March 16, 2012

Clipper Race ‘Greeters’ Announced

The 10-boat fleet in the ’11-’12 running of the Clipper Round the World Race is on their way to Oakland from Qingdao, China.

© 2012 Karl Monaghan/onEdition

Despite San Francisco Bay’s reputation as one of the finest sailing venues in the world, it has rarely been chosen as a stopover for around-the-world races. Early next month, however, the 10-boat Clipper Round the World Race fleet will blast beneath the Golden Gate en route to their Leg 6 finish line off the Golden Gate YC.

Immediately after completing the 6,000-mile leg from Qingdao, China, each boat will proceed to Oakland’s Jack London Square, which will serve as their home base during their visit — which will include dockside tours for race fans during the Strictly Sail Pacific boat show (April 12-15).

Latitude 38 was chosen to greet Gold Coast Australia when she arrives at Jack London Square early next month.

© 2012 onEdition

To insure each boat gets a warm reception — and to expand public access to the fleet — each boat has been assigned a host organization from the local marine community. We were thrilled to learn that Latitude 38 drew Gold Coast Australia in the sponsor lottery, as she is the current event leader. (And no, we didn’t bribe the race committee for that honor.)

Other affiliations are: Encinal YC sponsoring the Dutch entry De Lage Landen; OCSC hosting Derry-Londonderry; Corinthian YC with Edinburgh Inspiring Capital; Richmond YC with Geraldton Western Australia; J/World with Singapore; Club Nautique with New York; Dragonboaters with China; California Canoe & Kayak, Bay Green and Bay Crossings with Visit Finland-Welcome to Yorkshire

While the Gold Coast crew arrived in third place at Qingdao, they’re holding the lead in Leg 6 to Oakland. Let’s welcome them in style!

© 2012 onEdition

One of the main responsibilities of these sponsors will be to organize a throng of revelers to greet their vessel at the Jack London guest dock whenever it arrives — day or night. We strongly encourage you to join in the fun and volunteer to assist one of these sponsoring organizations. And we’d be thrilled to have you help the Latitude staff welcome Gold Coast Australia.

For more info on this thrilling romp around the planet — including a real-time racing tracking chart — click here.

Nuku Hiva Murder Suspect Update

With a lot of Puddle Jumpers having left or getting ready to leave the West Coast of the America’s for French Polynesia, lots of cruisers are probably wondering whatever happened in the case of Stefan Ramin, the German cruiser with the 46-ft catamaran Bayu, who was found murdered last October. Liz Clark of the Santa Barbara-based Cal 40 Swell reports that Henri Haiti, the Marquesan suspect, finally came out of hiding and turned himself in. "The last I heard was that he’s claiming it was a case of self-defense because, according to Haiti, the German cruiser tried to rape him!" For what it’s worth, Ramin was cruising with his girlfriend of many years.

In any event, Liz says, "I want to assure everyone that it was a very random occurrence. I’ve had nothing but wonderful experiences since I’ve been here, even in the same valley where the crime occurred."

The heck with ‘Where’s Waldo’, where’s La Gamelle? This already being late in the season, most boats aboard the Dockwise ship had been picked up in Florida or St.
"As we were headed to South Beach Harbor on Saturday morning, we saw two antique-looking tall ships leaving the City and heading toward Sausalito," writes Jan Wigle of the Brickyard Cove-based Ericson 38 Wiggle Room.
Since many long-term cruisers now have their own blogs — which tend to detail every tiny moment of every single day of their travels — sailors new to the cruising life may find themselves smothered under an avalanche of information, in contrast to a couple of decades ago when topical cruising info was relatively hard to find.