WELCOME TEAM OCEAN HEARTS!

Posted on July 21, 2016 in Fight the Kraken, Great Pacific Race 2016, Moana Uli, Ocean Hearts, Row Aloha, Sons of the Pacific

Wednesday, July 21st, 2016 – Race Day 46

WEATHER: Four to five metre seas and winds in the high 20’s will see our easterly 3 teams in surfing conditions for the next 24-48 hours as Darby barrels past at a lower latitude. For Moana Uli, the strong conditions on the leading edge of the storm should positively propel them to the finish line. 

STORM WATCH: Darby is currently located over 550 miles to the east of Hilo, Hawaii and remains a strong tropical storm expected to maintain its strength over the next few days. Thankfully the forecast track continues to shift west away from teams Row Aloha, Sons of the Pacific and Fight the Kraken.

On Saturday, Darby will get close to the Big Island of Hawaii and with luck will dissipate against the mountains of the Big Island as storms historically have done. Sunday into Monday, Molokai, Maui and Oahu will likely endure some effects from Darby, with heavy downpours for starters. 

Tropical Storm Frank is the latest tropical storm in the Eastern Pacific, which formed late this afternoon over 600 miles SE of the southern tip of Baja California. Frank is set to run parallel to the Mexican coast over the next few days. A second storm has also formed, Tropical Depression 8-E, currently 800 miles SSW of the southern tip of Baja California. Strengthening of both storms is forecast through the weekend.

Shortly after sunrise this morning, the Great Pacific Race Committee boat took off from the Waikiki Yacht Club.  About three nautical miles past Diamond Head, we spotted Pat Hines and Liz Dycus on Roosevelt.  It had been misting rain over the course of the morning and when we turned around to escort these incredible women to the finish line between the red buy and the Diamond Head Lighthouse, a rainbow appeared that literally pointed them directly to the finish line.

This last week had been a very difficult one for our crew on Team Ocean Hearts.  They were fatigued, sleep deprived and exhausted.  Even last night they received no rest.  They decided to go on sea anchor for a spell, until Pat called and said “So we’ve deployed the sea anchor and we’re thinking of resting for 3 hours.  Is it normal to go 1.6 while on the sea anchor?”  Not really, so there was no rest for our weary crew.

All of their exhaustion faded away when they saw Margot and Renee on the Great Pacific Race committee boat!  This gave Pat and Liz the inspiration to power on and with both ladies at the oars, they rowed across the finish line after 46 days, 17 hours and 47 minutes at sea.

Back at the Waikiki Yacht Club, Liz and Pat were met by even more family, friends, co-workers, other Great Pacific Race rowers, media and yacht club members.  They each received so many leis that at times we could barely see their smiling faces.  With a spray of champagne, and a helpful arm from family and friends to steady their sea legs, they went straight for dessert before their first meal ashore!   Yes – the first order of the day was ice cream!  Coffee flavor and Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia.

During their welcome party Liz and Pat warmed our hearts with stories of their crossing, received calls from family that couldn’t make the trip for their arrival, and were reminded of why they made this epic row.  Their charity is the American Heart Association and they dedicated this row to the memory of Pat’s Mother and a dear friend of Liz’s.

Pat Hines, at the age of 62, is now the oldest women to ever row an ocean.  Together, the two of them are the fastest female open class pair to ever cross the Pacific.  Clearly age does not matter – determination, dedication, strength and role models like these two incredible women do!

Our medical consultant Dr. Aenor Sawyer, UCSF Orthopedist and Medical Officer for the Great Pacific Race met with Liz and Pat, as part of the protocol of each arrival, and shared this statement:

“This Pacific crossing by Ocean Hearts is truly precedent setting. Their preparation, courage, discipline and teamwork allowed them to arrive in record time and more importantly in good health! This row by Pat and Liz is an inspiration to all those over 60, especially women, demonstrating that ‘personal and world bests’ can occur across the lifespan, even in later decades. Their physical and mental resilience set new standards and will shape a new definition of health aging.”

Next up we will have Team Moana Uli Rowing’s arrival, mostly likely within the next 24 hours.  Tim, Greg and Brian have been rowing hard to beat Hurricane Darby literally to the finish line.  All signs point to them making it to land by sundown tomorrow.  Keep cheering them on!  They have almost made it!!!  Updates regarding their arrival will be posted here and on our Facebook page.

Our eastern boats were given the green light before sunset last night and have all gone back on the oars.  Each of these teams is now under the 500 NM mark.  Row Aloha reported “all good aboard row aloha. enjoying the ride after chomping at the bit through the safety pause.”

As we mentioned yesterday, our support boat Galen Diana met up with Sons of the Pacific.  Here is part of their report:

“Today we caught up with Louis and Erden while they were at sea anchor about six hours after leaving Row Aloha. Our first contact was a voice over the VHF radio hailing us – ‘Galen Diana, Galen Diana… do you read?’  It was Louis across the air waves with a very excited voice. He was guiding us to him. We had their earlier position at anchor at 23N / 150W but they had drifted 1.5 miles west and were not showing on AIS.  They could see our sails which was when Louis went nuts and began to direct us to his position over the radio all the while telling us how happy he was to see us again.

When we pulled up we were greeted by Louis blowing us a big exaggerated kiss and waving his arms over his head.

Louis went on to say how much this experience has changed his view on life and how he has taken some of the simplest pleasures and values in life for granted. For example using his legs and taking a walk. He says he is looking forward to walking which had been a boring way to get places for him in the past. ‘This has changed me in so many ways, I will never look at anything the same way ever. A truly life changing experience’.

“I am also looking forward to the feel of texture in my food again, something to sink my teeth in to.”

After watching two crew arrivals and their devouring of their first meal, we are sure that Louis, and the rest of our crews, will revel in that moment of sinking their teeth into something warm – and with texture!

Stay Tuned!

PREDICTED ARRIVAL 07-21-16 @ 20:00 PST
CREW VMG RECENT VMG START
UN Finished Finished
OH Finished Finished
MU 22-Jul 23-Jul
SOTP 27-Jul 01-Aug
ALOHA 27-Jul 01-Aug
FTK 02-Aug 04-Aug

 

GREAT PACIFIC RACE STANDINGS as of 4:00 pm PDT
1 Uniting Nations: FINISHED – 39 Days 9 Hours 56 Minutes
2 Team Ocean Hearts: FINISHED –46 Days 17 Hours 47 Minutes
3 Moana Uli: ROWING – 73 NM to finish, Rowed 2249 NM
4 Sons of the Pacific: ROWING – 394 NM to finish, Rowed 2015 NM
5 Row Aloha: ROWING – 400 NM to finish, Rowed 2028 NM
6 Fight the Kraken: ROWING – 464 NM to finish, Rowed 1952 NM
Endurance Limits: RETIRED – Rowed 241 NM
Endurance Limits USA: RETIRED – Rowed 207 NM