North American J/80 Class Association
From left to right, the youthful team of Matt Coughlin (tactician), Henry Tomlinson (bow), George Luber (trimmer), and Cam Tougas (helm), won the 2019 J/80 North American Championship aboard Aegir #487 on Lake Winipesaukee September 22, 2019.
Twenty-two teams battled unusually light-air conditions across three days before a champion could be crowned. Hurricane Humberto stalled a high pressure system over Lake Winnipesaukee and the host Winnipesaukee Yacht Club for a three day stretch of sunny but fickle breezes.
Cam Tougas got his name on the J/80 North American Championship perpetual trophy for the second straight year, this time as helmsman aboard the winning boat, Aegir representing Beverly Yacht Club in Marion, MA. Last year Tougas, 24 and a graduate of URI, crewed aboard Chip Johns winner Cavitica from BYC when the event was held in a blustery Marion venue on Buzzards Bay.
This time Tougas and his band of twenty-something friends had to hit the road and change to light air mode with a 2,9,2,1 score to win the championship.
Long waits between races did not dull the appetites of the competitors, who travelled from as far away as Seattle and Austin Texas for a taste of lobster and New England hospitality at Winnipesaukee Yacht Club, home to J80 Fleet 1.
Ten travel teams from all over North America, including Canada came expecting the typical heavy air sailing usual at this time of year. One team claimed they changed the rig tune three times before a race was in the books. Breezes in the 3-5 knot range, included huge shifts in direction, made for challenging racing.
Class Stalwarts Bill and Shannon Lockwood, on the left finished second overall. On the right is PRO Carter White, who hung in and did a great job, despite the conditions.
Henry Tomlinson borrowed his dad's boat to bring himself and his sailing buddies to win the Championship. The trophy presentation was done in typical Fleet 1 style at Fay's boat yard as the travel boats got placed on trailers for the ride home.
complete scores can be found on Yacht Scoring
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