We recently received a press release from US Sailing, offering sailors $5,000 to go sailing. Sounds cool, right?
The press release said, “Do you want $5,000 to travel the country with your teammates and friends to match race? Are you a US-based sailor between the ages of 19 and 29? Do you want to feel the rush of putting a vessel with tonnage on a collision course with another boat? If you answered yes to these questions, then the David Storrs Match Racing Grant Program can help provide an epic summer of sailing for you!” Check it out here.
The US Sailing application describes the founding of the grant: “In 2019, one of the greats of Match Racing, David Storrs, passed on to calm seas and fair weather. David was not only a solid match-racing competitor, he became a champion. He climbed to the position of #1 American and #13 in the World on the World Sailing Match Racing Ranking. He was on the podium often but was happiest in October of 2017 when, at age 73 years, he won the final match in the US Match Racing Championship to claim the Prince of Wales Bowl. In his will, David left a generous gift to the US Sailing Match Racing Committee that has made this grant program possible.”
The West Coast is home to numerous match-racing champions, including 2021 Women’s Match Racing Champion Nicole Breault. San Francisco Bay is also home to match-racing champion Liz Baylis, the executive director of the Women’s International Match Racing Series. San Diego’s Taylor Canfield won the Men’s World Match Racing Tour in 2019.
If you want to join other West Coast champions, the application process is open and runs through March 15.
This week’s host, John Arndt, is joined by Bill Erkelens to chat about The Ocean Race 2022-2023, and sustainability in sailing. Bill is the chief operating officer for the 11th Hour Racing Team and recorded this from latitude 38 — Lisbon, that is!
Hear how to pick the perfect boat for your next race and build the perfect team, about the latest technology in racing boats, how to build boats more sustainably, and how to get any sleep during The Ocean Race.
This episode covers everything from racing to sustainability. Here’s a small sample of what you will hear:
- How did Bill get started in offshore racing?
- What’s the secret for married couples doing doublehanded races together?
- How much is Bill involved in the race right now?
- What is the role of the chief operating officer during a race?
- Do the boats use AI?
- What is 11th Hour Racing?
- Where do the sustainability gains come from in boatbuilding?
- Short Tacks: How would Bill inspire non-sailors to sail?
Rubicon spends more time with buyers and sellers than any other Bay Area yacht brokerage. This hard work translates into more boats being sold and more boats for sale. Our brokers are in the office day and night listing and selling boats because it’s what they love to do. Stop by one of our six locations to get started.
As this article goes to press, the fleet of five foiling IMOCA 60s participating in The Ocean Race are docking out and preparing to begin the second of seven legs in their race around the world. After experiencing a wide range of conditions, ranging from gale-force upwind sailing shortly after the start in the Mediterranean to fast running and reaching down the Atlantic, the second leg of the race is expected to begin in much lighter conditions. Leg 2 will take the five teams from the Cape Verde Islands toward the equator and into the South Atlantic before a finish in Cape Town, South Africa.
Leading the standings after one leg is the Holcim PRB team led by French skipper Kevin Escoffier. Having brought up-and-coming rock-star Englishman Sam Goodchild onboard, among other amazing sailors, the team seemingly has boat speed for days and is expected to again set the benchmark for the class. Not far behind Holcim PRB on Leg 1 was American entry 11th Hour Racing. Skippered by Newport, Rhode Island’s Charlie Enright, the team found themselves somewhat hampered during the first leg after they tore their J3 jib on their radar dome when tacking in high winds in the Mediterranean. Having made repairs to the sail during the Cape Verde stopover, the team should again be back up to full strength and will see their crew lineup bolstered by the inclusion of female phenom Justine Mettraux, who replaces Francesca Clapcich for Leg 2.
The third-place team on Leg 1, Team Malizia, will include replacement crewmember Yann Elies. Elies will fill in for injured skipper Boris Herrmann, who reportedly suffered a leg and foot burn on Leg 1. (Crewmember Will Harris will fill the role of skipper for this leg.) Yann Elies is one of the best offshore sailors and IMOCA specialists on Earth and will almost certainly provide a bit of a spark plug to Team Malizia.
Fourth-placed Biotherm got off to a phenomenal start in the flat waters of Alicante, but fell off the pace and then suffered when they chose an inshore option that saw them sailing in lighter winds during Leg 1. Look for skipper Paul Meilhat and the rest of the team to be extra-motivated to prove their relatively lackluster performance to be a fluke.
Last place in the first leg was Robert Stanjek’s Guyot environnement – Team Europe, the only boat in the fleet that is not brand-new. Originally built as Hugo Boss for Alex Thomson for the 2016 Vendée Globe, the boat was designed specifically to be a bit narrower and more easily driven than some of her rivals and could prove to be a wild card in the forecast lighter conditions for the start and into the doldrums.
While the IMOCAs were first into Mindelo, Cape Verde Islands, and stole the lion’s share of the media attention, the fleet of six VO65s competing in the VO65 Sprint Race have now all reached Cape Verde. The last to arrive was Viva Mexico, which finally reached the finish after ripping their mainsail in the Mediterranean and stopping in Almeria, Spain, to pick up a replacement.
In the end, the Polish WindWhisper Racing Team claimed first place, while Team Jajo and the Austrian Ocean Racing Team rounded out the podium after Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team had to retire due to missing a mark on the course while leaving Gibraltar and not exonerating themselves. The six teams competing in the VO65 Sprint Cup will start racing again on June 5 in Aarhus, Denmark. Follow along on Leg 2 of The Ocean Race at www.theoceanrace.com.
Listen to this week’s Good Jibes podcast with 11th Hour Racing’s COO Bill Erkelens here.
Looking through the Latitude 38 Classy Classifieds always reminds us just how many ways there are to sail. The boats in our classifieds vary widely — all different, all fun. Beyond the boats in Classifieds, there are windsurfers, kiteboards, iceboats and foiling IMOCA 60s. You can sail singlehanded or doublehanded — which reminds us: Today is the last day to sign up for the Three Bridge Fiasco.
As we write, there are 296 boats signed up for the Three Bridge Fiasco, meaning you could be the boat that pushes it over 300. A note from the Singlehanded Sailing Society sent yesterday said, “The rain is over and we forecast a fun event this coming Saturday, January 28, for the Three Bridge Fiasco. If you didn’t win one of the recent big Powerball drawings, your luck is coming in another form this year — perhaps a great day on the water that makes unforgettable stories to tell. Register now at https://jibeset.net/JACKY000.php?RG=T002368094.
Back to the boats. It was while looking at the two boats below that we again saw how many ways people “float their boat.” A Tayana 37 and a Riptide 35 appeared side by side on the Classy home page. One for cruising the other for racing, though the Tayana can be raced and the Riptide cruised; however, that wouldn’t be their strong suit.
The Riptide and the Tayana couldn’t be more different in purpose, but they’re both driven by the wind and will attract the sailor who’s aligned with their strengths. One for cruising over the horizon and one for doing a horizon job on the competition.
The homebuilt, fiberglassed, plywood sharpie above has a whole different vibe. Bruce Kirby, the designer of the Laser, drew the lines, so we’d guess it’s an easy boat to sail and cruise the Delta. It says it comes with a trailer too!
Or if you’re looking to spend some energy and love on preparing your boat, you could consider the Hunter or Tayana below, both of which have great bones but need a little attention in some areas and are priced accordingly.
We love our current boat, but thumbing through the Classy Classifieds we can picture ourselves having great days aboard any one of the boats above. So many boats, so little time. But, as Crosby, Stills & Nash sang, “If you can’t be with the one you love, honey, love the one you’re with.”