Duxship Race aboard Transit of Venus

Pushing 20kts boatspeed in flat water on the approach to the finish

Rick and Jared pushing 20kts boatspeed in flat water on the approach to the finish


Capt. Pablo in Transit's nav station

Capt. Pablo in Transit’s nav station

Transit of Venus is Rick Waltonsmith’s beautiful Corsair 37.  On this day we had the 2014 PacCup crew aboard for a 30 mile jaunt out to Dux Reef, the SF approach buoy, and home.  Just six hours on the course despite mostly mellow—and at times, becalmed—conditions.


Memorial Day Regatta


Seven Wetas sailed seven races over Memorial Day weekend in beautiful conditions at Alamitos Bay Yacht Club, Long Beach.

Pierpont Performance Sailing customers Dean and Dan had some moves on the fleet of regulars!

Read the recap and see the photos.

The Hardway Race

Orange rested at the Santa Barbara Yacht Club guest dock for the two days leading up to The Hardway Race. Its a lovely spot to lounge in the sun, people watch, and do boat projects while waiting for race day. On Friday evening our charter crew Caryl arrived in time for dinner at the yacht club and a couple beverages before turning in.

orange in SB

The maxi-reacher is rigged for a total of three headsails: small, medium, and huge.

Race morning dawned brilliantly sunny, with a light breeze out of the southeast—the exact direction we were to head. The forecast called for strong northwest wind, and the observations were already confirming that (26kts on Anacapa at 9am). This was a case of the hard wind outside “eddying” around the islands and folding back on itself. This can create areas where it is extremely light—lovely for morning coffee, but not very welcome at our start time of 11:25.

Approximately 25 boats started in these light conditions. A few were to head around Santa Cruz Island—the traditional Hardway route. A fair number were on the coast-wise course, and a handful of would be sailing the Anacapa route. Due to retirements, only two of us finished on that course!

anacapa island

West end of Anacapa as seen from the main salon of Orange

It took three hours to move away from the light stuff inshore and out to the synoptic breeze of the Santa Barbara Channel. When it filled, it filled big, and we were soon jib reaching at 15kts headed right to the island. By 4pm we were gliding through the Anacapa Passage and proceeding down the backside of the beautiful island. It was strange to be there by ourselves, with no other racers in sight.


On the last leg. Here you can see Anacapa on the left and part of Santa Cruz just to its right.

Before rounding Arch Rock at the east end of the island we nipped in one reef for what we knew would be a fast last leg. One nice sunset later and we were soon crossing the finish line at 10pm. Orange lives in front of the Pierpont Bay Yacht Club (the host of the Island Series) and it’s always a treat to be treated to treats upon arrival, no matter the hour. This evening it was homemade chili—and a Pierpont Ale, of course.

ORCA award

Caryl and Paul with our ORCA First in Class award

Newport to Ensenada Race

newport to ensenada crew

Molly and Seamus filled out Orange’s 2013 Newport to Ensenada crew.

Racing charter guests Molly and Seamus joined us for a great race. And the weather gods smiled on us all.


LoeReal, an ORMA-60 trimaran

One of the best things about the Newport to Ensenada is boat watching. The race attracts the biggest, fastest, and most expensive boats on the West Coast.

bad pak

BadPak and N2E regular Taxi Dancer

Aboard Orange, we go fast and have fun—without having to sit on the rail hunched over the lifelines like the crew on some of these big monohulls!


Orange cruising comfortably at 15 knots

Weta National Championships

weta nationals

2013 Weta National Championships in Florida

Despite limited experience in these boats, Paul decided to treat himself to an early Spring Break by participating in the first-ever Weta US Nationals, hosted by the Fort Walton Beach Yacht Club in Florida.

weta nationals

Participants in the 2013 Weta National Championships

Paul came out 8th (of 21 entrants) and a whole lot wiser about boat handling in high wind. The best part of the experience was spending quality time on and off the water with Weta designer Chris Kitchen who traveled from New Zealand to join the event.

Spring Dinghy Regatta

wetas weather mark

Wetas going for the weather mark. Photo by Rick Saez

Weta #738 Ginger took her first road trip. We drove up to the St. Francis Yacht Club in San Francisco and joined eight other Wetas for some racing in classic, high-wind San Francisco conditions.
Paul lost his virginity (pitchpoled), but since nobody caught it on camera, did it really happen?

planing weta

It’s a boat! It’s a plane! …It’s a boat on a plane! Photo by Rick Saez


Blasting toward the cityfront. Photo by Rick Saez

nailing the start

Nailing the start. Photo by Rick Saez

Plenty of other GREAT photos were taken by professional photog Rick Saez.

Couples Match Racing

couples match racing

Couples match racing

Dueling Wetas were seen all weekend long in Ventura Marina. Jared and E.G. came down from San Francisco to challenge Paul and Jenn over two glorious days of warm weather and light breeze.

November, with its gentle winds and crystal-clear skies, is often one of the best months for sailing the California Coast—or Mexico! It is an especially fine time to sail our Corsair 31 in the Sea of Cortez.

SoCal Ta-Ta

A week of skipping along the Southern California coast, hopping between harbors on the islands and the mainland. It’s all the fun of the Ha-Ha, but with less of a time commitment and you don’t need a passport. See Latitude 38’s event site for all the details.


The theme this year was Reggae ‘pon da Ocean, so in the spirit of the event, we changed the boat’s home port to Spliff, CA…wherever that is.

orange at rest

Where in the hell is Spliff, CA?

Overnights alternated between hopping vacation spots like Avalon, which full of party people for Beerfest, and the serene natural beauty of Santa Cruz Island.

santa cruz island

Reflecting on Santa Cruz Island

Avalon’s harbor is popular and has room for many boats, but the water remains stunningly clear. Johnny can see the bottom beneath him, 25 feet below.

avalon swimming

Crystal-clear water at Avalon

The lazy schedule allows plenty of time for recreation, whether it’s playing the Kraken with remote-control Lasers or trolling for fish.

kraken gets the laser

Watch out little sailboat!

fish on!

Fish on!

Kelp has a bad reputation as a troublesome water weed that wraps itself around the propellers and rudders of boats. Seeing it from the top of the mast gives another perspective.

kelp from the masthead

Kelp as seen from Orange’s masthead

Santa Barbara to King Harbor Race

All the fun of Newport to Ensenada without the need to race at night or bring a passport!

Another SoCal classic, this 90-mile spinnaker run begins with a pre-start party hosted by the always-pleasant people at the Santa Barbara Yacht Club. The finish, typically after sunset, is hosted by the King Harbor Yacht Club in Redondo Beach.