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Photo of the Day

July 16 - Atlantic Ocean

Today's Photo of the Day is of Steven Bougon and his best friend William - we don't know who is whom in the photo - holding up a sign indicating they are 1,000 miles into the Atlantic on a trip from France to the United States. The smaller photo is of Bougon's boat FoLaLieR on approach to Panama. What's interesting about the 10,000-mile trip is that right up until the moment Bougon decided to do it, he hated sailing! To check the full story, see Letters in the August issue of Latitude 38.

Photos Courtesy

Good News Coming Out of Mexico

July 16 - San Carlos, Mexico

Terri Grossman of Marina San Carlos in the Sea of Cortez reports that earlier this month she, as part of the Marina Owners Association, traveled to Mexico City to meet with President Fox and cabinet ministers about ways to make Mexico more attractive to visiting mariners. She received some excellent news: as of September 1, diesel prices for pleasure boats will be lowered. This was almost certainly done to appeal to mega motoryachts that burn fuel by the ton, but there's no reason for cruising sailors to complain.

As for the much hoped-for change in clearing procedures so boats would only have to check in and out of Mexico - and not every time they changed port captain districts - it's not a done deal yet. But the signs are promising. For in order to make such a system really slick for visiting skippers, the Mexican government wants to put all the necessary officials together in one building. Fox has announced they will do this in Ensenada, Cabo, and Cancun. This is a little like putting the cart before the horse, but it's nonetheless encouraging.

Grossman said there is other potentially good news, but that it will have to wait until we can speak on the phone.

As for the Escalera Nautica, or 'nautical stairway' along the Baja coast, on both the Pacific side and in the Sea of Cortez, it may not be dead, but it probably should be shot. The director of Fonatur, the tourism development agency, told Grossman that they will soon start building some marinas. He mentioned Santa Rosalillita on the Pacific side, which is completely out of the way for boats headed north or south along the Baja coast. He also mentioned Fide Paz in La Paz, which is another complete loser of an idea. Why? With the soon-to-be-opened Marina Baja, La Paz will suddenly have doubled its supply of berths, so the market will be pretty saturated. Then, too, Fide Paz will have the worst location of any of the three major marinas. For not only is it the furthest in town and away from the islands, it needs constant dredging to stay open. The whole Escalera Nautica idea was a dumb one from the start, so it's comforting to know they are being consistent.

MaxZ86 Class Hits a Rough Patch at Cork Week in Ireland

July 16 - Crosshaven, Ireland

Hasso Plattner, owner of the MaxZ86 Morning Glory, has pulled out of Cork Week and his battle with Roy Disney's near sistership Pyewacket. Novato's Dee Smith of Morning Glory said it was for "safety reasons," citing the fact that the protest committee upheld Morning Glory's protest against Pyewacket for not giving them enough room at the first leeward mark yesterday. There is also the matter that the two 86s have been lapping the smaller boats on the course.

According to an article in today's dailysail.com, there's more to the rift than that. Plattner, who has gotten the better of Disney in three events so far - the Heineken and Antigua Regattas in the Caribbean, and the Newport to Bermuda Race - is believed to be unhappy that Pyewacket is being sailed much more aggressively than before, that Pyewacket has gotten new sails, and that he, an amateur, is driving against Robbie Haines, a pro, on Pyewacket. Haines counters that Pyewacket is sailing normally, that it would be unreasonable to expect the 75-year-old Disney to drive on short windward-leeward courses, and complains that Morning Glory has added a spinnaker on a bowsprit without having their rating adjusted. The accusation of Pyewacket sailing more aggressively will surprise some observers, for the Morning Glory crew is made up of the best hard-core professionals available, while Disney's program is considered half 'family' and half hard-core pro - with a slight overall edge going to Morning Glory.

Speaking more generally, Haines voiced disappointment that other MaxZ86s weren't being built, but instead, even longer boats using the same technology. As such, the 86s would be at a disadvantage for line honors. Haines wisely noted that the problem when dealing with people who can afford such expensive boats is that it's hard to get them to agree on anything. What all this means to the future of 86Z racing, and the expected battled in next year's 100th anniversary TransPac, is unclear at this time.

Want to Help Out with a Few Bucks?

July 16 - Hilo, HI

As we reported in recent 'Lectronics, Tom Wilkinson lost his Islander 32 Sound Decision on the rocks of Hawaii after falling asleep with a cup of tea in his hand at the end of a 20-day singlehanded passage from Tahiti to Hilo. In addition to losing his boat, he lost his cruising kitty when a side of the boat was bashed in.
Said to be a good guy by folks who did the Puddle Jump with him this spring, Wilkinson's goals are to see his kids back in Washington and generally put his life back together to go sailing again. He's already got a job doing construction in Hawaii, but if you - like us - feel inspired to send him a check to help out a little and give some moral support, make the check out to Tom Wilkinson and send it c/o John Messina, 15-121 Puni Lanai, Pahoa, HI 96778.

Sound Decision on the rocks

Photos William Ing/Hawaii Tribune-Herald

Tom Wilkinson

Baja Ha-Ha Paid Entries Top 60

July 16 - Tiburon

"I'm submitting for 'Lectronic Latitude readers' approval, the most current list of paid-up Baja Ha-Ha entries," reports Ha-Ha Honcho Lauren Spindler. "If anyone else would like to receive an entry pack, they need to make out a check for $15 to Baja Ha-Ha, Inc., and send it, along with a self-addressed 9 x 12 envelope with $3 postage, to 21 Apollo Road, Tiburon, CA 94920."

Raptor Dance / Valiant 50 / Bill Finkelstein & Mary Mack / Santa Rosa
Nakia / Han Christian 33 / John Gratton & Linda Hill / Redwood City
Maggie Drum / Whitby 42 / Joe & Cindy Barnes / Anacortes, WA
Music / Island Packet 40 / Bruce & Bobbie McPherson / Sausalito
Traveler / N/A / Dennis & Joan Hadley / San Marcos
Pegasus / Formosa 51 / Robert Mathews / San Diego
Con Te Partido / Bristol 32 / Jeannette Heulin / Emeryville
Mai Pen Rai / Islander 36 / Noble Brown / Benicia
New Morning / Swan 44 / Russ Irwin / Sausalito
Ayu / Hallberg-Rassy 46 / Michael Moore / Sonoma
Hangover / Olson 40 / Leonard Brownlow / Channel Is.
Jellybean / Pearson 36 / Marlene & Roy Verdery / Sausalito
Eleytheria / Kelly Peterson 44 / Abe & Amy Oros / San Francisco
Aphrodite / Pacific Seacraft 27 / Randolph & Nancy Rowland / San Francisco
Katherine / Downeaster 38 / James & Lucinda Howe / Channel Is.
Wizard / Mason 44 / Frank & Dianne Melone / San Diego
Sea Esta / Kelly Peterson 44 / Bill & Gia Cosbie / San Rafael
Avanti / Jeanneau 37 / Sam & Nadia Calmes / San Leandro
L'Esperance / Beneteau 393 / Eugene Felmar / San Pedro
Seabird V / Whitby 42 / Stan & Rochelle Gardner / San Francisco
Alchera / J/120 / Mark Deppe / San Francisco
Journey / Islander 36 / Carl Funk / Vallejo
Miela / Moody 44 / Bill & Karen Vaccaro / Chico
O2 / Talisman 37 / John Pasternak / Pt. Townsend, WA
Vamoose / Columbia 10.7 / Mike Meyers / Long Beach
Laelia / Kennex 420 cat / Howard & Judy Wang / Ventura
Chalet Mer / Irwin 46 / Gene & Pat Gehlbach / San Francisco
Seayanika / Vader 49 / Erik & Katriana Vader / Vista
Cracker Box / N/A / John & Marilyn Graham / N/A
Transcendence / Cascade 36 / Jim Reavis & Kay Endres / Portland, OR
Freedom / Offshore 54 / David Dury / San Francisco
Iron Rose / Cal 2-46 / Don & Linda Anderson / San Diego
Capella / CHB trawler / Craig & Barbara Ashley / San Francisco
At Last / Sabre 38 / DeLayne Brink / Bellingham, WA
Solstice / Pacific Seacraft 37 / John Alden / King Harbor
Seangel / Downeast 45 / Mark & Debra Wilson / Long Beach
Ariel / Catalina 470 / Jeff Chessher / Alameda
Sea Bee / Sweden 39 / Joseph Buchman / San Francisco
The Last Duck / Gemini 105 / Ray Edwards / Verdi, NV
Vinmar / Ranger 33 / Scott Haselton / San Diego
Tournesol / Valiant 32 / Scott Duncan / San Francisco
Zephyrus / Cheoy Lee 38 / Dan & Lorraine Olsen / San Diego
Liberty Call / Catalina 400 / Gene Crabb / San Diego
Tanoshii / Tayana 47 / Dick Locke & Carol Itami / Walnut Creek
King's Quest / Tayana 48 / Lynn & Stella King / San Francisco
Persistence / Kelly Peterson 44 / Tom & Wendy Hoffman / San Francisco
Rod Lee / Bounty II 41 / John Hardisty / Pt. Richmond
Wanderer III / Kelly Peterson 46 / Bob Bunton / Dana Point
Duetto Voyage / Norseman 430 / Stuart Kaplan / San Diego
Tenacious / Beneteau 45F5 / Michael & Steen Wagner / Sausalito
Windy Dancer / Cal 2-46 / John Brandes / Seattle, WA
Cherokee Eagle / Catalina 400 / Roger & Mona Elliott / San Francisco
Equity Kicker / Santa Cruz 52 / Karsten Mau / San Jose
Ahwahnee / Pearson 424 / Tom Edwards / Portland, OR
Finisterre / Nautic Saintonge 44 / Mike & Kay Heath / San Francisco
Mildred Kane / Valiant 32 / Jason Ward & Joan Wright / Emeryville
Eos / Freedom 40 / Stephen & Lynel Lemon / Santa Barbara
Last Resort / Tayana 37 / Steve & Susan Tolle / Seattle, WA
Po'oino Roa / Kelly Peterson 44 / Jerry McGraw / Newport Beach
Nala Setia / Bounty II / Richard & Lisa Cameron / Fern Ridge, OR
Sea Eagle / Hunter 42 / Dan & Marie Kinnear / Long Beach

Classy Classified Ad

July 16 - San Diego

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