DAY 11 - July 19 2018
Here is a little update of the crew aboard :
"This might just be our last mail from somewhere on the ocean. Our next one should be written on “terra firma”. About 180 nm to go, hoping to spot Hawaii on the horizon. The Race Committee estimates our arrival around 7pm tomorrow as the 1st boat to reach the finish buoy, but we are hoping to reach the buoy around lunch time. Our biggest competitor, of course, remains the all carbon STP65 with an all pro crew who left San Francisco with the last starters and is still threatening to steal our place in the line of honor. We are pushing hard on Girafon, we stay at the helm and bargain with the gods hoping the winds will not be as predicted: rapid changes in strength and direction. We are thrilled to be leading ahead of the usual suspects from our first race! I was not always positive that I would participate this year for many reasons. However, Beneteau blew everyone out of the water with their new Figaro 3. For us, crossing the finish line in Hawaii is already quite a victory after all the headaches we dealt with prior to the start. I met Matthieu about 5 weeks ago: highly recommended by two legendary sailors, very young and technically gifted. It’s his first ocean race and he had only seen pictures of Girafon before coming to San Francisco. When we met, I told him: “I am your age, but I have about 20 more years of experience. It should work out just fine!”. We found our “groove” quickly: a boat is only as good as her crew. He invested himself in the project fully and he worked tirelessly. He even took over my galley! We lived through a few shitty adventures, but those are the ones that make a crew: we have become brothers. When we finally cross that finish line, we will do so with the best memories. Right now, the kid is surfing at 12 knots through the waves: he can’t wait to get to Hawaii! He is thoroughly enjoying his last day at sea before the arrival buoy. I can’t thank him enough: his heart has been in this from the beginning! And of course, our baby girafe with her little orange legs was born under auspicious stars. I stepped on that boat exactly one year ago in Saint-Gilles Croix de Vie and now we are almost in Hawaii! Hard to believe! Being the test pilot of that project has been an honor. The boat is good, we feel good in it and safe at all times. In about 2 weeks, she will make the crossing to Long Beach in a container, on a cargo ship, but she will be back next year for the 50th Transpacific Race between Long Beach and Diamond Head (HI). That’s it for now. See you soon! Charles. "
Remember the Girafon team is Sailing for ALS.
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