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April 28, 2021

World Ocean Day Coming June 8 — Who Is Your Hero?

Sailors love the oceans and care about them deeply. That has us wondering what sailors should do to celebrate World Ocean Day, coming on June 8. Beyond taking a moment to recognize the day and the value the oceans bring to our lives, we wanted to ask readers what they’d like to do to recognize the day, or to recognize the people and organizations who are doing things large and small to protect and restore ocean health. In other words, who is your ‘Ocean Hero?’

Nets underwater
The Kwai motors up to a group of massive ghost nets. As one can imagine, ghost nets tend to get caught up with one another and make small islands of floating plastic. Ironically, these small, toxic islands attract a lot of marine life and make for fantastic fishing. Sail next to one of these islands and chances are pretty high that you will be eating mahi mahi for dinner.
© 2021 Ocean Voyages Institute

We’re looking back at all the stories we’ve written, like the one above about Mary Crowley’s Ocean Voyages Institute, which has been working hard to clean up the plastics in the Pacific Gyre. We’ve written about Jim ‘Homer’ Holm’s The Clean Ocean Project, which is also working on plastic pollution and on converting plastics into fuel. We recently wrote about Scott Chowning’s project Trash Boats: 1 Ton in 2021 which is collecting plastic trash from our own Bay. As we look back it’s an almost endless list of Bay Area and West Coast sailors who are somehow engaged in restoring ocean health.

manta- giant catamaran
This giant catamaran is approximately 184 feet long, 85 feet wide, and 203 feet tall, and is being built to collect plastics to convert to diesel.
© 2021 The Seacleaners

Most Bay Area community and youth sailing programs such as TISC or ACSC include environmental learning and sustainability as a critical component of their teaching.

Latitude 38 would like to join sailors everywhere in supporting ocean health, and we are now planning coverage in our June magazine, and throughout the month of June in our ‘Lectronic Latitude newsletter. So who is your ‘Ocean Hero?’ We’d appreciate your input, suggestions and nominations for inclusion or recognition. Drop them into the comments below, or send us an email here.

World Oceans Day
Local sailor Scott Chowning is on a mission to collect one ton of trash from the Bay by the end of 2021.
© 2021 Scott Chowning

Happily, we know the list of worthy people and organizations is longer than we can possibly include, but the need is great. And despite the challenges, progress is being made by all who are engaged in this worthy effort.

Pacific Cup 2022 Activates Waiting List

Pacific Cup 2022

While our attention has been focused on the 2021 races to Hawaii, the ‘big’ Transpac and the smaller (but significant) one with the longer name, the Singlehanded Transpacific Yacht Race, the 2022 Pacific Cup has been filling up. In their Earth Day newsletter, the Pacific Cup Yacht Club’s commodore, Jim Quanci, announced that they’ve reached 90 entries and activated the waiting list.

Zamazaan docks in Hawaii
The San Francisco-based Farr 52 Zamazaan docks at Kaneohe Yacht Club at the end of the 2018 Pac Cup.
© 2021 Pacific Cup Yacht Club

“There’s nothing like pent-up demand. With the cancellation of the 2020 race due to COVID, a significant number of our entrants simply rolled their entries over to 2022. Add to that a healthy dose of new and returning racers from prior years, and we have a very complete entry line.

“A bit over a month ago, we had a flood of entries from the larger ‘sled-like’ boats. One can only assume that the rumor mill got churning among that crowd as they assumed — correctly — that we might be activating the waiting list. The sudden rise in the entrant count led us to activate the wait list.”

The number of entries is limited by the capacity at the destination harbor, Kaneohe Bay on Oahu’s east shore.

“There’s usually about a 30% dropout rate,” says Quanci. “We’ve always been able to start everyone who signs up.”

Save the dates: The Pacific Cup is planning a prep seminar for October 9, and a Safety at Sea weekend for November 20-21.

2021 Singlehanded Transpacific Yacht Race

By the way, in addition to serving as commodore of the PCYC, Jim Quanci has signed up his boat, the Cal 40 Green Buffalo, for the 2022 Pac Cup. But before that, he’ll make a repeat showing in the SHTP, which he won overall in 2012. Robb Walker recently entered his Cal 40, Nozomi, in the SHTP. Both boats sail out of Richmond Yacht Club, so that will be an interesting rivalry to watch. Robb is also signed up as navigator aboard Green Buffalo for the Pac Cup. Jim’s sons, Andrew and Stephen, are planning to crew. Got that?

Green Buffalo
Green Buffalo at the start of the SSS Corinthian Race in 2020.
© 2021 Latitude 38 Media LLC / Chris

The current entry list for the SHTP stands at 18; we believe that 16 of those solo sailors are still planning to race. If you were planning to enter, don’t procrastinate any longer. Registration closes at midnight on May 1. The race itself will start from in front of the Golden Gate YC in San Francisco on June 19 and finish in Hanalei Bay in Kauai.

2021 Transpac

The Transpac from Los Angeles to Honolulu is a big-boat race, with the smallest boat SSS member David Garman’s 1D35 Such Fast, based in Renton, Washington. The largest boat is Manouch Moshayedi’s 100-ft Bakewell-White Rio 100. Click here to view the current entry list.

GoodEnergy ex-Loki
The 63-ft Reichel/Pugh-designed GoodEnergy (ex-Loki), co-skippered by George Hershman and Mark Comings, was the 60th entry in the Transpac.
© 2021 Transpac Yacht Club

On May 8, Stan Honey will present a Navigation & Strategy Seminar: Thinking Through the Transpac Race. Transpac YC will send registered skippers and crews a Zoom link for the webinar.

We’ll have full previews of and race reports from the 2021 races to Hawaii in the summer issues of Latitude 38.

Max Ebb on Docking: Walk the Walk

In April’s Latitude 38, Max Ebb, Lee Helm, and a retired pilot discuss prop walk after Max gets some help docking a friend’s boat.

“Docking a big boat is all about confidence.” Those words came to mind as I maneuvered my friend’s boat toward its slip. It was twice the size and five times the weight of my own boat, and I had volunteered to move it back to its marina berth from the boatyard while the owner was out of town.

This was a single-finger berth, port-side-to, and there was some wind blowing away from the dock. A little bit of extra speed would be required on the final approach, to minimize the effect of the wind. “No problem,” I thought to myself. “I’ll hit reverse at the right time, and the prop walk will pull the stern to port.”

A voice in my head asked me to practice reverse thrust out in the fairway, but confidence overruled and the voice was ignored. I should have listened. The approach into the slip went exactly as planned, but when I applied power in reverse, the stern swung to starboard, not port, and the wind was blowing me against the neighbor to leeward, a large powerboat, with no room for backing and filling. Naturally, I had not put out any fenders to starboard.

Fortunately, the boat to starboard was a liveaboard, and the owner appeared on deck just in time to help me fend off. Other onlookers ran to help, and it wasn’t long before my friend’s big yacht was safely pulled up against the port-side finger.

“Must be a left-handed prop,” deduced the liveaboard skipper to starboard after I explained what had gone wrong with my docking attempt. “Sure felt like it,” I agreed. “I expected the prop walk to pull the stern to port, like it usually does.”

Prop walk when docking
The primary source of prop walk is deflected upwash from the propeller in reverse, especially strong when the boat is still coasting forward.
© 2021 Max Ebb

“Not with a lefty propeller,” he said. “It’s all about torque and P-factor. Ask any pilot.”

“I understand torque,” I said. “But what is this P-factor?”

“Ask any pilot,” he repeated. “And I just happen to have logged a couple of thousand hours.”

He didn’t wait for me to ask but launched into asymmetrical flight dynamics 101.

“P-factor is when one side of the propeller is producing more thrust than the other side,” he began. “Think of a powerful single-engine plane with a big propeller. Especially a taildragger. The plane starts the ground roll with a high angle of attack. The propeller shaft is nowhere near parallel to the incoming air flow, so the blades on the starboard side of the plane, going down and partly into the incoming flow, see more wind and more angle of attack than the blades on the port side of the plane going up. That puts more thrust on the right side than the left, so you have to push down hard on the right rudder pedal just to stay lined up with the runway. After liftoff, during climb, the angle of attack is still higher than in level flight, so you still have that unbalanced thrust trying to make the plane turn left, and you have to keep pressure on the right rudder.

Continue reading at, or go pick up a magazine.

May Yacht Racing Preview

Yacht Racing Association

The YRA will continue their Shorthanded Sunday Series on May 2 (the Island Tour Regatta) and May 23 (the North South Regatta). Entries for the May 2 race close today, Wednesday, April 28!

Russian Roulette and CentoMiglia with spinnakers
On a foggy day in August, the J/105 Russian Roulette and Flying Tiger CentoMiglia approach Raccoon Strait in the 2020 Islands Tour.
© 2021 Latitude 38 Media LLC / Chris

The YRA’s Summer Series for full crew on short courses will continue on May 8.

The OYRA Series will resume on the 22nd, with the Duxship Race around the Duxbury Reef buoy (off Bolinas) and the Lightship.

NorCal Regattas

San Francisco Yacht Club’s Elite Keel invites J/105, Express 37, J/88, Melges 24, J/70, SF Bay IOD, Knarr and J/24 fleets to race on May 1-2.

“Shake off the dust, swab the decks, and brush up on your social skills. It’s time to emerge from isolation and go sailing,” writes Moore 24 secretary/treasurer Sarah Raymoure. The Moore 24 fleet will sail their Nationals at Santa Cruz May 7-9. Why? “Arms vaxxed, hulls waxed and ready to kick AXX!” says Sarah. Register here.

Moore 24s racing in Santa Cruz
The Moore 24 fleet beats north to Natural Bridges in a race in Santa Cruz in 2018.
© 2021 Latitude 38 Media LLC / Chris

On May 8, Monterey Peninsula YC will host the Club Laser Champs.

The next race for the Singlehanded Sailing Society will be the Singlehanded Farallones Race on May 15. Also on that day, Sausalito YC will kick off their Classic Boat Invitational Series.

On May 15-16, St. Francis YC will welcome invited one-design dinghies to the Elvstrom/Zellerbach Regatta, then they’ll welcome invited classes, ORR and PHRF keelboats to the Stone Cup on May 21-23.

The Master Mariners Regatta for classic vessels is a go for the 29th, the Saturday of Memorial Day Weekend.

Schooners sail past Lime Point
A trio of schooners reach across the Golden Gate in the 2018 Master Mariners Regatta.
© 2021 Scott Wall

Also on Memorial Day Weekend is the Whiskeytown Sailing Association’s Memorial Weekend Regatta on Whiskeytown Lake.

SoCal Regattas

San Diego YC will host the Yachting Cup on May 1-2. That same weekend, Santa Barbara Sailing Club will put on their Cinco de Mayo Regatta.

Los Angeles YC’s Breakout Regatta Series will continue on May 8.

AllCal Regattas

California Offshore Race Week returns! It will start on May 29, with the Spinnaker Cup from San Francisco Bay to Monterey. On May 31, racers will depart Monterey for Santa Barbara in the Coastal Cup. The SoCal 300 will wrap up the series on June 3-5. Got a really, really fast boat, like a MOD70? The CA 500 is for you. Sail all the way from San Francisco to San Diego nonstop on June 3-5.

SC50s and 70 in Monterey
In Monterey, the start of the sleds in the 2019 Coastal Cup. The entire 2020 Offshore Race Week was canceled.
© 2021 Latitude 38 Media LLC / Chris

For info on all of the above, see

High School Sailing

High school racing resumes this weekend for the first time since the pandemic struck. Encinal YC will host the NorCal Championships on May 1-2, while the US Sailing Center of Long Beach hosts the SoCal Championships. USSCLB will host the Gold Pacific Coast Championship on May 8-9. All of these regattas will be sailed in CFJs.

For many more regattas and events around the region, check our May Calendar, coming out in the May issue of Latitude 38 this Friday, April 30.

Stanford University Sailors March Against Funding Cuts

Stanford University students marched outside the school on Monday to protest planned funding cuts that will see the end of 11 varsity sports programs. According to KPIX 5, the changes, announced last July, will affect women’s and coed sailing along with lightweight rowing, men’s rowing, field hockey, squash, synchronized swimming, men’s and women’s fencing, men’s volleyball, and wrestling.

The university had explained its decision in a letter to its community that said that the athletic department was facing a “serious and growing financial challenge” exacerbated by the pandemic.  Figures cited indicated the university was facing a shortfall of $12 million.

However, the protesting students do not believe the university needs to take the drastic action. Kyler Presho, who is part of the men’s volleyball team, told KPIX 5, “With a $29 billion endowment, there is no figure too large to save these 11 communities – these 11 sports – that have been cut.”

Stanford University Sailing
Stanford sailing won its third conference championship, sailing undefeated to secure the PCCSC (Pacific Coast Conference Championships) Team Race title last Sunday. But what does their future hold?
© 2021 Stanford University

Students will now have to wait a few more weeks for the university to announce its final decision.

Sailing Always Includes Water
Opening Day on the Bay 2021 might have been damp, but it was loads of fun as boats dressed up and paraded across the water.
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SailGP Season Opener
Under a challenging COVID cloud, the organizers at SailGP delivered an action-packed regatta making the best of the current situation in the worst of circumstances in locked-down Bermuda.