Photos of the Day

Maxi Cat Flies

November 29 - Cherbourg, France

A lot of sailors were skeptical that Cam Lewis' 'Team Adventure' maxi catamaran for December 31's The Race would ever be built, let alone sail. But as the photos here show, the events of recent days have proved them wrong. Despite the fact that the big cat has been on 'builder's trials', Lewis and crew have routinely been flying the weather hull, and even hit 39.9 knots - which to our knowledge is the fastest speed any of The Race challengers have claimed in public.

Team Adventure is also experimenting with a couple of possible uses for water ballast. The first is to put water in the weather hull to give the cat greater stability in certain situations. Another is to put weight aft to keep the bows from diving in fast conditions and steep seas. These ideas have been tried in several other cats with limited success. Maybe Lewis and his group will have better luck.

A week or so ago Lewis said he still needed $2 million to hit the starting line with 'Team Adventure'. No mention was made of it today, but we're sure he could still use financial assistance.

Check out their Web site at

Photos Team Adventure/Henri Thibault


ARC Update

November 29 - Atlantic Ocean
Here's the latest report on the 2,700-mile rally from Las Palmas in the Canary Islands to St. Lucia in the Eastern Caribbean:

"The fleet is very happy as the wind has picked up and all yachts are making good progress. The smaller yachts are catching up on the rest of the fleet after being caught with periods of no wind. Talk on the net today was of an unnamed yacht catching a massive marlin. We all look forward to seeing the tail and hearing the tale in St. Lucia. The stronger winds have caused an increase in breakages, with reports of blown sails, and the Finnish yacht 'Venla' has reported a broken shroud. Other ARC yachts are in their vicinity and will be checking with them as they continue to St. Lucia.

"John Burfitt, skipper of Challenge Business yacht 'Compaq', describes how they blew one of their sails, 'Winds were NE15 gusting to 30 under menacing black clouds, a big swell, and at times a confused sea added a challenge to helming. During Saturday a deep and developed squall approached; as the crew assembled to dowse the flanker, it blew in only 15 knots apparent. The crew began an immediate assessment of damage and since then all hands have been involved in a sewing extravaganza.' John continues, 'There have been complaints of sore fingers, but motivation to continue is provided by the thought of rivals "Logica" taking the lead.'

"In trade wind conditions, line squalls are frequently encountered. John gives us a vivid account of a tropical line squall as it passes over the boat, 'Sunday morning, early hours as dawn was ghosting a gloomy glow over the gray sky, yet another squall approached. In the quiet moments before it hit an eerie howling of wind in the distance could be heard. Hatches were secured and the on-watch stood by in the cockpit. Despite its menacing look, the squall reached only 25 knots, however it released a deluge of rain upon us, rinsing decks and crew clean. By Sunday afternoon the skies had cleared, as we put our oillies and clothing on the rail to dry. The light winds were now reducing our speed, but guiltily enjoyed by us all as we fell behind our rivals but got some rest.'

"Amongst the fleet leaders, 'Logica' reached the half-way point and second mate Ian decided to prepare a party dinner in the galley with temperatures soaring in the strong sunshine. Four hours later the feast was served. Strict dress code was in order, tie for the gentlemen and skirts for the ladies. Ian describes the scene at dinner, 'Jan took the floor with a bow-tie made out of a digestive box. Vanessa made a banner for the boom, which survived the evening squalls just! Who would've thought during our celebrations we were surfing down waves at 10 knots!'"

Enrique Boisser's Beneteau First 42 Canarias at the start

Before the squalls hit, the happy crew of the German Bavaria 50 Sonja captured this dorado.

Photos Courtesy World Cruising Club

For position reports, visit

Winds of Change Across Oahu

November 28 - Ala Wai Yacht Harbor, Honolulu

As we've mentioned in the past, the Ala Wai Yacht Harbor should be one of the great yacht harbors of the world, something it certainly isn't today. In addition to the harbor being poorly laid out and some slips being in extremely poor condition, it's as bleak and paved over a waterfront as anyone could imagine. Just check out the first photo. After years of exasperation, some berth holders decided to take matters into their own hands by bringing in some vegetation. This is probably illegal, but . . .

The winds of change are blowing across Oahu, however, as the ridiculously cheap berthing rates may soon go up dramatically to pay for the much needed improvements. For details, see the January Latitude 38.

Photo Latitude/Richard


November 29 - The Pacific Ocean and Cyberspace

Who is out making passages in the Pacific and what kind of weather are they having? Check out YOTREPS - 'yacht reports' - at


Raja Muda Regatta

November 29, Malaysia

Suppose you've done the West Marine Pacific Cup, Antigua Sailing Week, the ARC, and are looking for something new and exotic. In that case, you should have been at Port Klang, Malaysia, on November 17 for the start of the seven race Raja Muda Regatta 2000. Here's the story:

"The Raja Muda International Regatta evolved from the Malaysian Offshore Series which was established primarily to encourage local yachting, particularly racing, in the region. The MOS, which began in 1985, combined a harbor triangle with a 120 nm overnight race to White Rock and back around the One Fathom Bank lighthouse in the Straits of Malacca. The MOS ran for five years and laid the early foundations on which the Raja Muda Regatta was founded. The first Raja Muda Regatta was successfully run in 1990 and has since taken place annually with increasing popularity.

"The success of the regatta is also attributed to the continued support of our patron, HH Prince Idris Shah, the Raja Muda of Selangor, who graciously takes the time and opportunity from his busy schedule to participate in the regatta himself. An avid sailor with an active interest in regional sailing development, His Highness commissioned Garrard of London to hand craft the stunningly beautiful Raja Muda Challenge Trophy of silver and gilt together with smaller exact replicas for winners to keep as a testimony to yachting excellence.

"The Raja Muda International Regatta today is a world-renowned sailing event, attracting participants from the world over. Its distinctive feature is the remarkable night island-hopping passages coupled with competitive round-the-cans racing during the day. At offer is seven days of active racing, cruising, great parties onshore with ample breaks to enable participants to indulge in some sightseeing and to savor some of the charms, sights and sounds of Malaysia. It is also an established component in the region's racing calendar with the regatta organizers in close contact with the region's other major yachting events, namely Thailand's King's Cup, Singapore's Straits Regatta and the Philippines' President's Cup.

"The regatta - which is open to racing, cruising, classic and multihull boats - kicks off from the Royal Selangor Yacht Club's splendid premises at Port Klang with a testing overnight passage of 72 nm finishing off the Sembilan Islands and then proceeding to the Lumut International Yacht Club. The second overnight passage of 70 nm involving some very tactical racing ends in Penang.The last 71 nm passage to Langkawi is often the most dramatic with strong northeast monsoon winds providing excellent sailing conditions. Each overnight passage is a convenient distance to enable yachts to arrive at the finish line in the early hours of the morning. The greater part of the sailing is done at night to take advantage of the cooler air and strong land breeze and is especially challenging and tactical, demanding the best from both men and equipment.

"These coastal waters are among the region's safest with additional peace of mind provided by the Royal Malaysian Navy escort vessels. A total of four testing windward-leeward races for racing and cruising classes with two day passages for classic and multihull classes the following two days completes the regatta. The final awards ceremony is at the attractive Royal Langkawi Yacht Club."

We'll have a report and photos on this year's Raja Muda within the next couple of days.

Vendée Globe Update

November 29 - Atlantic Ocean

It continues to be a great year for women in the top offshore singlehanded events, as Frenchwoman Catherine Chabaud of 'Whirlpool' and Brit Ellen MacArthur with 'Kingfisher' hold the second and fifth spots in the Vendée Globe Singlehanded Around the World race. Chabaud is 164 miles behind the leader and last year's winner, Yves Parlier on 'Aquitaine Innovations', while MacArthur is 254 miles back. The Vendée Globe currently has 20 competitors. See

Whirlpool, the second place boat

Photo Gilles Martin-Raget

Weather Updates

November 29 - Pacific and Atlantic Oceans

Tropical Weather

The Atlantic/Caribbean region hurricane season is almost over, and it looks as though there will not be any more tropical storms or hurricanes.

San Francisco Bay Weather

To see what the winds are like on the Bay and just outside the Gate right now, check out

California Coast Weather

Looking for current as well as recent wind and sea readings from 17 buoys and stations between Pt. Arena and the Mexican border? Here's the place - which has further links to weather buoys and stations all over the U.S.:

Pacific Ocean Weather

You can view the University of Hawaii Department of Meteorology satellite picture by clicking here.

Pacific Sea State

Seas are normal in the Pacific. But you might check at:
For another view, see

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