Thursday, July 31, 2008

BREAKING NEWS - Welcome Home Party


Passepartout, her owner Pete Shainin & crew of three (Frank Shriver, Kris Moa, Clay Adams) who raced to Maui from Victoria ares expected to arrive in Anacortes (Cap Sante D-19) near noon on Saturday August 2 from her delivery from Lahaina, Maui.

A dockside welcoming party is being planned by Jerry Van der Veen, Ken Van Gasbeck, and Marlene Bolster. BYOB if desired. This crew has had no ice, cold beer, fresh fruit or vegetables for some time (nor have they seen any women, so beware!).

This weekend is the Anacortes Arts Festival... so for a break from all the art all AYC members, friends, and guests are invited to join us on the dock. The AYC clubhouse will be opened, should the weather request, for an alternate location

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Race Week Pictures...

The pictures from Race Week are starting to trickle in - here are two that you might find interesting...

This first one is of a Sierra 26 - from what we heard they were heading back to the barn after racing and didn't pay attention! They were racing the next day, minus all their personal gear that wasn't attached to the boat!

This next one is a short video compliation produced by Joy Brown based on her activities on the water - check it out!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Whidbey Island Race Week in Review...

For those of you who couldn't be there - here is a great video wrap-up of Race Week put together by the crew of Boss. Check it out...

Friday, July 25, 2008

Congratulations to the winners!

AYC was proudly represented at the Whidbey Island Race week awards ceremony with both Teddy Bear and Schussboomer picking up the third place hardware in their divisions! With nearly a dozen races spread over five days battling sun, wind and current both skippers have a lot to be proud of. Also of note Pangaea beat out Skookumchuck for the coveted broken bone award. Finally my lovely wife skippered the Lowly Worm to the highest score of any all female crew.

Copyright © 2007 Photos by Todd

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Wednesday Racing in Penn Cove

In cased you missed it, the Whidbey Island Race Week fleet had a great day in Penn Cove this Wednesday. The first stop was for latte's at the Coupeville Dock, followed by some drifting, then back to Coupeville for some more drinks, followed by even more drifting! Eventually after about three (3) hours the race committee called the whole thing off!

The kids were getting a little noisy so we decided to give them a time out until they settled down! It is amazing how a little hang time will quiet them down...

PS - we are professionals, don't try this at home!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Racing Cancelled

Traditionally AYC has not held Wednesday night racing during Whidbey Race Week, so no racing tonight. Tune in next week for the final Wednesday night points race; Wallys Tours IV. Next month's Summer Fun Series will be hosted by your favorite Commodore Chuck T! Please contact Wendy Gray if you would enjoy helping out around the BBQ or just slicing a few tomatoes (TOMAHTO's whatever). We have a ton of new members, come join the fun renew past acquaintances and make the new members feel welcome. For you newbies the best way to endear yourself to the membership and understand what our club is all about is to come volunteer to help out! On another note we will have information about our first ever Pirate Camp coming up in August to teach kids how to sail.... To see how your local club members are faring check out Whidbey Race Week on the web!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Hear ye, hear ye

25 boats turning out for Wednesday nights! Wow what a season, plenty of wind, current, and lightning. You don't have to be a racer to come join the fun on Wednesday nights. Kudos to all who have pitched in and helped out from RC duty to cleaning up afterwards. The Wednesday night program benefits the whole club and helps pay for things like the Commodores Ball, all members picnic, and dishsoap. If you're a member and not actively volunteering for something here is your chance to become a part of your club. By the way AYC has traditionally not held races during Whidbey Race Week (122 boats this year!) So no racing July 23rd!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Northern Century Preliminary Results...

The Preliminary Results of the Northern Century (aka Iron Man) are just in - local boats dominate!

1st - Express 37
2nd - Stranger
3rd - Schussboomer
4th - Endurance

All other boats retired - which tells you how difficult the race was.

The Express finished about an hour ahead of the pack after taking a huge gamble short tacking the beach down Saanich Pennisula. The remaining three were neck & neck heading out to Hein Bank and finished within minutes of each other at Skyline - it couldn't get any closer, especially after 100 miles of very difficult sailing!

More on the race later when I recover...for now, here is a picture from the start...

Friday, July 11, 2008

Northern Century...

For those of you who haven't heard - there is a new 100 mile sailing event going on this weekend. The event starts at 7:00pm Friday night at Cap Sante with the course being from here to Point Roberts, Hein Bank bouy, and then finishing up at Skyline. If the wind is cooperative most boats should finish sometime Saturday evening.

The interesting thing about this event is that it is double-handed! Our area will be represented by at least three boats - Thumper, Schussboomer and Stranger. To add an interesting twist, Schussboomer has a tracking device on board and you can follow their progress (or lack thereof) here...

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Last Day at Sea - Passepartout Day 18

Here is the latest report just in from Captain Pete and the crew of Passepartout...

114 miles to the finish line. The last two days have been very nice cruising days. Mostly sunny with occaisional squalls. The squalls bring good wind but theyqalso bring rain so the set of a scramble to get the hatches closed. Right now it is 78 F on deck and 87 F below - that is why we want the hatches open.

We had the last of our eggs for breakfast this morning. We are looking forward to a dock party for breakfast tomorow. Our ETA at the finish line is 0800 Hawaiian Standard Time. We are looking forward to seeing all the friends we made in Lahaina two years ago and especailly the Becklunds.

In 2006 Patti Link made a great CD of photos of all the boats finishing and thier parties. I hope she does that again. It really was special. See what happens, Patti? You do somehting nice for people then you never get out of it.

Right now we have 13 kts of wind from ENE and we are making 6.5 ktd SOG under a big spinnaker. There were several suggestions about 0700 this morning that we keep going after Maui - after all Tahiti isn't far so I guess our attitudes aren't all bad. Clay continues to steal as much helm time form everyone else as he can. I wouldn't be surprised if he turns off the autopilot on his watch to save electricity. Marlene says she will miss cooking on an angle and our sunset dinner cruises.

I think we have the watermaker working properly but now the oven doesn't light. If it isn't one thing it is another.

It is important to have everything working because we are counting on a short turn around then sailing back to Anacortes. The weather looks considerbly more challenging going home than it did coming. We can use our engine and the autopilot going home but we only carry enough fuel for about 700 miles of motoring and the great circle distance is just over 2300 miles. So, there will be a lot of sailing wind or not. Pete, Clay, Kris and Frank will bring the boat back.

This is our last status report. Thanks to all of you who have been watching us and reading about us. I hope you had as much fun as we are having - without the barfing, the gales and the 87 F below deck but also withoukt Marlene's food, good wine and good conversation. Both the race and the delivery home are adventures that will stick with us forever.

Pete & Crew

Monday, July 07, 2008

The Sage Continues - Passepartout Day 16

This is just in from Captain Pete and crew on Passepartout - they are 358 miles from Maui, but the wind is light. If you want to track their progess and that of the rest of the fleet you can use this link. Read on...

The wind was great for most of the last day - 15 to 22 kts behind us so we could carry our largest spinnaker. We coverd quite a bit of distance - 358 miles to finish. But, the wind turned very light at the beginning of the last watch (0200 Hawaii Time). Our progress since than has been terrible. The weather charts show 10 kts or less for 1000 miles North and East of Hawaii lasting at least for the next 4 days. If the charts prove correct we might not finish at all. The race times out at midnight on July 10.

We have had a lure out for most of the trip and we say Mahi Mahi jump last night but we have not caught anyhting. We are prepared with wasabi and saki just in case.

The food is getting down to basics but marlene manged to dish up eggs, cheese, potatoes and bacon all scrambled together for breakfast today. Marlene is still doing an amazing job considering what she has to work with. We are on our last roll of paper towels. There is still plenty of rum and wine. We are keeping the water full with only one pump but we have to run it very often. We are having trouble keeping the refrigerator as cold as we would like but the freezer is staying very cold. We could have brought ice cream and still be eating it today. It looks like the refrigerator top (the door) will get new weather stripping in Maui.

The crew is getting along great. We now know enough about each other to make much more clever jokes than earlier in the trip.

The only depressing part is the lack of any wind. Since the dead zone surrounds Maui there is no navigating that will fix the problem.

Pete & Crew

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Passepartout Status Report - Day 14

We just received this update from Passepartout and thought we would pass it along...

We made lousy progress on day 13. The wind was a little stronger than it had been but still very light. Turicum and Seeker both gained on us. The three days of light wind have dashed our hopes of beating Strum on corrected time and have made our chances of beating Turicum on corrected time pretty dim. It also gives Seeker a real chance to beat us on corrected time. That is all pretty depressing for us.

But, the wind has picked up smartly (13 to 15 Kts) and we are on a very nice spinnaker run. It looks like we will be able to hold this course almost to the finish. 589 miles to go as of this writing. The crew is getting along well - there is quite a bit of laughing and not very much arguing. That Spanish red I entioned last night is especailly good. We are working on a case of that. It hs pretty much turned the entire crew into wine drinkers.

We have used the spinnkaer so little on this race that we forgot we had a spinnaker net. After the second wrap (1 to 1-1/2 hours and a lot of hard work to unwrap the spionnaker each time) we remebered the net. It has saved us from a third wrap already.

As I write this the crew on deck is reminising about the gale. They now can say they were on the foredeck in a 44kt gale (That is actually just about to become a storm). It is great to have bragging rights. I don't think anyone wants to repeat the experience though.

We just turned the boiler on for the first time since the "Fix It" operation. It works! Thanks Fred for the email help. Right now it is 75 on deck and sunny (6:35PM Hawaii time) and 84 down below. For us northwesterners who think 65 is warm a shower sounds pretty good.

Pete & Crew

Saturday, July 05, 2008

July 4th at Sea - Passepartout Status Report

For those of you that have been following Passepartout - here is a report just in from Pete approximately 690 miles from Maui --

It is the 4th of July, one of my favorite holidays and the 13th day of the race. We have no fireworks aboard and limited our celebration to an extra bottle of wine - a 2005 Almansa from Compass wines. I have not had this before. Doug assured me I would like it. He was right. It is a very heavy Spanish wine. The rest of the crew seems to agree.

Things have improved a little today. I got the bilge pump fixed. It was the easiest and the most important thing to fix so I tackled that first. The duck bill valves were worn out. A simple replacement did the job. This afternoon I tackled the boiler. Access is extremely difficult. It is located just forward of the transmom and aft of the aft cabin - just above the steering quadrant. It is difficult to get close to the unit with my body and it is difficult to see anyhting becaue then my eyes are so close to the screws I am trying to turn. I got Kris to help. He is younger and stronger. Now the unit fires and cycles as it is suppopsed to. We arejust short circuited a number of control sensors to get it to start the first time. Now it seems to run with no short circuiting required. Maybe fuel built up in the boiler because of heel or speed. When we go fast we build up quite a substantial stern wave which covers the boiler exhaust. Maybe that prevented it form firing and the sensors were sensing the extra fuel and preventing it from firing. We will see how that goes in the future. After all, we all want to look presentable for the dock party in Lahaina so we all need our hot showers.

Our competative situation has changed dramatically for the worse in the last two days. Strum found 20 kts of wind and expected to finish by now. They owe us 4 days and 9 hours so we must finish in 4 days and 9 hours or they will take first overall. We have 687 miles to the finish. Is it doable? It is possible but it will not be easy. We need to be on our speed every minute and we need lucky wind.

Turicum is a worse problem. They are in our class. They owe us 17 -1/2 hrs. As of the roll call this morning they were 120 miles closer to Lahaina than we were. That puts them about 18 hours ahead of us. If we can't beat Strum and we can't close that gap we miss first overall and first in our class. In other words we get feathers for dinner instead of chicken.

This morning we put up the symetrical spinnaker and changed to a course of 230M. We have been able to maintain about 5 kts all day. That is a big improvement from yesterday. Our optimum course to Maui is 219M so we are westing. Turicum is west of us and has been reporting much better wind (and eating our lunch in distance made good). The weather charts do not show the difference but the pattern of highs makes the difference believable. As of 2300 PDT (0600 UTC 5 July) We changed the light wind spinnaker sheets for the heavy wind sheets (3/18"Samson Vectran for 7/16" Samson Warp Speed). We now have 13 kts behind us and we are making 6.2 SOG.

Today was a much better day than yesterday but we have far to go and a very uncertain outcome.

Thank you for all the encouraging emails. We needed them after yesterday.

Pete & Crew

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Thar She Blows...

Speaking from experience, one of the biggest fears of every mariner is an onboard fire. Given that, how would you feel if your cargo was a load of fireworks?

Here is the MV Hanjim Pennsylvania on route to Hamburg from Singapore when a fire started below decks and spread to the cargo containers...

Quite a show, but not a good time!

4th of July Raft-Up...

For those of you that are interested, we will be having a no-host 4th of July raft up in Fidalgo Bay to watch the fireworks starting around 8:00 to 8:30pm. The tide will be in so we should be able to safely anchor close to the firing line.

The first one there gets to pick the spot...

The current weather report for the 4th is as follows - A 30 percent chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 67. South southeast wind 6 to 10 mph becoming west northwest - not perfect, but we will take what we can get. Hopefully it will be better than the being out in the storm we had last night!

Hope to see you there...

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Breaking News - Half Way Party

This report just came in from the intrepid Passepartout and Captain Pete from somewhere in the Pacific halfway between here and Hawaii -

We had our 1/2 way party at noon today. Andy, what a great box. I recognize many of the faces but I wish I knew more of the bodies! The music is great - especially "I'm not trash but I 'm not first class." It fits our American values.

It is 1072 miles to the finish line. We have 18 kts of wind on the starboard beam and we are doing 8 kts SOG. We have 9 days and 12 hours before the race times out. The high west of Maui could move east in the next few days and surround Hwaii with the same wind Strum is experiencing right now (none). If that happens it is possible that no boats will finish. What a terrible ending to a great race that would be.

I just plotted the latest positon reports (day 10). It is obvious that we cannot take any competitor lightly. Seeker is still the big threat but Turicum is trying to do us like we are trying to do Seeker. We need every 1/10th of a knot we can get.

The seas are down to 2-1/2 meters. That is a blessing.

Pete & Crew