Around Alone preparations 2002
PV – Panama – Charleston – Azores
“Hi Mates!! You know I got on board in SF to head to San Diego with a sack of oranges from my back yard, and obviously all the other boats have apples. Welcome to Open 60 racing. On the one hand, it’s frustrating to be grinding against these boats that have been optimized for moderate conditions, on the other, it’s great for us because we’ve been able to really focus in detail on trimming in running conditions to optimize Ocean Planet.
For instance, in light air running, when you’d think that you should throw all weight overboard, we are faster tanked up with water ballast and sheeted in hard. The trick is to go as fast and high as possible on the apparent wind. Takes some getting used to for our crew (I can’t drive all the time…). With more wind you can ease the sheets and even dump ballast as you square up. Last night was beautiful, with a full moon and warm, moderate air. At one point we flew by a boat from the fleets that had started in the days before us like they were standing still. What fun, they must have wondered: “Who in the heck is that!?”” – Puerto Vallarta Race Feb. 26, 2002
“I am just a little over 24 hours and 250 miles into my trip to the Azores. I was going to really take it easy for a couple of days, but something changed my plan . . . . .another sailboat! Ok, it was just a cruiser, but I couldn’t resist putting up the small genniker and blasting by them. Another reason is that I need to get NE soon enough to latch onto the bottom of a low pressure system tomorrow that should give me a big push across the pond.” – June 26, 2002