Gail Bowdish - Sail Magazine

Gail Bowdish

Crew, Joy For All, Farr 502009 was my fifth Caribbean 1500, and the second crewing on Joy For All. It was a clean start, with enough wind to sail and we quickly settled into our watch rotation. My watches were 12:00 to 3:00, so I took the first watch. On Joy For All, the “on watch” crew is responsible for sail trim, watching for other boats,
Author:
Publish date:
Bowdish_200x

Crew, Joy For All, Farr 50

2009 was my fifth Caribbean 1500, and the second crewing on Joy For All. It was a clean start, with enough wind to sail and we quickly settled into our watch rotation. My watches were 12:00 to 3:00, so I took the first watch. On Joy For All, the “on watch” crew is responsible for sail trim, watching for other boats, keeping us on course and watching for weather. David followed me on watch and after he excused me, he invariably started tweaking the sails to look for an extra tenth of a knot of boat speed. Of course, I did the same thing when I came on watch after Gil. You put four sailors on a boat and you'll have four different opinions about how to trim the sails.

We couldn't have asked for better weather. Our Gulf Stream crossing was rather benign. We had reached the edge of the stream by 0200 the first night, and I slept through most of it. We had occasional squalls during the last half of our passage, but never saw more than 35 knots of wind, unlike some of the slower boats behind us. Two days out from Tortola, our mainsail furler broke, so we were unable to reef the main. It happened at night, but it didn't slow us down. Our daily mileage ranged from 168 to 205 miles, giving Joy For All her fastest passage yet, covering 1300 miles in six days, nineteen hours, and 17 minutes.

People have asked me why I keep doing the rally, and why boats like Joy For All keep coming back year after year. For me, it's the people, the camaraderie, the social events, seeing that pink flag while cruising down-island and knowing that you share a passion for sailing and have accomplished something that only a small percentage of people on the planet have done. I'm proud to be a rally veteran, and after such an enjoyable passage as this one, I'll definitely keep coming back as long as I can find a boat to crew on.

Related

SouthernOcean

The 50th Anniversary of the Golden Globe

Here we go! The 50th anniversary of the Golden Globe, the first singlehanded nonstop round-the-world race, is upon us. On July 1 one tribute event, the Golden Globe Race 2018, will start out of Les Sables d’Olonne, France, with a fleet of 19 amateur skippers setting out in ...read more

180621-X01-Landing-Page

Volvo Ocean Race Cliffhanger

After racing over 44,000 miles round the world and battling their way past the world’s great capes, including the Cape of Good Hope and Cape Horn, it’s all come down to the final 700-mile leg from Gothenburg, Sweden, to the Hague. Brunel, Mapfre, Dongfeng: going into the ...read more

Stearns Photo

Racing the Solo Mac for a Cause

There are plenty of reasons to do a Chicago-Mac race, and Rich Stearns, who has done literally dozens of ‘em should know. This year, though, he’s doing the Solo-Mac for an especially important reason: to help those with prostate cancer.“Two years ago, I was diagnosed with ...read more

TOTW_PromoSite

SAIL's Tip of the Week

Presented by Vetus-Maxwell.Got a tip? Send it to sailmail@sailmagazine.comRafting dangerOne unseen danger when sailing yachts lie alongside one another for a convivial night is that if they happen roll to a wash or begin to move in an unexpected sea, the spreaders can clash ...read more

180615-01 Lead

A Dramatic Comeback in the Volvo

After winning three of the last four legs in the Volvo Ocean Race (and coming in second in the fourth), Dutch-flagged Brunel is now tied for first overall with Spanish-flagged Mapfre and Chinese-flagged Dongfeng following the completion of Leg 10 from Cardiff, Wales, to ...read more

MFS-5-2018-Propan-SP02

Tohatsu LPG-powered 5hp Propane Motor

Gassing it UpTired of ethanol-induced fuel issues? Say goodbye to gasoline. Japanese outboard maker Tohatsu has introduced an LPG-powered 5hp kicker that hooks up to a propane tank for hours of stress-free running. Available in short-, long- or ultra-long-shaft versions, the ...read more