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May 2, 2018

A Study, Plan and Resolution at Clipper Cove

What’s the difference between agreeing to a study and agreeing to a plan? That was at the core of Monday’s heated meeting for the Land Use and Transportation Committee of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. The continuing drama of Treasure Island’s Clipper Cove pits a proposed expanded marina against a haven for youth sailing, paddlers, raft-ups and nature lovers. The agenda included a resolution affirming support for the latter, which the Committee unanimously approved, and which calls for environmental protection, public recreation and youth education at Clipper Cove. Supervisor Jane Kim stressed that the resolution wasn’t a mandate to curtail the marina development, but puts a series of principles in place.

Clipper Cove as seen during Treasure Island Sailing Center’s opening day a week and a half ago. One of the Cove’s most valuable resources is its relatively calm waters. Protected from big chop and the worst of the current, the Cove is a haven for small-boat sailing and all types of on-the-water recreation.

©2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Representing the other side, Jay Wallace from Treasure Island Enterprises outlined the long history of plans that have led to the current proposal to build a marina over a third of the cove, with 313 private slips ranging from 40 to 80 feet long. Treasure Island Development Authority has backed the current plan. Wallace made repeated mention of approvals the project had been granted in the past, which proved to be a point of contention.

Supervisor Kim repeatedly quizzed, corrected and chastised Wallace when he referred to plans for the marina as having been approved by the Board of Supervisors. Kim, who said her office has done extensive research on the history of the marina development proposals and actions by the Board of Supervisors, said the Board had approved a study of the marina — never a specific marina plan. "This Board has not weighed in on Clipper Cove," said Kim. "I can’t think of a time when we’ve thought of an EIR as a plan. There is a big difference between a study and a plan." Kim, whose district includes Treasure Island, said "I have to express my deep and utter dismay and disappointment with a letter that was submitted by the sponsor to the Board of Supervisors. It just boggles the mind and is a bit insulting to the intelligence of the members of this board."

Everyone who supports Clipper Cove, raise your hand!

©2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Some two dozen impassioned sailors, educators and environmentalists spoke up at the meeting in favor of the resolution, saying the larger marina footprint would impact high school and collegiate racing, cruisers anchoring in the Bay and Treasure Island Sailing Center’s popular youth education programs. Representing racers, cruisers, raft-up enthusiasts, youth sailing coaches, STEM leaders, proud parents, dragon boat paddlers and eelgrass lovers, they spoke in passionate terms about Clipper Cove’s unique sheltered waters.

It’s important to remember that Clipper Cove supports so much more than youth sailing. There are raft-up enthusiasts, kayakers, SUPers, eelgrass lovers, and one of the largest and fastest-growing segments of watersports out there: Dragon boaters.

©2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

The resolution was co-sponsored by Kim, supervisors Aaron Peskin, Sandra Lee Fewer and Jeff Sheehy. The supervisors say the resolution is a response to the recent proposal to expand the private marina located in Clipper Cove and reaffirms San Francisco’s commitment to public recreation, public education, environmental protection, preservation of public open space, and social equity.

The resolution goes before the full Board of Supervisors next week.

Locally Brewed, Delivered Fresh

The May issue of Latitude 38 was just delivered to a club or marine business near you. It offers a refreshing break from the daily blitz of fake news and online click-bait. When you crack open a fresh one you’ll regain the perspective you also get from your time on the water. 

Like sailing, you’ll find the May issue of Latitude 38 one of the best ways to relax and get away from it all.

©2018Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Every month we serve up a fresh edition of Latitude to bring you the latest in West Coast sailing news and keep you connected to the best of local sailing and sailors. In our robust May edition you’ll find features about the Doublehanded Farallones and Lightship races, a profile of Olympic hopeful Charlie Buckingham, visits to  West Coast boatbuilders and Bay Area boatyards, cruising the Sea of Cortez on a 22-ft boat, and Max Ebb in the galley.

If you normally pick up your free copy at the West Marine store in Oakland or on Buena Vista in Alameda, you’ll need to change course. West Marine has closed those two stores and opened a new one in Alameda’s South Shore Center. Other distributors can be found here. We welcome new distributors; if you have a marine business or waterfront location that would like to supply Latitudes to your customers, please let us know by email (or print this form and mail it in) and we’ll set you up.

You can also read them online, or subscribe to get your magazines in the mail.

Ta-Ta Question Answered

As we cracked open the pages of the just-delivered May issue of Latitude 38 we were concurrently reminded that the question posed in Sightings regarding the possibility of running the 7th annual SoCal Ta-Ta had already been answered. For, on the eve of delivery, we received the following email from the Grand PooBob:

The seventh annual (almost) SoCal Ta-Ta has been postponed until next year.

It’s with great regret that the Grand PooBob must advise everyone that there will not be a SoCal Ta-Ta this year, despite the fact that sufficient interest was expressed.

 Next dance? The Ta-Ta will be back in 2019.

© Latitude 38 Media, LLC

The SoCal Ta-Ta is a mini version of the Baja Ha-Ha, and takes the fleet from Santa Barbara to Santa Cruz Island for two nights, to Channel Islands Harbor for one night, to Paradise Cove for one night, then to Two Harbors, Catalina, for the final leg and ‘awards’ ceremony.

The Grand PooBob has hosted six Ta-Ta’s so far, and says it’s been some of the most pleasurable sailing that he’s ever enjoyed, particularly the legs from Santa Barbara to Santa Cruz Island and Paradise Cove to Catalina. And the socializing has been great, too.

The Ta-Ta was skipped in 2013 because of the America’s Cup on San Francisco Bay. This year it’s being postponed because Profligate, the mothership, is going to Peter Vargas’ ‘boat spa’ at the La Cruz Shipyard for a big cosmetic job. As with all big boat projects, they take longer than estimated, and when it’s done the catamaran would still have to Bash 1,250 miles north. The uncertainty is too great to schedule the event.

While the Grand PooBob has decided to postpone the Ta-Ta until 2019, rest assured that he is committed to another SoCal Ta-Ta then. It will be the Lucky Seventh.

Thank you for understanding.

British Challenge for the America’s Cup

A computer mock-up of what a new foiling AC75 class monohull with INEOS Team GB livery should look like when it hits the water.

© 2018 INEOS Team GB

Sir Ben Ainslie’s British campaign for the 36th America’s Cup got a much-needed shot in the arm last week when British petrochemical giant INEOS was announced as the team’s sole new sponsor. With the commitment to more than $150 million in funding toward the next America’s Cup, Ainslie has put forth an ambitious two-boat campaign that hopes to return the America’s Cup to the UK for the first time since the Brits lost it in the inaugural edition in 1851. The syndicate has been fully restructured under its new sponsor and is now known as INEOS Team GB.

Ben Ainslie will no longer be seen sporting Land Rover BAR gear, as seen in this America’s Cup 35 PR photo. "We are extremely disappointed having worked tirelessly to support Ben and the entire team … It is a great blow to us all that our partnership will not continue," Land Rover said in a statement shortly after INEOS Team GB’s announcement.

© Land Rover BAR

In addition to the new fully funded British effort, three other teams are confirmed for AC 36, to be sailed in 75-ft foiling monohulls. Emirates Team New Zealand is the defender, while Luna Rossa Challenge (Italy) is the official challenger. Also jumping into the fray is a new syndicate from the New York Yacht Club — American Magic — which will be skippered by Terry Hutchinson and helmed by Kiwi Dean Barker.

Many American sailing fans, including this writer, have expressed disappointment with the selection of a Kiwi to drive the American boat in the next America’s Cup. To that effect, there is a serious effort by a group of professional sailors, industry leaders and financial backers who are working to put together an all-American challenge for the 2021 America’s Cup. Currently skippered by match-racing wünderkind Taylor Canfield, the team got a needed boost in momentum when their core group defeated American Magic and its Kiwi skipper Dean Barker 3-1 in the prestigious Congressional Cup sailed off Long Beach just over a week ago.

Taylor Canfield and his Team US One are all smiles after winning the Congressional Cup on April 18-22. They beat NYYC’s American Magic team and Dean Barker by a score of 3-1 in the finals.

© 2018 Bronny Daniels / Joysailing

We’ll have periodic updates during the lead-up to America’s Cup 36. Also see

We now bring you photos from Saturday’s downwind leg of the Great Vallejo Race, as seen from a healthy distance aboard a 24-ft cruising boat under sail trying to get as close to the action as possible without getting in the way. 
They’re off! Again. The 11 boats in the current Clipper Around the World Race, the most accessible circumnavigation race to the average sailor, started off Seattle yesterday under partly cloudy skies and light winds.
C420s raced in the Elvstrom Zellerbach Regatta out of StFYC over the weekend.