‘The Black Pearl – A Pirate Ship’

The perfect gift for the holiday season! Only 150 copies of 7000 left!

This is the last chance to purchase a limited edition copy of Captain Cayard’s memoirs of the Pirates of the Caribbean team’s momentous race around the world.

Imagine what it was like onboard ‘The Black Pearl’ for Captain Cayard and his Pirate crew as they competed in Volvo Ocean Race 2005-2006.

Copies are $25 or $50 for autographed copies. All proceeds are in support of youth sailing in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Buy Now

Scuttlebutt Offshore Championship

SEAMANSHIP 101
– The lower shroud exploded with a loud ‘bang’ on Paul Cayard’s IC 24 on the return race from The Baths during Monday’s Scuttlebutt Offshore Championship held at the Bitter End YC in the BVI. Cayard quickly tacked the boat and handed the helm to BEYC guest John Stephenson. Without wasting a motion, Cayard kicked off his flip flops and climbed the rig with both a spinnaker halyard and topping lift in his teeth. After completing a very crude jury rig, he took back the helm and calmly won the race, and the two-race championship by 32 seconds over Bruce Kirby, with Dave Ullman a half minute further back in third place. The windward- leeward races of the Vineyard Vines Pro-Am Regatta at the BEYC starts on Tuesday, with guests of the resort crewing for the invited pro skippers – Cayard, Kirby, Ullman, Dawn Riley, Zach Railey, Ed Baird, Rod Johnstone and Keith Musto.

Hula Girl Update

Things have been going very well on board Hula Girl and we are all in high spirits. Currently our position looks really good. From what I understand we are winning our Division (E) and have been gaining the entire time. We are the southernmost boat in the fleet and as of this morning’s roll call, we were 60 miles ahead of the next closest boat. Not bad for only being 600 miles into the race.

Here is what has been going on since our start on Thursday. We started at 1445 and sailed out under the Golden Gate in a stiff 25 knots of wind. After tacking a few times to get out away from land, we settled in on starboard tack and began our dive south. The first night was very windy, wet and cold. We had between 20 and 30 knots of wind, with solid 10 foot waves, sometimes larger. Since then we have set a reaching spinnaker and have been moving along with good pace surfing all the while. The wind has steadily shifted aft and gotten lighter, so we have switched to our running kite today. As we get spun around the Pacific High and cross the ridge, the wind should continue to shift. Soon the wind will shift so far aft that it will be more favorable to sail on port, at which point we will gybe. From then on we will be in the strong NE tradewinds and will continue to gybe between starboard and port, to take advantage of every wind shift and squall.

Life onboard has been pleasant for the most part. The first night was rough and wet, just about everything down below got wet as well. Today with the lighter winds and wind shift the boat has flattened and things are beginning to dry out. I took a shower and changed my shirt for the first time this afternoon. We have quite the spa on board: baby wipes, a bucket of salt water and some joy dish soap! Ironically we haven’t been able to enjoy the sunshine or full moon yet. We have had 100% cloud cover since the start. We have been eating freeze dried food which to be honest I am already sick of. Clif bars and dried fruit have been tiding me over though. We had one fire drill yesterday. Our port spinnaker halyard broke as we were sailing at 16 knots. We quickly put the kite back up on the starboard halyard, and repaired the port halyard soon after. Re-running the broken halyard through the mast was quite a challenge; we had to take down the main sail so that Robbie could go up the mast and re-run the repaired spinnaker halyard.

I think in the 80 sum hours that we have been out here I have already seen three nets and a variety of floating trash. More and more I’m realizing how important it is for us to take care of the ocean and how hard of a task that has become in today’s world. We have seen a fair amount of sea life: a few flying fish, had a squid land on the deck and Allie spotted a turtle this morning, a rare sight so far from land.

Today, Robbie reminded me that exactly a year ago the two of us were sailing the Transpac together in the same part of the Pacific Ocean. That’s what I love most about this sport. The life long friendships and memories created out on the ocean are truly priceless. The stories told and laughs shared are really what make the adventure worthwhile. I already know that one day I’ll look back on this Pacific Cup and smile thinking about the great memories that we are currently making together.

Mark Towill
Hula Girl

Hula Girl – 30° 38′ N 131° 24′ W

It’s been a rough first 48 hours. Compared to our 48 hour training, the weather has been cold and quite windy and we have yet to see much sea life. This morning our spinnaker halyard broke with four people on deck. Two more crew quickly rushed up to retrieve the kite out of the water. The port winch is chewing up our spin sheets so we had Mo quickly repair them as we don’t have many sheets out here in the open ocean.

We are still adjusting to the watch times, especially me as I haven’t slept for about 40 of the 48 hours. The food isn’t all that bad. Most of us enjoy what Mark likes to call “the reds” which means anything like pasta with red sauce, lasagna, and spaghetti with meat balls.

The weather is starting to get warmer now that we went over the ridge. Cloudy skies still remain, but the sun and the moon manage to poke their way through every now and then. It’s an amazing feeling of being in the ocean and not seeing land or anyone in sight. You get a feeling of how big our world truly is.

The Hula Girl is no five star hotel. As I mentioned, I had gotten no sleep until just a while ago due to the thrashing of the boat against the waves. Also the boys are really starting to smell. I had the honor of washing their dirty, sweaty socks today because I couldn’t stand the smell. One good thing about having all these boys with me is I get to hear a lot of good jokes, some at my expense, but they still manage to keep the smiles aboard. I am partaking in the physical activities such as trimming and grinding from which I have bruises all over, sore ribs, traps, and back, but it’s all worth it in the end to get to Hawaii!

I’m going into my bunk now for four hours of sleep, then back up for the 2200-0200 shift.

Allie

Hula Girl- Friday

We are finally headed to Hawaii. After months of work on the boat, we get to go sailing!!

With 2 reefs in the main and the #4 up the tender SC 50 got a good start in front of my home club of 32 years and we tacked and crossed the fleet heading for the ebb tide and the Golden Gate.

Morpheus ( a Schumacher 50) had a bit more stability and took over the lead for a while but as soon as we cracked sheets a bit the Hula Girl was off.

The night was breezy, 25-30 most of the night and our top speed was 21.3. I could not believe a boat from 1980 could go that fast with at #4, genoa staysail and two reefs. About 0200 with a bit of moon shining through the fog, to help, we set the blast reacher and then at 0600 we set the Jib top. The scene of the night was very cool, rugged and rough, but cool. The moon made a silver shin to the water and the waves were big and cresting so it was very impressive to those who have not been to seas in a sailboat. The wind has moderated to 20 and lifted to 340 so we are not hitting the big speeds any more. Looks like we did ok with our group during the first night.

I am downloading today’s grib now to see if there are any changes but from yesterdays grib, it looks to me like we are all having a tough time getting far enough south. Some people look like they want to cut the corner a bit. Or maybe they don’t want to but they don’t have certain sails. That is what is tough to figure out in ocean racing and even tougher when you have all different sizes and designs racing each other. I spent exactly two minutes figuring out range and bearing to three of our competitors. that’s enough at this point.

Life onboard is good but it has been rough. Water got everywhere as you can imagine in 30 true. My sailing instructions and communications plan got soaked so I am going to have to try to resurrect them when we get the warmer weather and start running.

Allie cooked us dinner (beef stew with peas and potatoes) and has been grinding the main. That’s right, grinding the main for the guys. She is a trouper. No seas sickness onboard! Ralfie and I took the first headsail change on the bow just so the young guys can’t say we made them do all the bad jobs. But that may have been our last, too.

So now is the time for me to do my navigator thing for a couple of hours then try to get a nap. Not a lot of sleep last night.

In closing I want to say that I am thinking about my good friend and shipmate, Mark Rudiger, together we won the 1998 Whitbread Round the World Race as skipper and navigator, and with whom I have spent countless hours in the nav station looking at gribs, tweaking gribs, etc. Rudi tough me everything I know about Ocean Racing from a strategy standpoint. Right know Rudi is fighting another battle with cancer. I know how he fights…looks nice, acts nice, but is very intense and very competitive. I know Rudi will succeed in this race too! Good on you Rudi!

Paul Cayard

Sailing in Marin: Next generation of Cayards head to sea

Danny and Allie are descended on both sides of their family from famous sailors. Their mother Icka’s father, Swedish ocean racing veteran Pelle Peterson, was one of the true pioneers of the sport, winning three Olympic medals before they were born. Their father, Paul Cayard, won the Whitbread Round the World Race when they were still in grammar school.

On Thursday, the Kentfield teenagers get their chance to try out ocean racing firsthand when they set sail in the Pacific Cup race from San Francisco to Hawaii on the Santa Cruz 50 Hula Girl, racing in a crew of eight, composed of two adults and six young sailors ranging in age from 18-23.

One very experienced adult will be on deck at all times, either their dad Paul or German-born sailing coach Ralf Steitz, 46. Two of the young crew, 22-year-old Mill Valley residents Cameron McCloskey and Morgan Gutenkunst, were on the Marin Catholic High sailing club team with Danny and Allie. Mark Towill, 19, of Hawaii and Robert Kane, 23, of Connecticut are experienced beyond their years – they sailed in last year’s Transpacific Yacht Race to Hawaii.

The idea for the Hula Girl project originated when Paul Cayard experienced an epiphany, a spiritual flash as he approached his 50th birthday. He knew that he wanted, more than anything, to make some memories by sailing with his children to Hawaii. He could sail anytime with other professional sailors in the grand prix racing circuit. That’s his job. But sailing with his children would be special, a trip the three of them would never forget.

Paul broached the idea and the kids were excited. Both sailed small boats, but never big boats, and neither had sailed on the ocean. For them, the trip meant spending time with family and friends, and seeing if they liked ocean sailing and wanted to do more of it in the future.

“I am not expecting to win the race, I just think going will be fun and a cool memory,” said Danny, an engineering student at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. “Definitely for me, it’s not about winning, but being with my family,” said Allie, who starts her freshman year this fall at the University of Colorado in Boulder.

Most of their friends cannot even imagine sailing across an ocean.

“When I told them I was racing to Hawaii they said, ‘Wow that is really a cool thing, not to hop on a plane to get there,'” Danny said.

Added Allie: “My girlfriends think that I am crazy and that it would be basically torture to be out there for 10 days and not have a shower and girl things around. But they also think that it is cool that I am doing something out of their experience.”

The Cayard kids took sailing lessons as young children, but weren’t interested in pursuing the family sport, seeking their own path by playing soccer and lacrosse instead.

“For me, it was because my Dad was doing so much sailing that I didn’t want to do it,” Allie said.

When Danny started at Marin Catholic, a lot of the kids were interested in having him on the sailing team, so he joined. “By then I was a sophomore, and I had fun and enjoyed the team,” Danny said. Allie soon followed her brother onto the sailing team, where she raced FJ and 420 dinghies.

Now Danny sails high performance, extreme sailboats, 29ers and 18 foot skiffs. “Sometimes it helps you being the son of a well-known sailor, but sometimes people try and put pressure on you to do well. That is why my mom stopped sailing when she was younger. I do a different kind of sailing than my dad did as a kid. I have had some successes and some failures, and I think of it as doing my own thing.”

Their dad told them this is an easy ride compared to the Southern Ocean, so they aren’t afraid. But will they like it? Will they be able to sleep on a boat at sea? Will they be able to stand eating the freeze-dried food?

“It will be a surreal experience to see nothing but water,” said Allie, who plans to write a blog from sea appearing on www.cayardsailing.com.

About two dozen sailors from Marin are in the PacCup, spread among several boats: E.T., Flash, Gavilan, Hula Girl, Low Speed Chase, Morpheus, Ohana, Pegasus, Sapphire, Sweet Okole, Valis. Track the race at www.pacificcup.org.

Jan Pehrson
Marin Independent Journal
http://www.marinij.com/sports/ci_9900742

Our Last Practice Session

July 8th-10th was our last practice session before the start of the Pacific Cup. We finally had everyone together – Danny, Paul, Ralfie, Cameron, Morgan, Mark, Robbie and me. Our goal was to be offshore for 48 hrs to try to understand what racing will be like.

Pacific Cup Has Biggest Fleet In Years

San Francisco, California, USA: The Pacific Cup race organizers announced the final starting lineup, with a total 61 boats competing in the biennial race to Hawaii. Twenty-two boats including two double-handed divisions are set to begin the race early afternoon Monday, July 14, with additional starts for faster boats through Saturday, July 19.

Most racers anticipate arrival at Oahu’s Kaneohe Bay around July 26-29, with that date range varying by several days on either side depending on weather, course selection, and boathandling. Notable participants in this year’s race include Paul Cayard and his family aboard Hula Girl and Philippe Kahn aboard Pegasus.

Saturday’s start, Division F, consists of the fastest boats skippered by dedicated and aggressive racers. Philippe Kahn on Pegasus (OP-50) hopes to best the record for fastest doublehanded passage now held by Stan Honey for his passage on the 70-foot Mongoose.

As the fastest-rated boat in the fleet, Kahn should set the pace for the rest. The other boats in Division F are fully-crewed, generally meaning they will benefit from less fatigue and more aggressive sail handling. 70-foot sleds like Velos, Holua, and Rage will spar with Pegasus as well as Criminal Mischief and Flash, designed to take advantage of light weight, surfing all the way to Hawaii.

2008 will see some special trophies. Blue Water Sailing magazine has sponsored a prize this year for the “Fastest Family Afloat.” At least eight boats have declared as family efforts, with at least three relatives aboard, or two for doublehanders. These include perennial Pac Cup buffs Jim Quanci and Mary Lovely aboard Green Buffalo, the Jensen family aboard Alternate Reality, and the Cayard family aboard Hula Girl. Competition for the prize is expected to be spirited.

Race co-organizer Storm Trysail Club has sponsored a Team Trophy. This prize will go to the three boat team from a single yacht club with combined best performances against the overall fleet and each boat’s division. Nearly half the entrants have joined in teams defending the reputations of the Saint Francis, Richmond, Encinal, Corinthian of Portland, and San Diego yacht clubs, as well as the Singlehanded Sailing Society.

All monohulls compete for the Pacific Cup, the trophy that gives the race its name. This is awarded to the boat completing the course with the best corrected time. Super-racers compete with modest family programs for this coveted prize.

In the highly variable conditions of the Pacific, and under the strictures of the race, it’s as likely that the trophy will be carried away by a general purpose sailboat of modest design as it is to be taken by an all-out race machine.

Preparation continues for the Pacific Cup

The Hula Girl, a Santa Cruz 50, untied her lines yesterday afternoon at 1600 local time with 8 crew onboard. Destination unknown, pretty much wherever the wind would take us. In our case we have been very lucky. Amazingly, the wind has been very light, 5-8 knots from the South. Currently (1000 local) we are running, yes running in a Northwesterly direction off the coast of San Francisco. As I said, very unusual.

We are on a two day, offshore training sail in preparation for the Pacific Cup, the race from San Francisco to Hawaii, which starts on July 17th.

We have been blessed with plenty of sealife so far. Just off Point Bonita, the Northern entrance to SF Bay, we literally ran over a whale. Luckily, she did not hit our rudder. About two hours later we saw yet another. I am surprised to see whales around SF at this time of year and so close to the Bay. This morning we saw plenty of sharks. We see the tip of thier fins as they circle around, just below the surface. Last night we could hear seals barking. Maybe they are not there anymore. The water is nice and clear now that we are away from the Bay. This is a great opportunity to run the watermaker.

We had 20 knots from the West as we slipped out of the Golden Gate, but that wind quickly dropped and backed within 45 minutes. So we had an easy night of light air reaching, south then west of the Farallon Islands and now we are off Bodega Bay. The plan is to use this southeasterly wind to get northwest and then to run back with the northwesterly which should fill back in this afternoon. This will give us a long run way back to SF tonight to test spinnakers and check our polars.

We have run the watch system, had nighttime steering practice, made a good lasagna dinner (freeze dried lasagna which would make my Italian friends cringe) and we just had breakfast, granola with blueberries and coffee. So we are not hurting.

We have found many things that are not quite perfect so this will give us a chance to address them before the race. Some of these things were are fixing out here like, splicing different lengths to some of our halyards and strops.

I have taken a few photos, but I did not load the software for that yet and don’t know if I will be able to transmit those larger files but I will try to work on that this weekend.

That all for now from the Hula crew.

Danny Cayard, Allie Cayard, Mark Towill, Robbie Kane, Ralfie Steitz, Cameron McCloskey, Morgan Gutenkunst &Paul Cayard

Newport Bermuda Race

On Friday evening, 198 boats headed out of Newport following the start of the 42nd edition of the Bermuda Race.

Paul Cayard is onboard Jim Swartz’s brand new STP65 Moneypenny as watch captain for this demanding 635 mile race. The competition will be intense in the St David’s Lighthouse Division with the likes of Puma’s VO70 Il Mostro and Alex Jackson’s Speedboat competing. However, the weather is expected to be light for the first few days as the fleet makes its way towards the Gulf Stream.

This is only Cayard’s second time competing in the Newport-Bermuda Race. “The only time I ever went in this race was in 1982. I was here (Newport) getting ready for the America’s Cup,” Cayard recalled. “So I was stuck up in a loft going through a bunch of old Courageous sails when someone asked if I wanted to go on the Bermuda Race. “I said, ‘Yeah, get me out of jail here,’ and we took off. That year it blew so hard we broke our rudder and never finished.”

Stay tuned for an update from Cayard and click here to track STP 65 Moneypenny.

http://www.charthorizon.com/races/2008_newport_bermuda/htdocs/boat_report.php?boat=Moneypenny