July 6, 4:45 pm PDT - Pacific Ocean
Singlehanded TransPac competitor David Bennett, sailing the Hobie 33 'Space Cowboy' out of Brickyard Cove, was rescued from his liferaft 380 miles northwest of Hawaii this afternoon by the U.S. Navy vessel 'Ingram'. SSS Race Committee officials on Kauai report Bennett as being "safe and sound". The circumstances that prompted Bennett to abandon his vessel, which was apparently sighted floating in good condition some five miles away, are not clear. Bennett had been having rigging and autopilot problems, and like all of the competitors was suffering from fatigue and lack of sleep. The Navy vessel is headed to Washington.
Anna Stockel of the Santa Cruz 50 'Sundowner' crossed the finish line first this afternoon to become the first woman to take line honors in the Singlehanded TransPac. Her exact time is not known. Chuck Beazell in the Hunter 54 'Joe' was expected to cross the finish line several hours later. More on the Singlehanded TransPac in tomorrow's 'Lectronic Latitude.
July 6 - Marion, South Carolina
In the '60s, Southern California was Ground Zero for the building
of fiberglass production sailboats. No fewer than 20 builders
were located within a small radius of Costa Mesa - names like
Columbia, Cal, Coronado, Islander, Ericson, Yankee, Westsail,
and DownEast to name just a few. Most of these had disappeared
by the end of the '70s.
In the mid-'80s, the French - never known for being business whizzes - decided that for some reason they could make a go of boat building in the United States. And the accompanying photograph - of the 3,500th sailboat Beneteau has built in Marion, South Carolina - proves they were right. In addition to launching their 3,500th boat, the company unveiled plans to double their production capability.
Photo Courtesy Beneteau USA
July 6 - Pacific Ocean
Today's surface weather chart shows great Trades for both the Singlehanded TransPac and the Vic-Maui fleets to finish their races.
Click here to see enlarged graphic.
University of Hawaii Meteorology Graphic
It's 0900 and it's gusting to 23 knots at Pt. Arguello. It's still July.
Check it out at: http://www.mpc.ncep.noaa.gov/RSSA/PacRegSSA.html.
Kirogi is fading off Japan; everywhere else is quiet.
July 6 - Cyberspace and the Pacific Ocean
Who is out making passages in the Pacific and what kind of weather are they having? Check out YOTREPS - yacht reports - at http://www.bitwrangler.com/yotreps/
July 6 - North San Francisco Bay
Twenty boats celebrated Independence Day in one of the few races available on the Fourth: Tiburon Yacht Club's Brothers & Sisters Regatta. You don't have to be a brother or sister to race, just take the Brother and Sister Islands to port. The fleet enjoyed warm, sunny skies and plenty of wind. The breeze really kicked up between 3:00 and 4:00 pm (as usual) when the boats were finishing. One racer reported a top wind speed reading of 29.5 knots.
Top finishers in the Spinnaker Division were: 1) 'Jarlen', 2) 'Hooligan', 3) 'Joy Ride'. Top finishers in the Non-Spinnaker Division were: 1) 'Frisky', 2) 'Don Wan', 3) 'Risky'. You can visit Tiburon YC at http://tyc.org/.
Bob Bloom's J/35 'Jarlen' rounds the weather mark. She stayed in front for the entire race to get the gun and a first place finish.
The Newport 30 MkII 'Ruckus', owned by Paul Von Wiedenfield of Richmond YC, passes the Brothers lighthouse.
July 6 - Pacific Ocean
James McDowell's SC 70 from the Lahaina YC covered another 340 miles yesterday leaving her only 340 miles to what's going to be a mai tai finish for the home boy in Lahaina. 'Grand Illusion' appears to be on her way to first in her class, first in fleet, and a new record. Makes you wonder what all the SC 70s are doing on the Great Lakes. For details, visit http://www.vicmaui.org.
It's been shaping up for a great first to finish battle between
Anna Stockel on the Santa Cruz 50 'Sundowner' from Santa Cruz
and Chuck Beazell on the Hunter 54 'Joe' from Alameda. If Stockel
wins, it will be yet another victory in what's so far been the
best year ever for women racers. In any event, both boats should
cross the finish line off Hanalei Bay, Kauai, today. Our man John
Riise is on the scene so we'll have details in tomorrow's 'Lectronic
For details, visit: www.sfbaysss.org.
Chuck Beazell, 'Joe', Hunter 54
Boat: 'Joe' Hunter 54 (1982)
'Joe' starting the SSS TransPac
Navigation: Four GPSs (two fixed, two handheld), all Garmin.
Steering: "It depends on how well my new autopilot (AutoNav
below-deck hydraulic) works. If it can steer with the spinnaker,
I'll let it steer. If it can't, I'll steer as much as I can."
(Navico below-deck autopilot backup. )
Food: "Yes, I'll take food. I'll tell you what I bought when I leave the store. I don't understand all the jokes about Dinty Moore - I'm sure I'll have many cans aboard."
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