Feb 17, 2011, 4:03 PM
Post #3 of 3
Flip Wehrheim, runner up to John Mollicone in the 2011 US J/24 Pan Am Trials
Re: [The Publisher] 2011 J/24 Midwinters and Pan Am Trials
[In reply to]
Log-In to Post/Reply
The 2011 J 24 Pan Am Trials, were held at the Davis Island Yacht Club, in Tampa, Florida. Ten of the top J24 teams, from around the country, prepared to compete for the first place position, which would result in representing the United States, at the XVI Pan Am Games, in Guadalajara, Mexico. The sailing format was seven races, spread over two days, with light shifty winds forecasted. The format for racing the J 24, in the Pan Am Games, was slightly different than your usual J 24 regatta. Instead of a crew weight of 882 lbs, the competitors had to sail at a weight of 705 lbs. Also, the racers had to sail strictly with the blade and not the genoa, which is what they all are used to.
To no surprise, when you get 50 or so competitive sailors together, some sort of controversy will stir up, and so the subject in hand, was the rule of barber hauling the jib. Some of the competitors were set up to inhaul the jib sheet, others were not, and there were issues with the varying interpretations of the rule. After much discussion, barber hauling was not going to be allowed. Day 1, started with winds out of the southwest 3-7 kts, and shifting 50-80 degrees. The fleet saw its first race end in a 180 degree shift, what was once a downwind finish, ended in an upwind finish. Races 2, 3, and 4, all had similar conditions, being light and shifty. John Mollicone, jumped out to an early lead on the fleet the first day with a 3,4,1,1, however the regatta was not over. Day two brought more breeze, with puffs rolling off the shore. The sailors were faced with very shifty conditions, once again. When the third race of the day was over, Mollicone found himself with a 7 point lead over the fleet, and a spot in the XVI Pan Am Games. Flip Wehrheim was second and WIll Wells finished third.
A couple quick questions for Flip Wehrheim:
* How was the boat different with the Jib vs the Genoa in lighter breeze?
FLIP: I felt the boat was very under powered with out the Genny. I don't know if it was the quality of the fleet but it did seem as it evened the boats out, which made for very tight mark roundings and great racing.
* What was the most challenging aspect of this regatta?
FLIP: The start line!!!!!!! For sure.. With the line so small, and the fleet was so good, it determined whether you were gonna have a good race or not.
* Lastly Flip, besides the start, what was a key component to your strategy/ tactics for the race.
FLIP: Staying in the pressure, because Tampa is so puffy, in general, we wanted to sail in the most breeze at all times on the lifted tack. Connecting the Dark spots was a must.
Comments from Flip:
I just want to thank the Davis Island Yacht Club for putting on such a fabulous event. The conditions were quite tricky, not only to sail in, but also to set a course with and the RC did a great job! I have to congratulate John for a regatta sailed well. It was his regatta, he never really made a mistake, and that separated him from the fleet. Max Skelley, Stu McNay, and Chris Crocket were my crew and I want to thanks them for a job done great! Lastly I would like to thank North Sails. I felt we always had the best speed possible.
Full results found here: https://www.regattatech.com/scoring/action/showResultsRoster?clubCode=DIYC&eventCode=PanAms11&divisionName=J/24