F18 NAs

SurfCityCatamarans

Super Anarchist
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Santa Cruz
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 that’s 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.

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

Results

Pics

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Tcatman

Super Anarchist
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Chesapeake Bay
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?

 
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

 

MR.CLEAN

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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!

 

WxRouting.com

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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.

 

MR.CLEAN

Moderator
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Not here
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?

 

DryArmour

Super Anarchist
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!

 

Tcatman

Super Anarchist
1,485
135
Chesapeake Bay
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?

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

Today I sailed with Scott Miller’s 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 father’s 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 up… 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 sailing…thank you Patty…and 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

 

SurfCityCatamarans

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Santa Cruz
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: It’s been interesting, because when someone that’s been sailing for a long time hops on board, you expect them to know this, that and the other thing. With him, he hasn’t sailed a boat with a spinnaker before, you know, done much racing at all. I wasn’t 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 I’ve 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. It’s been fun.

JL: Tactics?

PM: Yeah, but mostly we’ve rigged our boat so that, you know, he’s 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 he’s 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 he’s been practicing at home, and now he’s out sailing and now he can hoist just about as fast as anybody.

JL: Do you ever take the tiller James?

JM: Yea, when we’re sailing in.

JL: Think you’ll ever get a boat of your own?

JM: Most likely.

JL:You’re 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 it’s mushroomed into this amazing program. It’s fantastic. There’s a bunch of kids around his age that really want to, they see the F18s going out and they’re 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, they’re 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 don’t 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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SurfCityCatamarans

Super Anarchist
2,087
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Santa Cruz
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.

 

SurfCityCatamarans

Super Anarchist
2,087
0
Santa Cruz
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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