Celebrating 40 years since the J/24 was introduced, the second New England J/Fest Regatta is being hosted by Sail Newport the weekend of August 11-13th 2017. North Sails is the Partner Sponsor for this regatta limited to J/Boat owners and crew with racing taking place in Narragansett Bay and Rhode Island Sound. This event capitalizes on our New England 2016 J/Fest and similar successful J/Fest Regattas held in other US regions where participation has exceeded over 70 boats. The event coordinators are anticipating 80 boats on the starting line with One Design starts for classes with 5 or more boats. To commemorate the 40th Anniversary of the J/24 Class, J/Fest New England and Sail Newport invite all J/24 sailors, past and present, to enter the Around the Island Race with the first gun at 1300 on Friday August 11th. To make a whole weekend of it, there’s W/L buoy racing Saturday and Sunday as part of J/Fest New England. Read the J/24 40th Anniversary Notice of Race at this link. There will be off the water festivities including a barbeque on Saturday night with awards following racing on Sunday.
40 years ago, the J/24 made its boat show debut at the Hartford Boat Show. It was a memorable occasion for many reasons, including the fact that the main roof of the Civic Center had failed in several areas due to heavy snow accumulation. The show had to be staged in the wings of the building, and the low ceilings prevented the mast from being stepped. The sleek, bright red J/24 attracted a ton of attention over the weekend, with the most popular question being – “how much horsepower does this boat have?” Little did anyone know at the time just how much horsepower the J/24 would prove to have. J/Boats looks forward to a great year ahead and are already out of the blocks with a busy January including: a record J/Boats attendance at Quantum Key West Race Week (64% of the fleet), Sailing World Boat-of-the-Year for the J/112E, the largest J display yet at BOOT Dusseldorf, and the new J/121 project quickly taking shape in Rhode Island.
This event takes place in “home waters” for many of the iconic high performance J boats that were built at the former Tillotson-Pearson Incorporated, the former Pearson Composites LLC, US Watercraft and CCF Composites. J/Boats have a very strong following and very active class associations that include world class champion sailors. The 2017 New England J/Fest regatta is scheduled the weekend between Buzzard Bay Regatta (4-6 August) and the Ida Lewis Distance Race (18-19 August). This allows boats that travel to compete in three back-to-back events at different venues around Southern New England. This regatta has also been designated as a special event for certain J/Boat classes as follows:
- J/30 Class - Southern New England Regional Championship
- J/70 Class - Narragansett Bay Championship
- J/105 Class - Fleet 14 Event
- J/109 Class - Part of the East Coast Regatta Series Championship