Debris-strewn Transpac

Between the Sheets had a close call with a 35-foot tree trunk

In addition to the usual hazards faced by offshore racers, competitors in this year’s Transpac Yacht Club’s LA-Honolulu Race found themselves dodging a surprising amount of debris as they navigated the 2,225-mile course.

The crew of the R/P45 Criminal Mischief, for example, reported sighting a 15-foot chunk of floating telephone pole, while the crew of the Jeanneau 52 Between the Sheets spotted a 35-foot tree trunk no more than 100 yards off the boat’s bow.

Worse yet were the cases of the Seastream 650 Mantea, which struck a 10-foot section of what the crew believed to be a telephone pole, and the line-honors winning ORMA 73 trimaran Lending Club, which suffered at least a half dozen “major impacts” that required some 10 hours to repair. 

Transpac YC officials said the debris is likely wreckage from the tsunami that hit Japan in 2011, now slowly making its way across the Pacific, and advised all competitors to keep a sharp lookout. For complete results, visit

Photo courtesy of Sharon Green/

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