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It’s posted:  www.sailinganarchy.com

I left Jesse and Conrad yesterday to get back to La Trinite.  Jesse seems very well sorted out for Transat and only used my help because I was there.  Conrad still has a few things to do, but is pretty well taken care of at this point.  Chris Tutmark and Craig Horsfield seem really sorted well, and didn’t require any help from me at all which shows they are well organized.  Most everyone is ready to go from what I could see. 

The Editor at SA said they’d be following me in the Mini Transat closely.  That should be easy to do since I can blog about it from land.  I guess he didn’t catch that I’m not going!  I hope that doesn’t throw a wrench in the works for SA.  I sent him an e-mail already. 

Strangely I don’t feel upset or anything about not doing this year’s race.  I’m excited for the guys who are going, but not jealous which surprises me.  I thought I was more petty than that.  I must be slipping.  I just feel relieved to have the hardest part of the mini over with.  That is the refit.  I’ve still got a small work list, but it’s nothing compared to the massive amount of work (for me) I put in over the past year.  Mostly I’m just feeling relieved to have gotten here, sailed in one race and made my sponsors happy with a good result.  Now the fun part starts and I am doing the budget for next season.  A budget which includes hotels with internet!   

Speaking of budgets, look at this:

DSCI0189

The massively modified and amazing Gitana 11, now 78 feet long preparing for the Route du Rhum in 2010.  One of Gitana’s problems being the 95′ Idec to port.  The other being the 100+ foot Sodebo about 100 yards away to starboard.  Consider this: the Route du Rhum is a solo race.  These are big boats for solo racing, and they are as fast as they are big.

As a sixty foot ORMA class trimaran, Gitana 11 sailed the 4,000 mile course in just over seven days under the spell-like control of Lionel Lemonchois.  It was a sublime accomplishment.  Historic and poetic. 

Sometimes these races are won by men behaving like machines, but Lionel’s record showed me solo racing can be more than that, and that’s why I’ve come to France.  On the mini it’s hard to get over the mechanics, because the boats are so small and are rarely, if ever fully in harmony with the sea.  The big multihulls are a much better medium to interact with the sea.  Their highs and lows are proportional and extreme, and to me it’s the purest and most honest way to go offshore. 

Until then, minis.

-R

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