View Full Version : Long Pac Progress

06-20-2013, 07:01 AM
Last evening Daniel Willey wrote that the seas are "lumpy" out there. Anyone looking at the weather forecast can see that it is dark orange, red red red and then it is not. Getting through that red must have been harsh, because the following boats have retired: X Dream got out the gate only to lose her autopilot; Stephen Buckingham on Starbuck hung in there a long time, but is safe in harbor now, and Tiger Beetle is returning, too; Crazy Rythm lost her autopilot, too, and John Simpston got smacked around when the boat "fell off the back of a wave" or something like that. Max Crittenden's Solar Wind lost her rudder in last week's Farallones race, and Nathalie Criou's Elise didn't start, either.Tortuga retired and Randy Leasure hasn't given a reason yet. Mirage and Even Keel did not check in last evening at 8pm. We are waiting to hear from them this morning between 8-8:30 am..

tiger beetle
06-20-2013, 07:48 AM
hi jackie, tiger beetle here

conditions were pretty good when the wind stayed below 25 knots, the swell was down around 3 or maybe 5 feet with 4-5 foot wind chop on top of that. the unpleasant part was when wind would climb back up to 28-32 knots and the boat started to get knocked around. we were reaching with 3reefs in the main and about 1/2 half the 120 genoa rolled up (the sail was made to handle those conditions) boat speeds 7.8-8.5 knots.

we were trundling along off the continental shelf headed on course 240 true, humpback whales were feeding and breaching, albatross were winging around, sun was out and visibility was really good - quite beautiful out on the water.

the forecast called for building conditions into the evening and we were already loaded up. forecast then had much more pleasant conditions out past 125 west, which would be nice... and then on friday it would be stronger winds where we were to get back into the gate - so we had a discussion in the cockpit (amid big chunks of water careening down the sidedeck and into the cockpit!) and decided this was going to be hard on the boat and hard on us - sso we waited for a flat spot to turn around and sailed in back towards the farallones. saw tufted puffins on the wing, more whales, lots of feeding birds.

hi spots: ais transponder worked great (vessel traffic called us and asked us to make passing arrangements with a smaller inbound tanker, very nice of vts!), autopilot steered super, mainsail reefing works very well with the new smaller antal 2:1 halyard block, using the ipad at night to relay the belowdeck laptop's nav data up to the cockpit, and target beanbag chairs on tethers are nice to perch on!

low spots: a leaky foredeck hatch seal let in enough water to wash out my clothes in their bags, my micro-bilge pump gave up the ghost, and i want to get better sea boots.

overall conditions were certainly not boat-breaking, but not a lot of fun. it's rather nice to sit here at CYC's guest dock and not have spray flying over the boat!


06-20-2013, 09:52 AM
Starbuck here. Compared to the Farallones race this year conditions were not as bad. At least out to south of the Farallones. Which is where I turned around. At that point the seas were flattening out somewhat and the boat was sailing well with double reefed main and #4. But the autopilot was malfunctioning. It was like it was getting a bad compass input as it would continue to make small inputs to the helm as the boat slowly went off course. Frustrating as it's a new X-5 and had been working great. Then the laptop was just dead. Also frustrating as it had been working great running macENC with AIS and xgate emailing and pulling in gribs through the sat phone. That was my check in plan and I hadn't figured out how to text from the phone by itself.

But another really good shakedown. New simplified reefing system worked great. Express 27 #3 makes a good #4 on Starbuck. Lots of things to work on. Leaks, leaks and more leaks. Even my boots leak.

Good luck to all still out there.


06-20-2013, 12:23 PM
Hi Jackie. RC here. Matt has posted this morning's positions onto the map. One vessel is unidentufied, I believe that to be Mirage since all the yachts are named. I don't recall Mirage testing here position reports prior to the start. Autopilots were just not the crew expected, Tortuga replied to my email with, "Fun =0."

Matt has some logs to post. VTS called frequently at first but by this morning everyone seemed up to speed on the reports.


06-20-2013, 01:09 PM
Hi Lucie,
where will logs be posted?


06-20-2013, 02:14 PM
Logs are now posted. I didnt' get a lot from the racers but what I did get in email is posted now here: http://sfbaysss.org/longpac_2013_log.html

Still haven't heard from Mirage.

06-20-2013, 04:37 PM
Great job Matt.

Those guys to the south need to put their boats up on the wind. Probably hard for Galaxsea and Rainbow but the others can do it. The GRIB's show they'll get headed farther out = don't make 400 miles into 480 miles - VMG baby!

06-20-2013, 05:19 PM
Funny, at 0800 Galaxsea reported hoping to round in 2 hours from now or so!

Yes, I do want to chat!


06-20-2013, 10:57 PM
Did any one make their spot tracker info public? It would be fun to see more detailed tracking.

06-21-2013, 07:59 AM
Mirage sent an email last night 2AM

I was again unable to control seasickness and one of its effects was that I couldn't operate my SatPhone. Every time I looked at the buttons I started to throw up. Back to the drawing board. Mirage and I are fine and back on dry land. Thanks for putting on the race, despite not finishing, it was fun. Terry Cobb Mirage

06-21-2013, 02:10 PM
FYI - we heard Condor call in on VHF from under the GG bridge around 12:45pm so they have likely finished around 1pm - still awaiting proper word here it looks like, but in case others are curious and not able to listen to VHF, figured I'd mention it to hold us until something official posts! Way to go Condor!

06-21-2013, 06:58 PM
Condor was behind my guess of 10 AM but way ahead of Ben's 1900 guess.

Humdinger finished round 1700,

Should be posted soon!

06-21-2013, 08:19 PM
The finishing times are in the regular scoring program, Jibeset.

Racers are to call in on VHF 72 no later than crossing under the Golden Gate, as soon as Pt Bonita. Gives us just enough time to gather stuff and run up to the deck.

Expected next are Lightspeed and Xpression, both rate 81 and turned back only 2 hours apart.

Mr Wonderful thanks just after the dancing ends at Sam's but guessing will be better after the 2000 position reports.

Whenever you see Matt,I recommend a hearty thanks, because I love seeing posts quickly!


06-22-2013, 08:36 AM
This from Daniel Willey: Sat 06/22/13 08:11 AM

gala 3734 12304

speed 7 knots heading 065 true distance to the gate 32 miles; winds on the beam at 16 knots;
the boat is still reefed down from last night and comfortable, seas are still rough

last night was hell, 37 knots of wind and big squared up seas.

the sea gods kicked my ass all last night.

06-22-2013, 10:01 AM
Just to see the possibilities I tried VHF to the race boats. The little home made antenna, a VHF Marine radio, and 3000' of altitude let me chat with several racers out to 180 miles.

Good to see everyone getting home ahead of the LP system.

06-22-2013, 06:02 PM
Great job Matt.

Those guys to the south need to put their boats up on the wind. Probably hard for Galaxsea and Rainbow but the others can do it. The GRIB's show they'll get headed farther out = don't make 400 miles into 480 miles - VMG baby!

Hi Rob,

Didn't get your message in time :)
I went too far south. Although speed going out was good. I paid for it on the way home and to your point I sailed an extra 90 miles.

Dirk - Xpression

06-22-2013, 07:22 PM
Great job Matt.

Those guys to the south need to put their boats up on the wind. don't make 400 miles into 480 miles - VMG baby!

How many Long Pacs did it take for you to figure this out, Bob? How many extra hours did you sail in your first? The idea, as I get it, is that if you sail as close to the rhumb line as possible you sail fewer extra miles. On the tracks I saw very few tacks. So this came back to haunt them, is that it?

06-22-2013, 08:32 PM
I've done the race once (2011) and we had a northerly so it was easier to stay up close to the rhumb line on the way out.

It's easy for me to be an armchair quarterback - plus when it's really rough it's wise to crack off a bit and not pound into it - but it appears that just off the continental shelf (about 40-50 miles out) the fleet got a big lift. Those who took the lift and headed west sailed a lot fewer miles than those who eased sheets and kept sailing WSW.

Tacking (north) rarely provides an advantage in a LongPac - it's more the discipline to sail the boat upwind on the way out vs. fading off to a reach, which is more comfortable and faster but means sailing more miles.

06-22-2013, 09:43 PM
Carroll E and Maris are the remaining racers this evening. Still need a report from Carroll E for tonight. Archimedes just finished. Pogo finished a little earlier.

I'm a little beat up from the YRA Summer Sailstice race today. The full main and 100% head sail was a bit too much up to HR and back downwind 2x ugg. Hope you all had a great time sailing.


06-23-2013, 02:38 PM
Don't forget, there isn't really a rhumb line in this race. If you really wanted the shortest distance to 126-40, you'd have to sail slightly north because the lines of longitude are closer together the farther north you get. But that wouldn't make sense with anything like normal wind because you'd be hard on the wind going out and too deep coming back. It's always a compromise between distance and speed. (Like I'm a expert, with 3 DNFs and a DNS in the race, plus an aborted attempt on my own.)

06-23-2013, 10:58 PM
All done, nothing left but the party! Well, a little more...

Carroll E called at 2330 Saturday, in the middle of Foyle's War. We ran to our post, only to hear that once under the bridge the wind shut down. It was a pleasure to sit waiting for him on a balmy full moon evening.

Maris showed up this morning a little way off from Pt Reyes, whale watching.

06-24-2013, 11:13 AM
That was a finish for the memory banks; ghosting along under the full moon with a zephyr through a peaceful Racoon Straight and Ben flashing the spotlight signaling my crossing of the line. Thanks Ben and Lucie!

07-08-2013, 07:27 PM
hi jackie, tiger beetle here

we were reaching with 3reefs in the main and about 1/2 half the 120 genoa rolled up (the sail was made to handle those conditions) boat speeds 7.8-8.5 knots.

w rob/beetle
Hi, Rob, When you say that your 120 genoa was made to handle those conditions, what do you mean? Was your genoa made with those polyproplene ropes inside at the luff? Any information would be appreciated. I am ready to order a furling jib and would like it to meet as many needs as possible. If I got a 120 genoa and could roll it half way up without wrecking it that would make me happy. Thanks, Jackie