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Weekend Racing Wrap-up

March 29, 2010 – The Bay and Beyond

(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

What to do when you're already in a wetsuit, there's no breeze and you're waiting for racing to start? Daggerboarding! As in, ride your Laser's daggerboard. Photo Courtesy Richmond YC
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Getting around Richmond YC this weekend was a little more challenging than usual, what with the 104 Lasers — both standard and radial — that descended on the club for the class' Midwinters West regatta.  After seven races over the three-day regatta, Cal Maritime Keelhauler Sean Kelly took the 54-boat full-rig division when he recovered from 26th in race five — his throwout — to finish with a 1-4 for a 16-point total, four points clear of Long Beach sailor Kevin Taugher.

The Bay Area's Sean Kelly bested a competitive fleet in the full-rig division at the '10 Laser Midwinters West hosted by the Richmond YC this weekend. Photo Courtesy Richmond YC
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Newport Harbor YC sailor Kieran Chung took the radial division with no score lower than a seventh, finishing one-point clear of Mitchell Kiss. The top Bay Area sailor in the Radials was Domenic Bove in fourth.

A pack of Radials charges down the line. Photo Courtesy Richmond YC
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Twelve black flag penalties were awarded throughout the weekend, the recipients of which received special certificates from the club. Among the other special awards that went out over the weekend included one for sailors who arrived back at the dock with the "stain of shame" high atop their rigs. It read: "The Benthic Community of San Francisco Bay has examined the masthead of _____________ and has found the masthead to be perfectly acceptable in all respects for continued extraordinary service in the interests of mud plowing, sampling and redistribution in accordance with the generally accepted standards appropriate for this one design. The result of the core sample found traceable amounts of bottom paint, no silver, no lead whatsoever and three Canadian nickels. Based on these core samples it has been determined by competent local authorities that this dredging was legal and it is probable that more dredging will be done."

The closest boat to the Bay in the Clipper 'Round the World Race, Cape Breton Island, is only 197 miles away after four weeks of sailing, which means that an ETA of sometime tomorrow is not out of the question. The next closest, Qingdao, is 727 miles away. And our namesake boat, the dismasted California, is being escorted by Hull & Humber and Spirit of Australia, all of which are about 1,180 miles from the Bay, with the two escorts having trouble slowing down enough to keep in touch with California. Make sure you check back at the link above for arrival updates as the boats make their way here.

On Friday we relayed some incorrect information — since corrected — regarding BAMA's Doublehanded Farallones race this coming weekend. We stated that an EPIRB was required, which was not correct. A PLB — as long as it broadcasts at 406MHz — is fine, too. We also indicated that one must be present for the skipper's meeting, which was incorrect. Attendance at the meeting is optional, and you can send in the certificate of registration prior to the meeting. Sorry if we caused any confusion.

- latitude / rg

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Classy Deadline the 15th

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Shipping Container Sinks in the Estuary

March 29, 2010 – Oakland/Alameda Estuary

The Domino Effect -- Thankfully this wasn't the container ship that had the accident in the Estuary. © 2018 Mah Jong

If you noticed some commotion at the entrance to the Oakland/Alameda Estuary on Saturday night, it was because a crane knocked an empty container off a ship at the Ben E. Nutter Marine Container Terminal around 8:30 p.m. The Coast Guard responded but the container had sunk before they got there, so they closed that area to deep draft vessels, broadcasting the closure on VHF every couple hours. Sausalito's Parker Diving was called in to locate the wayward container — which they did yesterday, allowing the shipping channel to reopen — and they'll refloat it today.

- latitude / ld

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Ad: DH Farallones Race & Multihull Expo

March 29, 2010 – To the Rock Pile and Back

BAMA's Doublehanded Farallones Race is a simply challenging race course with only one mark to round. The deadline to enter is March 31!
© 2018 BAMA /

BAMA's 31st Doublehanded Farallones Race is Saturday, April 3. See sailing instructions for new equipment and registration information requirements at DHF 2010 online, or email or call (510) 864-8888. Register today!


"Oh Lord -- I went sailing in a multihull and LIKED it!"
© 2018 BAMA /

BAMA's 1st Multihull Expo Day is Saturday, April 24, at Coyote Point YC from noon-6 p.m. As far as we know, Larry won't be there but if the recent big boat racing in Valencia has you interested in multihulls, come join us to learn more! Info at Multihull Expo Day or via email.

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A Swarm of Solo Circumnavigators

March 29, 2010 – All Over the Globe

Abby Sunderland, the 16-year-old American girl who hopes to become the youngest non-stop solo circumnavigator, is slated to pass Cape Horn sometime tomorrow. Beset with problems immediately following her departure from Newport Beach on January 23 — and, of course, after fixing those problems during an unscheduled (but perfectly 'legal') stop in Cabo San Lucas — Sunderland has since seemingly settled into the ryhthm of her voyage aboard her Open 40 Wild Eyes, if not with the air temperature of wherever she is at any given moment. "Cold holds an entirely new meaning for me now," she wrote on her blog last week. "I don't think I will ever complain about being cold again." This after weeks of lamenting the unbearable heat she endured for most of her trip through the Pacific.

The 'Where's Abby' page on Sunderland's website currently shows Wild Eyes in the middle of Quebec -- we're guessing someone accidentally typed 'N' instead of 'S' in the latitude line -- but this is roughly where she is in relation to Cape Horn. © 2018 Google Earth

Sunderland's father, Laurence, has flown to Ushuaia in hopes of meeting up with his daughter as she passes under South America, but conditions are such — 20-ft seas and 30-knot winds — that the odds of such a visit are not great. Follow her journey at

Sailing a Mini non-stop around the world sounds like 'little' fun to us! © 2018 Alessandro di Benedetto /

Not far from her location is 39-year-old Alessandro di Benedetto, an Italian sailor trying to set a record for a non-stop solo circumnavigation aboard a small boat — in this case, the 21-ft Mini Findomestic Banca. Di Benedetto loves small boats, as evidenced by records he's set in them — the first non-stop solo crossings of the Atlantic and Pacific in a sport cat less than 20 feet — and he does fantastic things in them. This current record attempt started at Les Sables d'Olonne, France, on October 26, and seems to be going smoothly. "My Findomestic Banca is in perfect condition, and is sailing beautifully with the spinnaker hoisted up," he said on his website today. "I feel now, more rested and in better shape than at the start."

Still smiling -- and wearing pink -- after 18,000-plus miles! © 2018 Jessica Watson /

Just 1,400 miles from Australia, Jessica Watson — just five months older than Sunderland — is on the downhill slide to finishing her own non-stop solo circumnavigation. But though she may be have reached Australia, Watson still needs to make it back to Sydney, which means she still has another month or so to go. But so far, other than a smashed solar panel suffered during a near-rollover, Watson's S&S 34 Ella's Pink Lady and most of her equipment — with the exception of a nearly exhausted supply of lollipops — seems to be fairly quite well. Follow her progress at

And just a week or so behind Watson is the young-at-heart Jeanne Socrates, sailing her Najad 380 Nereida. Due to a frustratingly long stopover in Cape Town, South Africa, to replace her engine, Socrates has postponed her own (second) solo circumnavigation in favor of trying to make the start of this summer's Singlehanded TransPac. Even though she's no longer circumnavigating, it's still fascinating to watch her gain on Watson. Having so much more sailing experience, it's not surprising, but it will be interesting to see how long it takes for her to catch up — and even more interesting to see if the mainstream media picks up on it. Read her blog entries at

- latitude / ld

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