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Posts Tagged ‘Sam Greenfield’

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Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 9.38.55 AMWe may sound like a bit of a broken record, but once again, Sam Greenfield is raising the bar on Volvo Ocean Race media from aboard the DFRT.  Why?  Because he’s making us laugh.  Here’s Sam’s ‘washing up cooking pots for mom’ report, and we encourage all of you – especially the young’uns, to read Sam’s “Advice to future OBRs” report here.

Dear Mom,

Do you remember how getting me to wash the dishes after meals never came easy? Sorry about that. I know, it never ‘just happened’ like you see in the movies, or plainly through the windows of the neighbors’ houses. I don’t know why it was always such a battle, or why the Fields next door were such better behaved kids, but I hope you never saw it as a reflection of your parenting skills. You were great and I was just a bit of a little sh*t when it came to household chores, all of my college roommates will back this up. But people change, and because you are the best mom I know today’s blog is dedicated to you.

Hey Mom! Guess what the Volvo Ocean Race taught me how to do!

Here’s the setting:  The sun has just gone down and it’s blowing 25 knots and we’re on a screaming reach, sailing about as fast as the wind. The boat is heeled over 30 degrees and sheets of water are getting picked up by the bow and flying clear over the satellite tower.

We’re settled into living on a soaking wet rock-climbing wall set on the back of what feels like an elephant jumping over hedgerows.

Are most days anything like this? No. But a little dramatic effect never hurt.

I’m warm and dry and standing in the hatchway watching waves plaster the guys, and I’m wondering how the hell can I get one of them to wash this pot for me.

It usually takes about 30 seconds to strike that thought from my head and haul my ass into gear.

My mission is to bring our prized, French, stainless steel pressure cooker from the galley all the way to the low side at the very back of the boat with a sponge, some dish soap, wash her, and return her safely so I can start cooking the next hot meal.

It’s a perilous journey that would ideally require four hands, but thanks to you, Mom –really- I only have two.

Part 1. Preparation

There’s an unspoken rule about washing the pot off the stern of the boat: If you drop her you might as well jump in after her. Seriously, Mom, the crew would murder me. There’s no replacement. The only option is straight into the ocean.

Stop thinking that. There’s always at least a couple other Volvo Ocean 65s nearby and I’m determined to make sure that one of the boats chasing our wake would be able to pick me up and bring me to safer harbors in the event of such misfortune.

So, my dish-washing ritual begins with a rummage for five essential items, night or day:

1. My pocket EPIRB – which notifies the coast guard and race control if activated in the water.

2. My pocket AIS Tracker, which when activated allows any boat in a 10-mile radius to see me on their navigation screen

3. My strobe light – Brighter than Jesus with a jetpack, it’s a waterproof beacon that pulses and is visible up to a distance of 5 miles

4. My Musto HPX bottoms and top

5. My PDF/Harness (if it’s night time and really shitty). Just for you.

Now, Mom, I’m completely waterproof and I have more advanced electronics stuffed into my pant pocket than the Apollo lander needed to make it home from the moon.

It’s time for…

Part II. The Perilous Journey

I put my hood on before I grab the pot. It’s pretty heavy to hold in one hand. Or maybe I’m not very strong. Probably that. So I go to the hatch and wait for a wave to break over the deck.

Because just as the plane that crashes into the house in The World According to Garp was a 100 year boon, each wave is typically a 60 second boon.

I hold the pot in my downwind hand so that the other can anchor onto the tops of winch drums and handles and I swing and hop back through the cockpit over the jib sheet and over the mainsheet to the radar tower while trying to stay out of the way of the main trimmer and grinder.

Remember, 30 degrees heel on a leaping elephant and it’s a massive drop to the bottom, where Pascal fractured a few of his vertebra on the first leg to Cape Town.

I try not to think about that either.

From the tower I scooch –yes scooch like a puppy dog – down to the leeward rail on my ass, because at this point I can see the water screaming out the back and I can’t drop the pot.

Regardless of what you think, compared to this pot, I have no value.

30-seconds later I’m hanging over the stern in a fetal crouch,praying to god that the metal lifelines weren’t made in… forget that thought.

You know, I try not to think about falling in, because the boat would be miles away before they could even turn around. So instead I usually just talk nonsense and go, ‘woowhoo’, cause the truth is it’s really damn fun once you’re down there.

Now you’d think that the pot would get ripped right out of your hand when dipped into the water, but when the boat is traveling over 10 knots it just sort of bounces across the surface like a skipped stone.

So I drag, scrub and repeat and pray while all the screaming forces of Neptune do the same to me.

By the time I make it back to the main cabin, my foul weather gear is soaked from tip to toe. The pot is clean. And so am I.  Sort of.

That’s when I often think, “maybe doing the dishes when I was a kid wasn’t as big a deal as I made it out to be…gee, I wish I hadn’t made it so hard for mom.”

So dear Mom: Happy Valentines Day from Lat. 18.650N Long 136.397E.  I don’t think the card is going to make it.

But as soon as I get back to the States, I’m coming straight to yours and I hope you leave the dishes out for me.  I promise not to drop any.

Happy Valentines Day.

Love,

Sam

P.S. I have no idea what I’d do if I dropped the pot and we were in last place, so I try not to think about that. xo

February 14th, 2015 by admin

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After receiving thousands of applications for the On-Board Reporter program, and with a high likelihood that at least one of the seven OBRs would be knocked out of the race for one reason or another, you’d think that VOR headquarters would have a solid list of qualified replacements – but you’d be wrong.  And when doctors diagnosed Dong Feng OBR Yann Riou’s wife with a life-threatening illness and he left the race two weeks ago, a mad scramble ensued in Alicante and Abu Dhabi to find someone to fill his brilliant shoes.

Thankfully, that lack of preparedness opened the door for a kid who we consider one of our own, and one of those talents who will help define the sport over the next decade: Longtime SA contributor Sam Greenfield was working in the video edit room for the VOR tv army – he was there, he was ready, and he was raring to go.

If you’ve read anything over the past few years here, you know we think Sam is sailing’s version of a young Warren Miller, and his work has the same potential to revolutionize the perception of a sport just as Miller did for backcountry and extreme skiing.  Despite our hearty endorsement, there was a palpable fear from quite a few VOR and team staffers; Sam is undeniably talented, but he’s never dealt with the specific pressure of on-board race coverage, with all the obstacles it brings.  We didn’t doubt him for a second, and after watching his first dispatch from the now-leading Dongfeng Race Team, we’re glad to see that, as usual, we were right.

This kid is money, as are the subjects in his first video – Kevin Escoffier and the hazards of fishing nets. Clicky the video above, and keep your eyes on the Leg 3 thread for upcoming interviews we did with all 6 OBRs just hours before the start, as well as everything else you need to know about the VOR.

 

January 4th, 2015 by admin

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If Sam Greenfield’s latest Volvo Ocean Race video doesn’t get you stoked for the race, nothing will.  Along with Amory Ross finding really finding his writing voice during last week’s Team Alvimedica Transat, Americans should be proud of having two of the best young storytellers in the sport playing key roles in the biggest ocean racing event we’ve got.  They’re also helping US fans get stoked about their team on the world stage, and we’re digging it.

Alvimedica’s updates are most easily followed via Twitter, and browse the VOR’s channel for some of their latest work here.

 

June 10th, 2014 by admin

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We love beach cats because they’re quick, and we love them because beach cat girls get naked when they change into their wetsuits.  But we also love them because of the crowd they attract, and regardless of where you go for an F-18 regatta, you’re bound to have a hell of a time.  SA video kid Sam Greenfield finds a great route into that fun, and his final highlight video from the F-18 Championship of the Americas, last week in Sarasota, is a great look into the beach cat culture.  Congrats to Tripp and Mike on a big win!

October 29th, 2013 by admin

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As temperature plummet and ski areas begin to open their lifts, we bring you some interesting movies from the still-beating heart of the sport.

 

Project USA

We’ve made no excuses about our enthusiasm for offshore racer Ryan Breymaier, who may just be America’s only real hope at a major US sponsor and top US result in the Vendee Globe.  The Annapolis native became the first American to break into the French offshore scene in memory, working as rigger and shore crew during Roland Jourdain’s Veolia Open 60 and MOD campaigns, and taking the helm of the generations-old Neutrogena to finish 5th in the non-stop(ish) Barcelona World Race.

Thanks largely to Larry Ellison, America is more attuned right now to sailboat racing now than it has been since 1987.  Between the wonderful AC72 final, a recent HBO Sports documentary on Alex Thomson, and the soon-t0-be-released Robert Redford singlehanded blockbuster “All is Lost”, if there has ever been a time for a US-based racer to push for a major sponsor, the time is now.

Fortunately the good folks at 5West know all that — that’s the Sir Keith Mills-backed agency that handles Thomson’s Open 60 management and the Hugo Boss sponsorship contract — and they’re throwing their hat in with Breymaier.  5West hopes to use their contacts and experience to land him a budget for next year’s Barcelona and 2016′s Vendee Globe, hopefully waking up the largely untapped American market to IMOCA style racing.  Anyone who cares about offshore racing and the US should head over to the Project USA site to find out more.  And if you’d like to see an American effort in the next big race and your company (or an affiliate) is looking for some innovative sports/green marketing, get in touch with them right away!

 

Americans of the Americas

With just one day left of the first-ever F-18 Championship of the Americas, the Dutch are hanging on to a slim lead over longtime SA’ers Tripp Burd and Mike Easton from New England, who are wicked close to the front as the breeze picks up for Saturday’s racing.  Here’s Friday’s highlight skylight reel from Sam Greenfield.

 

American Gold

America’s continued waning on the world sailing stage is certainly depressing to those who remember the dominating days of the star-spangled banner.  Embarrassing performances at the past few Olympics, yet another Volvo failure, sparse appearances on sailing’s biggest podiums, and the sole US players at the recent America’s Cup consisting of a tactician who got the flick, a helmsman long since booted, a CEO who disappeared in disgrace, and a lone US grinder who drank from the Cup.

But all is not lost, and America can now claim not only to have the world’s best sailing website, some of the world’s best sailing videographers, and even a recent Moth World Champ: We’ve also got the world’s best match racer!

We’re speaking of course of Taylor Canfield and his USone team.  They didn’t repeat as Bermuda Gold Cup champions this year, but they did exactly what they needed to do in order to cement their lead at the top of the WMRT and the ISAF rankings: Crush Ian Williams.  They did it, and here’s the video that proves it; produced, shot, and edited by Matt Knighton.

 

50 Shades Of Greenpeace

By now everyone knows what scumbags the folks at Gazprom are, and while no one thinks that morally-challenged ISAF is going to do anything about the knife-and-bottle-wielding thug and Esimit Europa shore crew who attacked peaceful Greenpeace protesters, it seems international outcry over the Arctic Sunrise arrests has finally accomplished something. Russia announced the imprisoned activists (along with two journalists) would now face charges of ‘Hooliganism’ instead of the Piracy they previously were threatened with after staging a sit-in on an Arctic drilling rig; while Piracy carries a 15-year sentence, “Hooliganism” presumably carries a different charge – that is, if it is indeed a crime and not just something made up by former KGB officials to suit their needs for the moment.  It’s not much of a stretch – time and again, Russian officials show they care about laws only when it suits them – as evidenced last week when they announced they’d boycott next week’s hearing into the arrests called by the UN-chartered International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea; the Russians said they ‘not intend to take part in the tribunal’s hearings’.  How convenient.  Regardless of the outcome of this gas profit-fueled shitshow, Gazprom ain’t leaving sailing anytime soon.  Sponsorship hunters: Be careful what you wish for and even more careful who you are linked to.

The silver lining?  All this excitement gives us a nice excuse to show you a gorgeous video of Greenpeace’s new sailboat; the one we first  reported on back in 2010. Movie produced by Heath Hanson.

 

 

October 26th, 2013 by admin

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Videokid Sam Greenfield continues to bring a fresh look to the classic ‘regatta report’, and today’s installment from the F-18 Championship of the Americas highlights the next generation of high-performance sailing talent coming from its incubator; the Sarasota Sailing Squadron youth sailing program.  Results after 12 races: The Dutch are crushing!  There are Kattack tracks here as well.

 

October 25th, 2013 by admin

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No cheating, plenty of man love, and a team that’s so into it that they yell ‘Fuck, Yeah!” after nailing a start and sailing off to a Red Bull Youth AC Race 1 win.  It’s everything you wished the America’s Cup was, and Sam Greenfield gives us the American Youth Sailing Force highlight reel above.

While Pete Burling’s Sailing With ETNZ team has a nice 7-point lead going into the final day of action, we find it frightfully easy to cheer for a US team of real people actually doing well who got to the starting line by cutting checks from their savings account and learning how to hustle.  Genny T grabbed a few of the nippers and put ‘em on camera as well; check it here.

See if America (or Australia, who finally has their train rolling) can pull it off during today’s final races live on YouTube if you are in Nigeria and if ACTV can get their act together, here on TVNZ if you are a flightless bird, or here on ServusTV if you can’t figure out the proxy server system or you don’t mind German.

And go Like the Sailing Force boys if you’re a proud American.  Title shout out to some animated brilliance.

 

September 4th, 2013 by admin

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Sam Greenfield grabbed this shot of the American nippers getting their AC45 ready for some training in advance of September’s Red Bull Youth AC.  Given the likelihood of further disappointment to anyone looking for close America’s Cup racing in the AC72 and the young, fun, nationalistic, and likely close racing in the 45s, we’re stoked on the series; or rather we would be if AC had any intention of sending the racing feed out to the world.  Check the schedule yourself…are they serious?

Here’s some good AC video pieces on the “handoff” of the AC45s to the kids.  Check those king posts…and while the title may make you think of Van Halen’s Sammy Hagar days, we like Train better; especially when they’re one of the few things ACEA is doing well.

 

August 14th, 2013 by admin

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 The boys on the M34 Iskareen team continue to take great care of sailing reality show creator Sam Greenfield, and we continue to admire the work the young videographer is doing to bring the real feel of the Tour De France a la Voile to our screens.  And not just ours – Somehow Sam’s “The Other Tour De France” video made it up to the actual trillion-fan Tour De France (bicycle race) Facebook page too.  Not only can he shoot and edit, but the kid can spam!  Well done, and enjoy this great slice of life from lovely Breskens, Netherlands.  And if you want racing video – mostly of Franck Cammas and team caning the fleet, hit the TdF video page.  And if you missed part one of “Je Suis Sam (Sam, I am), go here.

July 8th, 2013 by admin

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