Ever wonder what happened to PlayStation?

4 Jun

PlayStation, adventurer Steve Fossett's 125-foot catamaran, smashed many records just 8-11 years ago, including the 24-hour speed record, the trans-Atlantic record, and the Jules Verne Trophy, circumnavigating in 58 days, 9 hours.

How fast things happen–and how fast boats sail–in this crazy sailing life. I think all of those record have since been broken again, and in the case of the Jules Verne, twice broken, now down to 45 days, 13 hours.

Steve Fossett died when his plane crashed in the Nevada desert in 2007. One of the many record-breaking projects he left behind was his submersisble, designed to take ...

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Hans Klaar Will Sail The Seas Again

16 May

Hans Klaar is an extraordinary sailor, a modern-day Moitessier, who has built and cruised a series of Polynesian-style catamarans over vast swathes of the world's oceans. Early last year his life took a dramatic and tragic turn when he was jailed in South Africa for rape, as my SAILFeed buddy Charlie Doane chronicled. After fighting the charge, Klaar was released in July and began the fight to rebuild his name and rebuild his life.

Naturally,one of the ways for him to do that was to go build a new boat, and set out for the distant horizons. So ...

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GROOTE BEER: Hermann Goering’s Botter Jacht (Not)

7 May

Groote Beer

My association with this vessel dates back to 1992, when I sailed across the Atlantic with Cliff and Ruth Ann Fremstad aboard their Alden schooner Constellation. After we unfortunately lost Constellation in a river in Spain that summer, I was a bit surprised when Cliff and Ruth Ann, who had been living aboard the schooner for several years, announced they would have to move back aboard their other boat. My surprise morphed into amazement when they described it to me and showed me some pix. It was a 52-foot Dutch botter jacht named Groote Beer (or “Great Bear”), which ...

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Matt Rutherford’s Epic Voyage

24 Apr

There are very few voyages these days that truly earn the superlative "epic." Matt Rutherford, an Annapolis sailor, just delivered one. Non-stop, and solo, around the Americas, via the Northwest Passage and Cape Horn. More than 27,000 miles in 310 days. Incredible.

Rutherford arrived in Annapolis over the weekend, and received a hero's welcome:

“Long time, no see,” Rutherford, 31, said into the mike, with the same familiar combination of awkwardness and comedic timing that those who know him best had missed these last 309 days. He was still barefoot, his toenails brown and gnarled, and thick shocks of

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Remembering Loss Living with Sacrifice

22 Apr

Does it say something about sailing or does it say something about journalism that even the New York Times had to look for an Americas Cup tie-in when it reported the tragic deaths of five amateur sailors aboard a keelboat rounding an island at the edge of the Continental Shelf, 27 miles from the nearest point of the planned 2013 Americas Cup course inside San Francisco Bay?

In the last week I have not had a single sailor-conversation that has not turned to the tragedy of losing five souls in the 2012 Farallons Race. For that matter, it came up ...

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How To Raise A Family The Anasazi Way

18 Apr

If you ever find yourself dazed in a Mall, stewing in traffic, or listening to your kid scream about playing more Wii, and wonder what the hell you are doing, then think about James Burwick, who is circumnavigating the globe with his wife and two (very_ young kids on an Open 40 called Anasazi Girl.

He's crossing oceans at high rates of speed and giving his family an experience that is unlike most any other in this harried, technified, 21st Century (course the Bumfuzzles know a thing or two about this, as well).

Anasazi Girl is currently in ...

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Must Reads: Merf Owen On Designing VO70s

5 Apr

Only one out of six of the VO70s on the current leg of the Volvo Ocean Race has managed (or been lucky ebough) to avoid a major breakdown. Nice, PUMA.

First, a quick video summary (and full details of Groupama's breakdown and options are here):

The chaos and catastrophe have been sufficient to induce VOR CEO Knut Frostad to issue a statement of concern. And, naturally, all the breakages have set off the usual armchair designer critics, who have taken to sailing forums across the globe.

To sort it all out, and explain things from the design side, ...

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Inside Artemis

16 Mar

What's up with Artemis? Don't they know that when you play the America's Cup game you are supposed to be paranoid, secretive, and hostile to media efforts to learn anything about your plans and designs? And that you need lots of security goons to shoo inquisitive, photo-snapping journalists away?

Apparently not. Yesterday they distributed pictures of their new AC72 wing. And now we see that they've also allowed CNN Mainsail's Shirley Robertson behind the scenes for a pretty extensive look at their team and progress. The result is three sweet video reports.

For that, they win the inaugural Mariner ...

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“Sharks Are Honest”

14 Mar

Is big-wave surfer, and shark-riding freediver Mark Healey crazy? Or does he know something the rest of us don't?

A little of both, I think, as this video of Healey diving with bull sharks attests. He goes on from the title quote above to say: "People have ulterior motives. I think people are way more dangerous than sharks." Hard to argue with that.

This guy, however, seems more than a little crazy.

This guy, too.

Follow The Mariner by bookmarking this page. RSS feed is here. Tumblr is here....

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Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea

13 Mar

James Cameron, a film-maker by profession and an explorer by nature, is going deep. Very deep. Sometime in the coming weeks he'll squeeze into a one-man submersible and dive to the bottom of the Challenger Deep, the deepest known point in the world's oceans. Located in the Mariana Trench, it is almost seven miles down (significantly deeper than Everest is high). It's another world.

Here's Nat Geo on the mission:

Just Tuesday, during testing offPapua New Guinea, Cameron dived deeper than any other human has on a solo mission. Now he aims to become the first

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