Stone, it seems, is one of those guys who dives into life head first. He had never sailed before moving to San Francisco, but he bought a boat and sailed 50 races the first year. He paid his dues racing IOR, moved on the the J/24, and settled into the J/105 in 1999. "It's just a great boat for the Bay," he says. "The 105-percent jib is perfect for the big breeze, and you can roll it up at the windward mark, which is nice. The boat is easy enough to handle, so you can focus on tactics. And you don't need to have five 200 pounders on the rail. We've had 115-pounders doing bow or pit, so it's a great boat for a mixed-sex team. Plus, compared to other similarly sized boats, you need a lot less crew, which is great for today's economy."