16 March 2016

Bloopers are back!

From Scuttlebutt USA (15 March 2016 edition):

The 2016 edition of the Offshore Racing Rule (ORR) rating system has been released, with a change that has now made bloopers legal for boats built during the era of bloopers. This was a concern about ORR for many older boats, and ORR has found a way to properly rate them and have thus made them legal.
Italian yacht Vanina leads the charge of blooper-wielding yachts during the 1979 Admiral's Cup
ORR – 2015 Edition
4.01 Bloopers.
Bloopers are prohibited. When a spinnaker is set, no jib shall be tacked in such a way as to cause or permit the luff or forward edge of that sail to lie outside of the spinnaker or spinnaker sheet and, when a spinnaker is set, no sail shall be sheeted to the main boom except the spinnaker itself.

Bloopers tended to keep the bowman busy!

ORR – 2016 Edition
4.01 Bloopers.
The intent of this section is to allow bloopers on boat’s where they were once popular and in the way they were flown. If bloopers generate a pronounced speed benefit, that benefit will be properly assessed and rated in future versions of ORR. All of the following shall apply to boats rating with bloopers:

a) Bloopers are only permitted on boats with an age or series date earlier than Jan 1, 1985.
b) Bloopers are only allowed on boats rated with a spinnaker pole, and not with a bowsprit.
c) Bloopers must measure in as a headsail, since two spinnakers cannot be flown at the same time other than when changing. The LP of the blooper shall not exceed 150% of rated J. The half width must be no greater than 50% of the foot. The luff of the blooper shall not exceed the luff of the largest headsail for which the boat is rated. The tack pennant for a blooper shall not exceed 2.5 feet and must be tacked aft of the forward end of J.
d) The blooper shall be counted as headsail for purposes of the limit on number of headsails carried while racing.

All we need now are some old sailmakers that still know how to make bloopers. For more information on the 2016 ORR… click here.

Bloopers fly during the 1983 Australian Admiral's Cup trials
Bloopers came onto the scene during the 1971 Southern Cross Cup series, when New Zealand's Wai Aniwa hoisted a light air no.1 genoa outside the spinnaker (here). The resulting protest was dismissed, and overnight the blooper became an indispensable part of the IOR racing wardrobe before falling out of favour in the early to mid-1980s.
They may have been detested by some sailors, but they made for some great photographs!
Bravura during the 1984 SORC (photo Larry Moran)

Lady Be (sailing for NZ) leads Scarlett O'Hara (US) during the 1983 Admiral's Cup, by which time the use of bloopers was starting to wane (photo NZ Yachting/Alan Sefton)

15 March 2016

Jamarella (Farr One Tonner)

After sailing the three-year old Daniel Andrieu design Cifraline 3 to a very creditable fifth place in the 1986 One Ton Cup in Palma, Alan Gray commissioned Jamarella, a new Farr One Tonner for the 1987 Admiral's Cup and One Ton Cup. The boat was similar to the New Zealand yacht Propaganda (Design #182), but was a slightly different design (#184), optimised for racing in large fleets in UK conditions, and was particularly fast upwind in light and medium airs. This performance was helped by a deep draft fin keel with a fibreglass tip to avoid the boat becoming too stiff (under the onerous 'centre of gravity factor' measurement of the IOR), but still taking a draft penalty.  

Jamarella was skippered by Rodney Pattisson, who helmed the One Ton Cup champion Jade in 1985, and teamed up with Lawrie Smith (who helmed Panda to her Fastnet win in the 1985 Admiral's Cup), to create a very strong force at the back of the boat. Jamarella was built by Killian Bushe with Nomex honeycomb core. She carried a Sparcraft mast, which was held up with cobalt rigging, and flew a combination of Banks, Shore and Sobstad sails. 
Jamarella during the 1987 British Admiral's Cup trials (photo Seahorse)
Jamarella sailing downwind during the 1987 British Admiral's Cup trials (photo Seahorse/Histoiredeshalfs website)

Jamarella proved to be the most consistent of the new British One Tonners that lined up for the 1987 British Admiral's Cup trials, with three first places in the series, and she joined team Juno and Indulgence in the British team in a determined campaign to wrest the Admiral's Cup back from the Germans, who had triumphed again in 1985.  
Jamarella showing her upwind form (photos Histoiredeshalfs website)
Another view from astern of Jamarella sailing upwind in moderate conditions, with the topmast backstay showing plenty of ease! (photo Seahorse)

Jamarella on a downwind leg during the 1987 British Admiral's Cup trials (photo Seahorse)
She sailed the 1987 Admiral's Cup with a slightly lower rating than Propaganda (30.54ft, to 30.59ft IOR), and the two boats, both sporting the fastest shapes of 1987 and expertly sailed, had a series-long duel, with Jamarella outscoring her Kiwi rival in the first inshore and the Fastnet race, and in the latter demonstrating a slight edge downwind in light airs. The two finished first and second in the Channel Race, separated by just 16 seconds. In the end, Jamarella finished the series second overall, 30 points behind Propaganda (with placings of 14/2/4/24/3), and supporting the British team to second overall in the Cup proper. She was also the top offshore yacht in the series.
Jamarella showing her upwind form during the 1987 Admiral's Cup
Jamarella in close fleet action during the 1987 Admiral's Cup (photo Rick Tomlinson/Seahorse)

Jamarella rounds a windward mark during one of the inshore races on Christchurch Bay (photo Sailing Year 1987-88)
The boat went on to win Class II in the 1987 RORC series, and was named the RORC Yacht of the Year. 
Jamarella - RORC Yacht of the Year 1987 (photo Sailing Year 1987-88)
Jamarella (photo One Ton Facebook page)
She then went to Kiel for the 1987 One Ton Cup, where she finished sixth overall, although she had initially finished third overall following placings of 8/17/5/3/3, but was slapped with a "2 x 30 point" penalty, because of the discovery, on two occasions, of an unsecured five gallon fuel tank. The crew insisted it was spare fuel carried for seamanship reasons in case of a long motor home in a dismasting situation or water in the fuel tank. This became an issue of whether it was a tank under rule 202.2 of the IOR, or 'ship stores' under rule 109.4. In this respect she was perhaps an innocent victim of suspicions of cheating that had come to the fore as a result of allegations (later proven) against the German yacht i-Punkt. 
Jamarella in action during the 1987 Admiral's Cup, and crossing the stern of US yacht Blue Yankee

Rush, ex-Jamarella, during the 1988 One Ton Cup
Jamarella became Rush for the 1988 One Ton Cup in San Francisco, where she finished 11th overall. Alan Gray went on to commission a new Jamarella, a bigger Farr 50-footer, for the 1989 Admiral's Cup and to contest the burgeoning 50-foot circuit
Hitchhiker III ex-Jamarella during the 1989 Admiral's Cup
It is understood that the original Jamarella was chartered by Australian yachtsman, Peter Briggs, of Hitchhiker fame, for the 1989 Admiral's Cup, and the boat became the third yacht to wear the Hitchhiker moniker. Her stern was altered in response to the 1989 IOR rule changes, but Hitchhiker III didn't make the Australian team, and sailed for Ireland instead. A shadow of her former self, she finished in 32nd place (with results of 22/32/34/35/32/28), but was the best placed of the lowly 13th placed Irish team.

In 1995 Hitchhiker III was relocated to Holland and was optimised for the IMS rule - her bumps were removed, the stern was faired and a new keel was fitted. She was renamed ACE, and she went on to become the Dutch National IMS Champion in 1997.  

ACE is presently located in Muiderzand, Holland (photos above and below).

ACE seen more recently (2020) in Boorn, Netherlands (photo Facebook)

8 March 2016

Quarter Ton rebuild news

A couple of Quarter Ton rebuilds have appeared on the "1/4 ton zeilers" page recently - the upgrade to Innuendo (GBR-7557), the ex-Senator Incitatus, looks particularly impressive - this boat is a James McIlraith design, that was bought by Peter Morton in 2015 and is receiving the kind of attention previously applied to the likes of Anchor Challenge and Bullit, and the Half Tonner Swuzzlebubble.

Another impressive upgrade to an old Quarter Tonner - the original bustle in the stern quarters remains evident, but a new IRC-optimised keel has been added
Innuendo now features a simple and highly refined deck layout

Also receiving some love and IRC optimisation is the 1981 Quarter Ton champion, the Jacques Fauroux-designed Lacydon Protis, which is being prepared for the 2016 UK season.

Lacydon Protis in the wild conditions of the 1981 Quarter Ton Cup