August 9 - St. Malo, France
Two incredible stories are coming out of the approximately
3,000-mile Quebec (Canada) to St. Malo (France) Race. This open
event - meaning anything goes for multihulls between 45 and 60
feet and monohulls 45 to 85 feet - has been held every four years
since '82. But the 2000 edition is resulting in perhaps the tightest
finish of any long distance race. With less than an hour to the
finish, seven of the eight Class A multihulls are separated by
less than 16 miles! The top three boats, Franck Cammas' 'Groupama',
Marc Guillemot's 'Biscuits La Trinitaine', and Yvan Bourgnon's
'Bayer en France', are separated by just 3.3 miles. Is it any
wonder that tens of thousands of French folks are hoving at the
St. Malo finish?
The second incredible story is that Yvan Bourgnon and crew on the comparatively tiny 60-ft trimaran 'Bayer en France' came within a half mile of the 24-hour sailing record just established by 110-foot catamaran 'Club Med'. The bigger cat turned in a 625.7 mile day while crossing the Atlantic, while 'Bayer en France' just covered 625.34. That's less than six hundredths of a knot difference in average speed. The most amazing thing is that 'Bayer en France' had held the previous 24-hour record for 60 foot tris: 540 miles or 85 miles less. It was set by Yvan's brother Laurent who was singlehanding 'Bayer en France' back when she was known as 'Primagaz'. Here's is Yvan's report:
"When you know it's your turn to climb up to the top of the windward hull and take the helm, already the adrenalin starts pumping. I'm going into battle: my heart is thumping 140 beats to the minute and I am constantly aware that anything could happen from one second to the next. I get into my 'ejector seat' (the bolt which holds the mast is only 20 cm) and the see-saw motion begins: my bum lifts off and cracks down on each wave we surf. I feel the boat accelerating: 24, 25, 26 knots..! I use every ounce of strength to grip onto the helm as the vibrations are pushing the limit now. Twenty-seven knots and that's it, no more! The helm gives up...the rudders ineffective, no hold left. But the boat is hungry for more: it increases speed still all by itself: 28, 29, 30 knots! My heart pounds as we virtually take off."
For more details, visit http://www.transat2000.com.
August 9 - Pacific Ocean
San Francisco Bay Weather
To see what the winds are like on the Bay right now, check out http://sfports.wr.usgs.gov/wind/. We were out for 10 hours yesterday, and if today is anything like Tuesday was, you'll have great sailing.
California Coast Weather
Looking for current as well as recent wind and sea readings
from 17 buoys and stations between Pt. Arena and the Mexican
border? Here's the place - which has further links to weather
buoys and stations all over the U.S.
Pacific Ocean Weather
Check out the weather map at right.
University of Hawaii Meteorology Graphic
Seas are relatively normal in the North Pacific.
Have a look at http://www.mpc.ncep.noaa.gov/RSSA/PacRegSSA.html.
For another view, see http://www.oceanweather.com/data/global.html.
Good news in the Atlantic: Hurricane Alberto is down to just
60 knots and is taking a big turn toward the north away from the
East Coast of the United States. Closer to home, Tropical Depression
Four has been kicking up 30-knot winds while meandering around
a couple of hundred miles off the coast of Florida. It's not expected
to be a big storm.
Hurricane Gilma well off the coast of Mexico has also fizzled to 60 knots of sustained winds and may be on the verge of breaking up.
See http://weather.unisys.com/hurricane/atlantic/2000/index.html and http://weather.unisys.com/hurricane/e_pacific/2000/index.html for more.
Tropical Depression Four (left) and Hurricane Alberto
Hurricane Gilma off Mexico
On a recent charter in Alaska's Kenai Fjords, we encountered
everything from sunny, pleasant sailing conditions to near-Arctic
ice, fog and driving rain as we approached the head of Aialik
Bay to attempt viewing a reportedly spectacular glacier (the fog
obscured our view). We'll have a full report and more photos in
an upcoming edition of 'World
Tim Dore practices one finger sailing on Resurrection Bay aboard a chartered Beneteau Oceanis 361.
As we crept up Aialik Bay in a low fog and glacier-cold rain,
David Demarest (whose great-grandfather went down on the 'Titanic') kept a sharp watch on those ice floes.
August 9 - The Pacific Ocean and Cyberspace
Who is out making passages in the Pacific and what kind of weather are they having? Check out YOTREPS - 'yacht reports' - at http://www.bitwrangler.com/yotreps/
August 9 - Hawaii
The racing is over, now it's time for the jury to decide the
In the wee hours of morning during the 150-mile Molokai Race that wraps up the Kenwood Cup, Scooter Simmons of Northern California lost the top part of the mast on his Sydney 41 'Cha-Ching'. 'Big Apple III', Hideo Matsuda's Farr 45 racing for Japan, and 'Smile', Simon Whiston's Beneteau 40.7 racing for Australia, both pulled out of the race to stand by 'Cha-Ching' - which suffered no casualties and was eventually able to motor away from danger under her own power.
When the preliminary results were tallied, it looked as though the Kiwi team had overtaken the Aussies, as the last Aussie boat would have had to put eight places between her and the last Kiwi boat. But since both 'Big Apple' and 'Smile' are due redress for standing by the temporarily disabled 'Cha-Ching', it's possible - although considered unlikely - that the Aussies may have been able to hold onto their lead. Final results will appear in tomorrow's 'Lectronic Latitude. For more, check out the story and great photos at www.kenwoodcup.com.
/ Index of Stories / Subscriptions / Classifieds / Home
©2000 Latitude 38 Publishing Co., Inc.