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The Doo Dah and the Ding-a-Ling Club

June 15, 2016 – Somewhere near the San Joaquin River

The dateline above is intentionally vague. For one thing, this story was filed from nowhere near an actual municipality. For another thing, our sources have requested that the exact location of the Ding-a-Ling Club remain mysterious to avoid the inevitable deluge of sightseers that would overwhelm the meager facility.

Maggie Mae
(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

Moore 24s and Express 27s sailing in the Delta Ditch Run pass the Alameda-based Delta Doo Dah entry Maggie Mae, a Columbia 26 owned by Brian and Danielle Brandon.

Photo Latitude / Chris
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

This little tale begins with several Delta Doo Dah boats sailing inland from Richmond to Stockton Sailing Club on June 4 with the Delta Ditch Run. Among the entries in the cruising division was the Catalina 320 Great Expectations. In charter service at Modern Sailing in Sausalito, the pretty sailboat is owned by Brian and Lisa Forster and Giff Boyce-Smith. They report that they used their cruising-division motoring allowance three times during the race: in San Pablo Bay when the wind died, after Antioch at False River (the leg often referred to as the "white sail reach") and through the section known as the S curves nearish to Isleton.

Giff, Lisa and Brian with flags

Giff Boyce-Smith and Lisa and Brian Forster of Great Expectations. Brian sailed his Newport 30 No Agenda in the second Doo Dah, as evidenced by the 'Deux' burgee.

Photo Latitude / Chris
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

The day after the Ditch Run, Great Expectations traveled downriver to the Ding-a-Ling Club, a destination they had visited the previous October. "We put in our application for membership," said Boyce-Smith. "It's still being considered." 

Ding-a-Ling dock

Arriving at the Ding-a-Ling Club. 

Photo Courtesy Great Expectations
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

view from land

The Ding-a-Ling Club is hidden behind the hydrangea bush.

Photo Courtesy Great Expectations
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Giff and security guard

"The security guard says he wants a raise, and please don't give away his location," said Giff.

Photo Courtesy Great Expectations
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

On Tuesday afternoon, the Delta breezes switched on, and Great Expectations headed to the guest dock at Spindrift Marina on the San Joaquin. Spindrift has a general store, restaurant and bar, making it a welcome change after a couple of days away from civilization. Since the Catalina is a charter boat, it would have to return to Sausalito in time for the weekend.

Great Expectations

On their way to Owl Harbor, the crew of the Delta Doo Dah boat Stink Eye spotted Great Expectations at the Spindrift Marina guest dock. Later, both crews watched the Cavaliers trounce the Warriors from the comfort of Spindrift's bar.

Photo Latitude / Chris
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Other Delta Doo Dah sailors are looking forward to this weekend's Summer Sailstice events. Owl Harbor will host a BBQ for official entries and their own tenants on Saturday evening. On Sunday, a flotilla will sail to Little Venice Island for an 8-Ball tournament (this is Delta Doo Dah 8 after all). For details or free registration, see

Sunset at Owl Harbor

A peaceful but stunning sunset, as viewed from the sailboat-friendly docks at Owl Harbor.

Photo Latitude / Chris
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

- latitude / chris

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Fall Crew List Party

Classy Deadline the 15th

See the current magazine here

See the current magazine here.

Locomotion Damaged, Abandoned Offshore

June 15, 2016 – San Diego, CA

Delivery crew Lyn Silva and two others aboard the Andrews 45 Locomotion had to be rescued by a Coast Guard helicopter Monday night, while only 150 miles from completing their delivery form Hawaii to San Diego.

Nicknamed, Loco, the speedy Andrews 45 struts her stuff in Hawaiian waters.

Photo Courtesy Jeff Davis
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Considered to be one of Hawaii's top race boats, Locomotion was recently sold, and her new owner was to have taken possession upon arrival in California. According to former owner Jeff Davis, "Loco likely struck something submerged with the rudder causing structural damage and an uncontrollable leak." The crew called for rescue when their pumps could no longer keep up with the inflow of water.

When alerted by the broker involved with the sale, Coast Guard Sector San Diego dispatched a MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew and the cutter Narwhal, in addition to an HC-130 Hercules aircraft out of Air Station Sacramento, which provided additional support. After her crew was hoisted to safety, Locomotion was left adrift, and will presumably sink eventually, but there's no telling when that will happen.

Meanwhile, this incident will be added to a growing list of vessels that have struck unidentified objects while crossing to or from the Hawaiian Islands — a troubling thought given that nearly 100 race boats will soon be making that passage during the Pac Cup and Singlehanded TransPac.

- latitude / andy

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Ad: Race Clinic at Modern Sailing

June 15, 2016 – Sausalito, CA

© 2018 Modern Sailing School & Club /

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A Green Crossing of the Pacific

June 15, 2016 – West Coast to New Zealand

Ramirez, who also did the 2006 Ha-Ha aboard the Flicka 20 Dulcinea, holds up a huge coconut crab on Mystic in the South Pacific.

Photo Courtesy Mystic
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Have you cruised across the Pacific — West Coast to New Zealand — without using any fuel? Or do you know anybody who has?

While doing some research for a response to a letter that will appear in the July Latitude, we came across a letter in which Randy Ramirez of Stockton and Jenny Haldiman reported sailing their Mariah 31 Mystic to New Zealand in 2011, during which time they only used 12 gallons of fuel. But we seem to remember that one couple sailed their boat across using no diesel fuel at all.

Now that we think of it, Webb Chiles did it with his Moore 24 Gannet and probably some of his other boats. But anybody else? Oh yeah, Lin and Larry Pardey with their boats. Anybody else? Email us here.

- latitude / richard

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Classified Deadline Today, 5 p.m.

June 15, 2016 – Mill Valley, CA

© 2018 Latitude 38 /

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