With the first of the new full-foiling Olympic Nacra 17 scheduled for delivery very soon and the ranking-essential Euros just around the corner, one of Team USA’s best hopes for a medal was messing around in Holland, preparing for the coming battles above the water. The Keith Brash video above (and there’s another gorgeous one here) is of double Moth world champ Bora Gulari along with his new crew, 2016 FX competitor (and soon to be Stanford Masters grad) Helena Scutt. And clearly, smart is fast – check out this video for the first-ever of a Nacra 17 nailing a foiling gybe. Head over to Bora and Helena’s Facebook Page here and like and share them. Let the Olympic flying begin! For the rest of the story from Sailing Anarchy CLICK HERE!
Posts in category on board
We continue to be impressed by the outside-the-yachting-box thinking of Race 2 Alaska organizers, with the latest coming via their infographics department. Click this link to get to the interactive version, and head over to one of just 12 of last year’s episodes of CNN’s “Really Great Big Story” for a gorgeous and inspiring documentary on three paralyzed men embarking on last year’s journey. With R2AK’ers verbosity approaching that of the Everglades Challenge hippies and survivalists, the forum thread on the race is a veritable cornucopia of info on the event. Go there... For the rest of the story from Sailing Anarchy CLICK HERE!
Gunboat boss Nils Ericson got bored on the plane to the Caribbean and came up with this gem of a Form Guide for the high performance, HNW, hard-partying luxury cat racing class at the BVI. This is too good a piece for plain old pimpin’, but always consider the source! Hot on the heels of the St. Thomas International Regatta, this year’s BVI Spring Regatta may well feature the hottest collection of performance multihulls ever assembled on Virgin Island waters. This burgeoning market segment is seeing new players in what was once Gunboat’s private playground, and with events not only in the Caribbean but in places like Palma (where last summer’s Multihull Cup attracted 3 Gunboats, an HH-66, MC2-60 and APC78), the future of big multihull sailing looks bright indeed… For the rest of the story from Sailing Anarchy CLICK HERE!
Clean Report – For episode #20, we caught up with three guys who represent some of the brave new thinking in the sport of sailing. Longtime SA’er Chris Woolsey runs the reborn Miami Havana Race for a reborn SORC, and we get into the whys and hows of recreating this complicated international race to one of the world’s most unique race destinations. After that, we catch up with Tim Fitzgerald, founder of Charleston’s Fort2Battery Race, to talk about his motivations for creating the successful harbor sprint. We also get into Tim’s experience as one of the drivers behind Selden Masts growing dinghy business, discuss the first new hardware change in the 420 in years, and learn what Tim’s learned about getting millennials and Gen Z excited about sailing. Finally, we turn to one of those Z’ers, young Peter Cronin of the Mudratz. This clever kid discusses the team’s experience sailing amongst the big dogs in the Melges 24 and J/70 Class and the philosophy behind their growing Mudratz youth sailing movement in the Northeast… For the rest of the story from Sailing Anarchy CLICK HERE!
We’re not sure what it is about Conrad “The Crazy Kiwi/Friwi” Colman, but every race he enters becomes an Odyssian epic. His Global Ocean Race, Barcelona World Race, and now Vendee Globe have been long, grinding, obstacle-strewn voyages, and through conquering them, he’s proved to be one of the toughest son of a bitches in all of ocean racing. Conrad arrived in Les Sables D’Olonne yesterday after a two-week slog under jury rig to finish his first Vendee Globe, the first by a kiwi skipper, and the first-ever round-the-world finish without using a single drop of diesel or gasoline, and if we could get the busy man on the phone, we might be able to bring you a full debrief. Until then, we’ll give you the full finish report from his media team. Photo thanks to BRESCHI/Foresight Natural Energy with a full finish gallery over here... For the rest of the story from Sailing Anarchy CLICK HERE!
There’s a new player in on-the-water drone work, and if this quick peak of M32 catamaran racing on Biscayne Bay from earlier this month is any indication, they’ve got the goods. Check out Up Top Photography’s other work here, and head over to M32 North America on Facebook to check in with the fastest one-design fleet racing in the USA… For the rest of the story from Sailing Anarchy CLICK HERE!
While the 2017 Pineapple Cup once again sees a tiny fleet taking the start line in just a few minutes’ time, we’re happy to see the race happening for another year. It’s the ultimate Western Hemisphere big boat race course, and it always provides great stories for the competitors and for those of us stuck on dry land. Here’s a pre-race report from Michael Hennessey aboard the Class 40 Dragon. Pre-race photo gallery at the event Facebook Page and track the fleet here… For the rest of the story from Sailing Anarchy CLICK HERE!
Brynn’s dexterity on a big air tack in Key West earlier in the month got superstar video producer (and C&C 30 crew) Petey Crawford’s creative juices flowing with this video, and her Extreme 2 team’s continued dominance in the Class convinced us to name her our Sailor Chick of the Week! For the rest of the story from Sailing Anarchy CLICK HERE!
With the Solitaire Du Figaro (née Course L’Aurore) getting close to it’s half-centennial birthday, the brilliant illustrators at Chevalier Taglang have put together a beautiful pictorial history of the of the world’s most prestigious solo coastal race. The post itself (as translated by Raven Yacht Sailing Trivia here) includes line drawings and more on every winning Figaro design since the beginning way back in 1970… For the rest of the story from Sailing Anarchy CLICK HERE!
If you’ve been scared to make the move to electric propulsion, the time is now, and we thank our friends at Stephens Waring Design for making repowering with a Torqeedo look so easy. Here’s how they did it for Azulita – go to their site to find out more and sign up for their industry-leading newsletter.
Thanks to the folks at Torqeedo, getting rid of that silly old internal combustion engine has never been easier.
Back in 2014, one of our favorite smaller designs, The Signature Series 24, got a loving prototype build up at the Northwestern School of Boatbuilding, in Port Hadlock, Washington. Christened Azulita at the Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival, that year, this little Spirit of Tradition honey has since made her way to the mid-west. These days she charms her current owners daysailing on Lake Michigan.
(Go ahead, waste the morning and check this video of her footing around in, at most 5 knots of breeze. We look at this clip all time. And dream. She’s really is the perfect little boat.)
Like a lot of small boats, Azulita bumbled through the grim auxiliary power issue with the usual stupid-ugly, side-mounted, small-horsepower electric “sheer killers,” oh sorry … motor.
So late last year, we were thrilled to from Auzilita’s owner: Praise the heavens, he he wanted to retro-fit in a new, way-slick propulsion system. A Torqeedo ‘Cruise’ fixed pod and dump the side-mounted Cuisinart from hell that had become too painful for the owners to handle. And if you have not checked out these small, all-in-one electric power systems, by all means do. For $5,000 — or about the same cost as a combined outboard, control system, and fuel tanks — you get a motor, a battery control system, a throttle, a battery, cable, parts and clear enough instructions so any competent yard can install the system in less than a day.
In fact, we think the Torqeedo is so simple, you could probably install the thing yourself. So in that DIY/SOT, we’re including some of our working drawings to help you get started.
Here’s some notes…
SORC once again delivers on one of the quickest races in the land, this time, a recordbreaker. From Chris Woolsey (and go here for more great photos from Marco Oquendo and the SORC media team):
Every so often, the weather gods deliver the famous conditions that bring people back to the Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Race year after year after year. For starters, winter storms up north usually have folks looking to points south by the time the new year rolls around. South Florida and the warm waters of the Gulfstream always provide a welcome place to thaw out. Couple that with the South Florida winter cold front cycle of a new blast of NE breeze every few days, which allow high speeds on nice waves down and around the bend of the Florida Keys to the Happy Place known as Key West, and you have a recipe for something more fun than shoveling snow and crossing items off of the honey-do list.
So it goes to figure that those blasting conditions would coincide with the race date roughly every other year, delivering racers to Key West overnight as quickly as (I Dream of) Jeannie can fold her arms, blink and say “Pepe’s!” As is sometimes the case, those conditions were a bit overdue, with the last all-out downwind romp coming in 2007. Those who made it for the 2017 running, hosted as always by Lauderdale Yacht Club and Storm Trysail Club, finally got a treat.
As a result, David and Peter Askew, and their all-star crew (including AC legend Marco Constant, Star world champ Phil Trinter, Ralf Steitz, Chris Larson, and half the Alvimedica VOR team) on the Reichel Pugh 74 Wizard romped across the finish line in record time, and pushed Carrera’s 2005 monohull record run to second-best by a few minutes. Jason Carroll’s warhorse Gunboat 62 “Elvis”, with Anderson Reggio navigating, crossed a few minutes later to take the overall quickest time (thanks to a later multihull class start), but never threatened Stars & Stripes record pace of last century. The happy crew revelled in letting the big cat get out and really stretch her legs in the fresh conditions.
The rest of the fleet is still rolling in and we may yet see some surprises in the results. Hook in, hold on and stand by.
Looking for an extra $10,000 while you’re lounging in the Caribbean? Read on.
A young English couple and their two adorable kids saw their cruising dream fall apart just before Christmas when they abandoned their disabled yacht Dove II in sporty conditions about 500 miles East of Antigua. Two Chinese cargo ships couldn’t make the rescue, but the lee they created while standing by helped the crew of the charter Discovery 67 Tilly Mint pull the crew of Dove to safety with a life raft. Here’s an excerpt of the rescue story from the rescuees, and head over to their blog for an extremely positive look at the aftermath of a decidedly non-positive experience. The story begins with the disintegration of Dove’s rudder, here.
Around 5 o’clock a lot happened, Falmouth coastguard rang and advised James to leave the vessel, Fort de France followed and advised the same, Newseas Jade moved towards us, into a position to create a lee and Tilly Mint bounced around next to us looking gorgeous. When they’d radioed the night before they had sounded so professional, now we could see them and they looked professional.
We confirmed the plan on the radio and then it all happened so fast, Jim deployed the life raft off the back of the boat and then we had a moment, it was probably three seconds long but it was beautiful and broke my heart all in one and then I jumped, off the boat and fortunately into the life raft. Now I must pause here, when you think of life rafts you think I could do that, I could hang out in a life raft, drifting around, life would be fine and I’d survive. No, just no. This one was a six man raft, it was tiny and you feel incredibly exposed and open to the elements, it’s sitting on a piece of plastic floating over 4000ft of sea? I got on my knees and James basically threw me Heath, he was so brave, I hadn’t witnessed him and James’s goodbye but he just sat where I told him, didn’t scream, didn’t cry, he just said “Mummy, I don’t like this!”
Isla came down next and again she landed in my arms in the raft, she was very scared but she sat down next to Heath. I was saying things like ” its like a paddling pool!” But as I looked at their faces they were just scared and in the end I just said repeatedly “you’re fine, we’re going to be ok” Tony appeared in the raft and James cut us free, we were off the boat, we were in a life raft in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. This is a shit situation but we’ve got to get out of it and we unfortunately have to do that ourselves, so we all tried to stay calm.
Now, about that 10 grand: The patriarch of the Dove family posted this today: URGENT $10,000 REWARD FOR RECOVERY. Sadly we had to abandon our yacht DOVE II 460nm due east of Antigua on the 21/12/16. We are now trying to find out where it is with the hope of recovery and carrying on with our adventure. It should now drifting towards the islands. Could I ask people to keep a sharp lookout for it and report any sightings to myself or the coastguard. Many thanks, James.
You can read the full story of what actually went wrong on our blog.
Find out where the yacht is likely to drift by cruising the thread. Photos from the Dove II blog.
Conrad Colman continues to prove that he is an ‘innovate or die’ kind of dude. The first all-electric propulsion in the Vendee Globe. The first drone shots from a solo racer in the Southern Ocean. And now – the first podcast from an Open 60, via Soundcloud. The tech to pull this off has been around for the better part of a decade, and it’s amazing no one has done it before now, but that’s why Colman is one of our favorites – because he is always in search of new ways to share the sport with the world.
This one is only 3 minute long, but we really do suggest you find a good set of headphones and turn them way up before you click ‘play’ if you want a taste of what a Southern Ocean cold front feels like.
Shout out to one of the best kids’ movies ever; a reminder that not all cartoons need to be corporatized drudge from Disney and friends.
It’s not going all that well for the current Melges 24 World Champion (while the US 470 team is showing the rest of the fleet their asses aboard Conor Clarke’s ultra-fast Embarr). Here’s the midweek report from Chris Rast’s EFG Bank team (thanks to Swiss Performance Sailing). Pierrick Contin photo with full galleries, interviews, and live video that’s so bad it’s fun to watch – all here.
Sailboat racing is a funny thing. You can feel so prepared for the first day of racing and still fall short. The EFG Sailing Team did not have such a great day out on the water. We had a few problems downwind and at times didn’t find the fastest upwind mode. Nevertheless, no one on the team gave up and we stayed focused until the finish of the last race of the day.
So what do you we do now? WE FIGHT! It has been only three races and we have another nine races to go. Anything can happen in this fleet and the forecast is for lighter wind over the next few days.
The winners of the day were Conor Clarke and his stellar crew including Dave Hughes and Stu McNay. They were the fastest and smartest boat how there. They are closely followed by Airforce One with Bora Gulari on the helm and Jonathan McKee on Tactics. We are looking forward to applying some of our learnings to tomorrow’s racing.
Time for a good night sleep and dream of better day.
We’re not sure how it would do in the UK’s hit new ‘Fast 40′ class, but Melges 40 depositors who want warp speed one-design racing can rejoice: This thing looks like a weapon of war! Spy shot from the dock in Dubai this morning as the brand new Botin/Premier product gets ready for sea trials. Faster than a TP52? We believe…
Thanks to JeffB for the snaps with more in the forums, and go here for videos and all sorts of fun from Federico and the Melges team.
Sam Greenfield may have been the first yachtie to launch a drone off a racing boat, and in just a short time, the world has followed. Quads have become required equipment for the world’s biggest sponsored raceboats, and with good reason: In a race like the Vendee Globe, the ability to shoot yourself from the air at any angle adds an awesome new element to the experience for all of us back home, and the sponsors who pay for it. Kudos to Conrad Colman for his pilotage; let’s hope he has the balls to fly it in some breeze. Colman’s Foresight Natural Energy IMOCA sits midfleet.
A big thanks to MUSTO + Torqeedo for their sponsorship of our European coverage all this month. Please see them at the METS show and tell them ‘thanks’ for the podcasts. If you think you have something interesting to say and you are planning on being at METS, drop me a line and we’ll see if we can add you to the podcast or video interviews schedule.
VPLP has lately become top dog in ultra-high performance racing yacht design, mostly because the world has finally caught up with the French naval architecture whose first-ever design was a foiling trimaran – decades ago. With nearly half the Vendee Globe fleet (and all the foilers) coming from their desk and a big proportion of all the new foiling Ultime and smaller multihull designs coming through VPLP, we decided it would a good time to check in on our old friend and VPLP co-founder Vincent Lauriot Prévost and one of his top NAs Xavier Guilbaud for a chat. Learn more about what they do and why they do it as well as a ton on the Vendee Globe, the Volvo Ocean Race, the new Gunboat and even Olympic racing, as well as the future of this darned foiling craze. Full show notes here, and don’t forget to subscribe to the SA Podcast here for more great shows coming this week!
A small handful of media standouts have emerged in sailing over the past few years, and few of them have been more prolific than Brian Carlin. He’s also stayed almost entirely in the fast lane, resisting the urge to take paychecks from anything that ain’t high energy and high adrenaline. Brian takes a look back on his 2016 season with this showreel, and be sure to pay attention to the 2016 Vendee Globe for more great work from the little Irishman.
Videographer Stan Thuret gives us this 2 minute tease of a longer NY-Vendee Race movie to come in a couple of weeks. Pretty stuff from a pretty old boat and an Anarchist skipper we really dig.
Sailing Anarchy wishes all free-thinkers a Happy Independence Day; Mudratz co-founder and sailing cheerleader Brandon Flack sent in a great piece celebrating the shared history of the US and England on this special day. Billy Black photo.
What better way to appreciate Independence Day than to celebrate the success of the WARRIOR SAILING PROGRAM?! In the short time since its founding, the WSP has introduced more than 150 wounded active military or veterans to the sport of sailing. Warrior Sailing program also has a competitive race team participating in both adaptive sailing and open racing throughout the US. These sailors are graduates of the WSP program camps.
Last week’s program concluded with a big first place win for the Warriors in the Newport Sonar fleet at the Clagett Regatta, and some of our former colonial masters in Britain – the boys at Musto – have rewarded the Warriors’ success (and our “First Big Win” in 1776) with a donation of exactly $17,760 of Evolution Dynamic shirts to the program! These shirts will be given out to participating wounded veteran and active military personnel that attend our camps, and we thank Musto for the generous gift!
In Sailing Anarchy Podcast # 7, Mr. Clean caught up with some of the juice behind the badassery that is the Race 2 Alaska just before the start of Leg 2: First, a half hour with race founder and cool-as-stage-smoke square rig sailor Jake Beattie to learn some of the stories behind the race, second, 20 minutes with M32 owner/skipper Randy Miller, who is currently about 270,000 grizzly bear lengths ahead of the second place boat; most likely only major damage or injury will prevent the Mad Dogs from crushing the existing race record. Finally, we spoke with Tritium Racing boat captain Ryan Breymaier shortly before they started (and then withdrew from) Leg 2 of the race. Their story after our Podcast picks up here.
Extreme 2 continued her dominant ways in the C&C 30 class at the NYYC Annual last week, with mast man Petey Crawford continuing his ultra-high octane videography with this highlight reel from the regatta. What isn’t on camera was a stellar Round-The-Island Race crash when the 12M Courageous sailed headlong into the rocks at Fort Adams, but not before t-boning a J/88 and knocking Extreme 2 skipper Dan Cheresh to the dirt with its spinnaker pole.
Courageous retired from the race and didn’t even bother showing up to the protest hearing despite being notified in person (and they lost, of course) but the old boat’s tactician has now claimed it wasn’t their fault. We’ve invited said tactician and several crew and on-shore spectators to provide their view before sharpening up the pitchforks…
Question of the Week
SA’er Lorax asks: “On a hypothetical vessel returning from Figawi today, let’s say there was, unbeknownst to the skipper, a young lady sleeping in the v berth with his bowman.
When she awakes 50 miles from Nantucket, halfway to Boston, and realizes her possessions are still on the island and she is looking at an epic walk of shame. Say she wanted off the boat NOW, but a detour to somewhere on Buzzards Bay would miss us the tide at the canal. I [hypothetically -Ed] felt a drop off at the bus station in the Cape Cod Canal with bus and ferry fare, along with breakfast and coffee were appropriate. There was other talk if our actions would constitute kidnapping or false imprisonment.
We love the recent surge of historical recreations of famous trips; not only do they set out to verify important facts about history, but they introduce a typically diverse and young pool of landlubbers to the soul of sailing. The Hokulea project has been racking up the miles (most recently seen dockside during Charleston Race Week), but the Draken is even more up the SA alley.
While the volunteer crew was already chosen for the America 2016 voyage of this massive Viking replica (from over 4000 applicants!), you can still go and check her out when she visits the Canadian maritimes and then the Great Lakes this summer. And if you really want to sail aboard, here’s a tip from an old square rig mariner: Drop them a line anyway and let them know your background and availability. Typically, there’s some serious attrition on these voyages, and if you’re available, you might just get the call.
Tip o’ the hat to SA’er “Driftw00d”. Thread here.
A fruitcake named Reza Baluchi joined Rimas, the Flyin’ Hawaiian, and Reid Stowe in the illustrious ranks of the Idiot Mariner Society last weekend during a passage attempt from Florida to Puerto Rico in what is essentially a human-size hamster wheel. Reza’s been rescued before, but this time was different, or so sad Baluchi’s website.
“Reza is so confident that he will succeed in this trip because he has carefully articulated every detail it takes to survive. In the years 2010-2012 he survived the dangers of Death Valley, by carefully planning where he would obtain water and rest for the night. By going through this experience, this is when the idea of traveling through the Bermuda Triangle was born. He spent his time running through 120 degree weather on a daily basis and it was no bother to him.”
The Coast Guard picked up Baluchi on Sunday in a ‘voluntary rescue’ and his hamster wheel was being towed to shore. The CG had previously warned Baluchi not to depart, considering his plan ‘unsafe.’ Shocker.
It appears Death Valley failed to turn Baluchi into a successful mariner. Another shocker!
The world’s biggest sailboat pulled out of St. Barth’s Bucket after just one day of racing, and we now hear that owner Jim Clark’s other boat – the world’s fastest monohull Comanche – is currently in second-to-last place at what we think may be her last regatta…ever.
Considering the ultra-high profile nature of the Comanche campaign run by North Sails President Kenny Read, and the fact that the big VPLP maxi is likely to be one of the last, if not the last purpose-designed record breaking monohull ever built, everyone in the sport seems interested in the reasons behind the sudden and mysterious end of an era barely begun. There are some rumors….
We’ve got emails out to the crew (some of whom are allegedly quite angry that they’re out of a job) and will let you know when we get more info. Know more about this multi-source rumor? Send us a note or post up in the thread. Photo © RORC/Emma Louise Wyn Jones
There are a few folks who truly stand out for their thankless, difficult work trying to build a future for this sport we love so much, and Ben Poucher is one of the most noteworthy. He sends us the latest from the WARRIOR SAILING PROGRAM to try to get your support, and to remind everyone that the WSP has nothing to do with the scandalized Wounded Warrior organization – with Ben, your money actually goes to the veterans! If you hate reading, just go and watch this great video about WSP. Thanks to Marco Oquendo for the shot of the program-owned Trebuchet in Havana Harbor.
People who read the SA front page consistently might notice the name Ralf Steitz or USMMA Sailing Foundation on occasion – usually they’re getting some love for their efforts in supporting youth sailing initiatives. But do people ACTUALLY know what they do for sailing? I doubt it. Not only does Ralf continue to support cadets at King’s Point and youth programs like 13Fifty Racing, but he has also committed to making Warrior Sailing Program a sustainable success story. With over 120 graduated wounded veterans through the Basic Training Camps to date, the Warrior Sailing Program is expanding its horizons and challenging its graduates to new sailing adventures! New initiatives for advanced training, offshore sailing opportunities, and able bodied regattas are all on the upcoming schedule. WSP is the lead sailing program in adaptive sailing opportunities for wounded members of the armed services.
So what, exactly, is WSP about? The Warrior Sailing Team is comprised of graduates from the training camps that are ambitious to race at a competitive level. The WS Team will be competing in able-bodied and disabled body events through the spring/summer 2016. The first in a series of inshore training regattas for 2016 is Charleston Race Week. The team’s season will continue with monthly regatta or training events and will culminate this August in Kingston, Ontario for the J22 WORLDS !
In addition to supporting Warriors on the J22 race circle during Charleston Race Week, Ralf and The Sailing Foundation are also offering their newest donated sailing vessel as an awesome platform for pursuit racing during the Charleston eent. The 84 foot ‘Metolius’ will be a sight to see with Warriors taking their new skills aboard from April 14-17. To add another event to the already busy April schedule, The Sailing Foundation is sending Kings Point Cadets along with youth sailors offshore onboard the Foundation Reichel/Pugh 69 Trebuchet in the Palm Beach To Charleston Race April 8th.
The USMMA Sailing Foundation is taking the lead and needs your help to keep these initiatives and opportunities for youth and warriors! Send your support to Warrior Sailing and go to the WARRIOR CAMPAIGN fundraising efforts, or go to the website to see how you can get involved!
If you see us in Charleston, please come introduce yourself! Our top priority is to make the men and women who graduate from WSP camps feel welcome and included in the sailing community. We all owe these warrior sailors a sincere ‘thank you’ for their service and sacrifice. Support Warrior Sailing, not other initiatives that don’t directly impact those that need it the most.
-Ben ‘Pooch’ Poucher, Director
Warrior Sailing Program
This Question Of The Week comes from PNW sailor ‘wristwister’. Got your own hellish experience with a sewing machine or some advice? Share yours.
The first cushion looks like absolute crap. I’ll probably chuck it and do it again.
The second cushion is marginally acceptable, feeling pretty good about that one.
I completely botched up the third cushion last night. Tossed it in the trash.
…and early on I realized my old machine wasn’t up to the task so I spent some bucks on a more suitable machine.
But I must say, the ladies down at the fabric store are getting a real kick out of me. A clueless man walks in and they kind of gather around and trip over each other trying to help me.
Any of you do your own upholstery? After you finished the boat, did you toss the machine and say…
It’s a little mindboggling to realize that it’s been 35 years since the beginning of the “Assymetric Era.” The fact that people are still sailing the most beastly of all symmetric pole dinghies is even more amazing. Photo from Hawaiian Anarchist “Eric!” in the thread he started to get some help sailing her.
We all know Team SCA scored huge during the Volvo Ocean Race. They blew the all-important media exposure and social engagement numbers out of the water while legitimately inspiring hundreds of thousands – if not millions – of girls and women around the world that they, too, could conquer dragons.
But for lovers of competition (and the usually high achievers aboard), their constant back-of-fleet results were always tough to swallow. Endless debates on Facebook and in the forums and constant work from some of the world’s best ocean racing coaches didn’t seem to matter, and while a single leg victory gave everyone something to cheer about, at the end of the day, the girls, well, got their asses handed to them.
At last week’s World Match Racing Tour Opener in Fremantle, Sally Barkow’s all-girls-but-one Magenta Project team once again failed to impress, getting knocked out of the 20-team fleet in the first round. It didn’t seem to matter that they’d put plenty time in the boat and assembled a rock star group of mostly SCA alums: They couldn’t get off the line, and couldn’t make up what they lost in maneuvers or boatspeed. And once again we looked on in sadness, knowing how many young girls are ready to see a female – or even mixed team – perform on the mostly male world stage.
So it was with extreme glee that we opened an e-mail this morning to find that Sally and her Magenta 32 team just took the 3rd M32 Series Bermuda event this past weekend by a point over Ian Williams and his GAC Pindar team, who just cruised to an easy win in Freo against the world’s best match racing multihullers. It may be a bit early to shout about them, but we will continue to have faith, and we hope you do too. Also a shoutout to the second female helm to join the world of M32 racing; it may have been a tough first outing, but multi-time World Champ Deneen Demourkas showed why she’ll always have bigger balls than you.
A huge congrats to Sally and her team, and check back later this week for a full race report from the team. Learn more about Sally and the girls at their website here. For a great profile and interview with Sally, click here.
Bang! goes the gun for the Caribbean 600; is anything quite as pretty as a big fleet of big boats racing into the tropical blue sea? Nice editing work from the RORC guys on this start video from yesterday; track ‘em and watch the rolling leaderboard here. Argue about the race, monohulls and multihulls, and what an asshole Mr. Clean is here.
For bonus coverage, check out Comanche bowman Shannon Falcone, publishing short vids during the race on Instagram.
The French 12-pounder frigate Hermione was famous for her support of America during the Revolutionary War. Her 1997-built replica is famous for being a gorgeously-built copy of an archetypal combatant during the Age of Sail.
Given the miles of rope and literally hundreds of distinct control lines dangling in the air, it’s hard to imagine any camera platform more suited to shooting this historic platform than a quadcopter drone.
It’s about time! Hat tip to Keep Turning Left’s Dylan Winter for finding this great video, and you can learn more here about the replica’s historic recreation of the voyage that brought Le General Lafayette to the rebellious USA.
The Clipper Round the World Race may be a travel agency dressed up as a yacht race, so you can forgive us (and the rest of the racing world) for not paying much attention to a round-the-world ‘race’ that’s always had its share of unqualified skippers, useless crew, and now fatal accidents.
Until now, there just wasn’t much to watch outside the occasional crash or capsize, but all that’s changed with the addition of former Miss Universe Great Britain winner Amy Willerton to the crew of the Garmin boat for the final, cold and nasty homecoming leg from New York to London. We’re not sure how much Sir Robin paid the blonde smokeshow best known for her stunning resemblance to Cindy Crawford in her heyday (see her Miss Universe pic here) but we’re certainly paying attention now – as is the rest of the world. Regardless of who is actually winning the race (and no, we’re not going to look it up), we know which boat we’ll be following, and we salute this latest chick for getting out of her comfort zone for a trip with the potential for some real nastiness. Maybe, just maybe, she’ll get the bug and become a real racer. Fingers crossed, and thread here.
The Canadian Melges 24 contingent loves Miami seafood, but 4-time Canadian Olympian Richard Clarke got more than he bargained for when two fat Spanish Mackerel nearly took his head off last weekend in the Miami Melges 24 Invitational – the ‘test event’ for next year’s Worlds. One fish landed in the cockpit, but it escaped beforethe Zingara crew could bust out the rigging knives and make sushi…results are here.
Photo copyright Petey Crawford, Penalty Box Productions.
This shot from the floor of Jean-Pierre Dick’s Virbac St.Michel shows the broken ribs that knocked the new-gen foiling Open 60 out of the Transat Jacques Vabre last night; the fourth retirement out of the 5 VPLP/Verdier fliers and a clear sign that someone in the design office seems to have gotten these multi-million-dollar beats wrong – very, very wrong.
One of the major innovations in the new boats is a transverse version of the approach to hull design that we first saw in Comanche; instead of a few large stringers in a structural grid over a relatively thick hull, the VPLP solution uses these small semicircular ribs to support an extremely thin hull (4mm in some spots). It’s a significantly lighter way to do it, but if the difficult production process isn’t micron-perfect or if the ribs aren’t taking the load in unison, things go ugly quickly, as JP and Fabien discovered when they went down into the sail locker.
While four foiling boats are out, the final “Mustache” boat is showing why they all bothered, with the new Banque Populaire XVCCIVXIICL sailing an average of more than a knot faster than the ultra-quick previous generation PRB in the same stretch of ocean on a nice run. In a Vendee, that would translate to a couple of weeks’ lead…assuming BP can avoid the speed bumps…
To The Orphanage For You
Our sentimental favorites aboard Adopt-A-Skipper have unfortunately also pulled the plug thanks to a blown out backstay, with Ryan and Nico headed back to Concarneau. What a yard sale this TJV has become! Chat and crowdsource all the TJV news here.
Thanks to SA’er ‘chasm’ for grabbing the shot from Virbac before they pulled it from their site.
It seems every TJV starts off with a nasty gale in Biscay, and the 2015 edition is no exception, with today’s biggest news being the flipping of the Ultime class trimaran Prince De Bretagne. If two of the most skilled multihull skippers in the world weren’t up to the task of keeping one of the least extreme of the Ultime trimarans on her feet in the North Atlantic, how the hell is a fleet of solo sailors going to get around the world? Lemonchois and Bilou are in the inverted boat safe as their shore team decides how best to effect a recovery, and at 120 miles off La Coruna, Spain, there’s some time. More here.
The first foiler in the IMOCA fleet is also out, with Seb Josse and Charlie Caudrelier headed for port to repair unspecified damage aboard Rothschild rather than try a fix when they’re balls deep in the shit. The Dali-foiled Safran’s headed home too, while Jeremie Beyou’s Maitre Coq headed in to Roscoff to try to repair a busted headstay, abandoning shortly thereafter.
The Class 40 Concise is on her way to port as well, with the rest of the Class 40 fleet headed into the suck shortly. Expect a busy night for press releases and loved ones, and our best wishes to all the skippers out there. Stay tuned to the latest in the TJV thread in Ocean Racing Anarchy.
The swan song for the monohull World Match Race Tour gets an extra dose of talent with the ACWS Bermuda in town, and some monster breeze in the wake of Hurricane Joaquin saw Taylor Canfield stomp to a 7-0 record on the first day despite the presence of names like Minoprio, Williams, Draper, Bruni, and Barker. Bermuda also saw its share of wipeouts and rounddowns in the ancient IOR, though we’ve been unable to find any video from the event.
You can follow along on the Tour’s FB page here; props to (we think) Charles Anderson for this shot of rolling thunder above; and the best pics are over here.
Whether it was a case of the girls doing way too good a job of delivering value for their sponsor or simply continuing fallout from the corporate perk scandal that claimed the scalps of numerous top SCA executives, the Swedish paper giant has officially turned over the keys of the Volvo 65 to Knut Frostad and ended their sailing sponsorship as of Friday. According to executives we spoke to, the program exceeded every ROI metric available, and with the new CEO a trimaran sailor and longtime SA reader, we hoped for more.
The girls have split into separate groups as they hunt for sponsorship for a host of different projects, and we hope and expect them to pop up at the Vendee Globe, the next VOR, the World Match Racing Tour, and possibly the Extreme Sailing Series, as well as scattered throughout the offshore fleet. Adios, girls, and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts for giving us – and tens of thousands of little girls around the world – something special to cheer for.
Here’s what they wrote on Facebook:
The whole team would like to thank each and everyone of you for the amazing support over the last three years. We couldn’t have done this without you. The squad will continue the momentum that Team SCA has started with the ultimate goal to find a new sponsor. Thank you for sharing this journey with us #weareteamsca #justthebeginning
Also, a fond farewell to SCA’s Team Doctor, Antonio Zoido, one of the nicest, smartest, and most helpful people we’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting. He died suddenly on Sunday. RIP.
Despite the fun of pop-culture references to Hurricane Joaquin, the third big storm of the Atlantic season ain’t fucking around, and Joaquin will hit parts of the Bahamas today and tonight as a Cat 3 or 4 monster. The storm may not stop her destruction there, either; some of the latest tracks still have it teeing off on a possibly wide swath of Mid or Northeast coast with winds well over 100 knots. So get your dinghies stowed, triple all your lines, and make sure your premiums are paid up – and post video to SA Facebook if you’re brave and/or dumb enough to get some.
Good luck, especially to all the boys and girls setting up the US Sailboat Show in Naptown, and monitor the thread for the latest, including forecasts from SA’er DryArmour.