Good morning we're back for the second day of the 50th annual Southern Straits Race. Tune in for more updates from the course with the Fugitive Crew and others.
Spring is in the air here on the west coast, the Easter bunny is busy hiding eggs and the Fugitive's crew are ready to race in the 50th annual Southern Straits race. Did you enjoy our live updates from the course last year? If so GREAT NEWS! WE'RE BACK and BIGGER than ever! This year you'll have updates from the course, our trusty landlubber commentator is back with a few new guests, and we will have updates from a few other boats on the course.
Please click HERE to watch the live streaming (starting at 9:00am PST March 30, 2018) and updates from the race course. You do not have to join Facebook to watch the feed and see the updates, however if you are a member please be sure to like and follow our page!
If you want to see how the Fugitive is doing on the course, along with the other competitors, click here to be taken to the tracker website.
Good luck to all the racers!
As many of you who follow us on Facebook have probably noticed, there have been some conspicuous changes to the page recently; The grey Yanmar 2 cylinder engine we’ve been posting about for years, has turned in to a bigger 3 cylinder Volvo; the shots aboard the boat with the beautiful teak background have been replaced with the images of a much lighter oak interior, and of course there may appear to be more space. You may have even noticed a change in the name of the pages we operate.
As is the case on any adventure, there is always the inevitable reality that, at some point it has to come to an end, and for me and the rest of my team this marks the end of our adventures aboard Thursday’s Child.
This was not an easy decision to make, and in all honesty, I’ve been trying to write this post for a few months now. For me and the crew, there is so much excitement about a new boat, there is so much adventure we can have in a bigger, ocean racer, but there is also a great deal left to be desired when compared to Thursday’s Child.
For me Thursday’s Child has been more than just a boat, to me she is humanized. She has been a partner in crime; the vessel (quite literally) on which I’ve forged lasting relationships and made the best of friends. Together we’ve taken on the biggest of challenges. From our first Southern Straits race in 2013, to the Van Isle 360 in 2015 and until now, the cast of characters aboard the boat has been such a fantastic group of people. I think back on what I share with my friends; I think about showing my family the BC coast, about proposing to Mida aboard, and that my son Jack took his very first steps aboard the boat, I think about the feeling after winning our first southern straits race, or doing my first single handed race to nanaimo, which was scary as hell. I also think of Carol Macmillan, who sailed so fiercely with us as she was fighting a loosing battle with cancer; she literally sailed until she could sail no more. I think of my sailing friends, who have since passed Rick, Pieter, and Butch, who's support and encouragement was integral to our success. I Think of how these friends would have considered Thursday’s Child synonymous with me and my team.
I am so lucky to have had such amazing friends and adventures aboard this boat. At times I was seriously considering keeping her as a second boat, but deep down I knew that would be unfair to her. She needs to be taken care of and used, and I wouldn’t be able to do that with her as a second boat.
There is good news I promise! It’s not all doom and gloom! The fantastic consolation in all this is that Nick who has been a regular aboard TC, along with his partner Sean have decided to take over as stewards of this fantastic boat. They took over her a few months ago, and so far they’ve been doing an amazing job fixing every little thing that I had become blind to, and I’m sure their adventures will take them far afield. Thursday’s Child Does have far to go after all.
For me and the motley crew you’ve been hearing about for the last few years– we have some pretty fantastic adventures coming up, and a whole lot of boat to play with but we’ll save that for another time. Keep an eye out here to hear all about our new boat. The one we call ‘The Fugitive’.
Spring has sprung, the Easter bunny is busy hiding eggs and the Thursday's Child crew are ready to race in the 49th annual Southern Straits race. Ever wondered what the heck goes on during a race? If so GREAT NEWS! This year we're inviting you all to join us through the magic of the internet! We'll be testing our live 360 streaming camera from the boat and our on shore producer genius will be broadcasting from land with some expert commentators!
Please click HERE to watch the live streaming (starting at 10:25am PST April 14, 2017) and updates from the race course. You do not have to join Facebook to watch the feed and see the updates, however if you are a member please be sure to like and follow our page!
If you want to see how TC is doing on the course, along with the other competitors, click here to be taken to the tracker website.
Good luck to all the racers!
It feels great to be on top!
The racing this week was an absolute blast. Once again we set off expecting to be drenched in rain and drifting around in no wind. We were all very pleasantly surprised when the rain held off, and the wind showed up! Shelly and Zac experienced their first broach, and we managed another 1st overall.
With only one race day left we're starting with a great chance to be 1st overall for this series, but of course anything can change!
#1 in the Winter Series
TC had a fantastic start to the 2016 season with a double handed entry into the TCYC New Years day Race.
The day was almost a no-go after discovering that Starbucks wasn't open on New Years Day, fortunately the boys are good at thinking on their feet and a trip to Tim Hortons saved the day. On the drive to the boat Benj's car was reading -5 outside, and when they arrived at the club the docks were completely frozen. In addition to the inhospitable temperature it was also blindly foggy. Not wanting to kill themselves, but still wanting to race they made a call to Vancouver traffic, the local harbour authority to determine that there were not big scary boats planning on going through the narrow channel under the Lions Gate Bridge; this is the channel through which the boys have to go to get to the race course on English Bay. Vancouver Traffic confirmed that it was safe to transit and Dave and Benj headed out with frozen decks and lines into a pea-soup like fog to get to the race course. This is the first time that either of them has gone under Lions Gate Bridge without actually seeing it. Fortunately Dave is a pilot for a living and has developed highly honed "Fly by instrument" skills, he was able to keep the boat on-track as they headed out against the current. They felt comforted knowing boat is equipped with an AIS transmitter so all of the commercial boats are be able to see them, and most importantly, all commercial traffic appears on the on board GPS. Fortunately there were no issues, and the boys were shortly at the starting line.
This race is a unique adaptation of the famed LeMans start. Instead of crossing a line, under sail after a count-down to the start, each boat has to be anchored with all sails down, and crew below-decks. Once the starting horn sounds, the crew jump on deck, bring up the anchor, rig the sails, and start racing. Dave and Benj were somewhat disadvantaged as they were double-handed and were racing against a bunch of boats with full crew. Double handing meant that the two of them had to perform all of the tasks quickly and efficiently if they wanted to be competitive.
The race was simple, around two markers and back to the finish. The challenges were the lack of wind, combined with strong current, and also the depth at the last mark.
The race committee had chosen a "Dolphin" as a turning mark. These are put in place to indicate shallow water, and while there are times when the water bear them is passable, it is generally considered poor seamanship to go near, let alone inside one of these markers.
After a brush or three with a boat that shall remain nameless, the boys were off to a great start, and quickly sped past a number of other boats, including regular frenemies Windy Feat, Flaming Red Head and were hot on the heels of Ultraman II.
On the approach to the first mark, they decided to rig a never before seen out of the bag light-air spinnaker for the next leg. It sure was ugly, but the lightweight cloth meant that the sail would remain full with less wind than the other, slightly heavier spinnakers. Their plan paid off, and the sail was drawing, even in the lightest of breezes.
For most of this leg the wind was constantly changing from light to nothing and back to light again. It was an exercise in patience and concentration. Dave was trimming the spinnaker, while Benj was taking care of the main sail and driving. This worked well, and the three way battle between Thursday's Child, Windy Feat and Ultraman II continued.
Where did the water go?
When the Race Committee started the race, the tide was in, and there was plenty of water in the bay but as the race slowly progressed the tide was quickly going out and the last mark (remember - the one that marks the shallow water?) was becoming increasingly concerning. The worry is that the boats would hit the sand, and since the tide was going out they could become stuck for a very long, and embarrassing time.
As Thursday's Child rounded the mark, her depth gauge indicated that they had a little under a foot of water under the keel. After a few very tense and quiet moments aboard they had cleared the shallows and were headed out towards deeper water.
Where did the finish line go?!
As they headed to the finish a brilliant battle between Thursday's Child, Krikket, Ultraman II, and Windy Feat broke out. Each boat was fighting to find even the slightest bit of wind. Many tacks and gybes ensued, and each boat was constantly going from first to last to first and back to last again. At this point the time limit on the race had passed, the race committee had gone home, so the boats were all just playing for fun. As a fleet they decided to race to the 'Hamburger', a fixed mark in English Bay, which would serve as a makeshift finish point. The boats battled and jockeyed to get rights and to finish first; somehow after hours of racing all of the boats managed to finish at 2:38PM. The first boat of this group was within a minute of the last boat.
In the end a little breeze had filled in from behind bringing late-runners Flaming Red head and OCD up to the rest of the fleet. They fought for every moment and Flaming Red Head managed to win the unofficial race! It's great to see them doing so well! TC managed an unofficial third place, ahead of their favorite frenemies and ultimately everyone had a fun day on the water!
This was a fantastic start to 2016!