May is a fine, fine month for sailing and for spring regattas in most parts of the country-even up here in Seattle, where the 'dark curtain' can make things a bit soggy and mossy most of the year. Right now, however, the sun is shinning, there’s a thin breeze blowing from the northwest, and sailors are arriving at nearby Shileshole Bay Marina (roughly one mile from Sail-World’s Seattle offices) for the annual Seattle NOOD regatta, which commences Friday and continues through Sunday.
The sun also shines on Puget Sound...sometimes.
Racing will take place in 17 different classes, with large concentrations of Melges 24s, J/24s, Mini 12s and even eight International 6-Meters (I’ll confess a certain smitten attraction to these lovely old ladies). According to the Internet weather geniuses, there’s a chance of rain Friday, with an even greater chance of liquid sunshine over the weekend, but hopefully this weather could translate into some breeze (a rarity around here when it’s sunny and the views are spectacular).
Meanwhile, on sailing’s grander stage, there is still frustratingly little new information emerging from Artemis Racing’s camp regarding their capsize last week, which resulted in the tragic death of double Olympic medalist Andrew 'Bart' Simpson (36; GBR). While it’s understandable that the team needs time to heal and to regroup, no new information has been released regarding the cause of the capsize (e.g., did the boat break and then capsize, or did the flip trigger the boat’s break-up?). More, as it (eventually) becomes known.
And in distance-racing circles, Class 40 sailors racing double-handed in the Atlantic Cup enjoyed a challenging first leg, which brought the eight-boat fleet from Charleston, South Carolina to New York City. According to reports, the top three steps on the podium were determined by when the lead boats opted to gybe offshore and point their bows towards the Big Apple.
'It was very cool to come bombing in from offshore in a 25 knot breeze behind us and doing 15 right into Ambrose channel and the shipping lanes of one of the world's busiest ports!' reported Joe Harris, skipper/owner of 'GryphonSolo2'. 'All seven boats finished within three hours of one another so it is clear the racing is very close.' Get the full Atlantic Cup report, inside this issue, and stay tuned for news from the Start of Leg Two (May 18).
Also inside, be sure to get the latest news from the AWMRT Match Race Germany, the Extreme Sailing Series and the MINI Kiteboard World Cup. Enjoy!
May the four winds blow you safely home,