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Roleur

Pacific Cup 2014 - Q&A, Tips...

346 posts in this topic

Pac Cup vs. Vic-Maui Mid-day Monday reports

 

I seem to remember that there used to be so much more chatter on these big races, and even Spin Cup would generate 5-page threads. I guess no one cares anymore, or they are burned out, or flicked or what?

 

 

2014-07-14_125535.jpg

 

Glad to see Snafu on top of their leaderboard this morning!

 

Would love to have a port - starboard between fleets, ensuing protest, figure out the boat was from "the other" race to Hawaii..... Settled over Mai-Tai's on a neutral island....

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I like it. Mai-Tais at dawn. First team to pass out before the sun sets loses the protest. I think you're onto something here!

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I like it. Mai-Tais at dawn. First team to pass out before the sun sets loses the protest. I think you're onto something here!

I have been know to make sense, or a funny, from time to time

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Day nine, and another day with the Donovan 30 leading double-handed. Bill and Melinda have lead at every 20-hour position report except the second day. Thirsty is making a serious charge, though, and the race isn't over until the finish! Looks like they are finally getting 200+ mile days consistently.

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Day nine, and another day with the Donovan 30 leading double-handed. Bill and Melinda have lead at every 20-hour position report except the second day. Thirsty is making a serious charge, though, and the race isn't over until the finish! Looks like they are finally getting 200+ mile days consistently.

Nice, but you do realize that Bill and Melinda could enter a Cal 20 and still be leading the double handed fleets (yes both fleets) boat for boat. B)

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Lol. Very likely.

 

And now day ten, they are climbing up the overall leader board. Probably not enough. Thirsty, also doing quite well!

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Big race shaping up now between the two J-125's hamachi splitting gybes to come into the islands from the north side. Smart move I think.

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They've got extra equipment and extra water from Cayenne (courtesy of Michael M), plus Will Paxton.

 

They'll be fine. The real question is whether they're faster with alternative steering than California Condor was a few years back ^_^

No, the real question is whether they run out of ciggerettes!

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They've got extra equipment and extra water from Cayenne (courtesy of Michael M), plus Will Paxton.

 

They'll be fine. The real question is whether they're faster with alternative steering than California Condor was a few years back ^_^

 

Here is Jim Antrim's account of that 2010 Pac Cup: http://www.pressure-drop.us/forums/content.php?549-Condor-s-First-Flight-The-2010-Pacific-Cup

 

Four days into the race, past the half way point, they went from doing 20 knots(!) in 22 knots of breeze (average speed: steady 14+) and expecting a first to finish... to breaking _BOTH_ rudders and taking another 8+ days to finish using a Jordan series drogue to steer.

 

We set to work over the next few days, experimenting with different sail combinations, trying to increase speed by reducing the length of drogue, and jury rigging one of the rudders. The drogue length we settled on was shorter than ideal, less than ¼ of the full length, which meant that we had to steer constantly and our course was unstable. “Steering” consisted of playing one leg of the drogue bridle while standing at a winch, ease for a starboard turn, crank like mad for a port turn. The boat swung back and forth drunkenly but our speed was up to around 4 knots and on average we were aimed at Oahu. After a couple days of hard work we had a rudder ready to mount, with gudgeons jury rigged from old cracked and broken pieces and spectra lashing. Would it survive a day or a week? Should we mount it now or save it for the final approach to Hawaii? We decided to go for it. Several frustrating and exhausting attempts to mount the rudder ensued over the next few days. As David said at one point, “It takes three men and a forklift to mount this thing in the boatyard.” Not an easy thing in a seaway to mount a precisely aligned blade and get two pins aligned and inserted. Each time we refined our technique, and waited impatiently for the next lull in the wind and seaway.

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Snafu is having a helluva race.

 

Gilles does all the rigging work on my boat that I don't do, hope he does well.

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Great battle going on between Pyewacket and Scarlett Runner, only a few minutes between them for class and overall. Have seen the lead swap with last two gybes. Outa be an interesting final 200 miles.

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Anyone have an idea what the return weather will be like for boats leaving this week on their own bottom ??.where would one find this info

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Ocean Prediction Center

U of HI

NWS

 

Are you crewing on a delivery?

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Hey Roleur! If you get on line and read this......Aloooha! Welcome to HI. Nicely done. Enjoy the mai tais, jump in the pool to rinse off, and get some sleep. Then we want to hear about the shit that didn't make your blog.

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Hey Roleur! If you get on line and read this......Aloooha! Welcome to HI. Nicely done. Enjoy the mai tais, jump in the pool to rinse off, and get some sleep. Then we want to hear about the shit that didn't make your blog.

 

Nick, it was all there in the blog. In fact, it was far easier to describe the problems we had than the hours of sublime rolling along with the kite up day after day. Boat was great, our prep was good, boat handling was good, route wasn't bad, but we need more heavy air downwind wheel time. We simply weren't very fast in a straight line once the kites went up. Also, we thought we were pushing, but after the dock talk in Kaneohe I realize we were quite conservative compared to those in front of us.

 

Next time... There will be a next time... We'll be 750 pounds lighter, carry bigger kites longer, and be better drivers, handsteering a lot more.

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I read your blog daily. so did my mother btw. Ok so you kind of reigned it in. It was your first one. Trust me, I know what its like. How about your routing etc? Anything you'd do different with a week of contemplation? You also considered pulling the wheel for a tiller. Now that you've done it, what's your opinion for a boat of your size sailed shorthanded? Did the full size dodger get in the way at all? Would you still go with a roller furling genoa, or with hanked on jibs? You know, now that you and Kris are smiling at your trophy, and thinking of a mantel clock...other than be more aggressive longer...what, in the light of your new experience, would you do differently?

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Oh, we have a good list of things we'd do differently, mostly related to us, not the boat. Our route was pretty decent. Very similar to Wolfpack and we sailed a relatively short course compared to most. Our routing can't improve further until we improve our Polars. So, there is that. We should have had a Code 0 and a reaching spinnaker (A3). The tiller would be nice, but not realistic for our boat without a lot of modifications. The big factors are us. We need to drive more and be better at driving, especially with the kite at night. Just need a lot more practice. Our boat handling was really good, so I don't think size will ultimately be a factor. Lastly, we need to know the upper limits of our kites and then work to raise them. As it was we only flew the A2 for about 18 hours. Between our conservative sail selection, not driving enough, and a few avoidable fuckups we added a day to our trip.

 

I have a few more ideas that I will keep to myself. ;)

 

It would also help tremendously for our boat to have a true windy reach and a true trade wind run. I would say the conditions for 2014 could not have been less favorable for a J/120. Light upwind and heavy downwind with no surfable waves was no bueno.

 

The dodger was great. No issues and delightfully warmer in the cold and cooler in the hot.

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Based on your blog it seems like you had a lot of close reaching with the number 2 jib. Do you think a strut that you could mount on the boat to "pole" the jib out to leeward would have been useful?

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We sheeted to the toe rail for much of that and it worked great. I think that day we had our best daily run relative to other Tuesday starters. Second best behind California Condor.

 

Once we cracked off a little more it would have been perfect for a Code 0 or A3. We had a funny old "gennaker" that worked okay for that until we shredded it in a 30 knot flog fest.

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Great job Roleur on the race/hardware! Was great to get to know you guys at RYC, KYC, and follow your progress along during race. Agree there was a lot of reaching. Was useful to have both a heavy and light air reaching kite on the Soup. Not a code 0, but helped with some of the angles we wanted to sail. For fun, grabbed some stuff off the GoPro last week.

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Great job to you Soupers. A division win, even after the rating gyrations ain't too shabby. Not much more you could do with the incredible wind speeds we saw on Day 2 and 3.

 

Super fun chatting with you guys before and after the race. One of the highlights of the whole adventure. Hope to see you and the Soup up in the PNW next year.

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Day nine, and another day with the Donovan 30 leading double-handed. Bill and Melinda have lead at every 20-hour position report except the second day. Thirsty is making a serious charge, though, and the race isn't over until the finish! Looks like they are finally getting 200+ mile days consistently.

Nice, but you do realize that Bill and Melinda could enter a Cal 20 and still be leading the double handed fleets (yes both fleets) boat for boat. B)

Clearly you know them. LOL - yep as long as the boat doesn't sink or the mast goes over the side those two are very very very hard to beat.

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Roleur - enjoyed very much chatting with you guys in VALIS' cockpit @ KYC. All in all, y'all did great & I hope our paths cross again soon!

 

Was disappointed there was no NS.

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Roleur - also fun to get to know you and Chris better and it was so great you guys won best first passage. We were quite pleased with our routing and the boat. It's been a fun year showing the J/105 has some offshore wheels in the right conditions. Great times altogether. It's been a tough week getting back into reality.

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Hi everyone!

 

Radio sked is (if I remember correctly) 6:00PM HST, 4A (4.146 MHz), moving to 6A or 8A if necessary. Green Buffalo is net control, at least to start.

 

I am back on the mainland now -- for the first time I am not on VALIS for the homeward trip. Rich (race crew) and three others are taking her home for me.

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The Shearwater Pacific Cup 2014 video is up...

 

 

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Very enjoyable video, thanks for sharing! Maybe in 2016 we'll be able to do it!

cheers, Greg

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Finally got around to putting together some of the footage from Blade Runner. This edit is low res and shorter as the better res/longer versions kept getting rejected by YouTube.

 

As I told Andy, now I know why there is an academy award for film editing! I clearly won't be in the running for that this year...

 

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Awesome video Ward. Hope to see you in 2016. We've got a little boat now too and we'll be there.

 

How much did you fly the a kite versus s kite?

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I'd say it was about 60% s kite, 40% a kite overall...we felt faster when running deep with the s kite, even though we could pole back the a kite. I wish we'd been better about logging data, as I'm not sure our perception was reality.

 

Maybe 2016 we can swap Blade Runner and Shearwater strait up? ;-)

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It was a lot of fun to fix it up, (and even sail it for a few years), but Galaxy Girl (Donovan 30 aka Wolfpack) is now in the extremely capable hands of the Erkelens permanently*. Maybe I'll actually get a chance to race on it again, now! Anyway, beware in two years time, my guess is they are going to come back stronger and faster. Anybody wanting to beat these two on that boat had better bring their "A" game.

 

 

* Or at least as permanently as a boat will be.

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Sorry for you, but glad that sleek grey beast will be staying local. I'm parked next to it where it was waiting and it's pretty cool to look at.

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I am counting on them being there in 2016 and fully expect them to be better. The reality is there are very, very few people IN THE WORLD, that if even if they bring their A game can beat the Erkelens on that boat. Personally, I would be perfectly happy to finish second to them. I've already learned a shit-ton from them just observing their prep, tactics, and comments after the race. We've gone so far as to buy a new boat and have completely upgraded our "training" program (sail more) to be more competitive next time. It won't be enough.

 

The only reason they didn't win 2014 overall by a landslide was because they were parked up along with the rest of the Tuesday starters for 24 hours (2 - 12 hour periods). They took their main down for hours to keep it from destroying itself it was so dead.

 

The morning of the Pacific Cup start - Notice all the spare lines on the starboard stern pulpit. That cracks me up. The little details.

 

2zpo85c.jpg

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We're putting a syndicate together for 2016. We won't be shorthanded, hell, a syndicate means a crowd, but really looking forward to it. I'll have to remember the lines trick, although it will make less difference on the type of boat we're considering.

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Damn. Boat looks really good. I was only bummed we didn't get the bottom paint to them. It got scrubbed off on the trailer ride. Otherwise it looks bomb. You can hardly imagine how much work we put into it, and then the work Bill put in. In retrospect, I would have done the bow pulpit completely differently. Oh well.

 

Pre-race prep....

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The funny part was Bill putting the MN reg numbers on the day before the race.

 

I thought the lack of bottom paint was just a "detail" to save weight.

 

It is one clean and sleek mf'er. Hard to believe it almost 30 years old!

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The bottom paint was mumble, mumble, mumble. Stuff we can use here on the Great Lakes for sure. Underneath is white epoxy. Both are very smooth. No performance difference, obviously, or that would have been dealt with, too. Just cosmetic.

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