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Transpac Row Fills Up

July 17, 2017 – Honolulu, HI

Buona Sera Finishes the Transpac
(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

Edward Marez's Santa Cruz-based SC70 Buona Sera crossed the Diamond Head finish line of the Transpac on Saturday evening.

© 2018 Betsy Crowfoot / Ultimate Sailing

With the racers arriving in waves over the weekend, Transpac Row at the Ala Wai Yacht Harbor in Honolulu is filling out nicely. Regardless of the time of day or night that they arrive, and regardless of their position in the fleet, sailors making landfall are given the full aloha treatment, with tiki torches, leis, mai tais and pu pus, when they are greeted by family, friends and dozens of volunteers.

Medicine Man crew

Decked out in aloha shirts and leis, the crew of Bob Lane and Lisa Meier's Long Beach-based Andrews 63 Medicine Man celebrates their arrival in Honolulu with mai tais served in fresh pineapples.

© 2018 Todd Rasmussen

Bill Lee and crew on the 1977 Lee 68 Merlin finished on Friday. Their elapsed time of 8 days, 2 hours, 34 minutes, 9 seconds didn't set any new records, but it did beat the record they set in 1977 which stood for 20 years. They beat Roy Disney's Andrews 68 Pyewacket to the finish, but they owe Pyewacket time and corrected out behind the newer (1998) boat. "We had no major failures or breakdowns," reports Bill. "This boat has had seven keel changes, four mast changes, deck layout changes and countless sails through its life. Right now it is set up nicely. She sails better, easier and faster than the original boat — so much so it's really a different boat and a pleasure to sail.”

Merlin approaches the finish

With the crew already sporting their aloha shirts, Merlin finishes her 40-year-anniversary Transpac.

© 2018 Sharon Green / Ultimate Sailing

Four protests are pending, and seven entries remain on the race course as of this morning. See We'll have full coverage in the August issue of Latitude 38.

- latitude / chris

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Classy Deadline the 15th

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Boat Caught in Dramatic Capsize Identified

July 17, 2017 – San Francisco, CA

You might have seen the footage on the news, and you might have heard the boat incorrectly called a catamaran. But the Andrew Mulligan — which swamped and sank just below the surface of San Francisco Bay on June 21 — is a classic Master Mariners winner.

"It's a 21-ft no-mans-land double-ended gaff ketch," said Kit Stycket, who used to own the Mulligan with her husband, Steve Canright. "It's won the Master Mariners in the gaff three class. We got second once, and won in 2009 and 2010. The boat has been sailed to Stockton and back on various 'gunkhole' cruises with the NPS and the Alma, all on her own power and sail."

Stycket said that the Mulligan is a tricky boat to sail, and like all wooden boats, has several quirks and is temperature- and weather-sensitive. "When you don't sail a wooden boat for a long time, and when you put the rail down, some water comes in and you have to bail," Stycket said, adding that she and her husband hadn't had the Mulligan in the water for three or four years before they sold it. 

While Stycket hasn't been in touch with the crew following the capsize, she suspects that the damage was likely minimal. "That boat floats; it's wooden. The only thing is the engine was underwater for 24 hours."

We don't want to be backseat sailors, but we'll repeat one critique echoed by everyone familiar with this story. Wear. Your. Life jacket. "It's not a reflection on your sailing ability if you wear a life jacket, it just means you respect the Bay. Because it can be dangerous," Stycket said.

And one more friendly critique to our journalist brethren: It's not a catamaran.  

- latitude / timmy

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Ad: Save the Waters You Love

July 17, 2017 – California

© 2018 Division of Boating and Waterways /

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So Fast, So Short

July 17, 2017 – The Lizard, UK

If you thought that Francis Joyon's time for crossing the North Atlantic solo from New York to the UK was fast, wait until you hear this.

Joyon topped his own record last week, covering the 3,039-mile course in his 104-ft maxi-trimaran IDEC Sport in 5 days, 2 hours, 7 minutes. But, over the weekend, rival French sailor Thomas Coville, 49, eclipsed Joyon's short-lived benchmark, setting a new bar below the five-day mark. Coville's 102-ft Sodebo Ultim' sailed out past the Ambrose Light in New York Harbor on the morning of Tuesday, July 11, and passed the Lizard Light, the southernmost point in mainland Cornwall, on Saturday evening. Pending ratification, the new time to beat is 4 days, 11 hours 10 minutes, 23 seconds.

Thomas Coville aboard Sodebo

The sign reads "Atlantique Nord Solo 4 Jours 11 Heures 10 Minutes Thomas Coville."

© 2018 Eloi Stichelbaut

Both Coville and Joyon were delivering their trimarans back to Europe from The Bridge race to New York. Hey, you gotta get the boat back anyway — might as well set a record while you're at it.

Coville also holds the record for the fastest solo circumnavigation of just 49 days, set last December.

- latitude / chris

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A Guide for the First Time

July 17, 2017 – South of the Border

A majority of the 114 boats already signed up for the the 24th Baja Ha-Ha will be making the trip for the first time. As always, it's nice to have some wisdom from those who have gone before.

Girls reading First Timer's Guide

Don't sail south without a First Timer's Guide. Print copies are mailed out free to Baja Ha-Ha entries, and a free digital version is online for all to enjoy.  

Photo Latitude / John
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

In June, Latitude 38 released the annual update of the First Timer's Guide to Mexico to help anyone who's planning to sail south for the first time. This is not a harbor cruising guide, but a brief outline of some of the key planning suggestions, paperwork needed and other advice to help cruisers ease into mañanaland with a minimum of hassles. More than 3,000 boats have gone on the Baja Ha-Ha before, so there's no reason not to take a few of their lessons with you.

While the First Timer's Guide has some great advice, if you're in the Bay Area on Wednesday, September 6, you'll want to be at Spaulding Marine Center in Sausalito for the Mexico Cruising Seminar given by Dick Markie of Paradise Village Marina and Geronimo Cevallos of Marina El Cid. Find a guest slip, anchor out in Richardson Bay, or drive in for the afternoon seminar and evening Crew List Party.

Spaulding Boatworks building

Meet fellow first-timers and new crew and connect with Bay and southbound sailors at Spaulding in Sausalito. 

© 2018 Spaulding Marine Center

Spaulding Marine Center is a Bay Area treasure of maritime history, a nonprofit education center, working boatyard and event center for sailors within easy reach of the City or East Bay. Have a look at the First Timer's Guide and then come connect in person at the Crew List Party.

- latitude / john

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