Day 5 Race Report

Posted on June 14, 2014 in Battleborn, CC4 Pacific, Crews, Elsa Hammond, Fat Chance, General, Great Pacific Race 2014, NOMAN, Pacific Warriors, Team Pacific Rowers

WEATHER: The wind continues to blow from the NW at 20-30 knots

Teams Survived Friday the 13th and a Full Moon
Crews were lucky on Friday the 13th to have the light of a full moon to guide them through the night. All teams currently rowing are making great progress. Pacific Warriors sent in this note about last night’s conditions: “Big moon. high seas. . on para anchor.”

Over the last 24 hours, it appears that boats are heading on a southerly course, which may not make sense since Hawaii is to the west of California, and not to the south. These are small craft, measuring between 19 and 29 feet, powered only by human strength and are highly susceptible to the wind and currents. The race to Hawaii starts as a race to the trades. Thomas Hoover, on the Board of Directors at the Monterey Peninsula Yacht Club and “Uncle” host to Team NOMAN, let us in on a little sailing secret he shared with his “nephews” before they embarked on their journey. “To get to the trades, ride the wave and surf to the right. Ride the wave, surf to the right.” These words of wisdom appear to be paying off as team NOMAN, the last team to leave the dock in the first wave of racers, have managed to row, or surf, themselves into third place. Team NOMAN called in this morning and said they were finding the conditions challenging. They were struggling to make progress west and had briefly deployed their para-anchor.

Team Battleborn reported in that they may look like they’re going off course “but there will be a strategy… avoiding the rough stuff and catching the handy trade winds.”

Our French pair on CC4 Pacific also deployed their drogue and told us that they had avoided capsizing twice over the last 24 hours. They are reportedly surfing the waves “beside fifty dolphins or so which brought a lot of emotions in a short amount of time.”

Solo rower Elsa Hammond / Elsa Hammond’s Pacific Solo Row had been struggling in large waves as she headed south along the California Coast past Big Sur. She has since chosen direction over speed, and is currently headed on a more westerly track.

Weather signs are pointing toward a Tuesday, June 17 start for the second wave of the Great Pacific Race. The excitement around the boat “cage” (the fenced-in staging area for boats) is on the rise. Fat Chance Row headed out for an overnight row where before dark they were seeing 20 kts of breeze. Pacific Rowers underwent their roll test this morning and all was dry inside the cabins, which gave the team a sigh of relief after all the recent work over at Monterey Bay Boatworks. They are working hard to get all their little jobs done today so they can catch today’s 2014 FIFA World Cup match between England v Italy at our local haunt, the London Bridge Pub.

Early this morning, the Great Pacific Race Support Boat 2 “Cloud Nine” set off under slightly foggy conditions. There are two support boat teams for our rowers to help ensure their safety as sea. Cloud Nine will be out for 10-14 days to support the crews. Monterey Peninsula Yacht Club members Kit Ruck and Randy Frey are two of the five person crew on board the historic yacht Cloud Nine.
Solo Racers:
Project Flight Plan: Waiting for next start/ weather window
Rowing 4 Reefs: Returned to Safe Harbor; Waiting for next start/ weather window
Elsa Hammond: ROWING – Position 6; 2073 NM to finish, Rowed 87 NM
Row for Hope: Returned to Safe Harbor; Waiting for next start/ weather window
Pair Racers:
Clearly Contacts CA: Returned to Safe Harbor; Waiting for next start/ weather window
CC4 Pacific: ROWING – Position 5; 2029 NM to finish, Rowed 165 NM
Fat Chance: Undergoing Scrutineering
Four Person Teams:
Battleborn: ROWING – Position 2; 1964 NM to finish, Rowed 215 NM
Boatylicious: Undergoing Scrutineering
Pacific Rowers: Undergoing Scrutineering
NOMAN: ROWING – Position 3; 2024 NM to finish, Rowed 100 NM
Pacific Warriors: ROWING – Position 4; 2029 NM to finish, Rowed 105 NM
Uniting Nations: ROWING – Position 1; 1935 NM to finish, Rowed 195 NM