Philippe Kahn, Pegasus Racing, Transpac 2007

July 26th, 15:15 hst – lat 21 39 N, lon 156 52 W

Wild night. We hooked onto a massive squall monster, saw 32 knots of wind and sustained 18 knots of boat speed for the longest time. That coupled with a massive header completely changed our finish plans. The breeze has eased to 22-25 knots and we are sailing fast to the finish line. We are fully…

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July 25th, 18:00 utc – lat 22 31 N, lon 153 23 W

The night was very different. The wind filled in from the back and our squall monsters seemed harder to find. Then we found ourselves surrounded by dolphins in the bright moonlight. Magical. The position reports in the morning give us the thumbs up: 7 jibes through the night, very few glitches and we held our…

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July 25th, 13:30 hst – lat 22 51 N, long 154 24 W

I am switching all my blogging to Hawaii Standard Time (HST) in order for everything to make sense for the finish. That’s because there are diurnal effects, building sea breeze influences etc.. that are easily visualized when one thinks in local time. This morning at 3 am hst, the Diamond Head Lighthouse bore 242 degrees…

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July 25th, 03:00 utc – lat 22 30 N, lon 150 52 W

We sailed all day trying to stay centered on the race course in order to have options as the weather patterns have been too unpredictable. So we jibed about 5 times, I can’t quite remember how many. One thing that is clear is that we are getting much better at jibing this boat. We’re having…

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July 24th, 21:15 utc – lat 22 37 N, lon 149 55 W

Start with the end in mind, but the journey has to be the reward. In our case, the end is the finish line by Diamond Head lighthouse. The Journey, well that’s some of the best sailing that I have ever done. Squalls are building quickly this afternoon. The fleet is really spread around the race course.…

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July 24th, 02:15 utc – lat 23 45 N, lon 147 13 W

The Squalls are monsters. They just swallow you up if you are on the wrong board. If you are on the right board, you can ride them for hours and make great progress. The thing about them is that they grow and grow throughout the evening and the night, and then in the morning the…

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July 23rd, 22:15 utc – lat 24 09 N, lon 146 38 W

I realize that my last few updates have been short, at best. That’s because things have been full on. No relief. Now we’ve got a breather. The ‘drenched by the cold rain fingers’ (yes, there is a cold front around here coming through) can start typing again after some weather crunching. I figure I would…

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July 23rd, 14:00 pst

We’ve been ‘hunted down’ by a squall all day. Just like a giant Pac-Man trying to eat us up… The bad news is that we just noticed that there is still a big mangle of stuff at the bottom of our keel. We were not feeling that our boat was making her usual speed and…

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July 23rd, 11:00 pst

It was big, mangled, and tangled. It was a big fish, a net, or a combination of both. We had to back the boat. That was a major undertaking. This boat isn’t meant to go backwards. Now we’re back, sailing under the rain. Today we will be “squall-busting.”

July 23rd, 09:45 pst

Yes now there is enough light. We use our endoscope to look at the keel… There is a large object wedged on the keel. We’ve got to get it off. We knew that we were going much slower. Now we know why! More later.

July 23rd, 00:30 utc – lat 25 03 N, lon 143 42 W

Richard and I have been battling squalls all day. Our goal was to get into the pressure that is slightly South of us, without going too far South and avoiding having to jibe at a bad angle. So we elected to sail slower, but directly to Honolulu. That gives a South-slant to our course. It’s…

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July 23rd, The Pegasus Open 50

1. Mast 2. Winch that is holding Richard up (central winch) 3. Grinder that I used to haul him up 4. Cabin Pod 5. Yours truly, Philippe 6. Two tillers 7. Sail bags with sails on the bow 8. Mainsail 9. Spinnaker

July 23rd, 06:45 pst

Richard taps his foot 7 times on deck. Just an hour of sleep in the last 24 hours… Time to jibe, we’re on a massive lift. We now jibe Melges 24 style. A bit daring, we just send it. Slowly at first, letting that clue pass around the forestay while Richard eases. The main is…

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July 23rd, 04:45 pst – lat 24 11 N, lon 145 15 W

Wild Night in the North Pacific! In the last 6 hours, we saw it all: 10 to 28 knots, big thump (we hit ‘something’), multiple jibes in the night and one of the few times that we both trusted the auto-pilot so that I could crunch some weather files while Richard was off watch sleeping.…

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July 22nd, 15:30 utc – lat 25 25 N, lon 142 23 W

Five times during the dark and squally night, Richard and I wanted to jibe either to stay in front of a windy squall or to take the radical right shift induced by the cloud. Yet just the two of us need over 30 minutes to jibe safely at night. We are comparing our track with…

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July 22 09:45 utc – lat 25 17 N, lon 141 33 W

Squally night. They come from right to left. So far we’ve been really lucky. The wind lifted a lot. If it persists, we will jibe in the morning at daybreak. There are flying fish everywhere. As I was steering down a wave, I got hit in the arm by a big one. One does get…

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Saturday July 21st, 20:00 utc – lat 25 20 N, lon 138 59 W

This has been a busy day for us on board the mighty Pegasus. Our crew of two has had to rebuild pad eyes, trouble shoot electrical problems (corrosion caused by sea-salt had jammed an electrical switch open) and go through a complete sheet and mechanical check. There is a boat to our port quarter. We…

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July 21st, 20:00 pst

Getting ready to take a batch of sites at Twilight. Jupiter, Venus and Polaris tonight. I like Polaris because you get your latitude right away and it’s a great way to cross-check everything. Our Navigator extraordinaire, Stockey who lives in Cowes, taught me a lot of simple and useful tricks that really make a big…

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July 21st, 18:00 utc

Bang. I mean big bang. I’m driving on deck; Richard is sleeping down bellow. The tip of the boom comes up violently. The vang pad-eye just exploded. I engage the pilot while watching carefully, trim in the main sheet and start looking for attachment points. Once I’m ready, I wake up Richard to see if…

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July 21st, 14:00 utc – lat 25 31 N, lon 137 48 W

In the last 24 hours despite being ‘swallowed’ by a net, and stuck a couple of times behind windless squally clouds, we still managed to sail 249 nautical miles, most of those in the direction of the Diamond Head Lighthouse. We are now sailing in solid 18 knot winds, gusting, our cog is 255 degrees,…

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