|As hurricane Floyd crept toward the Carolinas
early in the week, we wondered if the 1999 J-Jamboree on Lake
Winnipesaukee was going to happen. On Wednesday night the storm
hit and was whipped up the coast in the jet stream to pass through
western New England on Thursday night. Blues Power tugged on
her mooring all night but survived with no damage, as did the
eight other J/80's on the lake and Fast Company from Montreal
that rode out the storm on her trailer in Fay's parking lot.
Friday dawned rainy and WINDY. The lake had come up five
inches and the traveling J80's and J24's arrived throughout
the day. Most were happy to arrive after trailering in 40mph
winds. The boats were in and rafted up by dark which came
early in the lingering clouds and rain.
Saturday dawned bright and sunny and WINDY. Northwest in
the high 20's. Marc and Rob set out from Wolfeboro in Blues
Power for the eight mile trip, you guessed it, northwest up
to Gilford. The waves in Wolfeboro were three feet high and
less than a boatlength apart. That's why we have a six horsepower
outboard. Up in Gilford the waves were smaller, one to two
feet. The good news is that the broads belongs to the sailboats
in that kind of weather. No powerboats blasting through the
race course today.
The race commitee set it's unique "box" course
which allows the two fleets (24's and 80's) to start and finish
at random without interfering with each other. I don't think
we had more than two or three meeting situations with J24's
The breeze held strong all day and the fleet completed six
races on Saturday. The action was close and in the heavy breeze
there was a lot of opportunity to gain and lose big time.
The downwind legs were really fast. Some chose to drive almost
dead downwind while others took the high road for some exciting
high speed planes. Results were mixed. At times a boat would
run deep wing on wing w/o the spinnaker and hold it's place.
Other times the same tactic would lose four or five boats.
After racing everyone retired to the Winnipesaukee Yacht
Club to work on lightening the Budweiser Beer Wagon and eat
a great meal prepared by WYC members. After six races in big
breeze there were more than a few stories to be told.
Sunday started out with the traditional hoisting of the AP
penant. After about a half hour of that the RC took us out
on the water for a little more waiting. There was a very light
breeze blowing from the Northeast and it was not expected
to last. Excess Bandwidth and Ever the Edge engaged in a spectacular
water fight that envolved some pretty technical outboard manuevering.
They're both ready for the match racing circuit.
Finally the RC started a race. As the breeze went from little
to less we finished the race. Greg got a great start and just
extended his lead easily win. A second race was started but
abandoned as Pinocchio ghosted around the windward mark in
his own private breeze.
The last keg was empty and the boats were out by five o'clock.
Thanks to all the J-80 fleet 1 and J24 fleet 140 members who
helped with the registration, launch, haul-out, accomodation,