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  1. 21 points
    Hi all, First thanks to @Volodia for contacting @clean to unban me. Got kicked in January without warning or reason, probably by the Editor for reasons unknown. I missed sharing with you all the stuff that happened in the infamous leg with a MOB, mast overboard and the close call win by Bouwe who finally got his mojo back. All I have to do now is to go through 400+ posts to catch up a bit. SC, make that a "Schakel" - it's a small open boat class designed in 1961 in The Netherlands made out of multiplex. https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schakel_(zeilboot) Get me on that list! And make sure that the Editor reads it too
  2. 18 points
    We're not the important constituency right now. The MOB, the family, his teammates, the other boats. If delaying us finding out the outcome by even one minute means they can devote that minute to SAR coordination and increase his chances of being found then I'll take not finding out for a year.
  3. 18 points
    Sure, there are some nice safe-for-special-widdle-snowflakes sailing web sites. On some of them, you can get decent advice from some real sailors, and of course the carefully vetted comments of armchair admirals. But if you actually read this thread for content, you'll find that you've already gotten some real advice Here on Sailing Anarchy, you get guys who have sailed around the world, guys who have sailed in world championships, sailmakers, delivery skippers. naval architects, guys who daysail/race around buoys at their home club; and there are a armchair sailors mixed in but they tend to out themselves with not knowing stuff that real sailors know. You get somebody posting a picture "I found this old Polaroid in a drawer from summer vacation in the early 1970s, what kind of boat is that" and not only will a dozen guys know what kind of boat it is, the guy who was sailing that boat that day chimes in. To quote on of the greatest SA'ers, "this isn't Sailing Nicey-Nice." It's a tough environment for bullshitters. It's a tough environment for thin-skinned wanna-bees. It's often funny as shit though. Your nigger comment was not funny. If you actually want to learn, swallow some pride and pull up a chair. If not, go fuck yourself. If you ever actually sail offshore, you'll find that the sea is less forgiving than we are. FB- Doug
  4. 17 points
    Brian has been well respected at times, and had participated in the Whitbread, managed teams, and organised races. However he has become increasingly bitter as he has become less relevant. He threatened to sue, maybe he is still trying to, his business partner from the GOC. As far as I can tell that has gone nowhere. The book he wrote about having the race stolen from him seems to have gone the same way. He is evenly balanced, having a chip on both shoulders, and seems to find verification in spouting mistimed, ill informed, badly researched, and badly written, drivel in an attempt to stay relevant. He knows full well that with a case like this there will be an official enquiry. No doubt he will try and get involved with that as he desperately clings to the yachting industry. As others have pointed out he uses his articles to show that he still counts by saying 'told you so', despite the fact that he often contradicts himself. The fact that he has used the death of a colleague, and friend, as a way of continuing his clutch on the sailing industry is frankly disgusting, and maybe slightly unhinged.
  5. 15 points
    Actually, IMPROBABLE's tiller was 7', laminated of Kauri like the rest of her hull. In breeze-on conditions under spinny, it took 2, even 3 drivers pushing and pulling on opposite sides of the tiller. In the '71 Fastnet, running back from the Rock in a SW gale, we were the only boat to carry a spinnaker the whole way, Ron Holland, Commodore Tompkins, Dave Wahle and myself power assisting each other at the Red Rocket's helm. No roundups, the only Admirals's Cup boat we couldn't catch was the well sailed RAGAMUFFIN, overall Fastnet winner. We had some sterling racing Down Under in '73-'74 against the likes of INCA, APOLLO, RAGS, LOVE&WAR, QUICKSILVER, PROSPECT of WHITBY, RUNAWAY, et.all. But the really good stuff was against D'arcy's 45 foot TEQUILA, which was the same speed as IMPROBABLE and well sailed by the entire Whiting family and long time crew. As IMPROBABLE's skipper I had a front row seat to D'arcy Whiting's bottomless supply of practical jokes, many on himself. The first was the day TEQUILA arrived in Sydney after a Trans-Tasman delivery, her entire cabin floor stacked 3 high with cases of beer for the anticipated Aussie Christmas beer strike before the S2H. D'arcy brought TEQUILA into the CCA docks under a good head of steam, throwing her into reverse at the last moment. Only there was no reverse. We watched in astonishment as TEQUILA rode up and over the dock like an ice-breaker. No problem. D'arcy and crew got TEQUILA backed off the splinters in time to host the entire yacht division of the uniformed Sydney customs crew of 8 for a little piss up in TEQUILA's cockpit. They were expecting TEQUILA's arrival with great anticipation! A few weeks later, after the 1973 S2H, TEQUILA and IMPROBABLE faced off in the Hobart-Auckland Race, D'arcy and crew were set on breaking KIALOA II's record of 8 day's 2 hours. TEQUILA and IMPROBABLE had a ding-dong battle out the Derwent, running side by side under spinnaker. Then we saw it ahead, the mean looking, low clouds of an incipient Southerly Buster moving quickly our way. Even though running in a pleasant NW breeze, we let TEQUILA escape ahead while double reefing and changing to the #5 jib on IMPROBABLE. As the Southerly Buster hit, we could just see TEQUILA a mile ahead pirouette under spinnaker, and take off downwind, in the wrong direction, up the Derwent, bow wave foaming. IMPROBABLE and TEQUILA passed going in opposite directions, about 5 boat lengths apart .....I could clearly see D'arcy frozen at the wheel, struggling to control TEQUILA while her crew figured out what to do to get the spinnaker down and the boat turned around. That was the last we saw of TEQUILA. In typical rugged Tasman conditions, IMPROBABLE set a new, unofficial record from Hobart to Cape Reinga of 7 days, and finished off Auckland Harbor's Orakei Wharf at sunrise. There was a welcoming crowd of thousands, and we were live on the radio. I'd never seen anything like it. In answer to some of the above questions, IMPROBABLE's transom rudder, built by New Zealand surfboard shaper Rodney Davidson, was scrapped after her win in the '73 Jamaica Race. We were headed to England as a 1 boat Admiral's Cup Team representing New Zealand, and the new IOR rule did not treat the transom rudder with any favor. IMPROBABLE was impounded in CUBA by Fidel's troops when her trans-Atlantic delivery skipper, Ron Holland, cut the western tip and got into local waters for a better view. Fortunately, Ron's wife, Laurel, had a supply of Playboys for just such an eventuality, a bribe ensued, and IMPROBABLE and crew got the hell out of there. NEW WORLD, George Kiskaddon's 68 foot John Spencer designed ultra light schooner, was lost on a reef in Micronesia sometime in the late 70's under new ownership.
  6. 15 points
    Suggestions: Don't quote the troll. You will be quickly dealt with by Jack and/or Mad. Try to read what was written above thread before posting. Not doing so is called a Schackel. Direct all VOR related factual questions to Stief and all technical questions to Francis Vaughn. Try to sync with Jack's posting cycle. Earlier the better. Especially avoid contact at the end of a 24 hour binge. Also, avoid making lustful comments about Sophie. Use the quote tool to highlight text rather than quoting the whole, sometimes large posts. Some live in remote regions of the world with no running water or bandwidth. Give the newbies a fair shake (unless they are complete douche bags). We need more locals and boots on the ground. When posting drunk, give a heads up please. Shit fights are inevitable. The Ignore Button is your friend. Start a new thread when a topic takes a life of it's own. Some topics are frowned upon including " how wet the boats are" and Brian Handoncock. Oh, and Sophie. Some members are off limits including: Stief, Norbowgirl, Potter, Elisa, Rennmaus, JBC, Shanghai Sailor, Forss for all their much appreciated contributions. The rest can fend for themselves including myself 'who is gonna get shite for writing all this in the first place.
  7. 15 points
    From Scally FB courtesy ForrestDoggy Scallywags never give up! When you’re feeling the pain And you’re sick of the game But you’re young and you’re brave and you’re bright You pick yourself up and dust yourself down Cos it’s the carrying on that’s hard. Scallwags will continue!! Our delivery crew have arrived and we are now in a race against the clock to make the start in Brazil for the next leg. We are all hurt but we are not out!! Scallywags never ever give up!! We will make the start we will look after each other we will finish the race and do the best job we can for all Scallywags in John’s memory and honor. On behalf of all the team I would like to thank all our supporters for all the messages of support it has helped us enormously in this difficult time. Witty
  8. 15 points
    I built and sold Optimists for 20 years. They are simultaneously the best and worst boats in the world. On the good side, they are absolutely the best boat to sit 5 year olds inside and start them on the journey of going out and coming back. Unlike so many other boat, the Opitimist seems to like children. It takes care of them lie a good dog. The first thing a kid does is sit down in the back corner and pull the stick towards him. This starts a circle of tubes and tacks and some panic in our youngster, but unlike almost every other boat, it doesn't llead to an immediate capsize with the boat on top. This is due to four things, the low rig, the short daggerboard and the wide hard- chine of the bottom and generous freeboard. I don't know how much actual study Clark Mills did for this design, or whether he just thought it up around the optimal use of plywood, but he got it spot on. As the boat heels, there is enough buoyancy in the sides and chimes to pick the daggerboard almost clear of the water without the gunwales going under and the boat swamping. The boat skids to leeward instead of capsizing, and the rig is low enough to not compound the problem. So our lovely child gets a little spooked, and has stop screaming long enough to learn that you hold the stick in the middle when you want to go straight. Lesson One. All the little knots are also good for learning about taking care of your boat. Do it wrong, and it matters, but not enough to kill you. Then some brain box says we ought to race the little fuckers and everything goes to shit. Out nice little adventures turns into dodgeball and the most aggressive bully's win. The kids that will aim their boats anywhere and yell at others to get out of the way or they will hit them and throw them out of the race. Perversely, we tell these bully's that they are great sailors and give them trophies. The Moms and Dads in the rest of the fleet, who probably really like sailing and really want their kids to like it to, do what all parents do. They don't call the winners dickheads, but tell their kids to keep at it and try harder. They back this up by looking for coaches who can help their child compete, and they make sure that their child has all the tools and is not being disadvantaged because of something they did or didn't buy. They are told all sorts of crap.... Langes are lighter in the ends....McLaughlin uses uncrimped knitted fabric for better torsional stiffness.... you have to have 7000 series aluminum masts....our new sail is so much faster. The coaches are all former bullies, so you can guess what happens, by 12 years old most of the kids have been convinced that they suck at sailing. By this age they have also become convinced that they suck at soccer, baseball, tennis, swimming, rugby, basketball and indoor lacrosse. They fear they will suck at everything in life, and they haven't even reached puberty and dealt with pimples. Is it any wonder they don't stick around? The parents are exhausted and feel like they have been raped. The promise never to buy their kid another boat. If they continue to sail, they can use the Club 420s, or crew on someone else's yacht. They can feel OK because they know enough about sailing to talk to a sailing boss, or go for a day sail on a clients yacht without calling a sail a sheet. My kids all sailed used of rejected boats with left over sails and equipment. In part this was driven by my reluctance to have the "Sons of Vanguard" sailing around in pristine equipment and either being perceived as entitled pricks or actually acting like entitled pricks. We only raced on Narragansett Bay and avoided the whole traveling bit. I relented when the North Americans were going to be held on the Bay, and bought them "standard" equipment. Their results were better sailing new boats than sailing the beaters, so after all, equipment helps. In the US we are obsessed with prodigy. We want to be the first ones to see a great one. As part of our outsourcing of parenting to dozens of service providers ( like coaches, music and dance instructors, academic enrichment etc) we inevitably hope that our kids show up at the top of something. Sailing is one sport where you don't have to be great at it when you are 8 to be very good at it when you are 30. So the very competive nature of the Optimist class actually works in opposition to the goal of building the sport of competitive sailing. I couldn't do anything about it then, and I don't think we could do anything about it now. I like the approach that Nevin Sayre has charted with the BIC open. I don't think much of the boat design, but the unregatta that emphasizes skill building and fun seems like a healthy alternative. SHC
  9. 14 points
    I know that each of us gets caught up life - jobs, kids, significant others, family, etc. But one thing that we all manage to have time for is sailing. Whether it's racing, or cruising or just a little bay sail, we always find the time. Sure, it's likely not ever enough time, but we make it happen. We hang out on boats, in yacht club bars, on the docks. We talk on the phone about it with our fellow sailors, we e-mail, FB, Instagram. Like crack, we seemingly can never get enough! But the one place that almost everyone goes is online. There are a few choices, but for 19 years now, you have faithfully come to Sailing Anarchy for your sailing fix. I simply cannot express how much that means to us. Sure, we don't cover everything (stay tuned for news on that), and often we offend, insult and drive you crazy. Yet you anarchists always stay with us, and that is just incredible. Seriously, you cannot understand how much we appreciate that. With few exceptions, we have strived to be the best, the most interesting, and entertaining sailing site out there. We know that your time gets divided up, and that there are many places to go on the intertubes. You so often choose us and before you call me a whimpering pussy, I want to offer a sincere and heartfelt thank you to all of you who help make this place what it is. From our wild-ass forums, to sending in stories and pictures and videos from your corner of the world, we thank you. As honest as I can be, thank you for participating, contributing and supporting Sailing Anarchy. And after 19 years, we can't imagine not doing this with y'all. Nearly every single day, we love it. And we are thankful that you do too. - ed.
  10. 14 points
    Just to give my tuppence worth on Charlie and Mark. The team used up all their reserves, and had to go cap in hand for more, in order to get the boat back on the water in Auckland. There was a flight out of the Falklands 3 hours after they hit dry land, and the next flight is a week later. They obviously realised they would need to be hitting the phones and email hard to raise new funds and sort out insurance...but they don't have either mobiles or computers with them. So I completely understand why they chose to do what they did. The rest of the crew are now in Brazil, or at home, and a delivery crew is in place. I don't see any problem with their decision making. As a crew member I would not want the teams two main fund raisers sat on an island with limited comms. Get them ashore to their address books as fast as possible.
  11. 14 points
    Vestas Some pics. New rig, as I said; stumpy, and a couple of Stanley regulars. Photos from a Facebook post by Robin C. Goodwin.
  12. 14 points
    I will begin by quoting Peter Finch from the movie Network, "I'm mad as hell, and I'm not going to take it anymore!" Take anymore of what? Simple. Mr Brian Hancock. I will put aside the appalling timing of his article and the extreme hurt he has caused to not just those close to John Fisher but the wider sailing community. I will put aside his insinuation that the crews search and rescue mission ended prematualy. I will put aside his entire viewpoint being founded solely on speculation that Mr Fisher was washed overboard, whereas it came to light yesterday, courtesy of a statement from the Scallywag team, that Mr Fisher was in fact not "washed off" the vessel, but "knocked off" by the boom. However what I won't put aside is that he keeps packaging in a guilded framework of self promotion that the sailing community should sit up and have regard for what he has to say. The experience to back this up conveinantly ignores the fact that he has never stepped foot on a VO65 and his last Southern Ocean racing outing was 30 years ago in the maxi leadmine "Fazi" that needed a snorkle. Unfortunately some of you support his utterences, such as the VO65 being "a death trap waiting to happen", and that "the management team at VOR are complicit in the death of John Fisher". So if you are one of Hancock's new deciples maybe you should also give thought to his viewpoint that tethers and Personal Floation Devices (PFD's) and by extension, intergral strobe lights and Personel Locator Beacons (PLB's) etc are detrimental to safety at sea!! That can't be right I can hear you saying, our new messiah on safety doesn't believe that. Well in his own words. "This time it’s about the use of life harnesses. Yup as you might imagine I am not really big on them. I think that they give sailors a false sense of security. I have always been a “one hand for the task, one hand for the boat” kind of guy. Knowing that you are not clipped on heightens your awareness. Makes you super sensitive to your surroundings". "Seriously, it’s time we all started to think for ourselves again. What has happened to us? Why do we all just follow along like a bunch of sheep? It’s not just pfd’s, it’s everything". It seems Hancock draws his inspiration on shipboard safety from a brother who lives in the bush in Botswana and never carries a gun even though it’s wildest Africa. His logic is you carry a gun you get careless. You know that you have a gun there to bail you out if you get in trouble. It seems without a gun and in sailings case, without a PFD and tether, your senses are heightened according to Hancock. He claims you are then very aware of your surroundings and you never take chances, relying on your senses to become honed and heightened. Maybe when his brother confronts a lion he goes about talking it to death with gobblygook like his sailing sibling? If Hancock was advocating the message "stay on board otherwise your potentially dead", no one would disagree. However to go on and effectively say if your dead why bother doning a tether and PFD in the first place because "awareness" without that gear provides greater protection! That is loonyspeak. I will leave it to you to decide where Hancock's views lie in the ongoing discussions, evolution and actions by the world sailing community to improve safety in our sport. My thinking is his views belong in a piece of his anatomy used when sitting down. References http://sailinganarchy.com/2018/03/27/extreme-anger/ http://sailinganarchy.com/2015/10/25/youre-pathetic/ http://sailinganarchy.com/2016/09/16/death-threat-anyone/ Fazi..note low freeboard and deck layout from an era that Hancock considers a safety benchmark and superior to the modern VO65.
  13. 14 points
    extreme sadness It’s been a seriously tough few days for the 65 sailors and 7 OBR’s ripping through the Southern Ocean right now in the Volvo Ocean Race. It’s cold, wet and rough (it goes without saying) but unless you have experienced it personally, it’s hard to portray the extra edge that competition gives this already tough environment. As much as we all look forward to getting ‘down south’ there isn’t one person out there who isn’t counting the hours until it’s done. That said, as tough as it has been for the fleet in general, nothing will compare to the torment that John Fisher’s family will have endured and the sadness and guilt that all his fellow crew members will be dealing with right now. We have lost a friend, but they have lost a husband, a father and a crewmate. I have spent much of the last year working alongside John, clocking up thousands of miles together, whilst battling through good and bad times both on and off the water, and he was the most supportive, amiable and steadfast friend and colleague you could wish for. Through thick and thin he propped us all up with his unwavering optimism and professionalism. Everybody’s personal story around their decision to compete in these events is different but watching him live out his dream took me back twenty-five years to when I did my first race and it saddens me beyond belief, that I won’t be able to shake his hand at the end of it. This is not the last time I will pay my respects, but for now ‘Fish’, I salute you and all you stood for, thank you for everything you did for us all and know that you will live long in all our memories …….. These situations are surrounded by emotion and most of it is natural and totally understandable, but it struck me upon reading an article on Sailing Anarchy (extreme anger) that the further removed you are from the situation, the less right you have to express it, especially when it’s not grief or sadness. Anger is the reserve of his wife, children and close family and the rest of us owe it to them to show our respect and then politely take a back seat. The very last thing I want is a ‘war of words’ but to quote the author I too “have earned the right to have an opinion” and when the time is right and in the right circumstances I will express mine. There is a huge number of unknowns around this incident, and when the crew complete the, not insignificant, task of getting themselves ashore with their minds still in one piece there will be the appropriate de-briefs and eventually we can all learn what happened and collectively make the process of ocean racing safer. This process has been going on for decades and, especially in recent years, the progress made in the overall safety of the event is considerable, despite the boats being quicker and more spectacular. I respect the author for his time at sea, much of which was in way riskier boats than we have now and before the extensive training, equipment and monitoring of the current race but I don’t think it’s right to apportion blame at this early stage especially without more detail. I strongly disagree that the boats themselves, the designers of those boats, or those that organize the race have avoided responsibility or done anything that puts sailors lives at risk. Aspects can be improved of course, but the implication that the boats are too dangerous is unfounded and the idea that anyone is complicit in John’s death is offensive to a great many of us that trust in those same boats, people and procedures when we put to sea. None of us are stupid and if the situation was as described we would be negligent in our duties to our families and that is simply not the case. The sport itself is inherently dangerous, we all acknowledge that, but we do so knowing that the equipment, procedures and, most importantly, our team mates mitigate that risk to an acceptable level and as competitors we all make a conscious decision to leave the dock. I can never quite explain why I do what I do and indeed the last 24 hours have made me think even more about those motives, but I do know that if the risk was somehow completely removed then the attraction would be gone. There will be some that don’t agree, and they are entitled to their opinions; there will be some that disagree with my view on the safety of these boats and I respect them too, but please let’s not express polarizing views on potential causes in the wake of a man’s death without being in full possession of the facts. I am not trying to push the opposite view or promote debate, and don’t particularly concern myself with the future of the but am keen that we draw proper conclusions based on evidence. There have been fatalities at sea over the course of this race, and each one is tragic and devastating in equal measure. If you look the VOR / Whitbread race four competitors lost their lives in the earlier races with three in the first race 1973 and one in 1989. Four more events and fifteen years passed until Hans Horrevoets was sadly lost approaching the UK in 2006 and now we face another tragedy twelve years on. I am not happy with that safety record and one life lost is one too many but until the right people can make the right decisions based on the facts it’s simply pointless to try and suppose what would have saved his life. The implication that it’s getting more dangerous is not supported in evidence. The deeper question is ‘why’ we choose to compete rather than how. We could have safer boats, safer routes and many other protections but at some point, it simply wouldn’t be worth doing. I don’t for a moment underestimate the significance of this tragedy and it’s truthfully shaken me to my core but it’s important to recognize that no-one is being forced to go out there and we all do it with a deep and well understood acceptance of the risk. I am not angry, I am deeply saddened, and I feel desperately sorry for his loved ones to whom I offer my sincere condolences Steve Hayles
  14. 14 points
    I spent a bit of time having a look at the Hong Hong Marine Accident Investigation and Shipping Security Policy Branch site. They provide access to reports and statistics of accidents here. Since they investigate accidents of all HK registered vessels there are accidents outside HK waters as well. But most seem to be HK waters accidents. Like accident investigations elsewhere, they don't lay blame, and act to find facts, contributory factors, and make recommendations. Apportion of blame is for courts. It seems that most incidents do not make it to court. In general one would expect that the public prosecutor would need to be satisfied that there was a good chance criminal negligence was involved in order to lay charges, or that another party wanted to take civil action for damages. If either of these happened the MAISSPB report might come into play, although this is not a given. Some countries disallow reports being used in actions. I don't know about HK. Reports of incidents seem to take about a year to complete. Looking at a few collisions between fishing vessels and other vessels the conclusions from the investigation are pretty repetitive. Mostly they conclude that both boats failed to keep adequate lookout and thus breached the COLREGS. In most respects this is hard to duck. The investigations look at the situation and conclude that no matter what the circumstances (which might include a storm, rain, fog) both boats should have adapted to the conditions and the accident should have been avoidable. For instance, from The collision between the Hong Kong registered vessel “Shin Chun” and the Taiwanese fishing vessel on the approaching road of Kaohsiung, Taiwan on 29 February 2016 The investigation found that the main contributory factors of the accident were the failure of both vessels to maintain a proper look-out in compliance with the requirements of rule 5 of COLREGS (Look-out). Consequently, both vessels did not realize the imminent risk of collision before the collision. The fishing vessel, being the give-way vessel in a cross situation, did not take any action to avoid the collision. The container vessel, being the stand-on vessel in a crossing situation, did not take her own action to avoid collision in an ample time while the give-way vessel did not take proper avoiding action. Or this report, where a fishing vessel hit a smaller pleasure craft with loss of life. Most reports have a very similar tone and conclusions. Mostly I think this gives us a clue about what the investigation's conclusions will look like.
  15. 13 points
    That was awesome to watch. (I still haven't seen the Leg 11 dock-in and interview videos; I'm gonna watch those next.) But in terms of the Raw Content ocean leg videos, the spreadsheet is (I think) finished. 1,354 videos described and tagged. Yay! :-)
  16. 13 points
    30 knot Phantom Drone launch.
  17. 13 points
    What an amazing sport! I was in a regatta this weekend and when I think about it, it kind of blows me away how lucky I am to participate. I'm out there in my $1,000 Sunfish in a contest that cost me $20 to enter including the meal! To top it off there is a guy driving around in a powerboat giving away PBRs and thanks me for coming out to play! Great competition, great comradery, good wind, good workout-this sport rocks. I have been sailing a long time, but just started racing small boats a few years ago. So glad I found it. And it doesn't have to be expensive. I'm sure my cheapo boat will go just as fast as the next one if I ever learn to sail it well. Fuck all the threads about why people don't sail-let's hear why you do. Cheers, Eric
  18. 13 points
    If someone would like to start a separate thread about John Fisher and/or about what VOR can/might/should do to avoid future similar incidents, that might be a good idea. I don't personally mind that discussion staying in the VOR Leg thread, but I also don't mind if it gets split out into a separate thread so that the original thread can refocus on the boats still racing. Very difficult to grapple with this tragedy. But I'd really like us to split out any discussion of whether Hancock is right or wrong, a knowledgeable expert or a pompous ass, etc, into a separate thread. It really bothers me that every tragedy turns into a statement from Hancock on the front page railing against everyone who coulda or shoulda done something better or differently. It's very easy in any tragedy for anyone to declare what could or should have been done differently with 20/20 hindsight, and I feel that doing it immediately and publicly while emotions still run high is in poor taste, even if you're right. It also really bothers me, specifically, that he said "but after two hours of searching in very brutal conditions they gave up". I don't have firm facts, but my impression from the facts we've obtained so far is that they searched for 7-9 hours, until dark, and then they were ordered to move on for their own safety. It was hopeless by the time they stopped, and probably had been for hours. It was probably hopeless within an hour in those conditions. But he felt entitled to declare in a statement published on a major website's front page that the MOB's crew quit after 2 hours. Then he made it somewhat about himself, which is reprehensible under the circumstances: "OK now you can have a go at me all you want. Call me Brian Handjob or Blowhard Hancock but I have earned the right to have an opinion. I have sailed those waters many times and know what it’s like when a cold, gray cresting wave comes up from behind to send you hurtling down the front of it." I've written many emails (and forum posts) where I stopped at the end and said to myself "Is this a good idea to send/post?" and then hit delete instead. That's the moment where a statement like Hancock's comes in, if you decide to proceed. You start thinking "People won't like this, I need to defend myself in advance", when the right decision is "Let me delete this, or save it to drafts, edit it later, and post something more appropriate at a more appropriate time". He chose to pre-defend himself and post. So let me ask this: - Can we please refrain from juvenile personal insults toward Mr. Hancock? That would feed directly into his pre-emptive defense. I'm hoping we can keep criticism relatively mature. (I realize that's a tall order here) - Can someone please educate me and others like me on his resume? I assume its true he's been through the southern ocean, but I hadn't heard of him before he started getting SA front page articles and associated forum thrashings. Is he a respected guru on an international board of offshore safety after having done two Vendee's and three VORs, or something like that? - Anyone have any idea why SA puts whatever he wants to say on the front page, even if he's disparaging the crew of a boat that just lost a mate and searched for hours in heinous conditions?
  19. 13 points
    Sorry but I have to call it a early night. But before I go. Hey John Fisher you now own a bit of space just south of the 50th parallel in the Southern Ocean. You will I know be keeping a watchful eye from on high over anyone who dares follow you down there and with rag up....particularly those carrying the carbon kind. Cheers mate.
  20. 12 points
    G'day all! Sorry to miss all this VOR excitement, been catching up on many good posts and checked the tracker for the first time in this leg this afternoon Just arrived on the French island of Futuna after a 250nm passage from Fiji in never more 10 knots of wind, much like the the Volvo earlier in this leg. And dragging along a heavy duty Singer sewing machine that has seen 2 Whitbreads, as well as a Lirakus ball sqeezer, personal strobe lights, and tons of sailcloth etc. did not help either. Neither did all the barnacles on the bottom of the keel. We also had our own fight with one big cloud that managed to sail around us, we called that a karma cloud, see picture by our 16 yr old Fijian OBR: The return trip looks like much of the same light weather, so the Live tracker is waisted on me for a little longer. Anyway, kudos to the VOR for that much anticipated move. See you soon, FB.
  21. 12 points
    Images of MAPFRE repairs https://infosailing.photoshelter.com/gallery-image/RACING-EN-REGATA/G0000lqfd_SovwXg/I00009gn3M6rjzjg/C0000Y503PSgYSK8
  22. 12 points
    http://sailinganarchy.com/2018/03/28/extreme-sadness/ extreme sadness It’s been a seriously tough few days for the 65 sailors and 7 OBR’s ripping through the Southern Ocean right now in the Volvo Ocean Race. It’s cold, wet and rough (it goes without saying) but unless you have experienced it personally, it’s hard to portray the extra edge that competition gives this already tough environment. As much as we all look forward to getting ‘down south’ there isn’t one person out there who isn’t counting the hours until it’s done. That said, as tough as it has been for the fleet in general, nothing will compare to the torment that John Fisher’s family will have endured and the sadness and guilt that all his fellow crew members will be dealing with right now. We have lost a friend, but they have lost a husband, a father and a crewmate. I have spent much of the last year working alongside John, clocking up thousands of miles together, whilst battling through good and bad times both on and off the water, and he was the most supportive, amiable and steadfast friend and colleague you could wish for. Through thick and thin he propped us all up with his unwavering optimism and professionalism. Everybody’s personal story around their decision to compete in these events is different but watching him live out his dream took me back twenty-five years to when I did my first race and it saddens me beyond belief, that I won’t be able to shake his hand at the end of it. This is not the last time I will pay my respects, but for now ‘Fish’, I salute you and all you stood for, thank you for everything you did for us all and know that you will live long in all our memories …….. These situations are surrounded by emotion and most of it is natural and totally understandable, but it struck me upon reading an article on Sailing Anarchy (extreme anger) that the further removed you are from the situation, the less right you have to express it, especially when it’s not grief or sadness. Anger is the reserve of his wife, children and close family and the rest of us owe it to them to show our respect and then politely take a back seat. The very last thing I want is a ‘war of words’ but to quote the author I too “have earned the right to have an opinion” and when the time is right and in the right circumstances I will express mine. There is a huge number of unknowns around this incident, and when the crew complete the, not insignificant, task of getting themselves ashore with their minds still in one piece there will be the appropriate de-briefs and eventually we can all learn what happened and collectively make the process of ocean racing safer. This process has been going on for decades and, especially in recent years, the progress made in the overall safety of the event is considerable, despite the boats being quicker and more spectacular. I respect the author for his time at sea, much of which was in way riskier boats than we have now and before the extensive training, equipment and monitoring of the current race but I don’t think it’s right to apportion blame at this early stage especially without more detail. I strongly disagree that the boats themselves, the designers of those boats, or those that organize the race have avoided responsibility or done anything that puts sailors lives at risk. Aspects can be improved of course, but the implication that the boats are too dangerous is unfounded and the idea that anyone is complicit in John’s death is offensive to a great many of us that trust in those same boats, people and procedures when we put to sea. None of us are stupid and if the situation was as described we would be negligent in our duties to our families and that is simply not the case. The sport itself is inherently dangerous, we all acknowledge that, but we do so knowing that the equipment, procedures and, most importantly, our team mates mitigate that risk to an acceptable level and as competitors we all make a conscious decision to leave the dock. I can never quite explain why I do what I do and indeed the last 24 hours have made me think even more about those motives, but I do know that if the risk was somehow completely removed then the attraction would be gone. There will be some that don’t agree, and they are entitled to their opinions; there will be some that disagree with my view on the safety of these boats and I respect them too, but please let’s not express polarizing views on potential causes in the wake of a man’s death without being in full possession of the facts. I am not trying to push the opposite view or promote debate, and don’t particularly concern myself with the future of the but am keen that we draw proper conclusions based on evidence. There have been fatalities at sea over the course of this race, and each one is tragic and devastating in equal measure. If you look the VOR / Whitbread race four competitors lost their lives in the earlier races with three in the first race 1973 and one in 1989. Four more events and fifteen years passed until Hans Horrevoets was sadly lost approaching the UK in 2006 and now we face another tragedy twelve years on. I am not happy with that safety record and one life lost is one too many but until the right people can make the right decisions based on the facts it’s simply pointless to try and suppose what would have saved his life. The implication that it’s getting more dangerous is not supported in evidence. The deeper question is ‘why’ we choose to compete rather than how. We could have safer boats, safer routes and many other protections but at some point, it simply wouldn’t be worth doing. I don’t for a moment underestimate the significance of this tragedy and it’s truthfully shaken me to my core but it’s important to recognize that no-one is being forced to go out there and we all do it with a deep and well understood acceptance of the risk. I am not angry, I am deeply saddened, and I feel desperately sorry for his loved ones to whom I offer my sincere condolences Steve Hayles
  23. 12 points
    I dream about putting him on the boat when they reach Chile, and then force him to say this to their faces. In general, one should never say something about somebody if you can’t tell it to their face. And since he’s as old and experienced as Medusa, he probably will state that he lives by this rule. Of course he doesn’t. But I fantasize about seeing him do that, and then let the team show to HIS face how they feel about the way he has publicly portrayed their rescue effort. I personally want to hurt him. He has said something terrible about people I care about. Innocent people who at the moment can’t answer. I hope they get the chance to meet Hancock.
  24. 12 points
    This is so true. '99 Transpac I was overboard off the bow of the boat, attached by my tether, but no physical way I could get back on deck by myself. The crew were dealing with the kite takedown after I had tripped the tack. They had no idea that I was drowning upside down off the bow with the boat still going 10+, until they had the kite down. Then it was where's Doug? I owe my life to Alan and Davey. But, I also owe my life to that tether. If I had not been clipped to the boat, I likely would not be typing this now.
  25. 12 points
    Yes. Oh god. Why do some people on this forum think that them being updated is a high priority when things like this happens? There is a fucking search and rescue operation going on, and family members that need to be informed first.

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