Photo of the Day
January 15 - ???
What the . . . ?
Photo Christopher Miller
January 15 - Atlantic Ocean
If there was a favorite in The Race, it was Steve Fossett
and 'PlayStation'. He had the most money, she'd been sailing
the longest, and she was the biggest boat. Unfortunately, she
fell victim to a critical system - the sails - that weren't up
to the job, and as a result has dropped out. Here's the story:
On the bridge of 'Club Med', a calm night
Photo J.Caraës/Club Med
On PlayStation's boom, repairing the mainsail
Photo Courtesy PlayStation
Sail repair aboard Innovations Explorer
Photo Courtesy Innovations Explorer
Graphic Courtesy Team Adventure
"In moderate airs he ('Team Adventure') is faster than
us. We wouldn't be surprised to find that he has a small reacher/genniker
on board. We built one but we didn't like it and so we didn't
bring it. For the light airs we built a Code Zero sail from North
3DL which we are really happy with. This sail is the main reason
we pulled forwards on 'Team Adventure' since the wind has dropped.
As in all major international regattas sails are playing a really
important part. If we had had a Whitbread-type stopover in Cape
Town we'd probably change a whole load of fittings on board to
make them stronger. The crew have done a really good job with
spare parts. They haven't brought a lot, but they manage to bring
something out from down below that will do the job just fine
every time we have a breakage. Being at sea makes you resourceful."
1. Club Med dtf 19,007
Note: 'PlayStation' is still officially racing until they reach land and ask for assistance. Her position will be included in the official standings until then.
January 15 - Catamaran Land
When we built 'Profligate', we had Gino Morrelli - half of Morrelli and Melvin which designed 'PlayStation' - do some consulting. Gino's advice on daggerboards: "You don't want them on cruising boats, because it's not a matter of whether or not they're going to break, but when they're going to break." We went with daggerboards anyway. You get better pointing ability and less drag, but the daggerboards are a complication that can, as 'PlayStation' discovered, become a liability.
The Money Guys from the Pacific Northwest
January 15 - St. Barts
In the January 11 'Lectronic,
we asked readers to guess the identities of the two moneybags
brothers from the Pacific Northwest who were in St. Barts over
New Year's with their mighty megayachts - and who the two even
bigger moneybags were on yet another yacht in St. Barts. On January 12, we got as far as the
brothers being from the MacCaw clan of Seattle, but didn't know
who belonged to which boat. Dick Enersen of San Francisco says
he knows for sure.
Hangin' with the big boys in St. Barts
The two other guys who were in St. Barts over the holidays?
Microsoft co-founders Bill Gates and Paul Allen, who were aboard
Allen's 199-ft motoryacht 'Meduse'. If we're not mistaken, they
were Med-tied next to Jennifer Lopez and Puff Daddy, which would
make sense, because Allen is a music freak with a state-of-the-art
recording studio in the boat.
January 15 - Mexican Ports
The new year brought an unpleasant surprise to cruisers in Mexico - without warning they are being charged about $20 each time they check in and out of a port - and double that on weekends and holidays. Previously, it was free. Based on our cruising experience, such fees and/or cruising permits aren't unusual, but the amount of those imposed in Mexico seems rather extreme. We'll be checking on details.
Darwin to Bali Instead?
January 15 - Indonesia
Until violence started to take its toll in Indonesia, one of the most popular cruising rallies in the world was from from Darwin, Australia, to Ambon, Indonesia. In fact, quite a few West Coast cruisers have participated. But the event had to be canceled last year as rioting swept over Ambon and much of Indonesia. Indonesian officials, however, don't want the event to die, so they have asked that race officials create a Darwin to Bali rally. Bali as yet hasn't suffered from violence. For details, visit www.darwinambon.octa4.com.au/darwin-ambon/
The start of the 1998 Darwin to Ambon rally
Photo Courtesy Darwin Ambon Yacht Race
January 15 - Ensenada, Baja California
Jens Kolbowski - who cruised Mexico in the '70s aboard the Cascade 42 'Radiant', and now at age 75 is running a Web site that promotes Mexico - reports that a new cruise port and 200-berth marina is to open in Ensenada within the next few months. It will surely be open for the Newport to Ensenada Race. Reservations for slips are being taken now. Ensenada is also starting to form its own yacht club, the Club Nautico de Ensenada. The first commodore will be Nico Sad, owner of the famous San Nicolas Resort Hotel in Ensenada. The vice commodore will be Julio de A'Costa, a racer from Mexico City. For full information, visit: http://Club-Nautico.Ensenada.net.mx.
January 15 - 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 www.bitwrangler.com/yotreps/
January 15 - Pacific Ocean
To see what the winds are like on the Bay and just outside the Gate right now, check out http://sfports.wr.usgs.gov/wind/.
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.: www.ndbc.noaa.gov/stuff/southwest/swstmap.shtml.
You can view the University of Hawaii Department of Meteorology satellite picture by clicking here.
Check out the Pacific Ocean sea states at: http://www.mpc.ncep.noaa.gov/RSSA/PacRegSSA.html.
For another view, see http://www.oceanweather.com/data/global.html.
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