TANDEM ANCHOR SYSTEM: An Anchor Within An Anchor

29 Nov

Tandem Anchor illo

This new anchoring system, developed by Peter Weber in Slovenia, was formally introduced at the METS (Marine Equipment Trade Show) extravaganza in Amsterdam this month, where it was nominated for a DAME Award, and was also on our shortlist at SAIL when we put our heads together this week to pick winners for the 2013 Freeman K. Pittman Innovation Awards. It is a fascinating concept. The drawing up top gives a clear idea of the basic principle: a pair of anchors that can be deployed together on a single chain rode, designed so that one can nest inside the ...

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A Hunger for Sailing

29 Nov

For sailors passing through the pristine waters of St. Vincent and the Grenadines with an insatiable hunger for the destination’s ever-changing kaleidoscope of blue, green and aquamarine seas, it’s hard not to work up an appetite. Tamarind Beach Hotel & Yacht Club, a luxuriant beachfront escape on the beautiful crescent-shaped island of Canouan, has just opened a delicious delicatessen shop on property called “Buon Appetito.” The shop is designed for sailors in the Grenadines and passerby guests to enjoy– with cold cuts, pate, cheese, pastas, wines and much more in stock. It’s an opportunity for non-guests of the hotel to ...

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Hans Klaar Sets Sail

29 Nov

Regular readers will know that Hans Klaar is a remarkable voyager–a builder of classic two-hulled sailing craft, who sails where the wind and his spirit take him. After a shocking and painful turn in his life, Klaar set out to build a new boat on the west coast of Africa. 

And every once in a while, out of the blue, he sends me an update on his progress and whereabouts, which always get me dreaming and thinking my life is way too bound by convention. Here is his latest, from this morning, with the welcome news that he completed ...

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The Fastest Sailing Run Ever

28 Nov

We got the news of SailRocket's mindblowing new outright speed record of 65.45 knots over the weekend.

Now we get the video and analysis from Paul Larsen.

First, the video, in which you can see what real speed (and joy) looks like. (Props to whoever got those shots from a remote control helicopter).

And here is some of what Paul Larsen had to say (his full account is here):

We were using all the course this time. We hit it hard and the acceleration was rapid. We went straight into the 60's. The pod was instantly high

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CARTOGRAPHIC MYSTERY: The Island That Wouldn’t Be

28 Nov

Sandy Island maps

I PLAY THIS GAME with crew on offshore passages sometimes, just to mess with their heads. I tell them the island we’re bound for doesn’t really exist–that evil cartographers just made it up and put it down on charts so that silly sailors like us would try to go there. If you’re a skeptic at heart, this is a perfectly feasible scenario.

Case in point: just last week a team of Australian geologists aboard the research vessel Southern Surveyor decided to check out a place called Sandy Island that some of their charts said lies at 19.22 S 159.94 E ...

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Home from the Caribbean – 60 miles on the bike, and one felled tree

27 Nov

It's way past fall now, and my sailing days are over for a while. Mia and I got back from Tortola last Sunday after an awesome week running the Caribbean 1500 cruising rally finale. We had a blast at the prize giving ceremony, the highlight of which was when Martin, skipper of the Australian-flagged JAC,  came onstage to present the 'Best Bruise' award (quick aside: Mia had created an Excel list of prize distributions before the event. I was reading down the list preparing my speech, and came across the 'Best Bruce' prize. Excuse me? I thought. Ironically, there was ...

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Loick Peyron On The AC72: It’s REALLY On The Edge

27 Nov

We've all been watching the development of the AC72, trying to get a good feel for what kind of design it is, what the limits are, where the risks lie.

We've seen ETNZ handle their beast with aplomb

We've seen Oracle Racing devoured.

But now, for the first time, we have a real inside evaluation of the AC72. It comes courtesy of Loick Peyron, who is working with Artemis Racing and has probably sailed more miles in more multihull designs than just about any sailor on the planet. 

Peyron knows what he is talking about, so when he ...

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RAMAZAN CULUM: Love-Crazed Cruiser Busted

27 Nov

Culum detained in UK

Talk about cruising with a purpose. Some people go sailing to break records (see, e.g., Reid Stowe), some go to attract publicity (see Reid and/or Jarle Andhoey), some go to find God (or themselves), and most go just for the hell of it. But here’s a guy–a 38-year-old Turkish business executive named Ramazan Noyan Culum–who sailed all the way from Bodrum, Turkey, to Plymouth, England, covering some 2,500 miles over seven months in a 16-foot boat, just so he could continue to harass a waitress he fell in love with who he knew despised him.

And what does ...

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SailRocket Is Unstoppable

26 Nov

Now we've gone from impressive to off the charts (the speed sailing charts, that is).

After nabbing the outright speed sailing record ten days ago with a Walvis Bay run of 59.23 knots, Paul Larsen took his suddenly brilliant design back out for another windy day over the weekend. 

The result? A blistering run that raised the outright record to 65.45 knots, and topped out at 68.01 knots (subject to WSSRC verification). In short, Larsen and the SailRocket team just raised kiteboarder Rob Douglas's previous record of 55.65 knots by almost 10 knots. That's not just an ...

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