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Foundation of Philosophy

As noted in the story above, the day you start a race can have a big impact on how you finish. You ready the factors that you can control. You prepare your boat, crew, meals, and strategy, and fine-tune everything for the 2070-mile race to Hawaii. But then you look at your starting window, which is spread across four days — Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday. It’s time to see what the weather gods have decided to deal you. That’s when you get philosophical, as in, ‘You have to play the hand you’re dealt,’ or some other maxim for looking on the bright side of the single-digit cards in your hand.

The cool wind tool,, shows a projected offshore wind forecast for the week:

Look out the window today and you can see it’s nice. Once you get out the Gate, you’ve got a nice reaching breeze toward Hawaii. 

© 2018
By Wednesday, that nice reaching offshore breeze seems to flake out. 

© 2018
Thursday starters look even more challenged with southerlies and a breezeless ‘blue hole’ ahead. 

© 2018
Friday’s boats are fast but, even so, they may have an extended opportunity to enjoy the view of the California coastline.  

© 2018
When you zoom out and see what’s ahead for boats that finally break away from the California coast you see another ‘blue hole’ ahead. A navigator’s challenge. 

© 2018

As we sit at our computer, those ‘blue holes’ on the wind charts remind us of the times the ‘spinning wheel of death’ shows up on your computer screen. Neither is easy to deal with. 

Like all weather, these images are subject to change. But, for now, we’d be happiest starting today, which is the lucky draw for the first four divisions. For the rest of the week we’d be having philosophical thoughts like, ‘It’s only a yacht race,’ and, ‘Patience is a virtue.’ And then, ‘Damn, this sucks.’



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After much anticipation and preparation — by both organizers and competitors — the 20th Pacific Cup yacht race officially gets underway today, with the first four starts off the San Francisco Cityfront, including three racing divisions and one cruising.
Birders might have what they call a ‘Big Year‘; the Singlehanded Sailing Society had a Big Day when seven boats out of a 16-boat fleet finished the Singlehanded TransPac yesterday, Sunday, July 8.