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JAN PERHSON specializes in sailboat racing photography, particularly of the world's most prestigious and beautiful sailing regattas. Her action photographs of the world's fastest sailboats capture the beauty, thrill, and drama of the sport.

Jan photographs all aspects of sailing, from youth regattas to classic yachts to Grand Prix racing in the world's most glamorous locations.

As a racing sailor and Coast Guard licensed skipper, Jan's familiarity with sailing and the sailing community lends an in-depth element to her prolific array of photographs and articles.

Her photos have appeared on the covers of national and international sailing magazines and in corporate advertising. She keeps the San Francisco Bay area abreast of the latest in sailing world as the Sailing Columnist for the Marin Independent Journal Newspaper, published in Marin County, California.

Jan is based in Sausalito, California and spends winters in St. Petersburg, Florida.

ORACLE TEAM USA 17 sailing on October 1st on the San Francisco Bay. This is an AC72, a 72 feet long catamaran.
Photo: Guilain Grenier / ORACLE TEAM USA

America's Cup World Series San Francisco Oct 2-7 An Introduction.
By Jan Pehrson, San Francisco, California

Racing starts Tuesday, October 2, in San Francisco as this hugely exciting competition builds to its climax in the summer of 2013 - the 34th America's Cup.

At this point in the America’s Cup World Series – preliminary racing to “tune up” crews and boats before the actual 2013 America’s Cup. Up to eleven boats are expected to race this week in San Francisco - Oracle Team USA Spithill is in first place with Emirates Team New Zealand in second.

After this week’s racing, there will be two more AC World Series events, both are in Italy next year : Venice, April 16-21 and Naples May 14-19. Then the teams return to San Francisco for the main event, the 34th America's Cup in 2013.

Just as Valencia’s waterfront was rebuilt for the 2007 America’s Cup, San Francisco’s waterfront is in the process of redevelopment for the 2013 America’s Cup. San Francisco’s Pier 29 is being transformed into a spectator hub for next year's racing. While this venue is under construction, spectators lineup on the Marina Greene to observe the racing.

There are two types of boats involved in the 34th America's Cup. Both are catamarans (two hulls) and both have advanced wingsails instead of a more traditional mast and soft sails.

The first, the AC45, is 45 feet long and raced by a crew of five, plus one guest racer. The AC World Series is being sailed in these boats.

The second boat will race exclusively in the 34th America's Cup: the AC72. At 72 feet long, this boat will have a crew of 11. These monster cats that will be used for the America's Cup Finals next year are being sail-tested now on the San Francisco Bay.

In this edition of the Cup, the teams are getting younger. Historically, the America’s Cup rewarded experience as few other sports do. Now fresh, younger sailors are also coming on board, boasting experience from the high-speed, physically demanding Olympic classes. This athleticism combined with the power of the monster cats makes for crowd-pleasing racing.

America's Cup World Series San Francisco 2012 october - Training Day.
Photo: Gilles Martin-Raget

AC World Series San Francisco Oct 2-7
Training Day October 2, 2012

After training today, racing starts Wednesday, October 3, in San Francisco.

All 11 teams that raced the first AC World Series San Francisco in August return, including (in order of standing): ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL (Jimmy Spithill), Luna Rossa Piranha (Chris Draper), Team Korea (Peter Burling), Energy Team (Loick Peyron), Luna Rossa Swordfish (Iker Martinez), Artemis Racing-White (Terry Hutchinson), Emirates Team New Zealand (Dean Barker), ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS (Russell Coutts), Artemis Racing-Red (Nathan Outteridge), J.P. Morgan BAR (Ben Ainslie) and China Team (Phil Robertson).

Racing was planned to start earlier in the week, but due to the AC World Series regatta coinciding with Fleet Week, racing this week will start Wednesday. The America’s Cup World Series San Francisco is part of what is being billed as the busiest week of events in the city’s history. As many as one million people are expected for events such Oracle OpenWorld (the largest technology conference in the world), the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass music festival, the Mill Valley Film Festival, home games for the San Francisco Giants and San Francisco 49ers, and San Francisco’s annual Fleet Week including an air show by the Navy Blue Angels precision flying squadron.

Racing on Thursday through Sunday will be broadcast on t

The racing schedule is as follows:
Wednesday Oct 3
Match Racing Qualifying
Thursday Oct 4
Match Racing Quarterfinals, Fleet Races 1 & 2
Friday Oct 5
Match Racing Quarterfinals, Fleet Races 3 & 4
Saturday Oct 6
Match Racing Semifinals, Fleet Races 5 & 6, Match Racing Championship
Sunday Oct 7
Fleet Race Championship

Keeping the boat from going over” -- Artemis Racing advanced today with two wins in windy conditions.
Photo: Gilles Martin-Raget

AC World Series San Francisco Oct 2-7
First day's racing October 3, 2012

Today was the first day of racing in this week’s America’s Cup World Series in San Francisco. Teams competed in 20 knots of wind and an outgoing ebb current. The combined effect produced a short steep chop on the San Francisco Bay, but all the boats managed the challenging conditions and there were no major breakdowns.

Nathan Outteridge, the new skipper of Sweden’s Artemis Racing-Red, and at 26 the third youngest skipper in the fleet, said “As you can see it was a bit windier today than we had in training, The waves were quite rough. We got to a point where we thought if we push it harder we might go over. Basically, we just tried to stay in touch and not make any errors. We didn’t make it easy, but in the end we got through.”

Wednesday’s Results (showing the delta of time in seconds)
Team Korea bt. Luna Rossa Piranha, +:02
Energy Team bt. China Team, +:56
Emirates Team New Zealand bt. Artemis Racing-Red, +:50.8
J.P. Morgan BAR bt. Luna Rossa Swordfish, +1:15
China Team bt. Luna Rossa Piranha, +:06
Artemis Racing-Red bt. Luna Rossa Swordfish, +:33
Artemis Racing-Red bt. China Team (DNS)

Thursday‘s racing will feature the first two quarterfinal matches. Also all 11 boats in the fleet return to the water for the first two of seven scheduled fleet races.

Thursday’s Quarterfinal pairings:
Thursday (12:25 pm PDT): Team Korea vs. Artemis Racing-White
Thursday (12:42 pm PDT): Energy Team vs. Emirates Team New Zealand
Friday (4:05 pm PDT): Artemis Racing-Red vs. ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS
Friday (4:22 pm PDT): J.P. Morgan BAR vs. ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL

The Blue Angels flying over San Francisco in between the AC World Series match races and the fleet races.
Photo: Gilles Martin-Raget

AC World Series San Francisco Oct 2-7
2nd Day's Racing October 4, 2012

Thursday’s racing featured both match racing and fleet racing with near-flips and flying hulls In both events. In between the match and fleet action, the Navy’s precision-flying Blue Angels dazzled crowds with death-defying air stunts.

The teams are a blend of seasoned America’s Cup veterans, such as Paul Cayard, Russell Coutts, and John Kostecki, and younger Olympic and World Championship sailors new to the America’s Cup.

In the match racing championship, Artemis Racing-White (Sweden) and Emirates Team New Zealand scored convincing wins in the quarterfinal round, advancing on to the semifinals.

In winds of 9 to 13 knots, Artemis Racing-White defeated Team Korea, while Emirates Team New Zealand beat Energy Team (France).

The two remaining quarterfinal matches are scheduled for Friday afternoon, with Artemis Racing-Red (Nathan Outteridge) racing ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS and J. P. Morgan BAR meeting ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL.

The fleet racing championship is led by England’s Ben Ainslie’s, gold medalist at the 2012 Olympics. Ainslie’s J.P. Morgan BAR crew won the first race by 17 seconds and followed it up with a third in the second race to lead the series with the high score of 21 points.

Fleet racing (After 2 of 7 races)
1. J.P. Morgan BAR (Ben Ainslie) 1-3 – 21 points
2. ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL (Jimmy Spithill) 8-1 – 16
2. Artemis Racing-Red (Nathan Outteridge) 4-4 – 16
2. ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS (Russell Coutts) 3-5 – 16
5. Emirates Team New Zealand (Dean Barker) 2-8 – 14
6. Artemis Racing-White (Terry Hutchinson) 10-2 – 12
7. Energy Team (Loick Peyron) 6-7 – 11
8. Team Korea (Peter Burling) 5-9 – 10
9. Luna Rossa Piranha (Chris Draper) 9-6 – 9
10. China Team (Phil Robertson) 7-10 – 7
11. Luna Rossa Swordfish (Iker Martinez) 11-11 – 2


Photo of Paul Cayard courtesty of Paul Cayard

Photo of John Kostecki courtesy of John Kostecki

America’s Cup World Series San Francisco
Racing Day 3 October 2-7

Fridays racing, the third day of racing at America’s Cup World Series San Francisco, featured the completion of the quarterfinal round of the match racing championship and races three and four of the fleet racing championship.

In the match racing, ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL defeated J.P. Morgan BAR and Artemis Racing-Red beat ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS.

In tomorrow’s semifinal round, Spithill will race Artemis Racing-White and Outteridge will take on Emirates Team New Zealand .

After the two match races all 11 boats sailed the two fleet races with Ainslie the frontrunner in that championship. The five-time Olympic medalist posted a 1-2 to his scoreline and leads with 43 points. Second is held by Hutchinson, who scored a 2-1 and has 34 points, and third by Outteridge, who scored a pair of fourths and has 32 points.

Both ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL and Artemis Racing-Red benefit by youthful skippers following the orders of experienced tacticians with local San Francisco Bay knowledge.

Jimmy Spithill ‘s tactician, sitting in the front of the boat and calling all tactics, is 48 year-old John Kostecki. Kostecki is remembered in Valencia as the tactician who in February 2010 won the America’s Cup for challenger BMW Oracle against Swiss defender Alinghi and thus brought back the oldest trophy in sports history to the United States after 15 years. Kostecki grew up sailing on the San Francisco Bay, and today made young Jimmy Spithill look far more experienced than his 33 years.

26 year-old Nathan Outteridge’s tactician is another practiced San Francisco Bay Area Sailor, Paul Cayard. “When I was a kid and did my first America’s Cup, all the old experienced guys were in the back of the boat,” said Cayard. “Now, the kids waltz in with their gold medals and get right on the wood (tiller) and the 53-year-olds are on the bow. It’s upside down.”

AC World Series San Francisco Fleet Racing Championship (After 4 of 7 races)
1. J.P. Morgan BAR (Ben Ainslie) 1-3-1-2 – 43 points
2. Artemis Racing-White (Terry Hutchinson) 10-2-2-1 – 34
3. Artemis Racing-Red (Nathan Outteridge) 4-4-4-4 – 32
4. ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL (Jimmy Spithill) 8-1-6-5 – 29
5. Emirates Team New Zealand (Dean Barker) 2-8-5-6 – 27
6. Energy Team (Loick Peyron) 6-7-7-3 – 25
7. ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS (Russell Coutts) 3-5-8-7 – 25
8. Luna Rossa Piranha (Chris Draper) 9-6-3-10 – 20
9. Team Korea (Peter Burling) 5-9-10-8 – 16
10. China Team (Phil Robertson) 7-10-11-9 – 11
11. Luna Rossa Swordfish (Iker Martinez) 11-11-9-11

That’s Oracle Team USA Spithill spraying champagne at the prizegiving after winning the AC match race championship.   Left is Jimmy Spithill, next to him tactician John Kostecki.   
Photo:  Jan Pehrson

The capsize of Oracle Team USA Spithill: 
Photo:   Gilles Martin-Raget

AC World Series San Francisco Oct 2-7
Racing Day 4, October 6, 2012

Saturday’s racing -- the fourth day of racing at America’s Cup World Series San Francisco. I spent the afternoon sitting on the seawall watching the racing with the crowds. Many of the folks lining the shore were more used to American football than yachting.

“Wow. Awesome,” texted a new sailing fan, taking a picture with her smart phone of the action in front of her face. “They don’t seem to be having much trouble turning.”

Suddenly in the fleet race, dramatic action. One of the lead boats, ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL, going blazing fast in the 15 knot breeze, nose dove into the choppy water, pitching skipper Jimmy Spithill into the cold San Francisco Bay. The crowd got a taste of the extreme sport of America’s Cup racing, billing itself as “the best sailors on the fastest boats.”

31 year-old Spithill redeemed himself by defeating Dean Barker (Emirates Team New Zealand) in the finals of the match race series. Helped in his efforts by a terrible start by Barker and the calls of his cool-headed local tactician John Kostecki, Spithill ended up the day at sunset as the exhausted but elated America’s Cup World Series Match Race Champion.

Racing wraps Sunday, with the fleet racing final race, Great Britain’s J.P. Morgan BAR (Ben Ainslie)virtually guaranteed the win.

Races can be viewed live on