September was a busy month, with the Rolex Maxi Regatta in Sardinia followed by the Ibiza Joysail in Ibiza. The Maxi Worlds, as we call it, was sailed out of the YCCS in Porto Cervo. This is considered by all as the premier event of the summer in Europe, with all the best teams competing, one of the best Yacht Clubs in the world hosting it, and some of the greatest sailing waters anywhere. I was racing on the J Class Topaz against 3 other J’s in our own class. Unfortunately we had some equipment issues which hurt us in a couple races and we also did not sail our best regatta, so we will have to look to this one as a learning event mainly. No excuses, but the fact is that you should learn a great deal from your setbacks, and we intend to, and so will be making changes and taking several steps going forward into next year with Topaz.
My next event was the Ibiza Joysail Regatta. This is only the second year for the event, but it seems to be headed in a great direction. The event is positioned at the end of the European racing season, and is located next to Palma where most boats are based these days. A very competitor oriented committee ensured that smart decisions were being made on format, courses, race times, etc. I was racing on Hyperion, which is a Frers 145 that I have raced with several times before. This is a Superyacht event, not a strict Grand Prix event, and so a nice balance of racing, but with enjoyment at heart. We got the racing part down pretty well, winning every race, and that added to our enjoyment, so we think we got the balance part ok. 🙂
Next up for me is a series of season ending meetings in November with the J Class in Amsterdam where we will try to sort out our new rating system and our race schedule for the coming years. We will first try to confirm our events for 2023 and then make tentative plans for the following two years. A highlight for the class is a World Championships in 2024 that will be held in Barcelona just before, and as part of, the Americas Cup activities. We hope to have as many as 8 J’s racing at the Worlds. These J’s are replicas of Americas Cup yachts from the 1930’s, utilizing todays technology, yet preserving some of the true yachting from bygone times. They may not be the fastest boats on the water, but what they are is the most difficult boats I have ever raced, and that to me is what is so rewarding.