Kimball Livingston

First Time for WHAT?

15 May

May 14, 2017

Strange things happen on the San Francisco cityfront. Waves like moguls. Currents running faster than most people swim. A US Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year spending the first weekend of her life racing boats?


Daniela Moroz was 15 years old when she won the women’s world championship of foiling kite racing and was nominated for the Rolex title. Over the weekend, at the ripe age of 16, she spent two days sailing Nacra 15 catamarans and called it “a lot of fun.” Welcome to the other side, Daniela.

She was all smiles at the dock ...

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Lick WHAT?

30 Apr

April 30, 2017

The close of springtime high school sailing over the weekend coincided with the opening day of a heat wave on the San Francisco cityfront. Race one of the city championship was delayed, and so we find that a skateboard can be an important component of a complete sailing kit.

Anyone not local might struggle with the notion that temperatures in the high sixties Fahrenheit – almost seventy degrees – would qualify as a heat wave, and that just means they’re not local to the San Francisco cityfront. But the weather hold was mercifully brief. Soon enough the ...

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Imprinted on the Sea

24 Feb

By Kimball Livingston
Posted February 23, 2016
Adapted from “The Old Man and the Old Man and the Sea” published in SAIL, December, 2001
Lead photo of Wander Bird by Ben Mendlowitz

Eighty-three years ago, aboard one of the storied schooners of the age, a father was performing chores on the topmast rigging, up where the seabirds fly. Suddenly he discovered he was not alone there, with 60 feet of air between his feet and the hard.

It was a heart-stopping moment.

Then Warwick M. Tompkins, Sr. said something like, “Well, hi there son. I didn’t know you were coming ...

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Love Letter to Sailing, Again

12 Feb

By Kimball Livingston

It’s such a common phrase that we take it for granted. The romance of the sea. Even those who dwell far from the sea are not immune to it. Red sails in the sunset. The very notion of sailing away to paradise. Those who heed the call, those who love the sea and sailing, will not find it strange that a sailor would choose to send a Valentine to the sport.

Once upon a time there lived a young man so enamored of sailboat racing that he couldn’t look out from the deck of one raceboat to ...

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Pearl of the Pacific

23 Sep

Story and Photos by Kimball Livingston

Published September 23, 2015

At our shoreside celebration on Huahine, one bright gazelle of a female child dashed to and fro, to and fro, leaping to the beat of the drums, infectious joy trailing in her wake. Was she a French local, in from Papeete for Tahiti’s annual gathering of the sailing tribes, the Pearl Regatta? Did she come by way of a long distance cruiser, with parents not satisfied to merely pass through but seizing the opportunity to play sailing games along the way? Did she come from one of the boats ...

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9 Sep

From the nice folks at DORADE.ORG

Defying critics who said it couldn’t be done, Dorade has completed a four-year campaign to repeat all of the major ocean races she won in the 1930s, finishing up on the podium at the 2015 Rolex Fastnet Race, where she took second in IRC Class 4 and seventh overall out of 356 boats. A 52’ wooden yawl built in 1930 by Olin and Rod Stephens, Dorade was the oldest boat to compete in this year’s Fastnet and took home three of the event’s most prestigious trophies: the Sparkman & Stephens Trophy, the Iolaire Block, ...

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Finns Go Deep on Rule 42

29 Jun

As reported by the Finn Class regarding a problem area of the sport of dinghy racing. Posted June 29, 2015

A three day Rule 42 clinic was run by the Finn Class just before the Silver Cup in Valencia. Around 20 sailors competed at some point including the Juniors preparing for the week ahead as well as some seniors who were in Valencia for training.

Four on-the-water sessions were carried out along with de-briefings with videos from each day with detailed explanations from the judges. The clinic ended with two umpired medal races to give the sailors some experience of ...

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Well Shucks, Hydroptere

29 Jun

Posted June 29, 2015 by KL

Most boats making 12+ knots down the Transpac course to Diamond Head would be making good time.

But when it’s Hydroptere, doing the zig-zag thing, it’s not a good look.

For two years, Alain Thébault has been chasing his dream of a Transpac course record. Chasing, that is, the sponsorship to take a shot at what could almost have been a slam dunk, had the tradewinds of the Pacific provided the horsepower.

Alain’s enthusiasm is infectious, and he has a great group aboard. I can’t help feeling disappointed for them and for Alain, ...

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A Tender Spot

22 Jun

By Kimball Livingston Posted June 22, 2015

Care to crack a guess at what resides at 33.698825 – 118.291682 ?

If you said Point Fermin Lighted Whistle Buoy 6PF you’d be spot on, and you’d be right in tune with the folks from Transpac Yacht Club who set up a station today, ashore, at the Point Fermin Lighthouse planning to draw a bead on the buoy and thereby establish a starting line for Hydroptere’s run at the course record, Los Angeles to Honolulu, Point Fermin to Diamond Head.

Imasgine their surprise when –

Out of the breakwater and past Angel’s ...

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Busting Forty

13 Jun

By Kimball Livingston Posted June 13, 2015

I saw only one helmet aboard the trimaran, Lending Club. That’s because only one person at a time goes up the mast. I didn’t notice any divots . . .


The lead photograph comes from Lending Club Sailing, btw. The other snaps are mine.

Originally a Groupama, later one of the Banque Populaires, Lending Club has a hole in the calendar after setting a new 635-mile Newport to Bermuda record that lops 15 hours off the old mark. Next in the racing sked comes a start on July 18 in the Transpac, ...

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