April 8, 2019

Lost Shaker of Salt: the Search Continues

Jimmy Buffett has the good dope.

When Jimmy was on my cat ‘ti Profligate yesterday in St. Barth and told me that the great Rhodes 73-ft centerboard yawl Escapade, a Caribbean legend from the 80s and 90s, was being completely rebuilt, I was pretty sure that he was mistaken. After all, when I’d seen her years ago, she seemed to be a lost cause in the KKMI yard in Richmond.

Jimmy Buffett, second from left, onboard ‘ti Profligate in St. Barth with Doña de Mallorca Spindler, far right.
© 2019 Richard Spindler

It turns out Jimmy did indeed have the good dope, as according to Kenny Keefe of KKMI, a nearby yard in Richmond is doing the complete rebuild. Fantastic!

Escapade had a brilliant career in the Great Lakes and setting records on the East Coast and the Caribbean — Google it — then allegedly got into the ‘import’ business for awhile.

Much later, she was owned by a Russian lawyer in the Bay Area. After doing a Cabo race, she slammed into a Coast Guard buoy near Pt. Conception while heading back to the Bay Area.

About the same time, the lawyer who owned her got into big trouble for massive financial shenanigans. Escapade dried out for years at the KKMI yard in Richmond, and was often written off for dead.

An unidentified photographer snapped this shot of Escapade looking pretty darn good in front of the Gate.
© 2019 Unknown

But like the rumors of Mark Twain’s death, apparently Escapade’s were a little premature.

Long live Jimmy B and Escapade, two spirits of the ‘old St. Barth’.

Craft of Unconvention, Part 2

On Friday, we told you about some unconventional vessels that have graced West Coast waters. Many of these are so-called backyard builds, labors of love that congeal in sheds, parking lots and the far-flung corners of boatyards.

But some craft of unconvention come from a deeper, more deliberate creativity and experience — and are conceived, designed and built by some of the sailing world’s greatest virtuosos. Take the Rosie G, the brainchild of Bay Area native (but longtime Maui resident) Barry Spanier.

“It’s our Antrim 42 happy cruiser with a ‘modern’ Chinese junk rig,” Spanier told us in an email last year. “I don’t know about her being a ‘demon upwind,’ but dry and stable and easy will be enough for us (71 and 68 at the moment). Currently we have a Westsail 42 (#24) and are finding some of the aspects — multi sail handling, six-step companionway ladder, stern cabin pass-through, diesel power — may be too ‘young’ as our cruising time goes by.”

The Rosie G is currently under construction at Berkeley Marine Center by none other than Cree Partridge.

An early rendering of the Rosie G, designed by Jim Antrim.
© 2019 Barry Spanier

“I did the original drawings for this boat in 1978 while living in Tahiti during a cruise on my self-built Atkin Ingrid called Seminole. Then shipwreck and life got in the way until a few years ago when I dredged up the ideas and was further inspired by the success of the Raison scow-bow in the Mini Transat. I went to my old friend Jim Antrim, and he took the bait — and here we are.”

Jim Antrim’s involvement is certainly not accidental. “If people have an unusual idea, I have a reputation for designing it,” Antrim told us in our West Coast Boatbuilders series last year.

A legendary lineup. From left: Barry Spanier, Cree Partridge and Jim Antrim pose in front of the Rosie G last week, as the craft of unconvention was still in her earlier stages.
© 2019 Samantha Spanier

The scow bow is certainly the most unconventional aspect of the Rosie G. It’s a feature that Spanier, who enjoyed “fame and fortune” in the windsurfing industry, has long sung the praises of.

“Don’t forget, the [new monohul] America’s Cup boats will have scow bows, too.” Spanner said, citing his experience “as a longtime windsurfer, especially on formula boards. [The AC75s] will need that to set down off the foils without completely submarining. I just can’t figure how any designer of the Volvo Ocean Race or other crazy machines are willing to make the slab side bows that pick up whole waves and dump them on the deck. These bows throw tons of water onboard; it’s constant assault from the sea, being constantly wet, and even the danger of being washed overboard. It seems the pointy thing on the end will be gone in all boats within 20 years. I’m ready to be heavily flamed for this crazy boat idea!”

The not-so-pointy end of the Rosie G.
© 2019 Barry Spanier

Spanier recently wrote about his far-flung adventures (which include a friendship with Bernard Moitessier) in his book, Dear Mom: The Bare Chronicles. Last year, Spanier said he expected to sail the Rosie G out the Gate sometime in 2019, “Just like I did on the Seminole in 1974. I swore I would never sail on the Bay again when we first left. Too damn cold. I’ve been a tropic bird since then.”

Sailing on Sports Talk Radio

On April 3, a friend from South Beach Yacht Club, Patti Mangan, sent us the following alert: “I am on the ground floor of launching a radio program covering the sport of sailing. We have some pros, some classics and some local coverage. We have about 22 minutes within a two-hour sports program. I am handling marketing — social media, drive content, lining up guests, and building up sponsorship/ad sales — and I am super-excited!”

The San Francisco-based show, Sail Sport Talk, premiered on Thursday, April 4, on Sports Byline USA. Weekly 22-minute segments will air every Tuesday at 9:37 a.m. beginning on April 9, as a new segment in Rick Tittle’s Titillating Sports. On April 4, two members from the US Sail GP Team, Rome Kirby and Mac Agnese, were interviewed to mark the one-month-out date of Sail GP coming to San Francisco Bay on May 4-5. Also interviewed were sailors from the Congressional Cup, and Bob Walden of the Yacht Racing Association on Berkeley Yacht Club’s Rollo Wheeler Regatta and more.

Sail GP fleet
Sail Sport Talk Radio’s website splash image.
© 2019 Sail GP

Here are 10 ways to tune in to the Sail Sport Talk segment of Rick Tittle’s weekday morning show Titillating Sports:

  1. Channel 122 on XM Sirius Radio through multiple devices, including: your vehicle, PlayStation, Roku, Apple TV, Smart TVs, Blu Ray and media players, XM Sirius App for mobile devices, plus online streaming. XM Sirius offers a free trial subscription at www.siriusxm.com.
  2. i heart radio: www.iheart.com/live/sports-byline-usa-6673.
  3. Tune In Radio: https://tunein.com/radio/Sports-Byline-USA-s45194.
  4. Channel 2 on CRN Talk Radio:  http://crntalk.com/sportsbylineusa.
  5. Stitcher: www.stitcher.com/podcast/sports-byline-usa.
  6. Twitch: http://sportsbyline.com/tag/twitch.
  7. American Forces Network: 500 stations in 168 countries.
  8. Online streaming on the Sports Byline USA website: http://sportsbyline.com.
  9. United Airlines in-flight programming.
  10. Terrestrial radio stations. West Coast stations include:

Alaska

Anchorage – KFQD – 750 AM
Juneau – KJNO – 630 AM

California

Auburn – KAHI – 950 AM
Bakersfield – KGEO – 1230 AM
Banning – KMET – 1490 AM
Chico – KPAY – 1290 AM
Los Angeles – KLAA – 1330 AM
Loma Linda – KCAA – 1050 AM
Lancaster – KAVL – 610 AM
Mendocino – KMFB – 92.7 FM
Merced – KTIQ – 1660 AM
Mount Shasta – KMJC – 620 AM
Modesto – KFIV – 1360 AM
Porterville – KTIP – 1450 AM
Redding – KNRO – 600 AM
Richmond – KDIA – 1640 AM
Santa Barbara – KIST – 1340 AM
San Diego – XX 1090 – 1090 AM
San Luis Obispo – KVEC – 1360 AM
Sacramento – KHTK 1140 AM
Santa Maria – KSMX – 1240 AM
Stockton – KWSX – 1280 AM
Yreka – KSYC – 1490 AM

Hawaii

Hilo – KPUA – 670 AM
Kahului – KAOI – 1110 AM
Lihue- KQNG – 570 AM

Oregon

Hillsboro – KUIK – 1360 AM
Portland – KOTK – 910 AM
Salem – KSLM – 1390 AM

Washington

Centralia – KELA – 1470 AM
Port Angeles – KONP – 1450 AM
Prosser – KZXR – 1310 AM
Seattle – KQBZ – 100.7 FM
Wenatchee – KPQ – 560 AM
Yakima – KIT – 1280 AM

Shootin' the Breeze
As spring arrives and America’s favorite pastime is in full swing (pun intended), the Bay Area is preparing for the arrival of the foiling cats — and we don’t mean some mischievous felines that are playing with a roll of aluminum foil.
Whatever Floats Your Boat
“People who do not know that a sailboat is a living creature will never understand anything about boats and the sea.”  — Bernard Moitessier, The Long Way Every now and then, readers send us photos of unconventional, custom-built  vessels.
Casual Racing
Monday's 'Lectronic Latitude rolled out the beer can season, which ramps up in a big way this month. Sometime back in medieval times, Latitude 38's late great racing editor, Rob Moore, penned the Ten Commandments of Beer Can Racing. They bear repeating every few years.