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Thrilling Leg 5 Finish

April 6, 2015 – Itajaí, Brazil

Abu Dhabi approaches Itajai
(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing's Azzam enters Rio Itajai-açu, on the approach to the finish in the 5:00 hour, local time.

© 2017 Buda Mendes / Volvo Ocean Race

Those of us on the West Coast who were not actually sitting down to a holiday meal in the noon hour on Sunday had the opportunity to thrill to an exciting finish of the hardest leg in the Volvo Ocean Race, which did a good job with live coverage on its website.

Leg 5 of the around-the-world race takes the well-matched Volvo Ocean 65s from Auckland, New Zealand, through the iceberg-strewn Southern Ocean, and around Cape Horn to Itajaí, Brazil. A festive late-afternoon crowd gathered there to cheer on the first four finishers.

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing, skippered by Brit Ian Walker, led the way into Rio Itajaí, finishing at 12:30:10 PDT. While that ecstatic crew celebrated, the second place boat, MAPFRE, approached in the light breeze and finished at 13:02:56 PDT.

The Brazilian flag on MAPFRE

As the Spanish entry, MAPFRE, arrives in second place, the Brazilian watch captain André Fonseca, aka 'Bochecha', celebrates with his country's flag.

© 2017 Francisco Vignale / MAPFRE

The real cliffhanger was developing a few miles back, where Team Alvimedica and Team Brunel were jousting for the third and final podium position. Charlie Enright's youthful American/Turkish Alvimedica won the duel, finishing at 1:24:32. Team Brunel came in just about a minute later — this after 19 days of sailing over 6,776 miles of grueling race track.

Team Brunel and Team Alvimedica

Team Brunel and Team Alvimedica appear to be headed to a photo finish for third place in Leg 5.

© 2017 Ainhoa Sanchez / Volvo Ocean Race

Team SCA, which has had equipment problems on this leg, is expected to finish tomorrow morning. Having broken their mast in the Pacific Ocean west of Cape Horn, Dongfeng Race Team is bringing up the rear under power. They made their way into the Beagle Channel for a pit stop in Ushaia, Argentina, to tidy up their rig, dropped out of the leg, and continued on through the safer and more northerly Beagle Channel route to the Atlantic.

The seventh team's boat emerged from the molds at Persico Marine in the Italian Alps on Good Friday. Team Vestas Wind ran aground and broke their boat in the Indian Ocean during the second leg.

- latitude / chris

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New items in Our Chandlery

Classy Deadline the 15th


To Do: Buy Tickets & Reserve Slip

April 6, 2015 – San Francisco Cityfront


Hangin' out in McCovey Cove hoping that a home-run ball will come your way is always fun. But we like our combo plan better: daysail, tailgate party, inside-the-park seating, then a sleepover at South Beach. 

Photo Latitude / Andy
© 2017 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

With the San Francisco Giants scheduled to play their first official game of the 2015 season tonight — and their home opener a week from today — we're reminded about an item that's been on our must-do list for far too long: Buy tickets for a night game and reserve an overnight slip at South Beach Harbor. 

The idea, of course, is to gather a group of baseball-lovin' friends, go out for a daysail around the Central Bay, then pull into a transient slip at South Beach Harbor a couple of hours before game time, thus allowing time for an onboard, pregame 'tailgate party'. After taking in the game, rather than making the long drive home through traffic, we'll simply head back to the boat and sleep over, with the promise of another fine daysail the next day to bring the boat back home.


Carolyn and Lynn, two frequent crew aboard Latitude's big cat Profligate, are also rabid Giants fans. 

© 2017 John Ringseis

Cool plan, right? The staff at South Beach Harbor tells us that they maintain 20 transient slips for visitors, plus a long side-tie guest dock, and reservations can be made up to two months in advance. The overnight price is $1.25 per foot for boats up to 70 feet (i.e. $50 for a 40-footer). So we suggest you peruse the schedule, and put your own plan into action. Perhaps we'll see you there. (Go Giants!)


The Giants' AT&T Park is renowned as one of the best places in the country to catch a game. Boaters of all types — even amphibious cars — join the fun at McCovey Cove.

© 2017 Lynn Ringseis

- latitude / andy

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Ad: Oakland Yacht Club

April 6, 2015 – Alameda, CA

Oakland Yacht Club

© 2017 Oakland Yacht Club / www.oaklandyachtclub.net

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Does This Transom Make My Ass Look Fat?

April 6, 2015 – The World of Newer Sailboats


We've seen wider beams on boats in recent years, but just under 15 feet on a 45-footer? 

Photo Latitude / Richard
© 2017 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

The biggest change in boat design in the last 40 years? We think it’s how much bigger the usable space has become, both on the inside and outside of monohulls.

When we were moored behind this Moorings 45.3 sloop, we were simply gobsmacked at how far her 14.7-ft beam was carried aft. Like to the transom! The result is that the cockpit was simply enormous. Ideal for sailors with catamaran cockpit size envy.

And there is more to it than that, as the bimini is also beam-to-beam.
For comparison with an older boat, check out the boat on the distant left in the photo. She’s an Amel Maramu 52. A fine boat, with a skinny butt — at least compared to some of today’s sailboats. 

- latitude / richard

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