Mackinac bound!—Sailing News from the U.S. and Beyond
hot and shifty, with winds generally south of fifteen knots. While the densely populated Tartan 10 class (24 contenders) is spread out, the boats that sailed offshore (as in all classes) are seeing better results than the boats that hugged the coast.
In the Turbo division, Windquest, a fixed-keel Z 86, and il mostro, a 2008-2009 generation Volvo Open 70, are also seeing meager breezes that have thwarted any hopes of besting the late, great Roy Disney's 2002 record passage aboard his Pyewacket of just 23 hours, 30 minutes for the 289 nautical mile course. As expected, the meager breeze has done nothing to ease the competition between the line-honors contenders, and the two boats have been trading pole position since the starting guns sounded.
According to meteorologist Chris Bedford, a front is supposed to pass through this evening, offering fresher winds tomorrow from the south-southwest. It will certainly be interesting to see what this freshening breeze will mean for the line-honors battle that's playing out between il mostro and Windquest. Stay tuned to the website for more information from this historic event, as it becomes available.
Mister Ed, IMX 38, starting the Ackroo Lake Ontario 300 Challenge 2012 Greg Nicoll
And also in Great Lakes distance-racing news, don't miss Greg Nicoll's report from the ongoing Ackroo Lake Ontario 300 Challenge. 'Seventeen-plus knots of wind,' reported Ian McAllister from the IMX 38, Mister Ed. 'Huge swells going into Main Duck. More than one spinnaker was torn in 20 knots of wind rounding the island.' At the time of this writing, Gaucho, a Farr 44, is holding pole position, with some 134 miles of sailing to go. More, inside.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the Pond, Gold Coast Australia has won the overall prize in the 2011/2012 Clipper Around the World Yacht Race. 'It has been an amazing adventure,' said skipper Richard Hewson, Gold Coast Australia from the finishing line in Southampton, UK. 'From the start we've had plans to dominate the race and we've definitely done that. It was very competitive and we've racing against some fantastic tough competition all the way. We've achieved so much more than we set out to achieve and had so many wins and podiums, but to stand here on the stage as winners is unbelievable. I've had an amazing crew that's made this happen.'
Mandy Barker christens New Zealand. Emirates Team New Zealand naming ceremony for 'New Zealand', the team's first AC72. Chris Cameron/ETNZ
In Cup news, be sure to check out the video clip of Emirates Team New Zealand's (ETNZ) AC72 wingsail-powered catamaran as she heads out of Viaduct Harbor. The video, while shot on an iPhone, offers the best glimpse to date of an AC72's deck layout, and it also offers some visual evidence of how ETNZ approached the winch problem, and how to tame the massive loads generated by the mighty wingsail. Don't miss the images and the report from ETNZ's launching ceremony, which took place over the weekend, and stay tuned for more images and video footage of the big cat sailing, as it becomes available.
Also inside, be sure to get the latest reports from the Opti Worlds, the Laser North Americans, the New York Yacht Club's Race Week, and the wrap-up report from the RC44 Sweden Cup, the Opti Worlds. And, given that the start of the Games is less than a week away, please also stand by for plenty of Olympic coverage, as the news unfurls.
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