The new Pixel design, which has been chosen by the Junior Sailing Association (JSA of LIS) as the new doublehanded training and racing boat for the 11-14-year-olds.
Bruce Kirby, that genius of a designer who brought us the Laser, Sonar and Ideal 18, has done it again - this time for the 11-14-year -ld set. The Pixel, a 13' 9" rocket of a boat, was chosen by the Junior Sailing Association of Long Island Sound (JSA of LIS) as its new doublehanded training and racing sailboat. The decision was made after a three-year process that included extensive research, boat testing and feedback from JSA membersDescribed as a fun and fast new boat, the Pixel is designed for juniors graduating from the Optimist and not yet ready for a Laser. "We think it's very important to have a boat that bridges this gap, "said Amy Kellogg, JSA chairman. "Not every junior sailor fits into an Optimist or Laser, and not everyone wants to sail by themselves." Pixels will be used for both recreational sailing and racing, with a full schedule of seminars and regattas planned by the JSA for the summer of 2006. The Pixel will eventually replace the venerable Blue Jay, which has served as a training and racing boat for generations of Long Island Sound junior sailors since the 1950s. "For many reasons we felt it was time for a change," said Fran MeVay, former JSA chairman. "We were looking for a boat that is safer, easier to sail and more fun. The Pixel fit our requirements almost perfectly." This new little boat is designed to teach youngsters how to sail together, how to work together, and how to interact in making the boat sail at its best. In this way the boat becomes a training system for recreational sailing, sailboat racing, and for personal communication.
The Pixel is fun, fast and very cool. Several veteran sailors plus some junior sailors road tested the Pixel and had only good things to say about her. John Burnham, Editor, Sailing World magazine, had this to say, "Considering that the wind was light, maybe four to eight knots, and that we were 100 pounds over the target weight, we had a fun sail. The helm balanced easily, and the boat accelerated well in the puffs, moving nicely through the chop." Bill Crane, Lightning, Sonar and 420 racer, after an outing in 20 - 25 knots of wind, said, "We planed downwind and we planed upwind. We never stopped planning." The best part about this new design - she sails well in light wind conditions. A youngster from Milford YC who tried out the Pixel said, "I just love this boat. I can't imagine how it can move so well in no wind." Considering how many days of little wind we had on Manhasset Bay last summer, the Pixel might be the next best thing in sailing for the juniors learning to sail here. For more information about the JSA of LIS or the Pixel, go to the JSA website www.jsalis.org or contact Bob Whittredge, JSA Executive Director at firstname.lastname@example.org or 914-834-4202. Or readers can do directly to Nearwater Boats, Home of PIXEL, Rowayton, CT 203-855-8923, email@example.com.
At the Storm Trysail Awards dinner this past weekend, several local sailors and well-known skippers from nearby harbors received awards for their endeavors at Block Island Race Week. The Storm Trysail club trophies are for the most part named and donated in memory of people who have contributed significantly to our sport as sailors and worked tirelessly for the Storm Trysail Club. Listed are winners of the Perpetual Trophies that are known to our readers. The Shelter Island Team Trophy, 3rd place was awarded to the Storm Trysail Commodores - Lora Ann (Rich du Moulin), Solution (John Thomson, Jr.) and Gold Digger (Jim Bishop). George Lauder Trophy for best performance by a Vintage yacht (15 years old or older), the Commodore's Grail Trophy for best corrected time - IRC below 1.08, the William Tripp Jr. Memorial Trophy for best corrected time IRC Fleet, the Arthur Wullschleger "Tuna" Trophy for the best IRC combined scores in the Edlu 40 percent and the BI Race 60 percent, the Harvey Conover Memorial Overall Trophy for the yacht that has won her class and in the judgment of the Flag Officers and Race Committee has had the best performance - Lora Ann, Richard du Moulin. du Moulin also came in first in Class 4 at Block Island. Bob Towse, on Blue Yankee, was 3rd in Class 1; Jim Sykes on Bombardino came in second in Class 2. Winners in the White fleet included Craig Albrecht, Avalanche, 3rd, Jim Bishop, Gold Digger, 2nd Class 2, Jeff Willis, Challenge IV, 1st Class 2; Damian Emery, Eclipse, 3rd, Class 6. Top boats in the Blue Fleet: Iris Vogel, Deviation, 3rd Class 2 PHRF, Robert Lehnert, Lunatic Fringe, 3rd Class 4. Red Fleet winners: Edgar Cato, Hissar, 3rd Class 1 IRC Super 0, Dennis Collins and Steve Benjamin, High Noon, 2nd class 2 ORC 0, Andrew Weiss, Christopher Dragon, 3rd Class 4 IRC One, Jim and Tom Rich, Settler, 2nd Class 4 IRC One, Mort Weintraub, Troubador, 2nd Class 5 IRC two, and Rich du Moulin, Lora Ann, 1st, Class 5 IRC two.
The frostbite season is upon us - even though the weather seems much too warm for winter sailing. So far, though, no one has been complaining. There will be enough days ahead where skippers and crew will arrive back on shore with faces red from the raw winter winds and toes almost, but not quite, frozen. For now, sailors are happy to be back in the little dinghies. This year, some Ideal 18s have joined the group. On Sunday, Nov. 6 there were 10 Ideal 18s and 9 IC dinghies on the starting line. Results are only for the IC dinghies as the Ideal 18s reported only sail numbers and no names. Once ideal 18 scoring includes the names of skipper and crew, they will be included. For the IC dinghies, only the skippers' names were made availableSix races were held and top boats were: 1. #536, Pedro Lorson, 2. #514, Ted Toombs, and 3. #121, "Fee" Mitropoulos. Results for Sunday, Nov. 13 were unavailable at press time.
An American woman sailor, Sally Barkow, of Nashotah WI, has received the honor of being the first to have her name on the Bermuda Trophy, for her excellent match racing skills. This is a new trophy to be awarded annually to the winner of the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Women's Match Racing World Championship. The elegant silver bowl has been presented by the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club and will be deeded to ISAF. The new perpetual trophy, which replaces the crystal ISAF Women's Nations Cup trophy which has previously been awarded to the world champion, now represents the highest level of achievement in women's match race sailing. For more information see, www.ussailing.com
Normally this column does not report on the Seahorse Magazine Sailor of the Month Award, but last month's one was special and worth repeating for our readers. Ian Ainslie (RSA), a Finn sailor, won the Sailor of the Month in recognition of his work getting South African children off the street and into sailing and school. "There is no greater achievement than giving back," he said. Ainslie has changed many South African children's lives, and because of example, many more may be saved around the world. Isn't it nice that they are helping children through sailing?
Bill Sandberg, host of the Moosehead Awards at Indian Harbor YC, emailed your columnist to point out a slight error in reporting. Last week's column incorrectly awarded the Moosehead Second Class to Pequot YC. It was Cedar Point YC which won this prestigious honor. Our thanks to Mr. Sandberg for setting the record straight.