Thursday, October 9, 2008

One Sofa, One TV

A couple of weeks ago I was banging around the yacht club and my homie Matt Gregory grabbed me and I could see he was excited. The conversation went like this:

"Hey Kimball. I just signed on to navigate Delta Lloyd in the Volvo Ocean Race."


"Do you, maybe, have room to store a sofa and a TV?


"Wait, there goes my phone."

(reaching for a pocket)

"Just a sec.

"It's my dad.

"He probably wants to take out more insurance on me . . . "

[Update. I'm leaving what I originally wrote below, claiming that Delta Lloyd navigator Matt Gregory's blog would be launching soon. But you should know that it's already launched and running updates at Volvo Hotseat.]

Thus it begins. Matt is planning a blog that will run on beginning very soon. Soon as in, as soon as we convince the robots at that it's not spam.
Beep. Beep.

In the meantime Matt spills a bit about his unpeace of mind right here in Counting the Hours to the Volvo.

There's one piece of very good news. It's been blowing dogs off chains along the Spanish coast today and raining to wash away the evidence. Better to get that out of the way before eight Volvo 70s leave Alicante on Saturday.

Before the rain hit, Matt (left, bottom row) lined up along with the boys for the lens of David Branigan/Oceansport.


Interesting to see that around the corner from the Med, at Portimão, Portugal, we have Portimão Global Ocean Race organizer Brian Hancock commenting thus on the six entries in his circumnavigating regatta that leaves on Sunday:

"We have an eclectic fleet for the inaugural event, small to be sure, but of the highest quality and with numbers on a par with the Velux and Volvo. We aspire to a fleet the size of the Vendée Globe but it has taken almost three decades for them to get to that level. There is deep interest in our race but with the economy in free fall and the fact that we are a brand new event, there is a certain and understandable reticence among some sailors, the French in particular, to throw their hand in with us. They will be there for race two, I am sure of it."

The PGOR is open to Class 40s and Open 40s, sailed either solo or doublehanded. It is intended as a cost-conscious entry point for the next generation of top dog circumnavigators.

Fast Moving and ROB You Were So Close

Over in Namibia at the Lüderitz Speed Challenge, kite sailor Rob Douglas has achieved 50.54 knots over the 500-meter course to up his record as the fastest American speedsailor and claim the number two spot worldwide behind Alex Caizergues at 50.57.

I believe that's a gap of three one-hundredths of a knot.

Douglas, who held the world record for fourteen days at 49.84 knots, now edges out Sebastien Cattelan for the number two spot, but we should not forget that Sebastien was the first to break 50.

One point worth making is that these kiters are using equipment that is pretty-much stock, perhaps with a bit of jiggering to the control lines. Douglas' kit retails for about $2,500: Amundsen boards with Curtis fins, Cabrinha kites, Dakine equipment.

Thursday was expected to be the last day of the big breeze at Lüderitz, so unless they spring a surprise on me this is it. l'Hydroptere got excited last week, over in the Med, and grabbed a headline by reporting a burst to 52 knots. s'Okay. They're not the first with a burst, and they're not the first at the headline game.

And I Didn't Even Know There Was Gonna Be A Meeting

This from BMW Oracle Racing:

October 8, 2008

GGYC spokesperson Tom Ehman said, "Unfortunately, the meeting between Larry Ellison and Ernesto Bertarelli in Trieste did not take place. We remain eager to resolve this issue and return the 33rd America's Cup to the water as a multi-challenger regatta under fair rules. We hope and expect the meeting will be rescheduled to take place in the near future."
- Ends -

No it doesn't—Kimball