• July 12 Afternoon Update: Repeat Slab Of Koa Wood Award For RIO 100?


    The big picture as seen here with the entire remaining fleet as of 13:00 HST Wednesday July 12

    The lead remaining boats are descending upon Hula Town USA and the awaiting Lei jokes and oversized fruity cocktails.

    The estimated time for RIO is in the wee hours tomorrow. No glorious Molokai Channel sweet light helo shots this trip. Sorry guys

    But the Barn Door is still in grasp, so keep the rudder you have left clean and intact. You are gonna need it!

    "Awarded each race for the Fastest Monohull Elapsed Time in the race. Originally the "First to Finish" Trophy. Since 2009 restricted to manual power only sailing yachts."

    In a magic ending moment, the script writers would build the suspense down to the final seconds with the underdog battling his bigger foe, with lots
    of back and forth drama that would keep the audience on pins and needles. The reality is, with 241 nm to go RIO 100 has a 90 nm DTF lead and a 48 nm 24 hour vmg advantage.
    It would take a catastrophe for Manouch's Men to give that away. For Frank Slootman's Invisible Hand's crews yeoman's effort, it would appear the King Kalakaua trophy for the 1st corrected overall yacht, will have to suffice. That, and the 1st in Division 1. And 1st in ORR.

    Not a bad haul.

    The brand new PAC 52 has had and impressive run, and under the guidance of Gavin Brady, has run an impeccable race, and with less than 300 nm to go own a near 7 hour advantage over
    the nearest competitor for ORR title, the J-125 Resolute. The advantage is very similar over sistership Bad Pak for Div 1 honors.... But it ain't over til it's over.

    So they say.

    While the Magic Kitty still sporting the Tiara in Division 2, the fleet is tight, the lead is tenuous.
    With under 600 nm to go for all but Buona Sera and Mr Bill, it is a division up for grabs. A breakdown here
    a snared net there, a last minute shift in the weather and BOOM, new leader.

    Varuna, Chris Hemen's Rogers 46' is sporting a healthy lead in Division 3, 112 nm closer to finish than division leader,
    Tim Fuller's J-125 Resolute. but they lage by 3 hours on corrected time. It appears to be a two boat race at this point,
    but counting out Lady Kanon VI would be unwise.

    Resolute Update: 7/11 (cont.)
    "I know Brian said we turned left, but....."
    ..we turned back.

    Around 11:30 this morning, it seemed like it was time to gybe (turn) and head toward Honolulu with a wind shift we'd gotten. And then, we got another one and gybed back. My right arm has been getting a workout for the past six days trimming, so I WAS happy to get a little left arm work in. Alas, it was not meant to be. I'll just have to keep having right-handed arm wrestling contests.
    For anyone who has not been reading the Facebook page, you probably haven't heard about the savage flying fish attack last night. Matt got hit right in the face. The flying fish have been trying to get us for days, but have been missing (although there have been a couple of close calls). We've found a bunch on the deck and thought we had the upper hand, but I guess they're sending in their best pilots now. We'll see what happens throughout the rest of the race.

    Good news: Just as I came down here to write this, the distance to our waypoint (the finish) ticked to under 700 miles! That's a real morale booster -- although things get a little trickier from here on out. Brian says we're doing well, so every decision is an important one and every knot of boatspeed counts.

    We're romping happily along out here. But, the boat dreams have started to become really weird (maybe Jimmy Buffett should have written a song about boat dreams instead of boat drinks). I'm going to have to sell my car because of my dream that there was a rattlesnake inside that WOULD not leave (mom and dad, if you could handle that before I get home, that would be great) and Tim had a dream that we were waiting for an uber to finish the race. I checked my app and we're a bit out of the service area here.

    I'd like to report that everything is still smelling sweetly, but it's not. It's pretty gamey down below on the boat. Almost like there are five guys living in a confined, closed in space in the tropics. But, it's only four guys...and me...and let me tell you, I'm definitely part of the problem.
    Congrats to the boys on Mighty Merloe. Artie, I guess this means you're up 2 to 1 now.

    Aside from Medusa wandering off to the north, the 50-52's are a close knit group. And while Horizon is the defacto leader of the gang at this juncture,
    a 4-5 hour corrected lead, 600 miles to go, with Prevail, Sin Duda and Hula Girl all dipping into the spinach can, things happen.

    Hula Girl's Pit Boss Wayne Zittle:

    Oh man, we have a race on out here! We are one week into the 2017 Transpac aboard J/World's Hula Girl, and this is fantastic sailing.

    Our fleet is phenomenally tight as pass the 75% mark. Consider this: we were in fourth place a couple days ago. We got some fishing net stuck on the keel which we dragged a while before we could drop the spinnaker and 'back down' to get it off. That was Monday morning. Then Monday night we got an unknown something stuck on the keel and had to repeat the process. Come next standings update, we had fallen to 7th. Ouch. Newly motivated to redeem ourselves, we busted our humps and, what do you know, next roll call we were in 4th again. Then after another couple days of hard work, we were excited to see that as of roll call this morning, we had climbed into third place. But it is super close. With Horizon a bit punched out, there are about 5 boats seriously in contention for second place. This is some seriously fun stuff and close racing!

    Just before sunset yesterday we jibed towards the south. It's a bit early to make that move as usually in the Transpac you want to hold off on the turn south until you are pretty far West, almost to the layline for Hawaii. But this year there will be some general lightening across the course and all the weather models are showing a left shift in a couple days, at which point we will want to jibe back to starboard tack. It's a bit nerve wracking to be separating from most of our fleet, but in analyzing and (re-analyzing) all the data, it really looks like the right thing to do. And as of this morning, we have a number of boats coming our way. So here goes nothing!

    Yesterday we dried out some of the sails and jibs used earlier in the race, refolded them and packed them down below. We had some nice sunshine and beautiful sailing, and it looks like more of the same on tap for today. Most of the crew took showers (woo-hoo!). Last night we had chef's select sashimi grade Ahi, lightly seared, crusted with sesame seeds and prepared with a dijon mustard laced ponzu sauce. The fish was served with garden greens tossed in a raspberry vinaigrette, and paired with a crisp dry Napa Chardonay. Just kidding. We had freeze dried.

    Early this morning we had our first tropical squall. It was a pretty weak one, but brought a little bit of rain. Nice. We saw a cruise ship a couple days ago, a few birds, a good number of flying fish, and sadly more trash. Other than that, we could be led to believe that we are pretty much alone out here. But we know that there are a whole lot of boats racing, and we will probably start to bunch up in the bottleneck towards the finish, so maybe we'll see more of our fleet in the next couple days.

    Everyone is doing great.... driving has been super solid, and I have been really impressed with everyone's level of engagement: there is no cleat-it-and-forget-it mindset here. The trimming and grinding has been top shelf and the whole team has earned my admiration! It's about 8am local time here. "Easy D" (Derek) is driving, Jimmy 'Peterbilt' is trimming, Andreas grinding, and Patrick is trying to untangle the spinnaker net. Argh.

    Ok, that's it for now... more soon... stay tuned for what could be an exciting finish!

    Wayne Zittel and the Hula Girl Team

    Division 5: Locomotive projected as division winner.

    Day 9. We have finished all of our pre-made meals, put together by Ryan James’ Smoking Bowls Edibles. They were really good and well enjoyed by the whole team. Last night was Trader Joe’s Jaipur Vegetable curry with Spam! The Spam was courtesy of Larry’s dock neighbour, Joan and John. Next up is freeze dried meals, so that should be fantastic! We have about 3 days and change to go in lightening conditions. This has to be the flattest crossing I have ever made. That said, we amazingly had another round up yesterday morning! With the same driver! He lost some more points from his license and could be in jeopardy of having it fully revoked and sent to a round up rehabilitation facility. I won’t say who it was so as to protect the guilty! The repair held, but the Navigator took a beating falling from navigation station to the galley, both of which are normally at the same level, except when the boat is on it’s side at which point the Navigation seat is some five feet above the galley.

    Race wise, well you guys are following the YB tracker so you know what it looks like. We have done well positioning the boat in mostly better pressure, with good angles, options to gybe and the ability to protect the position.

    The Loco team has developed into a fully functional and operational Death Star,capable of……oops, sorry wrong movie. Let’s just say that this group of malcontents are working out just fine, thank you very much.

    The Nav, (slightly bruised and battered)

    Dark Star and Creative battle for corrected time honors, with Dark Star leading physically and mathematically!

    However division honorable mention to Ande Omo for bestest blog!

    Onde Amo Day 10

    July 12, 2017, 1100

    Well, we are in the tradewinds that will carry us to Hawaii. From the latest reports, it looks like the winds will be consistent from here to the finish, with maybe a build in the winds and seas as we come down the Molokai Channel to the finish off Diamond Head.

    Like the night before, we switched to a heavier spinnaker for the overnight to save the A2 for the daylight sailing and hopefully, the finish. We switched back to the A2 this morning right after daybreak. The hours are really starting to get weird as we stay on PDT and continue to head west. Sunset now comes after 2200 and daybreak doesn't come until after 0800.

    Early this morning, we had a couple of interesting events. First, a boat, which we think was Buona Sera, passed us within about 5 boat lengths. A bit close in rolling seas with light winds, which makes the boat hard to control. Oh well, we didn't have an incident, but would have preferred more room. Of course, he was the leeward boat, so he had right-of-way. We had a bird following us for a couple of hours early this morning and doing a kind of flyby, like he was looking for food. After I went off watch at 0500, a flying fish landed in the cockpit. Dave was concerned that the bird might try to land, so he came up with the idea of lighting the bird up with his headlamp to scare it off. Unfortunately, he lit Jim's left eye up at close range with the brightest white light his headlamp could offer. After examination, we think the burns to his retina will heal in the next few weeks. Brilliant!

    Looks to be another hot, clear day. Yesterday, we started with overcast like every other morning before that and then it cleared up and got hot. Trying to nap down below was difficult, so there was a dog pile of three or four off-watch bodies trying to sleep on the pile of spare spinnakers in the "Debbie Bag". Quite the sight!

    We have named most of the spinnakers as follows:

    A1 - "Clifford" as it is solid red
    A2 - "Good and Plenty" as it is pink, grey and black
    .5 oz - "Casper" as it is solid white
    .5 oz - "Islands" as it has the logo of the previous owners but looks like an island chain sewn on it
    .75 oz - "Patches" as it has been repaired several times
    1.0 oz - unnamed at this time, please feel free to forward any suggestions
    1.5 oz - "Thor" because it is powerful and very tough

    We found a stowaway night before last. It was pretty lumpy and the boat was bouncing around quite a bit. In the middle of it, my iPad comes to life and Siri starts asking if she can help in some way. I was able to convince her that we had it under control, primarily by the use of the on/off button on the iPad. We found it pretty hilarious, but it may be that we are getting pretty delirious!

    Pressing on towards Honolulu…

    And last but not least, Division 7. Some of which are NOT projected to get into port until a week from now ( please clean up after yourself and turn off the lights)

    We have the Norwegian Could, er Wasa 44, Cubaneren now in front of our two class favorites, The Cal 40s, Azure and Sequoia which look like flankers to the
    north and south in the current chartlet. It's a small lead to be sure, 32 minutes and 2.35 hours give or take, but how could they???

    Perhaps some redress will come to the Azures aide once they finish.

    See their earlier blog entry from yesterday:

    11 July 2017 | Pacific Ocean
    We are about 800 miles away from Honolulu and all is well on board. We are still in first place for our division so far. Today the sun finally came out and Tony saw his favorite albatross to start the day. Our next challenge will be to determine our gibe mark to head for Hawaii. You do not want to wait too early or too late, so we are doing a bunch of calculations to determine the correct time.

    We received a distress call from the Santa Cruise 52 Medusa at about 11:30am this morning. They reported their fuel was contaminated with water, they were out of power, and were requesting assistance. We measured the fuel we had and offered 5 gallons, and we converged for the transfer at about 4:30 pm - I am sure the yellow brick must show us stopped for some time. Transferring fuel in the middle of the pacific in 18 knots of wind with big swells is not easy. Then we had to figure out how to get the fuel out of our tank. Luckily Medusa had and electric transfer pump and some empty containers. They put everything in a big drybag with a fender attached and sailed by to toss in on Azure. We successfully transferred at least 5 gallons of diesel, in milk containers, OJ containers, and spent motor oil containers. We were able to set everything afloat and they were able to swing by and pick it up. Medusa radioed us later to say every thing was ok, the engine was running and batteries were charging.

    The clouds out here in the middle of the ocean are really nice. You can see under them forever, so they make for great sunsets and create some unusual shapes. Jim cracked me up this morning looking at one strange cloud - "Angry Birds" he yelled.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: 2017 Transpac: Go South Young Man started by Photoboy View original post