Proving that the J/109 is still the boat to beat in IRC, Team RUSH continued their winning ways by handily winning IRC Class 4 at the recent Storm Trysail Club’s IRC East Coast Championships held in Annapolis November 3-5th. Earlier in the year, Bill Sweetser and team won their IRC class at the New York YC Annual Regatta in Newport. Here are some notes from Bill:
“It was cold! 37 degrees on Friday and 29 degrees on Saturday. We sailed with a 145% genoa and a 120 sq m chute. That gave us an IRC rating of 1.042. We had nine crew members including me. The breeze was exceptionally light for this regatta. Water was pretty flat. The PRO hoped to have 7 races (a 32 mile distance race on Friday and 3 windward-leewards on Saturday and again on Sunday) but it turned out that there was not enough wind to race on Saturday and we were only able to get two races in on Sunday because of light wind.
RUSH was second in Race 1 and first in Races 2 and 3. We were initially worried about the Beneteau10Rs because we thought they would perform well in the light stuff. In Race 1, the distance race, RUSH was second to a 10R, HORSEWEED, by just two seconds on corrected time in a 5 ½ hour race. If I had not been shivering so much we probably would have won! A second 10R, MOON RACER, was third in that race, over 4 minutes behind RUSH on corrected time. The 10Rs were rated 1.025 and 1.026 respectively. The Grand Soleil 37 finished fifth. Her rating was 1.043 and we beat her by over seven minutes. Breeze was in the four to 8 knot range on Friday.
In Race 2, a 3 ½ mile windward-leeward on Sunday, we beat HORSEWEED by four minutes in a one hour race in a three to six knot breeze. We finished about five minutes ahead of MOON RACER who was third and nine minutes ahead of the GS 37 who was fifth. Race 3 was near the end of the day on Sunday. Wind was around two to four knots. We won the one hour race and beat MOON RACER who was third, by three minutes and the GS 37, who was fourth, by five minutes. HORSEWEED ran out of breeze and did not finish.
Our wins weren’t all just related to boat speed. Mike Hobson did an excellent job of keeping us in the little breeze that there was and we were able to keep the boat moving.”