Transpac: Celebrating the fast boats

Published on July 11th, 2023

Honolulu, Hawaii (July 11, 2023) – The biennial Transpac Race begins with three staggered starts to tighten the finish window for the 2225 nm course from Los Angeles to Honolulu, yet there remains the need for three staggered trophy presentations as the fast boats are, well, fast.

However, an irony of this year’s Transpac is that the teams that raced the fastest boats were expected to be in days ago and therefore celebrating their division victories first would make sense for efficient event planning.

Yet, two of these winning teams finished just in the last 24 hours, with one crossing the finish at Diamond Head only this morning at 5:30 am, less than 12 hours before the awards.

The lighter winds experienced by the starters in the final group on July 1, particularly in the first 24 hours getting off the coast of California, was the difference. While the two earlier starting divisions sped away to the west, nearly all the entries in the final group took almost as long to get to Hawaii as their slower-rated rivals.

This affected the overall fleet results, where the top places went to teams in the second start on June 29 and will be recognized at the next trophy ceremony at Hawaii Yacht Club on July 13.

Nonetheless, the winners of Divisions 1, 2, and 3 were celebrated today at Waikiki Yacht Club. Even though sometimes separated in elapsed time by wide margins, the competition in corrected time was at times very close.

This was particularly true in Division 2 where Ivan Batanov and Lawrence Andrews’ Reichel/Pugh 51 Zero Gravity defeated John Raymont’s Ker 52 Fast Exit II for the title win by a mere 20 minutes and 3 seconds in corrected time after over 9 days of sailing. In third was John Brynjolfsson’s TP52 SAGA.

Among the seven entries in Division 1, it was Doug Baker’s Dencho/Kernan 68 Peligroso that took the title by a margin of 3 hours 35 minutes over runner-up Tom Holtus’ Botin 56 Badpak.

In third place was Michael Firmin’s Infinity 52 Zeus from Australia, the brand new design from Hugh Welbourn with the bright yellow DSS foils protruding from the both sides of the hull.

And among the nine ULDB Sled entries in Division 3, Roy Disney’s team on his Andrews 68 Pyewacket won the title by a similar margin over runner-up David Clark’s Santa Cruz 70 Grand Illusion. In third in this division was Jack Jennings’ Santa Cruz 70 Pied Piper.

Pyewacket (above) had the best corrected time score among these three divisions at 20th in fleet overall.

Meanwhile there are still three teams out in the Pacific approaching the finish: Doug Pasnik’s Division 3 entry Trader, a Santa Cruz 70 about 330 miles out; Larry Goshorn’s Catalina 445 Imagine Too in Division 8 about 380 miles out; and the event’s only Double Handed entry, Russ Johnson’s Jeanneau 52 Blue Moon, a Hawaii-based entry in Division 6 that is about 570 miles out.

Event detailsResultsTracker

From the inaugural race in 1906, the biennial Transpac Race in 2023 is the 52nd edition with 57 entrants to take on the 2225 nm course from Los Angeles to Honolulu.

Staggered Starts
June 27 – Division 7, 8
June 29 – Division 4, 5, 6
July 1 – Division 1, 2, 3, 9

Source: TYC

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