July 15, 2014 – The breeze is on and many of the fifty-five boats racing in the 2014 Pacific Cup are posting double-digit speeds and 200-nautical-mile-plus days. At this pace, Kaneohe Bay could be welcoming the first finisher as early as this Friday, July 18.
Venture, a Jeanneau 49 skippered by Michael Chobotov and leading the Holo Holo Cruising Division, has the bit in her teeth again and is starting to smell the Hawaiian plumeria with less than 600 nautical miles to go. She’ll want to keep an eye on the rear-view mirror as Invisible Hand, a Reichel/Pugh 63 skippered by Frank Slootman, is lit up and gaining fast at 16+ knots. If things stay at this pace, the Hand, which won its division in the 2013 Transpac, will be the first to enjoy Kaneohe Yacht Club mai-tais.
Moore 24 Snafu continues to dominate the ‘Iwi Doublehanded Division, with Blade Runner and Green Buffalo within striking distance. Meanwhile, in the Kolea Doublehanded Division, Wolfpack has the pedal to the metal, posting a 219-nautical-mile day – one mile less than California Condor. Awesome speed for this 30-foot boat!
Azure continues to lead the Alaska Airlines Division, with Back Bay and California Girl in hot pursuit. Green Buffalo has taken the lead in the Cal 40 drag race, while Azure, California Girl and Green Buffalo stand 3rd, 4th and 6th in the PHRF overall standings.
The leads for the Weems & Plath, Matson and Sonnen BMW divisions have changed within the past twenty-four hours. Sailing in the Weems & Plath Division, Free Bowl of Soup had a ‘souper’ day, posting a 202nm day in the last twenty-four hours to take the lead from Sweet Okole. This is the most competitive division in the race with only twelve hours separating the first boat from the last. In the Matson Division, Encore also had a great day, posting 196nm. Hamachi lit the afterburner with a 246nm day to move in front of Swazik in the Sonnen BMW Division; the top seven boats in this division are all in the hunt.
In the Latitude 38 fleet – the race’s fastest boats – Pyewacket, Roy Disney’s Andrews 68 and the sole Hawaii-based boat in the race, continues her leadership of the division as well as rating/overall dominance; both the Alameda, CA based Invisible Hand (Reichel/Pugh 63) and the Melbourne, Australia based Scarlett Runner (Reichel/Pugh 52) posted 300nm days while weaving their way through the fleet.
Tomorrow’s weather forecast suggests that the boats north of the rhumb line will see more breeze.
This article was syndicated from BLUE PLANET TIMES