2013 Nationals Summary

Brent Barbehenn recaps his 12th straight Nationals victory.  Look for a news post later this week.

LakeNorman, Perfect Wind, and A Low Country Boil

If you plan to sail in the inland regions of North Carolina during July and August, chances are the wind will be light to absent. Not the case for the 2013 Jet-14 Nationals hosted by Lake Norman Yacht Club. Situated in western North Carolina about 10 miles north of Charlotte, Lake Norman is a popular water activity/ vacation area. And located smack in the middle of it is LNYC with its 22 acres of prime waterfront property. LNYC has impressive facilities and manpower, and has hosted many national championships for other classes over the years including the 70 boat Flying Scot North Americans earlier in July.  The wind was perfect……all 4 days……7 to 15 kt from the SSW, with puffs up to 18 Thursday afternoon, and shifts from 5 to 15 degrees. And the hospitality was second to none. If you didn’t eat enough pancakes at breakfast, the dinners more than made up for it. Some of us weren’t sure what a low country boil was (Thursday’s dinner), but Regatta Co-Chairman Chris Hennon described it best: “……basically dump a pile of corn, shrimp, potatoes, and sausage on the table, and you graze at will”. Whatever you may think this looks like, it was really good! Then on Friday nite, the best BBQ in the world came out. It was estimated that 853 hushpuppies were consumed that evening. To top things off, we had one of the best PROs and support team in the country for Race Committee. Bill Ross and his team got off 15 good races in 4 days, and it was a pleasure to race on his course.

Junior and Women’s Nationals

A total of 7 boats participated in this year’s event, and both fleets were won with dominating performances. 5 races were sailed, with Barb and Ann Joudrey taking the Women’s title, and local juniors Max Thompson and William Bowden posting all bullets in the Juniors event (sailing Tim Porter’s #544). It was great to see many new faces, as the new NC fleet worked hard to get their boats ready to race and lend to club members. Margot and Natalie Sherman Jollis had so much fun sailing Chris Hennon’s #433, they decided to stick around for the open regatta.

Open Nationals

With the wind being so good on Wednesday for the Junior/Womens Nationals, we were worried it was all used up! But the next 3 days of racing were as good as lake sailing could get, with the SSW wind generally aligned with the long axis of the lake. The breeze was typically oscillating, with the left side generally paying off on Day 1, and the right side being better the last 2 days. Thursday afternoon brought the strongest breeze, with some puffs in the upper teens. No matter where one was in the fleet, the racing was close, and many times decided by a few feet at the finish. And there was some new company in the front, with Eric Johnson/Cathy Cotell (#1146), Tim and Madison Porter (#544), and Ernie Michaud/Anna Petronzio (#1136) grabbing at least 1 top 3 finish each.

After 3 days of racing, the final results were as follows:

1st Place – Team 558 aka Blue Redux, was fortunate to have LNYC junior sailor William Bowden on board. A great roll-tacker, William was full speed ahead 100% of the time, and best of all, just plain loves to sail.  William has a bright future ahead. While 558 ended up winning many races, they routinely traded places with, and were pushed to the limit by the Zaugg/Gedeon Team and Dave and Sue Michos.

2nd Place – Our esteemed Chief Measurer, past president and national champion, Marion Zaugg sailing with Jacqueline Gedeon again were “scary fast”. Race 7 saw them blow by Team 558, and keep extending the lead for the impressive win.

3rd Place – The husband/wife team of Dave and Sue Michos have been sailing together for years, and they have continually improved to the point where they are challenging for the lead in almost every race. Dave is a past president, and Sue has held various Class BOG positions over the years. Last year’s runner –up, it came down to the last day this year in the battle for 2nd with Team Zaugg/Gedeon. They won the Husband/Wife award.

4th Place – Eric Johnson and Cathy Cotell put a lot of time into getting their light air speed up to par this summer, and it appears the time was well spent. They twice led at the windward mark, and sailed to their best nationals finish. Eric is also the new Class 1st VP.

5th Place – Co-chair of the regatta, Tom Grace with Paula Pacheco quietly sailed to an impressive top 5 finish. While not on the water, one could usually find Tom and Paula hard at work in the clubhouse preparing for the next regatta activity.  Thanks for all your efforts!

Tim and Madison Porter fire around the top mark at the 2013 Jet-14 Nationals at Lake Norman, NC

Tim and Madison Porter fire around the top mark at the 2013 Jet-14 Nationals at Lake Norman, NC

6th Place – Tim Porter with daughter Madison, surprised even themselves with this nice finish. Not having sailed for about 10 years, they are starting to get things rolling again, and we look forward to seeing them at future regattas. They routinely pushed the front pack, especially in Race 4 with a 3rd place finish.  Madison won the Youngest Sailor Award. Also, the entire family, including wife Jennifer and mom Catherine, worked hard to help host the event. Tim is the District III VP.

7th Place – Barbara Joudrey with daughter Ann, lost the tie-breaker to the Porters, but nevertheless sailed an impressive regatta with all top-10 finishes (only others to do so were top 3). They also make the best cider donuts in the world…….just come to the He-Man breakfast at Mohican this October, and find out.

8th Place – Ernie Michaud and Anna Petronzio not only finished 8th, but also grabbed a 2nd place finish in Race 1, reeled off 3 straight 4s to finish out the regatta, and won the Most Improved Award, by way of improving 10 places from last year. Looks like Ernie’s purchase of #1136 this spring upgraded his speed!

9th Place – Our current Class President, Webmaster, Nationals Co-chair, and new-fleet-builder extraordinaire, Chris Hennon sailing with Meg Russell sailed to their best nationals finish. Consistency was the word, as they finished 9th overall while posting a 9th place in six different races. In fact, these 9s were all “in-a-row” (races 4 thru 9). Chris and wife Paula and daughter Olivia worked tirelessly before , during, and after the event to make it happen. Thanks for a great regatta!

10th Place – Liz Elden and Shaynah True from LNYC, borrowed #530, and sailed consistently to grab the 10th. Liz had sailed a Jet many years ago while in Ohio, and we were happy to see her get back in the boat again. They also won the Novice Trophy, for best finish for first time in Nationals.

11th Place – Seth Parker and Paolo Pacheco just missed the top 10, but may have had the most fun of all, as they were in the middle of the action both on and off the water. Seth will be the 2nd VP for the Class again this year, as well as District II VP.

12th Place – Past national champion Nicky Einthoven made the trip from NJ, and sailed with local Julia Tatiana. In bad need of a new rudder, luck was with her as she got a nice rudder blank at the auction. We look forward to seeing the finished rudder with its new fast shape next year.

13th Place – One of the new NC fleet members, Leonard Wells and Hunter Trombetta sailed a consistent series with a nice Race 5 where they came in 7th. They were only 4 points out of 11th.

14th Place – Steve Gregory and Cara Sanderson Brown made the trip from Ohio, and pushed the top 10 all week. This was Steve’s first nationals, and they showed improvement (and boat repair skills after suffering a breakdown) as the regatta progressed. Steve is an experienced sailor, especially in big boats, and Cara has been sailing most of her life, so watch out for this team as they spend more time in the boat.

15th Place –  Barry Saunders and Todd Ochoa, both professors at UNC Chapel Hill, loved sailing this regatta in their home state. Fairly new to sailing, Todd is learning fast, and we hope he sticks with it. Barry continues to improve each year, and he should be thanked for his efforts with making several boats available for others to sail.

16th Place – John Odden and Larry Vitez shook the dust off #1017 after a long absence, and impressed all with 3 top 10 finishes. Unfortunately, as is the case with old parts, they suffered a few breakdowns. Good thing they went out the day before the event, when they promptly broke a shroud!

17th Place – Stewart Fitz Gibbon and Matt Welch sailed the newest boat in the fleet (#1161), and almost pushed into the top 10 several times.  Stewart made the trip from Ohio, and is looking forward to seeing everyone again in Mansfield in October.

18th Place – David and Justin Veno are fairly new to the Class, and made the trip from NJ. It was great to get to know them, and Dave is the new District I VP.

19th Place – Another one of the boats from Asheville, NC, Bruce Sampson and Teri Fosmire won the tie-breaker over Team Corkell. Bruce kindly donated the Coke products and bottled water for the regatta. Thanks for helping out!

20Th Place – Tony and Kelsey Corkell borrowed one of Barry’s boats, and were competitive the entire regatta. They had never sailed a Jet, and we hope they will keep coming back for more!

21st Place – Margot and Natalie Sherman Jollis had so much fun sailing the Junior Nationals, they decided to keep going in the main event. They competed and finished every race, and showed great improvement as the regatta wore on.  They won the Persistence Award, and Margot won the Highest Junior Skipper Award.

A quick review of the scores shows that there were only two DNFs for the entire regatta. With 21 boats, 10 races, and at times breezy conditions, that’s quite an accomplishment, and a great indication people like to sail Jet-14s! Nice sailing to all, and again, a big THANK YOU to LNYC, Chris Hennon and Tom Grace and their team, and Bill Ross and his RC for another great Nationals.

As I drove home to NJ, I realized we were once again fortunate to enjoy another great sailing venue racing our Jet-14s.

– Brent

2013 Nationals Results: http://www.regattanetwork.com/event/6901#_newsroom+results
2013 Women/Junior Nationals: http://www.regattanetwork.com/event/7156#_newsroom+results

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