the real world
Heartbreaking proof of why we love Chris Nicholson, with Mark Covell doing a great job getting the full story out of him. There, but for the grace of god, go we. Those of you seeking answers, read the latest update here, have patience or go play here. And don’t forget: These guys are still on the beach.
We wouldn’t post this if we didn’t think Nico and the boys would chuckle at it.
Back To The Beach
There’s a fun new attitude in the Melges 32 Class – if there weren’t, the Rev Petey and Clean wouldn’t be down at their World Championship. Go here for OTW video and photos starting tomorrow around 11 AM EST, and watch the front page for a daily highlight reel to burn your retinas.
One Way Or Another
Andrew York gives us some juice on the latest VX-One action. We like the way these guys think.
I love it when a plan comes together! Well, the plan I put to the Sydney VX One fleet before the season came together in spades on Saturday the 29th of November.
In early September we had a meeting at the CYCA to discuss our plans for the season. At this meeting I asked the owners what their thoughts were about towing the boats up the coast to Pittwater one morning when the breeze was light and the sea pretty flat and then sailing back to Sydney in the building Nor-east seabreeze. Their reaction was ‘shit yeah, let’s do it!”
We would be at the mercy of the wind gods, and there’s only a 30% chance of a good seabreeze on any given day from October through to December. So we allocated four of the Saturdays in November as ‘possible days’. I rang around to find a boat to tow us and Steve Barlow who had a Riviera 44 said he was up for it. I knew that he would do a great job and that his boat would be the perfect platform to take photos of the day.
The first three weekends did not work out for us, but as soon as the seven day forecasts were out, Saturday the 29th looked the goods. There would be a light wind in the morning and the seabreeze building to 15 knots or more in the afternoon. Most importantly there would be only a three foot swell offshore for the tow up the coast. On Tuesday I notified everyone that it was a go for our trip to Pittwater on the weekend.
We would be towing from the hardstand at RANSA in Rushcutters Bay; five nautical miles to North Head and then another fifteen nautical miles up the coast to Barrenjoey Headland.
Friday dawned and all was good, until I received a message from Scott Lawson that he had been sick all week and did not think he would be able to make it. He graciously offered the use of his boat if I could find a suitably experienced skipper and crew. Although the offer to steer a VX One down the coast is a good one, I knew that the lack of notice might not make it easy to fill the roles.
I found a couple of guys more than capable of sending Scott’s boat safely down the coast. Some guys named Iain Murray and Lach Gilbert would be joined by Scott’s son Harry; one of Australia’s top 29er sailors.
With Beth Morley of sportsailingphotography aboard Steve’s boat to record our adventures and the boats hitched up, we started our journey from the dock in Rushcutters Bay. The sea was nice and flat and we averaged a bit over 9 knots on the tow, arriving at Barrenjoey around 1:30pm and heading around behind The Joey to hoist our sails, with Murray arriving by boat to join us. We beat out past the headland and then started heading south. There was quite a bit of East in the breeze so it was a two sail reach for a couple of miles until we could hoist our kites.
Phil Tomkins, sailing two-up, was fairly pressed as we surfed wave after wave. We were doing 14 to 17 knots most of the time while the Riviera buzzed around setting up the shots for Beth. We enjoyed the ride down the coast for about an hour before we jibed to go in through the heads.
When you sail downwind for 20 miles in a VX One, offshore in a building breeze, it’s a good day, a very good day!