July 17 - San Francisco Bay
Craig Page's Wuda Shuda returned to the PICYA fray. The little Soverel 25 has won several 'Little Liptons' for San Francisco YC in the past few years.
A smallish fleet of 16 boats from nine different yacht clubs turned out for the annual PICYA Championships over the weekend. The three-race series and its historic trophies - the Lipton Cup, Larry Knight Perpetual, Little Lipton and Admiral's Cup - traditionally pits teams from all area yacht clubs against one another to determine bragging rights for another year.
Hardhat area! - John Clauser and the Bodacious Berkeley bunch try to hold off Ed Durbin's Mistral.
The same basic fleet as last year showed up - even the four division breaks were almost the same - and racing was conducted in much the same breezy conditions. The two races on Saturday were sailed in fog, but Sunday it burned off, except for a picturesque 'tourist fog' clinging to the Golden Gate (over just the roadway, leaving the towers exposed at the top and bottom).
They didn't have an award for 'wettest ride', but if they had, Bill Royall's SFYC-based Rhodes 19 Big Wow would have won it.
Who won? Wish we could tell you. Results had not yet been posted as this edition of 'Lectronic Latitude hit the digital street. Find them later today at www.picya.org.
Kyle Elliott's Fast Friends out of SFYC battles three generations of the Nash family on RYC's El Gavilan.
Vintage Fleet Competes at Plastic Classic
July 17 - San Francisco
While many serious Bay Area races are shrinking in size, the Bay View Boat Club's loosely-run Plastic Classic seems to be drawing larger fleets each year.
Perhaps it's because the price of admission is minimal, you don't have to be a yacht club member to compete, and you needn't feel embarrassed if your rust-stained sails have lost their shape. The fun-loving Bay View crowd, in fact, likes to describe their organization as the un-yacht club. What their races may lack in professionalism, they make up for with an open-door attitude and raucous post-race parties.
A record 65 boats competed this year, with Brain Lee's Coronado 25 Suzy III taking top fleet honors - how often would that happen elsewhere? - followed by John Chile's Columbia 22 $1 Baby in second and Joe Balderama's Express 27 Archidmedes taking third. See the August Latitude 38 for a full report, or see www.plasticclassic.com for full results.
Viveka and Janice
July 17 - San Francisco Bay
Something old, something new - Merl Peterson's lovely 75-ft schooner Viveka, built in 1929, was out sailing this past weekend, as was the new 130-ft Dubois sloop Janice. Built in New Zealand, the big boat made a stop here before continuing on to Europe.
Hawaii Races Winding Down
July 17 - Pacific Ocean
West Marine Pacific Cup
Led by the Swede 55 The Contessa, the bulk of the 42-boat Pacific Cup fleet rolled into Kaneohe Bay over the weekend.
The Swede 55 The Contessa was first boat into Kaneohe in this year's Pacific Cup.
The Contessa, a doublehanded entry sailed by Shawn Throwe and Neil Weinberg, arrived at 11:40 a.m. local time. Second in about three hours later was Division E entry Lightning. Having started two days later, Tom Akins' well-sailed SC 52 also had the fastest elapsed time of 9 days, 3 hours, 5 minutes - not a record, but a fine run nonetheless. Although official standings must wait until all boats have finished, it appears both of these boats won their respective divisions.
Other provisional winners include:
All yachts are expected to finish by Wednesday. For more: www.pacificcup.org.
By the time you read this, all 14 official entries in the Singlehanded TransPac should be anchored in beautiful Hanalei Bay, Kauai, bringing to an end perhaps the most brutally slow race in this event's history. Arriving Saturday afternoon - conveniently right before the awards ceremony - was Ken Stuart on Second Chance. That left only the race's two smallest boats, Paul Woodward's Kirby 24 Hesperus and Chris Humann on the Dana 24 Carroll E. Unfortunately, Hesperus's rudder "fell off" a couple of hundred miles from the finish. All Solo T-Pac'ers are required to carry emergency rudders, but that broke, too. So Paul had rigged warps and was proceding to Hanalei at a blistering 2-3 knots. Just to be safe, Chris on Carroll E slowed down and sailed alongside Hesperus.
Paul Woodward's Hesperus finished the Singlehanded TransPac last night - without a rudder.
Carroll E will of course receive redress for his good deed, which may affect the standings in Division D. At this writing, however, Synthia Petroka had won that division aboard the Hawkfarm Eyrie. Other winners are:
Division A - Alchera, J/120, Mark
Commodore Toys with the Dark Side
July 17 - Opua, New Zealand
In the continuing adventures of Commodore and Nancy Tompkins down under, Nancy writes, "Just when I think we are going cruising, everything changes."
Commodore, long a most conservative of
sailors, is toying with the dark side by accepting a catamaran
delivery from New Zealand to Japan. He once delivered Profligate
from Cabo to San Diego, and wrote a single-spaced multi-page
letter describing why we should "sell cat immediately."
The very bright Zephuros in Tonga
Photo Courtesy the Tompkins
Nancy says that, "Current plans are
to secure our Thula Mama mates for crew. They have extensive
cat experience and are young and lively! Anna and Dave Fourie
are currently living in Brisbane, Oz. We hope to leave New Zealand
for New Cal by the end of July, leaving Flashgirl in Opua,
Bay of Islands. Once Zephuros is secured in New Cal, we'll
fly back to NZ and pick up our 'girl for some cruising:
Tonga, Fiji and New Cal (Vanuatu if we have enough time).