on board


A couple of Pac Cup reports from a couple of class (and overall) leaders…

From Erik Shampain on the SC 50 Horizon:

To say the least we are getting very excited. Today we were once again 1st in class and 1st in fleet! That in itself is a major accomplishment. In addition we might be the 1st boat to finish for a clean sweep. In order to do this we will need to pass all the remaining boats that are a head of us as well as hold off the faster boats that started behind us. As of this afternoon we have 570 miles to go and the next 48 hours will tell the tale. If you want to see more details on our track please go to the web site and check it out.

Last night was the typical trade wind race. Even though it was still dark as hell it was manageable. The winds were a little shifty and averaged in the mid to upper teens with gusts in the lower 20’s. The key to last night was the sea state. Pretty sable and predictable. Normal conditions and everyone had a great time driving.

Horizon is steaming to the finish. I’m very happy with her performance and coupled with all the other carnage on the race course her prep once again has paid off in a big way. It’s nice to know and be confident that under the most severe conditions we can hold it together as long as we don’t do anything foolish.

Speaking of foolish we as a society should be ashamed as to how we are treating our ocean. This is my 5th crossing to Hawaii and I can honestly say the most embarrassing as far as all the garbage that we have had to duck and probably hit during the middle of the night. Trash such as plastic buckets, coolers, cups, rope and just about anything that won’t disintegrate over time is swirling around in our waters. On the average we are passing foreign objects multiple times per hour. Not only are they dangerous and can damage our boat it’s just awful to see what we are doing to our oceans. We need to wake up!

Today our weather is the typical tropics. Sunny, hot and finally after six days we are drying out. Our hatches are open and Horizon is starting to air out. Thank God!

Last night we had Jambalaya not Lasagne. My mistake. It was great Peter did a super job and this evening we’ll be having the Lasagne.

Currently we are under our 2A Spinnaker and are averaging 10 knots per hour. Not fast but quick enough to do the job. Hopefully we’ll have another great evening and have a another great report tomorrow.

That’s it for now. Pretty anxious that we can hold our position. Until tomorrow, go Horizon!

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From Jeff Thorpe on the R/P 45 Criminal Mischief:

Today we just gybed onto port to make our layline from 1070 miles out we will see how accurate our grib files and Expedition router will be as the weather out look is still for more breeze out of the north and west! Last night we finally changed from our A7 frac to our full size A2.5 but i am afraid that we made a mistake being too conservative with not wanting to shift up trying to save kites which has cost about 20 miles or more with Mirage who crossed our stern by about 5 miles at 10 am this morning. They came across on a wind of 045 and we extended for 5 hours on the headed gybe then gybed over and we now have a wind of 065 with the finish bearing 213 with us sailing at 215 to 200 so hopefully the wind stays from this direction and we can make up our lost miles back on them…

Drying out! Today is the first time we have been able to be on deck with out full foulies on and not having to sleep in them also. We have gone thru an extensive bailing out of the boat today and trying clean up the mess. Boy does it smell fresh on this boat Hopefully by tomorrow it will be warm enough for the boys to take showers!

Had a nice chat with the hippie on Horizon this morning and he knows we are chasing him down hopefully we bring some better wind with us. We got the better of him in Transpac year starting on the same day but it looks like he might get us this year! Gotta love the spread out start dates NOT!

Criminals out.

O80O tuesday 24 hr run 350 miles. After our slow start we have had just solid breeze
on since around 11pm sunday night! It has been a wet one onboard the Criminal more than normal! Every bunk is soaking wet we sleep in our foulies and boots on can’t keep the chart table dry thank god for my new water proof keyboard! But we have been rewarded with extreme sailing just ripping straight down the great circle route with 8 hour average boat speeds in the high 17 knots. But it has been cold wet and dark and the sea state has just been miserable to drive in.

Injury report. We blew up our laminate A3 and our A4 in the shitty sea state when the boat goes from 24 knots to 12 the kites seem to explode! so we have been sailing since yesterday afternoon with our frac A7 which has been just fine in 20 and above but a little lacking in the lulls, good thing the lulls are only for limited periods as soon as we think we need to change to a big kite the pressure comes in strong! So we are down to 3 kites left our A 1.5 , A2 , A2.5 , A7 so we are trying to sail conservatively while going 17 to 24 knots and not yard sale the A7…which is hard with our crew!