Transpac Race 2011 - Fast J Speedsters racing to Hawaii

J/125 DOUBLE TROUBLE sailed by Andy Costello- ready to uncork the monster A-sail to plane all the way to Diamond Head. - Transpac Race 2011
Phil Uhl
Transpac Race 2011 started on July 4th, only 2,225 nm from LA to Hawaii's Diamond Head, easily one of America's classic offshore races right? Hard to imagine why anyone wouldn't like it - a classic 'bucket list' race for anyone who loves offshore sailing.

This year's race seems relatively 'easy' (a classic perhaps), just head offshore for awhile beating off the LA coastline, find the right vector/tack to get away from the shadows of the Catalina and Channel Islands headed West, get yer nose into the increasingly strong WNW trade-wind flow as you get further offshore, then find the right track around the Pacific High, uncork the monster A-sails and go for it; sliding downhill at 10-20 knots for five to eight straight days (depending on size of boat)!

'J/130 BEBE sailed by Charles Browning from Santa Barabara YC- now leading the fleet to Hawaii - Transpac Race 2011
Phil Uhl

Going this year is the J/130 Bebe sailed by Charles Browning from Santa Barbara YC which started Monday sailing in Division 6. Currently the Bebe crew are sailing well, having escaped the light airs off the LA region, and are now flying across the Pacific in 10-15 knot winds looking for even more pressure, sailing a sustained 8-10 knots.

The J/145 BAD PAK sailed by Tom Holthus and crew surfing to finish line off Diamond Head - Transpac Race 2011
Phil Uhl

In Division four, starting on Friday July 8th, will be a past Transpac Champion, the J/145 Bad Pak sailed by Tom Holthus from San Diego YC and the beautifully refinished (in platinum silver) J/125 Double Trouble raced by Andy Costello from Corinthian YC in San Francisco. At this stage the forecast looks extremely positive for the Friday escape from the LA coastline - with good pressure building from the WNW near shore and even stronger Northerlies developing as the fleet takes off from between Catalina Island and the Channel Islands.

Follow their tracks and cheer them on (every boat can be blogged).

Transpac Race website