sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery

 

Sail-World.com : Right runway - wrong year for The Cone

Right runway - wrong year for The Cone

'The Cone in Hawaii'    Walt Niemczura
Story copyright James Neill who has reconfirmed his permission for this story to be published by Sail-World.com

'It was seven in the morning and the four of us had just stepped ashore in Honolulu. The Cone had been abandoned in hurry - haphazardly tied, sails and gear strewn about the cockpit and we were headed to the bar. As many will know there is weird, stunned atmosphere that comes with ending a long ocean race.

You shake hands and stand around not quite knowing what to do next.

An attractive girl approaches and says something like 'here is a bottle of rum as a gift from some guys on the mainland. You have never met them but they would like to buy you a drink.'

That was our first inkling that The Cone had won a few hearts. Similar gestures followed over the next few days and frankly we were a bit overwhelmed by the attention. The Cone seems to have touched a nerve with people who like to stick it to the big guys.

For the record, The Cone was first under 50 ft, first to finish off the July 15 start, first to finish in Division 3 (race boats up to 65 feet) and second on handicap in Division 3. Like all boats that started on July 15 we did crap overall on handicap – stuck in no wind while the groups who started 4 days earlier and 2 days earlier feasted (relatively).

Some people are interested in the detail so here goes.

We shipped The Cone from Sydney to LA and home again using CP Ships. It travelled on its road trailer, strapped to an open 'flat rack' container.

International shipping is very price competitive so it is remarkably inexpensive and simple to do this. It helps if you can find a company like CP

Ships who takes an interest in the project, as the handling is a bit more fiddly than a standard container. In LA The James Brooks Company stored it in their yard and trucked it to the shipyard. In Hawaii DHX, stored it and then trucked it to the wharf. All couldn’t have been more helpful or flexible.

This year’s Transpac was unusually light - 80% of it under 13 knots and mostly VMG running.

Under 12 knot VMG running is hell for all sports boats. To hang in with the big boys we need to plane - otherwise we are just displacement sailing a short boat. To plane in light winds sports boats need to sail hot angles - the net result therefore is that you sail hot angles all over the ocean doing lots or miles with pretty poor VMG while the big boys simply pole back and sail hull speed at the mark with better VMG. That was what happened for most of this Transpac – we must have sailed 400 more miles than 50’s we were racing with.

The only good thing was because we had to sail hot angles, we could go to where the wind was a little stronger and chase wind shifts. In the middle of the track for example we were almost 200 miles wider than the bulk of Division 3 – that’s a lot in a 2200-mile race.


The Cone’s big advantage downhill is the combination of low drag and plenty of power. In 15 knots plus it planes at a few knots less than the true wind speed rather than surges up to speed on surfing like heavier boats. It therefore tends toward holding a consistent high speed rather than having big changes of speed surfing like a heavier more ‘draggy’ boat.

This makes it relatively easy to sail, as there are not those big changes in apparent wind that you get when surfing waves. In 25 knots it will sit on 18 knots in flat water and seems happy do a couple of knots less than the true wind speed up to about 20 knots true.

Obviously a normal Transpac with days of 16 to 22 and relatively flat water is made to order - which is why we entered.

Sadly we never really got our conditions - except for the last 12 hours.

The boat is as light as a 30 footer can be - the ‘full Monty’ SP Systems pre-preg carbon and nomex everything with a ‘cored out’ porta potty, a useless never used stove and nothing much else.

The engine is a modified Tohatsu and weighs just 20 kgs and we have 8 kg Honda Generator to generate electricity.

For this race we went super light on gear, which meant we were about 200 kg lighter than when we race as a stripped out shell but with a full crew in Sydney Harbour.

We did that by going with just four guys and being ultra-harsh about weight - no fresh food, minimum water, almost no spare clothes, no cooking gear except for an electric kettle, the bare minimum of paperwork, no stereo – not even any porn. Being super light paid off – we were on the plane in 10 knots.

We used a laptop running Max Sea with an Iridium satellite connection to download the digital weather files known as GRIBs. In a boat like The Cone, where boat speed and therefore distance covered varies so much according to wind strength and direction, software like Max Sea is almost a necessity to be able to position the boat at the right time and in the right place to take advantage of shifts and/or pressure differences.

You need to take what the computer tells you as a guide rather than gospel but I think we managed the shifts relatively well. I think we picked up a bit more breeze than the boats that took a straighter course – but saying that, the shifts were mostly well forecast and because we were sailing such hot angles we were obviously going to hit them a lot harder and be more able to go to the better pressure than the bigger boats who were better off sailing a straighter track.

The crew was myself, Mark Matthews who built the boat, Andy Turton who is part of the Australian Volvo team and Eric Boothe, a full time sailor from Florida.

None of the crew was paid and they paid their own expenses.

We all drove. I navigated. Andy and Eric did most of the physical labour. They all were great but Andy in particular was a phenomenon – the antithesis of ‘rock star’ - doing the blue collar stuff like cooking and sail handling with endless energy.

The Cone is the right tool for the big downwind classics such as Transpac, Pac-Cup and Cape Town to Rio.

This was just the wrong year to do a Transpac. In the ‘normal’ 16 to 20 knot winds the Cone should reel off 360-mile days and be a contender on handicap.

The upside of this year being such a light year is the potential of doing better in the future. Sadly, it won’t be me.

I have non-sailing commitments for the next couple of years so the Cone is probably going to be sold.

I had wanted to do so much more with it such as Cape Town to Rio and an attempt on the under 24-hour record for small boats.

Whilst I can see the boat probably being sold for harbour and coastal racing, I hope whoever buys it takes on some of the big races so we can see what The Cone is really capable of. Of course, you never say never and maybe it won’t sell and I’ll be back in 2 years time.

Story copyright James Neill who has kindly given his permission for this story to be published by Sail-World.com




by James Neill

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=18525

10:59 PM Tue 9 Aug 2005 GMT






Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
2005 Centennial Transpac

Related News Stories:

25 Aug 2005  Challenged America tells tales of Transpac
31 Jul 2005  Winners and others honored at sold-out awards fete
29 Jul 2005  Morning Glory did not go slower than double digits
28 Jul 2005  Tabasco hot stuff in Division IV
28 Jul 2005  Bubala's 'Old Men Rule' in their special way
27 Jul 2005  Rosebud wins King Kalakaua Trophy
27 Jul 2005  The Cone - not fast enough!!
26 Jul 2005  The Cone 100 miles from Diamond Head
26 Jul 2005  Soap Opera in first - simply
26 Jul 2005  Transpac – The Cone aims for Molokai
MORE STORIES ...

News - USA and the World

Audi Melges 20 North American Championship - Tortoises, and the hare by International Audi Melges 20 Class Association
Racking up wins across North America including the U.S. Nationals, Canadian National Championship and most recently the Pacific Coast Championship, Gomes Neto has remained unfazed and is heading into their biggest challenge yet with a stacked fleet this coming weekend on San Francisco Bay. ... [more]  

2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - On-line entry will open on November 10, 2014 mocr.ussailing.org/!here!new. The deadline for priority entries with regards to quotas is December 5, 2014. Entries must be received no later than January 5, 2015 to qualify for early entry. ... [more]  

Having won the first race of the 2014 Melges Worlds in Lake Garda and finishing in high in the overall standings, Liam, with team Wildman, Stephanie Roble on strategy, Erik Shampain on trim, Steve Hunt on main and tactics, turns his focus to the 2014 Melges 20 North Americans running this week on San Francisco Bay and the 2015 Audi Melges 20 Worlds coming to SF Bay next year. ... [more]  

Team Vestas Wind's On Board Reporter, Brian Carlin, compiled an interesting gallery of images during the crew's delivery voyage and race qualifier. These are not the usual shots we have come to expect from the Volvo Ocean Race but rather some very clever and outstanding camera work. ... [more]  

It’s back to work for Peter Burling and Blair Tuke, at the Extreme Sailing Series, Nice. After taking a week off after their win at the 49er world championships in Spain and now they’re at Nice, France, for another hectic few days at the Extreme Sailing Series. ... [more]  

With light winds continuing to dominate on day six of the Davidoff Cool Water Sylt PWA Super Grand Slam, the decision was made to begin the Reno SUP Challenge during the afternoon, which saw twelve teams battling it out in heats of two for a place in tomorrow’s final, to keep the crowds entertained. ... [more]  

Three America's Cup sailors have been named in the top 20 sports earners, in a list published in the New Zealand Herald this week. Topping the list is Sir Russell Coutts with a claimed earnings of $13million. He is just a $1million ahead of an English Premier League player, Winston Reid, and motor racing ace, Scott Dixon. All Black captain, Ritchie McCaw is ranked #5. ... [more]  

Photographer Carlo Borlenghi was on deck for day three of Les Voiles de Saint Tropez to capture these stunning images of the action. ... [more]  

Melges 32 World Championship - Prepare for off-the-charts action by International Melges 32 Class Association
Entering its sixth World Championship season, the International Melges 32 Class Association has raced at arguably every world-class venue on the globe, has seen the most respected pro and amateur sailors on its courses and most importantly, learned valuable lessons of what owners and sailors want so that the Melges 32 continues to be strongest one design grand prix sportboat on the planet. ... [more]  

The IFDS Rankings for Paralympic Classes have been released. It's a British 1-2 at the top of the 2.4mR Rankings with Megan Pascoe at world number one and Helena Lucas at world number two. 2014 World Champion Heiko Kroger (GER) sits at world number seven but counts less regattas than those above him. ... [more]  

The International Sailing Federation (ISAF) and Rolex are happy to reveal the Nominees for the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards 2014. ISAF received nominations for the 2014 Awards from across the world for sailors representing all aspects of the sport. ... [more]  

Like the name implies, the goal of the boater-funded BoatUS Foundation for Boating Safety and Clean Water is to educate boaters about safe and clean boating. The Foundation is looking to fund Grassroots Grant projects that utilize new, innovative approaches that encourage safe and clean boating among the boating public. ... [more]  

The 35th edition of the Rolex Middle Sea Race is fast approaching and appears likely to rewrite the record books. Entries are shortly due to close and the Royal Malta Yacht Club is already bracing itself for the biggest fleet to grace its island home since the Great Siege of 1565. The Ottoman Armada of 450 years ago was recorded to be 193 in strength. ... [more]  

The Notice of Race for ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, scheduled for 25-31 January 2015, has been released. On-line entry will open on 10 November 2014. The deadline for priority entries with regards to quotas is 5 December 2014. Entries must be received no later than 5 January 2015 to qualify for early entry. ... [more]  

A stellar list of just under 100 broadcasters has been lined up to showcase the world’s toughest ocean challenge, the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, to a new global audience of fans. The 12th edition has offered channels a line-up of a new 39-part weekly half-hour show plus special short bespoke features. ... [more]  

Photographer Eugenia Bakunova of leading Russian website www.mainsail.ru was on the water at Les Voiles de Saint Tropez on the French Riveria , and provided this gallery of images of the classics and other yachts racing on Day 2 ... [more]  

New Ragamuffin 100 emerges from the hull build in Nowra *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
Ragamuffin 100, which started out as a modified Elliott design, Maximus, is another supermaxi undergoing a major rebuild or retrofit. Across the Tasman, the new Ragamuffin 100 will be virtually a new boat with a a new hull design by Andy Dovell / Syd Fischer / David Witt. The hull mould and shell was built by Innovation Composites at the Nowra facility. ... [more]  

Southern Spars ships the world's tallest masts by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz
Leading world sparmaker, Southern Spars, has shipped two spars for a new 85 metre ketch. The superyacht will carry two 93metre masts which will be the world’s tallest rigs on one gigantic yacht. ... [more]  

Professional sailing photographers from all over the world are invited to join the Mirabaud Yacht Racing Image award 2014. Started in 2009, the Mirabaud Yacht Racing Image is the world’s premier photography competition dedicated to the sport of sailing. The prestigious trophy will be awarded during the World Yacht Racing Forum in Barcelona, on December 11, 2014. ... [more]  

David Kellett (AUS) is to be awarded the ISAF Beppe Croce Trophy which honours an individual for their outstanding voluntary contribution to the sport of sailing. The ISAF Beppe Croce Trophy, first presented in 1988 in memory of Beppe Croce, the ISAF President from 1969 to 1986, will be presented to Kellett at the 2014 ISAF Annual Conference in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. ... [more]  

After being graced with plenty of late summer sunshine during the opening days of the event, more autumnal weather moved in on the fifth day of the Davidoff Cool Water Sylt PWA Super Grand Slam with grey skies and infrequent showers. Unfortunately though the light winds continued as the sailors endured another lay day. ... [more]  

In a move that is expected to benefit recreational boaters, on Oct. 22 the US Coast Guard will drop the current life jacket type code scheme -- Type I, II, III, IV and V -- that has been used for years to label and differentiate the types of life jackets and their specific use. ... [more]  

Kate Nota and her team onboard the J/111 Odyssey won the Ripple Effect Short Video Contest, which was part of the Ida Lewis Distance Race this summer (August 15). ... [more]  

The largest Laser World Championship in history will be taking place on the south coast of France when 515 sailors, representing 36 different countries, begin racing on October 5 to open the 2014 Audi Laser Masters’ World Championships. The Laser remains one of the best and most popular boats worldwide in which to enjoy the sport of sailing. ... [more]  

Carlo Borlenghi was back on the water for day two at Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez to capture these images. ... [more]  

It has been an interesting journey so far for the Chinese team in the Volvo Ocean Race, Dongfeng Race Team. Approximately 10 months ago this team set out on a mission to select and train Chinese recruits in the hope that they would be ‘race ready’ for the start of leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race fans can now carry the world’s toughest ocean race in their pocket, thanks to the launch of a new official mobile app. Developed for both iOS and Android systems, the app is available for download from the App Store and Google Play now – and boasts a host of exciting features which will allow users to be closer to the on-water adventure than ever before. ... [more]  

Race teams planning next season’s calendar could do worse than sign up for the Mount Gay Round Barbados Race Series 2015 which runs from 16-24 January. This event, which kick starts the Caribbean race season, was re-launched in 2014 with a new race format and plenty of record-breaking opportunities. It proved such a success that an even bigger entry is expected in 2015. ... [more]  

Photographer Eugenia Bakunova of leading Russian website www.mainsail.ru was on the water at Les Voiles de Saint Tropez on the French Riveria , and provided this gallery of images of the classics and other yachts racing ... [more]  

Sunset+Vine|APP, the Oxford-based unit of the multi-award winning UK independent TV sports production and media company Sunset+Vine, has helped ISAF smash all previous broadcaster records for the recent Santander 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championships. ... [more]  

2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup - Melbourne - Don’t forget to enter the ISAF Sailing World Cup – Melbourne. There are only two days left to take advantage of the discounted entry price offer. ... [more]  

2014 12 Metre North American Championships - Two days of a northerly (first strong, then light) and one day of a building southwesterly put six 12 Metre yachts to the test at their North American Championships, which were held off Newport, R.I. over September 26-28. Gunther Buerman’s (Newport, R.I.) KZ-3 and Dennis Williams’ (Hobe Sound, Fla.) Victory ’83 defended their titles ... [more]  

The waiting game continued on day four of the Davidoff Cool Water Sylt PWA Super Grand Slam as the light winds continued. Over the course of the day a few sailors took the opportunity to make the most of the small waves on offer, either surfing or SUPping. After spending the day on hold the sailors were released at 4:30pm. ... [more]  

Platu 25 World Championship - Euz II Monella Vagabonda wins again
Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez - Day 1 images by Carlo Borlenghi
Les Voiles de Saint Tropez - Day 1 action shots by Ingrid Abery
U.S. Team Racing Championship - Ladies and Gentlemen victorious +Video
National Sailing Hall of Fame inducts eight
2016 ISAF Youth Match Racing Worlds - Bid guidelines now published
Volvo Ocean Race: Last medical training for the onboard sailors +Video
2014 Melges 20 Pacific Coast Championship - Images by Erik Simonson
J/105 North American Champs- Rod Wilmer and Terry McLaughlin succeeds
Extreme Sailing Series: Burling and Tuke back on board for Nice Act
2014 Buddy Melges Challenge - Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen wins US event
America's Cup: Oracle Team USA's AC72 takes to the streets
Alpari World Match Racing Tour - Canfield wins first Dutch Match Cup
Pantaenius and Camper & Nicholsons Marinas become strategic partners
Kite Foil Gold Cup Australia 2014 – Day two video
Bart's Bash: Update and Video - Information overload!
2014 U.S. Team Racing Championship - Day 2
2014 Buddy Melges Challenge - USA leads Denmark in Sheboygan final
2014 U.S. Adult Sailing Championship - Benz Faget wins third mallory
J/105 North American Champ - Wilmer/McLaughlin team maintain advantage
Images from Cannes: Régates Royales – Trophée Panerai   
Régates Royales – Trophée Panerai: Cannes at its best   
Dutch Match Cup - Gilmour keeps clean sheet in Lelystad   
Dutch Match Cup - GAC Pindar through to fifth consecutive semi-final   
Hobie 16 Open North Americans and 2015 Pan Am Games qualifier overall   
Volvo Ocean Race - Frostad on Boat Design and final changes (Part II) *Feature   
Volvo Ocean Race 10 days to go – Frostad on cultural change (Part I) *Feature   
2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race on NBC Sports Network in the U.S.   
2014 J/24 World Championship - Will Welles’ Cougar clinches   
2014 Buddy Melges Challenge - Meldgaard and Le Berre ready for semis   
2014 U.S. Adult Sailing Championship - Day 3   
2014 U.S. Team Racing Championship - Day 1 + Video   
America's Cup: Then and now - Coutts on why Oracle won, and the Venue   
Byte CII World Sailing Championship comes to Royal Varuna, Thailand   
Dutch Match Cup: Canfield wins Qualifying, six set for Quarters battle   
12 Metre North Americans - A blast from the America’s Cup past   
2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup qualification system published   
Volvo Ocean Race: Mapfre named as Spanish team sponsor + Video   
Extreme Sailing Series returns to Nice for the penultimate Act of 2014   
ISAF invites bids for 2016 Women's Match Racing World Championship   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT