Saturday, May 20, 2006

Savannah Challenge Race Updates

Here you will find the latest information regarding this upcoming weekend's Savannah Challenge. If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact Randy Draftz at .

5/19/06 22:00
They are off and running literally, nine boats left the Charleston Harbor for their respective turning marks off the Georgia coast. Midnight Rider a Turbo Rigged Santa Cruz 70 lead the A fleet followed by the J120 Emocean, the J109 Hoodoo, the Sabre 362 Buena Vida and the Beneteau 35s5 Andiamo. Fleet B is the non spinnaker who were all tightly bunched with Tohidu, Lyric, Naut On Call and Drifter chasing each other out of the harbor. With a strong westerly and ebb tide it didn’t the fleet very long. Forecasts were for the westerly winds to gradually ease up and go more south making for upwind beat to turning mark. At 9:30 referencing the NOAA weather buoys there appeared more breeze offshore 14knots out of 200 degrees compare to the 8 knots inshore at approximately 230 degrees. Heading to the turning buoy 234 degrees it should be a long night.

5/20/2006 7:00 EDT

At 3:00 EDT this morning Midnight Rider was rounding the Savannah Light buoy marking the half way point for the race. From referencing the weather buoys it looks like the buoy is making a good weather mark. Current wind conditions still have the wind out of the southwest at about 14 knots with wave heights about three feet. We would expect the next boat to round to be Emocean. If Emocean is sailing to her rating she would be rounding roughly 2.5 hours behind Midnight Rider. Unfortunately if they were dead upwind to the mark the extra distance sailed will favor the larger Midnight Rider. With the current conditions and forecast I would expect Midnight Rider could be finishing before noon today.

5/20/2006 11:00 EDT

Midnight Rider finishes! Midnight Rider with the crew hiking hard crossed the finish line this morning 10:28:18. Emocean called in earlier this morning reporting their rounding of the Savannah Light buoy at 8:44 this morning, Wind was holding out of the southwest continuing to make the mark upwind for all the competitors. Emocean did see Hoodoo the J109 and said they appeared about another hour away from the turning mark. Emocean was making 8 knots running downwind back to the harbor entrance. If the wind holds out of the southwest at its present 14 knots Emocean should be finishing around 6:00 pm this evening well after Midnight Rider’s time allowance expires.

13:00 EDT

B Fleet rounds the Port Royal turning mark. Tohidu was first around at 12:18 followed by Naut On Call at 12:33 with Lyric close to rounding at the time of this posting. Drifter was several miles back after finding a wind hole near shore. Wind is starting to lighten up a bit but continuing to blow out of the southwest. With 58 miles to go for the leaders in B Fleet it is looking like a finishing times will be around 22:00 to 23:00 if the wind holds. The remaining A Fleet competitiors will be finishing early this evening.

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