This is from the Cinco de Mayo Regatta, a few Fleet 42 guys, Jeff Eisner, Cesar Leyva, and Duane Darling having some fun on the water. Worth taking a look!!! Great job guys!!!
This is from the Cinco de Mayo Regatta, a few Fleet 42 guys, Jeff Eisner, Cesar Leyva, and Duane Darling having some fun on the water. Worth taking a look!!! Great job guys!!!
Well…here we go again!!!
Join us for the Fleet 42 Family Fun Weekend at Roosevelt Lake the weekend of May 21-23, 2016 at Horse Pasture/Bermuda Flats Campground. Some people will be getting there early on the Friday prior to grab as much water front space as possible. I need to know if you are planning on attending this event so we can get a head count of participants. Please let me know as soon as possible by e-mailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
With the warm spring weather, it is time to start thinking about sailing and what better place than at Roosevelt Lake! Join us for this Family Fun Weekend, sponsored by Arizona Multihull Fleet 42 on March 18-20, 2016. This is a loosely-organized weekend of events on and off the water, full of surprises, fun sailing events, possibly a semi-long distance race, maybe a hounds and fox chase, WHATEVER!
We will be meeting at Horse Pasture/Bermuda Flats Campground. Katy and I will try to get there early Friday Morning and get a lot of space next to the water. If you get there before we do, try to get as close as possible to the shore and get lots of space.
We will net be doing a pitch-in dinner on Saturday night, but a campfire will be going so we can all catch up with each other on our activities we all have done this past winter.
Please let me know if are planning on attending this event so I know how much space to try and get.
Looking forward to seeing all of you there!!! What a way to start a new sailing season!!!
Commodore – Fleet 42
By Brian Willess
Border Run 2016 or How I Learned to Love the Tramp
Jim Tomes and I had a great adventure sailing the 2016 Border Run long distance sailboat race from New Port Beach CA to San Diego Harbor CA 1/29-1/30. We’re planning on racing the GT300 this summer and we wanted to get out on the water for a long distance race, this was our trial run. Jim’s very experienced cat sailor and we agreed that Jim would skipper and I would crew.
Logistics and getting on the water
Logistics were a big part of the race for us, mostly because it took a lot of time and included lots of driving in CA traffic. This year the race was held on Friday 1/29, so Thursday we drove from Phoenix to New Port Beach CA. We left early and arrived around Noon local time. We rigged the boat in a pay parking lot behind the American Legion Yacht Club. The Yacht Club allowed us to store the boats on the beach overnight.
As we were rigging we talked about how Lee had done the Harvest Moon Regatta in Texas on the boat with a woman he knew from CO. The Harvest Moon Regatta is much more extreme than what we were about to take on at 150 miles. As we were moving the boat from the parking lot to the beach we saw a couple riggings a Hobie 21 SE on the street. We stopped to say hi and met Rick and Wendy. Wendy was the woman who sailed with Lee in the Harvest Moon, what a small world. Rick and Wendy helped us get to boat over the curb onto the beach; we put the boat into the water and I paddled it around a short doc to the beach where the boat would spend the night. We helped Rick and Wendy finish rigging their boat and helped them get it onto the beach next to our boat.
The plan was to move the truck, trailer, and all our personal gear to the take out point on Shelter Island San Diego Harbor. Long story short we finally got to Shelter Island. We left the sails with the boat, but had all our other sailing gear with us. We would catch a ride with a friend from Carlsbad to New Port Beach Friday morning for the race. We quickly thought through logistics and realized that we needed to leave our suitcases with the truck so that we would have all our personal items when we finished the race. So we put on our sailing clothes, Jim in his swim trunks and t-shirt, me in my dry suit under-garment AKA the onesie. We drove to Carlsbad where we had warm beds for the night and the company of friends. The truck, trailer, and all our personal stuff was left in San Diego, we were committed to sailing the whole way. This became the theme for the race, we were committed!
Friday morning we were up early and my friend from Carlsbad, Sherri, drove us to the venue, Jim in his swim shorts and me in my onesie. We decided to stop for coffee and show off our cool outfits in public, we would never see these people again, let’s have some fun with it!
Let’s Go Racing
The race organizers arranged for a power boat to tow the two beach cats out of the harbor to the start line. We tied the boats together and left the beach a little after 9:30 AM. It was a couple of miles to get out of the harbor and the tow was essential. We looked at all the nice homes and huge boats and wondered what it would be like to live that lifestyle. As we got closer to the Pacific we got our first look at the Mighty Merloe, a high tech, full foiling 60′ trimaran sail boat. What a hot boat! We released from our tow line before we reached the start and started to get comfortable on the boat. We did a few drive-bys on the Merloe and snapped lots of pictures.
We had a great start, crossing the line first with one trimaran upwind from us. No sooner had we crossed the line we saw the Merloe coming fast to our downwind side. They rolled us like we were standing still within 3-4 feet of catching our leeward rigging on their windward pontoon which was ~7′ above the water, it was cool! Video of the start can be seen here: https://youtu.be/IM60DPP__lc
The winds were not in our favor, we were supposed to have a downwind run the whole way but instead we had light winds 3-5mph and the wind was directly from San Diego Harbor. We would have to beat into the wind the whole way 70+ miles.
We had a couple of good battles early on, one very nice monohull that reminded me of the volvo racing yachts. We were able to swap places a few times before they peeled off for the Dana Point course finish flying the spinnaker. We also were able to overtake a Corsair F27 trimaran. It took us a while but we finally passed him. The skipper told us about potential places to bail if the wind got any worse, we were committed to San Diego! Not long after we passed the F27 the wind got really low and we were barely moving. At this point we had been on the water ~6 hours and only covered ~14 miles, and we had ~60 to go still. The F27 and one other trimaran decided to abandon the race and head to the party at Dana Point. Both boats motored over to us and asked us if we wanted a tow to Dana Point. Jim and I discussed sailing through the night, if we continued it would be a long night. We declined the tows, we were committed to San Diego! Besides, all our clothes, trunk and trailer are all in San Diego, I guess I could have partied in my onesie.
At this point we could see a few boats off in the distance but nothing close. We keep sailing, trying to get as much boat speed as possible and pinching as high as possible to try and make VMG. Neither Jim or I had much night sailing experience so as the sun got lower we enjoyed the sunset and prepared for the night. We both strapped flashlights to our PFDs, put some light on the digital compass so we could track our heading, and turned on our running lights; we sailed into the darkness. We also put on stylish beanie caps and extra layers to help keep us warm thought the night. My biggest concern about the race was keeping warm. It had just gotten dark and we were both getting comfortable with sailing in the dark and I decided to lay down on the tramp to try and get some sleep. I had my head close to the front beam and a dolphin breached right under the spinnaker bag 18″ from my head, scared me to death! Of course Jim proclaimed that it was a shark and that the sharks like to eat at night, thanks Jim!
At this point we could see the navigation lights of a boat far ahead of us. Jim was on a mission to catch her. We were slowly gaining on the boat when we got a favorable wind shift and were able to fly the spinnaker and sail on a direct course to the finish, our boat speed doubled and we started to gain on the large monohull very quickly. As we got close we could see them putting flashlights on all the sails, why was this boat catching us so quickly? We must be doing something wrong! We came along side of her, the SugarLips. The crew called out to us and asked what we were? We told them we are a NACRA 20 beach cat. They could not believe we were out there. The skipper on SugarLips made sure to tell us that they were an 18 ton vessel, so it only made sense that we were faster, whatever. We kept the spin up and left them in the dust! Good times!!!! We flew the spin for a couple of hours and covered ~20 miles, without this push we may not have finished before the cutoff. We were pretty happy with ourselves, we were sailing more than 10 miles offshore in the Pacific, in the dark, flying the spinnaker. No fear, let’s do this! Committed!
We continued to sail into the darkness, we could see lights to the West but nothing towards San Diego. After a few hours we were able to see the night glow with city lights, that must be San Diego. This whole time we’re looking at the GPS and it telling us we have 28 – 42 hours to our destination, oh my! We were committed, but if we got in after 2:00 PM Saturday we would DNF, that would not be acceptable, we kept sailing. The moon finally came out and it helped us keep a steady heading and provided pretty good light for us to see the boat and sails. Jim was at the helm most of the night. I skippered for ~30 minutes and Jim was able to catch a power nap. I was really having a hard time staying awake. As Jim napped I was nodding off but kept going since I could hear Jim sleeping. It was not long until Jim just jumped up like he had just woken up from a 4 hour nap. I’m not sure how he does that.
At one point in the night I was trying to sleep and we heard whales breaking the surface for air. We did not see them, but they sounded like they were close, maybe less than 50′ from the boat. It was exciting and scary at the same time. We never laid eyes on a whale but we heard that the Grays were running and heard reports from other boats and saw a few whale watching boats zipping around looking for them.
San Diego and the Sugar Sue
We finally start getting closer to San Diego, we can see the lights! Far up ahead we see another monohull, the Sugar Sue. This was a hot racing boat. 39′, huge sail plan, and an experienced crew that was not happy to see this little beach cat gaining on them. This battle lasted for the remainder of the race. As we approached La Jolla we were pretty close to Suger Sue. She tacked away from shore, we debated why she tacked so soon, but who knows. We went closer to shore so that after our tack we would be upwind to her. We went deeper and tacked. This area of the coast has lots of kelp beds and one theory was that they knew something about the kelp. Well it did not take long before we found out why they tacked so early, lobster pots. Not just a few, but a few hundred lobster pots spaced out every 50 yards or so. Jim did a great job keeping an eye out and missing all but one! We caught a lobster pot and we stopped almost immediately. I pulled the daggers and cleared the boat. We were moving again. We encountered a few more miss-steps while perusing Sugar Sue. From picking up kelp to dropping a running light and having to make 4 passes to pick it up, we never got right next to The Sugar Sue. We did manage to get ahead of her by sailing a better course. We had the pleasure of hanging out with the crew of the Sugar Sue after the race and learned that our presence on the water lit a fire under the crew. They thought we were playing with them, catching up, then falling back and sailing in circles. They thought we were just showing how much faster we were!
The next battle we faced was getting around Point Loma. Point Loma is the Northern point to the channel entrance for San Diego Harbor. It was still dark as we got closer to the point. There are huge thick kelp beds close to the point so we stayed out pretty far, 1-2 miles. This part of the race was very challenging since we had a few factors against us. The tide from the Harbor was heading out, we had very light wind that was shifting 40 degrees every 40 seconds, the waves got very large, ~6′-7′ trough to peak, and we had about 20 minutes of sleep. When the boat was at the top of the wave we get into wind and power-up, and in the trough we lost all power. I think we worked to get around the point for at least 2-hours, maybe 3. It was depressing to look at the point because it seemed like we did not make any ground this whole time. The Sugar Sue had gone out further, but they were also having issues. It’s now daylight but a little foggy, we can see ships entering the harbor. We fight our way to the channel and go a little further so that we can sail the lay line to the finish. We tack towards the finish line and have a strong starboard tack the whole way. We made it and it was ~8:30 AM or so!
I’ll forever call this race epic! Usually when I think about some of the extreme sailing I’ve done it’s the strong winds and high speeds that make it extreme. This race was different, it was all about dedication to the finish, fighting the good fight, and positive attitudes. Jim and I both had the best attitudes throughout the entire race. We knew it was going to be long, we knew it was going to be slow, but we hunkered down and did what it took to get to the end. If we had been negative about any one aspect of the challenges we faced it could have been a miserable time.
By the time we hit the ramp at Shelter Island we had been on the water for over 24-hours. We took the boat out of the water, put the sails away and checked into our hotel across the street. We spent time with the other sailors at the party and enjoyed swapping stories and perspectives from the other boats that we battled. It turned out that we inspired them as much as they inspired us, good times!
There were 25 boats racing the San Diego Course, only 5 finished before the cut off time. Most bailed out at Dana Point. The only boat that beat us across the line was the Mighty Merloe, the 60′ foiling trimaran. We drove home with first place in the Beach Cats category, first place in the Double Hand Category, the perpetual Beach Cat Trophy, and the respect from all the other sailors. All in all a great time.
Many thanks to Sherri Waite for putting us up and driving us to the start, and Jim for being a great skipper with a great attitude. I can’t wait for the GT300!
Good day sailors,
Here is my write up of the best Governors Cup Ever! (Because I won!)
A bunch of us started off by meeting up Friday night to all hang out at the campground. We had some great sailing stories and lots of laughs of sailing days past. The trash talk was flowing as all of us were hoping to take the cup and confidence among the sailors was greatly exaggerated around the fire. One thing we all had in common was the concern on the wind forecast. It looks to be a floater, lets all hope wind finder is wrong. We all tucked ourselves into bed and not a breeze was to be had the entire night. We woke to the same, no wind at all. Then out of nowhere the answer to our prayers was answered, WIND!!. Wait lots and lots of wind? The forecast was slow so I had no crew. My thoughts of having the light boat advantage quickly turned to I sure hope I don’t flip.
Well the wind was holding out at the start line. We cat sailors buzzed around zipping in and out of the mono-hulls as they started on their adventure leaving us at the dam on their way up the lake. Wow, a lot of those boats sure were far ahead. I was still in caution mode as the wind was blowing and I sure did not want to go over. I was getting worried as I tried to compare boat speed prior to our start. I could not keep up with those darn I20’s with boat speed. Then there was this Nacra 5.8 that I’ve never sailed against before. Those guys were blowing me away and I could not catch them. There was the P19 looking so fast and always a threat. The hobies were now off and flying down the course. A p16 was practically out of sight before my start time approached. Fred comes booking in on the H18 a little late but then is just gone. My start is getting close, Just me and those 4 darn I20’s left at the line. As my time approaches I hit the line moving fast and headed up the lake, I have just over two minutes before the rain of I20 terror approaches.
Wow, the wind is got me a bit over powered so pull hard on the out-hull, max out the down-hull, under rotate, and I’m still having to pinch to keep under control. I finess the tiller keeping my hull just above the water and am trapped out to the front cross bar to keep the bows down. Two minutes go by and I watch in horror as the freight train of 20’s rains on my parade. Within a matter of minutes after they started I was over taken and out sailed. Man those guys are all fast! Now here I sit in last place over powered and out of ideas. My visions of governors cup glory are fading fast! So I decide to not look at the other boats and focus on boat speed. My bows are down, the hull is riding at the perfect height, my tiller movements are smooth and I have a perfect line to the first island.
Almost to the north islands my spirits are reawakened, my high angle may have paid off. Brett with all wisdom decides to sail to the wrong island, Woo Hoo I,m now one boat down. My angle seemed to have made good on Manny, two down. But man Brad and Brian are so fast and still ahead. I round the first Island and make my way to the second. What do I do now, Wind is softer but man the spin will be a handful. Brad and Brian both have theirs up so I have no choice. I pull the chute. A little bit of crazy shifting wind by the island then I get dialed in. Single handed trapped out with the spin is always intimidating. I’m sailing well, the wind is perfect. I’ve got the angle on Brian and approaching a bunch of sailors rounding the south island. Brad, Johnathan, and Victor are all there. I pull down the spin and fight my way through the passage crowded with sailors. I decide to stay to the east, hoping that I again can make a good angle to the north islands.
Heading north I have now passed many boats and now only have Fred, two H16’s and a P16 as far as cats in front, but they are way up there! Lets see what the Lake Pleasant wind crap shoot has in store for us now. Well fists lets just turn the wind off, not slow, off. I see everyone just kind of floating and i’m going nowhere. The boats to the north are just bobbing and the boats to the south just crawling. I can see small patches of wind in either direction but I have nothing. Then the sight I could have only hoped for, Wind From the South! Good wind too! I watch as the boats behind me fill their sails and the spinnakers come back out to play. The mid day wind 180 has come! I sit waiting in anticipation and the water darkens behind me showing me that sweet wind treat. I pull out the spin and with that my grin, here it comes and I have the perfect angle. Like a switch the wind fills my sails and accelerates my boat up the lake. I’m moving now! Wait now I’m not, I was too fast and was sailing beyond the wind line, crap. What do I do now, Lets sail a lower angle and give me a hotter line to the island. It worked! The last group of boats are in sight coming up to the north island.
My boat is now cooking, spin out, trapped out, and I have rights as I mix it up with the rest of the fleet on a port tack. I drive through the middle of the group and have a super hot angle. I’m living up to the boat name as I get closer to the Island. Time to jibe, slid in off the trap, de-hyper-rotate, loosen the main, slide over the blocks, pull the main, re-hyper-rotate, pull the spin sheets, trap out, and set course all in one breath. The Whoop sound as the spin fills up and powers the boat to speed. Perfect line to the island and I’m passing the remaining boats. I take my last jibe and island to island line is a super hot one. Again the spin is powered up, trapped out making those oh so smooth figure s’s as I hold the hull just above the lake. I,m pulling away and getting a good lead on the others. My mind is now racing, I could win this!
As a douse the spin and set course up down the lake I focus on a great line and great boat speed. I look back and Brad is still within striking distance. That boat is sure fast up wind and I am not out of the woods yet. The wind is up and I’m trapped out again all the way to the front cross bar. My arm is stretched to the max wishing my tiller was longer to keep the leeward bow deep and the windward bow above the water. I’m afraid to look back and focus forward. I’m approaching the east side of the lake and running out of water. Time to make my tack. I slide in off the trap again, make my turn and back out on the wire. The sun is in my eye and I can’t tell where the end of the island is. Did I tack too late, do I head up or fall off a little, I can’t tell. Brad is now is now in my view as I look up the lake headed down to the last island. I still have him but he is still within striking distance. As I get closer to the west side I can not see the island markings through the glare of the sun. I have a perfect lay line! I make my last tack and head around the island. The wind is good and I’m not sure to run the spin or not. If I do I could be over powered by the hot angle of the finish line, If I don’t Brad could power up behind me and take it. I pull the chute and hope for the best. I’m pooped and feeling it in my arms. The angel is a little hot for my spin but I power through it twice popping up a little high risking the capsize. I look back to see I am going to make it if I just don’t go over. I slide back in from the trap and ease out on the spin and sail my way over the line with Tom there to record my victory.
Holy Crap, I’ve just won!
I head back to shore to dismantle the boat and enjoy the victory with all of my great friends. I am blessed to have such great people in my life and to be able to enjoy the great sport of sailing with them. Time to cook dinner for all my friends. This time it’s gumbo! I’ve never made it before so I hope it turns out well. 30 minutes later a huge pot, a bunch of bowls and a group of cold hungry sailors await. As Brian would say, “Winner, Winner, Gumbo Dinner!” Lets eat. Now judging from the huge now empty pot and how many went back for seconds I think I did all right. The perfect way to close out a perfect day.
Thank you to all my friends and fellow sailors who were there to make it so special, and to those who missed it I wish you could have been there. I hope this gives you a little feeling of what it was like on my boat and it fires you up to make it next year!
Jim Tomes on Raisin Hull
Here is a video the Brian Willess put together recapping this years Rocky Point Challenge. Thanks Brian!!!
Good Saturday Everyone!!
We had a great time last weekend at the Rocky Point Challenge. We had 14 boats sailing in the event. That is the most boats we have had in a very long time! Thanks to all of you who were able to make it to Mexico….and to those of you who didn’t make it..well..there is another event next weekend. The last Family Fun Weekend for 2015.
We will be at Roosevelt Lake next weekend..October 23-25, 2015. We will be at Horse Pasture/Bermuda Flats campgrounds right next to the water. I will get there as soon as I can on Friday, October 23rd and grab as much shoreline as possible. If you get there before me, please do the same. If you need a map of where the campgrounds are located, please contact me.
No pot-luck dinner this time…just bring your stuff to the lake and get some sailing in.
Let me know if you are planning on attending so I can keep an eye out for you.
ALL WATERCRAFT WELCOME !
With the warm spring weather, it is time to start thinking about sailing and what better place than at Roosevelt Lake! Join us for this family fun weekend, sponsored by Arizona Hobie Fleets 66 and 514 and Arizona Multihull Fleet 42. This is a loosely-organized weekend of events on and off the water, full of surprises, fun sailing events, possibly a semi-long distance race, maybe a hounds and fox chase, WHATEVER!
We will be at Horse Pasture/Bermuda Flats campgrounds right next to the water. Katy and I will get there as soon as we can on Friday, April 24th and grab as much shoreline as possible. If you get there before us, please do the same. If you need a map of where the campgrounds are located, please contact Scott Agan.
ENTER THE ANNUAL FLEET 66 CHILI COOK OFF CONTEST!
Saturday night, after the events of the day, bring your favorite chili to the judging area with a serving spoon. For those not bringing chili, please pot luck with condiments, crackers, tortillas, shredded cheese, hors d’oeuvres, desert, etc. to share. Everyone can dig in after the judging. Prizes will be awarded for Best in Traditional, Nontraditional, and Vegetarian categories. Fleet 42 will provide all the necessary eating utensils, plates, bowls, cups, and napkins.
Please let me know if you are attending and what time and date you are planning on arriving. This way I can keep a lookout for you.
For further information, call Scott Agan, 480-540-5634 or email@example.com
I just ran across this video by Ken Bruce. 2014 Rocky Point Challenge. Why did I not know about this?