Get your 2022 Annual Dinner Tickets Here! – SOLD OUT!

Save the Date! The 2022 Annual Season Dinner will take place at the St. Francis Yacht Club on Friday, November 18, 2022 at 5:30 p.m. in the Starting Line Room. Tickets are $25 per person and that includes dinner and drinks. What a bargain!

Please RSVP asap by paying below as tickets are expected to sell out. See you there!

Dinner tickets have sold out!!!

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Mays DickeyGet your 2022 Annual Dinner Tickets Here! – SOLD OUT!
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Blackaller is back

Thanks to the efforts of numerous individuals and organizations, everyone’s favorite nearly invisible mark is now much easier to locate.

For those who may be new to the bay, YRA 16, otherwise known as Blackaller Buoy, is located just off of Fort Point, and is named for famed Bay Area yachtsman Tom Blackaller, who tragically passed away in 1989 at the age of 49. Tom was a larger-than-life figure in the sailing community not just in the Bay Area but worldwide. 

Blackaller cut his teeth in the Star Class, and after experiencing success locally here on the Bay, he moved into the 6 meter class where he became world champion in 1973. He worked directly with Lowell North as a sailmaker, and parlayed this success up to the pinnacle of sailing, eventually becoming tactician for Russell Long’s upstart America’s Cup campaign Clipper which gave a good run to Dennis Conner’s Freedom.

In addition to a prolific sailing career, Blackaller was a motorsports enthusiast who accomplished a great deal as an amateur race car driver. Tragically, he suffered a heart attack during a race and died.

Blackaller was known not just as a successful sailor but as a colorful personality. Anyone who knew him had a Blackaller story, and after his death a tribute was held by his friends at St. Francis, and many of those tales made their way online.

After his death, St. Francis established the mark to honor his legacy. Since that time, anyone has raced on the bay has experienced the frustration of trying to find this tiny little mark. No longer! Thanks to the efforts of the Army Corp of Engineers, Scott Easom, the St. Francis Yacht Club including Bruce Stone and others, Blackaller Buoy is now cleaner, more secure & more visible, and will continue to confound racers for years to come.

Mays DickeyBlackaller is back
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Awards Night: 2021 is in the books…Plus, MUST SEE TV! (VIDEO)

The 2021 Season is in the books!

On November 20, the fleet gathered at St. Francis Yacht Club for an evening of merriment & a chance to congratulate all of the teams for what was truly an epic year of racing. Fleet Captain Ian Charles hosted the festivities in the Chart Room.

Special thanks to Justin Oberbauer for putting together a video year in review. Give it a watch here!

Congratulations to the season’s podium finishers and to all of the boats that sailed with the most competitive one-design fleet on the Bay!

1st Place: Tim Russell, NeNe
2nd Place: Ryan Simmons, Blackhawk
3rd Place: Ian Charles, MAVERICK
4th Place: Bruce Stone, Arbitrage
5th Place: Jeff Littfin, Mojo

Ryan Simmons shares Blackhawk’s secret to success.

2022 promises to be quite a year for Fleet 1 with the 2022 North American Championship being hosted by the San Francisco Yacht Club on the heels of Big Boat Series.

Mays DickeyAwards Night: 2021 is in the books…Plus, MUST SEE TV! (VIDEO)
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J/105 Doublehanded Winter Series: Register Now!

The J/105 Winter Doublehanded Sunday Series will be held off of the GGYC race deck by PRO Don Weineke.

Why not leave your boat rigged after Jeff Zarwell’s SYC Midwinter Series and sail with your best crew on Sundays? Way fewer sandwiches!

Dates: 11/14,12/12, 2021 & 1/9, 2/13, 2022 

Register at the link below. NOR, SI’s and the Official Notice Board can be found here also. No fee to register!

Mays DickeyJ/105 Doublehanded Winter Series: Register Now!
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2021 Fleet Party – RSVP & Purchase Tickets Here! (Update: SOLD OUT!)

The 2021 Annual Fleet party will be held at St. Francis Yacht Club on November 20th at 6:00pm. Enjoy the famous Taco Buffet as we toast to another wonderful season of sailing in the J/105 Class!

Per St.FYC policy, all guests must be fully vaccinated and be prepared to proof of vaccination at the door.

Dinner Tickets are $20 per person and a cash bar will be available. Purchase your tickets in advance by using the PayPal button below.

Gentlemen: No shorts or hats in the building please.

UPDATE: As of today, Fleet party tickets are SOLD OUT! Please contact the webmaster for possible last minute availability.

Number of Tickets

Fleet #1 Admin2021 Fleet Party – RSVP & Purchase Tickets Here! (Update: SOLD OUT!)
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Oh my GODOT!!! – Springfest Recap

Racing at the St. Francis Yacht Club came roaring back to life this past weekend with the 2021 Springfest Regatta. It’s been more than a year and a half since Fleet 1 hit the city front en masse, and weather conditions didn’t disappoint. Twenty teams brought their A-game to face a strong ebb and solid 15-20 knots of breeze for the two-day 6 race series on May 22nd & 23rd.

Ian Charles and Team MAVERICK drew first blood with a bullet in race 1, followed by a 2nd & 4th place to lead the series after the first day by 1 point over Tim Russell on Ne*Ne. The real story of the day was the heroic port tack start by Ryan Simmons and the Blackhawk crew in race 3. The perfect start at the pin resulted in a horizon job and a bullet to end the first day of racing.

Asked about the brilliant start, Simmons said, “We had been watching the wind shift 30 degrees at the start all day and knew it was a matter of timing. The right had paid huge the last three upwind legs, so the fleet jockeyed for the boat, which left 3 of us fighting for the pin. Godot and Arbitrage were clearly going all-in on port tacking the fleet, but we had positioning and were able to ambush them on starboard at the pin as the gun went off. That move forced two huge ducks and allowed us to start at full speed and layup inside the whole fleet on a huge left shift. From there, it was a drag race to lay line. Clear air is king in this fleet.”

Even more impressive was the return of Phillip Laby and his Godot crew after an almost 18-month hiatus. Godot was dismasted in the 2019 Rolex Big Boat Series, and this was their first A regatta with the new mast. It didn’t take long for this previous 2016 Season and Rolex Big Boat champion to shake off the salt and make his presence known at the top of the fleet with 1st and 2nd place finishes in races 2 & 3.

The fleet headed into Sunday with similar sunny, breezy, and ebb conditions, which made for tough layline calls and tight and precise gybing down the city front. The 20-boat fleet picked their angles carefully, with the rocks on one side and starboard gybe boats on the other. Phillip Laby on Godot continued where he left off on Saturday with a bullet in Race 4 after an impressive pin end start and 2nd in Race 5. Ryan Simmons on Blackhawk wasn’t about to lie down either and produced another bullet in race 5. With one race to go, any of the top 5 boats were in a position to win the regatta, so it all came down to the last race.

Tim Russell on Ne*Ne battled it out with Ian Charles and team MAVERICK with close tacking and gybing duels on each of the 4 legs on the 2 lap windward-leeward course. Neither boat was giving anything away with slam-dunk tacks and tactical deployments of the wing-on-wing maneuver downwind. The overlapped finish saw Ne*Ne take the bullet and the regatta win with MAVERICK in second. MAVERICK tied on points with Godot, but Phillip Laby’s 2 bullets vs. 1 for MAVERICK in the series broke the tie. Welcome back Godot!

“Who ordered the Samurai Douse?” 

Elsewhere in the fleet, Charlie Pick & his crew on Box of Rain spent the weekend identifying weakened gear after a year of COVID. On Saturday, their main fine-trim control decided it was going on strike & ripped itself completely off its pedestal. After some quick jury-rigging, the race was back on, at least until the spinnaker halyard cover rudely parted itself from the well-meaning core during the last race. Thus, it was time for the dreaded Samurai Douse

Luckily, this was the least traumatic samurai douse that has ever occurred on the bay. The kite came down gently, new parts are in the works, and the Box will live to sail another day. The MFO Charlie is presently seeking volunteers to go up the stick. A kangaroo court to identify the crew member who ordered the samurai douse will take place later this week. All signs point to the bowman.

Special mention goes to Bruce Stone and Nicole Breault on Arbitrage for abandoning their efforts in race 3 to pick up a sailor from another J/105 who had fallen overboard. This was a true example of the Corinthian spirit that exists in this class.

Arbitrage was awarded redress and a 2nd place finish in race 3 for their efforts to keep a bad situation from turning worse. Thank you, Bruce Stone and Nicole Breault.

Next on the calendar for the season is SFYC’s June Big Fleet Invitational to be held on the Berkeley Circle on June 12-13. See you there!

Mays DickeyOh my GODOT!!! – Springfest Recap
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Chalk Talk: Berkeley Circle Strategy w/ Brent Draney

Blackhawk Tactician & Fleet 1 stalwart Brent Draney was kind enough to share some of his encyclopedic knowledge of the moves to make on the Berkeley Circle after SFYC’s Resin Regatta which took place on April 17-18. Brent shows us how the valuable tool RaceQs can provide insight into the good, the bad, and the ugly after your race.

Takeaways from the video include how to prepare to race on the circle with your forecast, what to look for when considering which side of the course to choose, and a few tactical situations around the marks. It’s worth a watch!

The video is available here!

Fleet members can upload their data to RaceQs onto the website and analyze individual races with the site’s powerful analytics. You can use your cell phone, your Velocitek, or any other GPS tracking tools. The tool is only as valuable as the racer’s willingness to upload their tracks, so Fleet members are strongly encouraged to do so! If you have any questions about the site, send me an email!

Mays DickeyChalk Talk: Berkeley Circle Strategy w/ Brent Draney
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J/Go Recap: Fleet 1, Checking In

“Race Committee, this is San Francisco Fleet 1 checking in…”

Ok, sports fans, it’s officially that time of year. The season is now officially in full swing and your humble correspondent has been a slacker about posting event recaps. But, hey, better late than never, right?

The 2021 season’s first season counter took place on March 20-21, and Justin Oberbauer aboard Strangelove was kind enough to author this excellent recap of the event.

Take it away, Justin:

Well here we are! It’s finally March 2021 and so nice to be back on the water as a Fleet kicking off our 2021 Fleet 1 Championship Season and bringing back a bit of normalcy to our lives. The conditions and the competition did not let us down and it felt like everybody showed up with their A-Game.

J/Go Regatta, hosted by Sausalito Yacht Club and supported by PRO Jeff Zarwell and his team kicked us off on March 20-21. Conditions were pretty perfect with sunny skies, shifty, puffy 10-15K winds and moderate ebb creating some tricky tactical considerations and exciting opportunities for lead changes. The 6 races were a combination of our standard double sausages and longer bay-tour style courses that took the fleet out the gate to Pt Diablo. Overall, 16 boats showed up across the two days.

Saturday started in typical style with two standard double sausage courses. A moderate late ebb on the north side biased the course with most boats fighting for the boat end and the ability to tack out to right first. NeNe took line honors in both, with Blackhawk coming a close second. 

Race three took the fleet out the gate to Pt. Diablo with the majority of the fleet working the left side in a stronger breeze. MAVERICK led the run, with several 20+knot puffs and big swells making for some great surfing conditions. At the bottom mark, the big decision was which way to go back up wind, Alcatraz to starboard or port?  MAVERICK and Blackhawk chose starboard, working the south edge of the Alcatraz cone, while NeNe and Akula came in from the North. The south breeze was strong and it was looking very good, until boats started poking out from the north side. The right boats made up significantly with NeNe, Akula and Arrived climbing back capture 2, 4 and 6 respectively, but ultimately MAVERICK’s lead was too great and she held on for the win.

Sunday was almost a mirror image of Saturday. Winds were a bit more westerly on day two and the Race committee set-up a bit further south to balance the favored side a bit more. But the ebb still played a major role as boats in the current were generally more advantaged. In race three Blackhawk again demonstrated their expertise in managing the currents with a horizon job on the fleet, working the city front flood while the rest worked the light air in the ebb in the center of the bay.  

In the end it was NeNe, Blackhawk and MAVERICK topping the leaderboard followed by Akula and Arbitrage. Special mentions for top 5 finishes go to Mojo, Alchemy, Strangelove, and Jam Session. 

Full Results Posted Here!!!

Mays DickeyJ/Go Recap: Fleet 1, Checking In
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RegattaPro Midwinters: Playing with a loaded gun

Playing With A Loaded Gun
By Ian Charles, Fleet Captain

The Regatta Pro Mid-Winter One Design Series wrapped up its final weekend under sunny skies, brisk temps, and strong breeze. With over 20 boats seeking overall honors in the series, the top contenders came prepared to do battle and left it all on the water.


The 8 race series on the Berkeley Circle brought a wide variety of conditions from super light & shifty and complex currents to breeze-on and big ebb chop.

Over the course of the three day series, we saw cameo appearances from former fleet champion Ryan Simmons, who teamed up with current season champion Tim Russell, and Quantum Sails top gun Jeff Thorpe.

The final day of the series started with a brief postponement, but the breeze soon filled in from the west and quickly hit 14-15 knots before the first gun. After a tight start, Russian Roulette rounded the top mark first with MAVERICK & NeNe close at their heels. As the breeze freshened on the two-lap windward-leeward course, the top boats’ battle continued with Jam Session joining in the mix, but at the finish line, it was Russian Roulette who took the photo finish win over NeNe with MAVERICK coming in a close third.

The excitement continued in race two–if you thought the game of Russian Roulette is played with one bullet in the gun, think again. Once again, the top boats at the windward mark were the trio of Roulette, NeNe and MAVERICK. While the top group appeared to distance themselves from the rest of the fleet, it was tight sailing throughout with multiple close finishes at the line. In the end, we learned that Russian Roulette was now being played with two bullets as they took their second consecutive race win in race 2. NeNe and MAVERICK rounded out the top 3 with Bruce Stone and Nicole Breault in fourth.

With the breeze now building into the low 20’s, a couple of participants called it a day, and some will be calling their sailmakers in the days and weeks ahead. It wouldn’t be J/105 racing without at least one general recall. The fleet stayed true to form as the building ebb and rising adrenaline levels pushed most of the boats over the line before the gun in race three. After a successful start under the Z flag and a ripping ebb, it was a game of tight crosses and calling lay lines at both ends of the course. The big breeze and choppy conditions made for some great downwind blasts and emphasized precise boat handling. We did see Russian Roulette try and build the picket fence, but they didn’t have a third bullet in the chamber. NeNe took the the win for the race and the overall series victory with MAVERICK in second and Russian Roulette in 3rd for the race and regatta.

Congratulations and thank you to all who participated. A special thank you to Jeff Zarwell for producing a great event (8 races in 3 days of racing) with a thin staff of volunteers and some uncertain conditions along the way. Thank you!

Next Stop: J/Go

We are all looking forward to seeing you on the water next weekend for the Fleet 1 Season Opener at the Sausalito Yacht Club. The J/Go regatta will happen on March 20 & 21 and is a season counter for the annual fleet rankings.         

Register now!

Mays DickeyRegattaPro Midwinters: Playing with a loaded gun
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Pi Day Doublehanded Regatta: Register Now!

J/105 doublehanders and math nerds rejoice: registration for the Pi Day Regatta is now open! On March 14, PRO Don Weineke and Regatta Chair Bruce Stone will host competitors off the race deck of GGYC for the latest installment of the 2021 doublehanded series. Nicole Breault will be baking a delicious pie for the winner. Register Now!

Mays DickeyPi Day Doublehanded Regatta: Register Now!
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