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Photos of the Day

June 7 - Point Richmond

Today's Photos of the Day are of the world's largest and fastest racing yacht, Mari-Cha IV, which arrived at the KKMI yard in Point Richmond late last week after her delivery from Antigua. Thanks to the foreshortening of a telephoto lens, she doesn't look that long in this photo, but she's a 140-ft all-carbon modern schooner. It's unclear if she'll be doing any sailing on the Bay prior to the start of her assault on the West Marine Pacific Cup record in early July.

Photos Latitude/Richard

One of the cool things about Mari-Cha is her silver paint job. We don't know if it was planned, but as she moves through the water, glimmering waves flow down her hull. We've never seen anything like it, but it's really cool.

Paul Kaplan of KKMI notes that part of their yard is a public shore, so everyone is welcome to come and have a gander at the great schooner. KKMI is located on 530 West Cutting Blvd in Point Richmond, and is easily seen from the freeway. There's plenty of parking. Instead of entering through the busy boatyard office, follow the signs to the gate on the left (when facing the building). You'll be able to see Mari-Cha's black masts from a mile away.

For more details on Mari-Cha, see the feature in this month's edition of Latitude 38.

Delta Ditch Run

June 7 - Stockton

The 14th annual Delta Ditch Run, co-hosted by Stockton SC and Richmond YC on Saturday, was once again about as much fun as you can cram into a day of sailing. The weather for the 67.5-mile run up the river was perfect, featuring just enough wind to make it exciting at times. Bill Erkelens' D-Cat Adrenaline had a speedy ride, finishing the course first in 5:15:49, claiming multihulls honors in the process.

Adrenaline off Santa Clara Shoal, just down from Fisherman's Cut

Even more impressive was Don Jesberg's performance with his Melges 24 Ego. Sailing light with just Ricky Matthews and Steve Baumhoff, Jesberg led the monohull fleet wire-to-wire, finishing in 7:11:02. That topped the next boat in the 112-boat monohull racing fleet, Erik Urias' Wylie Wabbit Crash Test Bunny, by 15 minutes on corrected time. Even more incredible is Jesberg's record in the Ditch Run - this was the fifth year in row he has won it overall.

Ego, Don Jesberg's Melges 24

Class winners follow:
Heavy I - Yucca, 8-Meter, Hank Easom. (15 boats)
Heavy II - Marrakesh, Express 34, Craig Perez. (11 boats)
Heavy III - Happy Houka, Cal 27, Greg Goodman. (10 boats)
Heavy IV - Harmony, Columbia Challenger, Nancy Farnum. (7 boats)
Light I - Kodiak, Sierra 26, Kim Desenberg. (10 boats)
Light II - Hotfoot, Hotfoot 20, Jack Tatum. (6 boats)
Melges 24 - Ego, Don Jesberg. (14 boats)
Moore 24 - Pair-O-Chairs, Rowan Fennell. (19 boats)
Express 27 - Attitude Adjustment, Soren Hoy/Scott Easom. (13 boats)
Wylie Wabbit - Crash Test Bunny, Erik Urias. (10 boats)
Multihull I - Adrenaline, D-Cat, Bill Erkelens. (3 boats)
Multihull II - Wingit, F-27, Ray Wells. (9 boats)
Cruising - Ghost, 'Ticon', Bill Goldfoos. (8 boats)

Pair-O-Chairs, finishing in the long shadows of 7:36 pm, topped the biggest division, the Moore 24s.
Photos John Dukat

See www.stocktonsc.org for full results, and see the July issue of Latitude 38 for more of our coverage.

San Francisco Cup

June 7 - San Francisco Bay

St. Francis YC won the San Francisco Cup back from San Francisco YC this weekend, winning the prestigious match race series 3-0. The event, held in J/105s, was sailed in moderate winds on the Southampton Shoals course. Chris Perkins was the winning skipper, sailing his Good Timin' with brother Phil Perkins, John Collins, Steve Marsh, Nick Gibbens, and Will Sharron. The Saints led at every mark, with winning deltas of 32 seconds in the first race, 1:22 in the second, and 1:36 in Sunday's finale.

The winning StFYC team (plus one). Skipper Chris Perkins is holding the Cup.

Tim Russell helmed his Aquavit for San Francisco YC, with Bill Melbostad, Randy Smith, Greg 'Radar' Felton, Matt Frymier and Rob Schmidt pulling the strings. Though they lost on the water, SFYC 'won' the Saturday night party, which was highlighted, we're told, by an hysterical skit satirizing the event and both yacht clubs' board of directors. "No barb was left unturned," reports Jaren Leet, whose full account of the Cup can be found at www.stfyc.com.

Future competitors Teddy Russell (left) and Charlie Perkins discuss plans for the SF Cup circa 2034.
Photos Latitude/Rob

Stamm's Boat Loses Keel and Lays Down in TransAt

June 7 - Atlantic Ocean

It's been a wild Transat, the upwind singlehanded race from England to Boston, once known as the OSTAR, and which 'made' singlehanded ocean racing. The current excitement is that shortly after Jean Pierre Dick's Open 60 Virbac was rolled 360 degrees and dismasted after sailing under storm jib only in 50 knots of wind and 20-ft seas, Bernard Stamm's Open 60 Cheminées Poujoulat/Armor Lux, leading the monohulls, capsized after losing her bulb keel. This is the same boat that Stamm had once used to establish the monohull transatlantic sailing record. Prior to losing the keel, Stamm reported that at over 20 knots, his boat shook terribly and that he feared the mast would fall. Instead the keel fell off and the boat is now lying on her side with the sails up. Stamm has been rescued.

Although 34 of the 37 starters - including the 60-ft multihulls - are still racing, it's been very rough on the monohulls. Mike Golding reports that, "You stay below, only going on deck when you have to." It's not been easy on the trimaran sailors either. Thomas Coville of Sodebo, in second place, was knocked unconscious after hitting something at high speed. It's believe to have been a whale, and that one of the daggerboards or rudders may have temporarily been stuck in the mammal. Another trimaran skipper broke his main rudder after hitting a giant manta ray.

For the latest, visit www.thetransat.com.

Can We Get a Rudder for Disabled Sailors?

June 7 - San Francisco

"I'm not affiliated with BAADS (Bay Area Association of Disabled Sailors)," writes Scott Keck of the Emery Cove-based Ranger 23 Chaos, "but they need a new rudder for their Ranger 29. I think they can get one from Foss Foam for between $700 and $1,500, plus shipping and installation. And who knows, maybe some yard would even help with the installation. They can be reached at www.baads.org."

The Importance of Scenic Views

June 7 - California Coast

Last Friday we ran an opinion piece that objected to the California Coastal Commission's desire to prohibit the building of houses on the coast solely on the grounds that they would disturb a mariner's scenic enjoyment of the coast. Response ran about 10 to one against the Coastal Commission. We'll run some of the responses in the July Latitude, but can generally sum them up this way: nobody is in favor of paving the coast, nor are they especially in favor of more housing on the coast, but trying to ban such houses on the grounds that they interfere with mariner views is preposterous. Indeed, a number of respondents said they enjoyed the interesting structures along the coast.

Our biggest beef with the California Coastal Commission? Their opposition to the creation of new sea life habitats and their support of destroying some that currently exist.

Easom to Speak at Corinthian YC

"The Corinthian Yacht Club is proud to announce that Hank Easom, beloved Bay Area sailor extraordinaire, will be speaking at the Corinthian YC Thursday, June 10. Everyone is cordially invited to help celebrate Hank's 70th birthday, as he discusses the development of the racing scene from the '40s through the '70s.

"Hank started building boats in his teens while commuting by sailboat from Tiburon to Clipper Yacht Company in Sausalito. After a stint in the Coast Guard, he returned to Sausalito where he opened Easom Boatworks in 1955. He did repairs, built Clippers, Dashers, and many other boats - and sailed a lot. In fact, in 1972, he competed in the Olympic trials in the 29-foot Dragon class, where he came in second behind Don Cohan, who went on to earn a Bronze Medal at the 1972 Games. After that, he turned his attention to the Etchells, and began that class here on the Bay. And of course, Hank is known for his signature boat, the 8-Meter Yucca, which he campaigns relentlessly to this day.

Hank Easom
Photo Latitude/Rob

Yucca, on her way to winning Heavy-1 in Saturday's Delta Ditch Run
Photo Elaine Smith

"The doors will open at the club at 6 pm, and a buffet ($10/person) and a no-host bar will be available. Hank will start his talk around 7 pm, and we expect to wrap up around 9 pm. Admission is only $10 per person. We strongly encourage you to make reservations, as there will be limited seating. To make reservations, please call the club at (415) 435-4771 or visit our Web site at www.cyc.org/speakers and fill out the online reservations form."

In Latitude's estimation, Easom is one of the guys who embodies all that is good about sailing. Further, he came up with one of our favorite quotes: "The guy who pays the bills gets to drive the boat."

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