|Showing 11 items.|
|2019 Sonar Midwinters at the Helly Hansen NOOD St. Pete|
Posted: Tuesday, December 4th, 2018 4:15 pm
Hello Sonar Racers! We are busy planning the 2019 Helly Hansen NOOD - February 15 - 17, 2019, hosted by the St. Petersburg YC. We hope to see you back next year in beautiful St Petersburg, FL. Click here for all the details and to register. Sign up today!
Please let me know if you have any questions. Thanks,
|2019 Tappan Zee Challenge|
Posted: Sunday, November 25th, 2018 11:09 am
Nyack Sonar Fleet plans to host the Tappan Zee Challenge June 15 and 16 in 2019. This will be part of the Nyack One Design Regatta to be held in conjunction with the Lightning and Viper Fleets at the Nyack Boat Club (59 Gedney Street, Nyack, NY).
The joint regatta makes for a lively event both on the water and off. That combined with sailing in the shadow of the new bridge over the Hudson and a thus far unbroken tradition of visitors winning the TZC should make it appealing for Sonars from Long Island and Connecticut as well as farther away come to Nyack for a good tune up for that other big regatta in Rochester.
For information, contact Jim Boughton email@example.com.
|Sonar Gin Poles|
Posted: Saturday, November 3rd, 2018 10:37 am
A Sonar owner asked the Class for its thinking on gin poles for stepping and unstepping masts. Technical Committee Chairman Lee Morrison provided this insight:
Most Sonar gin poles I've seen are created from old discarded/broken Sonar masts. At Noroton YC, we have a fixed gin pole made from an old cruising boat mast that's permanently installed into the ground and allows stepping/unstepping from a Sonar on its trailer. But, in this note, I describe a gin pole that sits on the cabin top and is portable (it can be tied to a Sonar trailer and travel with the boat).
The old mast/gin pole is stayed to the forestay and shroud connection plates and sits on top of the pole downhaul clip - to make sure the base of the gin pole doesn't slip off the cabin top. I've seen some implementations of a nice wood block being used which allows for a snugger connection to the pole downhaul and protects the cabin top from being scratched by the pole.
Then with the mast crane of the old mast ~5' above the spreaders of the mast that being unstepped, a line going through a block on the crane is tied below the spreaders and will be used to lift the base of the mast high enough to clear the partners. Once the mast is up, pivot the butt forward and lower. Obviously, the opposite to step a mast.
It's a pretty basic set up that I've seen used a number of times.
|2018 Women’s Midwest Championships –|
Posted: Wednesday, October 3rd, 2018 9:33 pm
Reported by winner Nicolie Hendrickson
The first Annual Women’s Midwest Championships hosted by Wayzata Yacht Club was held on Lake Minnetonka, MN September 14th – 16th. The best women sailors from the area attended the event. It was competitive sailing with amazing conditions. If you want to compete with the best women sailors in the Midwest, sign up for the 2019 Women’s Championships. I will be there to defend my first-place finish!
The Team. I have always been a champion of all-women teams and, when given the chance, will tend towards building all-women teams. The biggest difference between women and men race teams are, women will apply sunscreen on to each other’s backs (including where your shirt rides up) and they focus on team gear. Most of the pre-event discussion was determining our team gear. Otherwise, the competitiveness, the skill level, the intensity, and the team work are the same as men’s teams…..actually, the women’s teamwork and communication is better.
L to R: Tina Heidelberger, Nicolie Hendrickson, Wendy Helberg, and MB Freienmuth
The Rasta Racing team was myself, MB Freienmuth, Tina Heidelberger, and Wendy Helberg. MB and I campaigned an all-women team on our J22 in the early 2000’s. We attended many national events and a couple of the ROLEX International Women’s Keelboat Championships. I then moved to E Scows and MB started racing big boats off-shore. It was wonderful to be back together again. We picked up right where we left off, I keep asking her to bring the pole back, she keeps telling me its back as far as it will go. Wendy Helberg and Tina Heidelberger are accomplished J24 sailors. They have been racing for many years in the J24 fleet and most recently have been racing with me on my J70.
The Event. Needless to say, we were all very new to Sonars. The event coordinators made the whole process very easy. In fact, all I had to do was sign up and send an email stating I was looking for a boat. We chartered Tom Brown’s boat Tally Ho #548. He was amazing. He sent me a Sonar “Go Fast” manual and checked in with the team daily to answer our questions and discuss rig tension for the changing conditions. On Friday, the event offered a clinic where they went through boat handling, practice starts, and mark roundings for all us Sonar newbies. The Saturday night after-race party was really fun, all the spectators and competitors attended. The famous E-boat bar was serving Bootlegs with sponsored Her Vodka and there was live music. Some folks were actually dancing, not on the E-boat.
1st windward mark rounding in 5th race
The Competition. The teams were comprised of the best female sailors from around the lake. They came from Lasers, Scows, J-boats, Yinglings, and of course, Sonars. The speeds of the different boats were very close, with us typically all together at the mark roundings. The wind conditions started off at around 4knts for the first race and built to a consistent 14knts by the last race. Therefore, we were adjusting our boat positions for the increasing winds. We ended up moving Wendy to main sheet trim on the last 3 races. She was a powerhouse. I give her full credit for our upwind speed and point. We had Tina calling the breeze and she would pump the main on every shot.
I must admit, I have a terrible memory when it comes to recapping races, it is all a blur. Therefore, I am going to share the significant highlights I remember. First, there was a weather advisory that weekend, temperatures over 90F, most of our boat weight consisted of a water cooler sized for a football team. We drank it all. After the second race, a majority of the women, jumped in the lake to cool down. The big challenge was getting back on the boats. For our boat, it was very much like a seal flopping onto land. Second, the last leg of the second race, Sarah Olmsted, #810, was ahead of us, she had a tight cover. We kept tacking to clear and finally were able to break free and get some separation. As we entered the finish, we were hoping our starboard tack could seal the deal. Unfortunately, the wind shifted left and they beat us. It will still fun trying to outplay each other with boat handling and positioning. It came down to the LAST RACE, as I said, the competition was close. The final podium places were determined based on the last race finishes. We thought we needed 2 points between us and Sarah Olmsted and Adie Ferguson to win. On the final leg, we were in the lead, and both Adie and Sarah split tacks, Adie went up hard left and Sarah went up hard right. We felt the left was favored and tried to stay in check with both teams by going up middle left, knowing there was a bigger lift further up on the left side. We ended up finishing 1st and magically, Christine Kronich (4th place finisher) and Allison Thompson, finished 2nd and 3rd place, followed by Adie and Sarah. We did it! We got the 2 points!
Tallying the final scores on the way in after the last race. (810 – Sarah Olmsted, 233 – Adie Ferguson, and 548 – Nicolie Hendrickson). We WON!!!!
It did take us the whole sail back to the club, to do the math, to confirm we won. Figuring out the throw-outs and trying to remember the boats past race finishes, we quickly realized, it was too hard to do in our heads. We ended up writing it out on the port compass plaque. We then texted the photo out to the world!
It was an amazing weekend with fun women and great competition. I look forward to competing at the 2019 event. Come join us.
2018 WOMEN'S MIDWEST CHAMPIONSHIP RESULTS
2018 Women’s Midwest Championship Website
2018 Women’s Midwest Championship Results Webpage
|A conversation with 2018 Sonar North American Champion Skipper Karl Ziegler|
Posted: Thursday, September 27th, 2018 11:28 am
The following is a conversation where 2018 NAs Champ Karl Ziegler ressponds to questions posed by Sonar Class Administrator Buttons Padin.
I grew up sailing at Noroton Yacht Club, where Bruce Kirby was a member. The primary fleet in the 80’s was the J/24. Bruce looked at the membership of the club, which was aging, and the physical challenges of sailing a J/24, and decided to design a boat that would be as fast, nimbler and much easier to sail across a wide age range. Hence, the Sonar was born. Every member (almost) traded their J/24’s for a Sonar, the Ziegler family included. My siblings all tried their hand, usually sailing with my father, and we had 20 Sonars on the line for years in the 80’s; but I was in high school/college and fancied myself a pure dingy sailor. As a college sailor in the early 90s, the prospect of sailing in the sloop champs led me to the Sonar. At this point, my father had seen something in the boat and class that intrigued him, and we began sailing together in as many events as we could squeeze in between my father’s GEM program and my V15/dinghy sailing.
In 1992, we were fortunate enough to capture our first Sonar NA’s (sailing with TK, Peter Alarie, my dad, and me). It transpired in dramatic fashion as I was over early in the last race, and we had to weave our way back through a very large fleet (I want to say 50+ boats in that era). The team was masterful and I remember shooting the finish line to capture the championship by 1 point, and my father pounded his fist on the deck and stated “that beats the s..t out of big boat racing!” From that moment, I was hooked on the class and continued to sail with my father in every event we could find time to do. It was a point in my life where I really saw the beauty and joy in my father and his life and we became bonded until his end. That’s why I’ve stayed with the Sonar Class for this long.
Started sailing with Greg Stevens in the late 90’s, BA Cup, Morgan Trophy. He always leads our overall strategy and calls tactics upwind - the best I’ve sailed with.
Bill Crane, starting in 2010, phenomenal teammate, jib trimmer and setup strategist. I’d never sailed a race with Libby Alexander before, but I’ve known her for years, one of my sister Heidi’s best friends. Her focus, hard work and aura were instrumental. All are good friends, I only sail with friends at this point in my life
Almost zero prep for the regatta. Not at all what we were hoping for but life can be busy. We spent our one day together buffing/scrubbing years of grime off the boat and reapplying an anti-fouling sheen. Perhaps not the best use of time, but it generated confidence and was a clear team bonding moment.
We had some good general game plans for each race, but many of them were altered on the fly due to conditions and fleet placement.
No question that the amount of time we spend team racing together offset our lack of specific practice for this event. The communication, trimming, vibe and smoothness all come from team racing together.
This whole team has boldly penciled in the 2019 Worlds in Rochester on our calendars, so hopefully that will all work out. There’s a whole ski season between now and then however. :-)
|Sonar Midwest Championship Report - Overall Recap|
Posted: Tuesday, September 18th, 2018 9:16 pm
September 7-9, 2018
Reported By Chandra Wobschall, Batmobile
Greetings from fly over country, the land of inland lake racing where the Sonar Midwest Championship Regatta took place this past weekend. The Wayzata Yacht Club (WYC) once again provided a beautiful venue filled with great food, awesome comradery (when we weren’t at war on the race course), entertainment, and booze, after all what regatta doesn’t have that?!?
Lake Minnetonka threw a lot of tough conditions at the 16 US and 2 Canadian Sonars over the weekend. Friday races started with a beautiful sunny sky and light winds but built to a breeze of 7-10 knots by the afternoon. The RC managed to get 3 races off in somewhat shifty conditions that day with a different winner in each race; John Sligh, Hans Dickel and Mike Hanson. The sailors enjoyed a nice evening of pizza, beverages served from the infamous wooden E-Scow bar and dancing to live music.
Saturday morning races were in sunny conditions with winds of 8-18 knots in oscillating conditions keeping the RC busy making minor course adjustments. Afternoon races saw wind speeds of 10-13 knots, a number of large shifts on top of the oscillating winds kept competitors and RC on their toes. Winners of Saturday races included Mike Hanson with two bullets; Thomas Brown, Hans Dickel and John Sligh all with one win. Saturday evening festivities included lots of talking about the five races of the day, beverages from the E-Scow bar, the delicious catered dinner by local chef Connie Blanchard and once again dancing to and enjoying live music. To top it all off, the James J. Hill Days festivities provided us some wonderful fireworks that evening.
We completed two additional races on Sunday morning in once again unusually shifty winds of 8-11 knots. The RC once again did a great job resetting courses for the challenging conditions. The regatta wrapped up with a nice awards ceremony and keeper trophies for the top 5 boats:
1. 233 Buckin’ Burro – Mike Hanson
2. 548 Tally Ho! – Thomas Brown
3. 464 Gusto – John Sligh
4. 810 Batmobile – Hans Dickel/Sarah Olmsted
5. 371 Zataway – J.R. Rainaldi
All in all, weekend was a success completing 10 of the possible 12 races having both sunshine and, more importantly wind, for the Sonar Midwest Championship. At WYC Sonars are fortunate to have 70+ regular scheduled races, a handful of pre-season race clinics and over a half dozen Friday Night Sonar Team Racing Sailing & Socials. Highlighting our year with an additional 10 races is icing on the cake. We are already looking forward to the 2019 Midwest Championship Regatta!
|Sonar Midwest Championship Regatta Report|
Posted: Tuesday, September 18th, 2018 9:06 pm
September 7-9, 2018
Mike Hanson – USA 233 “The Bucking Burro”
Reported by winner Mike Hanson
Eighteen Sonars gathered on Lake Minnetonka for the 2018 Sonar Midwest Championships hosted by Wayzata Yacht Club. The event was part of the annual Star of the North Regatta.
Day one saw a tricky mix of breeze ranging from north-east to south-east. PRO Blake Middleton did a fantastic job keeping the race courses fair in such challenging conditions. He completed two races in a north-easterly breeze ranging from 7-10 knots. Race number three was a beautiful southeasterly. We were happy to take the win on the final race of the day, sending us into the dock with high spirits. Our hats were off to Sonar 810, “Batmobile Rises,” skippered by Hans Dickel, who sailed a brilliant first day and were hot on our heels after three races.
On shore, sailors were greeted with appetizers and pizza by the regatta volunteers at Wayzata Yacht Club. Competitors gathered around the famous E Scow bar for complimentary Mount Gay cocktails while listening to the live entertainment. WYC is, at its core, one of the best social yacht clubs in the country. This isn’t to say that racing takes a backseat to the social aspect. With its hyper-competitive J/22, J/24, Sonar, Capri 25, and Laser fleets, the one-design racing culture of the club is second to none. However, anyone that has raced at WYC will tell you that their favorite part of sailing there is gathering around the complimentary kegs for a few beers and getting to know the competitors after racing. With the beautiful waters of Wayzata Bay serving as a natural backdrop, evenings are always filled with fun social activity.
Day two of the event saw some of the best sailing of the season on Lake Minnetonka. Competitors battled it out in an oscillating easterly breeze ranging from 8 to 18 knots. PRO Blake Middleton executed another strong day of race management, completing five races on the day. Sonar 548, “Tally Ho!” skippered by Thomas Brown and Harrison Burton, had a great day on the water with some of the other competition struggling to finish consistently. The keys to success were staying in phase with the wind shifts, finding pressure across the race course, and beating the boats around you when it counted. After five intense races, competitors were happy to find themselves back at Wayzata Yacht Club, where they were greeted by more live music and more great food, not to mention a few more visits to the E Scow bar for a bit of Mount Gay to soothe their bumps and bruises.
The third and final day of the event saw a southeasterly breeze ranging from 8 to 11 knots. PRO Blake Middleton wrapped up a fantastic event with two more well administered races. The end of the event saw an explosive performance from Sonar 464, “Gusto,” sailed by John & Liz Sligh, who finished the event with four straight race-wins. However, our four straight second-place finishes proved more consistent as a whole, and we were happy to sail away with the regatta win. With eighteen boats in contention, including two from Canada, every race was a battle.
All in all, the 2018 Sonar Midwest Championships was a huge success. I would personally like to thank all the organizers, volunteers, competitors, Wayzata Yacht Club, my crew of Judson Kohen, Dave and Lucy Ferguson, and my dad Bill Hanson for their outstanding efforts. I’d also like to thank PRO Blake Middleton & team for pulling out all the stops to ensure three spectacular days of racing on Lake Minnetonka.
|Rick Doerr and crew win Manhasset Bay Race Week|
Posted: Wednesday, August 29th, 2018 2:52 pm
August 24-26, 2018
Repored by Rick Doerr, Valiant
The Sonar Long Island Sound Championship was contested as part of the Manhasset Bay Race week this weekend. The prestigious Manhasset Bay Yacht Club and Fleet #11 were great hosts and thanks to PRO Bill Seiner who hosted a fantastic regatta. They had a great Clam Bake/ party on Saturday night with gracious hospitality. With a strong local showing led by stalwart John Browning sailing Ping, traveling sailors including Tappan Zee Champ Bahar Gidwadi, and yours truly, Rick Doerr (the 2006 LIS Champ) sailing with Adam Kreszowski, Rebecca Macies, Barbara Marcoz, and Sam Parsons, and a really strong contribution from the US Merchant Marine cadets we had 12 boats on the line. The PRO got 13 races off in mostly light and shifty breezes.
It turns out the competition came down to the advantage of the local knowledge vs. the athleticism of the college sailors vs. the outstanding boat speed of TZC Champ. There were many lead changes throughout each race, and short races kept everyone together at the end with exciting photo finishes.
After rigging and registration were completed on the first day, the RC got off four races in a nice afternoon sea breeze of seven knots. There were multiple race winners on the day including USMMA sailor Ryan Hunter and MYBC’s John Browning; but Bahar was the leader with 2 wins on the day, one by nearly a full leg.
Saturday started out very light with a nearly4 hour postponement waiting for the sea breeze. What a lovely venue to spend a hot summer morning waiting for breeze. We had plenty of opportunity to discuss boat setups, strategy, local fleet issues and have a relaxing lunch on the deck. When the breeze finally filled in again at gentle 5-7 knots, the RC again did a great job getting five fun races for the day (well maybe not so fun for those of us on the wrong side of a shift or on the long end of a fleet inversion, which happened to nearly everyone at one point during the day). Once again there were multiple race winners including the top four teams, and local sailor John Browning moved into a third-place tie after multiple race wins.
With good breeze predicted for the last day of racing, it would surely turn into quite a shootout. And, with an ~10 knts breeze, again the athletic USMMA team would be the winners on the day with two bullets out of the four races. Once again, Ping would have a solid day securing their 3rd place position, and Valiant would win a race on the day to secure a tie for the lead. As the two lead boats sailed back to the dock together discussing the regatta, we congratulated them on winning the regatta based on the first tie breaker of more regatta wins, but we had inconveniently forgot to consider throw outs for the regatta which included 2 races, and that got us a single point advantage over the midshipmen.
Once again, the host club outdid themselves with a very prestigious award ceremony, including the Lure Perennial Trophy which is awarded to the best overall performance went to the Sonar Division winner (Class Prez Rick Doerr), and a beautiful Long Island Sound Championship Cup.
After awards ceremony, we celebrated the success of the event and promoted the upcoming Sonar North American Championship which could see multiple USMMA teams and the local fleet stalwart to compete with nearly 40+ boats, promising to be a fantastic season-ending championship.
|Manhasset Bay Race Week 2018|
Posted: Friday, July 20th, 2018 7:07 am
Notice of Race for the iconic Manhasset Bay Race Week, including the Sonar Long Island Sound Championship is available HERE.
SAVE THE DATES
Manhasset Bay Yacht Club
Port Washington, NY
|The Tappan Zee Challenge|
Posted: Saturday, June 9th, 2018 7:07 am
The 2018 Tappan Zee Challenge Regatta Report
June 9-10, 2018
Nyack Boat Club, Nyack, NY
Reported by Bahar Gidwani
The following article is by Bahar Gidwani who with his team of Eva Burpee, Chris Vargas (day one) & Allan Freedman (day two) sailed faster and smarter than the rest of us and swept the regatta with five bullets…………………...
The Tappan Zee Regatta has been hosted by the Nyack Boat Club for many years. The event used to be in mid-May and was our class excuse for getting set up early. While it has now crept into early June, this regatta still offers a great opportunity to check your gear and tuning and get your crew excited about the summer Sonar season.
The regatta venue is a wide stretch of the Hudson river, just above the new Mario Cuomo Bridge. The high bluffs on the west side, the strong current, and the temperature differences between the water and the two shores generate a range of sailing challenges. In past years I’ve seen no wind, 30 knots, and sudden 90 degree veers and backs—sometimes all on the same day!
Nine boats showed up including seven locals, our Noroton entry, and one boat from Falmouth. We sailed with a fleet of Vipers and a fleet of Lightnings, so the RC had a lot going on. The first race series started on the dot at 11:00 on Saturday in a 3 knot breeze from the north. Since the tide was ebbing to the south at one or two knots, all three fleets had to struggle just to stay near the starting line. We tried a dip start, got shut out by a host of Sonars who managed to stay on the line despite the tide, and had to do two quick tacks just to get out of jail!
My crew voted for the left side—mostly to get less current. (The river channel on the right was streaming south like a fire hose!) That strategy worked and put us ahead of the right side boats. RC wisely chose to shorten the course and a thirty minute wait allowed the last few boats to struggle home.
We predicted the wind would die (or shift left). Instead, it steadied and strengthened a bit. RC sent us off and the Left side paid again (with more boats going that way the second time!). There were small shifts—especially near the top of the course where the bluffs on the Western shore came closer to the water. Each little shift shook up the order, but the boats that got most left and stayed there seemed to benefit. We started to see a shirt chop and had to keep remembering to ease a bit and drive through it. Downwinds were short due to the sweep of the current.
By the third race, the wind had built to eight knots. We saw several boats retuning their rigs. (We took a half inch off our forestay length and went down to an inch of block behind the mast instead of an inch and a half.) The tide was close to slack, so the start got more intense as boats luffed to build holes and waited paitiently before using them. The wind started to oscillate a bit and boats that went up the middle (and could stay in phase) seemed to benefit versus those who banged an edge.
In the fourth race, the wind surprised us again by building to ten knots. We had to start dropping the traveler a bit to keep the boat flat. The fleet packed in tight around the marks as boats were now able to come to the mark from any side of the course. Despite four races, there was a tight pack of boats in the middle of the fleet with similar scores.
On day two of the regatta, we sailed out to conditions that looked exactly like day one! Light breeze from 010, lots of current, and a cloudy sky. RC tried to set up a course for our fifth race, but the wind at the top mark dropped to two knots and then zero. Puffs help keep the fleets from flushing down into Manhattan harbor. But, it wasn’t enough even for Sonars (who are can race in two knots of wind in flat water) to start.
Then my crew pointed out a small pleasure boat on the eastern shore. It was zooming along in dark water. Sure enough, an easterly filled in at about six knots from the far shore. RC reset to 90 degrees and off we went. This time, we had current going left to right across the course and a wind that would go right 10 or 20 degrees for a few puffs and then return to normal. The fleet scattered in all directions, with each boat tacking furiously in its own local wind shifts. Each time someone looked to be in the lead, someone else would get a puff or shift.
The result was a first windward mark rounding that was pretty noisy. (Don’t forget—there was also a two knot current taking everyone away from the mark!) On the down wind, some boats tried going right (up current), while others went left. Our tactician predicted the wind might drop so we went left both because it was the longer leg and because would could then go high and back up current, near the end. It is hard to say which strategy worked as the front boats had to struggle to keep their air clear from the pack that was trailing them.
The second upwind reshuffled the lead and set up a second downwind that was one of those picture-perfect moments. Most of the fleet was lined up side-by-side, under spinnaker, heading for the finish. There was a slight favor to the boat end that helped Dave and Kitty Bessey take second place by a nose, followed in quick succession by nearly everyone else.
The wind shifted left 15 degrees. RC tried for another race but had to abandon it. With no wind in sight, RC abandoned racing for the day. Of course, as we headed in a southerly came up! We just missed another one of those famous Tappan Zee 90 degree shifts.
Nyack did a great dinner for everyone on Saturday night and had free beer and chips after racing both days. As a cost cutting measure, the host Fleet decided not to provide shirts to the competitors. This probably made sense but does mean that my collection of shirts (I was wearing one from 2000 on the second day) now has a hole in it.
Competitive racing, wonderful hosts, and a challenging venue. No protest hearings (although there were a number of circles done on the water). Free beer and good food. All Sonar sailors should put this one on their calendars for next year.
Rounding out the podium; finishing in second place was Team 462, Jim Boughton of Nyack; in third place was team 674, Rick Doer also of Nyack. As Bahar said and we hope that you do “…put this one on their (your) calendars for next year.”
Winner Bahar Gidwani and crew
Jim Boughton in second place.
Rick Doerr's team placed third.
Sailed: 5, Discards: 0, To count: 5, Entries: 9, Scoring system: Appendix A TZ
|New Class Officers - Changing of the Guard|
Posted: Monday, June 4th, 2018 1:25 pm
Bruce McArthur has retired as Sonar Class President and as Sonar Class Administrator. This has given the Sonar Class Executive Committee the impetus to think about restructuring. To that end, the Class is thrilled to announce that Rick Doerr, probably our most well known and accomplished Sonarian, has agreed to step up and assume the Class President position. In addition we have hired Ed “Buttons” Padin as Class Administrator. Buttons is an enthusiastic sailor, a member of Larchmont Yacht Club and, since leaving Madison Ave., an experienced class administrator. He is class administrator for the Viper 640 and for the Buccaneer 16 classes and now for the Sonar Class. He can be reached directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your class officers are: