Kiteboard Racing: Real Deal Or Cheap Thrills?

5 Oct

I don't really know what to make of kiteboard course racing, but I do know that kiteboarding is taking over the world and has kicked in the Olympic door.

But the world's best kiteboarders are in Cagliari, Sardinia right now, at the Course Racing World Championship, so we get a chance to see what it all looks like. Here's the promo:

My initial impression: style (speed) over substance (tacitics). But what do I know? So here's a summary of the

Day 1 racing action. Decide for yourself:

As a bonus, since we are talking about sailing disciplines that emphasize ...

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Sail repair for Idiots (of the capital I sort…)

4 Oct
Going up the mast to sort out the cause of a very stupid mistake…

My father has a mantra of sorts for whenever he does something really foolish- ‘Well, at least I can write about this…’ In that spirit, I have a confession to make.

A little while back a couple friends and I went out for an evenings sail and seeing as there was plenty of wind we decided to put the boat through its paces. I hadn’t yet put the rail underwater so that became the goal for the evening. Sailing close-hauled in 20+ knots with full main ...

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Chris Jordan: Bearing Witness

4 Oct

It's so rare that we see the full consequences of our actions, particularly when they have impact thousands of miles away. So I always appreciate it when someone takes the trouble to follow the causal chain, even if that means going to the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

A while back, I linked to photographer Chris Jordan, who is doing some remarkable work documenting the impact of plastic on albatrosses. Now Jordan is hard at work finishing a documentary, called "Midway–Message From The Gyre," and has put out a truly beautiful and moving trailer.

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Reprovisioning the French Polynesian Way

4 Oct

The last time I did an honest-and-true proper grocery store run was the beginning of May.  Looked at another way, about 4500 nm ago.  And while I still have more tinned beans aboard than are strictly necessary, we supplement with fresh things when we can.  Some places have been easy (San Cristobal (Galapagos), ...
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LEARNING TO SAIL: First Boats

4 Oct

Kids on duck boat

YOU HEAR LOTS OF COMPLAINTS these days about how there aren’t enough young people coming into, and staying involved in, the sport of sailing. Modern sailors, with much gnashing of teeth and rending of garments, love to debate the reasons for this. Many heap blame upon the venerable Optimist, the default training dinghy for the last half-century or more, and deride it as being too slow and boring to hold the interest of today’s hyperactive media-addled youth. Even at the highest levels, in the exalted realm of the America’s Cup, the working assumption seems to be that we must somehow ...

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America’s Cup? There’s An App For That

3 Oct

Well, Russell always said he was aiming for the Facebook generation. So the America's Cup is not only pushing the envelope on the water. It's also pushing into new territory online. And of course that means an America's Cup app, which is now available for iPad and iPhone.

 

Here's what the AC organizers are promising:

The new AC mobile application – America’s Cup, which is free and available in the iTunes app store (soon to come for Android), features content such as latest news, results, videos and event schedules, but it’s the delivery of the real

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Fine Tuning the Adjustments

3 Oct

When I look at what the America’s Cup race committee is expected to pull off in the October America’s Cup World Series on San Francisco Bay, inside tight boxes and even-tighter time frames, I am inspired to say:

Good luck, race committee.

Meanwhile, my latest exchange with Stephen Barclay, CEO of America’s Cup Race Management, casts a different framework around the whole discussion launched by Dean Barker’s blog-diatribe on Tuesday (Long Green, Marina Green) regarding changes to the plans for Piers 30-32 in AC34.

Mr. Barclay advises that he presented to the teams, before Barker wrote his piece, ...

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Long Green, Marina Green

3 Oct

Fascinating it is to try to sort out the moving parts in the latest wrinkle between America’s Cup, the teams, and the city of San Francisco. My Inbox at dawn was hardly as tranquil as this scene caught by Daniela Gonda and relayed by AC vet Mike Erlin . . .

Photo © Daniela Gonda

Emirates Team New Zealand skipper Dean Barker used the word “bombshell” in his Tuesday blog, referring to what he described as a new deal (redefined by the AC Event Authority) altering “what we have been told would be a fully functioning base area complete with ...

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And the Other News Is . . .

2 Oct

Photo By Guilain Grenier/Oracle Team USA

The first foiling exercise for USA-17 should have been the news of the day, even though the breeze was mild, the “flight” was brief, and it took the bigsail to get’er up.

But, it seems there has been a change of plans regarding San Francisco piers and team bases for 2013, and the America’s Cup Event Authority has let their Kiwi frenemies have the lead in spinning the story. And Dean Barker has gladly done so.

I figure this will be a developing story. As I recall leaving the storyline a while back, the ...

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ENDLESS STORM: Hurricane Nadine in the Record Books

30 Sep

Hurricane Nadine sat photo

NO ONE HAS BEEN PAYING MUCH ATTENTION, as she’s been wandering around far from land all this time, but as of today Hurricane Nadine has been raging in the North Atlantic for 18 days, which puts her in fourth place on the list of longest-lived named Atlantic storms since 1950. And she’s still not done yet.

As you can see here she has run a rather circuitous route and has already carved out one big clockwise loop south of the Azores. She’s currently in the middle of carving out a much smaller counter-clockwise loop west of the Azores, which, for ...

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