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F18 NAs


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#1 Surf City Racing

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 05:55 AM

I hitched the Surf City skiff to the truck, and to get the LBC vibe, I put Sublime in shuffle mode on the Ipod and started the 8 hour drive from Santa Cruz to Long Beach for the F18 NAs. The event hosted by Alamitos Bay Yacht Club, highlights a growing trend where established Yacht Clubs and Beach Cat sailors are joining forces rather than being like oil and water. The yacht clubs see the benefit of larger fleets of boats racing, added membership, a younger crowd, and the bottom line; more revenue. The sailors see the benefit of having a clubhouse, infrastructure for quality racing, and exposure to the sailing world at large. This trend is happening across North America, and there are strong F18 fleets developing all over.

I pulled into ABYC, launched the skiff, and hit the water just in time to see the first start. The wind was light, puffing to 8 knots maximum on course at one point. The RC set up the course inside of the breakwater so the seas were pretty flat.
The fleet consists of some very talented and well-known multihull sailors: Pete Melvin, Jay and Pease Glaser, Greg Thomas, Jacques Bernier, Coen de Koning, and Gunnar Larsen just to name a few. Plenty of talent to go around to say the least!

Race 1, Pete Melvin and his young son James took a bullet in the light shifty conditions, while Koning and his crew Thijs Visser took the second spot, followed by Ian Sammis and Bobby Klenschmidt. In race 2, Melvin and Koning swapped places with Denis Key and John Williams filling the third spot. Race 3, Koning finished first, Melvin second and Greg Thomas and Jacques Bernier finished up in the third spot, and thatís how the day finished up.

During the third race the fleet was getting more comfortable on the start line and began to push the limit. After 2 general recalls, Koning and Visser knew the fleet would be timid on the third start and decided to sit on the pin and port start the fleet. The accompanied pics tell the story of what happened.

Iíll be on the water all week, so if any anarchists want me to interview any of these guys, write your questions in the thread.

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#2 Surf City Racing

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 05:57 AM

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#3 Surf City Racing

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 06:33 AM

Pete spending quality time with his son!

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J

#4 MauganNacra20

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 01:12 PM

Nice Pics Jeremy. Those red wildcat sails really stick out!

#5 Tcatman

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 02:06 PM

Jeremy

Question for Pete Melvin.


You have won the worlds on A cats and also been part of the silver medal winnnig Tornado team with Randy. You have always had the main sheet in hand.... Can you give it up now to your son?

As an A cat sailor... the best you can do is talk to the gulls. Did you have an adjustment period on your boat and is training with your son on the front end much different then racing with your other team mates?

#6 Dan DeLave

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 02:14 PM

Question for Pete Melvin.

You have won the worlds on A cats and also been part of the silver medal winnnig Tornado team with Randy. You have always had the main sheet in hand.... Can you give it up now to your son?

As an A cat sailor... the best you can do is talk to the gulls. Did you have an adjustment period on your boat and is training with your son on the front end much different then racing with your other team mates?

Pete has mentioned to me that he would love for James to take the helm. I am sure it is just a matter of time.

Everytime I talk with James he seems to enjoy sailing with his dad. Hard to not like the front of the pack in a competitive fleet like this.

Later,
Dan

#7 dingram

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 03:54 PM

You're sailing well Dan. Good luck today.

Dave

#8 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 04:01 PM

NICE! Thanks SC - great to finally get home to Charleston after 3 months, sleep in, and wake up to some sweet cat action. Much appreciated!

#9 GIULIETTA1

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 04:09 PM

Pete and Randy?

#10 WxRouting.com

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 06:15 PM

Pete and Randy?


Jeremy:

Thursday and Friday should be more interesting for you! (A tad more breeze).

The wind is already 200-210 out in front of my office (The race course is right out the window) and today actually be a tad breezier than originally forecast as well late in the day.

#11 TheManShed

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 08:55 PM

Nice post! Great pics!

#12 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 09:04 PM

SC:

I'd ask maybe Pete or Pease where they think the F-18 is headed in NoAm. Can it build to the huge levels we see in Europe? What is gear development like in the class?

#13 DryArmour

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 09:49 PM

SC:

I'd ask maybe Pete or Pease where they think the F-18 is headed in NoAm. Can it build to the huge levels we see in Europe? What is gear development like in the class?


I had dinner with Jay and Pease on Monday night along with John Williams who might know a thing or two about the class and also ISAF. While optimistic about the class overseas there are a number of limiting factors here in the states including resistance by traditional clubs to embrace the multihull concept at all and access to mast up storage.

Internationally the class needs a sponsor (HELLO --shares???) to pick up the tab for thirty boats for the Olympics. That would help the class a lot as far as popularity and to provide a reason to compete at a high level here in the states. Unfortunately the brain surgeons that ignored the specific USSA directive to vote for a multihull discipline funneled that whole concept with one vote by taking out the ONLY MULTIHULL from the Olympics. (Don't get me started)

It does look like a lot of fun as I watch the boats rip along off Seal Beach right now. Wish I was out there!

#14 Tcatman

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Posted 09 September 2009 - 11:52 PM

I would ask Pease and Sandra as the two women helms and the handful of women crews point of view on the ISAF women's committee to rank multihulls below match racing and skiffs in the last round for 2012 disciplines.

If ISAF actually opted for the 5 balanced disciplines for 2012. How would the US women be able to ramp up for international competition?

What support would they need from US Sailing Olympic over the next 6 or 7 years to have a chance on the world stage?

What would they say to women sailors now on lasers or 420's about the physical nature of a racing catamaran that would encourage more women to give a cat class a try versus a skiff?

#15 Dan DeLave

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 04:53 AM

if you read Catsailor I am sorry this is the same post:

Today I sailed with Scott Millerís wife Patty instead of Eileen. Unfortunately my father was sent to the hospital on Friday. I have been visiting and it is kind of difficult as it is a 2 hour drive to San Diego. Eileen, sailed with me yesterday, but had a court appointment this morning. We had arranged, weeks ago, for Patty to sail with me this day. Due to the timing of my fatherís hospital stay I was not able to sail the Labor Day weekend regatta that preceded this race. I have been driving back and forth with Eileen. Today she said I should sail and she would go down by herself to see what was upÖ what a dear! We do not yet know about tomorrow. If I need to get down there in the morning I will miss the sailing. If I can be there in the afternoon I will just miss maybe the last two races. Patty was a bit timorous about sailing with me after a good showing yesterday with Eileen. She did not want to be responsible for us getting out of the top ten. She did great and I really appreciate her enthusiasm and the fun she had, we both had, while sailingÖthank you PattyÖand not too bad we are in 13th at this time. I think it is okay for never having sailed together and in such difficult conditions. Enough about me what about the sailing?

Today started of with some light winds. The forecast was for similar winds to yesterday which was very light all day. Yesterday we did not even get our diamond wires off the loosest setting. There were four races starting in about 6 knots and building to about 17/18? Yesterday we sailed in the harbor which is sheltered from the swells, pretty much. Today was off the coast of Seal Beach which can give you some confused seas. There is a swell that fetches from the wind and a surf swell that comes in from the south. The wind direction started at 180 and went to 230. At 180 the wind swell is about the same as the surf swell, so no problem. At 230 you can see that there is a 50 degree variant from each other. Challenging conditions for sure but everyone had a great time in them. Even people that flipped as many as three times, maybe more, had smiles on their faces.

All the dinners for this event are at the Yacht Club so there is camaraderie after the races with all the sailors swapping stories of the day. Really great time to sit with people you know on the forums or hear about in the stories.

There were no general recalls today but there were some individual ones. The courses were 1,1,2,2. All races took about 45 minutes to complete, except maybe the second which was about 10 minutes shorter due to increasing wind during the race. All the races were run very well. In the last two races it looked like the weather mark was a ways out there but it did not take too much time to get to it. Well done race committee.

Later,
Dan DeLave sail# 651

#16 Surf City Racing

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 06:10 AM

I had the chance to sit down and catch up with Pete Melvin and his 14 year-old son and crew James who are currently in second place with 5 total points, one point behind the leader.

JL: How is sailing with your son different from sailing with some of the pros that you have sailed with in the past?

PM: Itís been interesting, because when someone thatís been sailing for a long time hops on board, you expect them to know this, that and the other thing. With him, he hasnít sailed a boat with a spinnaker before, you know, done much racing at all. I wasnít really sure what to expect to be honest with you, but it actually makes you think about everything, back to the basics, to actually train someone to do this. I feel like Iíve relearned some things. We worked mostly on boat handling for the first 3 months, and now James is getting more familiar with the chess-game of sailing. Itís been fun.

JL: Tactics?

PM: Yeah, but mostly weíve rigged our boat so that, you know, heís not as strong as some of the guys that I sail with, so we rig our boat a little bit differently, so I can do more things. The main thing is pulling the spin halyard up, so heís gotten a lot better at that. At the house we actually rigged up this weight thing for him to practice. The first few times he was a little, you know, off balance, but heís been practicing at home, and now heís out sailing and now he can hoist just about as fast as anybody.

JL: Do you ever take the tiller James?

JM: Yea, when weíre sailing in.

JL: Think youíll ever get a boat of your own?

JM: Most likely.

JL:Youíre into it?

JM: Yeah.

PM: He sailed the Sabots here for, what was it 4 years?

JL: Here at ABYC?

PM: Yeah, they have a great junior program here. Like, 10 years ago it was almost dead and this guy Brad has just taken the thing and itís mushroomed into this amazing program. Itís fantastic. Thereís a bunch of kids around his age that really want to, they see the F18s going out and theyíre always begging to go. We need to organize some fun events, where all the guys with F18s get together and take them out with us.

JL: From a youth perspective, how could we as adults get more of you guys on F18s or other catamarans in general?

JM: Let them sail the boats! I know a lot of people that want to sail the bigger boats, theyíre tired of Sabots like I was.

JL: Just let them get on board and take control.

JM: Yeah

JL: Do you think people your age know how to get on a catamaran, just general people at your school?

JM: Most of them donít know anything about sailing.

JL: Do you ever see yourself competing against your dad on an A Class or F18?

JM: Maaaayybe?!

JL: Thanks guys, always good to see you.

James on the purple spi.
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#17 Surf City Racing

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 06:53 AM

Better conditions today!
The wind was light during the start of race one and completed in under 8 knots. Pete and James Melvin got the first, with Coen de Koning and Thijs Visser coming in a close second and Ian Sammis and Bobby Klenschmdt in third. The wind piped up to around 10 knots during the second race, puffing to 14, and it was full trap upcourse on the second lap. Konning and Visser cleaned-up for the next two races and Pete and James filled the number two slot. Dennis Key and John Williams picked up a third in the second race and Greg Thomas and Jacques Bernier filled the third spot in the third race. There was puffs to 18 on course in the late afternoon, and a good wind chop.

Aparently, we're a bit more modest here in the states than they are in the Netherlands, so in order to save our guests from the embarrassment of a second cultural faux pas, I took it upon myself to school our freinds from Europe on a few American cultural customs...You know, the one where the competitors buy the guy with the camera all the rum drinks that he needs. The first faux pas? You'll have to ask them!

Haven't been arrested yet, Clean.

Stand by for pix.

#18 Surf City Racing

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 01:54 PM

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Got a few good ones of you on day 2. Dan.

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My Canadian friends on their new boat.

#19 Surf City Racing

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 02:02 PM

Team NED hooking up around the A mark. Coen and Thijs flipped twice during this race. Once, shortly after this shot was taken and then just before the finish. They were trying to shut the door on Greg and Jacques at the last second and lost it just upwind of the start. They drifted on their side through the finish. Thijs shimmied up the bow and extended his hand out in search of the finish line.

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#20 Surf City Racing

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 02:12 PM

The 'New England Gangsters' looked trimmed up all day and are currently in 6th. Mike Easton and Tripp Burd.

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Jdub and Dennis Key reeled in a 3rd on race 2.

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#21 MauganNacra20

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 02:17 PM

That grey infusion is f'in awesome looking. My next boat is going to be that grey color (just like Tittycomb's infusion is/was(?) )

#22 Surf City Racing

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 02:24 PM

Took me 2 days to realize that this is the same FN boat as the gray one above. The hulls are half blue and half gray with contrasting colored stickers. Look closely at the port transom.
Sandra Tartaglino and Mark Modderman.

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Jack Young from Performance Cat invited me aboard this crazy, foiling power cat designed by Melvin/Morelli. The thing lays you back in the seat like an old V8 muscle car and then up on the foils it hits a second powerband. I like hauling-ass and don't usually get scared, but bloody hell that thing is nuts, I held on like a little baby holding on to its mama. When the boat gets up on the foils it just zips along just like there isn't any chop. Very smooth. Top speed is clasified (speedo was broken), but I can say it's fast e-freakin-nough.

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#23 Surf City Racing

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 02:31 PM

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A nice silhouette of Greg and Jacques aboard their new Wild Cat:
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#24 Surf City Racing

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 02:39 PM

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My friend Jeff Fortuna from Hobie took most of the shots on day 2, so we were able to get much closer to the action.

So interview the two women skippers? Good idea, I'll ask. What do you want to know?

Pics

J

#25 Surf City Racing

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 02:48 PM

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My friend Paulo Gabella, crew and Johan Keller Punti from Chile.
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That's enough cat porn for now.

#26 Surf City Racing

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 04:00 PM

I see you lurkin krash. I'll get you some pics for you today.

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#27 MauganNacra20

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 04:01 PM

Took me 2 days to realize that this is the same FN boat as the gray one above. The hulls are half blue and half gray with contrasting colored stickers. Look closely at the port transom.
Sandra Tartaglino and Mark Modderman.

Posted Image

Jack Young from Performance Cat invited me aboard this crazy, foiling power cat designed by Melvin/Morelli. The thing lays you back in the seat like an old V8 muscle car and then up on the foils it hits a second powerband. I like hauling-ass and don't usually get scared, but bloody hell that thing is nuts, I held on like a little baby holding on to its mama. When the boat gets up on the foils it just zips along just like there isn't any chop. Very smooth. Top speed is clasified (speedo was broken), but I can say it's fast e-freakin-nough.

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Ahhhh another Undecided of an updated flavor :)

As an owner of a boat thats half yeller, half white, I can't tell you the amount of grief it causes the competition when they look around them and go "WHERE THE HELL DID THAT YELLOW BOAT COME FROM?!"

Its a really awesome effect.

#28 mojonixon

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 06:26 PM

Ahhhh another Undecided of an updated flavor :)

As an owner of a boat thats half yeller, half white, I can't tell you the amount of grief it causes the competition when they look around them and go "WHERE THE HELL DID THAT YELLOW BOAT COME FROM?!"

Its a really awesome effect.



Yeah, Michael Yost has a yellow/white N20 here in Texas. It is effing annoying. I'm going to have to paint my next boat like that :)

#29 DryArmour

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 09:07 PM

Much better wind today (Thursday). Steady 14 now going to 19 at pier J with gusts at 24. NICE. Very clear and relatively warm.

The first cloud bands from Hurricane Linda are arriving from the SW. That may put a damper on wind for tomorrow but we will have to see how much of the desert areas they affect.

Update at 2:14PM, okay now it's starting to rip. Looks more like 16-20 gusting 26. Nice...

#30 Foghorn77

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 09:18 PM

Ahhhh another Undecided of an updated flavor :)

As an owner of a boat thats half yeller, half white, I can't tell you the amount of grief it causes the competition when they look around them and go "WHERE THE HELL DID THAT YELLOW BOAT COME FROM?!"

Its a really awesome effect.



Yeah, Michael Yost has a yellow/white N20 here in Texas. It is effing annoying. I'm going to have to paint my next boat like that :)


Is it the boat or the skipper?

#31 Nacraphiliac

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Posted 10 September 2009 - 09:50 PM

Ahhhh another Undecided of an updated flavor :)

As an owner of a boat thats half yeller, half white, I can't tell you the amount of grief it causes the competition when they look around them and go "WHERE THE HELL DID THAT YELLOW BOAT COME FROM?!"

Its a really awesome effect.



Yeah, Michael Yost has a yellow/white N20 here in Texas. It is effing annoying. I'm going to have to paint my next boat like that :)


Is it the boat or the skipper?


So, you know him?! ;)

#32 Surf City Racing

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Posted 11 September 2009 - 08:19 AM

The race committee decided to set up the course inside of the breakwater today, which made for some great spectating off the beach. The usual, the morning races were held in lighter conditions than the afternoon and it blew in the upper teens max on course. The top spots were jumbled around a bit today, but with Koning and Visser continuing their domination with 2 bullets, a 2 and a 5. Their Dutch teammates, Larsen and Leeuwen, moved up a few spots in the standings with a 2,5,1, and a 2. Pete and James are only 2 points from second place and Greg and Jacques are 2 points from Pete.

The quality of racing is incredible to watch, these guys are really good! The club and diners are great. This is a perfect venue for this type of event.

I interviewed the skippers and crews from the NED boats and will transcribe it soon.

Talked to Sandra and will ask Pease tomorrow about doing a little interview to get a women's F18 perspective.

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Here's a little more cat porn:
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J

#33 Surf City Racing

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Posted 11 September 2009 - 08:23 AM

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#34 Surf City Racing

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Posted 11 September 2009 - 08:26 AM

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#35 Tcatman

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Posted 11 September 2009 - 05:21 PM

Jeremy

One more question set. Perhaps of JW a Canadian and a east coast racer.

You have a strong west coast fleet of F18's and a small New England fleet in attendance. Canada is having a big championship in a few weeks. The travel in NA is a real killer in building a nationally prominent class. The New England Fleet had a big travel trailer as a solution.

What kind of national event schedule and transportation solution would get the class to step up a notch and grow some more in North America?


Thanks for the Melvin's interview.... top notch! (made the front page!!)

#36 Dan DeLave

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Posted 12 September 2009 - 04:59 AM

Today was a fantastic day on the water! Anywhere between 8 at the start to 20 somewhere in the middle of the course. That is not me it is from the committee. Swells were about 3 to 4 foot so the downwind was really a treat for a surfer. Races went Course 2,2,1,1. There was some interesting things happening with the wind. Usually when the wind blows out of 220 to 235 it is really consistent with little change. This being the NAs though it started blowing then in the middle of the day backed off then piped up again toward the end. I was sailing in a shorty wetsuit and very comfortable all day. If you were able to share this day with us in Long Beach you would be back for more. It is rarely better any place in the world than it was today.

A very informative clinic was put on this morning by the teams from the Netherlands. They gave us all their secrets then proceeded to keep teaching us on the water.

After the races we were treated to a great dinner of cedar plank cooked salmon for which our manager, Kelly, is locally world famous. A great band played during and after dinner and was still at it when I left. I wish all that those that planned to be here could have made it. We have 27 teams having a time of it.

Later,
Dan

#37 Tornado_ALIVE

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Posted 12 September 2009 - 09:42 AM

Ahhhh another Undecided of an updated flavor :)

As an owner of a boat thats half yeller, half white, I can't tell you the amount of grief it causes the competition when they look around them and go "WHERE THE HELL DID THAT YELLOW BOAT COME FROM?!"

Its a really awesome effect.



Yeah, Michael Yost has a yellow/white N20 here in Texas. It is effing annoying. I'm going to have to paint my next boat like that :)


But paint it the opposite........ That will realy f$%k with everybody.

#38 Surf City Racing

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Posted 12 September 2009 - 10:46 AM

Quickie interview with Gunnar Larsen, Jeroen van Leeuwen, Coen de Koning and Thijs Visser

Who the heck are these Dutch guys anyway? Between them they have several F18 Worlds Titles and their sailing during the F18 North Americans showed everyone exactly why. These guys are fast!

A few years back, Aaron Worrall and Worstie from Australlia came to out Hobie 16 NAs in Alameda, CA and proceeded to school our highly pedigreed 16 fleet. Sometimes these guys bettered our best by a leg. I remember being dumfounded as to how these two made the same boat go so much faster than anyone else.

Thatís how I felt at the beginning of this week while watching Coen and Thijs utterly school the rest of a pretty good fleet with a bunch of bullets. Today, Friday, things started to unravel slightly for the pair with three 3rd palces and a 10th. Still pretty good, right? Their team mates Gunnar and Jeroen, who started off the week with a 7th, a couple of 4ths and 6th, came alive today with 3 bullets and a 2nd!

Watch out though, Greg Thomas and Jacques tweaked a few things and finished with a bullet and three 2nds today, putting them in a solid 3rd overall. Just saying.

Every Dutch guy Iíve ever met has been super laid back, which Iíve always attributed to the fact that their capitol is Amsterdam, and Gunnar, Jeroen, Coen and Thijs are no different. Clear all of that junk off the couch guys, Iím coming to visit for a while! Hereís what they had to say about the state of F18 affairs:

JL: What are some of the major differences between F18 sailing here in the States and what you guys are doing in Europe?

CK: You guys are going slower. (everyone laughs)

GL: This (Long Beach) is a nice place to sail really. Iíve been in two places in the U.S., Miami and here and both are awesome, great circumstances, great climate, and really fun sailing.

JL: How is the fleet different here in the U.S.?

CK: The fleets in Europe in the f18 class are a little bit larger. The first F18 North Americans I sailed was in Michigan in 2001. Compared to 2001 and now the level of the American F18 sailors has gone up a lot. Itís a very big difference. Itís good because the class gets bigger and bigger worldwide, which is a good thing. The reason we came all the way here to Long Beach was to achieve a good performance, but also to help the Formula 18 class grow.

TV: In Holland itís growing and I think you guys are following us here.

JL: Where do you think F18 sailing is headed? Worldwide, but especially here in the States.

CK: Itís definitely growing. There are signals coming from anywhere and everywhere worldwide of Formula 18s picking up, and there are many new class associations starting every year. South America is adopting the F18. They used to have Prindle 19 and Prindle 18-2 fleet, but now itís being converted to F18. It has everything to do with that it is possible for people to come to our worlds and compete on our boats, maybe not on the same level, but they can actually train at home.

JL:I hear that you guys learned that there are some cultural differences between how Americans take off their wet-gear and how the Dutch do it? Letís hear about your little incident in the parking lot.

(Everyone laughs)

CK: Yes, Thijs was swinging his two-pounder in the parking lot and some girls couldnít take it anymore. Now theyíre ruined for life. In the Netherlands everyone gets naked on the beach and no one really cares, and I guess here youíre more modest.

(Everyone laughs)

JL: Right on. Well, itís really nice to have you guys here to up the level of competition for this event. Hope to see you soon.


Gunnar Larsen, Jeroen van Leeuwen sail # 1202, Coen de Koning and Thijs Visser sail # 3

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#39 Surf City Racing

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Posted 12 September 2009 - 11:13 PM

Last day of racing for the F18 North Americans. Wind was light, increasing in the afternoon. Full results to be posted soon. Thanks to John Williams and his crew at ABYC for putting on such a high quality event.
The official results have no been posted yet, but I can tell you that the first North American team, in a solid 3rd overall, is Greg Thomas and Jacques Bernier. Here's an interview that I did with them on Friday:

Hailing from San Diego, Greg Thomas and Jacques Bernier are well-known in the cat sailing world and they have an extensive resume of accomplishments. They are multiple Hobie Tiger national champions, North American F18 champs, placed first in the Alter Cup, Jacques is a Tornado National champ, and Greg did two Olympic Tornado campaigns, and together they have placed in the top 5 at several Tiger Worlds events. Here's what's on their minds.

JL: Are you happy with the performance of your new Wild Cat? Coming from a Tiger are you getting used to the differences in performance?

GT: Yeah. If you look at our results you can actually tell that we're progressing through the week. We actually had a warm-up regatta the weekend beforehand, and once the Nationals started, it's been a little bit more competitive, a lot more competitive. You can see our results especially after today, we kind of start out medium, and as the week goes we just keep getting faster and faster.

JL: So you've only been on the new boat for 10 days or so. Do you feel that you're getting it dialed in?

JB: I think this is maybe the seventh day we've been sailing it. Today we thought we had the tuning better.

GT: Actually after yesterday we figured out something on the boat, and we definitely felt that we were much better out there.

JL: Is that 'something' top secret?

GT: No, actually it's just the diamond wire tension. We tightened the diamonds and it settled the boat down a bit. It made it go forward, rather than popping a hull up and down.

JB: We just have to communicate a lot more on this boat, like I have to tell him more, alright you've got to foot now and I'm sheeting you out. I'll just tell him stuff. We don't just feel stuff like we did on the Tiger. The boat has this thing where it just goes at a certain setting and if you get it wrong the boat feels like it just stops, especially in the chop. If you hit a couple of waves wrong it feels like it stops, so we always try to anticipate waves. It's the communication thing again, were I know there's waves coming and I have to sheet him out so he can bear away through the wave and I'll just ease him back in, and he eases the steering back up. It's just all-new for us.

JL: It's the modern flat hull designs?

GT: Yeah, the Tiger has a lot more rocker, so it's easier to sail in that kind of stuff, the chop, any kind of chop. So the boats with the flat bottoms like the Wild Cat, you just try to find that groove to keep the boat going forward, because once it starts slapping and bouncing, it's hard to stop it.

JL: I heard you guys talking with Jay and Pease and Pete the other day at dinner about the attributes of the different hull shapes. Would you mind repeating some of that?

JB: I don't actually remember that conversation, but I know that we've talked about stuff like that in the past. It seems, the Nacra seems to do really well in super flat water and under 6 knots. In those conditions it's really hard staying to windward of those guys. We just have to sail free, to tack away and just try to keep our own focus on our boat. We have the same pace, but we sail at a different angle. And the Capricorn, this particular Capricorn has a sail that is really sort of round and the leech stands up, so in 6 to 8 knots they're really tough, because the boat is powered up, and they get on the wire sooner than everybody. But once the breeze increases to 10, they don't get the same twist as we do, and don't get the same acceleration. They kind of seem to start in a high mode, whereas the Wild Cat seems to have a really good spread. You can do a lot of things with it, you can go high, medium, low without really fussing with it too much.

JL: Both of you have been working a lot on developing the F18 class here in the U.S. I know Greg, you've done some tuning seminars and Jacques, you too. What's the next step for the F18? Do you thing it's going to take off here in the U.S.?

GT: We've been trying for years to get this thing going. I mean we were the original F18 guys, we started sailing a Tiger, which is F18, that was almost 9 years ago. So we've been trying for years and years and it seems like it got to a point, like it was going to take off, and then it fell off a little bit. It has its moments where it feels like it has the momentum, but it just doesn't really happen. I don't know what the answer is. We've been trying.

JB: There's little pockets of F18s in different parts of the country where it's quite strong. We're lucky here, we have, I think there's 5 or 6 teams in the top 10 and there all from here. The level of competition here where we train is really, really good, and so that helps our sailing obviously, especially when you go, to a say a Worlds or go sail in Europe, you know, you're more on the pace then if you were, like the guys from Seattle for example. They all kind of sail together, and they are all sort of doing the same things (as far as tuning the boat), but a lot of that isn't necessarily fast. So, we've been talking to them about how to set the boat up and how to sail the boat, just because we've had a bunch of time on it.
I think to get more participation, say at a Nationals in this down economy, so to get boats from the East Coast to come all the way to California. I mean it's expensive to trailer a boat here. I think the fleet's been spit this year, there's a regatta in Canada. The Canadian Nationals, all the guys in the Northeast are going to go there. So that kind of hurt our participation for this event. Whenever we have an F18 event here in the West it seems like, there are more F18 on the Eastern seaboard. When we did the event in Virginia a lot of boats showed up that don't like to come all the way to California, I think we had over 40 boats. This year though, everybody's been downsized, so I think those two factors kind of hurt participation.

GT: Yeah, If you look at the combination of this event and the Canadian event that are going to happen in two weeks, they're going to have 40 plus boats and we have around 27, so that would be about 65 boats total boats for a nationals for one year, so that's more than we've had before. That's one way to like at it.

JL: Do you think that having a class trailer or something like that would help boost participation?

GT: Definitely.

JB: Wouldn't hurt.

GT: Yeah, people want to go to these regattas, but it's just finding other guys to stack with, or the one team that came here, they had a five-stack trailer, but that didn't quite work out. Definitely, anything we could do to get more guys to come out.

JL: It's always great watching you guys race, you make the boats go pretty good out there. Thanks.

GT: Always having fun!

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#40 Surf City Racing

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Posted 13 September 2009 - 03:13 AM

Oh, and congratulations to Greg and Jacques, the new North American F18 Champs! Another one for the sailing resume!

Results

J

#41 Surf City Racing

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Posted 13 September 2009 - 04:11 PM

Will be adding more pics shortly.

Here

#42 SFbayForMe

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Posted 13 September 2009 - 10:08 PM

Oh, and congratulations to Greg and Jacques, the new North American F18 Champs! Another one for the sailing resume!

Results

J

Jeremy, how did the F-18 models fare? Any clear differences or conclusions after the regatta? You mentioned the adjustments to the Wildcat but it looks like the Nacra dominated?

#43 Scarecrow

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Posted 13 September 2009 - 10:16 PM

Re-read the results. Take out the two NED boats (who by the sounds of it were are step above the rest skill wise) and a wildcat gets the top place literally straight out of the box.

#44 Surf City Racing

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 01:02 AM

Jeremy, how did the F-18 models fare? Any clear differences or conclusions after the regatta? You mentioned the adjustments to the Wildcat but it looks like the Nacra dominated?


I am amazed at how fair F18 racing seems to be at this point especially in varying conditions like we had in Bong Leach. With PHRF racing there's always some argument as to whether a rating fits the boat. Check out the interview with Greg and Jacques, they touch on the attributes of the different hull shapes slightly. I wish I had the recorder going when all of the heavyweights were talking about the attributes of the different boats at dinner. It was a pretty incredible discussion.

For me to say that one boat is CLEARLY dominating (at this point at least) would be nothing more than hyperbole. The NED teams are multiple-time and current WORLD champions. They are freakin really good sailors. Greg and Jacques are really freaking good sailors too, and the fact that they hopped on a new boat and placed 3rd in a Championships is remarkable to me, but they've never been World Champs. For Pete Melvin to place 4th with his 14 YO son with limited F18 experience on board is pretty awesome too. So there are lots of factors.

Currently uploading the rest of the pics. All of the 'Misc' pics here were taken by my friend Jeff Fortuna.

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#45 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 01:03 AM

Well done Jeremy - great job out there. We need to do more of this, you've got mad skillz bro.

#46 John Williams

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 01:39 AM

Re-read the results. Take out the two NED boats (who by the sounds of it were are step above the rest skill wise) and a wildcat gets the top place literally straight out of the box.


Yes, yes... ignore the results and the results speak volumes! Twaddle. Greg and Jacques have won this event before. It is no surprise to me that they are the North American Champs again. Last time, they won by 60 points or so... on a Tiger... so that must be the ultimate boat, right?

The sailors make the difference in this class. Period.

#47 vmg

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 01:43 AM

About time someone congratulated Gunnar for beating the 2-year world champion.

well done Gunnar and jeroen

#48 Surf City Racing

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 06:15 AM

1st
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2nd
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#49 Surf City Racing

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 06:17 AM

3rd
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4th
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#50 Africat

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 05:07 PM

Thanks for all this great coverage, Jeremy! Much appreciated, especially now that I'm in West Africa, where cat racing is limited and more low key. :P

#51 flumpmaster

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Posted 15 September 2009 - 04:18 AM

Re-read the results. Take out the two NED boats (who by the sounds of it were are step above the rest skill wise) and a wildcat gets the top place literally straight out of the box.


Yes, yes... ignore the results and the results speak volumes! Twaddle. Greg and Jacques have won this event before. It is no surprise to me that they are the North American Champs again. Last time, they won by 60 points or so... on a Tiger... so that must be the ultimate boat, right?

The sailors make the difference in this class. Period.

Well said John - I completely agree. Boat speed differences between different F18s count for so little compared to the quality of your start, picking the correct side of the course, nailing the shifts, flawless execution of transitions, tacks and gybes as well as keeping in clean air and making good tactical decisions when in close quarters with other boats.

I've spent this season drag racing in distance events - and done OK. Around the cans at the North Americans - not so much. In a straight line drag race in big breeze (start to the first mark rounding when one side was clearly favoured) we could hand close to the front guys - but then made steady progress backwards in the fleet as we were comprehensively out sailed by others.

This is what I love about the class - it's so much more about the sailor than the boat. But folks love following fashion or convince themselves that a new sexy boat will move them up in the fleet. I don't buy it. Quality time on the water (competing and training) and getting good advice from the top folk is what it takes to get significantly better in the F-18 fleet. It's tough to look in the mirror and acknowledge you are accountable for your performance - and not the boat you are sailing.

Greg and Jaques performance is very credible given the very limited time they've had on this boat.

Chris.

#52 Scarecrow

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Posted 15 September 2009 - 04:38 AM

Re-read the results. Take out the two NED boats (who by the sounds of it were are step above the rest skill wise) and a wildcat gets the top place literally straight out of the box.


Yes, yes... ignore the results and the results speak volumes! Twaddle. Greg and Jacques have won this event before. It is no surprise to me that they are the North American Champs again. Last time, they won by 60 points or so... on a Tiger... so that must be the ultimate boat, right?

The sailors make the difference in this class. Period.

Well said John - I completely agree. Boat speed differences between different F18s count for so little compared to the quality of your start, picking the correct side of the course, nailing the shifts, flawless execution of transitions, tacks and gybes as well as keeping in clean air and making good tactical decisions when in close quarters with other boats.

I've spent this season drag racing in distance events - and done OK. Around the cans at the North Americans - not so much. In a straight line drag race in big breeze (start to the first mark rounding when one side was clearly favoured) we could hand close to the front guys - but then made steady progress backwards in the fleet as we were comprehensively out sailed by others.

This is what I love about the class - it's so much more about the sailor than the boat. But folks love following fashion or convince themselves that a new sexy boat will move them up in the fleet. I don't buy it. Quality time on the water (competing and training) and getting good advice from the top folk is what it takes to get significantly better in the F-18 fleet. It's tough to look in the mirror and acknowledge you are accountable for your performance - and not the boat you are sailing.

Greg and Jaques performance is very credible given the very limited time they've had on this boat.

Chris.


I think you misinterpreted my intention John. Read through my previous posts on the subject and you'll see I agree whole heartedly about F18 as a level playing field. My intention was actually to point out the Nacra far from dominated, rather than to suggest the Hobie was a superior boat.

#53 John Williams

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Posted 15 September 2009 - 06:37 AM

Perhaps, but even your clarification is focused on one boat dominating or being superior. It was epic to share the course with World and National champions. The clinic session was remarkable, not because the content wasn't unknown to me, but because there were something like six or seven accents in the room; Dutch, couple flavours of Brit, French by way of Canada, Italian, Jersey, Kiwi, South African, Texan, Chilean, and my down-home drawl. We had the good fortune, Dennis and I, of leading the fleet for a full lap after losing out on a port start and ducking the whole fleet - I swear that listening to the voices in the clinic is neck and neck with that race for my personal Kodak moment of the week.

#54 Surf City Racing

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Posted 15 September 2009 - 04:13 PM

Posted Image

JDUB and Dennis smoldering upwind.

J

#55 Foghorn77

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Posted 15 September 2009 - 04:32 PM

Posted Image

JDUB and Dennis smoldering upwind.

J


Can you imagine how fast "little John" would be if he shaved his head?
JC, it might be a good time to call in your debts...
It'd be for his own good.

#56 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 15 September 2009 - 04:46 PM

Can you imagine how fast "little John" would be if he shaved his head?
JC, it might be a good time to call in your debts...
It'd be for his own good.

I didn't know you could race F-18s with a wig on.

#57 MauganNacra20

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Posted 15 September 2009 - 05:08 PM

Thats a squirrel living up there. He's already bald :P

#58 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 15 September 2009 - 05:18 PM

Thats a squirrel living up there. He's already bald :P

Sooner and later, we all are ;)

#59 John Williams

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 03:17 AM

No critique of trap technique or boat rigging, no discussion of how the boat is moving through the chop, no questions about crew weight or wind conditions or Dennis' awesome VHF sleeve that he fabricated the night before, no gasping over the mid-boom sheeting and the deflection of the trampoline... nope. It's about my hair.

Awesome shot, as are 99% of the others that you and Fortuna took, Big J - thanks for being there!

PS - Tiny Man isn't anymore. You need a new nickname for your progeny.

#60 Foghorn77

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 03:27 AM

No critique of trap technique or boat rigging, no discussion of how the boat is moving through the chop, no questions about crew weight or wind conditions or Dennis' awesome VHF sleeve that he fabricated the night before, no gasping over the mid-boom sheeting and the deflection of the trampoline... nope. It's about my hair.

Awesome shot, as are 99% of the others that you and Fortuna took, Big J - thanks for being there!

PS - Tiny Man isn't anymore. You need a new nickname for your progeny.


Yeah,Yeah, All that stuff is great , but we like your hair ,it's always a great topic.

p.s. Do you pull on a little more outhaul when you have your boom bent like that? :blink:

#61 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 03:30 AM

No critique of trap technique or boat rigging, no discussion of how the boat is moving through the chop, no questions about crew weight or wind conditions or Dennis' awesome VHF sleeve that he fabricated the night before, no gasping over the mid-boom sheeting and the deflection of the trampoline... nope. It's about my hair.

Have you never watched reality TV? It ain't about what you think is important...

#62 John Williams

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 03:35 AM

Now you're talkin', Tawd. Never occurred to me, but it would make sense, right? Boom bending like that would soften the bottom of the main, maybe at a time you don't really want it to. I need to mull that over a bit. Thanks!

#63 Surf City Racing

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 07:04 AM

Awesome shot, as are 99% of the others that you and Fortuna took, Big J - thanks for being there!


Nice to be there Jdub. Thanks for having me.

To let you guys in on a little inside info, and not really wanting to hijack my own thread, but whatever. We had a fleet meeting here in NorCal and decided that the media coverage of sailing is lacking...and especially cat sailing. So, I figured that since I know how sailboats move over a course pretty well, and usually work as safety boat at various events, I could double up as media boat. If people saw what I see on the water, I think it would boost the excitement and hopefully the participation a bit. So, I've been tooling up with cameras and whatnot, and starting to learn how to cover events a little better. I really have no clue how to do it, so it's going to take a bit of figuring; but I do know a lot of sailors, which would make interviews easier. Anyway, that's my program. Next event I hope to cover is the Havamega in Havasu. Then, I hope to cover the Tybee while driving the van for these MFers:

Posted Image

Hopefully it works out. I picture a sort of 'Fear and Loathing' scenario, but with sailboats, a Van and Clean standing by saying, "as your attorney...." What do you think?

#64 Africat

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 09:44 PM

Jeremy: I'll be waiting -- with baited breath -- for the next episode of you event-coverage magic! Havamega sounds like a perfect next step. Wish I could make it. But since I can't, your coverage will be the next best thing to the real deal. Major Kudos, dude. And, hang loose!

#65 MR.CLEAN

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 09:48 PM

Fuck yes, brother. Fuck yes.

#66 F-18 5150

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 10:09 PM

Tybee Ground crew with Big J. You driving across or flying? I'm in.

#67 Tcatman

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 10:56 PM

Awesome shot, as are 99% of the others that you and Fortuna took, Big J - thanks for being there!


Nice to be there Jdub. Thanks for having me.

To let you guys in on a little inside info, and not really wanting to hijack my own thread, but whatever. We had a fleet meeting here in NorCal and decided that the media coverage of sailing is lacking...and especially cat sailing. So, I figured that since I know how sailboats move over a course pretty well, and usually work as safety boat at various events, I could double up as media boat. If people saw what I see on the water, I think it would boost the excitement and hopefully the participation a bit. So, I've been tooling up with cameras and whatnot, and starting to learn how to cover events a little better. I really have no clue how to do it, so it's going to take a bit of figuring; but I do know a lot of sailors, which would make interviews easier. Anyway, that's my program. Next event I hope to cover is the Havamega in Havasu. Then, I hope to cover the Tybee while driving the van for these MFers:

Posted Image

Hopefully it works out. I picture a sort of 'Fear and Loathing' scenario, but with sailboats, a Van and Clean standing by saying, "as your attorney...." What do you think?

If that was your first try at media guru.... all I can say is WOW!

The photos' were fantastic and all of the interviews with some of the sailors was first rate... Well beyond the trivial "happy talk" usually published in the sailing press.... The leadership you took in getting the the top tier amateur cat racers point of view on lots of issues out to the sailing public on how we move forward was spot on. The killer Melvins' interview deserved to be highlighted on the front page and was far better then any "happy talk" about the event

The top guys need to listen to the rank and file to lead and we in the rank and file need to support their leadership and follow. You brought up some of the tough issues the community faces. Your role in moving this ball forward... was terrific. Looking forward to your next round of interviews at the Hobie Mega at Havasue!

kudos also to picking this forum for your posts... As much as we like Catsailor... the average sail boat racer will not find this photo story on Catsailor forums.

California has led the way of beach cats joining the racing scene at Yacht clubs and so your getting the word out about how successful this relationship is and how dynamic our niche of the sport is was invaluable. Our future is with the classic YC's and getting our story out like this is a great step forward. We acknowledge what a great job Altimos Bay YC did and how much the racers appreciate the effort. Every YC, I know of would be really grateful to have an experience safety boat coming out of the blue to assist their effort... Kudo's!

IMO, The two best threads on SA are Clean's video interview with Kristen Lane at the Melges NA's and your interviews with cat racers this past week.

This is what we need more of.

Thanks

#68 Foghorn77

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Posted 17 September 2009 - 12:30 AM

Awesome shot, as are 99% of the others that you and Fortuna took, Big J - thanks for being there!


Nice to be there Jdub. Thanks for having me.

To let you guys in on a little inside info, and not really wanting to hijack my own thread, but whatever. We had a fleet meeting here in NorCal and decided that the media coverage of sailing is lacking...and especially cat sailing. So, I figured that since I know how sailboats move over a course pretty well, and usually work as safety boat at various events, I could double up as media boat. If people saw what I see on the water, I think it would boost the excitement and hopefully the participation a bit. So, I've been tooling up with cameras and whatnot, and starting to learn how to cover events a little better. I really have no clue how to do it, so it's going to take a bit of figuring; but I do know a lot of sailors, which would make interviews easier. Anyway, that's my program. Next event I hope to cover is the Havamega in Havasu. Then, I hope to cover the Tybee while driving the van for these MFers:

Posted Image

Hopefully it works out. I picture a sort of 'Fear and Loathing' scenario, but with sailboats, a Van and Clean standing by saying, "as your attorney...." What do you think?


That skipper guy talks funny and wears spongebob shoes, but he can fix the hell out of a split bow. Thanks again, Chris.

#69 F18 VB

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Posted 17 September 2009 - 03:42 AM

Next event I hope to cover is the Havamega in Havasu.

Make sure you get some good off the water coverage. People who have never been to a Hobie regatta have no idea how much fun a Hobie regatta can be with the BBQ's, beach camping, family fun, and friendliness. People in these forums are always asking how to get more women or their children involved. I would bet that 50% of the teams have women or child crew.

#70 Africat

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Posted 17 September 2009 - 08:46 PM

People who have never been to a Hobie regatta have no idea how much fun a Hobie regatta can be with the BBQ's, beach camping, family fun, and friendliness. People in these forums are always asking how to get more women or their children involved. I would bet that 50% of the teams have women or child crew.


I would definitely be interested in the family aspect! We've got another three years here in West Africa. When we return Stateside in 2012, getting the family stoked and involved will be key to getting my own cat.




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