VX One Inlands and Keelboat Weekend at Ullswater Yacht Club

VX picThe first ever VX One Inland Championships were held at Ullswater Yacht Club on June 27 and 28. After eight close races, the winner was UYC member Howard Steavenson crewed by his son Tom. The final result was only decided on the last race with a first from Howard pipping Anne Noble and crew Katy Stewardson and Tom Giles into second place on count-back.

Organizer of the event David Clarke was delighted at the turnout of ten boats and racing conditions were ideal with good winds and sunshine on both days. In April last year, a VX One demo day was held at the club, the first time the boat had ever been sailed on Ullswater. Now the club has five and they were joined for the racing by five visitors including four from Scotland.

With a fresh breeze and the sun shining on Saturday, race officer Neil Thompson set a windward/leeward course, starting from the Sharrow Bay area round the corner from the clubhouse. The south westerley wind was ideal for a long windward leg down the lake with the magnificent backdrop of the peaks towards Helvellyn. The first race was won by visitor Duncan Hepplewhite from Loch Lomond SC, crewed by Richard Harper and Emily Styles. The next two races were won by Howard Steavenson, then a win in the fourth race by Anne Noble from UYC put her in contention.

Sunday brought rain, and stronger winds and four more races were scheduled. Anne Noble and her team won the first two races of the day, then it was back to Howard to come out top in the next race. So it was all to fight for in the final race of the event as the sun came out and after a black flag start, the Steavensons managed to edge out in front. Their first place put them on equal points with Anne Noble, and on countback, most firsts, they took the trophy and the title of first VX One inland champions.

The VX Ones were joined by racing keelboats talking part in UYC’s Keelboat Weekend for five of the windward/leeward races. A total of 13 boats took part – Flying Fifteens, Tempests, J70s and a K6.The overall winners were Dave and Sue Giles of UYC in a Flying Fifteen with two firsts and a second. One point behind in second place were Jon Modral-Gibbons and Colin Meadows in a Tempest with Christian Barnes and Denise Sykes in a Flying Fifteen third.

Overall Results: (top three)

VX One
1. Howard and Tom Steavenson, UYC, 15pts
2. Anne Noble, Katy Stewardson and Tom Giles, UYC 15pts
3. Duncan Hepplewhite, Richard Harper and Emily Styles, 20pts

Keelboat Weekend
1. Dave and Sue Giles, Flying Fifteen, UYC, 4pts
2. Jon Modral-Gibbons and Colin Meadows, Tempest, UYC, 5pts
3. Christian Barnes and Denise Sykes, Flying Fifteen, UYC, 9pts

Photo credit: Tim Olin

2015 Championship of Champions Gently Used Sail Purchase Opportunity

SalePurchasePDFFlyerThe sails will be used at the US Sailing Championship of the Champions by some of the top one design sailors in the US. The regatta ends October 11, 2015. Expect receiving the sails by October 30th, 2015. Only 20 sets available. Deposit required to reserve a set.

To pre-order your set contact:
BENNETT YACHTING, INC.
Brian Bennett
(401) 864-5659 / (401) 683-1208
bennettyachting@gmail.com

Cleveland Race Week

At the 35th edition of Cleveland Race Week hosted by Edgewater Yacht Club, four VX Ones competed in “One Design Weekend” from June 13-14. Four light air races were completed, all of which were won by locals Jeff and Keven Eiber. Michael Norris on Flash Rider followed in second place with 8 points, and Josh Padnos on TWD in third with 14 points. Photos are available on the Cleveland Race Week Facebook page, and complete results are posted at www.clevelandraceweek.com.

VX One fleet at the Silvers Marine Scottish Series

By Jono Shelley

As the ‘newcomer’ to the Class, I agreed to write the event report. Wow what a boat – having never set foot in a VX One before, but having heard very good things, I was not at all disappointed. To set the scene for the perfect bank holiday weekend recipe:
•Beautiful Loch Fyne scenery (hard to beat)
•Famous Tarbert hospitality (new friends and hangovers)
•9 VX Ones (Ovington’s outstanding new sportsboat)
•Sunshine (mostly)
•Force 4-5 (consistently)
•Gusts and shifts (ranging from oscillating to outrageous)
•Tight tactical racing (upwind and downwind)
•15-20knots downhill (nothing could get near the VX’s for speed)

Day 1. The VX One fleet had a shared start with the J70s and this made the starts even more tactical. It turned out that they could point a bit higher but were slower – so key was finding a good lane to leeward. The fleet rarely rounded any of the marks far apart, but Martin Darrar from Howth and his crew on Zhik were fast out of the blocks showing early intent to dominate day one with a 1,1,3 score line. A tricky and gusty wind from the North East gave plenty of opportunity for place changing and with gusts rising into the 20’s it was a sensational ride downwind. Others showing form included family Tait from Loch Earn who finished the day with a 2 & 4, Howard Steavenson with an improving 4,3,2 scoreline and Duncan Hepplewhite and crew on Ovington Boats with a 5,2,1.

Day 2 provided a sunny, stable southerly and more very close racing. After working out what worked and what definitely didn’t work on day 1, it was Jono and Ben Shelley on ‘Robbers Dog’ who won the day with a 1,2,1 score line. Martin Darrar and his crew were never far behind, and often in front, continuing to show their form with a 3,1,2. Hepplewhite also showed some good results along with Tony Lewis of Ullswater Yacht Club in Battlecruiser.

Day 3 was the day of the trapezoid course. With a long, tight, spacer reach and a gusty, variable wind it was a white knuckle ride to the first turning mark. Hepplewhite and his Ovington boats crew were most unlucky reaching the windward mark clear ahead on at least two occasions only to be hit by a big gust and thus having to drop their kite to reach the mark allowing others to catch up. Flat water and big gusts made for top boat speeds, nudging 20 knots, and lots of smiling sailors. Again the Shelley’s won the day, getting the nod in two down wind photo finishes of 3 or 4 boats to count a 1,2,1 score line and nibbling away further at Zhik’s lead. Duncan Hepplewhite had another strong day posting 2,3,2 with Howard Stevenson and Dave Clarke also showing consistent form.

So it was all to play for on day 4 with 3 or 4 boats all in for a shout at winning the event in the sunshine and a cool force 4-5 breeze from the north. In the first race of the day Hepplewhite again rounded first but was quickly overhauled by Steavenson and Darrer who had gybed early into ‘the gust of love’. Howard unfortunately dropped his kite a mark to early letting Darrer sail away and the Shelley’s catch up. Darrer sailed an excellent race and was rarely challenged for 1st with Shelley in second and Steavenson recovering to 3rd.

This left just 1 point in it between Zhik and Robbers Dog so to the final race would decide the championship. Zhik nailed the start and found the turbo button sailing away from the fleet to a commanding and well deserved race and overall victory. Darrer, Nathan Batchelor and Neil Piper were crowned worthy series winners and received some impressive glassware as a result.

My prediction is there will be at least 20 VX Ones sailing at the Scottish next year – a great boat and a great event. (This complete report/results, click here.)

Charleston Race Week

The 20th anniversary edition of Sperry Charleston Race Week wound to a close Sunday with east-southeast winds buffeting the waters around Charleston, SC, offering the 2,500 competitors some of the best racing of the entire three-day event. The rainy forecast didn’t produce any significant moisture until the end of the awards ceremonies after all the sailors were ashore and most of the competitors had started their trips home. Another successful edition of the largest keelboat regatta in the Americas is in the books. The action out on the six race courses that made up this event proved a true challenge for Charleston area sailors as the majority of the nearly 300 entries were from out of town and out of state. And some of the best finishes were posted by teams from out of the country. Nine VX Ones were registered for the event, and nine races were completed. John Potter won seven of those, easily securing first place with 11 points. William Griffin placed second with 18 points, and Bob Maccini took third with 23 points. For full results, visit http://www.yachtscoring.com/event_results_cumulative.cfm?eID=1220.

BVI Spring Regatta and St. Thomas International Regatta to host the all-new VX One Caribbean Cup in 2016

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April 9, 2015 – (Tortola, British Virgin Islands) – In a joint statement today, the St. Thomas International Regatta and BVI Spring Regatta & Sailing Festival announced their partnership with VX One to host the first VX One Caribbean Cup in 2016.  Already plans are underway for 2016 just as the events wrap a successful 2015.

The all-new VX One Caribbean Cup will give racers the opportunity to compete in a VX One one-design class in two of the Caribbean’s most foremost regattas – St. Thomas International Regatta (March 25-27, 2016) and BVI Spring Regatta (April 1-3, 2016).

Currently, 12 boats from the VX One North American class association have committed to participate in this inaugural event and the class expects continued interest. Each regatta event in the VX One Caribbean Cup will be scored separately and winners will be awarded. After all racing concludes a perpetual trophy will be presented at the BVI Spring Regatta awards ceremony to the overall winner of both events.

The new VX One will be an exciting addition for each of the regattas, and organizers are delighted by the entry of a fresh, new class. Judy Petz, Director of BVI Spring Regatta & Sailing Festival, said “We are honored by the overwhelming reception from VX One owners who are prepared to bring their boats. The Caribbean Cup program is a true testament to what can be accomplished with an experienced team and passion for sailing. The BVI Spring Regatta has been developing a professionally run one-design area, with top race officials and courses that will suit these boats really well. We are excited to welcome the pioneers of the class, which we are sure many more will follow.

Bill Canfield, STIR’s Regatta Director, remarked, “St. Thomas International Regatta is thrilled to have the VX One fleet joining our 2016 event. We believe that new classes in the Caribbean are the future of our racing program, so congratulations to VX One for taking the plunge!”

The international racing scene is all too familiar with these regattas, both of which have been highlights on the Caribbean Sailing Association calendar for more than 40 years. They attract racers and spectators from around the world, who return annually for the unparalleled competition, shore side parties and world-renowned Caribbean hospitality.

Tim Pitts, Vice President of VX One Class Association, remarked, “The 2016 VX One Caribbean Cup will be our class’ first international event, and we are thrilled to be associated with these two prestigious regattas. The VX One design is a revolutionary concept, and there is no better way to showcase her capabilities than to host our first international series in the Caribbean. It’s home to the world’s best sailing grounds!”

A native of the USVI, Pitts knows the waters well and participated in both STIR and BVISR seven times before the age of 18. According to Pitts, “The Caribbean offers the ideal sailing conditions for the VX One. The boat is a rocket ship that sails well in 5 knots or 25 knots, and can be raced competitively with a crew of 2 to 3. It was built to deliver inexpensive, high performance sailing and move efficiently around the world. In the past, it has been cost prohibitive to readily move an entire fleet, but the VX One design overcomes these logistical challenges.”

Interested in racing or learning more? Join the conversation on the event’s Official Facebook Page VX One Caribbean Cup , for the latest news, photos, and videos or to connect with other VX One racers. More details regarding registration, logistical arrangements and the overall program will be announced soon.

Press Contacts:
BVI Spring Regatta & Sailing Festival:
Judy Petz Email: info@bvispringregatta.org
St. Thomas International Regattta: Carol +1 340 998 3650
Email: bareuther@earthlink.net
VX One: Tim Pitts – +1 401-419-9010  Email: pitts.timothy@gmail.com

The BVI Spring Regatta and the Sailing Festival is now one of the top three Caribbean sailing events, with an average of 110 yachts per year with 80% of the competitors from overseas. Racing three race courses to provide top race management and course selection for optimal racing.  The BVI Spring Regatta is jointly owned by the Royal BVI Yacht Club and the BVI Chamber of Commerce and Hotel Association, with host sponsor Nanny Cay Resort and Marina.

The St. Thomas International Regatta (STIR), first sailed in 1974, continues into its fourth decade with an exceptional program of serious world class yacht racing that has earned it the status of the ‘Crown Jewel of Caribbean Yacht Racing’. The STIR is renowned for its serious racing reputation that attracts both the latest yacht designs and hottest one-design classes as well as the greatest skippers and crews from across the globe as well as the Caribbean’s hottest rock stars.

The VX ONE is a fresh and exciting sport one-design boat for the international two to three person racing enthusiast. The design concept is born of a careful review of performance one-design demographics within this category worldwide. The VX offers sailors from Junior to Advanced a vehicle for perpetual enjoyment of performance sailing in an affordable, durable, and technically advanced package, and at a realistic price. To learn more about the VX One, visit our site and for more details

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Winter Series Conclusion

14 VX Ones joined into the Sarasota Sailing Squadron One Design Midwinter Regatta. They enjoyed three beautiful days of sailing on Sarasota Bay, sharing a course with MC Scows on Friday and E Scows on Saturday and Sunday. Race Committee did a great job getting the maximum 11 races. Friday was a bit light with 5-8 knots on the course with lighter teams doing very well. The fleet had a big family contingent at this regatta including quite a few parent/child teams and a few spouses sailing together as well. Everyone raced hard all afternoon, finishing around 5 pm, and then the group opted to meet at the Daiquiri Deck for a casual dinner on St. Armands Circle. Saturday brought more breeze than forecasted. Starting out in the same light air, the VX Ones had three races as whitecaps just started to form. The fleet was all tight with some complex mark roundings and passing going on. The fleet was actually pretty close, though it may not have always felt like it. Not much time was spent waiting at the finish. The Bennetts, Jeff Eiber and his crew Lance, and Michael and Anthony Norris were always at the front of the fleet with some local talent using 106. Oklahoma fleet representatives Scott Holmgren and Justin Scott were sailing light but hiking hard and were in the front as well. Paul Currie with Rob Britts and guest sailing three-up along with Joe Ferra and Tim Pitts put in some great races. Notable was Paulo Milko and David Hillmyer always in the game and up front. Gabi Scillinger making her debut sailing with the Walfords and having a great time. Mark Witte brought his returning crew Meghan along with a new crew member. New owners Bob Bilthouse and Don Winston made their boats go well. Gabi once again set everyone up with scheduling information and got lunch, snacks and even beer for the fleet. This was the fourth and final regatta in the VX One Winter Series. Sarasota Sailing Squadron has been a great base of operations for the fleet, and manager Craig Bridges went the extra mile every time. The PRO for three of the regattas, Jonathan Histed, is really dialed in on what it takes to keep it going for the VX Ones on the water. The winners of this regatta were the Bennetts, Jeff Eiber in second and the Norris family third. The Winter Series was won by the Norris family. There was great competition throughout the fleet and more importantly, everyone left with good memories of a great weekend of sailing together. Complete results are available at http://www.regattanetwork.com/event/9368#_newsroom+results.

BACARDI Miami Sailing Week

The last day of racing for the 88th Bacardi Cup and the 6th BACARDI Miami Sailing Week Presented by EFG Bank brought a little change in the weather with overcast skies and scattered showers. The wind also switched directions and was coming out of the NE between 10 and 15 knots. The 164 teams racing in five one-design classes – Star, Viper 640, J/70, VX One and M32 – completed enough races in four different circles for the winners to collect the prizes. In the 22-boat VX One fleet, John Potter won with 35 points followed by fellow Americans Phillip Norris (35 points but one less win) and Philip Hallowell (37 points). “The entire week was great, and (Sunday) we got breeze that wasn’t expected,” said John Potter. “We got lucky on the first wind shift and finished second in the first race. It’s a great place and a great venue. Race Committee did a great job, parties were worthy and we especially loved the weather.” For complete results, visit http://www.yachtscoring.com/event_results_cumulative.cfm?eID=1222.

St. Pete NOOD

Favorable conditions allowed for 11 races in the VX One fleet at the Helly Hansen St. Pete NOOD regatta from February 13-15 in St. Petersburg, Florida. Five VX Ones took to the waters of Tampa Bay, but it was Brian Bennett on VX Racing who rode six bullets to the top of the leaderboard with 22 overall points. Michael Norris’ Flash Rider placed second with 28 points, and Andrew Walford’s Commando third with 31. For complete regatta information and results, visit http://www.sailingworld.com/nood-regattas/st-petersburg.

Christopher Alexander Seizes VX One Midwinter Championship

It was a battle to the last race, and Christopher Alexander came out the victor at the VX One Midwinter Championship hosted by Sarasota Sailing Squadron in Florida. After 10 races, Alexander’s Isabelita Con Queso bested 26 other teams, and added this title to his 2014 North American Championship from last July. Finishing with 34 points and a line of (11),4,2,6,1,4,2,2,6,7, Alexander won by just one point over John Potter, whose 3,5,3 on Sunday fell just short of capturing the victory. Ched Proctor’s Flash Rider placed in the show position with 37 points. With temperatures in the mid-70s and winds at 10-12 knots with gusts to 16, Proctor took the gun in Sunday’s opening race, with Alexander keeping pace in second and Potter just behind. Bill Griffin’s Kill Bill won the next contest, followed by Jeff Eiber and then Phip Hallowell on Chuck Wagon. The final duel was taken by Donovan Brennan’s Island Smuggler, as Proctor and Potter rounded out the top three. Complete results are available by clicking here. Photos are posted on the VX One Class Facebook page.