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Transpac Race: The Untold Stories

Published on July 20th, 2015

Here are a few memorable moments that have occurred across the fleet during the first week of the 48th Transpac Race from Los Angeles to Honolulu…

OEX, Santa Cruz 70:
The breeze angle at the start was making it difficult to lay the start line on starboard. We wound up in a bit of a pickle with an over-ride on our jib sheet heading on port tack at Grand Illusion and Wild Oats at full speed. Jib “Get a Knife” Kelly cut the sheet just in time for a lee bow tack under GI. We tacked backed to port at the pin with Wild Oats acting as a good blocker to leeward. However, just five miles into the race, crew Jim MacLeod suffered what we now know to be a herniated disk while stacking sails on the weather rail. After consulting the race committee, we elected to get him off the boat and get him to medical attention.

Creative, J/105:
We noticed there wasn’t much tension on the backstay, and after some investigation discovered that the forestay had detached from the mast. It was being held up by the halyard only (jib was furled). After a few hours of bravery and ingenuity, we dropped the forestay and jib onto the deck, rigged up a temporary forestay, and are continuing on our way to Hawaii, although at a more cautious pace. Everyone is bummed, but we are all safe and still able to sail the boat, so onward we go!

Resolute, J/125:
We tried to readjust our bobstay in the very front of the boat. It’s a high strength line that connects to the outboard end of our sprit pole through a hole in the bow at the water line. Well it appears we broke the caulking seal around the line that goes through the bow, and as a result we are taking on a fair amount of water. We slipped a tennis ball we had on board (on the anchor ends) over that line and pushed it against the hull to act as a damn. We then layered 5200 caulk over the secure end of that line inside the boat. That has minimized things for now but we’ll have to keep applying that over time and hope it dries wet as 3M advertises.

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Transpac schedule:
Monday, July 13: First Transpac Start: Divisions 7 & 8; 22 entrants
Thursday, July 16: Second Transpac Start: Divisions 4, 5 & 6; 18 entrants
Friday, July 18: Third Transpac Start: Multihulls, Divisions 1, 2 & 3; 19 entrants
Friday, July 31: Honolulu Awards Ceremony – The Modern Hotel
Saturday, Aug 1st: Kaneohe YC Party and Plywood Cup Regatta

First organized by the Transpacific Yacht Club in 1906, the Transpacific Yacht Race or Transpac is an offshore sailing race from Point Fermin in Los Angeles to Diamond Head, just east of Honolulu, a distance of 2225 miles. This is among the world’s great ocean races, and biennially attracts some of the world’s fastest sailing yachts, some of its most talented offshore racing sailors, and a wide variety of offshore sailing adventurers.

Transpacific YC also conducts occasional races to Papeete, Tahiti. Membership is open to all sailors who have completed a TPYC race to either of these destinations in paradise.

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