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Just Imagine Lost at Sea

October 22 - Gulf of the Farallones

Photo Courtesy Tom and Lyn Camp

Just Imagine, the 50-ft cutter seen in this photo, is currently 'lost at sea'. Like us, you probably wonder how that can happen. Here's the story. Tom and Lyn Camp let the Shark Project folks on the Farallon Islands use their boat for research. So it was she'd been moored to the big southeast buoy from September 20 until October 9. It had been rough on the 9th, so the one woman staying aboard went to shore for awhile. While she was ashore, something attaching Just Imagine to the mooring failed, and the boat started drifting away. It was too rough for anyone to retrieve her, and the Coast Guard said it wasn't their business to do salvages. You would think the boat would be easy to find from a plane the next day, but it wasn't. It's now been two weeks, and nobody has reported seeing a trace of her. There are all kinds of theories where she might be, from up north to down near the Channel Islands, to wrecked on a beach or way out in the Pacific.

The Camps have owned Just Imagine for three years, and she is insured. We sure hope this doesn't end up as another instance of 'no good deed going unpunished'.

Cayard and Trinter Shine in Stars

October 22 - San Francisco

Paul Cayard and crew Phil Trinter won the St. Francis YC-hosted 2003 Keane Star NA's yesterday, sailing a chartered boat against a talented 40-boat fleet. Going into the sixth and final race, Cayard was tied with another local skipper, Howie Shiebler, setting up a winner-take-all situation. Shiebler led Cayard at the first windward mark, but then jibed out into the Bay for more pressure on the downwind leg. Cayard hugged the shore, gaining several hundred yards - more than enough to hold off Shiebler to the finish.

Star Stars Trinter (left) and Cayard
Photo Latitude/Rob

Cayard's 1,(6),4,1,4,2 scores earned him a 12-point victory over runner-up Freddy Loof and Shiebler, who ended up third. Cayard and Trinter are on a roll lately, and the NA win bodes well for their Olympic aspirations. But, as Cayard cautioned, "All these regattas don't really matter for going to Athens. It still all comes down to who does best at the Trials in Miami this March."

Check out www.stfyc.com for more.

1) Paul Cayard/Phil Trinter, San Francisco, 12 points; 2) Frederik Loof/Anders Ekstrom, Sweden, 20; 3) Howie Shiebler/Will Stout, San Francisco, 21; 4) Mark Reynolds/Magnus Liljedahl, San Diego, 28; 5) Eric Doyle/Rodrigo Meireles, San Diego, 30; 6) Flavio Marazzi/Enrico De Maria, Switzerland, 30; 7) Terry Hutchinson/Andrew Scott, Annapolis, 31; 8) George Szabo/Mark Strube, 34; 9) John MacCausland/Bard Nichol, Medford, NJ, 45; 10) Doug & Robert Schofield, Sagamore Beach, MA, 46. (40 boats; 6 races; 1 throwout)

The Heat Is On for the Ha-Ha

October 22 - San Diego

We don't put much stock in long range weather forecasts, but folks are calling for Sunday's Ha-Ha Kick-Off Party in San Diego to be held during a heat wave. Temperatures of 80 degrees and above are expected. The unusual heat is expected to continue for the start the next morning, which will make for good photographs from the Ha-Ha helicopter, and the next day or two. So don't skimp on suntan lotion.

Ken at Commander's Weather, official forecasters for the Ha-Ha, has other good news. The weather conditions that allow for the formation of hurricanes off southern Mexico seem to have dissipated for the year. While there is no certainty they won't return, it looks as though the season has changed. While there hasn't been a hurricane on the Ha-Ha path during Ha-Ha dates, the Ha-Ha folks always keep an eye out for out-of-season hurricanes, which are fortunately rare in Mexico.

Skill, Not Money - Although Both Are Important

October 22 - San Francisco

In the aftermath of 14-year-old Shark Kahn stunning the racing world by winning the prestigious Melges 24 Worlds on San Francisco Bay last week, some people have wondered if the win wasn't 'bought' by his father Philippe Kahn, who made major bucks in the software world and whose Pegasus Racing owns many boats. Kahn's competitors, who are some of the very best sailors in the world, say that wasn't the case at all and that Shark truly deserved the win. True, he couldn't have done it without his top crew, but none of the other top competitors could have done it without their great crew either. If Shark had one advantage, it was that he and his crew spent 90 days practicing on the water in preparation.

Samuel 'Shark' Kahn
Photo Latitude/Rob

Yankee Cup/Champion of Champions

October 22 - San Francisco Bay

The annual season-ending three-race Yankee Cup (HDA championship) and Champion of Champions (ODCA champs) took place on Saturday, October 18, on the Cityfront. Island YC fired the guns for 18 boats in the two groups, which started separately but sailed the same three courses - a short windward/leeward in a 5-7 knot westerly, a longer windward/leeward in 10-12 knots, and a triangle, windward/leeward in about 15 knots.

Three different HDA boats won races - Star Ranger, Shenanigans and Hoot. However, Steve Seal's ubiquitous WylieCat 30 Silkye was the most consistent boat, scoring a 2,4,2 record to win the Yankee Cup handily.

(foreground) and Silkye

Meanwhile, the smallest boat in the Champion of Champions - Mike Andrews' 2003 Santana 22 Bonito - topped that fleet with a 1,2,5 record.

For a complete report and results see the Racing Sheet the November issue of Latitude 38. Full results are available at www.yra.org.

(l to r) Yankee Cuppers Jeannette, Silkye and Shenanigans

Mintaka chases Bodacious and Hoot

Lelo Too's bowman at work

Bodacious led the way.

Photos Latitude/JR

Mirabella V Outside for the First Time

October 22 - Southampton, UK

The much-publicized Mirabella V, which at 247 feet will be the longest sloop in the world, and whose 295-ft carbon mast will be the tallest in the world, was shown to the press for the first time in England yesterday. Consider these telling statistics to get an idea of how big she is: The V-1 shroud, which runs from the first spreader to the deck, weighs one ton! The keel weighs 110 tons! As we mentioned before, her mast wouldn't make it under the Golden Gate Bridge by 40 feet. Her weekly charter fee will be - check your wallet - $350,000. Even so, owner Joe Vittoria figures they can do 20 weeks a year. As the former president of Avis Rent-A-Car, maybe he knows something we don't.

Graphic Courtesy www.mirabellayachts.com

The massive yacht is expected to undergo sail trials before the end of the year, and will presumably try to make it to the Caribbean for part of the winter season. Her playgrounds will be the Med in the summer - where there are no bridges - and the Caribbean in the winter.


October 22 - 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.

Weather Updates

October 22 - Pacific Ocean

San Francisco Bay Weather

Check out this guide to San Francisco Bay Navigational Aids: http://sfports.wr.usgs.gov/sfports.html.

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

The site for the Pacific Ocean sea states has moved to http://www.mpc.ncep.noaa.gov/shtml/PacRegSSA.shtml.
For views of sea states anywhere in the world, see http://www.oceanweather.com/data.

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