04 February 2008

The Sixth Crew

Sailing on Saturday was equal parts miserable and incredible. The weather was just nasty: cold and wet. The wind was very good for what we were doing though so off we went to test the sails.

On board was the sailmaker, noted America's Cup veteran Sylvain B. of UK-Halsey. It was really cool to sail with someone like that and see/hear what he was looking at, what he was tweaking and just generally talk about sailing. This is him:

This man was totally branded up like a NASCAR driver. Of particular note were his foulie bottoms (China Team from AC32) and fleece jacket (some Farr 40 team that employs him). I countered with West Marine house brand but at least mine matched.

On the way back in, we were discussing what we were looking for in a sixth crew member. He was oddly silent so I asked the obvious, "Sylvain, what are you doing in July?" He chuckled and said, "the next time I sail to Hawaii, I plan on doing it in 5 days."

That wasn't disrespect to our 13-14 day planned crossing but just a measure of the type of rides this guy gets. I don't want to spoil what big catamaran with a french name plans on sailing to Hawaii in February in ~5 days but when they are ready to take off, I'll be sure to publish it.

Anyway, we don't have a chance to get him for our slow ride to Hawaii but at least we'll have his sails.

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