Dear Friend of CHARIAD:
This weekend, Joe Harris will leave Newport, RI, on his 40 foot mono hull sailboat, solo Gryphon, and attempt to break the single handed record for sailing around the world without stopping.
This past Saturday five CHARIAD community folks went to Newport for a reception on the dock of the Newport Ship Yard to tour the boat and wish Joe God Speed as he undertakes this huge adventure.
Joe Harris has been a Friend of CHARIAD for a number of years and I have followed his racing over several boats. Both Gryphon and CHARIAD were at the Block Island Race Week this summer and we sailed by each other to extend greetings. When I met Joe on the dock this past Saturday I asked him if he thought we had actually met – person to person – before. We agreed that we had not met before.
After touring the boat, we had a very interesting review of the wind patterns around the globe and learned how the weather forecasting service will guide Joe as he sails from one weather system to another trying to stay in 20 – 30 knot winds and stay away from icebergs. If you look at the globe from the South Pole – Antarctica – you realize that all of these round the world races are actually races from our latitude to Antarctica, around Antarctica, and back here. That is the race. The closer you go to Antarctica, the shorter the course but you have a higher probability of hitting an iceberg.
The plan is to start the race where the wind will get Gryphon East of Newport as quickly as possible. Joe expects to leave on Saturday or Sunday. You will be able to check in on his progress.
1. Go to YB Tracker to follow the boat around the world live. Go to this link: http://yb.tl/gryphonsolo2 You can also click on the weather icon and the wind direction and strength should come up on the screen;
2. Blake Jackson from Headway Consulting and Technology will be launching an updated GS2 web site shortly so check that out at www.gryphonsolo2.com
I believe the current record for the circumnavigation is 138 days. To beat the record, Joe has to sail by himself for 138 days, less a couple, through storms, icebergs, shipping traffic, whales, mostly submerged shipping containers while sleeping no more than one hour at a time and also finding the fastest sailing route around the world.
I did get to the gym this morning, I had two meetings, I did get some calls in and reviewed some documents – a good full day. But my day was light duty compared with every day that Joe will be at sea.
Today is Veteran’s Day. My thoughts and prayers go to the wonderful men and woman who serve us in the military all over the world and to those who have served us and are now at home – including my son Steven who served in the Navy on a nuclear sub.
My best wishes to each of you.