Ok, we just wrapped up our 2016 SCYA Midwinter Clinic and Regatta…  and it was an absolute hoot!   Sailors from all around North America joined J/World aboard four of our J/80s in beautiful San Diego for three days of coached practice sessions and classroom time, followed by two days out on the racecourse with the Midwinter Regatta.

Each morning began with classroom sessions covering everything from upwind mainsail trim to heavy air gybing.  Lectures revolved around strategy, tactics, and rules.  Then we raced!  Not to shabby for February, eh?

Thanks tons to all the sailors who came out and joined us!  I think the only compliant we heard all week was that some of the participants living in ‘less accommodating’ climes would have to wait three more months before getting to sail their boats!   Sorry to hear that, but glad you were able to sneak in a winter training session.  Now go back home and show your local fleet how it’s done come springtime!

All the best,

Wayne, Patrick, Sean, Robert, Andrew, and the rest of the J/World Team….









J/105 Clinic Wrap Up

You know, I’m not the best salesman.  I don’t really believe in the hard sell process.  So whenever I have to write a wrap-up like the one I’m doing now, I hesitate at launching into what a great event we just had.  It just sounds too good to be true, like I am just blowing smoke and bragging beyond any possible reality.  But I swear it’s true….

We just finished a three day J/105 clinic in San Diego.   The weather?  Beautiful February.  Ok, I admit that wore a light jacket,  but never even thought of changing out of shorts.  Sunny, clear, nice breeze…  perfect breezes, actually, for our goals. The sailors?  We had participants from beautiful sailing venues all around the continent:  Seattle, Ontario, Chicago, New York, and of course California, to name a few. The coaches? We had a truly rockstar team with staff from our San Francisco, San Diego , and Puerto Vallarta locations coming together to provide a world-class experience.   Seriously, I can’t think of anything that could have been even a little bit better.




So a huge thank you to all of the 18 sailors who traveled to SD for the clinic….  it was an absolute pleasure to sail with all of you!  Thanks for all the positive feedback, an I am thrilled that you all had an enjoyable and beneficial time with us.  Thank you for all the kind words, and keep in touch!


For those of you who missed this one, we’ll be doing another J/105 clinic May 13-14-15, again in San Diego.  We expect this one will sell out too, so register early.





Happy Alumni Tales

We here at J/World love getting tales of adventure from our alumni!  Another of these just popped up in our inbox, and we thought we would share it.  This comes from our friend Gary who took classes with us a couple years ago then set off to do it on his own:

I’ve had a really busy couple years since I took classes at J/World.  I think the last time I wrote you, I had purchased my boat and was having it refurbished.  Well, I finished the major project last May in St. Petersburg.  A friend joined me and we sailed my boat from St. Pete to Cape Canaveral, around the Keys.  After he left, I single handed up to Brunswick, Georgia.

FullSizeRender (1)

I traveled off the boat for about 6 weeks, then came back and sailed from Brunswick to Washington, DC.  We did a combination of Inter-coastal Waterway and coastal sailing in the Atlantic.  We managed to get caught in a thunderstorm that fortunately only lasted about 75 minutes.  Winds were sustained at 45 and gusted to 57 knots!   We managed just fine.  After DC, I sailed back to Brunswick, and then a month later sailed from Brunswick to West Palm Beach.


Last week, with friends and crew, I sailed to the Bahamas.  Twelve miles from West End, my engine quit and I couldn’t get her restarted.  Without being able to motor into port, no tow service, no protected place to anchor and a big storm on the way, we turned around. So, we sailed back to West Palm Beach, wing on wing throughout the night and arrived at dawn.  I got towed into the marina.  The mechanic said it was crud (technical term) in the diesel, so, I had the fuel polished and we left again on Monday.  This time we made it to West End just fine!  So, now I’m a veteran of crossing the Gulf Stream three times (in less than a week).  Gary H., who took all of the courses with me at J/World, flew in and sailed with me.  We had a great time together.

FullSizeRender (2)

I’m stuck in West End for a few days waiting for good weather to sail across the Little Bahama Banks on to Great Sale Cay and then to Green Turtle Cay.  My plan is to get all the way to the southern Exumas, and perhaps beyond.

In the time I’ve owned my boat, just 13 months now, I logged almost 4000 nautical miles and I’m starting to feel competent as a sailor.  I live aboard full time and love it.

Thanks again for having a great school and teaching me the fundamentals so I could do what I’m doing.  I’m loving my life!

FullSizeRender (3)

Thanks for sharing, Gary!  Keep us posted on your next adventures!

 –  Fair winds and following seas from your friends at J/World!

San Diego to Puerto Vallarta Race Opportunity



We still have space in the 2016 running of the San Diego to Puerto Vallarta Race this February.  Come join J/World coaches for the sleigh-ride to the tropics aboard the legendary sled Hula Girl.  We have a great fleet of 50 footers signed up (7 boats so far!).  This is going to be one great event.  Visit here for more info, or contact us to receive the Team Brief!

Transpac Video

Strongest Storm Ever Measured ?!

It’s been said for a long time the Puerto Vallarta is a natural ‘hurricane hole,’ a harbor offering mariners protection from the severe storms that are generated in summer months over the warm Pacific waters.  The old town PV is nestled in the south-eastern corner of Banderas Bay, just at the base of tail end of the Sierra Madres mountain range.  That range extends some 20 miles seaward along the southern shore of the Bay, so when tropical storms generate down south and work their way northward, that range presents a natural barrier.


I have to say that when the strongest hurricane ever recorded was spinning our way a couple days ago, all my knowledge of the unique characteristics of PV were of little comfort.  Just look at the size of the thing in the photo above.  So the town braced, as a storm packing 200 mph winds zeroed in on the coastline.  CFE, the power company, was staging trucks and crews waiting for the chaos.  The federal and local police had convoys on standby.  Shopping centers and stores were all closed and boarded.  The resorts were evacuated, the airports closed.  And in the marinas, docklines were doubled, and then tripled.

But if anyone had any question as to the security of Puerto Vallarta as a top notch haven, well, let’s just get rid of those.  By 10 pm, well after the storm center had made landfall some 50 miles south of us, the most we had seen was maybe – maybe – 15 knots.  And I’m probably exaggerating.  Most of the evening was calm, really calm.  True, we had a steady diet of moderate rain, but that was about it.  Seriously.  The strongest hurricane ever recorded was 50 miles away, and we didn’t have enough breeze to go windsurfing?

Our sympathies go out to our friends to the south in Barra de Navidad and other areas that had some property damages reported…  but amazingly no casualties have been reported as of the time of this writing.  So yea to that.

The one good thing is that Patricia seems to have broken the summer heat.  Temperatures in PV are moderating, and as hurricane season comes to a (roaring) close, the sailing season is ready to kick in!  Our J/80s are in the water (I know, I know, bad timing!) and ready to roll….  let’s go sailing!

Wayne Zittel and the J/World  Team

Offshore Training Seminar Wrap Up

J/70 North Americans

This is going to be a short report as well.  There are some excellent summaries of the regatta already circulating.  As for J/World, we had three boats entered in 2015 J/70 North American Championships in San Diego, and three coaches involved with various teams.  As you might expect in a hotly contested one-design fleet with some 50 boats on the line, ALL the racing was tight.  Seriously, this was way too much fun.  The boats are mostly straightforward, so the big gains and losses are from tactical decisions, strategic plays, and – of course – just sailing the boat to it’s potential!  The three F’s of doing well (no, THAT’s not one of them…):  Focus, Focus, and Focus…



We have been sailing a lot of J/70s lately and are excited about the class.  We have two boats available in San Francisco, and two more in San Diego.  Qualified teams can charter the boats for West Coast events, and J/World is conducting occasional J/70 clinics (visit here for more info).   Of course, we also offer private coaching services, so if you are really looking to get up to speed in this highly competitive fleet, we can assist in jump starting your program.

Wayne Zittel and the J/World Team


Big Boat Series

Hey all, I know it’s a bit late, but the past month has been completely hectic. So now I’m going to catch up.

First off, let’s cover the St. Francis Big Boat Series.  I was fortunate enough to sail with a great group aboard a pretty new J/88.  This is a new and quickly growing fleet, and it was pretty cool to see four boats tied up along the same dock in Sausalito!  As most of the programs are new and still developing out full teams (a couple of the guys are doing a lot of shorthanded events), two of the owners joined forces to do this first Big Boat Series as a learning program.  And a third new owner who just took delivery of his own boat (too late to get ready for BBS) joined us for Friday.  So we had 2-3 J/88 owners aboard and shuffled crew around a bit.  I think the gang learned a ton and I was really impressed with the improvement.  It’s also fun to be a part of such an enthusiastic and cooperative fleet, and I expect great things.  Stay on the lookout for a J/88 clinic in SF  this winter or next Spring!

And a big shout-out to Gary Panariello on the other J/88 in the regatta:  backed by a J/World team from our Annapolis office, they had the boat pretty dialed and tied for second in class (lost the tie breaker to end up in third).






As you might guess from the above photos, it was a pretty mild BBS.  A couple of days had racing postponed waiting for the breeze to fill.  But the nice weather and fun racing made up for that, and the San Francisco wind machine did it’s thing enough to let us light up the J/88 a couple times.  Good stuff!

Ok, that’s the short version of the Big Boat Series….   next up:  the J/70 North Americans!

Wayne Zittel & the J/World Team

2015 Transpac Gallery

So while we still haven’t compiled all the onboard photos and video from the 2015 Transpac, we were treated to some great shots from photographer Lauren Easley, so check these out (and then you can check out her whole gallery at www.leialohacreative.com.


Hula_Girl_FR-22J World’s Hula Girl reaching towards the finish line…

Hula_Girl_FR-20That’s the finish mark ahead of us, 2225 miles from California!

Hula_Girl_FR-19The Hula Girl team, looking good.  We have had a bit of practice by this point.

Hula_Girl_FR-15Our finish off iconic Diamond Head.

Hula_Girl_FR-6The sense of accomplishment at the finish of a passage like this is like nothing else…

Hula_Girl_FR-7High-five’s all around.  This team was truly great!

Hula_Girl_FR-3Hula Girl team looking forward to a Mai Tai (or two) and greeting family and friends in Honolulu.

Hula_Girl_FR-4Thanks again to the all the Hulagains for a job well done!