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Chris Kostanecki Wins J/70 Corinthian Nationals

Chris Kostanecki, hailing from the San Francisco Yacht Club in Belvedere, took his saltwater sailing skills to the freshwater lakes of Michigan to challenge 35 other competitors in the J/70 Corinthian National Championship. In tide-free Harbor Springs, Michigan, Kostanecki and crew Matthew Sessions, Carlos Robles and Scott Kozinchik sailed aboard J/70 Jennifer in a tight series against runner-up Scott Sellers of Larkspur aboard Tres Burritos.

Kostanecki wins J/70 Coriinthian National Championship
They were fast. In fact so fast everything was a blur. Left to right: Scott Kozinchik, Carlos Robles, Chris Kostanecki, Matthew Sessions.
© 2019 Chris Kostanecki

They came into today’s final pair of races with a three-point advantage over the St. Francis YC-flagged Tres Burritos. But Sellers nailed another bullet (his fourth of the regatta) in Race 7 to take the lead. Back came Kostanecki to win the eighth and final contest and become the 2019 J/70 Corinthian National Champion. Keeping excitement levels high, they got a worrisome tenth in the second-to-last race but their bullet in the final race closed the deal. “Fresh water, windy, and the waves were bigger and steeper than San Francisco,” Kostanecki commented. “It was the Pure Michigan experience with world-class people and social activities,” he continued. “We thought we threw it away. Thank you to my team who worked hard in some difficult moments.”

J-70 Corinthian Nationals
Kostanecki’s J/70 Jennifer shows her winning ways.
© 2019 Christopher Howell / J/70 Class

Beyond being a very competitive sailor, Kostanecki is a leukemia survivor who chaired the very successful Leukemia Cup Regatta for SFYC for about 10 years. We’re sure that competitive streak has helped both on and off the racecourse. This year’s Leukemia Cup is coming on Sunday, October 20. You can sign up to join Chris on the water in October here.

J/70 Corinthian North American Winners
And happy winners aboard the Jennifer: Scott Kozinchik, Fairfax, Matthew Sessions, Mill Valley, Carlos Robles, Palma Spain, Chris Kostanecki, Ross.
© 2019 Matthew Sessions

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US Sailing
The Chubb US Junior regatta is kind of a big deal. Lots of hardware is up for grabs, including the Smythe and Bemis trophies and the Sears Cup — accolades that even we here at Latitude remember from our junior sailing days.