At the Singlehanded TransPac Awards Ceremonies Saturday night, the 14 finishers received their coveted TransPac belt buckles, signifying successful completion of their 2,120-mile sprint from San Francisco. Held at Hanalei’s famous Tahiti Nui restaurant/bar, the event also recognized specific achievements of eight solo racers.
The most prestigious award of this biennial race is the Hanalei Yacht Club Trophy, presented to the singlehander who placed first on corrected time in a monohull. This year’s winner was Steve Hodges, who successfully raced his Islander 36 Frolic in the Harrier Division. "This was my second Singlehanded TransPac race," says Steve. "Doing well was a huge highlight and I didn’t break anything. I didn’t really expect to do as well but I redoubled my effort knowing I had a chance to be at the top."
Hodges also won the Jim Tallet Memorial Trophy for first on corrected time on a yacht from outside Northern California, and the Displacement Monohull Trophy for first on elapsed time in a heavier monohull.
Al Germain of the Wyliecat 30 Bandicoot received the Latitude 38 / Nelson’s Trophy for first to finish on corrected time in a monohull from Northern California. He also came in first among the Capri+ Division racers, despite breaking his wishbone boom. "I put that down as operator error," says Al. "The preventer wasn’t rigged to allow it to break before the boom broke." Fortunately he was able to fix it temporarily with a makeshift sleeve and some serious tape — slowing him down but not stopping him.
Having been the first to arrive at the Hanalei Bay finish line (14d, 2h, 54m, 47s), Peter Heiberg on the P/J 50 Scaramouche V won the Jack London Trophy. "I went south at the beginning of the race to be more comfortable — not for strategy," says Peter. "It was shithouse luck that it worked out!" Although this is Peter’s second Singlehanded TransPac, he’s sailed the Pacific so many times that he wouldn’t mind if he never did it again. "The reason I was racing," he says, "is because I felt I didn’t try very hard on the last race. I left something on the table."
The Grover Nibouar Trophy was awarded to Joe Balderrama of the Express 27 Archimedes for arriving first on elapsed time in a small ULDB monohull. "It was like climbing Mt. Shasta," says Joe of his first SHTP. "It stretches your limits and it scrapes the bottom of your soul. It allows you to see what you are really made of."
The last finisher was Doug Paine on the Capri 25 Jack. Having broken a spreader and lost a stay early in the race, Doug’s westward progress was severely hampered, but he hung in there, earning the Perseverance Trophy for his dogged determination. Doug also was awarded the Foxx Fyre Trophy, a discretionary award given by the Race Committee for outstanding effort.