Friday, July 14, 2017

Transpac Race Update

J/125 RESOLUTE sailing Transpac Race J/Crews on J/125 and J/105 Leading Classes
(Los Angeles, CA)- The 49th edition of the 2017 biennial offshore classic, the Transpac Race, started on July 3rd, 5th, and 6th from Point Fermin in Los Angeles to the finish at Diamond Head in Honolulu 2,225nm away. Among the fifty-five teams, there will be no shortage of anxiety playing the big Pacific High as it wobbles around, avoiding the notorious U.F.O’s (underwater floating objects), and breathless anticipation as Diamond Head looms over the horizon knowing that you have less than 10 miles to go to the finish line!

As of Wednesday, in Class 5 we find Ed Sanford’s J/105 CREATIVE from San Diego YC currently 2nd in class on 6th day of racing.

Then, in Class 3 are the two notoriously fast J/125s- RAISIN’ CANE and RESOLUTE.  Each team has been blogging via Inmarsat satellite service almost every day.  Here are interesting perspectives on their progress below from each team.

Tim Fuller’s J/125 RESOLUTE from San Diego YC
Day 1- July 5, 2017
All is well onboard Resolute. No major issues so far. A few leaks here and there and our gyro-heading sensor has decided to quit on us so we are down to a backup. We currently have 18 kts of wind and are doing 11.5 avg w/ the Jib Top, genoa staysail and reefed main. We are looking forward to get a more favorable wind direction tonight so we can put up the code zero and send it.

It's been a bumpy and wet last 24 hours w/ 4-5' swells w/ 1-2' wind chop on top of it. Making good progress already logging 252 miles and 2007 to go.  Brian

Day 2- July 6, 2017
Greeting Resolute fans! After a pretty fair start and first (24) hours of sailing thing are settling down. The wind Gods have been friendly so far, but its been a wet ride. Our top speed has been just under 20 knots with a reefed main, Code 0 and a genoa staysail flying. A couple of annoying leaks have cropped up, but we have McGyvered solutions. With the benefit of hindsight, I should have brought along new foul weather pants. I can honestly say I have the wettest butt on the planet right now, and so looking forward to when it sailing in shorts time ahead. The guys and Alli are all doing great. I feel very fortunate to be out here with such a fantastic and fun group of people. As I type, we have 1,968 miles to go. That is a long way on a 41' sailboat, but before you know it, we'll hear the HYC greeting "Aloha Resolute." Thanks for following along.  Tim Fuller - Skipper

Day 3- July 7, 2017, 1400
Hello Resolute fans. We are just cruising along today. Since about 6:00 last night we have a double head rig working with a C0, GS and now a full main. For all you non-sailors that's as many sails as we can fly at this wind angle without tipping over!

Our top speed so far is 22 knots. Interesting sight today as Comanche (100 foot and largest boat in the fleet) passed right next to us about noontime. AIS showed them ripping along at 24 knots in about 14 knots of wind! Yes, that is REALLY fast. They went from the horizon behind to the horizon ahead in about an hour. Famed navigator Stan Honey is aboard so we felt good about our position knowing we were sharing the same water at least for a while.

Our routing and weather predict a spinnaker up for us later tonight, and that's when we turn on the jets. Things should flatten out and dry out at least then too. I do have dry shorts on now in case anyone out there was wondering. We still have 1,773 miles to go out here in the blue pacific, so stay tuned.  Tim Fuller - Skipper

Day 4- July 8, 1500- RESOLUTE winning class!
Good morning Resolute Fans!  We're somewhere in the middle of our third day out here and things are feeling fine. I know you've likely seen the sailing updates from Brian, so I'm here to give you a little glimpse into life on board.

Transpac Aloha Mahalo Party sendoffLet's start at the very beginning -- the dock. Somehow, media got word that the youngest member of the fleet was aboard Resolute: Allison Bell, the 12 year-old. I appreciate the 25 years back! After an interview and some video footage (maybe keep your eye on the Transpac Facebook page and other sites), we satisfied the paparazzi, finished up final prep and headed to the start line. It was pretty neat to see Westward out there, at least for me, and nice to have all the support from loved ones.

We started, headed to Catalina and beyond. We settled nicely into our watch system and are doing 4 hours on during the day, 3 hours on at night. Everyone seems to be happy and healthy. The food is pretty good and so far, it doesn't smell too badly down below. The only complaint is that I apparently snore, which I have yet to believe because I haven't heard it!

The men on board have likely been keeping things cleaner than usual, is my suspicion, but they'll soon forget to mind their manners.  Time to go-- today is one of my favorite days-- underwear change day! All is well aboard Resolute!  - Alli Bell

Day 5- July 9th
Well, we are just having a heck of a time out here. The great sailing conditions are offsetting the lack of sleep, odor in the boat, and overall hygiene.

Just received the latest position report and we continue to climb up the leader board. We now stand first in class and 6th overall after a 300-mile day and 281 of that DMG. The new Pac 52 boats are going to be tough to beat but we are doing our best to keep up the pace.

After the latest weather download we expect the winds to continue to be 14-18 knots with a gradual lift trending as we sail around an isobar. There is a high pressure moving down with really light winds so we will be monitoring that closely. There is still a long way to go but at this point in time we will continue on starboard for another 600 miles and then gybe close to our layline to finish. We are all looking forward to some time on port tack so our bodies can straighten out and we can do some grinding with our left arms.  Stay tuned for more updates.  - Brian

Day 6- July 10, 2017, 1300
Hi you’all. There is so much that I forgot to tell you in my last post and that has happened in the last day.

First, sailing at night is usually pretty cool, but the last few nights have been WAY cool! It has been so bright outside that we have been able to call puffs (incoming wind) at two in the morning. Usually, it's too dark to do that. The moon is full and behind a thin layer of clouds, so we've been able to see the horizon better than usual, which makes sailing at night easier.

Second, the most awesome thing happened on Friday afternoon. Trevor, Brian and I are on deck when we see a sail in the distance. We'd been sailing for almost 48 hours at that point; so seeing another boat is definitely a topic of conversation. After some speculation, Brian went to check the AIS and saw that it was 100-footer COMANCHE. Within the hour, they'd passed us within a mile and disappeared in the horizon in front of us. That was less than 24 hours after their start. They'd already sailed just about 500 miles. As I write this, they're just about to Hawaii- maybe within a day.

Third, and this I think is probably the most important, we are halfway there- both in terms of distance sailed and geographically. To celebrate, Brian made us Pad Thai. It was delicious. If any of the Tiger Pants crew are reading this - mine are about to go on in celebration of this accomplishment- I'm sure there will be photos.

Today was also exciting because we got passed closely by Chim Chim just after we repaired a sail (Trick, if you're reading this, you definitely owe Brian and Matt a beer for their excellent mid-ocean TOP batten pocket repair) and backed down to get something off our keel. We've spent most of the day, though, sailing fast and having fun.

We've not seen a lot of trash or sea life, so far. A few flying fish and we smelled a whale the other night. Today, we saw an albatross. Those are cool creatures- and they good luck!

All is well out here on Resolute. The boys are still behaving, mostly. Oh, and if you were wondering, underwear change day exceeded expectations!! - Alli Bell

Day 7- July 11, 2017, 0100
Greetings Resolute fans. It's Monday and we are 1st in class and 4th overall as of this morning’s position report. The two big boats in our class are tough and it looks like the approach to the finish off Diamond Head will be a tricky one weather wise.

We are trending toward the north side of the course for now, but looking to make a left turn south with a favorable shift in the wind. Here we go again on the fine sailing ship Resolute as we find ourselves in the giant killer mode.

For now we are pushing as hard as we can. Alli, too, has moved into the crew boss role as her competitive nature is taking over more each day! We love our Alli Bell. A couple more shout outs... Matt Smith the freeze-dried food is awesome. Second, to my buddy Erik Shampain who could not make the race this time. It's just not the same in the middle of the ocean without you. Thanks for following along. More to come over the next few days. - Tim Fuller- Skipper.   Follow RESOLUTE’s Facebook page here  Follow RESOLUTE’s Transpac blog here

J/125 Raisin Cane from Palm Beach, FLFrank Atkinson’s J/125 RAISIN’ CANE from West Palm Beach, FL
Raisin' Cane's Race Day 2- July 7, 2017, 1900
Raisin' Cane had an issue yesterday that affected their speed for a while. Issue appears to be resolved and they have been steadily gaining speed through out today and are doing their best to catch up. Let’s all send them pleasant thoughts for good wind and increased speed. Not sure how close they were or if Raisin' Cane saw them but Comanche, a 100ft competitor, passed by them earlier today.

Raisin' Cane is now 41 hours into the Transpac and doing OK. Typical early passage bugs and deficiencies are being overcome and conditions aboard are improving as we settle in, shake down, and sort out. It also helps that the wind is drawing aft.

We set our first kite 30 minutes ago and, if your typist's (Joe) collected weather forecast data can be relied upon, we expect to be under spinnakers for the foreseeable future. The deck guys are busy flaking and stowing jibs so I can get away with being brief with this message by passing none of their remarks along. This is good because it is "peppy" at the nav station as it is everywhere on board."

Raisin' Cane's Day 4- July 9, 2017
Raisin Cane is charging downwind in a deep, cobalt blue. ocean, her A2 running spinnaker, straining at her sheets, skipping from wave to wave in a sailor’s dance till she reaches the sun baked white beaches of Hawaii. Cane’s crew has settled into their hourly watches and daily routines, focusing all their efforts to race across the Pacific. Sailing has been steady with good winds. The fleet is now in the trade winds for the most part, sailing westerly to the Islands with the winds at their back with a little over 1200 miles to go.  Follow Raisin’ Cane here on the Transpac Race boat blogs.

Follow these teams each day and give them your support- Yellow Brick’s YBTracking is providing the hourly updates.  For more Transpac Race sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.