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23 July 2005, 08:04 am
Pyewacket Hanging In There But Low On Options
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Transpacific Yacht Race 2005

With less than two days to sail in his 15th and final Transpacific Yacht Race Friday, Roy DISNEY was cherishing the moments Friday.
His fourth Pyewacket, a maxZ86, will probably beat the record he set with his third Pyewacket in 1999, but it would be a bittersweet achievement. A maxZ86 clone of his own, Hasso PLATTNER's Morning Glory, will likely own the new record.

Friday morning's daily position reports showed that Pyewacket had gained three miles on the German boat with the day's best run of 365 miles but still trailed by 63 miles with 702 to go. The next boat, Randall PITTMAN's Dubois 90, Genuine Risk, was another 24 miles back.

Later in the day, DISNEY, speaking by satellite phone, said, 'We've got 612 miles to go now. We're doing OK, going along at 20 knots in a nice breeze, but there's not a lot of options when we're sort of sailing down into a funnel toward the finish.'

All Pyewacket can do is follow Morning Glory through the windy channel between the islands of Molokai on the left and Oahu on the right before heading up toward Diamond Head.

But the prospect of finishing second had not diminished the other reasons why DISNEY has sailed Transpacs since 1975.

'It's lovely out here in the trades,' he said, 'and we'll always be nostalgic about that. Last night we had a full moon and I was out on deck at 0400 hours just taking it all in, the reflections on the water and the beautiful sky.'

DISNEY also noted that Morning Glory had consolidated its lead 'when they went north of us yesterday. I would have done the same thing.'

Morning Glory, averaging 13.8 knots for the 2,225 nautical mile race, was now projected to finish at 0318 HST on Sunday morning. Pyewacket, averaging 13.2, was due in at 0958 HST.

Odyssey, the 68 year old yawl that leads the 34 boats that started six days earlier with 348 miles to go, was now looking at 0503 PST.

Philippe KAHN's Hawaii based Pegasus is not home free yet in Division II as two other Transpac 52s - Roger STURGEON's Rosebud and Fred DETWILER's Trader - closed in just past the halfway point in their race. Pegasus was 17 miles in front of both boats, but Rosebud took over the chase for the King Kalakaua Trophy for best corrected handicap time, Transpac's alternative to the Barn Door, which goes to the fastest finisher.

Rosebud, Pegasus and Trader are now 1-2-3 in that order, followed by Morning Glory. Bob LANE's Andrews 61, Medicine Man, was two miles behind Pegasus but owes six to nine hours to the TP 52s. Rosebud was positioned behind but to leeward of Pegasus with a stronger sailing angle.

In Division III, Tim BEATTY's Stealth Chicken continued to set the pace, but Bob and Rob BARTON's Cipango held its two hour edge on handicap time.

The Alamitos Bay Syndicate's chartered 1D35, Tabasco, ran 209 miles to build its leads on all counts in Division IV, but the Division V scrap between Cliff THOMPSON's Super Gnat and Scott SELF and Nigel BROWN's double-handed Soap Opera turned again when the Texans jumped from seven miles behind to 15 miles in front and increased their handicap lead to almost twelve hours. Also in that class, Dan DOYLE and Bruce BURGESS' 1D35, Two Guys On the Edge, started to smell home with a 193 mile day that boosted it from sixth to third.

Davis PILLSBURY's Ralphie maintained its 50 mile lead among the Cal 40s, Odyssey held its 24 mile margin over Between the Sheets in Aloha A, and Larry HILLMAN's Swan 48, So Far, was 106 miles and 19 hours out of sight in Aloha B.

Rich Roberts. Image, Pyewacket:© Dana Lindsay
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