Archive | April, 2018

Big Finish: TTL Spring Racing

Spring racing is over and we can congratulate the spring champs: Laser, Joel Hurley; C14, Dave Haggart; Portsmouth, Andy Oliver. For the combined fall-spring, the champs are C14, Dave Haggart; Laser, Joel Hurley; Portsmouth, Mike Parker.

The Laser Fleet championship ended in a knife fight between Joel Hurley and Paul Miachika, with gusting and shifting wind on Tempe Town Lake for Sunday’s Semi-Final weekend (4/29) and the final on May 6. For the April 29 race, the city’s wind-strength light was flashing most of the afternoon, signaling wind over 15 mph. Since the breeze was coming from the southwest, it funneled through the buildings on the south shore, making sailing very difficult.

The final scores for the Spring Series are available here. And here’s the fall-spring combined, determining the fleet champions for the year. Many thanks to score-cruncher Mark Howell for figuring them out.

Grim determination. Photo: Mike Ferring

 

Joel Hurley heads for the finish, ready for a sudden wind shift. Photo: Mike Ferring

Fleet Captain Will Zornik. Photo: Mike Ferring

Paul Miachika after a surprise puff. Amazingly he lost only a few seconds on the rounding. Photo: Mike Ferring

Officially Unofficial Flotilla to Catalina

By Rob Gibbs

It’s heating up in AZ and soon we’ll all start hiding in the comfort of our air-conditioned homes, offices, and cars. What a better way to escape the heat than to go sailing on the waters of the Pacific… and Catalina Island is a great destination.

The weekend of July 21-22 will be AYC’s Officially Unofficial Flotilla to Catalina! We’ll keep it really simple. Just show up in Avalon sometime that weekend. Need a boat? There are several options from Marina Sailing and Harbor Island YC and others. Or just ferry over on the Catalina Flyer to hang out with the group.

Your flotilla host will be Rob Gibbs, AYC’s Vice Commodore. Not been on a charter before? No problem! We’ll make an effort to prepare anyone who has questions about chartering. Never been to Avalon? Going with a flotilla is a great way to enjoy a new cruising grounds and get tips from people that have been before. Been to Avalon a bunch? Great! Come give us all the inside info!

If you’re interested or want more information, please email RobDaSailor@gmail.com.

Avalon Harbor on Catalina Island.

Cruising to Avalon is great for the entire family, including the kids and the dog.

Court Roberts Wins 2018 Tall Cactus

It’s a bit of a gamble with a pursuit race. With some 41 boats entered in this year’s Tall Cactus, which ones would benefit from a light wind start and which ones would gain as the wind came up?

By the time they’d all gone around Horse, Balance Rock, and Bobcat Islands and crossed the finish at Scorpion Bay Marina, Sport Boats had passed everyone who started before them and finished 1-2-3. It was Court Roberts’ team (with Tony Chapman driving, Bob Whyte trimming) in the lead, followed closely by Mike Hester (with Joel Hurley), and not so closely by Mike Ferring (with Maryellen Ferring, Ray Chapman, and Gail Palmer).

Then all that was left to do was to party on the deck at Scorpion’s Grill on a beautiful Saturday afternoon.

Many thanks to Regatta Chairman Tom Errickson and to his helpers, including Tom Ohlin and Andy Oliver and several others.

Race winner Court Roberts chats with Maryellen Ferring. Photo: Mike Ferring

These two have seen some AYC history! Tom Ohilin on the left and Bob Worrall on the right. Photo: Mike Ferring

This is what it looked like as the 2018 Tall Cactus Regatta began. The wind filled in nicely later, giving later starters an advantage. Photo: Mike Ferring

Post-regatta party on the scenic deck of Scorpion Bay Marina. Photo: Mike Ferring

Chase the Tall Cactus

Ready to chase the Tall Cactus? The race is Saturday, April 28, with the first boats starting at 9 am. This is a pursuit race, in the style of the Governor’s Cup, which attracted over 50 boats in December. Okay, it’s a carbon copy, except that this time everybody will find all the islands and the finish line. Or they should.

Start Times by Name rev2

The course takes you from a start line in the middle of the lake (exact position will vary depending on wind strength), north to take Horse and Balance Rock islands to port, then heading south to leave Bobcat Island to port and then finishing at Scorpion Bay Marina, where we’ll celebrate with club-provided nibbles and a cash bar. (Be sure to tip well; apparently some of you didn’t in December.)

Now, what was that about “Bobcat Island”? It’s the chunk of land that we’ve been calling “No Name Island” up to now, but Event Chairman Tom Errickson has learned it’s actually and officially called Bobcat Island. How to recognize it? It’s very hard to see until you’re right on top of it, since it blends into the hills behind. After rounding Balance Rock, if you set a course for about 150°, you’ll be pointing in the right direction. Aim to the right of the cell phone towers on the hill. You’ll need to clear the point at Two Cow Cove, near where the Sheriff’s station sits, and then head a little to the right.

The GPS coordinates are (approximately) 33°51′17″ N 112°16′50″ W or, in decimals, 33.854853 N 112.281728 W.

After Bobcat, go to Scorpion Bay Marina, round to the north of all the breakwaters and sail toward the shore. You’ll spot the finish line. Finish and then tie up and join us for adult beverages. Here’s a satellite picture of Scorpion showing the finish line.

Here are pictures showing Bobcat. The pictures were taken in early March, with high lake level.

That little island with a tuft of vegetation is Bobcat Island. Picture was taken from the Discovery Center looking north. Photo: Mike Ferring

 

Bobcat Island is hard to see, even when you’re close. It blends in with the background. Photo: Mike Ferring

 

As you begin to round Bobcat, it emerges from the background. Photo: Mike Ferring

Strong Lake Pleasant Spring Racing

Lake Pleasant threw us a mixture of light and pleasant for the final weekend of the AYC Spring Race Series. Twisty on Saturday. Midday wind switch Sunday followed by a nice breeze.

Winning fisherman for the day was Bob Naylor!

When it was all over, we can congratulate the Spring fleet winners: Catalina 22, Steve Grothe; Multi-Hull, Jim Tomes; PHRF Spin Paul Liszewski (by one point over Martin Lorch); Sport Boat, Mike Hester; Thistle, Scott Richards. The newly reconstituted PHRF Non-Spin Fleet didn’t get the expected turnout, but that didn’t stop Carl Muehlenbeck from besting Marc Danner and his all-kid crew to win the spring.

Here are all of the Spring results.

The combined fall-spring scores produced these Fleet Champions who will compete in the Club Championship race: Catalina 22, Steve Grothe; Multi-Hull, Brett Johnston; Spin, Martin Lorch; Sport Boat, Mike Hester; Thistle, Scott Richards.

Here are the Fall-Spring combined.

Okay, would this be a Blunder Bucket nomination? It’s sort of a reverse-blunder bucket or a Beneficent Bucket award winner. Bob Naylor was loading his C22 onto the trailer when he discovered the boat and trailer had snagged a nice bass! He was a little worried about not having a fishing license and was running late to see his daughter head off for her prom, so it was trailer catch and release and clearly prize-worthy.

Close leeward rounding with the Sport Boat fleet. Photo: Charles Landis

 

Skip Kempff rounds ahead of Scott Richards in the spring series. Photo: Charles Landis

Sport boats starting within inches of the committee boat. Photo: Charles Landis

May Meeting: Weather for Sailors

Consider this quote from one of the most experienced navigators in the world: “To a sailor, understanding weather is as important as boat preparation and knowing how to tack.”

John Jourdane. Photo: Sailing World

The navigator is John Jourdane and the quote introduces the book, Modern Weather for Sailors. It also introduces our May monthly meeting speaker, that same guy and the book’s author, John Jourdane.

The meeting is Tuesday, May 8, beginning at 7pm (but arrive early for dinner). Monthly meetings are held at Aces @ Rolling Hills Golf Course, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85281-1205 (map) and both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

You may remember John from his November 2013 visit, when he regaled the club with stories of his travels. He’s sailed over 300,000 miles, covering the distance between the West Coast and Hawaii 54 times, crossing the Atlantic Ocean 12 times, and sailing around the world three times, including two Whitbread Round the World Races.

How’s that for preparation for explaining (briefly) this complex subject: weather and how it affects sailors.

 

John Jourdane’s book on sailing weather.

Coming Down to the Last LP Weekend

One more weekend to go before the standings are set for the Spring Race Series.

The next-to-last started off with excellent-but-shifty—nice wind, but tricky, moving from the south to the west and various places in between. It kept the racers and race committee on their toes.

Sunday went soft. Light wind. Minimal racing.

Week 4 Results.

Blowing toward the north mark. Photos: Mike Ferring

A study in right of way, according to the RRS 2017-2020. Photos: Mike Ferring

Sean Brown and crew came in classy blue team shirts. Photos: Mike Ferring

Oops. Photos: Mike Ferring

High School Championship May 5

The High School Championship will be decided on Saturday, May 5, at Tempe Town Lake in Lasers. Here are the documents and entry form.

Notice of Race
Sailing Instructions
Entry Form

AYC Electronic Voting for Next Board Open Until May 7

If you were a voting-eligible member of the Arizona Yacht Club as of April 1, you’ve received an email allowing you to participate in the election of the next board of directors. Clicking on the link will automatically log you in to the ballot and voting takes only a minute or so.

Members may vote until Monday, May 7 at 6 pm, when electronic voting closes. Ballots will be counted at 6 pm Tuesday, May 8, at Aces at Rolling Hills, where we hold the monthly meeting.

The ballot includes this bunch: Rob Gibbs, Commodore; Marc Danner, Vice Commodore; Sharon Bell, Rear Commodore; George Sheller, Racing Fleet Captain; Heather McClain, Cruising Fleet Captain; Russ Hasty and Skip Kempff, Membership Director (two-year term); Mike Ferring, Jr Staff Commodore. Members may also write in candidates.

Bruce Andress moves to Sr Staff Commodore and Andrew Oliver will continue in the second year of his two-year term as Membership Director. The new board will elect a Secretary and Treasurer.

Rob Gibbs is a familiar face at AYC, currently Vice Commodore after replacing Mike Bernard when Mike’s health required his resignation. Rob has served as Membership Director and is serving as one of the key instructors for the Arizona Sailing Foundation. In addition to the adult Learn to Sail program and the Powerboat Safety classes, Rob teaches the Junior Performance Sailing class, which includes his son Colin.

The 2018 Junior Performance class. Rob Gibbs is the tall one on the right. Photo: Mike Ferring

Safety at Sea Seminar in San Diego June 23-24

Several of the big offshore races are stepping up requirements for Safety at Sea certifications and you’ll have a chance to take one of the two-day sessions June 23-24 at Southwestern Yacht Club in San Diego.

Here’s the link to the registration page. Here’s a flyer with more information.

Organizer John Miller offers this update on requirements:

  • CCA (Newport to Bermuda) will require all racers on all boats to have an World Sailing two-day Safety at Sea (SAS) starting in 2020.
  • Pacific Cup has dropped the one-day and is only accepting the World Sailing two-day SAS for 2018.
  • TransPac is discussing and it is assumed that they will drop the one-day and only accept the World Sailing two-day for 2019.
  • WCC (ARC series) has dropped the one-day and will only accept the two-day starting in 2017.
  • Vic-Maui has recently clarified that the two-day is the only Offshore Certification program being accepted as part of its NOR’s.

He also notes:

  • Starting in June, you can renew/refresh (prior to expiration) your current two-day by taking the Hands-on (single day) training. No longer do you need to take the full two-day course.
  • Sailors can also UPGRADE their one-day SAS (prior to expiration) to a two-day by taking the Hands-on Training Only (one day commitment).

Questions? Contact John at this email address.

Checking out safety equipment in a pool.