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First TransPac Division Starts

The mighty Dorade, restored by StFYC’s Matt Brooks, looking fine at the start of the 2013 TransPac Race.

© Trans Pacific YC

Fourteen boats from Divisions 7 and 8 of the 47th TransPac Race from San Pedro to 2,225-mile distant Honolulu got away on Monday in ideal conditions. There were 15 knots of wind out of the west at the start, and the wind built into the night.

Two boats we’re following with particular interest are a couple of old woodies. The first is Sam and Willie Bell’s Seal Beach- and Los Angeles YC-based Lapworth 50 Westward, which was built in 1962. The last time we saw her was on the hook in Bequia about 25 years ago, and she was looking a little rough back then. But she’s turned in an excellent 24-hour run of 224 miles in what often is the slowest part of the race.

The other woody is the lengendary S&S 52 Dorade, built 33 years before Westward, which Matt Brooks of Fremont and the St. Francis YC had completely restored. Brooks is in the middle of redoing all the races Dorade sailed in — and won — from 80+ years ago. This includes the TransPac, the Transatlantic Race, the Fastnet Race, and so forth. Dorade turned in a very nice 189 miles.

The next two TransPac starts are on July 11 and 13, which is when the bad boys have at it.

The TransPac YC has an excellent website for following the action on their live (six-hour delay) tracker, and this is a particularly exciting TransPac year, so check it out!

In the Mini 650 Pacific Challenge, there is only one left. After two of the five entries were DSQd before the start, and two others resigned from racing, only Belmont’s Sean McGinn on his custom Zero Daisy Cutter is left racing. He’s understandably disappointed but vows to continue his journey. "Having survived a windy night, which required him to take a 3rd reef," notes a report on the event’s website, "he pledged to soldier on and carry the burden of making the Mini 650 Pacific Challenge a part of sailboat racing history.

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