We have awarded the Grand Prize of $5000 certificate for a charter in the BVI's from Footloose! Jose was the winner of this prize and he took the time to tell us about his sailing story:
What kind of boat do you sail?
I usually sail a J-24 (we race with the Manhattan Yacht Club) on Tuesday, I am the back up skipper for the boat and trimmer / tactician.
Where do you Sail?
I usually sail on the Hudson, we race in front of Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, the fleet is divided in 2 groups of 14 boats. I have also sailed bigger boats off the Florida Gulf Coast, upper Bahamas and BVI. I also sail an Archambault Surprise (25 ft) from the Hoboken Sailing Club (very popular French offshore trailer sailboat). This was the boat that we sailed for the Sailstice. This was my second Sailstice (we did it last year on the Surprise also).
What was your first sailing experience?
I sailed Sunfishes as a teenager, then life got busy. Got back to sailing 7 years ago, after my wife encouraged me, and I took a weekend course with Offshore Sailing School and got hooked right there. I went thru the Accelerated offshore certification program that took me thru bareboat, cruising, coastal navigation and offshore navigation. I have done the ISAF offshore certification for offshore racing and a couple of Safety at Sea courses.
What is your favorite sailing memory?
So far my best memories sailing are in the middle of the Caribbean Sea, helming by hand, heading south with the Southern Cross as a guide and the Milky Way overhead in Beaufort 5 to 6 conditions. I still get goosebumps with the memories; right there I realized that I wanted to do a crossing eventually.
This year I did the Sailstice with my son, Luca (age 20 months) and my father in law, Mario; the womanhood of my household decided that it was too windy for them to go out and risk splashes from the Hudson. We had 1 reef on the main and 2/3rds of the genoa out from the furler. It was blowing 20 to 25 from the south with a flooding current (going north). My son had a blast as soon as we decided to go downwind and he was waving at all the boats that went by. He also laughs in stitches every time we hit a wake or wave. I was wearing my Sailstice cap and tie-dye t-shirt. All in all it was a great day on the water and Luca even had some time with the tiller.
I love sailing and all that it relates to from charts, celestial navigation, rigging and racing to simply enjoying the self reliance of Corinthian seamanship. Currently I am dreaming of the Bermuda race and eventually getting a spot in the Fasnet. I also dream of crossing the Atlantic with my kids. Currently I am planning my trip to BVI, thanks to Sailstice, with my family and father in law. My 3 year old, Norah, is already complaining the sharks won't let her sleep because they would be making noises outside of the hull and my 6 year old Amalia asked me about beds, heads and galley as she was trying to grasp how we could stay in a sailboat for a week and survive, she is used to the club boats. I already got charts for BVI and we are planning our cruise.
Jose Batlle, MD
Thank you so much for sharing Jose! What a great story. This encompasses everything we love about sailing " I love sailing and all that it relates to from charts, celestial navigation, rigging and racing to simply enjoying the self reliance of Corinthian seamanship." Congratulations on your trip and we look forward to some more pics and hearing about your journey after your travels. We also look forward to you and your kids celebrating Summer Sailstice with us next year!
Jose and Luca handle the Hudson for Summer Sailstice.
Read about the 2012 winner here. When you sign up and sail for 2014 it could be your turn to go sail in the BVI!