BAY ACCESS LAUNCHES JF FLEET AT LAKEWOOD YACHT CLUB
Bay Access President Thomas McAndrew has announced that it has purchased a fleet of 18 Flying Junior (FJ) sailboats to promote double-handed sailing and racing on Galveston Bay.
“This is a great learn-to-sail boat for the family with children in middle and high school, which is an unmet need for our young sailors” explained McAndrew. “The beginner sailor can go out as crew with an experienced Skipper, have fun on the water, and progress to an accomplished racer. The FJ boat is also a great way for parents to sail with their children.”
The FJ boat was designed in 1955 in the Netherlands and was built to serve as a training boat for the then Olympic-class Flying Dutchman. It has become the most popular boat in college sailing. With a very clean boat design, it has a beam of almost 5 ft. with an overall length of about 14 ft.
Bay Access is a 501 c (3) organization with purpose of promoting amateur sailing on Galveston Bay. It leases a newly constructed, first class dock which Lakewood built close to its Seahorse Lounge. From the new dock, all 18 FJ’s can be safely and easily launched for quick access to Clear Lake or the Clear Creek Channel. The dock is next to a spacious lawn which is great for flaking sails and socializing, and has close-by parking.
The FJ Fleet, which will be managed by Lakewood’s new Sailing Director Marek Valasek, will be open to the public for organized events such as classes, clinics, and high school regattas. The fleet was purchased after 2 ½ years of service at the University of South Florida.
“One of the primary motivations behind the Bay Access FJ program is to facilitate and promote competitive high school and collegiate sailing on Clear Lake and Galveston Bay,” McAndrew added. “But, we will also have learn-to-sail classes for all age groups, including adults.”