Friday, July 22, 2011

Make time to watch Governor's Cup (Edited)

The Governor's Cup 21 was strategically placed this week in front of the Sterling BMW dealership on West Coast Highway.
"Someone is sailing with their head out of the boat, what a great idea," I thought as I drove south on West Coast Highway toward Balboa Yacht Club.
At the club, I saw something I hadn't seen before: all of the sponsors' banners, flags and decals were presented professionally. The feeling that something special was about to happen overcame me. I quickened my step down to the waterfront.
All 12 of the Governors Cup 21s were lined up off the main dock with many of the participants viewing the boats for the first time with their hands in their pockets. Speaking of viewing, there are many ways for you to see this year's race, which started Wednesday and ends Sunday. The odds are good that you will be able to view most of the race from Balboa Pier.
If you are more of an armchair helms person, go to BYC's website and click on the spinning Governor's Cup link. You will be able to watch "live" streaming of the event and follow the event on Facebook and Twitter.
Should you want to get the true taste of the event, watch the stream and head over to BYC to watch the participants return to the club around 5:30 p.m. each day. This is always one of the fun parts of this event because the participants start to relax and interact with each other.
Now, let's look under the cabin sole and talk about who is going to win the 45th Governor's Cup International Junior Match Racing Championship.
When these kids are on the water it's "game on," the black flag is raised and there are no prisoners in match racing. Who is going to win? I have no idea, because the field is too close to call. Therefore, I am going to pull for the home team and hope that the mojo lands in the cockpit of the BYC team.
This team consists of Helmsman Ryan Davidson, Middle Walker Banks and Bow Brandon Wood. I had an opportunity to talk to Ryan before the Governor's Cup, and I could feel the positive energy around him.
I asked him what it was going to take to win the race.
"Stay positive and keep working," he replied. "It's going to come down to boat handling and we have an outstanding team again this year."
I have watched this team grow up around the club, and if they take the first few matches and just let it happen, they will bring the heat with them in Sunday's finals.
This weekend I will sail in the "Two Around Catalina" race with Dan Rosen and his boat, Problem Child.
I can already feel the mojo just dripping from us, and the forecast looks promising for this time of year. Also note that the dredging equipment has arrived in town. I also caught wind that the 2012 Ensenada Race will change its headquarters to the Coral Marina next year.
Sea ya.
LEN BOSE is an experienced boater, yacht broker and boating columnist.

Please comment if you like the "Len Bose unedited" version better. 

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Balboa Yacht Clubs "2011 Governor's Cup" Newport Beach

While working my way around the Harbor this week one of the first things I noticed was the Governors Cup 21 strategically placed in front of Sterling BMW.  ‘Someone is sailing with their head out of the boat, what a great idea” I thought to myself as I drove south on PCH towards Balboa Yacht Club, BYC. On arrival at the club all of the sponsors banners, flags and decals had a certain professional presentation I had never witnessed before. The feeling that something special was about to happen quickly came over me and I quicken my step down to the waterfront.
All twelve of the Governors Cup 21’s were lined up off the main dock with many of the participants viewing the boats for the first time with their hands in their pockets as if there were viewing a new BMW X6 at the dealership. Speaking of viewing, there are many ways for you to keep in contact with the race this year. The race takes place from July 19-24 and will be sailed just off the Balboa Pier. The odds are good that you will be able to view most of the race from the pier. If you are more of an armchair helmsperson go to BYC web site at and click the spinning Governors Cup link. From there you will be able to watch “Live” streaming of the event and follow the event on Facebook and Twitter. Should you want to get the true taste of the event watch the stream and head over to BYC to watch the participants return to the club around 5:30 each day. This is always one of the fun parts of this event because the participants are starting to relax and interact with each other and the feeling of Corinthian spirit overwhelms the club.
So much for the fluff of the event, lets look under the cabin sole and talk about who is going to win the 45th Governor’s Cup International Junior Match Racing Championship. When these kids are on the water its “game on”, the black flag is raised and there are no prisoners in match racing. Who is going to win? I have no idea, the field is to close to call and when I ask my sources, “who is going to win”, they just kind of look at me with a blank “Prozac” stare. Therefore, I am going to pull for the home team and hope the mojo lands in the cockpit of the BYC team. This team consists of Helmsman Ryan Davidson, Middle Walker Banks and Bow Brandon Wood. I had a chance to talk to Ryan before the event and I could feel the positive energy around him. When I asked him “what’s it going to take to win” he replied “ Stay positive and keep working. It’s going to come down to boat handling and we have an outstanding team again this year”. I have watched this team grow up around the club and if they take the first few matches and just let it happen they will be bringing the heat with them in the finials on Sunday.
I will be sailing in the “Two Around Catalina” race this weekend with Dan Rosen and his boat “Problem Child”. I can already feel the mojo just dripping from us and the forecast looks promising for this time of year. Also note the dredging equipment has arrived in town. I also caught wind that the 2012 Ensenada Race will change its headquarters to the Coral Marina next year.

Sea ya

The Newport Beach California Beneteau Dealer wants to introduce you to the Sense 50 & 43

The Beneteau Sense 50 & 43 will be know as boats before their time. The large cockpits, open salons, roller furling, electric winches, dock and go system will set the standard in the sailboat market for the next decade.
As an associate salesperson for South Coast Yachts I have been given the opportunity to represent Beneteau Yachts in Newport Beach California. I have been a yacht broker for 23 years and selling Beneteau sailboats is not something new to me. In fact, I have been advising my clients towards the Beneteau product from day one back in 1988.
The best feature about recommending the Beneteau product line is that it makes me look really smart and has produced a VERY long list of clients/good friends into the world of yachting.
Beneteau has recently introduced the SENSE 50 & 43 into the boating market and after spending a week crawling around, demonstrating the “Dock and Go”, sailing, and just relaxing in these spacious cockpits. I am overly confident that the Beneteau line will continue to make me look smart and my friends will continue to grow at a rapid pace.
Please make an appointment to see the Beneteau “SENSE 50 & 43” today. I will open the boat up and it will do all the talking.

Beneteau First 30 Newport Beach California.

If you are like me you have spent many hours racing around our local islands with the dream of someday racing double or single-handed in a Mini 6.5, Open 40, 50. Then reality sets in, I can’t just pack up leave the wife and kids at home and head over to Europe for a two-year campaign.

You continue to watch the Mini Transat and other Open events and look for ways to purchase a boat and bring it to the West Coast. The cost of shipping blows the equation out of the water and you notice the open boats have a hard time sailing to their rating. Next thing that happens is your kids come up to you and ask when is the next time we can go to Catalina?

Is this just me or is it you also?

Don’t look now but Beneteau has done it again by providing a boat that can race and when you get to your destination you want to stay on the boat. With the help of Juan K design you can now complete your dreams by sailing an open style boat and have the interior where the crew/family wants to spend the weekend on the boat. I like to use the example: While talking with your spouse, the boat will be referred to as “Our Boat” rather than “Your Boat”.

If you have the same dream as me, give me a call and we will set up a viewing of the First 30.

Len Bose
(714) 916-0200

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

It has been 'epic' times in Newport Harbor

The word "epic" best describes our harbor last weekend.
The Balboa Yacht Club's "Club Championships" could not have gone any better.
"On a night like this, it is completely apparent to me why we belong to a yacht club and why we enjoy it so much," BYC Commodore Peter Bretschger was quoted as saying at the awards ceremony.
The tradition continues at BYC for coming up with innovative ideas to promote the sport of sailing.
"It's not that often when you can get 5- to 80-year-old members on the same race course," I told the crowd as the chairman.
"I really hope that the other sailing clubs in the harbor have their own events next year and add their own ingredients to this format," I continued.
This year's BYC Club Champions, and parking space holders, are Chris Nesbitt, Walker Banks and Brandon Wood. Our Masters Champions are Alan Andrews, Molly Lynch and Judi Gorski. The Family Champs are the Davidson Family with Nancy, Gary, Bayley and Ryan.
Congratulations must be given to the winners and everyone who competed in these events. I also must give a big shoutout to Alan Andrews and Molly Lynch for competing in all three events and finishing with a first in Masters, second in Family and second in Club Championships.
The Newport High-Point Series is coming down to the last two races, and it's still anyone's race.
The Radical Departure is in fourth place with 30 points. The Lickity Split is in third place with 33 points, and the Adios is in second with 39 points. That leaves John Szalay's Pussy Cat in the lead with 42 points.
I gave John a call last week to see how his crew is holding up to all the pressure of trying to repeat as the top PHRF boat in our harbor.
"We are doing fine, Len," John replied with his unique kind of chuckle.
The Pussy Cat's crew members are Carol Kokol, who has teamed up with John for more than 25 years. Other crew members are Gabriel Nestor, Jessy Rivera, Rob Daugherty and Jason Dyogi, who have been around for eight years or so. The Pussy Cat team competes in Thursday night beer cans and most of our harbor's PHRF events.
Team Pussy Cat — or "Team Kitty," as I like to call them — has won the Newport-to-Ensenada race for the last three years, but the crew will have its hands full in the Argosy Regatta. The event from Sept. 17 to 18 is the last two races of the Newport High-Point Series.
Argosy has changed venues this year with a race to Two Harbors on Catalina on Sept. 17, and returning to Newport on Sept. 18. With all the fleets sailing the same course and the results coming down to handicap times, Team Kitty is going to have to show up with its game face on and try to leave the "Microbrew Fest" early on Saturday night.
Sea ya!
LEN BOSE is an experienced boater, yacht broker and boating columnist.

The Holy Grail of yacht racing is underway

The Transpacific Yacht Race, simply known as the "Transpac," is the Holy Grail of yacht racing on the West Coast. The course starts in San Pedro and ends at Diamond Head, which is outside of Honolulu, on the Hawaiian island of Oahu —2,225 nautical miles away.

There is a tremendous amount of history to this event and much of this history centers around Newport Harbor. Monday, July 4, marked the start of the 46th biennial race to Hawaii. The first race was in 1906.

I went around town this week and asked questions about the race to a few of the Transpac veterans we have in our harbor. I first stopped by to see Dave Ullman. He was getting ready to make his 11th Transpac crossing aboard the Holua, a Santa Cruz 70.

"This is the best crew I have ever sailed this race with," Dave told me. "The race plays out within the first 36 hours. And if you hook up with group of boats on Day 3 and you are in the lead, it only gets better."

Dave sailed his first Transpac in 1963 aboard his father's boat, the Legend, which was recognized as one of the first "light displacement" boats to a first in class and 10th overall. The yacht had a long history at the Balboa Yacht Club and won the 1957 Transpac with Charles Ullman at the helm.

When I asked Dave what keeps bringing him back to the race, he replied: "It's the premier race on the West Coast and I have had some exciting finishes over my 11 races."

My next stop was with Tom Corkett.

Tom won the race overall in 1963 aboard the Islander. His Transpac victory that year is one of the classic stories. The way I understand it, Tom walked out of the Newport Harbor Yacht Club one afternoon, recruited five of his friends, and won the race. He was only 21.

Tom has raced in 14 Transpacs and has won his class many times over the years. He was aboard the Windward Passage in the famous 1977 race, and was dismasted in 1967 aboard the Salacia, his Cal 48.

"We were winning the race with 700 miles to go and we stuffed the spinnaker pole into the water," Tom said. "We jury-rigged the boat and still beat a couple of boats to the finish line."

When I asked him about what was his most memorable part of the race, he replied: "Your first land sight. There is nothing better."

My last stop was with Bob Dickson who has sailed in 16 Transpacs. He started in 1953. Bob's most memorable race was in 1965 aboard the Ticonderoga.

"We won the race, first to finish, with a 29-year-old," Bob told me.

The 1965 Transpac was one of the truly great Honolulu races with one of the closest finishes. Only five minutes separated Ticonderoga from the runner-up, the Stormvogel.

When I asked Bob what was the best part of the race, he replied: "Just finishing in Hawaii."

I will be back next time — my column now runs every other week — with an update of the race and the start of one of the classic battles in Transpac history. For more information on this year's race, go and look for the race tracker.

Sea ya!

LEN BOSE is an experienced boater, yacht broker and boating columnist.

Musing about moorings

I was going through the mooring field in front of the Balboa Yacht Club this week and the thought of doing a mooring update came to mind. So, I headed back into the harbor to make some observations and ask some questions.

One of the first things I noticed was that the members of the Newport Mooring Assn. still feel like their bottoms were cleaned with steel wool pads. They are still feeling the hurt from their loss of time and promises made to them.

"That's old news," I then said to myself.

What's going on now and what is my mooring permit worth? I asked a couple of people around town, and with little to no transactions taking place, the best estimate I can provide is $500 per foot — down from $1,000 per foot this time last year.

The waiting list has not changed, and with two permit transfers allowed within the next 10 years, I do not see that list changing anytime soon. There are now just under 200 people on the list.

I thought it would be a good time to update the list by allowing people on the list to pick a size range and location of the mooring they desire. This way, if you want to be in the vicinity of your yacht club or in front of your home, you might have a better chance of getting a mooring you would use.

For many reasons, I feel that people should pay an annual fee to keep their names on the list. I also wonder how the city is going to determine the value of the mooring equipment, and pass that cost along when a mooring permit has expired. These two topics have been tabled for now but should be reviewed every year to provide clarity and continuity between City Council elections.

While traveling through the different mooring fields, I noticed that the "neighborhood" has been cleaned up since the daily rent increase went from $5 a day to $20 for mooring use. I then noticed quite a few boats with more than one dinghy tied alongside.

This made ask how many dinghies can a mooring permit holder keep tied to their boat. I received two different answers and am still awaiting a ruling on if the city ordinance of keeping one 14-foot vessel tied to your boat, while you are aboard, and to your mooring while you are away, is still in effect.

I then asked the Harbor Department and City/Harbor Resources what the boat owners could do to make their jobs easier.

The Harbor Department said that keeping your mooring floats up to date with the new pad eye, rather than the old system, will keep your boat from breaking free in heavy weather — and cleaning the ball every so often would also be a big help.

City/Harbor Resources answered my question by requesting that harbor users keep an eye open for unusual behavior, and notify the Harbor Resources Department if something looks out of place. Also, try to get along with your neighbors and settle any disputes regarding overhang, rather than just picking up the phone and filing a complaint.

Next month, you will start to notice the dredging equipment arriving in Newport Beach to start on the Rhine Channel on Aug. 1. If you keep your boat in this area of the harbor, you can contact City/Harbor Resources to receive e-mail updates on this project.

Remember that next weekend is the Balboa Yacht Club Championships and the Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club's Angelman Series No. 1, part of the Newport Harbor's High Point Series.

The distinguished Newport High Point Series burgee is still up for grabs and it's anyone's race. I will also have the New 2011 Beneteau First 30 on display the next couple of weeks.

So please contact me if you would like to have a look at this pretty new racer/cruiser. I promise I will not clean your bottom with a steel wool pad.

Sea ya!

LEN BOSE is an experienced boater, yacht broker and boating columnist.

There was a tremendous amount of activity in the harbor this week, so let's get started.

While attending Wednesday's Harbor Commission meeting, I was saddened to learn that Don Lawrenz has termed out as a harbor commissioner. Known as the "smart guy with long words," Lawrenz understands water quality issues and how to best protect our harbor.

From my seat in the Council Chambers, it was obvious that Don has a passion for boating and was more than willing to volunteer and make a difference within our harbor. While the commissioners said their goodbyes City Councilwoman and Harbor Commission liaison Nancy Gardner informed the group that Lawrenz has been appointed to the Tidelands Management Committee, which is good news.

A little later in the meeting, it was mentioned that Brad Avery was on the short list to fill Commissioner Lawrenz's seat. I have known Brad for a long time, and I cannot think of anyone more qualified to fill Don's shoes than Brad Avery.

Harbor Resource Manager Chris Miller has been working extremely hard at the task of dredging the Rhine Channel. You should start to notice the dredging equipment arriving in town just after the Fourth of July weekend. Dredging will start Aug. 1.

Please understand that the only time the city can dispose of this toxic sediment to put it to use in the Long Beach project is in August.

Without Long Beach there would be no Rhine Channel dredging at this time. I have a request for my readers: If you have an empty dock, please call Chris Miller at (949) 644-3034[Corrected: the phone number]. Chris might be able to put you in contact with some of the boat owners that will be looking for temporary space, while the dredging is going on in the channel.

At Wednesday's meeting, John McCullough gave a presentation about the proper disposal and recycling of discarded fishing lines. For more information on this topic, look up the BoatU.S. Foundation's "Monofilament Recycling Program" and watch the video. John is trying to improve our harbor, so please take a look!

I am sure you all remember that Balboa Yacht Club's Club Championships will be sailed Friday in Andrews 21s. Please come down to BYC and watch our Masters and Family Club Championships from the main dock.

The Masters starts at 2 p.m. and the Family Club at 6 p.m. I am chairing this event and plan to emcee the event from the race tower, with a cannon going off for the winner of each race and people cheering on their favorite teams. So if you are wondering what all the noise is about, please come on down and join us.

While at the club, please take some time to inspect the new Beneteau First 30. Let me if you would like to go out for a test sail next week with us.

This Saturday is Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club's Angelman Series No. 1, which is a part of the Newport High-Point Series. The scoring is very close, with the Pussy Cat holding a slim lead over the Adios.

It's still anyone's race, and if the Amante, Dare, Lickity Split and Pendragon show up on the starting line this Saturday, we could have a new leader for Newport Harbor's best PHRF boat.

Becky Lenhart, BYC's sailing administrator and one of my favorite people in the harbor, wanted me to report that the communication between the different clubs and the charter fleet has never been better.

"The charter fleet is going the extra mile in making their intentions clear, and we are reciprocating by doing our best to contact them," Becky told me.

Everyone should also mark their calendars for the annual coordination meeting between charter fleet and the yacht clubs for noon on June 21 at the Council Chambers, 3300 Newport Blvd.

Sea ya!

LEN BOSE is an experienced boater, yacht broker and boating columnist.

Wind blows in some serious racing

I hope you have had a chance to see if your dog is still chained up in the backyard because it's been windy. Last week's "Around Catalina" race was exciting, and I was glad to see the big breeze not come in until Sunday afternoon after we had finished the race.

While cleaning up Glenn Highland's "Bien Roulee," the crew sat down for a cold beverage to watch the 30 knots of breeze come rolling down the bay from one of the moorings in front of the Balboa Yacht Club. I assume most of my readers are experienced yachtsmen who prepare for the day and the challenge before them. Therefore, I am not going to preach to the choir. But it is always exciting at the bottom end of the harbor when the wind picks up with a vengeance.

The Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club's (BCYC) "Around The Islands Race" will take place June 10-12. This year the race goes around Santa Barbara Island and Catalina Island the "right way" by taking both islands to port.

Each year, the course changes from rounding the Islands to port then starboard. Last year's event was the inaugural race, and it turned out to be one of our harbor's best races of the season.

David Janes chartered the RP 66 "Akele" and set the course record at 18 Hours and 24 minutes and the best corrected time was won by Davis Pilsbury's pristine Cal 40 "Ralphie" with a time of 22 hours and six minutes.

At first glance, it appears that BCYC has stepped up its game and the entry list looks strong again this year. The boats to beat this year will be Dr. Laura's new Kernan 47 "Katana" and the R/P 50 "Blue Blazes." I am going to place my money down on a local favorite, "Flaca," a Santa Cruz 50 owned by Paul Casanova. BCYC knows how to throw a party, so be sure to check this race out at It's still not too late to sign up.

I took some time to go around the Harbor this week and try to make contact with our local yacht clubs' sailing administrators and ask them questions. Newport Harbor Yacht Club was the only club able to respond before deadline.

Question: How has attendance been this year, so far, for sailing events, junior sailing, and cruises?

Answer: Attendance at NHYC has been great this year. We had a record turn-out for our Opening Day ceremonies, our spring junior sailing program is running at full capacity and our senior sabot group is very active and has just hosted their first regatta of the season.

Q.: Any upcoming fundraisers?

A.: On July 8, NHYC will host a Summer White Party to raise money for the Newport Harbor Sailing Foundation.

Q.: Next big events on your Calendar?

A.: Next up on our racing calendar is the Baxter Bowl Regatta, for Finn and Star Class Boats on June 11-12. On the junior side, the Summer Gold Cup on July 9-10 will be a great warm-up for Junior Sabot Nationals, which will be held at NHYC from July 8-11.

Q.: Recent achievements by a member ?

A.: Last month, Tyler Macdonald won the 29er Pacific Coast Championship.

Q.: Is there anything that the boating public can do to make your job easier?

A.: Enter events early. It will usually save you a hassle at check-in and will likely save you from paying unnecessary late fees. Additionally, entering early is a great way to ensure that you help to create a successful event. The more names there are on a entry list weeks before the regatta starts, the more excitement will be created which will drive entries up further. I think we can all agree that more boats on the start line is more fun for everyone.

Sea ya.

LEN BOSE is an experienced boater, yacht broker and boating columnist.

Fun had all around on opening day

This week I had an opportunity to talk with another favorite sailor of mine, Betty Andrews, who invited me aboard her Bristol Ranger 33, the Antares. The pride she has in this boat is equivalent to grandparents' pride in their grandchildren.

Betty made eight trips to Catalina last season for roughly a total of 35 days.

"We had some of the best sailing last season that I ever recall," Betty said.


You have to understand that she is one of the few sailors who not only sails home from Catalina, but also sails to weather going to the island.

"Why not?" she told me. "If the wind is up, it's time to go sailing. We had to reef the main five out of the eight trips we made last year."

It is really cool to watch the Antares sail into Catalina at White Cove and within an hour have the canopy up, the flopper stopper deployed, and cold beverages in all the crew's hands. Kind of makes you want to buy a boat.

Opening day

May 7 was opening day for most of our harbor's yacht clubs.

It was the fastest 12 hours of fun I have had in a while.

I arrived at Balboa Yacht Club at 8 a.m. to serve as a judge in the club's yacht inspections. About the same time, the Lido Isle Yacht Club was starting its ceremonies with a parade down the streets of Lido Isle. As I drove past the South Shore Yacht Club and the Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club, the parking lots were filling up fast with their members.

The day could not have started out any better for me. I was teamed up with Nissa Myer as my partner to judge sailboats 40-feet and under. A smile came to my face when we were assigned to inspect Doris and Don Stoughton's boat, the Lioness. I had seen Don on the boat every day after his return from the Newport-Ensenada race, and I knew he had done all the work himself.

Doris was placing the finishing touches onboard Lioness when Nissa and I approached and asked for permission to come aboard. After an hour-long inspection it was obvious that the Stoughtons were ready for the 2011 yachting season.

Before leaving a vessel I have inspected, I make it a routine to ask the first mate where the lifejackets and first aid kit are located, which VHF channel should he use in case of an emergency, and can he read the GPS and give latitude and longitude over the VHF.

It's just one of my silly ideas to make sure everyone is ready for the season.

Now for the awards

The hours were flying by and Balboa Yacht Club Commodore Peter Bretschger started the award ceremonies. This is always a favorite part of opening day because people are starting to loosen up and have way "too much fun."

The awards were announced.

The winners included: Odyssey, owned by Susan and Skip Kenney, which tied with Huck Finn, owned by Linda and Drew Lawler, for the award for sportfisher over 40 feet; Time Out, owned by Chris Webb, for sportfisher under 40 feet; Promotion, owned by Paul Blank, for powerboat under 40 feet; Kamakani, owned by Diane and Michael Coon, for sailboat over 40 feet; Fleur de Mer, owned by Wendy and Dennis Potts, for sailboat under 40 feet; Honeymaker, owned by Baret Yahn, for powerboat under 20 feet; and Dorado, owned by Derek New, for vintage boat.

New's Dorado also won the award for best overall boat, which is the best part of the day.

When Commodore Bretschger said, "I really want one of these custom burgees someday, maybe next time. This year overall award goes to Derek New and his boat Dorado," the whole family jumped out of their seats.

The tradition continues in our harbor. Have a great season, everyone. It is time to go yachting. Follow me on Twitter @boseyachts for your daily harbor observations.

Sea ya!

LEN BOSE is an experienced boater, yacht broker and boating columnist.

It's open season for yacht clubs

he end of March marks the Return of the Swallows at Mission San Juan Capistrano. And in Newport Harbor, the end of April marks the return of "the whining of buffers."

That means it's Opening Day for the harbor's yacht clubs, and the whining buffers are those getting their boats ready for the upcoming season and their clubs' opening day yacht inspections. On Saturday, the Newport Harbor Yacht Club (NHYC) opened the season with a keel boat race from Los Angeles Harbor to Newport

On Wednesday, I ran into Gordon "Gordo" Johnson at the Basin Shipyard. He said they had a fantastic opening day race aboard Odyssey.


"We were in the last start and held the westerly breeze all the way to the finish line with everything flying," Gordo commented.

The fleet had to deal with a 30-knot Santa Ana wind while sailing to L.A. that morning. By the time the fleet reached Alamitos Bay, the wind was in transition from north to west and had died down to zero.

During the race, Odyssey was able to bring the westerly breeze with them the whole way down the course, while the larger/newer boats had to fight through the same wind transition they had faced earlier in the day — this time at the finish line off Balboa Pier.

On Sunday, NHYC had its Opening Day ceremonies and yacht inspections. Everyone I talked to informed me that the day could not have gone any better, with most of the club's members and guests enjoying the warm weather and the start of the yachting season.

This year's NHYC Opening Day Yacht Inspection winners are:

Overall winner (Shirley Meserve Trophy): Checkmate, 1978 Peterson 50-feet, owner John Garrison.

Commodores Trophy: Conquest, 1929 Stephens 50-feet, Jim and Catherine Wolcott.

Traditional Sail: Encore, 1964 Columbia 5.5-meter, Vince Valdes.

Power over 40 feet: Shadow, 2005 Viking 52-feet, Joe Winkleman

Power under 40 feet: Runner, 2002 Hinckley 29-feet, Keith and Jenny Yonkers.

Sail under 40 feet: Violetta, 1977 Davidson 34-feet, Anthony Delfino.

Checkmate is a gorgeous 50-foot Doug Peterson-designed sailboat that Garrison restored and has kept in Bristol condition ever since.

Garrison does all the work himself getting the boat ready for opening day," Gordo told me. "Another yacht that showed very well was Shadow … and Mr. Winkleman does all his maintenance also."

Perfect, I thought to myself, that's how it is supposed to be done.

In trying to obtain the previous results, I stopped by NHYC and ran into one of my favorite sailors in the harbor, Jane Farwell.

She was taking in the warm conditions and painting on a small canvass when I said "hello."

We talked about opening days of the past and present, and I could not help but think how lucky we are to have access to our harbor. I hope I look as happy and content as Jane looks when I retire someday.

UCI Sailing Club in need of funds

Have you ever rediscovered an item that you did not want to lose and had put in a secure place? Upon finding this item, you sit down and part of your life flashes by, then a large smile then appears on your face.

That's what happened to me this week when I was asked to write a story regarding the UC Irvine Sailing Team. I never sailed for UCI, although I did sail and coach the Orange Coast College sailing team. The proximity of the two teams using the OCC Sailing Base as their homeport brought back fond memories.

It was like finding my grandmother's wedding ring in the family safe. And to me, that's what the UCI Sailing Team is to Newport Harbor, one of our harbors most treasured jewels.


Over the last 45 years the UCI Sailing Team has produced over 41 All American titles, seven National Championships and has provided an Intercollegiate Sailing Team for the local Newport sailors, names like Jon Pinckney, Nick Scandone, James Malm, Nick Adamson, Geoff Becker, Peter Wells and Julie Norman. If you would like to find out about the history of the UC Irvine Club Sailing Team, go to and it's all there.

One thing you should notice is the word "club" now appears before "sailing team." Less than three years ago, the university had to make cutbacks and the sailing team went from a full-fledged varsity program with a full-time coach and athletic department perks to a viable student-run racing program. Hence the use of the term "club."

A lot has changed since the 1980s at the sailing base, when I was sailing there. No longer do the students show up to practice like Jeff Spicoli in "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" with a cloud of smoke coming out of a VW Bus behind him. These young adults are on their own and are very fortunate to have sophomore Will Larson currently taking on the task of organizing this 13-member team.

I cannot begin to explain how focused this club is and what they have achieved this year. Placing fifth at the Pacific Coast Championships (PCC) and a fourth at the Women's PCC, the team has also qualified for the Team Race Nationals that will be sailed at the Gorge in Oregon, May 27-29.

The only other team to qualify from the Pacific Coast was the team from Stanford. Not bad for a sailing club that must discipline themselves and still compete at a varsity level.

It's also good to see local sailor Colin Kincaid from Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club sailing the Varsity A fleet for UCI. I should point out that Colin and his dad, Pat, have sailed a Lido 14s in our harbor for years.

The team's roster is on its website and I felt a strong presence of team pride while talking to these students. One thing has not changed from the 1980s is still the lack of funding.

To help solidify the sailing team's future and ensure that it remains a highly competitive team, the UCI sailing club needs your help . The UCI sailors are in desperate need of new equipment and travel funds. While the ultimate goal is an endowment to support the program, the immediate need is at least $45,000, which is needed to replace the fleet of boats, repair the trailers and acquire new sails.

Other options for donating are donations through a partnership with the California International Sailing Assn. (CISA). To make a tax-deductible donation, please make checks out to CISA and send to UCI Sailing, c/o Danielle Richards, 1150 Anchorage Lane, Unit 109, San Diego, CA 92106.

The students did not ask me to make this plug for them. I just recall the same obstacles and would hate to lose this jewel in our harbor.

It also felt good to interact with these young adults, and I truly meant it when I volunteered to run some races during practice for the team. To be honest, watching the team practice will make me a better sailor and person.

Remember to follow me on twitter at @boseyachts. Sea ya!

LEN BOSE is an experienced boater, yacht broker and boating columnist.

Yacht club championships a great start to summer

On June 17 and 18, I am chairing the Balboa Yacht Club's Club Championships, which will be sailed in Governor's Cup 21s.

The original concept of this event was to have a club champion, but the event has grown into so much more.

This event brings in every age group to compete or to be a spectator.

The first event is the "Masters Championships."

All skippers must be members in good standing of Balboa Yacht Club. All crew, including the skipper, must be at least 55. This means that you do not need to be a member, you just have to be 55.

With this change, I am hoping that cross-town teammates will join each other.

I can almost hear it now: "Dude! We are putting the band back together."

For example, how cool would it be if Andy Rose, Tom Purcell and Argyle Campbell teamed up together again?

There has to be another 25 teams like this in our harbor. Like the Johnson Bros., Gordo, Dougall and Halfdeck. Good times, baby! The races will start off M mark and finish at BYC Race tower, where BYC Fleet Capt. Paul Blank will emcee the races.

I can already hear the conversation between Rose and Halfdeck on who has room at K mark going for the finish. Now if you can only see yourself on the main dock enjoying beverages, air horn in hand, screaming for your favorite team to cross the finish line while the cannon goes off for the winner.

The racing is simple with no spinnakers and there will be up to five races from 2 to 5 p.m. June 17.

At 6 p.m., we will start the "Family Championships" with the same format and fun. All skippers must be members in good standing at the Balboa Yacht Club. Crew members must be immediate family members.

This time, I will be looking for teams like the Andrews family with Alan, Molly and Betty going against teams like the Ullmans with Dave, Jacob and Charlie.

Jennifer, Andrew and I will be racing, and we hope to see your family sign up. This event is all about the fun and how many people we can get to the club to watch someone kindly requesting spouses or kids to pull in the jib sheet a little faster.

June 18 is the Club Championships or "The Race for the Parking Spot." This is the only event, all year, when you leave the house and your spouse wishes you "good luck," and they truly mean it! This event is for BYC members only and will be five races sailed outside in the ocean.

You can always tell when its Club Championship time at BYC. Members will start asking our junior instructors which kids can do the bow. Others will come up to me and ask who my crew is.

I keep my cards as close to my chest as possible on this one; I want that parking spot again some day. One of my best sailing memories is when I won this event, and Greg Newman came up to me and asked to use my cell phone. Once I handed it to him, I was on my way into the bay.

Let the tradition continue and come on down and join in on the fun. NOR's are posted on the BYC website.

Sea ya.

LEN BOSE is an experienced boater, yacht broker and boating columnist.