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Hawaii Bound

July 14, 2008 – San Francisco

Start of SHTP
(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

Always an eclectic fleet, this year's Solo TransPac entries include (l to r) Jeff Lebesch's Hammerhead 54 Hecla, John Hayward's Valiant 40 Dream Chaser and Nick Ratto's Hawkfarm Kali O Kalani. Photo Latitude / LaDonna
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Not since troop ships departed for the Pacific Theater in World War II has the Bay seen as many sailors waving goodbye under the Golden Gate as it does every July in even-numbered years. Starting July 12 and ending the 19th, some 85 boats and several hundred sailors will have departed our local waters for Hawaii in two separate events, the Singlehanded TransPac and the Pacific Cup. Though not the largest combined fleet — in 2000, there were 85 Pac Cup boats and 23 singlehanders — it's still a lot of boats and people sailing into their own Pacific Theater.

SSS Group
Flying solo - the Singlehanded TransPac Class of '08. Notables include Skip Allan (top row, fourth from left), who sailed the very first Solo TransPac in 1978 - on the same boat! - and Ken Roper (bottom row, center), who at age 78 is doing his 10th Singlehanded Hawaii race - also on the same boat. Photo Latitude / LaDonna
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

The first to bid adieu were the 22 solo sailors in the 30th Anniversary Singlehanded TransPac Race, which started off Corinthian YC at noon this past Saturday, July 12. Twenty-one men and one woman sailed out the Golden Gate under hazy skies and moderate breeze — only to camp within a stone’s throw of the Farallones for much of the night. At the Sunday morning check-in, some racers reported not only single-digit speeds, but single-digit distances in the previous 12 hours. Then the cycle repeated itself: moderate, shifty breeze through the day, followed by a mostly windless night. More of the same is expected today. The small low pressure system causing the parking lot conditions is not expected to give way to more consistent breeze until late tomorrow or Wednesday

Barbara Euser on Islander is the only woman sailing in this year's Solo TransPac. She is one of 11 returning veterans. Photo Latitude / LaDonna
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Despite the fact that many boats are barely 100 miles into the 2,120-mile race, the stories are already starting to flow into race headquarters. One boat turned back due to electrical problems, but expects to restart. At least one skipper has caught fish. Alan Hebert on the SC 27 Ankle Biter had the rather unique problem of a sea lion trying to climb aboard. He finally discouraged it with a few flogs of his foulies.

Seattle’s Al Hughes, sailing his third Solo TransPac aboard the Open 60 Dogbark, is currently the lead boat, but Jeff Lebesch's Hammerhead 54 trimaran Hecla and Don Gray's Jutson 30 Warriors Wish aren't far behind. But it's still a long way to Hanalei Bay, Kauai, and anything can happen. In a bit of déjà vu from 2006, most of the fleet is currently sailing north of the rhumbline in hopes of meeting the good wind when it finally fills in. For more on the participants, their boats and their always-entertaining daily logs, go to the Singlehanded Sailing Society website at

- latitude / jr

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Classy Deadline the 15th

See the current magazine here

See the current magazine here.

Pacific Cup Starts Today

July 14, 2008 – San Francisco Bay

Over in the 61-boat Pacific Cup fleet, the gun fires for the first three divisions off St. Francis YC at 1 p.m. today. These are the Doublehanded 1 and 2 fleets, and Division A boats. The latter includes a mini one design fleet of four Cal 40s. Remaining starts for the nine-division Pac Cup fleet are on Tuesday (Divs. B and C), Wednesday (Div. D), Thursday (Div. E and Multihull) and Saturday (Div. F.). The staggered starts are designed to put everyone into Kaneohe Bay, Oahu, at about the same time at the end of the month. But with good breeze outside the Golden Gate on hold until later in the week, it now appears it will be slow going for the first few divisions, while the fast Division F boats — including the SC 70 Holua, Open 50 Pegasus OP 50,  and TP 52 Flash — will launch like rocketships on Saturday. For more, log onto

- latitude / jr

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Ad: KKMI Boat Maintenance Special

July 14, 2008 – Richmond

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Keefe Kaplan Maritime, Inc. ♦ (510) 235-KKMI (5564)

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Coville Within 200 Miles of Record

July 14, 2008 – North Atlantic

Thomas Coville transat
Thomas Coville wrestles the gennaker aboard his 105-ft trimaran Sodeb'O. With less than 200 miles to go, a building high-pressure system is throwing a wrench in Coville's attempt to break Francis Joyon's singlehanded West-East Transatlantic record. © 2018 Thomas Coville / Sodeb'O

Frenchman Thomas Coville and his 105-ft maxi trimaran Sodeb'O are less than 200 miles from breaking fellow countryman Francis Joyon's singlehanded West-East transatlantic record. Coville has a lead of 192 miles against Joyon's track from 2005, when he set the record of 6 days, 4 hours and one minute aboard his first IDEC shortly before losing her to the Brittany Coast. Although Coville is projected to break the record, it could be a closer margin than it appears right now, as his average speed has dropped to right around 17-knots and he's in a zone of strengthening high-pressure. Stayed tuned at

- latitude / rg

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Weekend Racing Wrap Up

July 14, 2008 – The Bay and Beyond

Sydney Bolger and Caitlin Beavers smoked the competition in the U.S. Women's Junior Doublehanded Championship. Photo Latitude / LaDonna
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Racing concluded Saturday at the US Sailing Doublehanded Junior Women's championships for the Ida lewis Trophy, hosted by Sausalito YC. Long Beach's Sydney Bolger and crew Caitlin Beavers of Santa Ana dominated the 33-boat event which finished up Saturday. The two 18-year-olds came out of the gates strong on the first day of racing, winning all three races that day. They continued their dominance throughout the regatta, finishing 30 points ahead of the second-place team. The top Northern California team was Lindsay Grove and Kelsi Schoenrock in 10th place, hailing from Encinal YC. For more info, check the US Sailing site here.

John Dukat checked in with a report from the nine-boat SC 27 Nationals hosted by Richmond YC July 10-12.

"Rob Schuyler's SC-27, Hanalei, led at every mark in every race of the seven-race series. Rob is a defending National Champion and now five-time winner of this event. The wind built up to a puffy 30 knots at Crissy Field during the foggy long-distance Tour d'Bay Race. Mostly it was a typical Olympic Circle summertime thrash with plenty of rock, roll and round downs. In second place was the local boat First Impression, and Sumo took third."

The Island YC's revamped Silver Eagle Race had a nine-boat fleet and results should be forthcoming on the club's website. We heard the revamped look of the course was popular, and keep an eye out in the August issue of Latitude 38 for more on the event.

After being prevented by the weather from racing for the final spots in her last two major match racing regattas, San Rafael's Liz Baylis finally got a chance to race for a final at Long Beach YC's ISAF Grade 2 Mayor's Cup this weekend. Baylis was undefeated through the two round robins, semifinal, and final.

Liz Baylis
Liz Baylis took top honors in the Mayor's Cup this weekend. Photo Latitude / Sutter
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Finally, Eliel Redstone's Yeofy sailing for San Francisco YC won the Golden Gate YC's inaugural Inter-Yacht Club Challenge this weekend. Sailed in 1D35s, Redstone dominated with straight bullets.

- latitude / rg

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