VOLVO OCEAN RACE Leg 10 Start Thursday 8AM

Hey Gang-

The Last leg of the Volvo Ocean Race begins Thursday the 20th at 8AM EST (That’s 12UTC for all you worldly types).

This ought to be good- it’s a 700 mile “sprint” and out of the three top boats it’s down to winner-take-all. MAPFRE and BRUNEL each have equal points. DONGFENG is one point behind.

MAPFRE has Blair Tuke in the crew, if they win he will become the first sailor to ever win an Olympic Gold medal, an America’s Cup, and a Volvo Ocean Race. Would be cool to see a crew get a little fame and recognition, it’s often such a thankless job….

On the other hand BRUNEL has Peter Burling in the crew, he could also be the first to win this “triple crown” (he and Tuke won the Olympics and America’s Cup together). Also onboard is skipper Bouwe Bekking, a Dutchie who has done this race nine times (!) or something and has yet to win it. His history in this race is unreal- it includes one sunk boat, one very high speed grounding and God knows how many other misadventures and near-misses.

Oh, and his navigator Andrew Cape was arrested in a drunken bar brawl in Newport when the race stopped here. Apparently he wasn’t taken in at the scene but was apprehended when he went to the police station a few hours later to bail out his friends and one of the officers recognized him. Uh, okay….

Would be good to see Bekking finally take a victory, especially as the race finishes in his home country of The Netherlands. Or Holland. Whatever it’s called, there are lots of windmills and it is a hotbed of and (some say) the birthplace of ice yachting. Rumor has it that Bekking has sailed on a bit of hard water over the years too…

And Cape Cod’s Rick Bishop has his DN painted just like the BRUNEL boat. So there you go.

Anyway tune in Thursday morning at 8AM and see them get under way. Should be good!


Hey Gang- If you’re awake and near a device be sure to catch the Volvo Ocean Race In-Port Race being broadcast live from Gothenburg, Sweden at 8:00 AM today (Sunday June 17).

Looks like they have plenty of breeze and every point counts so tune in and watch the action. Being in Sweden you may just spot an iceboater or two in the crowd…

Click this link and enjoy!

Peter McGowan Remembers His First Time

Good article by rookie DNer Peter McGowan here- have a read and get pysched for fall!

First Time Experiences of Iceboat Racing

First Time Experiences of Iceboat Racing

Peter Mcgowan heads to the DN North Americans in Charlevoix, Michigan

James “T” Thieler

12 Channing St.

Newport, RI 02840

401 258 6230


Volvo Ocean Race Leg Start Today

Hello Again Folks-

The Volvo Ocean Race kicks off again today, this time it’s the offshore leg from Cardiff, England to Gothenburg, Sweden. The top three boats are still within a point or two of each other with only two legs left in the race so things could get interesting….

The start is at 11AM EST on the Volvo Ocean website at As usual they will do a few laps around the buoys before they head out of the harbor.

Should be some interesting moments and at the very least it’ll be a great way to kill an hour as we wait for winter to hurry up and get here…

Happy Viewing and Think Ice!

Volvo Ocean Race- In-Port Race This Morning

Hello All- If you have a free hour this morning (or to watch a replay later) be sure to tune into the Volvo Ocean Race In-Port Race in Cardiff, England.

Looks like they have breeze and the In-Port races aren’t just a dog and pony show- in the event that there is a tie between two boats for the ocean legs the In-Port results will be used to break it.

And wouldn’t you know it may just come down to that- the top three boats are all practically tied with DONFENG holding 60, MAPFRE with 59, and Brunel with 57. So all the ingredients are there for a close, well fought race! Where is Howard Cosell when you need him most?!?

There is an NEIYA connection to the race as the skipper of VESTAS is from RI and was once housemates with our own Oliver Moore.

The race starts at 1300 UTC this morning (Friday the 9th) which (I think) is 0900 here on the east coast.

Usually there is a link to the action on the website here:
Replays are usually up in YouTube within a few hours if you are employed or something and can’t watch live.

Enjoy the action and THINK ICE!!

Sailing May 1 ???

Anyone up for a road trip? The crew waaaaaayyyyy out west says there is a 50/50 shot they will sail on Lake Minnetonka this weekend…. I asked for photos to confirm if they do it!

Good luck gang, sail safe and send pictures for all us jealous types-


She’s Sung…..

Great report here from Bill Bucholz on what is likely the last day of the year on Moosehead. That said, the way the Maine group is they will be squeezing ice days out of this season in June. See the story on the day and the season here

Thanks to Bill and the other Incurables up there! T

billbuchholz posted: “No one has accused the CIBC of not pushing conditions right to the limit. We’ve had some fabulous sails over the years on super marginal conditions. But today the limit pushed back. The plate took a hit from the sun yesterday and we didn’t get the cold we”

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She’s Sung

by billbuchholz

No one has accused the CIBC of not pushing conditions right to the limit. We’ve had some fabulous sails over the years on super marginal conditions. But today the limit pushed back. The plate took a hit from the sun yesterday and we didn’t get the cold we needed last night to firm it up. Fortier, Gagnon and myself plowed upwind through deep slush hoping to find some better ice. A few miles north of the pits, approaching Sugar Island, shades of grey did appear. In these hard spots the boat would accelerate, letting us head up higher until the slush hit again and we’d have to bear off a bit to maintain speed. A great game.

One of the hard spots. As long as you tacked on these you’d carry speed through the tack. It never would have happened without the 12-15kt. breeze.

I really need to apologize to Rick Bishop and his gang for failing to mention the importance of slush runners at this time of year. The plate was hard when checked yesterday morning, but things change quickly when it’s almost to May. They made the drive up from Cape Cod yesterday, got the boats nearly set up this morning when it became obvious their plates would work, and they probably made it home for dinner. Slush runners and storm sails are two of the most overlooked and forgotten bits of equipment that can usually mean the difference between sailing and going home. Call Steve Duhamel: buy the nicely shaped stainless angles. Make slush runners. Sailing slush is fun!

The run back down was more water sailing than ice. The boat would get airborne out off one slush pit and make a very soft landing in the next, feeling like soft water waves in a motorboat. There were a couple of very deep ones, but as long as the boat was going fast she’d pull right out in a fountain of ice balls. Dave Fortier, of all people, was caught going too slow and was swallowed up to the fuselage in one of them. Jim and I took a deep breath and actually sailed back out into the stuff to help him.

No regrets today, we had over two hours of very dramatic sailing, but this is SO what done looks like. There was no chance for tomorrow. Doug Raymond and Bryce showed up, but the Cheapskates’s runners finally net their match, and Doug was in a cautious mood. One of the guys from Mass was running a drone as we came blasting downwind and I hope he got some footage. I’ve never seen a slush sailing video, and today would easily qualify as the most extreme ever. As Lloyd always said, there’s no shame in pushing your boat nearly to the point of destruction on the last day of the season. I wonder if he feels that way even though it was with his old boat today!

It’s been a challenging winter, as we all know, and a long one. Our first sail was November 17, and today is April 21: six months of watching the forecast for countess lakes, calling spies and scanning web cams. We didn’t get in quite a few regattas, and even the mighty ISA didn’t happen. Well, not yet anyway. They are big on postponement; is has been postponed until November. Which is a great way to approach the off season: a mere six month postponement. So sharpen and oil the runners, take the sail to the sail maker and endure his abuse for for bringing him iceboat sails in May. They’ll never understand. Most importantly, it’s the start of the iceboat building season. Start now. Be ready. It’s only a short postponement.

billbuchholz | April 21, 2018 at 7:43 pm | Categories: 2018 Season | URL:

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