Photo of the Day

August 9 - Bristol, RI

Ronn Loewenthal sent us this photo of a monolithic artifact more than twice the size of the man holding it. What is it? Just one of the (carbon) spreaders, built by Hall Spars, for Hasso Plattner's newest Morning Glory, a Reichel/Pugh Baltic 147! The mast, once completed, will be 182 feet tall and will weigh 6,000 lbs.

Photo Hall Spars & Rigging

A Tale of Two Heroes

August 9 - Newport, RI

Bay Area sailor Bruce Schwab and the Wylie-designed Open 60 Ocean Planet are in Newport, RI, preparing for the start of the first leg of the Around Alone Race, which departs Newport next month. Bruce writes that, "I accost onlookers, inform them about the coming race, myself, and shove donation forms in their hands. The reactions vary from total disinterest to enthusiasm. Now and then I get lucky and some have helped out. All I can say is send money now or I won't make the start. Seriously, we need about $95,000 in the next few weeks. So, only 95 people need to send in $1,000!"

Bruce has been thrilled this week to have come close to a couple of his heroes. The first is Sir Peter Blake: "Right next to us is the huge SeaMaster, imposing not only for her size (110+ ft!) and awesome exploration capabilities, but also there is the almost palpable presence of the late Peter Blake. This man was such a legendary figure in the sailing world, and the boat so impressive, that we feel tiny and humbled being next to them.

SeaMaster dwarfs Ocean Planet at the Newport Shipyard.
Photo Bruce Schwab

The second is Bob Dylan. "Yes, Robert Zimmerman himself played yesterday at the Newport Folk festival, 37 years after he was virtually booed off the stage when he 'went electric.' Although it was long sold out when I arrived in Newport, I was DYING to see the show.

"Turns out that the stage for the festival is visible from the water, so HUNDREDS of boats jammed into the vicinity in a raucous scene of swimsuits, water balloons, and every kind of boat from lasers to ski boats, inflatables, surfboards(!), to priceless motor launches. I was lucky to grab a ride on a 37' high speed tender to a huge motor yacht whose crew I had met in the yard. We gingerly wiggled our way as close as possible through the crowd and after several tries managed to get the anchor to grab with minimal scope. I had brought my small 'boat guitar' and played a few tunes to earn my ride until Mr. Dylan and his band hit the stage.

"After returning to the yard, I called (team helper) Agnes and found she was aboard SeaMaster. We were luckily invited aboard by the skipper for dinner!  Aboard the boat I was in awe of the legacy left by Mr. Blake. After dinner I brought out my little boat guitar and played for the small audience of the skipper, mate, Agnes, and most meaningful to me, the ghost of Peter Blake."

Bruce Schwab
Photo Billy Black Courtesy

Since he began this project, Bruce has been prolific in his entertaining updates emailed to friends and supporters. (He signs off one of his recent newsletters with "Hangin' at the sailing bars and playing guitar for tips!") You can catch up with them at his Web site,, where you will also find a contribution form.

A New A-Cup Scandal

August 9 - Auckland, New Zealand

Jock Anderson of New Zealand's National Business Review reports that his publication was nearly a pawn in a "dirty tricks plot to sabotage Team New Zealand and Oracle BMW Racing America's Cup campaigns.

"Documents posted in Auckland and purporting to be from Oracle Racing rules
adviser Tom Ehman came to me at NBR. But in a dramatic telephone interview
from San Diego yesterday afternoon an angry and gravely concerned Mr. Ehman
emphatically denied sending any documents to NBR.

"When the covering note addressed to me and bearing his name on the bottom
was read to Mr. Ehman he expressed grave concern that Oracle BMW Racing and
NBR appeared to have been caught up in a dirty tricks bid to discredit Team
New Zealand. 'I did not send that note, nor did I send the documents. I know nothing about them,' Mr. Ehman assured me. Mr. Ehman declined to comment
further on the record except to say that legal action could follow.

"The computer-generated covering note under the logo Oracle Racing that
accompanied the documents read: 'Dear Jock, I understand your frustration on the TNZ financials, so I have sent a list of salaries. The information on the AC trust is very relevant as the New York Attorney General is investigating the misuse of funds by TNZ in the past at this moment. A call to the charities department would substantiate this. Regards, Tom Ehman.' "

The question is, if Oracle didn't send the note, then who did?

Oracle BMW Racing's official response to the news of this trick was issued by Joanna Ingley: "Oracle BMW Racing was surprised and appalled at the documents fraudulently attributed to one of their team members, and sent to a reporter of the New Zealand National Business Review yesterday, August 8.

"The documents were obviously a ploy by some individual or persons looking to tarnish the reputation of both Oracle BMW Racing and Team New Zealand. To falsify and forward fraudulent documents is an extremely serious matter, and Oracle BMW Racing have contacted the police and appropriate authorities to ask that they investigate this matter further.

"It was not until National Business reporter, Jock Anderson, contacted Oracle BMW Racing yesterday, that the team were made aware of the falsified correspondence that reportedly pertained to 2003 America's Cup Defenders Team New Zealand."

Never a dull moment at the America's Cup camps - and head offices.

EEB Mike Found Online

August 9 - La Paz, BCS

Mark Joiner of Ku'uipo writes, "In response to Carol Wellins' plea in yesterday's 'Lectronic, EEB Mike can be reached at - where else? -, which I emailed her. What makes his site noteworthy is that it has the most concentrated and thorough update on Baja weather I've ever seen, from pin-point accurate overlays to ocean temperatures to the GOES West satellite image, all updated automatically."

Carol herself writes to say thanks, she's all set, and she's gotten all the responses she needs.


August 9 - 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

Weather Updates

August 9 - Pacific Ocean

San Francisco Bay Weather

To see what the winds are like on the Bay and just outside the Gate right now, check out The National Weather Service site for San Francisco Bay is at

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 Winds and Pressure

The University of Hawaii Dept. of Meteorology page posts a daily map of the NE Pacific Ocean barometric pressure and winds.

Pacific Sea State

Check out the Pacific Ocean sea states at:
For views of sea states anywhere in the world, see

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