Banque Pop Smashes Circumnav Record

9 Jan

45 Days, 13 Hours, 42 Minutes, 53 Seconds. 

That's all the time it took for the 131-foot trimaran to circle the globe non-stop under sail, at an average speed of (c'est ridicule!) of 26.5 knots (almost 3 days faster than previous record-holder Groupama 3). It could have been even faster, possibly sub-43 days, if they hadn't been slowed down on the approach to Cape Horn and had to sail halfway to New York to skirt the Azores High as they asended the Atlantic toward the finish.

Banque Pop now owns the Triple Crown of ocean speed sailing: the Jules ...

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The SLIVER Project

9 Jan
sliver sheathed.JPG 

There is probably no greater compliment a yacht designer can receive than being asked to design a new yacht for a friend.

When I was a kid I loved to walk the docks down at the Shilshole Bay Marina. This was back in the day before they began putting locks on the gates. I would take a sketch pad with me and stop and sketch various design details that appealed to me. I think I was 15 years old at the time, before I had a driver’s license but I’d get from Mercer Island to Ballard mostly on foot. ...

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Commerson’s Dolphins Video

6 Jan

 

 

This video shows the only friends we made on the Patagonian coast.

This pod of Commerson's Dolphins stuck with us through thick and thin for hundreds of miles of sailing. They are the cutest of all cetaceans at about five feet long. Most dolphins/porpoises swim excitedly off your bow, sometimes for hours, but if you stop the boat they lose interest quickly and drift off. No so with our friends the Commerson's Dolphins. When the weather got nasty we hove too, as we did in this video, and they hung out in the slick we left to windward…for hours. ...

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MATT RUTHERFORD: East of Cape Horn

6 Jan

Matt Rutherford

Editor’s note: Matt Rutherford, currently sailing solo non-stop around the Americas aboard a very small boat, snuck around Cape Horn this morning. Here’s an update I received from a buddy of his, Andy Schell, who maintains a blog at Father & Son Sailing.


It’s round Cape Horn we all must go, Bring ’em down;

Arms all stiff to the ice and snow, Bring ’em down;

Oh, rock and roll me over boys, Bring ’em down;

And get this damn job over boys, Bring ’em down.

Matt Rutherford finished his blog post, which he uploaded via sat phone to ...

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“Punched In The Head”

5 Jan

Banque Pop's Brian Thompson, with a little insight into what sailing at 35 knots is like:

The speed of this boat is very deceptive, when you are below, or in the cuddy on deck, or even on the helm looking forwards, it all seems relatively tame. But a couple of times today I have been reminded that 35 knots is very, very fast indeed.



Earlier I went to the leeward side, to look at the gennaker trim, and watched the wake firing off the leeward hull. It's unbelievable how fast that looks, and how strongly you get the impression of

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Synthetic Rigging: Not just for racers anymore?

5 Jan

From day one this project has been a lighthearted battle of wills between my father and I. On the one hand (as anyone familiar with his articles is likely to have noticed) he seems to extract some sort of deep-seated joy out of tinkering with the cutting edge of technology. On the other, I experience a similar feeling when I manage to repair some thirty-five year old bit of the boat that seemed destined for the scrapheap. Minor skirmishes -such as the tossing out and subsequent retrieval of used screws- are a daily occurrence. Then there are the grand engagements. ...

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DEAD GUY: Sumner “Huey” Long

5 Jan

Huey Long racing aboard Ondine

Editor’s note: This news is a month old, but I just heard it yesterday. There will be a memorial service this Saturday at 2 pm at the Kings Point Merchant Marine Academy in New York. The following obit is from Huey’s son Russell:

Sumner “Huey” Long, an international yachtsman, shipping executive, and winner of every one of the world’s most challenging and dangerous ocean races, died of lymphoma on Dec. 4, at age 90.

Creating a succession of hi-tech racing sailboats named Ondine, and spanning the decades from the 1960s to the 1990s, Mr. Long won every major ocean ...

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Ice Fishing On LSD

5 Jan

Okay, I have no proof drugs are involved. But this is the most creative fishing video you will see all day/month/year. Plus, it's spectacularly beautiful.

Watch to the end if you are confused about what the heck is going on. Even then I have questions. 

 ...

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Remembrance of Things Bashed

5 Jan

The link posted by The Mariner to the Cowes Race Week boat dismating was like replaying what happened to me off the Brazilian coast in 2006. It was nighttime and the ship that hit me was moving a bit faster, but the accident was much the same: A T-bone by an 800-footer, my ketch then sliding down the ship's port side, and the ship's port anchor catching the forestay/roller furler and carrying it away. But my mast stayed up. Isn't sailing fun?

You can read my whole container ship accident story here, and scare your children into keeping a ...

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