Monday, June 9, 2008

Cayard family getting ready for Pac Cup

Allie Cayard

[Source Cayard Sailing] May 31st and June 1st was our second practice weekend in preparation for the Pacific Cup. I feel as though most of us are becoming much more comfortable around each other. We are also all beginning to see what needs to be done when, and who is best at doing it.

The bowmen are Morgan and Robbie, while skippering has been a mix of me with light wind, my brother and my Dad in the heavier winds. Cameron does a lot of jib trimming and I did my fair share of main trimming. Mark Towill and Ralfie Steitz were not able to come out that weekend, so we had Eric Arndt and Jeff Thorpe in their places.

One of our main goals of this training session was to simulate a rudder failure and deploy our emergency steering system.ᅠFor safety reasons (and to pass the inspection) you must have an onboard steerage replacement, in case of rudder failure. A common method used is dragging a spin pole from the stern and attaching two lines to it, one to a port and one to a starboard winch. We then trim in the winch on the corresponding side and trim the sails accordingly.

I am still very excited about this experience even though it is proving to be a lot more work than we had initially planned (most of which is falling on my Dad).ᅠEric Arndt, Mark Cosby, Brad Fitzgerald and Brent Ruhne have been a great help with boat maintenance and are slowly taking things off our four page, over 100 item list of things to do before we go. Morgan and Cameron, who are on the crew, have also helped out tremendously with the boat and doing maintenance work.

I am in charge of packaging and buying the food, 227 pounds of it!ᅠ This is a big responsibility when you're talking about feeding seven large men. Helping me out in this project is Mark, because he did the food for Morning Light last year.

With this whole project comes a lot of stuff. I'm talking countless sails, ropes and boat parts my Dad has been taking off in order to get the weight down. For those of you who have sailed with him in any round the world race you know that anything that can come off will. All of this so called junk has been thrown into a storage locker where coincidently when you want to find something it's impossible. Last Monday, my Dad and I had the pleasure of organizing our locker for three hours and it looks amazing. It's times like this that my Dad and I will never forget.

Our next practice session is not until the second week of July as my Dad and a few of us will not be around. However, we know that the next session will be a three day adventure out into the open ocean and we hope to simulate much of the actual racing. We will be doing our four hour shifts and eating freeze dried meals. Many of us will also learn what it's like to be seasick and be freezing cold. - Allie

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