Photo of the Day
March 12 - San Francisco
Today's Photo of the Day is of the lovely Allison Mahan, a self-described San Francisco 'Marina Chick'. A Marina Chick is not somebody who hangs around the docks in San Francisco, but who lives an upscale post-college life based out of Chestnut Street in San Francisco's Marina District, and who is into clothes and all the rest of the Northern Californian good life.
Photo Courtesy Force Five
What do you think would happen if Allie, whose closest previous encounter with sailing had been parties at the St. Francis YC and brunch at Sam's in Tiburon, fell in love with a guy and they decided to buy a boat together and go cruising in the Caribbean? And not just regular cruising, but cruising the ascetic Pardey way. Find out in the April edition of Latitude 38.
Two Juicy Rumors of the Day
March 12 - Iran and San Francisco
1) Reports on Iran television that Osama
Yo Mama has been caught.
TransPac Rising Like a Phoenix
March 12 - Los Angeles
The biennial Los Angeles to Honolulu TransPac, one of the classic yacht races in the world, had its prime in the late '70s and early '80s with 80 entries in '79, followed by 74 entries, 66 entries, 64 entries, and 55 entries. The last two TransPacs were way down, with just 33 boats each time. The much newer West Marine Pacific Cup from San Francisco to Kauai had totally taken over, with more than double the participants.
When TransPac Commodore Brad Avery looked at prospects for this year's race, they were dim. All the 70s have gone to the Great Lakes, the TransPac 52 class is faltering, and there are big war and economic worries. Avery feared it might be a 19-boat TransPac.
Well, as of early March there were a mind-boggling 59 entries with more expected. Avery can't put his finger on the exact reasons, but he says that Jerry Montgomery and Bill Lee have played a big role, helping interested parties become actual entries. Avery says there also seems to be some 'I might not be able to do it next time so I'd better do it now', attitude, as well as some folks feeling this is a year to have fun in America as opposed to Europe - for obvious reasons.
One of the neat aspects of this year's TransPac will be the one-design fleet for Cal 40s, which will be celebrating their 40th anniversary. The most TransPac-y boat in history, 10 Cal 40s are already signed up, and everyone is waiting to see if Dennis Conner, who recently purchased one, will enter his against the likes of Stan Honey.
It's still possible to sign up for the TransPac. Contact Entries Chairman Bill Lee at (831) 464-4782.
Photo Sharon Green
The current entries are:
Division 2 (starts July 6)
Division 3 (starts July 4)
Division 4 (starts July 4)
Divisions to be determined
ALOHA DIVISION (starts July 1)
Aloha B/Cal 40
DOUBLEHANDED (start dates to be determined)
First a Big Fleet, Now an Entire Island
March 12 - British Columbia
As happy as volunteer TransPac Commodore Brad Avery has to be about the dramatic turnaround in that event, he's got even more to be smiling about. You see, Avery's real job is running the Orange Coast College's terrific School of Sailing and Seamanship in Newport Beach, one of the best around. It has to be entirely self-supporting, so it relies largely on donations. Today Avery announced that Henry Wheeler of Downey, who for many years raced a series of yachts named Aorangi, has donated his beautiful 36-acre island in British Columbia to the sailing program. Heavily-wooded Rabbit Island is 50 miles north of Vancouver, between Vancouver Island and the Canadian mainland, and is operated by the British Columbia Parks System.
More from Tim Wright and the Heineken in St. Martin
March 12 - St Martin/St. Maarten
Don't Believe Everything You Read, Parts One and Two
March 12 - Auckland, NZ
In Wednesday's 'Lectronic Latitude, we reported that the Canadian Globe and Mail, in Ian Brown's story on the America's Cup, reported that Larry Ellison paid $300,000 a month to berth his motoryacht Katana in Auckland. David Person wonders if this is a typo, noting that the Seattle Times said the berth fees there were "as much as $39,000 a month". To tell you the truth David, we don't know if it's correct, a typo, or an error. All we know is that's what was printed in the Globe and Mail. And having once sailed with a gentleman who spent something like $10 million decorating just the foyer of his Manhattan apartment, we're forever immune to sticker shock.
However, we do know that we clearly erred on Wednesday when we wrote that John Kostecki was new to the Star class. Ike Stephenson corrects us by noting that from '92-'94, Kostecki was 6th, 8th and 4th in the World Championships. These kind of errors crop up when the 'cruising editor' tries to play 'racing editor'. Our apologies.
March 12 - Salvador, Brazil
For a landlocked country, the Swiss are kicking ass on the ocean these days. First Alinghi, now Bernard Stamm of Bobst Group-Armor Lux has crossed the finish line first for the fourth straight time in the Around Alone Race, this time in the 7,880-mile leg from New Zealand to Brazil. And that included a stop in the Falkland Islands to fix his keel. Alas, he'll received a 48-hour penalty, which will drop him behind Thierry Dubois of Solidaires, who has always been a worthy adversary. Dubois must be tearing his French hair out nonetheless, as he had a good lead on Stamm up until the very end.
Bernard Stamm is greeted at the docks Brazilian-style.
A sudden gust just before the finish and Solidaires takes off.
Photos Mark Pepper/Marinepics Courtesy www.aroundalone.com
As has also normally been the case, Northern Californian Bruce Schwab is gamely hanging in, although in last place in Class 1. Southern Californian Brad van Liew, on the other hand, continues his total dominance of Class 2.
Once Blessed, Geronimo Now Cursed by the Weather Gods
March 12 - North Atlantic Ocean
Olivier de Kersauson and his maxi-tri Geronimo started the Jules Verne Around the World Race with fantastic sailing conditions to the equator and even down to the Southern Ocean. But from the Cape Horn up, and particularly north of the equator, the weather gods have been giving him the stink eye. It now looks almost certain he won't break Bruno Peyron's Jules Verne Record set with the maxi-cat Orange.
March 12 - The Pacific Ocean and Cyberspace
Who is out making passages in the Pacific and what kind of weather are they having? The YOTREPS daily yacht tracking page has moved to www.bitwrangler.com/psn.
March 12 - 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 http://sfports.wr.usgs.gov/wind.
The National Weather Service site for San Francisco Bay is at www.wrh.noaa.gov/Monterey.
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.: www.ndbc.noaa.gov/Maps/Southwest.shtml.
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