Hull #9 Sinsonte II and Harpoen

Hull #9
Hull #9 was purchased by Mr. C. D. Blanchard of Houston, TX in 1961. Her name at that point was Sinsonte II and she was raced under the CCA Rule. Her CCA rating was 26.5 and she weighed in in 15,134 in 1966. The following is a picture of her rating certificate:

Rating Certificate

Sinsonte Rating Certificate 1966, Measured by M. Bludworth

Sinsonte II

Sinsonte II, Owned by C.D. Blanchard (Houston, TX), 1961-1966

In 1966 Hull #9 was sold to Claude and "Mo" Witzel of the San Francisco Bay area. She was transported there and renamed "Harpoen". She has been in the Witzel family ever since and is now owned by Ron Witzel and his sister Valerie. The Witzels have been very faithful in Harpoen's upkeep and she looks fabulous. The following are some pictures taken when she was hauled recently for some work. Notice that her rudder and prop window are unchanged from the original and you can see her toerail drain scupper outlets just above the waterline, showing that she still sits on her designed lines. She has been changed little from the original. Apparently she had a wooden mast originally although I believe most Javelins had aluminum masts and wooden (Sitka Spruce) roller reefing booms. She has since been changed to an aluminum mast and an aluminum boom. She also has a ProFurl roller furler and a full battened main. She is on her fourth engine - a Yanmar diesel. She has likely been changed back to her original ballast configuration as Claude and Mo removed a lot of "lead type" from her water tanks and then installed bladder style tanks to get good potable water. She was weighed by the famous Naval Architect - Gary Mull in February, 1967 at 15,870 but it isn't clear if that was before or after the lead type ballast removal. Since she weighed 15,134 in February, 1966, and hull #7 weighed 15,230 in February, 1967, it is possible that she had some 700 pounds added in late 1966 before her sale to the Witzels.

Harpoen Hauled 1Harpoen Hauled 2

Harpoen Hauled 3Harpoen Hauled 4

In the 60's and 70's, she was raced extensively on the Bay with a PHRF rating of 174 and won the Yankee Cup in 1977. In 1971 she also did the Windjammer Race to Santa Cruz. After the Yankee Cup, she primarily raced in Marin YC local races. Harpoen now does more day sailing than racing. That however, doesn't take anything away from her pedigree or her owner's love of speed. Ron Witzel races Laser Class boats and does quite well. He recently asked Latitude 38 Magazine to make Harpoen a "Boat of the Month". It seems that the editors are not familiar enough with the Javelin Class history and design significance to know what they are missing. Hopefully, with enough info, we can change that.

The following pictures (courtesy of Ron Witzel) do more justice than words:


1977 San Francisco Bay


1997 San Francisco Bay


1997 Harpoen


Claude Witzel


Harpoen Racing in the Bay Area


Harpoen Lookin' Good!


Harpoen - A Thoroughbred Looking For Air


Harpoen Interior

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