Doubling down for offshore adventure

................
VN:F [1.9.13_1145]
Rating: 0.0/10 (0 votes cast)

After a hard-earned third-place finish in IRC Class 3 in the 2015 Transatlantic Race, the Prospector team is back for the 2019 edition with a new boat, many of the same crew and an itch to better their performance from four years ago.

The team led by Paul McDowell, Dr. David Siwicki and Larry Landry, and Marty Roesch – and managed by Landry and McDowell – is one of five returning entries from the Transatlantic Race 2015 which extends from USA to England.

Landry, McDowell and Siwicki, along with three others, entered the 2015 race with a Farr 60 as a challenge to themselves. They’d been racing with and against each other for many years and were eager to add the transatlantic passage to their collective sailing passport.

The passage was as ocean passages go—some of the most white-knuckle, nerve-rattling moments the “hobbyists” had ever experienced opposite calm seas and beautiful sunsets unobstructed by land.

Successful racers with offshore experience, they had never charged hard in 30-knot winds and six-foot seas in a pitch-black night, and that’s what they encountered in the first 24 hours of the race when they blew out both the A5 and A6 asymmetric sails.

“That first night in the Gulf Stream, we blew up two kites partly because we weren’t smart enough to take our foot off the accelerator,” said Landry, the navigator. “There were some scary moments.

“We had a soft sail up in 35 knots of wind and couldn’t figure out how to take it down because we weren’t rigged for a letterbox takedown. A minute later the problem became academic because we broached and the sail blew to a million pieces.

“The boat will tell you when to back off. When it’s hard to drive and the driver is hunting to keep it on its feet, the boat is telling you to step it down.”

There were more nights like the first two throughout the 11-day passage, and in the midst of the mayhem McDowell frequently felt the weight of leading a crew of 16 in such challenging conditions.

“This is my hobby, and it was enormously stressful for me and the other owners,” said McDowell. “The whole trip was very windy. We blew up all our spinnakers early and that pressured us into a situation where we had to find as much wind as possible to keep the speed up.

“Occasionally it was more than we bargained for. When it’s super windy conditions with big breaking waves going downwind, if you have a jibe broach and a guy goes over the rail… you have to be careful. There’s a lot of pressure on me and the other owners.”

After completing the first Prospector program in mid-2016, the group planned to take some time off. Then a 68-foot grand-prix racer hit the market. Seeing an opportunity not to be missed, Landry, McDowell and Siwicki doubled down and decided to continue their offshore racing adventures.

Prospector “Mk. II” is a Mark Mills design that was originally built in 2008 at New England Boatworks. Since purchasing the boat in 2016, they’ve posted some very respectable results in high-profile events such as the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup, Pacific Cup, Puerto Vallarta Race and the Rolex Sydney Hobart Race. Given the right conditions, Landry believes they can chop three to four days off their 11-day passage in 2015.

“This is an amazing boat, but very, very different,” said Landry. “The new boat is an F1 race car compared to the Farr 60. She also was an amazing boat, but was an older design. The new boat is one of the last mini-maxis built strong enough to sail offshore. It’s going to be a wetter ride, but should be faster too.”

“The new boat is a completely different animal, both more and less frightening at the same time,” said McDowell. “The older boat went 12 knots no matter which direction it was pointed. With the new boat, we can plane at 18 to 20 knots. It’s tons of fun, but noisy and water is everywhere.”

In preparing for the upcoming Transatlantic Race 2019, crew safety is the first item addressed. Each crew member is allowed to bring a dry bag for personal clothing, which consists largely of base- and mid-layer underwear. The temperatures get cold in the North Atlantic. They’re equipped with top-of-the-line safety harnesses, each with an AIS beacon, foul weather gear and sea boots. They are “kitted-up” as the racing rules dictate, or watch captains demand.

“Each watch captain is allowed to call for full gear whenever he sees fit,” said McDowell.

Landry and McDowell both agreed that a significant lesson learned from the first Transatlantic Race was knowing when to back off the accelerator.

In the first 24 hours they’d blown out two of their most important off-wind sails, sails that would be needed later in the race given the routing predictions. The A5 was eventually repaired and put back into use, but the A6 was completely blown apart. They’d unnecessarily handicapped themselves at the start of a long passage.

To aid with deceleration, the Prospector team has fitted a third reef point, fitted with reef locks, on their mast and boom. During the Transatlantic Race 2015, they found that a third reef with J4 and/or genoa staysail was a fast setup. They’ve also practiced and refined the “letterbox” takedown method, where a soft sail is retrieved between the loose foot of the mainsail and the boom.

This allows the sail to collapse in the lee of the mainsail, affording more control as it is wrestled belowdecks through the main companionway. Finally, when the conditions are really hairy, they’ll limit the number of drivers to only the most experienced and their stints at the helm will be limited to 20 or 30 minutes to keep them as fresh as possible.

As they enter the final months of preparation for the race, which is scheduled to start June 25 off Newport, RI, Landry couldn’t be happier with the growth of the program.

“I generally characterize us as a collection of friends who are good amateur sailors. We’re vastly more experienced now by virtue of what we’ve done. It’s all about the magnitude of the challenge. From the seamanship involved to the challenge of optimizing the boat and the camaraderie that develops with the crew. It’s all a fantastic challenge.”

McDowell refers to offshore racing as “voyaging; it’s a great escape,” he said. “I like the aspect of long distance racing where you’re self-sufficient. If there’s a problem, no one comes and gets you; you can’t call it quits and sail into a nearby harbor. You have to get the boat there yourself. I like that aspect.”

That’s an aspect that has drawn many of the 24 entries to the Transatlantic Race 2019.

Event details – Entry list – Facebook

Background: The Transatlantic Race 2019 starts June 25 for the 2,960-nautical-mile course from Newport, R.I., to Cowes, England. The race is organized by the Royal Yacht Squadron, the New York Yacht Club, the Royal Ocean Racing Club and the Storm Trysail Club. Pre-start activities will take place at the New York Yacht Club’s Harbour Court clubhouse in Newport, while awards will be presented at the Royal Yacht Squadron’s Cowes Castle clubhouse on the Isle of Wight.

The race is a direct descendant of the first great transatlantic ocean race, which started from New York Harbor on December 11, 1866. The 2019 edition will be the 31st transatlantic race organized by the New York Yacht Club with the fleet to start off Castle Hill Lighthouse.

Source: Stuart Streuli / sailingscuttlebutt

VN:F [1.9.13_1145]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

Diğer Konular


600true numbers topleft 300true 800http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/wp-content/plugins/thethe-image-slider/style/skins/white-square-1
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=122049
     Slide3
    YELKEN POSTASI – Tanju Okan Kupası
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=121354
     Slide3
    Ali Nasman ile YELKEN – Haberler
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=123020
     Slide4
    TANGO TANGO – Kabotaj Bayramı Ozel
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=123237
     Slide5
    UCASE YELKEN – Haberler
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 ENGELSIZ YELKEN – Haberler
     Slide6
    ENGELSIZ YELKEN – Haberler
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=121401
     Slide6
    Ekrem İnözü Röportajı
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=122071
     Slide7
    Özkan Gülkaynak Röportajı
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=121794
     Slide8
    Antalya Yelken Kulübü Röportajları
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=98487
     Slide9
    ACIK DENIZ Programının Konuğu “Tolga Pamir”
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0
    Slide10
    Selcen Tanınmış'ın Konukları “Rüştü Onur Atilla & Doğan Akdoğan”
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=121183
     Slide11
    PRUVA Programı – Konuk “Cahit Uren”
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=119973
     Slide12
    SG YELKEN – Stüdyo Konuk “Kpt.Neşe Hasipek”
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=123304
     Slide13
    Sunum ATLANTİK GEÇİŞİ >> Ekrem İnözü
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=114887
     Slide14
    YELKEN POSTASI – Konuk”Can Akaltan”
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=115544
     Slide15
    YELKEN POSTASI – Konuk “Ogeday Sunay”
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=116854
     Slide16
    YELKEN POSTASI - Konuk “Haktan Taş”
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=99800
     Slide17
    ACIK DENIZ Programının Konuğu “Yüksek Ökçeler Yelken Grubu”
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=115288
     Slide18
    Ali Nasman ile YELKEN – Konuk “Erdem Ağan”
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=114819
     Slide19
    Ali Nasman ile YELKEN – Konuk “Erman Aras”
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=114978
     Slide20
    Dünya Dragon Şampiyonu “Ali Tezdiker” Ali Nasman’nın Konuğu !
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=116529
     RızaEkipmen
    Ali Nasman ile YELKEN – Konuk Rıza Epikmen
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=119810
     Slide22
    Yalıkavak Marina GM "Deniz Akaltan" Bloomberght'ye Konuk Oluyor
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=94874
     HaldunGursoy
    Erkan Gürsoy Röportajı >> Selim Pala
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0
    BanuOney
    ACIK DENIZ Programının Konuğu “Banu Öney”
  • 5000 fade true 30 bottom 0 http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/?p=91264
     Slide25
    Bedros Kılıçcan Röportajı >> Selim Pala
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25

http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Untitled3.jpg

http://www.sualtigazetesi.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/SGEO001.jpg


Bu konu şimdiye kadar 320 kere görüntülenmiştir