“Geronimo” has been updated for Thomas Coville. Olivier de Kersauson set the bar high with “Geronimo” some years ago; setting records everywhere he sailed.
I had attempted to explain life a sea recently. This is a simple version of that life.
Today was the day that the trees opened their buds. soon the leaves will lose that delicate yellow/green color and will be fully green as in summer. This is the day I wait for each year. Most of my adult life I would be traveling and return after it had passed.
Spring comes and goes very quickly in New England. The most delicate season. Remarkably the Adams house and visitor’s center are not open yet. Some of my more colorful ancestors; opposed to slavery very early on, predicted the then far off Civil War over slavery. Kept an extensive journal which has permitted us to know what he was thinking. His library was nearly 14,000 books.
John Quincy Adams defended the slaves of the “Amistad”.
Offshore racing: All-consuming and enormously energizing
A lot has changed in offshore sailing since Larry Huntington first raced across the Atlantic in 1957. Advances in yacht design, construction and materials have made the boats exponentially faster and more durable. Modern communications enable boats to remain in touch with other competitors and the rest of the world throughout the nearly 3,000-mile journey. But the essence of the adventure remains much the same.
“Going across the Atlantic is a fantastic change of pace from everyday life,” says Huntington, who is a former commodore of the New York Yacht Club, which will co-host the race with the Royal Yacht Squadron, in association with the Royal Ocean Racing Club and the Storm Trysail Club.
“It’s a chance to think about what Joseph Conrad wrote about the mystery of the sea. ‘The true peace of God begins at any spot a thousand miles from the nearest land.’ All of that goes through your head as you do this kind of adventure. It’s a wonderful time for reflection. It’s also intensely competitive. I find it all-consuming and enormously energizing.”
So it’s no surprise, that more than a half century after his first trip across the Atlantic, Huntington’s 50-foot Snow Lion was one of the first boats to enter into the 2015 Transatlantic Race, which will start from Newport, R.I., in late June and early July of 2015 and finish at Lizard Point, on the southwestern corner of England.
With 15 months until the first gun is fired from Castle Hill in Newport, R.I., more than 20 boats have entered and nearly 70 others have expressed interest. The fleet for 2015 is expected to reach its limit of 50 boats, nearly double the 26 boats that competed in the race in 2011.
“We’re extremely pleased with the significant early interest in this race,” says Royal Yacht Squadron’s Rear Commodore Yachting David Aisher. “The history of the transatlantic race dates back to the birth of recreational ocean racing in the late 1800s. More than a century later, it remains one of the ultimate tests of yachting skill.”
This will be the third Transatlantic Race for Snow Lion, a 50-foot boat designed by Jason Ker and built in 2006. There is an adage that says distance racers should never sail on any boat that is shorter in feet than their age. Huntington, who will be 80 when the race starts, clearly doesn’t subscribe to that theory.
“I had seen some of Ker’s previous designs and admired how they behaved and looked,” says Huntington. “We kept losing races to other Ker designs, so I figured [building one for myself] was a good thing to do.”
In 2011, it took Huntington’s team more than 15 days to complete the course. While that race was notorious for light and challenging wind conditions, the transatlantic course is still one of the longest regular races open to amateur sailors.
“First and foremost, you need a really compatible, competent crew,” says Huntington of the keys to success. “If you have full confidence in your shipmates, everyone gets the proper amount of rest and then you can address whatever Mother Nature wants to throw at you.”
Race website: www.TransatlanticRace.org
– See more at: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/2014/04/01/offshore-racing-consuming-enormously-energizing/#sthash.NO8bexoc.dpuf
On Saturday I drove with a friend Paul Mello to watch Bill Johnson race his Porsche at Lime Rock Park. I know nothing about cars; never mind racing them. I was also my first experience photographing them. Getting to Lime Rock from Newport is an interesting drive. There is no way to get there directly, but it is a scenic drive.
SAN DIEGO (AP) — America’s Cup sailor Dirk de Ridder has been suspended from sanctioned events for five years by sailing’s international governing body, two people with knowledge of the decision said Tuesday.
The people spoke with The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the suspension is being appealed.
Unless a review board or the Court of Arbitration for Sport overturns the suspension, it effectively ends de Ridder’s sailing career. Not only is the 41-year-old de Ridder banned from the 2017 America’s Cup, but he’s unable to accept a $500,000 contract to sail in the Volvo Ocean Race, which begins later this year.
Word of the suspension came less than a week after two New Zealand attorneys criticized the international jury that punished members of America’s Cup champion Oracle Team USA, including de Ridder, after investigating the illegal modification of boats used in warmup regattas.
De Ridder said via email from his home in the Netherlands that he couldn’t comment on his case. He was banished from the 2013 America’s Cup and Oracle Team USA was docked two points by the international jury four days before the opening races of the regatta in September on San Francisco Bay. Oracle twice trailed Emirates Team New Zealand by seven points before staging one of the greatest comebacks in sports by winning the final eight races to retain the Auld Mug.
Jerome Pels, secretary general of the International Sailing Federation (ISAF), said via email that he couldn’t comment on either de Ridder’s case or on the report that was issued last week on behalf of Yachting New Zealand, in which two independent attorneys criticized the America’s Cup International Jury for “significant” procedural shortcomings and raised numerous concerns about evidence and the jury’s reasoning.
In that report, which was based on transcripts of the jury’s investigation last summer, the attorneys said two Kiwis on Oracle Team USA — grinder Matt Mitchell and shore crew member Andrew Walker — shouldn’t face further discipline by Yachting New Zealand. The international jury had barred Mitchell from the first four races of the America’s Cup match and expelled Walker.
Likewise, de Ridder had been cleared of further punishment by his national governing body before the ISAF Disciplinary Commission issued the five-year suspension.
Russell Coutts, CEO of Oracle Team USA, declined comment on de Ridder’s case.
However, Coutts said on his Facebook page last week that “The ISAF jury appeared to be on a crusade to ‘save the America’s Cup’ and I believe they may have allowed that belief to cloud their judgment.”
Paul Henderson, a former ISAF president and former International Olympic Committee member, told the AP by phone from his Toronto home on Tuesday that he’d never heard of such a harsh penalty, and that the case raises serious questions of whether de Ridder and others received due process.
“If you’re Ben Johnson and you won a gold medal and then got caught doping and were only banned for two years, and A-Rod is only out for a year, and then there’s somebody that it’s questionable whether he had anything to do with it, I don’t understand,” Henderson said.
Henderson said the New Zealand attorneys wrote “an excellent report. You read it and say, ‘Oooh. I’m not sure due process was done.”
Henderson said de Ridder’s case needs to be heard by the CAS.
On Aug. 27, after the America’s Cup International Jury had begun its hearing, the ISAF Disciplinary Commission approved rules of procedure that, among other things, allowed hearsay evidence.
Henderson said another problem is that the jury “has become a very incestuous group.” Some of the members of the America’s Cup International Jury are included in pools used to form review boards and disciplinary commissions. “It’s a lot of conflict,” Henderson said.
Pels said in an email that no one would sit on a panel if they were involved in an original decision.
Besides raising questions about the jury’s procedures, the two New Zealand attorneys wrote that they were “troubled” that the jury didn’t include an allegation of gross misconduct against Oracle’s Simeon Tienpont, who, according to the report, signed an interview record sheet stating that he helped Mitchell modify a 45-foot catamaran that was skippered by British sailing star Ben Ainslie, who was a key member of Oracle’s sailing team.
Tienpont sailed in the America’s Cup.
Coincidentally, Ainslie is Pels’ brother-in-law. In 2012, ISAF declined to further punish Ainslie after he grappled with a TV cameraman during the 2011 world championships and was disqualified from two races. That allowed Ainslie to sail in the Olympics, where he won his fourth straight gold medal and fifth games medal overall.