Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: New York
Thanked 3 Times in 2 Posts
Rep Power: 9
I'm sure the boat is loaded with safety gear, as you point out, because the Bermuda race rules are quite stringent on that stuff. Plus, you seem to have a sense already as to the personal gear you ought to bring for yourself (foulies, seasickness meds, books, iPod, etc.). Here are a few questions to ask that may be a touch less obvious. And it's not that you should go or not go depending on the answers, but knowing the answers may help you know what to expect.
Fuel. The Farr 40 has something like 18 or 20 gallons of fuel. Ask if they're planning to load the decks with jerry jugs. On a return delivery like that many boats do so. It's not a huge deal one way or the other, but knowing the answer will make it a little easier to predict your arrival home. That may or may not be important to you.
Roller furling jib. Most of these boats have roller furling, but sometimes the owners remove the furlers for the race down. You may want to ask whether they've done that, and if so, are they planning to reinstall the furler in Bermuda for the delivery home.
CPB sticker. This allows the boat and crew to check in with customs upon re-entry into the US in an expedited manner (i.e., by phone). Without this, you all will need to go to a customs office physically at a port of entry. It's a simple matter to get the sticker, and if the owner hasn't done so yet, (s)he probably should.
I assume the owner/return skipper already has his/her plan for weather and Gulf Stream routing in place, but just in case, we use Dane and Jenifer Clark for weather (Dane) and Gulf Stream (Jenifer). I do recommend them. Another alternative is Commander's Weather. Again, this is probably beyond your responsibility and I assume it already will be taken care of, but it can't hurt to ask. Weather info is readily available these days frankly, but getting a good picture of the Gulf Stream and eddies right when you are ready to leave could be the difference between sailing in fair or foul current (which could cut or add as much as a day from the passage). Also, knowing where the stream and eddies are located is significant for weather too, as it will allow you to route yourself in a manner so as to avoid wind against these currents (I probably don't need to explain here the significance of sailing in winds opposing the Gulf Stream or its eddies). Whereas weather information is readily available on the Internet, Gulf Stream info is more difficult to extract. It's there, but it's just not as user friendly quite yet (which is good for Jenifer!).
And finally, if you've never been to Bermuda, show up a few days early to explore it a little. It's a fabulous place. Be sure to grab a beer and burger at the White Horse in St. George's. Likewise, if you get there at or shortly after the race boats arrive, you'll have a lot of fun just walking the docks at the RBYC checking out the maxis and the other competitors. Plus, it's a party atmosphere in Hamilton at that time, which always is fun just for the ambiance.
Maybe we'll see you there. Our fleet is going to start to arrive in St. George's on Wednesday/Thursday June 23/24. Good luck and have fun!
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