grateful that Long Beach has such a great sailing community that I got to be a part of. I did summer racing programs at ABYC and high school sailing with Long Beach Poly which were really great in setting a strong sailing foundation.

It looks like the LEMWOD was another successful event where new friendships were made and old friendships cemented and strengthened. How special is that, that our sport of sailing really brings people together!

Yes, I totally agree with that. I was really fortunate to be sailing on the same boat with my friend and fellow CSULB Sailing Team alumna, Sunny Scarbrough. And we also got to make a lot of great connections with the women on our boat and on the other teams. While the team I was on, Hawaii Yacht Club, had our eyes set out on first, it was really awesome to see my former coach, Allie Blecher win the event. I’ve made a lot of great friendships through sailing and now have friends all over the world because of the sport.

What crew position did you have on the boat?

I did pit, which is my normal position on the 37s. The team I was on was really great as we got to try out different positions throughout our practices which was awesome getting a little taste of everything. I believe it helped us to get the boat more in sync through us understanding all the roles.

How was the team assembled?

Allie Tsai organized our team. It was mostly through word of mouth but also through showing interest in women’s sailing. I was really lucky that two of my good friends race at Wet Wednesdays on Allie’s boat. I told them I wanted to get more involved with keelboat racing and eventually sail in a LEMWOD so they helped to introduce me. Allie really wanted to bring together a boat to strive for the best and empower women in sailing to achieve more which resonates with me. She brought together women in sailing who are strong, quick learners, and want to better themselves and the overall team.

Packing the boat up with Denise Eldredge and Julie Mitchell

What are some of the things you learned from your experience at this event? 

I learned a lot throughout the event. The most awesome thing was realizing how great women sailors are at not only getting the job done but also creating community. I also really grew in my voice and confidence on boat. It can be intimidating when you are the youngest and probably have the least keelboat experience. I realized a strong dinghy background provides a great basis for racing and I shouldn’t be afraid to speak up. Another great thing was having so much support and coaching from a lot of great male sailors as well. It made me realize in general the men also want the women to have success out on the water. I really got to fine tune my timing in the pit for better sets and roundings. The weekend overall was really empowering and one of the most fun regattas I had sailed. It was really great to see so many women out racing on the water and got me even more excited for future regattas and possibly bringing together my own women’s team in the future.

The wealth of sailing talent at this event was really well spread across all ages – it must have been quite a valuable experience for you to sail with some of the best women sailors , especially your skipper Annie Gardner.

I am extremely fortunate to have gotten to race with Annie Gardner as well as our tactician Katie Pettibone. They have accomplished so much in their sailing careers and really helped pave the way for women sailors. It was really cool to hear how they were thinking about not only the races themselves but setting up a game plan for the overall regatta. They are both super nice, supportive women that really love the sport. They really help set the tone for our boat, that we were going to work hard and strive for the best but also realize we are doing this for the love of the sport. They really helped to keep the boat on task but also positive and fun.

Any tips and advice you have for young women who want to learn to sail and compete in this sport?

I think sailing, especially as a woman, is a lot about dedication and courage. If you want to learn to sail, there are a lot of great opportunities at local sailing center and yacht clubs. I think dinghy racing is a great place to start. It can be intimidating as sailing is still a very male dominated sport. However, if you stay dedicated and work hard, you will be rewarded with opportunities. You also have to be courageous and not be afraid to participate, learn, and get a few bumps and bruises. I also think a big part about growing and getting opportunities in sailing is by not being afraid to ask. Ask the questions about what someone is doing to get their boat going fast; ask what you can do to help; ask if that boat you’ve always wanted to sail on is having practice days that you can crew at. I also think especially as women sailors we have to advocate a little bit more. Let others know that you can and want to do a certain roles on the boat; that you want to learn and are willing to work hard.

What things in sailing are on your bucket list to do as time goes on?

I haven’t done any offshore racing yet and would really like to get into that. I would eventually want to sail a TransPac.

Is there anything you would like to add?

I’m really grateful to be a part of a sport that is something I can do for the rest of my life. Sailing has taught me so many skills, not only how to make boats go fast but also life skills that I know have served me well. I feel really fortunate.

Thanks so much Julia for taking the time for this interview. I am sure it will inspire some young women to want to get in the sport of sailing and show what opportunities are out there for them.

Team Hawaii Yacht Club: (Standing L:R) Smith, Julie Mitchell, Katie Pettibone, Denise Eldredge, Alice Tsai, Jennifer Simonsis, Sabine Suessmann, Julia Jaynes; (Sitting) Randy Smith, Sunny Scarbrough, Annie Gardner, Holly Sweet Davis, Chuck Skewes

BULLETS FOR BLADE II & CATAPULT, IN CAMPBELL CUP AT LBYC

LONG BEACH, Calif., October 20, 2019 – – Light conditions persisted, as did the frontrunners in Farr 40 and WC 70 divisions, on Day Two of the Long Beach Yacht Club Campbell Cup Regatta.

Joel Ronning’s WC 70 Catapult added two more bullets to the scoreboard, finishing ahead of competitors with a solid 2-1-1-1-1 score to win the Campbell Cup perpetual trophy. Meanwhile, Mick and Marlene Shlens defended their championship title aboard Blade II over a half-dozen Farr 40 competitors, battling through lead changes at both windward marks and downwind gates.

Ten teams turned out to race in this year’s Campbell Cup, which was originally organized in 2006 by LBYC member Mike Campbell. Campbell successfully campaigned two 70-raters: Victoria, designed by Alan Andrews, and the Kernan 70 Peligroso; and created the fall regatta to spotlight big boat racing. When Campbell passed away two years later, the event was renamed as a tribute to his accomplishments in and support of sailing. His wife Victoria was on-hand Sunday at the prize-giving to carry on the Campbell legacy.

Traffic Alert! There was a pile-up of Farr 40s at the weather mark in the last race of the 2019 Campbell Cup. Photo by Laurie Morrison for LBYC

Conditions were mild for the two-day regatta with idyllic temperatures and southwesterly breeze topping just eight knots today.

“It would have been a good day for golf,” said Ronning, whose Minneapolis-based crew of Catapult have more than a just weekend in California to brag about, having won the regatta in a near sweep.

“But it was a great day of sailing,” Ronning conceded, and one of the reasons Long Beach is one of his favorite venues to sail. A veteran and second-place finisher in Transpac 2017, Ronning admitted he prefers sailing around the cans to blue-water racing and hopes to encourage other WC 70 owners to come out and play. He says he’ll return to the west coast next year for the Hot Rum Series and Yachting Cup, and will definitely be a boat to watch on the circuit in 2020.

While the WC 70s ran a 1.5nm course off Sunset Beach, the Farr 40s windward-leewards were 1.25nm, twice around.

Marlene Shlens, co-owner of Blade II, gave credit for their win to, “our outstanding crew, and a great tactician who was really on his game,” referring to Peter ‘Pedro’ Isler. “The boats were very competitive and positions changed a lot,” Ms. Shlens said. She noted a port/starboard situation at the start of Race Two which mandated a 360-degree penalty turn, during which her foot got tangled in a sheet. Despite the bumble, which saw Blade II dip to fourth around the windward mark, the team fought back to a second-place finish: giving them a solid seven-point lead over second-place Dark Star. Foil finished third.

The Crew of Blade II forges ahead and makes it work – finishing the regatta with three bullets, one second and one fourth-place finish to win the Farr 40 Class at the 14th annual Campbell Cup regatta. Photo by Laurie Morrison for LBYC

Although the Farr 40 fleet is roughly two decades old, that pedigree is what makes the boat so enjoyable to race, said Blade II’s Tony Rey. “The boats are all a little older – but in good shape – and have varying levels of newer or older equipment and sail inventory.” At any moment, he noted, “any of us could be the fastest boat out there,” with the optimal suite for the conditions. “If you’re in the right corner of the racecourse and set up well; right in the sweet spot of your jib or spinnaker, you can be the fastest boat, regardless of equipment. It’s more about sailing skill, and that’s what makes it a high -level racing.”

Long Beach Yacht Club was lauded by competitors for “running great events, with a fantastic Race Committee.” Keen hospitality was extolled too, as sailors were hosted to morning breakfast and post-race beer, and beefy hors d’oeuvre buffets post-race. Race Chair was Cheri Busch, with John Busch as PRO, assisted by Race Director Jess Gerry.

FINAL RESULTS

Catapult has no illusions about having a great race and winning Long Beach Yacht Club’s Campbell Cup Regatta. Credit: Laurie Morrison for LBYC

CATAPULT, BLADE II LEAD LBYC CAMPBELL CUP

Long Beach, Calif., October 13, 2019 — The Long Beach Yacht Club Campbell Cup Regatta got off to a late start today, but there was no holding back on the fun and spirited competition, in the 14th running of this treasured event.

Light conditions had PRO John Busch postpone racing until 1:00 PM when southwesterly breezes finally materialized. That was enough for the fleet of seven Farr 40s and three WC70s to pull off three races. But fickle breeze produced fickle results.

Mick and Marlene Shlens’ Blade II clung to first place at the end of today’s races, followed closely by Dark Star and Foil.

“We went out there expecting a light breeze to fill in and build and go right as it always does here: classic Long Beach conditions,” explained Tony Rey, racing on Blade II. “Everybody thinks they know what to do in Long Beach, that you have to go right. But today was that day that left was actually pretty good most of the time,” Rey continued. “There were plenty of times you could find some real nuggets out there on the left, which made it interesting. We got it pretty wrong in the first race, but got lucky and got it right and won the next two.”

Even so, Rey expects the podium spots will be ‘wide open’ tomorrow, in a fleet which is already primed from the recent Farr 40 Worlds.

Just three WC 70s graced the racecourse, where true to their names, Bolt bolted to the top of the leaderboard after Race One, but Catapult catapulted to the lead after Races Two and Three.

Catapult skipper Joel Ronning, sailing under the St. Francis Yacht Club burgee, said Catapult has “a good bloodline” – originally Pyewacket: a four-time winner of this event. A strong proponent of the 70s, Ronning credited tactician Peter Isler with “beating the drum” to rally the 70 Class to compete in the Campbell Cup. “This is a great boat and a great class,” Ronning said. “There are a lot of 70s still on the West Coast – maybe nine or 10 – and we want to get back out there and race. I want to get to know the other skippers and keep helping to promote and progress this class.”

For decades the ULDB 70s dominated and defined West Coast racing. After the heydays of the 1980s and 1990s, the sleds split off to ports afar and other performance fleets moved in.

To spotlight and support the fleet, LBYC member Mike Campbell launched the 70s Invitational in 2006, providing the big boats a fall race venue at LBYC. After Campbell’s untimely passing in 2008, the regatta was rededicated in his honor as the Campbell Cup.

“Our good friend Mike was the guiding force behind this event and we are dedicated to keeping it going strong and committed to his memory,” explained LBYC Commodore Camille Daniels. “It’s great to see the 70s out here; it brings back good memories. We’re really hopeful the 70s are successful in pulling the fleet back together; it would be fantastic to have more return, plus the 52s and any other big boats that want to come join us in the Fall.”

Today’s racing took place in the ocean off Seal Beach beneath sunny skies, with southwesterly breezes ranging from five to 12 knots. Competition continues tomorrow, Sunday, October 20, starting at noon. After the conclusion of two more planned races, a prize-giving reception will be held at LBYC at approximate 4:00 PM.

Day 1 Results

BOLT comes in for a striking finish during a race at the two-day Campbell Cup Regatta in Long Beach.

Photos by Betsy (Crowfoot) Senescu for LBYC

2019 Firefighters Smoke Rivals in LBYC’s ‘Heroes Regatta

LONG BEACH, CALIF – Long Beach Firefighters smoked the competition in a series of four races at the Long Beach Yacht Club Heroes Regatta. Roughly two-dozen first responders teamed up with coaches and club members, for the sixth running of one of LBYC’s favorite one-design sailing events.

Competitors from Long Beach first responder agencies were invited to the annual regatta, which was raced aboard the Catalina 37 fleet. Following a morning briefing and chalk talk, the crews set out for a practice race, then three windward-leewards.

Long Beach Lifeguards made a splash out of the gate, winning Race One by just inches, hoping to defend their Heroes Regatta title of 2018.

But after three races around the buoys, it was LBFD Station One in command, with a score of five points; with LBFD Station Four close astern.

The scorching weather may have given the firefighters an edge. Soaring temperatures inland sparked a stiff onshore breeze and classic Long Beach conditions prevailed, according to Racing Director Jess Gerry, who reported a “perfect” 8 to 12 knot breeze out of the southwest.

The fourth and final race was a 6nm random leg course from the inner harbor breakwater into Alamitos Bay, with the finish inside the harbor in front of LBYC. LBFD Station Four rallied and blazed ahead – winning the tie-breaker with LBFD Station One, and the Heroes Regatta Championship Title.

Rick Brizendine, a coach aboard the victorious boat, said, “The firefighters were a joy to sail with. Each readily and willingly – and probably unwittingly – accepted the most challenging positions, including bow and helm.”

Of Kelvin McCaleb, recruited to do foredeck, Brizendine said, “Even a skilled bowman can make any number of errors in any one maneuver, but ours were almost flawless. And Wade (Haller) on the helm really got the hang of driving and found the groove.”

But it wasn’t the first responders having all the fun. “We sail so often the competitiveness sometimes overcomes the joy,” Brizendine added. “Sailing with our local heroes brings the joy back to the sport. We’ve all participated in this regatta before, and will do it again. There is no shortage of volunteers from LBYC when the call goes out to volunteer for the Heroes or Patriot (for active duty military) Regattas.”

The winning crew consisted of Kelvin McCaleb, Wade Haller, Chris Macy, Bob Piercy, Ken Mattfeld, John French, Blair Carty and Rick Brizendine. Race Chair was Christina Mansour. A post race reception was held on the LBYC pool deck, with burgers for the competitors and their families, coaches and race management. To three teams were presented Olympic-style medals, recognizing their Olympian efforts both on and off the course.

For more information please visit www.lbyc.org.

Photo Credits:         SeaToSkyImages: Mike Reed/Tom Heaton

Durant Wins US Sailing Match Racing Qualifier

Long Beach, Calif., August 11, 2019 – Dustin Durant continued his winning streak today and locked in his place at the US Match Racing Championship Finals at St. Francis Yacht Club in San Francisco this October 3 through October 6.

After a 3-year hiatus from match racing, Durant and crew have officially got their groove back. After the 8 and 0 record yesterday, Durant said that he was a little nervous at the start, but following a practice race and logging their first win, it felt that he and his five crewmembers got back in the groove. “The teamwork was there,” the LBYC sailor said.

Trent Turigliatto, LBYC on the right, starts against Nesbitt in the 9th flight

Given that Durant is a four-time Congressional Cup Skipper and a two-time California Dreamin’ Series winner, and following yesterday’s sweep, the top-placed finish today was not a surprise. But with two races scheduled for today, anything could have happened.

The 31-year-old skipper shared the win with Shane Young on main, Neil Rietdyk and Wes Bryne on trim, Jack Bazz in the pit and Ian Paice upfront on the bow.

San Diego Yacht Club’s Chris Nesbitt will be one of the skippers Durant will face in October. Nesbitt also had a second strong day. Currently ranked 29th in the world and 5th in the US, Nesbitt competed here earlier this year in both the Butler Cup and Ficker Cup and has already qualified for the US Match Racing Championship. He won his first match today against Trent Turigliatto who arrived for today’s races with a sprained ankle and (adding insult to injury), incurred a penalty at the start.

Nesbitt’s second loss of the series came in the second race, and for a second time to Durant.

The second skipper qualified for the Championships is Cameron Feves, who won a qualifier in Chicago earlier this year and is the reigning Rose Cup winner. Feves didn’t have a strong showing Saturday, but he and his crew started to get to a better feel for the complexities of the Catalina 37s by the end of racing yesterday and put up a strong fight today in an attempt to break the three-way tie for third.

The day’s first flight saw all three seasoned skippers, Nesbitt, Liz Hjorth and Durant facing off against their younger rivals and schooled them handily. With the win in that flight, Hjorth, sailing for California Yacht Club, secured third place. Momentarily.

In the second flight, Feves turned up the heat, winning the race and drawing her back into the fold.

Chris Nesbitt, SDYC, and crew place second

When LBYC’s sailing coach, Trent Turigliatto beat Colton Gerber in the last race, both young rivals had scored a win against Hjorth, which resulted in how the third-place position finishers ranked.

Colton Gerber, a 23-year old Corpus Christi, Texas resident sailing for Ann Arbor Yacht Club finished in last place but will go home with a boatload of experience. A lengthy collegiate sailing resume garnered an invitation to this event. But the Catalina 37s, the largest boat he and the crew have sailed, challenged the team.

“Boat handling deficiencies caught up to us pretty quick,” Gerber said. “Trial by fire, it’s how it works in sailing.” He felt good about the progress he and the crew made by the end of the day and looked to improve boat speed day. The trip to California was also an alumni reunion of sorts as his entire crew is fellow University of Michigan alumni, with one crewmember in his senior year.

Even Parker Mitchell, who handles the main for Nesbitt, said the boats really put boat skills to the test. “It’s hard to win races without strong boat handling skills,” he said.

This race was also the first time Feves had sailed the Catalina 37. Along with the bigger boat, he picked up a few crew members with varying degree of experience. The 18-year-old, sailing for Cabrillo Beach Yacht Club, said they learned as they went; catching a couple of flags that didn’t go their way, but overall, were pleased with the progress made in just 10 races.

The USMRC Finals in San Francisco will be sailed in J/22s, boats that both Nesbitt and Feves have experience with. “We want to win that one,” Feves said.

This qualifier event was sailed in Long Beach Sailing Foundation’s fleet of identical Catalina 37 sailboats donated by Frank Butler, the president of Catalina Yachts, for use in Long Beach Yacht Club’s signature event, the Congressional Cup. They are used in many events throughout the year that test many a skipper’s sailing skills and the further development of those skills.

Although this was also Turigliatto’s debut as skipper on the Catalina 37, the young racer has frequently sailed as crew on the boats for other skippers. And as Durant’s win today affirms, experience, teamwork, and local knowledge is a recipe for success.

Racing started before noon today, on a course off the Belmont Veterans Memorial Pier. Winds of 9 – 10 knots filled in early creating elevated sailing conditions typical of late afternoons.

Content and Photos by Laurie Morrison for LBYC

2019 BEACH TO BAY EQUALS YOUTH COMPETITION AND CAMARADERIE

Long Beach, Calif., July 18, 2019 — It was family fun day at the 32nd annual Jessica Uniack Memorial Beach to Bay Race Thursday, July 18! The event for seven to 17-year old’s saw 122 boats race along a five-mile course that took 12 classes of dinghies, helmed by 144 young sailors, from the corner of Alamitos Beach near Island Grissom, off Belmont Veterans Memorial Pier to the finish line by the long dock of the race’s host, Long Beach Yacht Club.

Drone photos courtesy of LBYC Sailing Director Cameron MacLaren

Principal Race Officer Alexis Hall, a former coach for racers in this event, had the first class of boats underway at 10:30 a.m. following a 30-minute delay until the wind picked up. It was the largest race the 20-year-old PRO Rookie of the Year had organized. For some of the boats, it’s the only race of the year they leave the protection of Alamitos Bay and venture into the waters of the harbor.

Although last to start, the 29-boat CFJ fleet quickly weaved through the other competitors. Tate Christopher, of Alamitos Bay Yacht Club and crew Stewart McCaleb, crossed the finish at about 12:30 p.m. to claim the overall winner title. The pair were just eight boat lengths ahead of LBYC’s Alex Lech with his crew; brother Nicky Lech, who were followed closely by twins Scott Pearl and Chloe Pearl of ABYC.

“It was a great day on the water,” said Race Director and event Chairman Jess Gerry. “With clearing blue skies, winds that started at 5 to 7 knots and building to 7 to 9 created simply perfect conditions for these young sailors.”

The event was very much family-friendly and spectator-friendly, with coaches and parents cheering on the youngsters from shore, the pier or in dinghies, he said. In addition to the Lech’s and the Pearls who sailed together, Christopher’s brother Gage (who placed first in the O’pen Bic fleet) and 18 other sets of siblings participated.

With the majority of racers representing local yacht and sailing clubs, the race also had a strong neighborhood, community, and social vibe.

After the race, the kids quickly put away their boats and gear and hit the poolside deck for the burger bash. It was a scene from Caddyshack by the pool, Gerry said of the fun and camaraderie shared by the competitors.

“Beach to Bay is a regatta that both the coaches and sailors look forward to all summer long,” said Hall. “There is something special about watching 120 kids race with big smiles on their face and then enjoy a fun pool party.”

The burger bash was topped only by the awards ceremony where the Jessica Uniack Perpetual Trophy was awarded to ABYC’s Cole Barth for being the winning sailor in the largest fleet – the Sabot C3s.
The event is named for Jessica Uniack, a dedicated volunteer and supporter of junior sailing who died in 1994. Her husband, Staff Commodore Bill Uniack, attended Thursday’s race. Her son Billy Uniack helped the kids launch their boats, assisted with the recording finish times and presenting trophies.

At the ceremony, LBYC’s Preston Woodward picked up yet another trophy!

Last month, Woodward and Lech crewed for Trent Turigliatto at the Junior Match Racing Invitational and placed third. Yesterday, the 14-year-old borrowed a Laser Radial from LBYC coach Sawyer Gibbs; raced it for the first time and won the class.

COMPLETE RESULTS

Prizes were awarded to the top three finishers in each fleet:

Sabot C3
1st ABYC Cole Barth
2nd Leeway Asher Douglas
3rd Leeway Jacob Balster

Lasers Full Fleet
1st Leeway Kai Jorda
2nd HHYC Ben Hagadorn
3rd SLBYC Isaac Sweeney

Laser Radial
1st LBYC Preston Woodworth
2nd ABYC Tanner Jolly
3rd SLBYC Matthew Sas

Bic
1st ABYC Gage Christopher
2nd HHYC Ryan Misterly
3rd HHYC Miles Burnett

RS Tera
1st WLYC Emily Rychlik
2nd SMWYC Miles Gordon
3rd DPYC Christopher Daher

Sabot C1
1st LBYC Hannah Crompton
2nd LBYC Madison Mansour
3rd Leeway Claire Williams

Sabot C2
1st LBYC Taylor Carty
2nd LBYC Sophia Corzine
3rd LBYC Victoria Messano

Optimist
1st ABYC Jorge Alessandro Lettera
2nd ABYC Megan Farmer
3rd ABYC Fiona Barbeito

CFJ
1st ABYC Tate Christopher Stewart McCaleb
2nd LBYC Alex Lech Nicky Lech
3rd ABYC Scott Pearl Chloe Pearl