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World Race Begins New Year's Eve

December 29, 2014 – Barcelona, Spain

(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

Many Barcelona World Race aficionados think Hugo Boss will be the boat to beat in the third edition of the doublehanded sprint around the world. Needless to say, though, with its route beneath the great capes, just getting to the finish line will be job #1. 

© 2018 Mark Lloyd / Hugo Boss

For offshore racing fans around the world, 2014 will end on a high note, with the start of the Barcelona World Race beginning on New Year's Eve from Barcelona, Spain.

The third edition of this nonstop, around-the-world race has attracted eight two-person teams, all racing Open 60s. Essentially a doublehanded version of the famed Vendée Globe, the BWR is back with an interesting and highly diverse fleet comprised of IMOCA class stalwarts, new builds, amateurs with a dream, and a few wild cards all thrown into the mix. 

Playing the role of favorite has to be the Hugo Boss team of Briton Alex Thomson and Spaniard Pepe Ribes onboard the same VPLP-designed rocket ship that won the last BWR as Virbac-Paprec 3.  Hugo Boss' crew will have their work cut out for them against the Farr-designed and recently modified Cheminees Poujoulat sailed by Swiss skipper Bernard Stamm and the legendary Jean Le Cam of France.

With veteran ocean racer Guillermo Altadill of Spain as skipper, Neutrogena is expected to be one of the top contenders.

© 2018 Gilles Martin-Raget / Barcelona World Race

The race may have two favorites, but it has three dark horses with the über-experienced Guillermo Altadill of Spain as skipper of Neutrogena and Nandor Fa’s brand-new build Spirit of Hungary competing against a rejuvenated and determined Jorg Reichers of Germany on Votre Nom Autour du Monde. The final serious podium contender is the Spanish coed team of Anna Corbella and Gerard Marin onboard GAES Centros Auditivos, who have put in serious mileage together since becoming the race’s first entry nearly two years ago.

Leaving from Barcelona, the race should take about three months and will pass south of the three great capes (Cape Horn, Good Hope and Cape Leeuwin) before returning to the tricky and highly tactical Mediterranean approach to Barcelona.

If racing nonstop around the world via the Southern Ocean is just a bit too intense for you -- but the idea still fascinates you -- why not just go around in 2D, via the BWR game? 

Photo Courtesy Barcelona World Race
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

You can follow the action here. Be aware also that there is not only a BWR app that's downloadable from the site, but also a BWR game that you can play online or on your own device. Check it out here.

- ronnie simpson

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Latitude 38 Crew List

Classy Deadline the 15th

See the current magazine here

See the current magazine here.

Apster Adrift After Skipper Rescued

December 29, 2014 – Central Coast of California

Somewhere off the Central Coast of California, the 31-ft wooden sloop Apster may still be adrift after her skipper was rescued on Christmas Day.

After receiving faint radio calls for rescue from the vessel's unnamed solo crewman, who gave his position as 75 miles southwest of Monterey, the Coast Guard launched a search-and-rescue helicopter, sent out the cutter Sockeye, and diverted both the 734-ft bulk carrier Medi Venezia and the towing vessel Vision to assist. The sloop was reportedly taking on water and in danger of sinking. 

Once the boat was located, the skipper, believed to be a Canadian, was airlifted to safety. Apster was not scuttled, and by now may have traveled several hundred miles down the coast with prevailing winds and currents. Photos indicate she had her staysail up, plus a triple-reefed main. The skipper reportedly was able to diminish the inflow of water (from an unspecified source) by the time rescuers arrived. 

Video Courtesy US Coast Guard

 Apster was built by master shipwright Dan Jones, and was sold to a Canadian about five years ago. 

"She was in as near perfect shape as she could be," wrote Peter Strietmans, who knows the boat intimately. "I saw her a couple of months ago . . . She was built to be a 100-year boat, no short cuts." Many in the classic boat community are hopeful that this one-of-a-kind vessel can still be found and retrieved. 

- latitude / andy

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Ad: Special Package at KKMI

December 29, 2014 – Pt. Richmond and Sausalito, CA

KKMI was extra nice this year, and Santa brought us a great deal on Pettit Z*Spar Pro Gold, which we want to share with you. Bring your boat in to KKMI Pt. Richmond or Sausalito and get an extra special price on our bottom painting package.

Sailboat haulout

© 2018 KKMI /

Whether you gave your boat a new bottom coat this holiday season or you make it a New Year's resolution to have your boat hauled, be sure to take advantage of this Special Package.


© 2018 KKMI /

KKMI Pt. Richmond • (510) 235-5564
KKMI Sausalito •  (415) 332-5564

Online inquiries at

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New Latitude on the Street Tomorrow

December 29, 2014 – The West Coast

No, the January cover was not shot on the Bay. But hopefully it will remind you of sunnier sailing days. The new Sailing Calendar will bring you up to date on virtually every racing event scheduled in the Greater Bay Area this year -- in addition to info on many in far-flung locations. 

Photo Latitude / Annie
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Just a quick reminder that while you may be shivering from wintry temperatures, the January issue of Latitude 38 will be hot-off-the-presses and delivered tomorrow. Pick up your copy at your favorite marine business, or download it for free from the website (it will be ready by mid-afternoon) — or simply read it online, Tuesday. 

While you're at it, you'll also want to check out the just-published 2015 Northern California Sailing Calendar and YRA Master Schedule (also available tomorrow). It will be online Tuesday, and at many Bay Area marine outlets.

The entire Latitude staff wishes you a very Happy New Year!

- latitude / andy

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