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Bay Sailors Pay Tribute to the Lost

April 23, 2012 – Belvedere Cove

(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

More than 100 boats gathered in Belvedere Cove Saturday evening to honor five lost sailors. © 2018 Erik Simonson /

The Bay Area sailing community has been in a state of mourning over the loss of five sailors from Low Speed Chase on April 14. A memorial flotilla was held at sunset on Saturday in Belvedere Cove, just off San Francisco YC, to honor our lost comrades, with more than 100 boats turning out. A bagpiper played 'Danny Boy' as the procession made its way through Raccoon Strait, with many in attendance tossing wreaths and flowers into the water. Eight bells were sounded, five gunshots were fired, and a fireboat sent jets of water into the air to commemorate the lives of Marc Kasanin, Alexis Busch, Elmer Morrissey, Jordan Fromm and Alan Cahill.

Many wreaths and flowers were laid on the water. © 2018 Erik Simonson /

The event was more than touching for those in attendance, it was cathartic. "It was the most beautiful tribute to those lost I could ever have imagined," said Jeff Zarwell, who was the PRO for the fateful Full Crew Farallones Race. "While it couldn’t replace the loss for the families, it was an incredible display of the love and respect this fraternity has for its own."

We'll have a full recap of the tragic events of that day in the May issue of Latitude 38.

- latitude / ladonna

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Fall Crew List Party

Classy Deadline the 15th

See the current magazine here

See the current magazine here.

Sailors Rescue Capsized Kayaker

April 23, 2012 – Raccoon Strait

While Saturday's weather conditions were as close to perfection as one could have hoped — as evidenced by day-long traffic jams as city-dwellers tried to make their escape to the beach — Sunday was a little brisker, with more typical summer-like winds. Those 25-knot+ winds are why Capt. Doug Workmaster, skipper for Captain Kirk's San Francisco Sailing' Sausalito-based Santa Cruz 50 Bay Wolf, was in the right place at the right time to save a young man's life.

Doug Workmaster and Brian Coggin saved a young kayaker's life while on a charter aboard Bay Wolf. © 2018 Kirk Miller /

Workmaster, out on a four-hour charter on Sunday, had already made quick work of a run up the eastern side of the Tiburon peninsula to Red Rock, and back into the lee of Angel Island when he realized that there were still two more hours to go in the charter. "I decided to make the same run for a couple of reasons," he explains. "First, Central Bay was pretty foggy and cold, and also because I wanted to check our new sail plan."

As Workmaster and first mate Brian Coggan got Bay Wolf moving past Bluff Point at the eastern entrance to Raccoon Strait, they saw a partially swamped yellow kayak with no one aboard. Initially suspecting that the kayak had simply been blown off a beach, Workmaster realized someone was most likely in the water when he spotted a paddle floating about 20 feet away from the boat.

"The water was just starting to ebb, and there was about a two-foot wind chop," recalls Workmaster. "As we passed the kayak, we heard a very weak call for help."  After spotting a young man in the water, he set to work getting the boat in a position to pull the man aboard. Once to windward, Coggan snagged the man with a boat hook, and with the help of Workmaster, pulled him aboard.

"Adam was dressed in only boardshorts, a lightweight PFD and glasses," Workmaster says. "He told us through chattering teeth that he and his friend Alex had paddled from Paradise to Angel Island, and were returning when they got separated. He capsized and decided to start swimming for shore."

Workmaster estimates that Adam, 23, was about 400 yards from shore when Bay Wolf picked him up. "He left his kayak and paddle to swim for shore, but I don't think he would have made it. He told us he thought he was in the water for about 30 minutes, but Dr. Art, the man who'd chartered Bay Wolf, and I think it probably wasn't any more than 10-15 minutes. Considering his level of hypothermia, he probably only had another 5-10 minutes left."

Adam was taken below, redressed in warm clothes and wrapped in blankets while Workmaster and Coggan communicated with the Coast Guard about their suspicions that Adam's friend might also be in the water. Bay Wolf, the San Rafael fireboat, and the Sausalito-based Catalina Tahiti all commenced searching for the friend, which was thankfully unnecessary. "For the next 20 minutes, we had an increasingly tense time as we searched in vain," recalls Workmaster. "Then the best phone call came in — Alex and his kayak were safely ashore. Sweet!"

In the meantime, Adam had improved significantly, and Dr. Art believed he could easily make the trip back to Sausalito, rather than try to dock Bay Wolf, which draws eight feet, at Sam's on a falling tide. "Once we got back to Sausalito, we put him into the care of his parents," Workmaster says. "I'm thankful for the support and teamwork of Brian, and that we happened to have a medical doctor onboard."

We bet Adam and his folks are even more thankful. Great job, Bay Wolf crew!

- latitude / ladonna

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Ad: Open Doors at KKMI Sausalito

April 23, 2012 – Sausalito

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Weekend Racing Wrap-Up

April 23, 2012 – San Francisco Bay and Beyond

J/105 start
Twenty boats hit the line of the J/105 start at J/Fest on Saturday. © 2018 Chris Ray /

St. Francis YC hosted 31 J/Boats on the Cityfront over the weekend for J/Fest San Francisco. "On a picture-perfect day on San Francisco Bay, our breezes started light and gained steadily through the day to around 15 knots," said photographer Chris Ray about Saturday's conditions. "With a flood tide for most of the three races, people had a chance to remember and practice their skills without paying too heavily for being a bit rusty, as the racing season starts to kick into full swing."

J/120 mark rounding
J/120s round a leeward mark. © 2018 Chris Ray /

The six J/24s were topped by Darren Cumming's Downtown Uproar, Barry Lewis's Chance took first out of five J/120s, and Jeff Littfin and John Case on Mojo won the 20-boat J/105 division. See for full results.

J/24 downwind leg
Six J/24s on a downwind leg. © 2018 Chris Ray /

Meanwhile, over on the Berkeley Circle, Berkeley YC hosted the Wheeler Regatta, and San Francisco YC put on the Resin Regatta.

Richard Courcier's Farr 36 Wicked in the Wheeler Regatta on Saturday. © 2018 Erik Simonson /

Both races enjoyed bright, sunny skies and plenty of wind on Saturday — lots of racers got their first good sunburn of the season. Before dawn on Sunday morning, San Francisco Bay's natural air conditioner turned on, pouring fog into The Slot, accompanied by a strong westerly and sloppy Bay chop for Sunday's racing.

Double Trouble
Peter Krueger's J/125 Double Trouble in the Wheeler Regatta on Saturday. © 2018 Erik Simonson /

Results from the regattas should be posted soon at and

Checking in on Tiburon Melges racers at Sperry Topsider Charleston Race Week, held April 19-22, we see that Kristen Lane came in second in the 33-boat Melges 24 division aboard Brick House, after a tough battle with Bora Gulari on West Marine Rigging/New England Ropes. Alan Fields of Los Angeles finished third with WTF. Dan Thielman's Kuai scored fifth out of 30 Melges 20s (Russell Lucas's New Jersey-based Shimmer won that division). For more, see

- latitude / Chris

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Ad: Sale Boat of the Day

April 23, 2012 – Chicago, IL

1996 70-ft Andrews Turbo Sled

Super fast fun race winner, carbon fiber construction, updated and refit, 2 keels included, new North Sails. Owner is also selling a 1986 one owner Santa Cruz 70; freshwater and mint condition. Either boat is competitive and capable of winning. Great Boats, Great Speeds, Great Times!

Eric Jones (414) 305-2541

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