Chris Museler: Fly on the wall of HUGO BOSS

Published on May 27th, 2014

When the double-handed IMOCA Ocean Masters New York to Barcelona Race begins on June 1, five Open 60s will start from North Cove, the premier waterfront facility in New York City. With the World Financial Center of Manhattan looking on, the fleet will sail past the Statue of Liberty as they embark on the 3700 mile course across the North Atlantic.

On the other side, teams must pass through the Strait of Gibraltar and into the Mediterranean, where they will have to negotiate a tactical 525 miles along the Spanish coast before reaching the finish line just off the City of Barcelona.

Among the fleet will be American Chris Museler, who will be an embedded journalist onboard HUGO BOSS with co-skippers Ryan Breymaier (USA) and Pepe Ribes (ESP). Here Chris files his first report from onboard, as the skippers deliver HUGO BOSS from Newport, RI to NYC…

Shorthanded sailing, the massive challenge of sailing solo or with just one other across oceans, is one of the most compelling, dramatic athletic endeavors imaginable. Though satellite and broadband technology has allowed these adventurers to transmit the world this strenuous lifestyle, we are only seeing part of the story.

By its nature, these disciplines of sailing are solitary endeavors. The camera is only on when they are speaking to it. And with two, you only see one usually, not the team working seamlessly together.

I have always wanted to see deeper into the hidden rhythms of these sailors and surprisingly the Ocean Masters Series has taken a tremendous leap and dropped media crew members and reporters on the IMOCA 60s for the NY-Barcelona Race.

I am writing from the transom of Hugo Boss while American Ryan Breymaier and Spaniard Pepe Ribes feel each other and the boat out sailing from Newport to NYC.

I will be reporting for the New York Times all the way to Barcelona starting June 1. My challenge is being that fly on the wall to allow their natural rhythm and feel for the boat, the weather and each other show through.

But I am skeptical. Another human in their space has to have an impact. Their tongues will surely be bit a few times. Over the course of two weeks at sea, however, patterns will emerge for me to capture in words, images and video that have not been seen before from these super humans who can race non-stop around the world, alone, inside of three months.

This is a first in this discipline and we will see!

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