Oh, sure, we could take up sky-diving or marathon-running, but it seems like there's still plenty of derring to do in the sport we like best.
My favorite skipper had been talking about the WaterTribe's Everglades Challenge Race, for instance. The event is open to wind- and human-powered vessels and starts at Fort De Soto Beach in St. Petersburg, goes along the coast south, across the Everglades, and finishes in Key Largo.
330 miles of saltwater, gators, and storms. Oh my!
It's been on his radar for a while: he's followed the adventures and mishaps from over the shoulder of his designated computer users, weighing tactics and considering strategies. He got serious last year, when a boat-builder contacted him and offered him a sponsorship deal. The deal came to nothing, but the seed germinated.
“We need to get our tribe names,” he told me. Not following his train of thought, I responded with an elegant, “Huh?”
“The teams all have tribal names. People follow you based on your tribal name.”
“We need names.”
“How about Pink Pony and the Captain Winnebago?”
Long pause. Disapproving frown. "Maybe you should look at the tribe names."
I looked. There are some great names: Sailsalot, SaltyFrog, Dances with Sandy Bottom, Green Mountain Girl, Passaic Paddler.
So I considered a few of our favorite things.
Thus have we become TwoBeers and Bookworm.
Nearly as soon as we had decided on these handles, Captain TwoBeers started shaking the trees for support and suggestions. Calvin Reed, who is an extended in-law, generously donated his elderly Flying Scot, "Red Stripe."
We have boat-builder friends who can be relied upon to have lots of ideas. O.H. Rodgers (of Rodger 24 and Kiwi 35 etc. etc. fame) started doing calculations on paper napkins, estimating whether the old telephone-pole mast might stand up to the stress of supporting a hiking trapese. After all, the Flying Scot is built as of bricks, but the extra leverage of a muscular type -- or one us -- suspending our body weight out over the bounding main on a wire?
We’ll be testing that one pretty thoroughly.
And what if we added a carbon bowsprit? A shaped centerboard? Hiking racks?
But first: the Sawzall. Captain TwoBeers applied blade to fiberglass and FrankenScot emerged from a cloud of dust: 60+ lbs of deck and seat removed.
FrankensScot resembles an escaped bathtub minus the plumbing. Squint and dream, and FrankenScot might resemble the awful cousin of an Aussie 18.
Mua ha ha! Stage One is complete.
The linked documentary below chronicles 2013's stormy Everglades Challenge, compressing the 80+ competitors and week-long adventure into an hour and a half -- with a charming rhyming narrative that calls to mind vintage newsreels.
6/26/2013 10:32:36 am
Great blog...two beers and a bookworm to you! Loved the you tube video.
6/26/2013 01:21:00 pm
6/26/2013 02:56:30 pm
TwoBeers and Bookworm, I like it. I've been following this race some years now as the Coresounders from B & B are NC boats. I think ya'll have a great idea for a boat. I'm guessing it's going to take more than 2 beers to make this boat go. Is Frankinscot the name?
6/27/2013 03:03:22 pm
7/23/2013 05:00:40 am
can't wait to see this develop. Did the EC last year in a Nomad. Love they way you work!
7/23/2013 10:34:06 am
Thanks Will -- I'm looking forward to seeing how it develops too! I'm hoping for test runs as soon as August...
7/23/2013 11:00:53 am
yes we did. 4d,10hr, 18 min. First attempt. Our tribe names are ZeroTheHero and my wife is GreenMountainGal (she loved your post!) Course it was a downwind sleigh ride 90% of the race. A sloop has never won class 4. Will this be the year? By the way we (my wife and I) are Eckerd grads. Class of '96. Kirsten S. was at the start cheering us and Sean Hawes (SeaDogRocket) was in class 1 or 2. He is likely to be back in '14 with another EC grad, BermudaBoy, both attempting on sailboards. I sailed at Eckerd with Kirsten as my coach from 1992-1996
7/23/2013 11:20:37 am
Congrats on finishing! Marathon. Glad GreenMountainGal liked the shout-out.
7/23/2013 01:27:02 pm
Looks like a great project. The FS was on my short list of boats when I got ready for my first attempt in 2011. After the doing the UM solo in 2012 (tough) I'm heading back to the beach in 2014 with a crew. I'm slowly learning... I'll be following your project with great interest and look very much forward to meeting you next year.
7/23/2013 03:11:23 pm
Gary "Luke" Lukoski
7/24/2013 04:56:54 am
Amy and Jeff. You're in for an adventure. I (Excitable Boy) and Bill Wright (Runs With Beer) entered my Sea Pearl in last year's EC. This is not like any other sailboat race we ever did or even imagined. When you find yourself rowing into Choko against 3 knots of current in the middle of the night and it 42 degrees, you know you're in a different sort of event. We'll also be in Class 4 again this year (I can hear Joy laughing in the background) but with a different boat. We got a little concerned about not having a self bailing boat last year when the waves got to 10 feet in the middle of the second night out. Good luck and looking forward to seeing how your preparations and boat mods work out. We'll see you on the beach in March.
7/24/2013 05:12:03 am
Hey Luke --
7/24/2013 11:41:48 am
Correction: if not "self-bailing" at least we want water to be able tol run out while the boat is moving with the modification of a bailer...
justanothersailor aka Guy deBoer
7/24/2013 06:32:32 am
Welcome to the tribe! I grew up sailing Fishboats and then Scot's out of NOYC, my question is what could you cut out of the deck and save 60+ lbs?
7/24/2013 08:00:52 am
Hey Guy, JustAnotherSailor-
7/24/2013 09:28:58 am
Just before I heard about you wanting to enter the event, I sent a email to a jr sailing friend Donny Brennan to see if he had an interest in sailing a Scot in the EC with me. Funny he never responded... I wonder why HA!
Leave a Reply.
About the Blog
A lot of ground gets covered on this blog -- from sailboat racing to book suggestions to plain old piffle.
Trying to keep track? Follow me on Facebook or Twitter or if you use an aggregator, click the RSS option below.
Old school? Sign up for the newsletter and I'll shoot you a short e-mail when there's something new.