JSA of LIS Pixel Championship Regatta Recap

Noroton Yacht Club in Darien, CT, hosted the 2016 Pixel Class Championships on Monday, August 8, 2016. Noroton was selected to host Pixel Champs on the strength of the club’s Pixel Sailors results last year.

Noroton is the home club of Bruce Kirby, designer of the Pixel. His designs range from the single-handed Laser dinghy, by far the most successful one design boat in history, to the 12-meter class Louis Vuitton Cup yacht, Canada One. Kirby remains an active sailor at Norton.

Pixel sailors from around Long Island Sound had to qualify for the class championships at any of four regattas. This year’s regatta included skippers from American Yacht Club, Black Rock Yacht Club, Larchmont, Norwalk, Cold Spring Harbor, and Noroton. The host club generated 25% of the boats on the starting line.

According to Kirby, the Pixel is designed to teach kids to sail together and work together to make the boat sail at its best. It’s the perfect boat to help ambitious junior sailors move from the single handed Optimist Dinghy to larger boats like the Club 420 and Laser, sailed in High School and College.

The forecast for the regatta was not promising: with light and variable winds, averaging only 1 knot. In spite of this, the fleet got an early Harbor Start, and sailed out into Long Island Sound. Principal Race Officer John Bainton, taking advantage of stronger than expected wind and after conferring with coaches, sounded the first warning signal fifteen minutes before the first start was scheduled. The conditions remained favorable but slowly began to lighten, and the fleet completed 5 races, a great test of their sailing skills.

Competition was tight, among the top boats, but the top entrants from Larchmont Yacht Club’s Pixel Fleet won the first race and held on to win the regatta. Skipper Jaume Pujadas and brother Josep Pujadas won with a total of 6 points. They were followed closely by two female sailors, Amelia Jessop and Clara Kruijtzer from American Yacht Club. Another all female boat, Skippered by Allison Troiano and crewed by Anna Seymour from Noroton Yacht club were a close third.

Back on shore, the impressive silver perpetual trophy was awarded to our winners, and trophies for the top three boats were handed out by Regatta Organizer KC Hart. Jaume Pujadas was voted by his competitors to win the Sportsmanship Trophy, and Amelia Jessop was recognized as our top female skipper. Following awards the sailors all gathered for ice cream sundaes.

Thank you to Noroton Yacht Club for hosting a great event, we look forward to seeing its pixel fleet at champs next year.

Written by KC Hart

Edited by Cooper Nefsky