Sunday, July 16, 2017

Tabares Wins J/80 Worlds

Rayco Tabares (ESP) is the 2017 J/80 World Champion, retaining the title for the third consecutive year, Racing Hotel Princesa Yaiza, with a crew of: Alejandro Bethencourt Fuentes, Afredo Gonzalez, Hector Gonzalez, and Laiyin Francisca Ley Torres Jorge.

Rayco Tabares has now won the J/80 World Championship four times! The Spanish team from Lanzarote, Canary Islands, led the regatta from the first day to the last, but did survive a jitter on the penultimate day. On the last day of racing, the team scored two second place finishes to clinch the world title. A northerly breeze ranging from 10-18 knots, with shifts both to the west and the east, provided yet another testing race course in the Central Solent. All fourteen scheduled races were completed, much to the satisfaction of the competitors, which roundly showed their approval for a World Championship that was extremely well run.

"It has been amazing.” commented Rayco. “This is the fourth J/80 World Title for us, and we are really, really happy. I want to emphasis the incredible work done by the organization of this J/80 Worlds. On the water it has been perfect with a great team running the races, and ashore the Royal Southern has been looking after all of us in a great way - Perfect organization".

"I am really proud of my team. We are colleagues, we are friends, and we are a family. The team had worked brilliantly, leading to winning the Worlds. Except for yesterday, when we raced in a conservative mode, we have raced as normal, and the results have been great. The race area is quite complex due to the currents, but I have felt really comfortable with the medium to strong winds; it´s quite similar to the average wind speed we sail in Lanzarote.”
 2017 J/80 World Champions
Hotel Princesa Yaiza: Rayco Tabares, Alejandro Bethencourt Fuentes, Afredo Gonzalez, Hector Gonzalez, and Laiyin Francisca Ley Torres Jorge.
Eric Brezellec (FRA) was runner up for the second year in a row. The team from Northern Brittany, racing Courrier Junior, scored seven podium finishes, but it was not enough to win a highly competitive regatta. Simon Moriceau (FRA), racing ArMen Habitat, won both of today's races to finish the championship in third position. The team from Nantes had scored five podium finishes, including three race wins, to take third by just two points, from Jose Maria Van Der Ploeg (ESP), racing VSA Comunicacion.

Javier Chacártegui Cirerol (ESP), racing HM Hotels, was the top Corinthian Boat. Runner up for the Corinthian Class was Pepequin Orbaneja (ESP), racing Cenyt Hospital Marbella Team, and third was Luc Nadal (FRA) racing Gan'Ja.

Top Lady helm was Elodie Bonafous (FRA), racing J'aime voile baie de Morlaix, with an all girls team. Luke Patience, racing Ryoko Meka, was the top British boat. Patrick O Neill, racing Mojo was the top Irish entry and Peter Paul de Vries, racing Led 2 Lease, was the top boat from the Netherlands.
Royal Southern Yacht Club Commodore, Karen Henderson-Williams, and Regatta Director Jane Windsor, officiated at the J/80 Worlds Prize Giving Ceremony, sponsored by Raymarine, who provided a wealth of top marine electronics for the winners. Harken and Baltic Lifejackets provided even more prizes.

For more information visit:

Friday, July 14, 2017

J/80 Worlds Day 4 - Brezellec Reels in Tabares

Eric Brezellec (FRA) had an outstanding fourth day at the J/80 World Championship, scoring a scintillating 1-7-1-2, and is now within striking distance of Rayco Tabares (ESP). The defending world champion, from Lanzarote, is still in pole position, but a 4-1-16-18, has cut his championship lead to just seven points, with two races remaining. Tomorrow is the 14th July, French National Day, and Brezellec will be coming out with all guns blazing.
“Today was a very tricky day, with plenty of shifts in the wind and changes in the tide, and we did not get the best results, especially in the last two races, but tomorrow we will be strong and sail better.” promised Rayco Tabares.
Past J/80 world champion, and reigning Spanish champion, Jose Maria Van Der Ploeg (ESP) scored 8-4-11-1 today, to move ahead of Luke Patience (GBR), in the fight for the podium. Simon Moriceau (FRA) slipped up in Race 10, but came back with a third in Race 12, to have a chance of making third for the regatta.
With high pressure and a light southerly gradient wind forecast, there was the possibility that the gradient breeze would be fizzled out by a sea breeze in the afternoon. PRO Stuart Childerley, moved the scheduled start an hour earlier, and made a late call to change the starting area to East Knoll. The two decisions proved to be spot on, providing great races and enough time to get four races sailed on a top class racecourse.
Jon Powell (GBR) had his best day, scoring a 6-2-3-4, to move up three places. Rétho Rémi scored an impressive 11-3-4-5, to move up five places. Chris Body (GBR) came within inches of winning his first J/80 World Championship race, but was just beaten to the line by Brezellec.
“We know we had speed coming into the regatta but that is not enough in this fleet, you have to get off the line well, stay in pressure, and play the shifts. Today we had four races that were both physically and mentally exhausting, so to post the second best results of the day is very satisfying.” commented Jon Powell.
Rétho Rémi's Yacht Concept - CNP at the Wight Vodka Prize Giving. (Graham Nixon/RSrnYC)
Royal Southern YC Rear Commodore Sailing, Robert Vose, welcomed competitors to the Prince Philip Yacht Haven. With complimentary food and drink, provided by the Royal Southern Yacht Club, the daily prize giving was held, which was sponsored by Wight Vodka.
There was also a special prize for two of the youngest competitors at the regatta Luiz Miro. who is 12, and Andres Segura, who is just nine years old. Both of the boys attended a sell out J/80 Class Dinner, held at the Royal Southern Yacht Club. With over 200 sailors enjoying a superb dinner at the club's main dining room.
Racing at the 16th edition of the J/80 World Championship will conclude tomorrow, Friday 14 July, with two final races scheduled from 10:30 BST (11:30 UTC).

For live updates from the 2017 J/80 World Championship, including video and pictures from the race course: For more information visit:

Thursday, July 13, 2017

J/80 Worlds - Day 3 Report

Rayco Tabares (ESP) has retained his lead in the J/80 World Championship, but a crack has appeared in the Spanish team's seemingly invincible armour, scoring eighth in the last race of a tricky day in the Solent. Luke Patience (GBR) took his first race win, to move up to second place, and Eric Brezellec (FRA) had the best day of all, scoring a 3-3-1 to move up to third for the championship. Jose Maria Van Der Ploeg (ESP) scored 10-10-2 to move up to fourth.
PRO Stuart Childerley moved the scheduled start an hour earlier for racing, and it proved to be an excellent decision. “The low pressure system that came through last night had gone through and we were expecting the weather to become unstable in the afternoon, which is exactly what happened. The wind oscillated through an axis of about 45 degrees today, causing plenty of potential traps for the competitors, and the Race Committee had to adjust the course on many occasions to compensate for the bigger shifts, the mark layers and race management team did a fantastic job today.”
Today's top team was skippered by Breton Eric Brezellec, the last time Eric competed in the UK at the J/80 World Championship was in Falmouth, 2005. His team sailed the boat over 200 miles, from St Malo, with tents on board for regatta accommodation. “Time on the boat is very important, we train a lot.” commented Eric. “Today it was important to take the shifts as they arrived, it was much more open than yesterday. Rayco (Tabares) looks very strong, it looks very hard to beat him, but this regatta has not finished, it is still possible.”
“It would have been very easy to have a shocker today.” commented 470 Olympic Silver Medallist, Luke Patience. “Chris (Grube) did a great job reading the shifts, especially in the penultimate race, but that was a far from an easy race course today. When the wind is coming off the land like that, it can shift both ways. Personally, I tried to concentrate more on driving the boat and that has also paid off.”
Tech-Talk with Nigel Young – North Sails
Nigel is racing with Pat O'Neill's Mojo from Howth YC, Ireland. Pat has enjoyed success in many forms of sailing but is new to the J/80 Class. For a new team, Mojo is having a great championship and looking to break into the top ten, which would be an outstanding achievement.
Our main aim is to try to get the boat up to speed.” commented Nigel. “The best place to is the rig tune. The initial set up had too much mast bend, and we could not generate enough power. Before the championship, we calibrated all of the rig settings using the North Sails tuning guide, which has been created through many hours of work by experts. The importance of setting up a rig in a one design boat is massive, our first aim is to get the boat up to what we call fleet speed and therefore competitive. After that you start to learn how you sail the boat, and you find things that suit your own style, which you modify to your own particular preference. Our boat speed was better today and after a great start were in third place at the top mark, eventually finishing the race in sixth. Getting the boat going and improving performance is really rewarding for all of us.”
Royal Southern YC Rear Commodore Sailing, Robert Vose, welcomed competitors to the Prince Philip Yacht Haven. With complimentary beer and burgers, provided by Synergy Grill, the daily prize giving, sponsored by North Sails, was extremely well attended. There was a special prize for Claire Montécot's team racing Startijenn, which broke their rig yesterday. Startijenn was back out racing today, after working through the night, with assistance from Key Yachting.

For live updates from the 2017 J/80 World Championship, including video and pictures from the race course: For more information visit:
Eric Brezellec and his crew on Courrier Junior. Best results of the day award from North Sails, Molly Brown.
Claire Montecot receiving a special award for replacing the mast overnight from North Sails Molly Brown.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

J/80 Worlds - Day 2 Report

Reigning J/80 World Champion, Rayco Tabares (ESP), stamped his authority on the 2017 J/80 World Championship, with two bullets and a second to open up a commanding lead for the regatta, but it was a game of snakes and ladders for the rest of the fleet.

Simon Moriceau (FRA) has climbed to second place after an 8-3-1 today, and Luke Patience (GBR) put into two great races, but slipped up in the last race to remain in third place. J/80 UK National Champion, Kevin Sproul (GBR), had a shocker dropping eight places after a 19-24-13. 2012 J/80 World Champion, Jose Maria Van Der Ploeg (ESP) had a good day, scoring a 5-2-5 to move up to fourth. Whilst last year's runner up, Eric Brezellec (FRA), was called OCS in Race Four, and slips down to fourteenth.
PRO Stuart Childerley and his team, set three good races, resulting in a highly competitive starts and mark roundings. It was a tough day on the Solent for the 48 competitors in the J/80 World Championship, a low pressure system brought poor visibility and rain for much of the day. With the wind oscillating in speed and direction, making the correct tactical decisions was difficult.
“We had good speed today, especially downwind, and we made the right tactical choices.” commented Simon Moriceau. “Today we worked well as a team, and there was good communication. When we were down in the fleet we remained calm, and just concentrated on passing one boat at a time. Coming from Brittany, we are used to this kind of weather; it is not a problem for us.”
Jose Maria Van Der Ploeg (ESP) had a great day on the water scoring a 5-2-5 to finish the day in eighth place, which is likely to improve once the discard kicks in tomorrow. Among their crew is the youngest competitor in the championship, Luis Miro, just 12 years old. “Jose Maria is a good friend of my family, I sail Optimist normally, so this is very exciting for me!” smiled Luis. The current French National Champion, Simon Bertheau, scored an impressive 4-6-6 to place fifth.
Royal Southern YC Rear Commodore Sailing, Robert Vose, welcomed competitors to the Royal Southern Pier for complimentary food and refreshments, and officiated at the daily prize giving, sponsored by Ocean Rope.

For live updates from the 2017 J/80 World Championship, including video and pictures from the race course: For more information visit:

J/80 Worlds - Day 1 Report

The 16th edition of the J/80 World Championship got off to a flying start with two spectacular championship races for the 48 boat fleet. A southwesterly wind of 12 knots built during the afternoon, piping up to over 20 knots in the gusts. With wind over tide shortly after the start, the combat zone boiled up with the J/80s powering upwind, then surfing downwind, in a full on foam up. Rayco Tavares (ESP) leads the championship, Kevin Sproul (GBR) is second and Luke Patience (GBR) third.
PRO Stuart Childerley held a practice race In the morning, and after a big wind shift, moved the course to the east. “It can be a devil of a race area but we got two good races in today, helped by the competitors who settled into the tidal conditions very well at the start, but I expect that from this fleet, which is full of talented sailors.” commented Stuart Childerley.
The battle of the day was won by reigning J/80 World Champion, Rayco Tavares, who is top of the leaderboard after the first day, but the Spaniard did not have it all his own way. Reigning UK National Champion, Kevin Sproul won Race One but Rayco scored a 2-1 to Kevin's 1-4. The battle is due to continue all week.
Coming from Lanzarote, we are used to sailing in strong winds but the tide and short chop is something different for us.” commented Rayco. “There are strong local teams, which have better knowledge of the Solent, and there are other high quality teams from overseas as well.”
Olympic 470 Silver Medallist, Luke Patience is in third. “It is great to score two keepers on the first day, as we have only just put this team together.” commented Luke. “The plan is to try and improve our performance as the regatta develops, so we are happy to have got off to a good start in a very good fleet.” Spain's Javier Chacártegui scored a 8-2 to finish the day in fifth.. 2012 J/80 World Champion, Jose Maria Van Der Ploeg, scored a third in Race One but was over eager in Race Two, and having returned to re-start correctly, finished the day with a poor result.
Tech Talk - The Perfect Start
North Sails Ruairidh Scott (2005 J/80 World Champion).
The trick is you have to practice how to sail really slowly and not get stalled or go head to wind. You need to find the slowest that you can sail, and remain in control, which on a J/80 is 3 knots or less. If you can be just approaching the line at that speed, sailing very high, possibly inside the jib and inside the main a little bit. Then you bear away a little bit, fill the sails up and go. If you get your time on distance right, it is a very low stress and an easy way to start the boat well. You want to start at target speed with height, and then it is difficult for anyone to attack you. Control and consistency means that you are the master of your own destiny
Commodore of the Royal Southern Yacht Club, Karen Henderson-Williams, officiated at the daily prize giving, which was sponsored today by Ocean Safety. For live updates from the 2017 J/80 World Championship, including video and pictures from the race course: For more information visit:

Thursday, July 6, 2017

2017 J/80 Worlds - the Stage is Set

The 16th edition of the J/80 World Championship, is proudly hosted by the Royal Southern Yacht Club. 47 teams from Australia, France, Great Britain, Ireland, the Netherlands, and Spain will be competing. 14 races are scheduled to take place in The Solent, providing four days of top class racing for a truly world class fleet.

Viva España!
Spain has been the dominate nation in the J/80 World Championships with eight wins, and Rayco Tabares Alvarez has won the title an unprecedented three times, including the last two years. Rayco is no stranger to the Royal Southern Yacht Club, he was tactician for Jose Maria Torcida's J/70, which was runner up for the J/70 Europeans, hosted by the Royal Southern last month. Alavrez's team is one of four Spanish teams competing. Jose Maria Van Der Ploeg won the J/80 Worlds in 2012 and an Olympic Gold Medal for Spain, in the Finn Class in 1992. Pepequin Orbaneja has placed third and fourth in the last two J/80 World Championships, and Javier Chacártegui Cirerol was fifth in 2016.

Rule Britannia!
25 teams from Great Britain will be competing, and hoping to emulate Great Britain's only J/80 World Champion, Ruairidh Scott in 2005. Another Scotsman, Kevin Sproul is the reigning J/80 UK National Champion, winning his seventh title at the Royal Southern last month. Scottish prowess in the class seems to be growing, Luke Patience is new to the J/80 Class, however the Olympic 470 Silver Medallist reeled off a string of wins at last month's J/80 UK Nationals. Jon Powell pushed Kevin Sproul all the way in this year's UK J/80 Nationals, and several other British skippers showed their pedigree including, Chris Body and Nick Haigh.

Vive la France!
13 teams from France will be competing including; Eric Brezellec, a former French J/80 National Champion and runner up at the 2016 Worlds. Simon Moriceau is the reigning French National Champion and Elodie Bonafous is one of France's top female drivers. Luc Nadal was eighth at the 2016 World Championship. Claire Montécot, owner of French J/80 Startijenn, sits on the French Class Committee and has been working with the UK J Boats agent, Key Yachting, to help promote the event in France.

The Royal Southern Yacht Club will be hosting daily prize givings with refreshments available to all crew. The 2017 J/80 World Champion will be crowned on Friday 14th July, with regatta sponsor Raymarine providing a wealth of top of the range marine electronics.

Royal Southern Yacht Club Commodore, Karen Henderson-Williams promises a warm welcome to all competitors. “The Club is honoured to be chosen to host the J/80 World Championship, we are very much looking forward to welcoming you all to the club. Our race management team and all of the staff at the clubhouse will be doing their best to make sure that you have an enjoyable and memorable regatta.”

For live updates from the 2017 J/80 World Championship, including video and pictures from the race course: For more information visit: