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KO Sailing MUSTO Shoe Regatta

May 19-20, 2018 at Lakewood Yacht Club

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Tight Budget? How to get the most out of your current sails

Tight Budget Image Tight Budget? How to get the most out of your current sails

Part of managing a sailing program of any kind–be it cruising or racing–is balancing the budget. From deck hardware to bottom paint and sails, something always needs replacing or fixing. Luckily when it comes to sails, there are a few inexpensive things you can do to help you extend that budget a little further.

1. GET YOUR SAILS INSPECTED

Sail inspections can bring to light not only torn stitches or tired webbing, but also use issues that may be causing damage to your sail. For example, broken stitching on the luff of the sail could indicate too much halyard tension or dimples in your spinnaker could be the result of crew pulling it down by grasping the middle of the sail instead of using the tapes.

Annual inspections should be part of every program with the goal of maximizing the life of the sail. Catching and fixing a few small problems (especially if the sail is older) can also prevent catastrophic failure on the water.

2. RECUT YOUR SAILS EVERY FEW YEARS

All sails stretch and lose shape over time and through use. If you’re experiencing the tell-tale signs of stretched sails–an inability to point, difficulty steering, or lack of power under sail–it doesn’t necessarily mean you need new sails. Many sailors don’t realize sails can be recut to bring back up to 90 percent of their original shape and extend their life at a fraction of the cost of new ones. Typically, one or two recuts can be done over the life of a sail. Recutting sails has been a common practice for pro programs for years, sometimes adjusting and recutting sails between race days.

You’ll want a handful of good sail shape photos to take to the loft along with your sail. And bonus points if you take photos of your sails on an annual basis! Click here to learn how to get the best shots and start your recordkeeping. If you’re curious about the recut process and benefits, click here for an article to shed some light on what you need to know about recuts.

3. HAVE YOUR SAILS PROFESSIONALLY REPAIRED

You might have saved the day with your quick fix when the spinnaker caught on a turnbuckle and started to rip, but did you remember to take it to the loft for a proper repair afterward? Onboard sail repairs are great when you need to finish the sail and get back to the dock safely, but they’re not meant to be a permanent fix. You’d be surprised how easy it is to forget you have a few strips of duct tape holding part of your sail together when it’s packed out of sight and out of mind. As you can guess, ignoring damage will not end well for the sail or your budget.

4. CHECK YOUR RIG TUNE

If your rig tune is out of whack, it can significantly affect sail performance. Before you throw in the towel with your current sails, check to make sure the issue isn’t your rig. Have an expert sail with you to see what adjustments might remedy the problem. This is especially important for cruisers who don’t regularly tune their rigs for conditions the way a race program might. We have more information on that here.

5. CONSIDER SAIL ADD-ONS

There are a number of sail add-ons and updates that can help improve functionality and extend their lifespan. Reefing points, UV covers, and spreader patches are all on the list. Talk to your sailmaker about what modifications can be made to help the sail work better and make it usable for a few more years.

6. LOOK BEYOND THE SAIL

It is important to look at the health and setup of your boat’s entire system in order to get the most out of your sails. Not all systems are created equally, and having the right sail handling system for your needs will help reduce stress on the sails. Roller furlers are great for easily and smoothly using your headsail, especially if you have a novice crew or sail shorthanded. Mainsail handling systems, such as the Dutchman and an in-mast or boom furling system, can also come in handy and help to reduce wear-and-tear on your sail.

Of course, the right system needs to be in good shape. If the sail handling system is failing, you’re at risk of damaging your sail. Similarly, sun-rotted lines or finicky winches pose threats to sails under load, as do sticky tracks and tired blocks. Invite your sailmaker or local rep to your boat for help identifying problem areas or to discuss options for improving your sail handling systems.

You shouldn’t give up on your trusty sails just because you’re starting to experience performance issues or they’re getting older. Call your sailmaker and explore a few of these ideas before you open your checkbook to pay for a new set. If you decide a new set is the right solution, use this information and the expertise of your sailmaker to ensure your sails are setup properly and you’re using best practices and sail care services to maximize their lifespan and protect your investment.

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Contact Quantum Sails Gulf Coast at gulfcoast@quantumsails.com or 281-474-4168 to learn more about getting the most out of your sails. You can also visit QuantumSails.com for more great tips and tricks to help you meet all of your sailing challenges.

Tall Ships Are Coming!® Tall Ships® Galveston Sets Sail For New Maritime Festival April 5-8, 2018

tall ships 1024x674 Tall Ships Are Coming!® Tall Ships® Galveston Sets Sail For New Maritime Festival April 5 8, 2018

For the first time, a fleet of tall ships will sail and race their way along the Gulf Coast to participate in the TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE® Gulf Coast 2018 series of races and public maritime festivals. Kicking off this new event, Galveston Island will play host to the first stop of the 2018 challenge from April 5-8, 2018. Produced by Galveston Historical Foundation, in partnership with Tall Ships America, this family-friendly event will showcase Galveston’s rich maritime history through unique programming and the visiting tall ships. Tickets, ship information, and special event details are available at www.tallshipsgalveston.com.

“We are pleased to welcome some of the most beautiful tall ships in the world to our port for the Tall Ship Challenge in 2018,” explains Dwayne Jones, Galveston Historical Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer. “This first-time event for the Gulf Coast will bring the world of sailing historic vessels to Galveston Island. It’s a rare opportunity to step aboard a historic tall ship and learn about our maritime history.”

While in port, the ships will be open to the public for viewing, and many will feature dockside exhibits and lively interactions with crew. Each ship has its own educational program and mission, providing the public with a wide array of ways to participate and sail. In addition to touring the ships, visitors will also have the opportunity to embark on the ships for exhibition sails during the festival. Between each of the ports, the ships will race to the next event.

TALL SHIPS® GALVESTON will welcome visiting ships with an exciting Parade of Sail down Seawall Boulevard on the afternoon of Thursday, April 5. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, the festival will be open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily for ship tours (onboard tours available from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.), live music, vendors, and more. Festival tickets are $10 admission or $20 admission + onboard tours for adults, $5 or $10 for youth ages 7-12 and free for children 6 and under. Tickets are discounted 10% through April 1, 2018.

PARTICIPATING FESTIVAL SHIPS

ELISSA (1877) – Galveston Historical Foundation brought ELISSA, an 1877 square-rigged iron barque, from a scrap yard in Piraeus Harbor, Greece to Galveston to begin restoration work in 1978. By 1982, GHF staff and volunteers completed restoration and transformed this rare, historic vessel into a floating museum that would actively sail. Today, ELISSA is one of only three ships of her kind in the world to still actively sail and welcomes over 40,000 visitors annually. She also serves as the Official Tall Ship of Texas, a National Historic Landmark and a symbol of the Gulf Coast’s historic beginnings as a sea port and active waterfront.

LYNX (2001) – In 1997 Woodson K. Woods embarked on a journey to build a privateer inspired by the original historic tall ship from the War of 1812 – The Privateer Lynx. His goal was to create a living history museum to educate children and adults alike about American history through active sail training aboard a real wooden sailing ship. What went into Lynx was not just wood, rope, brass and canvas, it was something that goes far beyond history, ambition, inspiration, determination, and commitment. On July 28, 2001, in Rockport, Maine, Woods’ vision was realized. Past and present converged as Lynx was launched in a gala event ordaining a magnificent future on the high seas. The creation of Lynx embraces eternal truths: passion, sacrifice, perseverance, honor, and courage. Please note LYNX will be operating as a sail away vessel and not available for general tours.

OLIVER HAZARD PERRY (2015) – SSV OLIVER HAZARD PERRY is the largest civilian Sailing School Vessel in the United States and the first ocean-going full-rigged ship to be built in the U.S. in over 100 years. The ship is named for US Navy Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry. Perry led the first US naval victory over the British in the Battle of Lake Erie; War of 1812. Based out of Fort Adams, Newport Rhode Island, the ship features educational programs focused on growth with leadership development opportunities for students of all ages. Programming includes team building in the form of practical sail training as well as customizable leadership workshops. OLIVER HAZARD PERRY is 200 ft. in length with 7 miles of rope, 160 belaying pins, and 20 sails.

OOSTERSCHELDE (1918) – The three-masted topsail schooner OOSTERSCHELDE was built in 1918 as a sail-powered freighter. The vessel plied the European waters and was regularly seen off the coast of Morocco and on the Mediterranean Sea. In 1930 heavier and modern diesel engines were placed, and the rigging was reduced. From 1939 the vessel sailed under foreign flags and underwent a drastic conversion in 1950 into a modern coaster. In 1988, the OOSTERSCHELDE was brought back to the Netherlands. The Rotterdam Sailing Ship Foundation took charge of the fundraising necessary for the financing of the restoration of the vessel to its authentic condition. The OOSTERSCHELDE is now the only remaining representative of a large fleet op topsail schooners that used to sail under the Dutch flag at the beginning of the previous century. She is registered as a monument by the Dutch Ministry of Culture.

PICTON CASTLE (1928) – The PICTON CASTLE is registered in the Cook Islands, in the South Pacific, and is owned and operated by the Windward Isles Sailing Ship Company, Ltd. The ship’s mission is deep-ocean sail training and long-distance education. Her North American homeport is Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. The ship is a completely refitted barque that observes the rigorous standards of Germanischer Lloyds for steel-hulled Cape Horners. She is 179 feet overall, with a riveted steel hull, clear oiled-pine decks, steel masts, wooden and steel yards, and carries 12,450 square feet of canvas sail. The PICTON CASTLE is a true working tall ship. Sail trainees participate fully in the ship’s operation: handling sails, scrubbing the deck, taking a turn at the wheel, raising anchor, hauling on lines, helping in the galley, going aloft, and keeping lookout.

WHEN AND IF (1939) – When General George S. Patton commissioned one of America’s greatest designers to conceive him a boat to be built by F.F Pendleton of Wiscasset, Maine in 1939, he had the ultimate ambition in mind: When the war is over, and If I live through it, Bea and I are going to sail her around the world.” WHEN AND IF was a new idea: a yacht which would maintain all her classic beauty and hold her own in recreational racing while being sturdy, comfortable, safe and luxurious enough to take a family on the voyage of a lifetime. Early in 2012 Doug Hazlitt, well known in yachting circles, purchased the WHEN AND IF with plans to return the vessel to its original and Bristol condition. Following an extensive two year restoration, she is back in all her glory and ready for you to come and sail her away! Please note WHEN AND IF will be operating as a sail away vessel and not available for general tours.

SAIL AWAY EXCURSIONS

Ready to feel the wind in your face on open water? Guests to the 2018 TALL SHIPS® GALVESTON will be able to do more than just walk across the decks of visiting ships! A select group of participating ships will be available as sail away vessels. The Privateer LYNX and WHEN AND IF will both offer special sail tours through Galveston Bay throughout each day of the festival. Pricing and times for Parade of Sail, Daysail, and Twilight Tours are available online.

SPECIAL EVENTS & PACKAGES

In addition to the festival, special events will be featured daily, giving guests unique opportunities to tour and interact with the visiting ships.

SALUTE TO SUNSET PARTY – Toast the ending of the day and beginning of the evening with tickets to our special Salute to Sunset party. Ticket holders will enjoy access to tour one of the participating tall ships after daytime tours conclude, complimentary craft beer, light hor d’oeuvres, and an unmatched setting at the Texas Seaport Museum. Tickets are $50 per person, do not include festival admission, are only good for the day of purchase and are available online.

CAPTAIN’S TABLE PLANKOWNER’S DINNER – Your presence is requested for an evening of drinks, food and more at our exclusive Captain’s Table night. Enjoy dining with the captains of our festival Tall Ships, live music, an exciting live auction featuring original works of art from regional artists, private access onboard one of our visiting Tall Ships, open bar and much more. Tickets are $250 per person and available online. Proceeds from this event go directly towards Galveston Historical Foundation’s 1877 Tall Ship ELISSA, the official Tall Ship of Texas. ELISSA will be sailing from Galveston to Pensacola and New Orleans as part of the 2018 TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE® as the Texas Gulf coast’s ambassador. Attire is nautical chic, and your reservations also include a Saturday pass for admission to the festival and onboard the ships during the day.

VIP FESTIVAL PACKAGES – The TALL SHIPS® GALVESTON VIP package is your best way to make sure you don’t miss any of the weekend’s incredible opportunities. Located on the festival grounds and steps away from the pier and our visiting ships, this package includes everything you need to make your weekend unforgettable! This package includes accommodations at the Harbor House Hotel & Marina at Pier 21 (two-night minimum required), daily festival admission and onboard tour tickets, two tickets to the Salute to Sunset party and complimentary parking. VIP tickets start at $800 for two and are available online.

ABOUT TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE®

Tall Ships America’s TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE® is an annual series of Tall Ships® races and maritime port festivals that rotates on a three-year cycle between the Atlantic Coast, Great Lakes, Pacific Coast, and Gulf Coast. These events celebrate our rich maritime heritage and traditions, and inform the general public about the transformative power of Adventure and Education Under Sail®.

Coordinated by Tall Ships America in collaboration with local organizers, the TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE® fleet will be hosted at festivals in four ports of call: Galveston, Texas (April 5-8), Pensacola, Florida (April 12-15), New Orleans, Louisiana (April 19-22), and St. Petersburg, Florida (April 26-29).

“The member vessels of Tall Ships America help young people develop confidence, competency, and courage through the authentic challenges and adventures of seafaring,” said Tall Ships America Executive Director Bert Rogers. “The TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE® series is a celebration of our maritime heritage.”

“Students and trainees will sail the ships the same way they were sailed in great Age of Sail” added Rogers. “These races follow long-distance courses on the open ocean; the ships sail without using engines, all to promote goodwill through friendly competition.”

For more information about Tall Ships America or to learn how to sign aboard a tall ship, visit www.tallshipsamerica.org or contact Lori Aguiar at lori@tallshipsamerica.org or 401-846- 1775.

ABOUT TALL SHIPS AMERICA

Tall Ships America is the hub for tall ships activity, expertise, and information in North America, and is commended by the United States Congress as the national sail training organization representing the United States. Founded in 1973, Tall Ships America is a 501c3 non-profit membership organization dedicated to enriching youth education through character building and leadership programs aboard tall ships. The mission of Tall Ships America is to encourage character building through sail training, promote sail training to the North American public and support education under sail.

Tall Ships America supports the people, ships and programs of sail training through professional development grants, sail training scholarships, conferences, education, publications, regulatory and licensing information, public events and advocacy.

ABOUT GALVESTON HISTORICAL FOUNDATION

Galveston Historical Foundation (GHF) was formed as the Galveston Historical Society in 1871 and merged with a new organization formed in 1954 as a non-profit entity devoted to historic preservation and history in Galveston County. Over the last sixty years, GHF has expanded its mission to encompass community redevelopment, historic preservation advocacy, maritime preservation, coastal resiliency and stewardship of historic properties. GHF embraces a broader vision of history and architecture that encompasses advancements in environmental and natural sciences and their intersection with historic buildings and coastal life, and conceives of history as an engaging story of individual lives and experiences on Galveston Island from the 19th century to the present day.

For more information, please contact Will Wright, Director of Communications and Special Events at 409-765- 3404 or will.wright@galvestonhistory.org.

Calling all Women Sailors: Celebrating 31 years of Windward Bound Sailing Camp June 6-9, 2018

WSA Team O BY ED MATUSZAK 1024x636 Calling all Women Sailors: Celebrating 31 years of Windward Bound Sailing Camp June 6 9, 2018

The Houston Yacht Club’s Women’s Sailing Association is now accepting applications for their 2018 Windward Bound Sailing Camp for Women, which will be held June 6-9 at the Houston Yacht Club. The overnight camp is open to all women who are 21 years or older.

Windward Bound Sailing Camp is a great opportunity to learn, expand, or enhance your knowledge and skills in sailing. This camp is the only program of its kind on the bay. It is all about women teaching women how to sail in a fun, friendly, and safe environment. The camp will help you gain new confidence, new skills, and new friends; and is for those new to sailing, those who are familiar with the sport but want to expand their knowledge and skills, and for the experienced sailor who wants to race competitively.

The format of the camp is residential, concentrated, and objective-oriented and features small group instruction with individualized attention. The counselors are accomplished women sailors with years of experience in cruising, racing and teaching other women to sail.

The camp is broken down into four categories to include:

Waves (Beginners): Great for first-time sailors or those of you that need a refresher on the basics! We will focus on terminology, rigging, boat handling skills, sailing theory, and becoming comfortable and confident on the water. Our enthusiastic instructors guide sailors through hands on lessons and adventures making time on the water enjoyable and safe.

Flamingos (Intermediate): After mastering the basics of sailing, our Flamingo group will continue to sharpen their rigging, boat handling and terminology skills. In addition to becoming more comfortable with your beginner knowledge, you will also be introduced to detailed lessons on wind and waves and how they relate to your boat. Intermediate sailing is taught with a greater emphasis on the sailor’s self-reliance; we expect that once the course is completed, the sailor can rig, launch, sail out and back, without assistance and with confidence and efficiency.

Nautigirls (Advanced): Experienced sailors will learn to sharpen their sailing skills. Lesson will be given on fine tuning a boat for speed, skippering, spinnakers, and racing. This group of sailors will perform drills that will enhance their understanding of boat speed and small boat racing.

Mermaids (Big Boat): Sailors in this group will discover all things related to big boats! We will teach the basics of sailing but will also cover details of crewing on or owning a large boat (30+ feet) – everything from working the head to steering with a wheel versus a tiller and maneuvering in and out of the dock. All skill levels are welcome.

Camp Registration

Open to HYC members and non-members but numbers are limited. Registration deadline is May 1, 2018.

Camp Costs:

The cost for camp is $500 for HYC members and $650 for non-HYC members. Camp costs cover room and board, camp shirt, instruction, boat usage and banquet.

Experience the freedom and camaraderie of women’s sailing. For more information, contact one of our co-directors: Joanne Humphries, humphriesjc@hotmail.com or Martha Gillett at fifimg2@gmail.com. You may also contact the HYC office at 281-471- 1255. To download the Windward Bound Camp application, please visit us online at http://houstonyachtclub.com/Portals/0/News/wwb_app_18.pdf.

 

1st Annual Ladies’ Night at West Marine Rig Shop

judy mission WM 1st Annual Ladies’ Night at West Marine Rig Shop

Kemah West Marine’s check presented to Judy’s Mission.

West Marine in Kemah hosted Ladies’ Night in the Rig Shop, and a benefit for Judy’s Mission Ovarian Cancer Foundation on Thursday, Nov. 9. It was an evening filled with education, fund-raising and good times to empower women to be confident boaters, to connect ladies with a shared passion of being on the water and to educate them (along with their first officers who attended) about early symptoms of ovarian cancer.

Judy’s Mission Ovarian Cancer Foundation was created in 2010 to honor Judith (Judy) Liebenthal Robinson, Ph.D., a NASA scientist and avid sailor at Lakewood Yacht Club. Despite habitual exercise, a consistently healthy diet, and regular medical examinations, Judy was diagnosed with advanced stage ovarian cancer and died within a year. While battling ovarian cancer, it was Judy’s mission to raise awareness about the vague symptoms and ineffective screening procedures associated with ovarian cancer. She inspired all who knew her; and as a result, friends (many from Lakewood Yacht Club) came together to create the Judy’s Mission Ovarian Cancer Foundation a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

Along with lots of food, and spirits provided by cosponsor Railean Distillery of San Leon, West Marine Rigging associates Suzanne Kutach and Randi Miller taught knot tying and dock-line instruction, while Rigging associate Josh Gray (with his wife Angie) spiced up the evening in ‘Pirate’ regalia.

rigging table 1st Annual Ladies’ Night at West Marine Rig Shop

Knot tying and dock line instruction at the rigging table.

With ‘Rigging Solutions’ donated by the West Marine Rig Shop (Tide-Minder Soft Shackles, Dyneema Cleat- Extender Loops and Shackles, and Sailboat Rigging Inspections), as well as donations from the 2017 Harvest Moon Regatta, $1,255 was raised in silent auction for Judy’s Mission Ovarian Cancer Foundation.

“Although Ladies’ Night was our first event of its kind,” said West Marine Rig Shop Manager Franklin Viola, “The overwhelming enthusiasm and support by local lady sailors will certainly not make it the last!”

HYC Youth Sailor Brings Home the Gold from China

Charlotte Rose HYC Youth Sailor Brings Home the Gold from China

Charlotte Rose – Sanya, China. Photo by Thomas Miya/Sailing Energy.

Houston Yacht Club’s Youth Sailor and US Youth World Champion, Charlotte Rose, recently returned from Sanya, China where she won the Gold Medal in the Youth World Championship competing against 374 of the world’s best youth sailors from 60 nations.

Rose raced against defending champions, Dolores Moreira Fraschini, (URU and the 2017 Youth Radial World Champion, Hannah Anderssohn (GER), pulling out to dominate the 40-boat competition.

“After a tough week of racing the fact I am a World Champion has still not set in. I find myself still astounded by my achievement even with all the best wishes and recognition I have received,” Rose said.

“It was a tough last race to win gold but I did it. I knew what I needed to do and I did it. I am especially grateful for my coaches, Rosie Chapman and Leandro Spina of US Sailing, for believing in me. I am very grateful for HYC for their positive thoughts and support from afar. The utmost thanks goes to my family who have and always believed in me and supported my dream I cannot thank them enough, they earned this gold medal too,” Rose added.

Rose earned her spot in the World Championships as the only single-handed sailor on the US Youth World Team through hard work, determination and finishing at the top in the most competitive national regattas during 2017.

Rose is a senior attending Westside High School in Houston. She has sailed in a wide variety of national and international sailing competitions including representing the USA in the International Laser Radial Youth Worlds competition in Canada, where she placed 3rd in the Under 17 category.

To learn more about the Houston Yacht Club, please visit: www.houstonyachtclub.com

Harvest Moon Regatta Donates to Port Aransas Hurricane Harvey Recovery

Members of Lakewood Yacht Club and the Bay Access Foundation presented a check for $22,638 to the Port Aransas Education Fund, and the Seabrook Rotary Club presented its own check for $2,000 on November 7, 2017.

Port Aransas sustained considerable damage during Hurricane Harvey including the destruction of the new basketball court in the high school gymnasium. The Port Aransas High basketball teams were on hand to accept the check as the funds will be used to pay for a portable gym in the Port Aransas Civic Center until their school’s gym can be repaired.

“Port A has been a gracious host to the finish and post-race festivities of our Annual Harvest Moon Regatta for many years,” said LYC Commodore Jim Winton. “As soon as we heard of the devastation in Port Aransas, we gathered our resources and started thinking of ways to help. The Lakewood community is very pleased to have worked with HMR race organizers and volunteers to raise this contribution through various raffles and our Hurricane Harvey/Port A Recovery Fund.”

If you’d like to learn more about the Harvest Moon Regatta, visit www.harvestmoonregatta.com. Information about the Bay Access Foundation can be found at www.bay-access.org.
unnamed1 Harvest Moon Regatta Donates to Port Aransas Hurricane Harvey Recovery

Check Presentation: Photo provided by Port Aransas South Jetty Reporter Zach Perkins

Sea Star Base Koch Cup Awards

Sea Star Base Galveston recently hosted the 9th Biennial William I. Koch International Sea Scout Cup Regional Regatta Trial, “Aggie Cup”,  Saturday, September 23, on Offatt’s Bayou, 7409 Broadway.

The oldest continuing qualifier for the Koch Cup, the regatta is open to any Sea Scout Crew in a Southern Region Ship, and is one of four races held in Scouting’s Southern Region. Qualifiers from the regatta will compete in the William I Koch International Sea Scout Cup to be held at Sea Star Base Galveston in 2018. Regatta Director is Skipper Dan Wilson, Commodore of Sam Houston Are Council that includes Houston and the surrounding 16 counties.

Admission to the race was open to all Southern Region  and is governed by the ISAF Racing Rules of Sailing 2017 – 2020, Boy Scouts of America Guide to Safe Scouting, posted Aggie Cup sailing instructions and the Official Notice of Racing, the regatta is a Sea Scouts, BSA event. Sailors  compete on  FJ’s, or Flying Junior, which are popularly used to teach young sailors the skills of boat handling and racing.

At the conclusion of the races, following the protest and penalty review, winners were announced as follows:

  • 1st place:  Ship 1000, Andrew Vandling  and Isaac Barkely
  • 2nd place: Ship 45, Ryan Shaw and Kaytlynn Welsch
  • 3rd place: Ship 846, Zander Sexton and Simon Sexton
  • 4th place: Ship 45, Jonathan Franks and Bo Steber
  • 5th place: Ship 45, Esteban Garcia and Amber Steber

Sea Star Base Galveston is a high-adventure aquatic destination offering marine and maritime education programs that foster teamwork, skills, lifetime leadership, and independence in body, mind, and spirit. The Base offers sailing and educational programs for youth, adults, and physically challenged individuals.

For information on upcoming regattas or SSBG Community Sailing programs go to www.ssbgalveston.org or call (409) 572-2560.

IMG 9119 1024x683 Sea Star Base Koch Cup Awards

Koch Cup Regatta Trials, 1st place – L – R: Dan Wilson, Commodore of San Houston Area Council, Andrew Vandling and Isaac Barkely

IMG 9117 1024x683 Sea Star Base Koch Cup Awards

Koch Cup Regatta Trials, 2nd place – L – R: Kaitlynn Welsch, Commodore Dan Wilson, and Ryan Shaw

Koch Cup Regatta Trials, 3rd place – L – R: Zander Sexton, Dan Wilson, and Simon Sexton

Koch Cup Regatta Trials, 4th place – L – R: Jonathan Franks, Bo Steber, and Skipper Dan Wilson

Lakewood Yacht Club Hosted J/105 North American Championships

unnamed 300x200 Lakewood Yacht Club Hosted J/105 North American Championships

Day Two of J/105 North American Championships by LYC member Kim Payton.

Last week, 22 J/105s representing clubs from across North America, Bermuda and beyond raced on Galveston Bay to determine the 2017 North American Champion.

Lakewood Yacht Club also hosted the first J/105, Fleet 17 Fall Invitation Regatta last month to help local boats prepare for the North American Championships. Hosting the invitational must have paid off; three local racers took the top three spots.

The top five finishers were:

1st – Mojo, Steve Ryhne of LYC

2nd – Deja Voodoo, Bill Zartler of LYC

3rd – Radiance, Bill Lakenmacher of LYC

4th – Sanity, Rick Goebel of San Diego Yacht Club

5th – Good Trade, Bruce Stone of St. Francis Yacht Club

Complete race results can be found at www.j105nac.com

Sailors, volunteers and guests gathered in the LYC Ballroom for cocktails, dinner and dancing on Saturday, Oct. 28th. Live entertainment was provided by The Anchormen. The Awards Ceremony was held in the LYC Lounge on Sunday.

John Barnett, Chairman of J/105 North Americans, commented on the support staff and sponsors. “We could not have pulled this event off without the help of all our dedicated volunteers and generous sponsors.”

Sponsors for this event included City of Seabrook, Bay Access, Upstream Brokers, Seabrook Marina, nue Vodka, Layline Petroleum, Leeward Yacht Club, Hayes Rigging, Davis Marine & Electronics, J/Boats Southwest, George Ocean Rum, Blackburn Marine, OJ’s Marine, Quantum Sails, YES Marine, UK Sails, Calamity Gin, Little Yacht Sails, True North Marine, JR Ewing Bourbon.

Visit www.j105nac.com for details. Or, for more information about J/105 Fleet 17, contact John Barnett at J22B@comcast.net or 281 414 4010.

2017 A-Class North Americans

cat A 2017 A Class North Americans

By Bruce Mahoney

The 50th Anniversary of the A-Class North American Championship was held in San Diego Bay on Oct. 5-8. Hosted by San Diego Yacht Club, the event was held on the Silver Strand State Beach which is halfway down Coronado Island. The sailing area was well protected with flat water and great racing conditions for the Classics and Foilers alike.

San Diego is a long way from the larger East Coast fleets in the US, but the A Catters saddled up and headed west to support the Californians. We had 32 boats racing from all over, including Mischa and Eduard from the Netherlands, Larry Woods from the Toronto area, a container load from New Jersey, a 6 boat trailer from Atlanta, and many smaller rigs coming from Florida, Louisiana, Texas and all over.

Ben Hall a.k.a. “The Admiral” drove 2,500 miles with Bill Vining from Tampa, Florida to get three boats from the Sopot Worlds there just in time, and he wasn’t even sailing! It was another good example of the quality of people in the A Class.

Due to the flooding in Houston from Hurricane Harvey, there was a fair bit of debris in the water at home. My training partner Benn Hooper and I decided to head out early to sail in San Diego to keep the boats in one piece. We drove 24 hours straight through and sailed for 6 days prior to the event. Mischa joined us and we spent a lot of time on setup and techniques to maximize our performance, with Benn in the Classic as a good benchmark.

Ben was on his recently modified Classic LR5 with the long leech version of Mischa’s Decksweeper, while Mischa and I pushed the F1’s with a smaller head design. It was a bit of a gamble in the short term as San Diego is not thought of as a windy venue, and conventional wisdom pointed to light airs being the Achilles heel of a small headed sail. It was great testing though and the new sails performed well across the range.

As always when I get the opportunity to train early with good people before a championship, I could pack up and go home the night before the regatta and be perfectly happy, as I find it really satisfying to learn so much and progress in how to sail these amazing boats.

After some good battles with Mischa and Matt, I was fortunate enough to come away as North American Champion…

We pulled off the regatta with Foiling conditions throughout, except for small sections of a leg or two. The breeze was on average 7-12 knots, some less and more on the last day. There was only a bit of short chop on the last day near the bottom when the breeze was up in the mid-teens. The pressure was always changing just a little bit throughout the trip, so you really had to stay on your toes with the mode and setting changes. Often times you weren’t in exactly the ‘perfect’ setting, so learning to keep the boat ripping while managing that aspect was a big part of the regatta.

The SDYC Race Committee did a great job getting off 11 good races over four days. They kept us apprised of their intentions and were great with communication, which we all appreciate.

The battle for the Classics division was never over, with a different leader at the end of each day. Craig Yandow came out on top, and there were a lot of tight finishes across the line throughout the week. Great to see some new energy in that group and I believe the US will send a good Classic contingent to Australia for the Worlds.

Matt Struble sailed a solid event in the eXploder I used in Poland, and thank you again to Emmanuel Cerf from eXploder USA for helping me at the Worlds and Matt here at the NA’s. Emmanuel is a great promoter of the class, and motivates our sailors to get to our events. He is the man behind the 2020 Worlds in St. Petersburg, Florida. Be sure to put that on your long term planning, as it will be truly first class.

Mischa won the event as Open Champion, with his blazing speed and complete command of the boat. It was great to have another fun mission with him, and we hope in the future to have more international competitors here to raise the level even higher. The perpetual trophy for the Open Champion has gone missing (if you have it, send it back…), so the Regatta Organizers did a cool thing with a Multihull Elapsed Time Trophy that they award each year. By their reckoning, having won 9 of 11 races means Mischa completed the regatta in the lowest elapsed time, so his name is now on the trophy with ORMA 60’s and other offshore Multihulls.

After some good battles with Mischa and Matt, I was fortunate enough to come away as North American Champion, and looking at the trophy my 2 wins pale in comparison to the multiple winners over the 50 year history of the class in the US. The trophy has the winning skipper and boat type which we will post shortly on our US Class website. Apparently even Hurricane Andrew has a victory in 1992, but no boat type was listed. It’s pretty cool to think for half a century A Cat sailors have been throwing boats on trailers and traveling around the country for the fun of it. I’m happy to be one of them.

The 2018 North Americans will be at the Sandy Hook Bay Catamaran Club in New Jersey. The club is just across the water from New York City and has hosted the Atlantic Coast Championships the past few years. It should be a great event. From there the US Fleet will be loading containers to head down under to Hervey Bay for the 2018 Worlds. Come and join us!

Houston Yacht Club Plans Annual Turkey Day Regatta

hyc Houston Yacht Club Plans Annual Turkey Day RegattaRegistration is now open to race in the annual Houston Yacht Club Turkey Day Regatta  Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 18-19.   The regatta is open to all boats and classes for racing Windward-Leeward or Pursuit.  Prizes are turkeys.  The number will be based on the number of registrants per class. Our annual “Grog” party will follow racing on Saturday.

As part of the Competitors’ Briefing on Friday, Nov. 17, all racers are invited to attend a presentation by HYC Member and Laser Radial Youth Women’s World Champion, Charlotte Rose, who will share her on-the-water racing experiences and upcoming 2017 Youth Sailing World Championship in China later this year.  She has been nominated for the 2017 Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year.

The awards ceremony on Sunday, Nov. 20 will feature our chef serving up turkey and trimmings for the racers at the trophy presentation.

See the HYC Web Site for the Notice of Race for the schedule of events.  Boats may enter the Regatta through Regatta Network.

For further information, contact Event Chairmen James Liston jtliston@aol.com or Madonna Breen mbreen@embarqmail.com.

8th Annual J/Fest Southwest Regatta in the Record Books

 

unnamed1 225x300 8th Annual J/Fest Southwest Regatta in the Record Books

A J/Boats Legends Celebrity Racing Event was held on Clear Lake on Friday, October 20th in celebration of 40 years of J/Boats. Photo by LYC member Andrea Todaro.

Lakewood Yacht Club hosted the 8th Annual J/Fest Southwest Regatta October 21-22, 2017.

Although the competitors were held onshore Sunday due to storms, the race committee ran a full day of racing on Saturday for 72 boats in a building breeze. The Judges had work to do on the water and onshore; after all was done, this year’s top finishers in each class were:

J/22 Hayes Rigging, Kevin Hayes, of LYC

J/24 Miss Conduct, James Freedman of DCYC

J/70 Hoss, Glenn Darden of FWBC

J/105 Sanity, Rick Goebel of SDYC/CRA

J/109 Hamburg, Al Goethe of LYC

J/PHRF Spin (Sym) Press to Meco, Glen Stromme

J/PHRF Spin (Asym) Second Star, JD Hill of LYC/GBCA

Full results are available at www.lakewoodyachtclub.com.

This year’s festivities also included a celebrity racing event on Clear Lake that spectators enjoyed watching and listening to humorous live commentary on from the newly opened BARge 295 in the location of the old Turtle Club. On Friday, Oct. 20, at 1600, J/Boat legend racers Jeff Johnstone, Scott Young, Farley Fontenot and Jay Lutz set off to measure their racing prowess on loaned-out J/24s in honor of J/Boats celebrating 40 years in the making.

Sailors, volunteers and guests enjoyed the annual Saturday night party, which included live music poolside by Jerry Angeley and by the LC Roots Band in the LYC lounge as well as a Frogmore Stew traditional shrimp dinner in the grand ballroom.

The LYC bar and lounge were at full capacity for the awards ceremony Sunday afternoon.

For regatta information or questions about next year’s event, visit www.jfestsouthwest.com.

What’s in a Sail Check?

sailcheck header What’s in a Sail Check?By Quantum Sails

Your sails are an investment and with proper care, you can expect years of satisfaction and enjoyment. Quantum’s Global Director of Client Care Charles Saville describes what our professionals look for during a multipoint inspection.

Annual inspections and sail care not only maintain sail performance, but also help extend the lifespan of your sails and eliminate potential disasters. Getting into the habit of getting a sail check-over every year is the first line of defense against small problems turning into bigger, more costly issues later on.

To provide the highest level of sail care, we believe it’s not enough to simply identify the needed repairs. Our service technicians are trained not only in the painstaking process of inspecting a sail, but also collecting additional information to help identify the source of the problem. Making the repair is a good start; helping you address the root cause is even better. Reducing future repair costs and downtime is the ultimate solution and an example of how Quantum’s service team goes above and beyond to provide exemplary service.

So what exactly goes into a Quantum sail check?

  • Inspect all attachment points of the sail. Take a close look at corner attachment points, luff tapes, luff hardware and reefing systems. Investigate any chafe or damage at these points, and evaluate suitability for use.
  • Look over all edges of the sail. So much can be gained in understanding the life of a sail by examining its leech, which can provide insight into any stretching or misshaping, or potential UV damage. We inspect the entire perimeter to gain a better understanding of the sail’s history, which in turn helps shape our recommendations for repair or upgrade.
  • Evaluate entire sail for chafe, tears and damage, including not only the main section but also batten pockets, leech reinforcements, etc. We look to see if there’s a pattern to the chafe, evaluate why it’s happening, and not only fix the sail, but also advise you how to prevent the damage in the future.
  • Assess entire sail for UV damage. Some exposure is normal, so our trained technicians understand when exposure has developed into a larger problem.
  • Examine all accessories on the sail for proper function and continued use, including draft stripes, Dutchman Systems, batten pocket tensioning systems, control-line pockets and cleats, etc. If it’s on the sail, we’re going to inspect it.
  • Evaluate the cloth. We look at where the sail is in its lifespan, evaluating how the lamination is withstanding use. By judging how the material is holding up versus the age of the sail, we can give you a better understanding of its remaining useful life.

The best way to ensure you get the longest life out of your sails is to have them checked annually for the above criteria. When problems are identified early, there’s a higher chance that our sail experts can make the necessary adjustments and repairs to prolong the use of that sail.

Sail checks can also indicate other potential rigging or tuning issues based on evidence of wear. A simple annual sail check can save you money by avoiding replacing sails more often than necessary, and ensure you don’t lose valuable time on the water waiting for replacement sails.

Are you due for a sail check? Contact Quantum Sails Gulf Coast at 281-474- 4168 or gulfcoast@quantumsails.com to schedule an inspection at Quantum’s Seabrook location now.

Houston Open One Design Regatta

 

2016 HOOD Regatta Photo Houston Open One Design Regatta

image003 Houston Open One Design RegattaAt the Houston Yacht Club Sept. 23-24

All one design sailors mark your calendars for the HOOD Regatta. The Houston Open One Design Regatta is Sept. 23-24 at the Houston Yacht Club. Our sponsors for the 2017 event are Mount Gay Rum, Quantum Sails, Dripping Springs Vodka, Bloody Revolutions, KO Sailing, City of LaPorte and West Marine. We are expecting as many as 100 boats and 350 sailors to participate. Classes anticipated to sail are J22, J24, J29, J70, J80, J105, J109, Pulse 600, RS Aero, and Ensign. There will be a youth line, as well. The racing will take place on three race courses on Galveston Bay.

The Skipper’s meeting will be held Friday night, with racing on Saturday and Sunday. Awards will be given out on Sunday afternoon. Each boat registered will receive a skipper’s pouch from Quantum Sails and a tech shirt. This will be the largest regatta on Galveston Bay this year, so please don’t miss it.

Check the HYC website, www.houstonyachtclub.com or regattanetwork.com for the Notice of Race and registration information. For more information, contact regatta chairs Ken Humphries at k.humphries@humphries-const.com or Joanne Humphries at humphriesj@hotmail.com.

10 Things You Can Do to Make Your Sails Last Longer

sailcare 10 Things You Can Do to Make Your Sails Last Longer

By Quantum Sails

1.  KEEP YOUR SAIL OUT OF THE SUN WHEN NOT IN USE.

If you have furling systems, this may be just a matter of furling sails when not in use. For non-furling sails, this means covering or stowing sails. There are cover options for both mainsails and headsails, allowing the sail to stay rigged and protected between uses. When no cover is available, sails should be removed, flaked, bagged and stowed below deck or off the boat.

2. SUN COVERS: SEWN-ON PROTECTION. 

Most owners use sewn-on sun covers to protect furled sails. Sunbrella and WeatherMax are the fabrics commonly used for sun covers. For racer-cruisers and some racing sails like furling code zeros, there are lighter weight options such as UV-treated Dacron®. While there is a gain in weight savings, these materials are not inherently UV resistant. Over time the UV treatment can wear off, with the lifespan of the treatment affected by boat location and amount of time in the sun. In high exposure areas, treated covers may have a lifespan of only a couple of seasons.

All sun covers should be inspected regularly and repaired if damaged. Generally speaking, covers should be re-stitched every three years or so to prevent more extensive damage to the fabric that can occur from flogging due to compromised stitching.

To provide maximum protection for your sails, sun covers require care and maintenance. Remember, if you can see the sailcloth below the cover…so can the sun! Click here to read more about keeping your sails safe from UV rays.

3.  KEEP YOUR SAILS CLEAN.

After sun, the second-worst enemy of any sail is salt; but other types of dirt and debris can be just as damaging. Periodic sail washing is key to maintaining your sails. A couple common-sense rules apply to frequency: 1) a sail that has been exposed to saltwater should be washed sooner rather than later, and 2) all other varying degrees of grime should be removed when possible. A genoa or staysail probably needs washing, or at least a rinse, more frequently than a mainsail that is stowed under a cover on the boom or furled when not in use. Not sure if your sails are salty? Run a finger along the foot and have a taste…you’ll know right away!

4.  HIDE THEM FROM THE ELEMENTS.

Sailmakers generally refer to the life of a sail in hours or seasons, rather than years. The lifespan is affected by the amount of time sailing and the level of care given to the sails. In the mid-Atlantic region, the main sailing season can begin in early spring and extend late into the fall. A sailing season in the upper Midwest, for example, is much shorter, thus extending the life of a sail. The lifespan of sails that spend the sailing season furled on your headstay, in your mast or boom, or left on the boat to endure the frigid months of winter, will be much shorter than the life of sails that are properly protected or stowed.

If you know your sails are going to be sitting idle on the boat in a marina for at least a month or more during a sailing season, you can extend sail life by taking the sails off of your boat and stowing them. If your schedule prevents you from doing this personally, contact your local Quantum loft for sail removal and storage – part of our full array of sail care services.

5.  INSPECT YOUR SAILS REGULARLY AND HAVE AN EXPERT DO SO, TOO.

At least once-a-year sails should get a check-up. To do this yourself, find a dry place in good light where you can lay them flat, then work your way over every inch of the sail, looking for trouble spots such as abrasion or loose stitching. Small problems can turn into bigger problems later, so be sure to note even the smallest details. Alternatively, you can drop off your sails at a nearby Quantum loft for our multi-point inspection. Even simpler, with one call we can handle sail removal, transportation and inspection for one sail or your whole inventory.

6.  TAPE UP THAT TURNBUCKLE!

If you’ve ever scraped your finger on a piece of hardware, then you know it’s sharp enough to damage your sail. Even seemingly blunt objects (like a spreader) can damage sails on a tack, so take a look around (and up) to see what can or should be covered to protect your sails. If you have an extra piece of spinnaker cloth, wipe it across every surface of your boat and rigging. If it snags, put some tape on it. Rigging tape, self-fusing silicone tape, leather and other protective coverings are relatively inexpensive ways to protect your sails.

7.  READ THE WRITING ON THE LEECH.

Even a well-protected spreader-tip or navigation light can wear a sail tack-after-tack. For these areas, a spreader-patch (or navigation light-patch, etc.) might be the answer. Quantum service experts use a variety of materials for these abrasion-resistant patches, ranging from pressure-sensitive-adhesive-backed Kevlar for a racing genoa to Sunbrella® cloth for cruising sails.

8.  FIX IT NOW INSTEAD OF REPLACING IT LATER.

A lot of catastrophic sail failures can be traced back to a small repair that was never made.  When you notice a small hole or a chafed spot that’s getting increasingly worse, save yourself serious head- and wallet-ache by addressing the problem while it is still small. Our service experts have heard more than a few people come into the loft with a shredded sail saying, “I’ve been meaning to get that spot patched”.

9.  BAG IT!

Pretty simple here. There’s a good reason new sails come with a sturdy bag and it’s not just another place for a logo. That bag is a much cheaper sacrificial covering than the sail inside of it. Take a look at an old sail bag that’s scuffed and torn-up, now imagine if that were your sail. Not good. It can be a pain to keep track of bags, but used regularly, they can really earn their keep.

10.  IF YOU DON’T KNOW…ASK.

Curious about some sail-care method you’ve heard somebody touting on the dock or trying to figure out if your sail could use a new piece of webbing on the tack? Feel free to call the service team at your local Quantum loft. We’re happy to field your questions and provide helpful pointers. Consider us a member of your team.

_________

Contact Quantum Sails Gulf Coast at gulfcoast@quantumsails.com or 281-474-4168 to learn more about protecting your investment. Visit QuantumSails.com for more great tips and tricks to help you meet all of your sailing challenges.

History of the Houston Yacht Club

HYC1 History of the Houston Yacht Club

Invitation to the Centennial Celebration of the Houston Yacht Club, 1997. Artwork by Al Barnes. Photos: HYC Archives.

Sam Akkerman, author of the book From Buffalo Bayou to Galveston Bay: The centennial history of the Houston Yacht Club, 1897 to 1997 on how it came to fruition. 

akkerman History of the Houston Yacht Club

Sam Akkerman

How did you get started on this project of writing the book?

I became involved in researching and writing about the history of HYC around 1995, two years before the club’s 100 year anniversary celebration. I was invited to attend one of the Centennial Committee meetings where Fleet Historian Tynes Sparks spoke and explained that one of the committee’s goals was to publish a book on the Club’s history and he needed help.

He had boxes of old photographs, clippings, and collections of stories he had been putting together for years. Few early records still existed, but Tynes knew the Club’s legendary history was worth telling and that documentation existed at the Houston Metropolitan Research Center (HMRC).

 As an English major who had always enjoyed research and writing, I was intrigued. Tynes and I scheduled a visit to the HMRC.

On that initial visit we found a Houston Post article describing the first formal meeting of the Club, February 2, 1898 at the Binz Building, Houston’s first skyscraper. It was a thrilling find and I quickly became fascinated by the Club’s history stashed away in that building.

Because the Club’s founders were prominent Houstonians, I read everything I could find on the city’s history and the early 20th century development of the Galveston Bay area as a summer destination for Houston residents.

I located and interviewed many children and grandchildren of the founders and early members. They were all aware of their families’ connections to HYC and generously shared photos and stories.

What surprised you the most as you gathered information about the history of the club?

Many discoveries were made along the way. When I started, we knew that the Club originally met and kept their boats near the foot of Main Street in downtown Houston. Research enabled  us to document specific locations: for a while a wharf was leased at the foot of Travis Street and meetings were held in a ‘tin shack’ near today’s Spaghetti Warehouse.

Another important ‘discovery’ was realizing the true significance of our early membership in the Gulf Yachting Association (GYA). In 1920 we became a founding member of the venerable southern boating organization that promoted inter-club competition in affordable one design boats from Florida to Texas. A bay home was needed for the boats, practices, and competition required by the amateur, family friendly, GYA program which the Club embraced wholeheartedly. I  believe the mission HYC fulfills today was shaped by that program.

And I must mention the oft forgotten role the Club played in the early development of the Houston Ship Channel. The members were not only vocal in their support but their yachts were used to tour dignitaries and visitors who had the power to influence the legislation to dredge the Bayou and Bay into a waterway that would accommodate ocean going vessels.

This focus of the Club continued until World War I. By then the Port was well on its way to becoming the giant we know it as today.

Madlin Stevenson and friends on an R-boat in the Houston Yacht Club harbor in 1929.

Is there a favorite story about some of the members that made you laugh out loud when you were doing research?

Humor reigned throughout the years. Choosing one incident is impossible. Theme parties with elaborate costumes were the norm after World War II. Props might include a live donkey in the Porthole bar or an old footed bathtub for serving “bootleg gin.” Beginning in 1936 the Dumbbell Award was presented periodically to recognize boating mishaps. Recipients and their ‘dumb’ mistakes were carefully recorded in a small gold stamped binder.  Helmsmen, not crew, falling overboard seem to have been quite common.

Where did you grow up and when did you become a member of the Houston Yacht Club?

I was born in Louisiana but grew up in Texas.  My family moved to Houston when I was 12.

In 1989, my husband bought a catamaran and we were sailing it one weekend when we saw a long line of Sunfish being towed behind a motor boat. Each boat had a young skipper on board, relaxing as they cruised along under tow. We learned they were HYC Ragnots (as the Club’s youth are called) and they were on their way across the Bay to an inter-club regatta. My daughters were 9 and 12, a perfect age to become Ragnots and the next summer I was one of the moms in the motor boats towing kids across the Bay.

Is there a favorite time period in the club’s history that really stands out in your mind?

The early years of the Club are among my favorites to study. Members had a fleet of amazing long, sleek luxury yachts which would rival any port in the south. They were prominent businessmen who worked tirelessly to promote the city and ship channel. Yet they commissioned a fleet of small one design sailboats for fair competition. Their younger members formed the Launch Club Canoe Division and explored islands in the Bayou that have long since disappeared. Their cruises were intended for family members and their regattas were events designed to be enjoyed by all ages, boaters and ‘landlubbers’ alike.

Are you currently working on any other projects?

We are proud to have a very well documented article on HYC’s history accepted and included in the recently launched Handbook of Houston, a publication of the Handbook of Texas Online, the most highly respected resource of state history.

Another months long project completed this spring is a permanent exhibit at the Club that honors HYC’s nationally recognized reputation for excellence in race management. Our research documented the national, international, and world regattas that HYC has hosted in the last 120 years. This information was then incorporated into a striking professionally designed display in the Club’s lobby. The project commemorates our 90/120 Celebration – this year the clubhouse is 90 years old and the organization is 120 years old.

Tell me a little bit about your relationship with Rice University.

In 2010 a large portion of our archives was digitized as part of an online exhibit that includes materials from Rice University and the Houston Area Digital Archives at the Houston Public Library. The exhibit, Business and Pleasure on Houston Waterways, explores the relationship Houston has with Buffalo Bayou and Galveston Bay. It was an honor for us to be included in this project and it also provided us with a unique opportunity to preserve our archival materials – the scanned images are safe – permanently stored and accessible online. As well, it  provides another method of sharing our history.

View overlooking lawn, wading pool, signal mast and harbor of the Houston Yacht Club during the Annual Regatta of 1954.

The Houston Yacht Club has a long tradition of bringing families together who love boating on Galveston Bay. In your opinion, is this still the best way to describe the mission of the club today?

Yes. Bringing together families who love the bay does describe what HYC is all about. As the older Ragnots leave for college, a new generation sails out to claim their own place in the cluster of Optis at the start line. Experienced sailors teach the sport and share their boats with novices. New volunteers join the long time volunteers who organize the programs and events for all ages and the well run regattas that make Galveston Bay a nationally known recreational boating center.

100+ Years of Sailing: A History of Sailing Clubs on Galveston Bay

hyc 100+ Years of Sailing: A History of Sailing Clubs on Galveston Bay

Houston Yacht Club   

Organized in 1897, the club was located on Buffalo Bayou in Houston. It was known as the Houston Yacht and Power Boat Club from 1905-1906, and the Houston Launch Club from 1906-1926. In 1927 the club went back to the original name Houston Yacht Club.

Always more than simply a social or boating organization, during the early years it was identified with some of the most fundamental developments in Houston’s growth.

The present day club house was built in 1927 in La Porte. Hurricanes and fires have left their mark on the original building but she still stands today. A charter member of the Gulf Yachting Association, the club is now over a hundred and twenty years old.

seabrooksailing 100+ Years of Sailing: A History of Sailing Clubs on Galveston Bay

Seabrook Sailing Club

The club was founded in 1934 as a means to enjoy sailing with friends in Galveston Bay. That philosophy continues today. The original club was located along the Kemah waterfront.

In 1950 the club purchased the property at 1020 Todville Rd. in Seabrook. Hurricane Ike destroyed the club house in 2008. The new club house was rebuilt and completed through dedicated club members.

Early Members: Earl Gerloff and Martin Bludworth

Texas Corinthian Yacht Club 

Founded in 1938 to educate its members and their families in the art of sailing, seamanship and boat handling.

The original clubhouse completed in 1938 was destroyed by Hurricane Ike in September 2008. The new club house and rebuilt grounds were dedicated Jan. 1, 2010.

Founding Members: Albert Bel Fay, Ernest Bel Fay, Jack Garrett, William Stamps Farish, and William McIver Streetman

Galveston Bay Cruising Association 

GBCA traces its origin back to 1947 when a small group of sailboat racing enthusiasts informally organized the club.  The club existed and prospered as a letter head organization, without elected officers, bylaws, dues, or a home.

The Club was formally organized in 1954 with elected officials, bylaws and handicap races. The Friday night Rum Races are some of the most popular races run on Galveston Bay.

Early member:  Rufus Bud Smith

Lakewood Yacht Club      

Founded in 1955 the club sits on 38 acres with water frontage on Clear Lake. It has four covered sheds and numerous docks. The original club just catered to power boats, but over the years sailboats kept showing up and the club kept growing. Lakewood Yacht Club will host the J-105 North Americans this fall.

Founding Members: Sterling Hogan Sr., Captain WR Parker and JD Kirkpatrick.

2017 AND BEYOND: THE FUTURE OF SAILING

Learning to Fly with Next Generation USA

Whether you are a seasoned sailor or just getting your feet wet, you can’t help but look in awe at the America’s Cup boats – fast, foiling multihulls with a wing instead of a sail.

The United States, represented by team Next Generation USA, is one of 12 countries entered in the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup.  Each team is allowed seven days of practice on the AC45F prior to the event in June.  That’s it, just seven days on a boat unfamiliar to anyone outside a small circle of America’s Cup Teams.

The AC45F is sailed with six crew members and each one has a critical job.  The wing controls the overall power of the boat, so it is in constant motion.  In order to get foiling, the boat needs to be going at least 16 knots and all of the crew must be on the windward side.  Getting up to speed is like taking off in an airplane. The adrenaline is pumping but no one seems concerned that they are screaming downwind, six feet above the water on a 45ft carbon rocket.

Next Generation USA is more than just a group of young sailors. These guys are the face of our country and they will be representing the USA at the highest level of sailing.

Members of Next Generation USA

  • Carson Crain Skipper/Helmsman
  • Matthew Whitehead Wing Trimmer
  • Scott Ewing Soft Sail Trimmer
  • Preston Farrow Grinder
  • Ian Storck Grinder (spare)
  • Markus Edegran Bowman
  • Reed Baldridge Tactician

Don’t Let Your Sails Get Burned

silken 2015 06 03 0499 Don’t Let Your Sails Get Burned

By Quantum Sails

Nobody likes getting sunburned, and neither do your sails. What happens when the sun burns your sails?

If not properly protected, sunburned sails can tear while in use, stranding you and your family. Ultraviolet (UV) covers can help protect your sails and your sailing season. Even seasonal UV exposure in the Northern latitudes can cause serious problems in a short amount of time. Quantum Sails Pacific Loft Service Manager Emre Kalaycioglu has a lot of experience helping customers. Here are his tips.

WHY ARE UV COVERS IMPORTANT?

If you have a furling genoa or mainsail, you probably keep it on your rig for an extended period of time. However, the elements – especially the sun – are harmful to your sails. Over the years, the sun will begin to burn out the sail’s leech, and sunburn will appear on the sail. These sunburned areas weaken over time. While sailing, stress on the sails can cause the threads to break in the weaker areas. A proper UV cover can protect your investment from the damaging UV rays of the sun.

HOW DO I TAKE CARE OF THE UV COVER?

A common misconception is that when a UV cover is installed it will last forever, but the sail cover actually needs to be maintained to last.

Something that most people overlook about their UV covers is how often they need to be re-stitched in order to last. While the UV cover can last anywhere from 4-8 seasons – depending greatly on exposure and maintenance – the thread may only last about half the lifespan of the cover, as it degrades faster than the cover itself. Bringing your sails into your local Quantum Sails loft to have the covers re-stitched will increase the lifespan of your UV covers and ultimately your sails.

Another common mistake most sailors make is keeping their sails hoisted on the boat for an extended period of time. It’s important to drop your sails and, whenever possible, keep them in a cool, dry place between sailing trips. To prevent the UV cover from deteriorating, wash your sails with fresh, clean water on a regular basis, then let them dry completely before refurling (washing and drying is very important for your sails, especially after a rainy season).

When leaving the boat, take extra caution to make sure your sails are set and won’t come loose with any strong winds. An extra sail tie could help prevent your sails from flogging, which will protect your sails and UV cover from extra wear and tear.

WHEN IS IT TIME TO SERVICE?

UV covers degrade with UV exposure and use. While a UV cover in New England may last anywhere from 6-8 seasons, that same cover in the Caribbean may only last 3-4 seasons.

It’s important to check over your sails at the beginning and end of every season. See if there are any chafed or damaged areas on your sail and UV cover. Be sure to check the side of the sail opposite the UV cover. If you see any color change on that side, it’s time to replace the UV cover as soon as possible, as the discoloration means the current UV cover has expired and is no longer protecting your sail against the sun. Delaying that replacement can cause extensive damage to the sail.

WHAT MATERIALS DO YOU SUGGEST FOR A UV COVER?

At Quantum Sails, we recommend Sunbrella UV Cover fabric. Our sewing machine thread we generally use is 138 Dabond thread for sewing UV covers – it’s thicker than what our competitors use, and thus lasts a little bit longer. We can also use UV stable thread, such as Tenara or SolarFix thread, but it’s considerably more expensive, so may not always be the best option.

For more great sailing tips and tricks or to learn about Quantum Sails, visit www.QuantumSails.com.

Family, Fun and Friendships: One Hundred Years of Commitment to the Sea

yacht sales co family Family, Fun and Friendships: One Hundred Years of Commitment to the Sea

Owner of the Yacht Sales Company, Jonathon Davis with his wife Kim, son Cole and daughter Camille at the Sea Star Base Galveston. Photography by Ashley Henry with Hey Pretty Baby Photography.

The Yacht Sales Company

Throughout history sailing has been instrumental in the development of civilization, affording humanity greater mobility than travel over land, whether for trade transport or warfare, and the capacity for fishing. Sailing for pleasure can involve short trips across a bay, day sailing, coastal cruising, and more extended offshore or ‘blue-water’ cruising. These trips can be singlehanded or the vessel may be crewed by families or groups of friends.

For the last 100 years the Mecca of sailing in the United States is the Gulf Coast of Texas, more specifically Galveston Bay, the third largest boating community in the United States. Galveston Bay has a prolific sailing and water lifestyle that embodies beautiful traditions for family, fun, and friendships.

Jonathon Davis, owner and founder of The Yacht Sales Company located in Kemah, has a family with this type of lifestyle. Jonathon and his lovely wife, Kim, have more than 150,000 sea miles between the two of them. Jonathon actually proposed to Kim on a dive on one of their trips at sea. Jonathon feels that family always comes first and has his 4 year old son, Cole, and new baby girl, Camille, go sailing as much as possible. Fun is always a factor with this family.

When Jonathon was creating The Yacht Sales Company he understood what it meant to have a rich history of sailing with the vendors he was choosing to represent and promote at his dealership. He specifically sought out Groupe Beneteau, who has the richest yachting tradition in the industry being privately owned for 130 years. This is reflected deeper in their purchase of CNB and Lagoon, who TYSC is the dealer for as well. With the dealership being located in Kemah, bordering Galveston Bay, he has much to say about family, fun, and friendships on the water.

beneteau 300x224 Family, Fun and Friendships: One Hundred Years of Commitment to the Sea

Jonathon and Kim Davis with Jean Morrison.

Beneteau boatyard, headquartered in France with manufacturing facilities located in South Carolina, was created in 1884 by Benjamin Beneteau. He was a very determined young man and at the early age of 12 he became a ship’s boy on the lugger, Eliza. His dream of building boats would begin on the boatyard of his friend’s father. His determination would convince his uncle, and he entered Rochefort Maritime towards the end of 1879 for his military service. Once out, he decided to create his boatyard near a bridge called, Quai des Greniers, and called his place “Beneteau.” Today, Beneteau is the largest sailboat manufacturer in the world.

Beneteau 1962-1964 and a Beneteau Oceanis Yacht 62.

The growth of Beneteau has been nothing but extraordinary, and it has acquired and incorporated Prestige, CNB, Lagoon, O’Hara, I.R.M., BH, Four Winns, Glastron, Wellcraft, Scarab and Monte Carlo Yacht. Annette Beneteau-Roux has been in command and control of Beneteau for the last 40 years and gives credit to their success to her family, executives, loyal and talented employees, as well as dealers and customers throughout the world, all of whom have become friends. “I believe we are one of the oldest boat building yards in the world to be run by the family as a majority,” said Annette Beneteau-Roux.

Another amazing line within this sailboat dynasty, that holds great family traditions, is Lagoon, which is in association with CNB Yacht Builders. The Lagoon model was established in 1984 and was originally a shipyard building monohull and multihull offshore racing boats. The first generation of cruising catamarans was launched from 1987 to 1996. They are celebrating their 30th year and today the company distributes its yachts in 53 countries. Davis said that the Lagoon is one of the dealerships best sellers! Recently, Jonathon Davis and team, won the Harvest Moon Regatta with owner John Sherer on Sherer’s Lagoon 42 against eight other boats.

When speaking with Davis, he noted that one of the oldest brands of sailing vessels in the United States was Alden. He, and wife Kim, co-captained one of their vessels, the “Krisujen,” designed by Alden.

Alden began his design career as an apprentice in 1902 and started his own design firm in 1909. He had modest success until he won his first Bermuda Race and experienced great success. His race victories were with Malabar VII and Malabar X in 1932 and continued until the long-lived design business finally closed in 2008. Today, the extensive Alden design archive has been gifted to the Hart Nautical Collections of MIT Museum. Jonathon commented that the Krisujen was a dynamic sailing experience and many wonderful memories were established while captaining this vessel.

The Escapade.

The sailing vessel, “Escapade,” built in 1938, holding an impressive amount of racing titles, and becoming known as Queen of the Great Lakes, holds deep inspiration for Jonathon Davis because of one special woman named Jean Morrison. While he was telling the tales of Jean and her exuberance for life, you can hear the admiration and excitement he had for this very special lady. With sailing stories ranging from stateside to international waters the one of the Escapade is one of his favorites. Jean’s husband was not much of a sailor but he appreciated the love that his wife had for sailing. He offered her something she couldn’t refuse. He said, “If you could have any sailboat you wanted what would it be?” Without hesitation she said, “Well, I would want the Escapade!” The vessel held a special place in her heart because she remembers cleaning it as a young girl. The request was granted and it launched an exciting time of sailing worldwide with a crew including her pet monkey. She told Jonathon once, with her childlike enthusiasm, “Jonathon, when you get as old as I am and you find something you love, you damned well better enjoy it!” He has never forgotten those words and makes it a motto for the way he views life.

To bring this story full circle, “friends” would be a good place to end. One of Jonathon Davis dearest friends and closest confidants was Roy Newberry, Sr. Roy had a vivacious life on the water and Davis states, “Everything I know about the water I owe to Roy Newberry.” Sailing brought these two together and the life long friendship never faltered. They sailed together, raced together, and actually won Jonathon’s first Harvest Moon Regatta dating back to 1992 on the sailboat, Alessandra. Jonathon admired everything about this sailor and loved his family. The stories that were shared between them are those of legends.

Jonathon so greatly respected Roy’s life in the local community and to sailing that he did a Cannon Dedication and race in appreciation of his devoted service to both humanity and the sport of sailing before his passing in 2016. Roy always told his kids, “See that crumby little boat over there; realize you can go wherever you want in the world in that!”

In the world of sailing heartstrings are pulled, passion is flared, and history is always made. Jonathon Davis and his family have enjoyed this “sailing life” for a quarter of a century and looks forward to many more years to come. Nothing is more exciting than establishing lifelong memories that are made with family, fun, and friendships due to a commitment to the sea and all that goes with it.

For more information on The Yacht Sales Company please visit www.theyachtsalescompany.com.

 

New Sails Aren’t Always the Best Answer

By Quantum Sails

Sadly there is no such thing as a sail that lasts forever. However, when your sails become stretched out and lose their shape, it doesn’t necessarily mean you need new ones. Learn about Precision Recuts to help extend the life of your sails and save you money.

It’s never a fun moment when you realize your trusty sail won’t let you point to the mark or when the wind picks up and you can’t control the heel and your glass of wine takes a trip down your shirt. Thankfully buying a new sail isn’t your only option.

Precision Recuts bring almost 90% of your sail’s original shape back to life. Both membrane and woven sails are candidates for reshaping and a recut will often cost less than 20% of a new sail. The condition of the sailcloth is key; it must not be too worn and stretchy or the adjustments will not produce the desired results. With good fabric, reshaping can generally be done once or twice during the life of a sail.

C&C 30 Extreme 2 owner Dan Cheresh says “I have been able to continually adjust and refine sail shape through recuts to keep my sails as fast as possible.” Erin Houpt from Dream Yacht Charter has trusted recuts for all of the in-mast furling mainsails in his fleet. “The sails are easier to furl and our customers are pleased with the increased performance.”

Our National Service Director Charlie Saville outlines the three main options to help increase performance and enjoyment for racing and cruising sails.

Broad Seam Reshape New Sails Arent Always the Best Answer

Broad Seam Reshape

PROBLEM: Deep draft. Full sail. Can’t point very high.

The sail depth becomes fuller and more rounded. The draft moves aft. You’re no longer able to point as high as when the sail was new. The boat becomes harder to steer, heels more and responsiveness is slowed. For racing boats, the inability to hold a lane or position close to other boats can really destroy a tactical game plan.

SOLUTION: Seam reshape.

Seams are reshaped and extra fabric is removed. This procedure flattens the sail and helps return the draft to the original and optimal location. Generally, three to five seams are remade to achieve desired shape.

RESULT: Faster sail. Points higher!

With the flatter sail you can now point higher than before! Your sail is flatter, faster and more efficient. Your boat sails more upright, and is far more responsive.

Luft Curve Reshape New Sails Arent Always the Best Answer

Luff Curve Reshape

PROBLEM: Reduced entry. Sail is hard to steer.

As sails age, their entry is reduced due to a variety of factors. Stretch, as well as over-tensioning the halyard can reduce entry. Reduced entry will make the sail harder to trim, less efficient and make steering more difficult (and less fun!)

SOLUTION: Luff curve change.

Luff curve can be restored to help return the sail to its original entry shape. Sometimes a luff curve change is made to remove entry and flatten the sail.

RESULT: Faster. Easier to steer sails.

Returning entry gives you a bigger range to steer inside of that is still ultra-fast. Steering will be easier and you’ll be able to go faster.

Leech Takeup

PROBLEM: Leech falls away. Sail isn’t delivering power.

On cruising Dacron® mainsails and genoas, the leech can stretch and fall away, making the sail more difficult to trim and reducing boat speed. This is especially prevalent on larger cruising mainsails and mainsails with large roaches. Leech stretch can also hamper the use of furling systems.

SOLUTION: Leech takeup.

By removing extra fabric at a seam or elsewhere on the sail, the leech can be shortened and straightened to its original dimensions and shape.

RESULT: Smooth leech with proper power and exit. More powerful sail.

By bringing the leech back to its in-line design shape, the sail is once a gain a proper foil and will deliver efficient power.

Contact Quantum Sails Gulf Coast at gulfcoast@quantumsails.com or 281-474-4768 to learn more about Precision Recuts and find out if your sail is a candidate. Visit QuantumSails.com for more great tips and tricks to help you meet all of your sailing challenges.