While I am not superstitious, today’s events in proper Friday the 13th
fashion. Started the day off by knocking a bit of the dust off that remained
after a night out in South Haven. Met up with the rest of the High Priority
2 team in Kalamazoo and we were on our way to Port Huron for the start of
the 2012 Bayview to Mackinac. We picked up HP2 in East Lansing without a
hitch and made our way to Port Huron. With the leftover adrenaline high from
winning first overall corrected for the Tripp Memorial Race (South Haven to
Milwaukee) and Queens Cup (Milwaukee to South Haven) we were eager to get
the boat in the water and start the race.
While at the launch ramp around 11
AM getting the boat organized we noticed we had a few, um, structural
spreader issues that needed immediate attention. A quick phone call to Meade
Gougeon, and he was at the boat in minutes. We came up with a strategy to
repair the spreaders, went to the store to get some Six-10 West System epoxy, and Meade and I got to work. Proper sanding with 80 grit and a nice lather
of Six-10 we made a 30 minute repair. Now the waiting game…Fellow crew
member Ryan Gardner and I wait in the asphalt parking lot with the boat in
the 90 degree heat while the epoxy cures for the next 4 hours. Finally we
get the boat launched and secured with the other multihulls in the raft.
And from Alex’s crewmate, Ryan:
So that happened. Fucking talked ourselves out of our originally correct rigging just long enough to slap a rig against a parking lot! Only one spreader took the full digger from cabin top to asphalt, so could have been way worse.
My main concern was making sure the boat could race next weekend, with the owner on board. I believed the spreaders could be fixed, but I didn’t want to go out with repaired spreaders and fold the mast in half because I overlooked some structural damage. My exact words to the boys were "if Meade says we can go, we’re going". Without Meade looking at the boat, I thought we should go back to the boat barn and make sure HP2 was ready for Chicago.
Long story short; Meade told us we "weren’t real multihull sailors if we never dropped a mast next to the boat". Basically Meade explained how much stronger all the shit we broke would be after we fixed it with 6ten. He donated his time and skill and totally saved us. Just a crazy amount of good guy shit he did today, all while he could have been tweaking adagio or booby trapping Strings.
Weather forecast looks great. One model showing 1 day 2 hours, the other showing 1 day 3m hours. See ya on the island!