Shanakee II First in Luxury – and Looking to Finish First

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TRANSPAC 2001 41st Transpacific Yacht Race/
L.A.-Honolulu Transpacific Yacht Club, Sandy Martin, Commodore

July 3, 2001
For Immediate Release

*** See start photos at www.transpacificyc.org ***

SHANAKEE II FIRST IN LUXURY –
AND LOOKING TO FINISH FIRST

Thanks to a six-day headstart, a new 75-foot sloop with all the comforts of many homes apparently will be the first boat to finish the 41st Transpacific Yacht Race to Hawaii. Housing developer Jim Warmington’s Shanakee II, a David Pedrick design, started June 25 with the Aloha Division and flew past the two-thirds mark Tuesday after reporting a position only 809 nautical miles from Honolulu.

Especially in an off year for big wind, even Philippe Kahn’s new “super sled” Pegasus, the current leader in Division 1, couldn’t afford to spot Shanakee II nearly a week and hope to beat it to the Diamond Head finish line. Shanakee II has averaged 157 miles per day and has logged 211 miles each of the past two days, which means it should finish Saturday or Sunday.

Pegasus, also 75 feet but relatively stripped out for racing, found enough breeze to sail 293 miles in the 24 hours before Tuesday morning’s roll call, but it would have to average 363 to overtake Warmington’s floating mini-palace. Transpac’s 24-hour record is 353 miles by Doug Baker’s maxi sled Magnitude in 1999.

Along the way, watch captain Brad Avery reported from Shanakee, chef Ron Merickel has outdone himself in his usual top-notch cooking.

An important point, however, is that although the coveted Barn Door trophy has “first to finish” carved across its koa wood face, Shanakee II probably won’t win it. When Transpac went to staggered starts a few years ago, the definition was changed to “monohull with the fastest elapsed time,” and that will almost certainly be Pegasus, Bob McNulty’s Chance or Roy E. Disney’s Pyewacket, the record holder and defending champion.

At least, after a slow couple of opening days, Pyewacket’s record of 7 1/2 days seems secure. One of the three would have to finish before 1 a.m. PDT Monday (10 p.m. Sunday Hawaiian time).

Mark Rudiger, navigating Pegasus, said before the start, “All we need is 20 knots [of wind] or better to set a record.” But that’s something they have yet to see, although there are reports of such breeze down the track.

Through the twice-daily roll call position reports, Rudiger and his counterparts on the other boats are watching the track of the forerunners, which has been a lot like following the fluctuations of the stock market. In a rare year when the rhumb (direct) line has become their friend, they have seen the Alohas in particular dive south after the start, than swing up west and then north to the rhumb before breaking off to run parallel to it at the midway point. Two boats, the Japanese Division III entry Bengal II and the Aloha 65-foot ketch Bonaire, were actually above the rhumb – a deadly location in almost any other year.

Aloha boats that figured out the new route best have been Shanakee II, Wendy Siegal’s Cal 40 Willow Wind, Sunset Beach, Calif., and a pair of wily Wylies, Peter and Patricia Anderson’s Stardust, Laguna Beach, Calif., and Barry Ruff’s Axapac, Vancouver, B.C.

In their wakes, the lead boats are following similar, if less radical, patterns. In Division III, which started Saturday, Brent Vaughan’s Andrews 53 Cantata, Oceanside, Calif., is the race’s overall leader on corrected time, followed closely for overall honors by Seth Radow’s Sydney 40 OD-T Bull in Division IV.

Rob Kothe of Sydney Yachts in Australia, who owns a boat similar to Radow’s, said, “It’s just perfect conditions for the 40s. They’re very comfortable in light air. [Radow’s boat] is targeted for this race.”

Brookfield Homes’ Coconut Plantation at Ko Olina is a supporter of Transpac 2001. Stratos Mobile Networks is the official communications supplier, providing satellite telephones to facilitate monitoring of the fleet. For more information please contact Stephanie Thomassen at (800) 250-8962 or (206) 633-5888.

TRANSPAC CAMEO

Les Vasconcellos, a Transpac veteran and familiar figure in Hawaiian sailing, did the 1999 race with Bruce Burgess, doublehanded. Burgess was a late substitute for Two Guys On the Edge owner Dan Doyle, who had a sudden business crisis. It took them 12 1/2 days. This time Doyle is doing it with Burgess on his 30-foot boat.

“Wow, have I been lucky,” Vasconcellos said this week. “I missed the ’79 Transpac and also the ’91, and now this looks like another light one. Pretty good, considering I sailed 10 between ’73 and ’99. For their sake, I hope the wind picks up good for them.”

As for the weather in Hawaii, Vasconcellos reported, “It has been hot and muggy with little wind since Saturday.”

Standings at 8:30 a.m. July 3 (by handicap ratings):

DIVISION I (started July 1)
1. Pegasus (R/P 75), Philippe Kahn, Santa Cruz, Calif., 1,853 miles to go.
2. Chance (R/P 74), Bob McNulty, Corona del Mar, Calif., 1,857.
3. Pyewacket (Reichel/Pugh 73), Roy E. Disney, Los Angeles, Calif., 1,861.
4. Merlin’s Reata (Lee 68), Al Micallef, Ft. Worth, Tex., 1,932.

DIVISION II (started July 1)
1. Grand Illusion (Santa Cruz 70), James McDowell, Haiku, H.I. 1,912.
2. J-Bird III (Transpac 52), David Janes, Newport Beach, Calif., 1,918.
3. Taxi Dancer (R/P 68), Brian W. Mock, Corona del Mar, Calif., 1,930.
4. Ragtime (Spencer 65), Hui Holokai Syndicate, Owen Minney/Trisha Steele, Honolulu, 1,944.
5. Yassou (Transpac 52), Jim and Nancy Demetriades, Beverly Hills, Calif., 1,962.
6. Mongoose (SC 70), Robert Saielli, La Jolla, Calif., 1,989.
7. Medicine Man (Andrews 61), Bob Lane, Long Beach, Calif., 1,987.
8. DH–√Čtranger (Jutson 50), Howard Gordon, San Luis Obispo, Calif., 1,994.

DIVISION III (started June 30)
1. Cantata (Andrews 53), Brent Vaughan, Oceanside, Calif., 1,592.
2. Firebird (Nelson/Marek 55), Greg Sands, Long Beach, Calif., 1,620.
3. Bengal II (Ohashi 52), Yoshihiko Murase, Nagoya, Japan, 1,581.
4. Rocket Science (Riptide 55), Nguyen Le, Amsterdam, 1,584.
5. Baronesa V (Open 40), Shuichi Ogasawara, Miyagi, Japan, 1,603.

DIVISION IV (started June 30)
1. Bull (Sydney 40 OD-T), Seth Radow, Marina del Rey, Calif., 1,668.
2. Sensation (1D35), Mike Thomas, Detroit, Mich., 1,685.
3. Ouch (J/120), Ted Mayes, San Juan Capistrano, Calif., 1,706.
4. DH–Watercolors (Sabre 402), Michael Abraham, Newport Beach, Calif., 1,770.
5. Uproarious (Olson 40), Robert Bussard, Santa Fe, N.M., 1,768.
6. DH–Two Guys On the Edge (Sonoma 30), Dan Doyle, Honolulu, H.I., 1,808.
7. Mystere (Swan 42), Jorge Morales, Laguna Niguel, Calif., 1,812.
WITHDRAWN — LawnDart (Fast 40), Bill Allan, Nanaimo, B.C., 2,175. DH-Doublehanded

ALOHA DIVISION A (started June 25)
1. Willow Wind (Cal 40), Wendy Siegal, Sunset Beach, Calif., 1,014.
2. Seda (Ericson 41), Josef Sedivec, Bonita, Calif., 1,109.
3. Shanakee II (Pedrick 75), Jim Warmington, Balboa, 809.
4. Sea Dancer (Ericson 35), Al Wheatman, Marina del Rey, 1,162.
5. Gecko (Tartan 41), Jim Fabrick, Laguna Beach, 1,128.
6. Bonaire (Moody 65), Gil Jones and Associates, Newport Beach, 1,062.

ALOHA DIVISION B (started June 25)
1. Stardust (Wylie 46), Peter and Patricia Anderson, Laguna Beach, 941.
2. Axapac (Wylie 39), Barry Ruff, Vancouver, B.C., 1,032.

TRACKING CHART
Who is making the boldest move south? Who is hanging too long in the north? Who will have the best sailing angle to the finish? Follow your favorite Transpac boats across the Pacific with the tracking chart on the official Web site at www.transpacificyc.org.

ATTENTION WEBMASTERS
Please feel free to post these releases to your Web sites and establish a link to the Transpac Web site at www.transpacificyc.org.

TRANSPAC PUBLICITY
Rich Roberts (310) 835-2526 cell phone (310) 213-2526 richroberts@compuserve.com

WEB PAGE
www.transpacificyc.org
Walt Niemczura, Web Master

ENTRY LIST
(In alphabetical order)

Division I (starts July 1, 1 p.m.)

Chance (R/P 74), Bob McNulty, Corona del Mar, Calif.
Medicine Man (Andrews 61), Bob Lane, Long Beach, Calif.
Merlin’s Reata (Lee 68), Al Micallef, Ft. Worth, Tex.
Pegasus (R/P 75), Philippe Kahn, Santa Cruz, Calif.
Pyewacket (Reichel/Pugh 73), Roy E. Disney, Los Angeles, Calif.

Division II (starts July 1, 1 p.m.)

DH–√Čtranger (Jutson 50), Howard Gordon, San Luis Obispo, Calif.
Grand Illusion (Santa Cruz 70), James McDowell, Haiku, H.I.
J-Bird III (Transpac 52), David Janes, Newport Beach, Calif.
Mongoose (SC 70), Robert Saielli, La Jolla, Calif.
Ragtime (Spencer 65), Hui Holokai Syndicate, Owen Minney/Trisha Steele, Honolulu, Hawaii
Taxi Dancer (R/P 68), Brian W. Mock, Corona del Mar, Calif.
Yassou (Transpac 52), Jim and Nancy Demetriades, Beverly Hills, Calif.

Division III (starts June 30, 1 p.m.)

Baronesa V (Open 40), Shuichi Ogasawara, Miyagi, Japan
Bengal II (Ohashi 52), Yoshihiko Murase, Nagoya, Japan
Cantata (Andrews 53), Grant Vaughan, San Francisco, Calif.
Firebird (Nelson/Marek 55), Greg Sands, Long Beach, Calif.
Rocket Science (Riptide 55), Nguyen Le, Amsterdam

Division IV (starts June 30, 1 p.m.)

Bull (Sydney 40 OD-T), Seth Radow, Marina del Rey, Calif.
LawnDart (Fast 40), Bill Allan, Nanaimo, B.C.
Mystere (Swan 42), Jorge Morales, Laguna Niguel, Calif.
Ouch (J/120), Ted Mayes, San Juan Capistrano, Calif.
Sensation (1D35), Mike Thomas, Detroit, Mich.
DH–Two Guys On the Edge (Sonoma 30), Dan Doyle, Honolulu, H.I.
Uproarious (Olson 40), Robert Bussard, Santa Fe, N.M.
DH–Watercolors (Sabre 402), Michael Abraham, Newport Beach, Calif.

(DH-Doublehanded)