View Full Version : Sailonline's Record Gold Run - NYC-SFO - PPRuNe Flotilla

1st Mar 2013, 11:13
AHOY SOLers on PPRuNe ....

Following relatively hard on the finishing of SOL's Global Challenge 2012/2013 is another epic race ... an attempt by SOLers to beat the current record from New York to San Francisco (47days 0hrs 42mins) made earlier this month by Giovanni Soldini and his yacht Maserati.

All info for that record run is here (http://maserati.soldini.it/?lang=en)

SOL's race will start next Tuesday, 5 March @ 1900utc.

Any PPRuNers who sail on Sailonline and wish to form a PPRuNe Flotille (boatnames are prefixed with PRU_ ) please form an orderly queue. Actually, forget queuing and just post your SOL boatname in this thread and I will take care of the boat name change.

Please note that changing the name of your boat for a race doesn't change your normal SOL login credentials.

PPRuNe Name---------SOL Boatname

aspinwing--------------Quetzal boatname not registered
brockenspectre --------RainbowChaser
chksix -----------------chksix
ErwinSchroedinger-------sailing anonymously
Low Flier---------------LowFlier

N.B. I will be including myself in PPRuNe rankings but won't change my name - as SOL Admin its less confusing for me to stay as RainbowChaser.


1st Mar 2013, 12:23
flugholm ------ flugholm.
I'll be away from the keyboard for a couple of days during the race, due to some well-earned vacation. This should make my performance even worse. Or maybe not.

DC Meatloaf
1st Mar 2013, 13:44

DC Meatloaf ------ DCMeatloaf

1st Mar 2013, 17:31
aspinwing = Quetzal


2nd Mar 2013, 11:14
I've registered.
Lot's going on so I might get lost from time to time!

Reflex ------- Reflex

Lon More
2nd Mar 2013, 11:25
Registered but getting an error when I try to go to the race page

Flex Error #1001: Digest mismatch with RSL http://www.sailonline.org/static/windy/framework_3.5.0.12683.swf. Redeploy the matching RSL or relink your application with the matching library.

2nd Mar 2013, 12:01
LonMore - there is a useful thread on Sailonline about this here (http://www.sailonline.org/board/thread/8197/rsl-error-when-loading-latest-client-p/?page=11) , but to save you wading through all of it for the nuggets of good gen, may I recommend you (a) delete ALL cookies from your puter and then (b) read the last post in the thread. If the last post in the thread is still unclear, just holler again!


2nd Mar 2013, 12:09
aspinwing / Quetzal - I can't find a sol boat with either of these names registered!!

Or are you just planning on doing so at this point??!! :-D

Sailonline's races almost always incorporate a pre-race practice phase where you can test out the new boat, practise the course etc etc. The NYC-SFO race is now in this phase so you can register now (SOL is free to play, btw) and get to understand the relative complexity of the user interface/client.

There is a comprehensive SOL Manual (http://www.sailonline.org/static/var/sphene/sphwiki/attachment/2012/08/02/sailonline_BETA_manual_AUG2012.pdf) as well as some quick help (findable by clicking on the blue questionmark tab on a race screen).

Sing out if you need any help!

Lon More
2nd Mar 2013, 15:08
Thanks Brockie; now in using Classic. I got a bit confused with the Thread. I think a number of posts were made after your reply.

2nd Mar 2013, 16:54
LonMore - and if you now swap out the ?version=classic in the race url for ?beta=true you will find yourself in the new client.

There seems to be some hiccup when new versions of Win or Flash appear that demand SOLers clear cookies, clear Flash cache etc.

Hopefully one day SOL will have another super-duper volunteer coder as AGage was but, until then, we just have to find workrounds for some things.

Obviously, ultimately, I think the client will have to be re-written in hmtl5 as from all comments in race chat it is the client-language of the future.

For now... happy SOLing!


3rd Mar 2013, 03:57
Huh? What is this???

3rd Mar 2013, 07:35
Virtual yacht racing. :)
There are a dozen of us or thereabouts who have got a fleet together, thanks to Brockie who is one of the kind souls who organises/runs the races.
Great fun but very addictive, and it's free unless you want to join for a small amount and then you are included in a rolling league which counts your best 10 races.
The next race starts on Tuesday the 5th March and it's quite a long one, New York to San Francisco. Why not join in? You can have a little play getting used to the controls and practice ahead of the start.There are full instructions. The more the merrier.

Sailonline.org - Online Sailing (http://www.sailonline.org/)

3rd Mar 2013, 09:13
fliegenmong ... AND... Sailonline.org (aka SOL) is also running a series of races around the entire coast of Australia AND the next race in that coastal series will be starting from Hamilton Island on 22 March.

There is an on-the-run Racing Calendar (http://www.sailonline.org/board/thread/7450/current-race-calendar/?page=1)which is updated every couple of weeks approx. so you can see what is coming up.


Erwin Schroedinger
3rd Mar 2013, 12:41
I took the plunge and am apparently all at sea on a practice run.

....me hearties.

3rd Mar 2013, 15:09
Erwin Schroedinger - and the name of your wessel is?

Die Katze perchance?



3rd Mar 2013, 15:18
Or maybe Hamlet ?

Erwin Schroedinger
3rd Mar 2013, 17:27
Erwin Schroedinger - and the name of your wessel is?

I'd rather sail anonymously, in case my first ever excursion from landlubberiness develops into an embarassing disaster. :\

If all goes swimmingly (?) however, I might wish to pursue childhood ambitions to be a pirate, ahaaaaar...oi be a thinkin. :E


3rd Mar 2013, 17:34
In which case, may I suggest the following names for your vessel

R Jimlad

Army Hearties

or even

Clint (Mr Eastwood being famous for playing characters with no name)

Erwin Schroedinger
3rd Mar 2013, 17:39
Thanks for the suggestions. I've already chosen an innocent sounding name. Lull the enemy into a false sense of security and all that! :E

Question, please. The instructions are confusing re turning points.

When we get to Recife, do we just turn right...sorry, to starboard approximately 90 degrees, or do we have to perform a full 360 degree orbit round the turning point before heading off for the Horn?

...and when it says 'leave turning points on the right', does that mean that they are on our starboard side as we sail off on the next leg, or we are on the right of the turning point?

Thanks if you can advise. :ok:

PS - My boat is still afloat on my practice run, tracking along the line!!! I'm amazed! :ooh:

3rd Mar 2013, 17:49
Leave the point to your right/starboard, Edwin, trusting that your observation of the point changes it not ... :E

SMT Member
3rd Mar 2013, 18:38
SMT Member-----------------VikingAhoy

6th Mar 2013, 16:45
Erwin Schroedinger - as you will soon find out, from browsing the names beginning with PRU_ and mine, few of us are remarkable sailors/SOLers and the idea of the PPRuNe flotilla is simply one of cameraderie. Hopefully you will be happy to share your SOL boatname with us ere long!

Quetzal/aspinwing - have you had second thoughts?

There are just over 18hrs to race start.. some of us will have made good plans, others of us know to go south, turn right and go north.

Fair winds and good racing to everyone! :ok:

P.S. Its never too late to join in, so if there are other PPRuNers racing who would like to join in, just say so in this thread!

7th Mar 2013, 11:41
Fair winds everyone!

Looks like a frisky start ... which RainbowChaser nearly missed as she was setting up a practice race in California.. this morning just flew by!

I will try and do a weekly update but as ever, the best laid schemes gang aft agley, so no guarantees!!


Anyone else wanting to join up the PPruNe Flotilla just post your boatname here and I will made the prefix change as soon as I spot it!

7th Mar 2013, 11:44
Cheers Brockie :ok:

I think this is the fastestI've experienced, currently sailing at 26.65 Kts and accelerating.:)

7th Mar 2013, 12:44
Well 1st DC failed while I was in the Supermarket ! back on course now.

DC Meatloaf
7th Mar 2013, 12:53
Argh. For some reason, I thought the start was at noon local time. At least I'll have clear air, right? Sigh. :ugh:

7th Mar 2013, 13:16
Out of curiosity what happens when the wind is higher that the limits of the polar diagram ?
Is the ultimate velocity limited or do we just project the TWA and go faster.
This is me knowing that in the real world the boat would break :)

7th Mar 2013, 13:37
I've just asked the very same question in house on the 'chat'. I get the impression that the algorithms used to work out theoretical boat speed top out at 30 Kts wind speed. My boat speed hasn't altered so I'm assuming I'm at max. speed of 26.92 Kts. In real life the boat would be struggling, but I'm assuming would go faster by surfing down waves, some of the speeds in the round the world races have been around the 40 Kts mark in short bursts in the Southern Ocean.

7th Mar 2013, 13:49
There comes a point when it is more sensible to stop racing. As the Ocean Racing rules state, it is the skipper's responsibility to decide when to stop racing, and when to start again.
In the North Sea Race one year in a 34 footer, our skipper (who had skippered a maxi in the Southern Ocean) stopped racing and we hove to for about 6 hours in 50kts+. We went on to win our class and come second overall, as our competitors who continued racing suffered enough fatigue and damage to mean we overtook them later. Two boats started breaking up, but were fortunately rescued by rig support vessels.

Lon More
7th Mar 2013, 13:51
Forgot all about it. Just started and already more than 100 behind me

Erwin Schroedinger
7th Mar 2013, 14:19
Need to tweak my VMG[hdg] spreadsheet to reflect these polars.


From the chatroom.

Does anyone use this, or understand it, please?

I was in the top 20 after the start. I thought 'This is a doddle'.

Gone distinctly pear-shaped since then. :\

7th Mar 2013, 14:23
Some SOL'ers use computers and other gizmos. I personally am a sail by the seat of my oilskins type as I think are the most of the PRUNE fleet. VMG is velocity made good. Polars is a referance to the 'Polar Chart' this gives you your boat speed depending on wind strength and direction, that's on the page you use to change course. Don't worry, very very early days yet. :)

7th Mar 2013, 15:38
Don't worry about rankings just yet. Better to look ahead at the upcoming weather by sliding the weather bar at the bottom and plan a course.

AFAIK we all race without using routers. It increases the challenge and fun IMO :ok:

Erwin Schroedinger
7th Mar 2013, 16:25

Looking ahead and advancing the weather to match, it all looks a bit calm in a few days.

Day after day, day after day,
We stuck, nor breath nor motion;
As idle as a pixelated ship
Upon a pixelated ocean.

Edited to pixelate pixellated.

7th Mar 2013, 16:39

Taken at about 20N, 40W. Let's hope none of us get stuck!

Low Flier
8th Mar 2013, 13:57
Low Flier ---------- LowFlier

Enjoyed a frivolous little excursion through Castle Harbour, Bermuda. VFR instead of blind IFR for 13,000 miles, just for the hell of it!

8th Mar 2013, 14:15
Ah, that was you!
Very cool:cool:

I've just noticed there is a route through the panama canal....

Erwin Schroedinger
8th Mar 2013, 14:25
OK, checked the manual and can't find a VFR/IFR option. :confused:

Can anyone help, please?

All I'll need then is a powerful desk fan and a cold salt water drip feed.

...or since I'm in the UK, just open a window. :}

8th Mar 2013, 17:50
LonMore, did you set TWA=0 on purpose? :sad:

Lon More
8th Mar 2013, 17:54
Who planted that :mad:ing island in the way?

8th Mar 2013, 17:58
I didn't see any island either...

8th Mar 2013, 18:01
Let's make that three of us ... :ugh:

8th Mar 2013, 19:12
ah... so we did find Bermuda then :E

In the Races Forum there was a bit of a heads-up (http://www.sailonline.org/board/thread/10193/new-york-to-san-francisco-record-attempt/?page=1#post-10251) hehehe

Erwin Schroedinger
9th Mar 2013, 08:15
Bermuda island isn't the biggest problem - its that :mad: triangle you've got to watch out for.

13th Mar 2013, 13:36
What a painful few days. I'm going to sulk big time if that area of low winds moves over me again. :rolleyes:

Lon More
13th Mar 2013, 13:47
That's my private area, Beaufort. I'm not sharing it!!

13th Mar 2013, 15:05
What a painful few days. I'm going to sulk big time if that area of low winds moves over me again.

Looks like things will improve for you over the next twelve hours though, unlike those at the other end of the ridge, who seem to be stuck with it. Slow going.

13th Mar 2013, 17:19
As we are a few days in and I am already doing my Dances with Windholes routine (well, guess we all are!) I thought it would be good to grab a ranking... while the going is good!!


and..... breathe! hehehe :ok:

13th Mar 2013, 17:32
Thanks Brockie

22nd Mar 2013, 08:51
Beaufort1 that run down the West side has turned out to be inspired, good going.

Erwin Schroedinger
23rd Mar 2013, 08:36
I'm currently tempted to park up three miles outside Montevideo harbour and scuttle the thing.

Problem is, I'd have to get there first. :}

Is it moi, or do the new wind forecasts do a 180 every now and then, thereby destroying all of one's magnificent planning? :ugh:

23rd Mar 2013, 08:40
Thanks Wodrick I'm not sure how we're all going to get to the next corner.As far as I can see it's going to be an uphill fight all the way now. :)

23rd Mar 2013, 08:43
Looks like it's going to be a barrel of laughs from where I am :ugh:

23rd Mar 2013, 08:52
Oof, I thought I had the monopoly on catching light winds, and I thought I was hard done by as I'm down to 15 Kts. You might be lucky and catch those N'ly winds further down the coast. Playing these systems is going to be interesting. :8

Lon More
23rd Mar 2013, 08:55
15 knots!!! We only dream of 15 knots.

Erwin Schroedinger
23rd Mar 2013, 08:56
Looks like it's going to be a barrel of laughs from where I am

I'll swap your barrel of laughs for a Super Maxi 100

...nearly new, certainly never raced!


23rd Mar 2013, 18:39
"what a difference some days make" <<singing offkey>>

I definitely feel I am being pursued by windholes ... I am their Goddess but just once in a while I do wish they would leave me in peace :ok:

Here are our current standings/sittings:


beaufort - you are excused the lack of puffin cam so long as you maintain your excellent position... upholding the erstwhile fine traditions of the PPRuNe Flotilla to do well!! and... if we don't do well, we still enjoy ourselves and a few tinctures and/or bbqs along the way :E

Herr Schroedinger - if at any stage you feel like revealing your SOL boat name, just do so - 'tis easy enough to add you to The Flotilla List :)

Erwin Schroedinger
25th Mar 2013, 06:54
I've decided to concentrate on marks for artistic interpretation. :}

Erwin Schroedinger
25th Mar 2013, 08:24
Does anyone know for certain if Falkland Sound (the distinctly soggy looking line, running SSW between East and West Falkland) is passable, please?

You cannot not go through there, if its do-able. :cool:

Edited to make 'distincltly' more distinct.


25th Mar 2013, 08:38
Yes, loads of room. Grey funnel line had no problem going through there in 82'. ;) What's your boat name?? :)

Erwin Schroedinger
25th Mar 2013, 08:49
Ta! :ok:

'Ge-e-e-e-e-ronimo' it is then! :}

I'm keeping my boat name quiet until I get my sea legs and in case I branch out into piracy. My 'snail track' in this race makes me glad I did...an oi aint even been swiggin the ships rum. :rolleyes:

Lon More
25th Mar 2013, 09:41
For added enjoyment display the Argie flag when sailing between the islands and reply to any radio calls in a "Manuel" accent
Regards to your cat

25th Mar 2013, 10:05
Here's hoping I can go down Falkland Sound as fast as I did for real...which would be about 500 kts.;)

25th Mar 2013, 10:16
Regards to your cat:D.:D.....................

Low Flier
25th Mar 2013, 10:41
The weatherpixies keep putting the 1 knot isotach right in front of my boat and its 6 hour predictor line.


Lon More
25th Mar 2013, 12:51
Fox 3 you flew a Skyhawk?

26th Mar 2013, 08:52
I'm sure the Falklands keep moving. They are in the way.:suspect:

Erwin Schroedinger
26th Mar 2013, 09:15
Looking good to reach the Falklands, although some juicy red arrows nearly tempted me to stray from my mission.

I can't find a single straight line through Falkland sound, although one line is very close. Is any overlap with the land mass possible, without scraping to a halt?

I'm just thinking ahead, in case I'm at the Sound entrance at some ungodly hour of the night.

I see a couple of boats have already taken the planned attack route and no doubt alerted the Falklandisatni population. I'm expecting heavy flak. One direct hit and there'd be no doubt about whether the cat is dead or not.

26th Mar 2013, 09:23
Very very small islands you can sail over, but it is a gamble whether you can get away with it or not, I tend to stay clear.:)

26th Mar 2013, 11:43
Lon More

1435 Flight Falkland Islands - YouTube

26th Mar 2013, 16:05
Looking ahead a couple of days the weather is going to get interesting as we round the Horn. :ooh:

26th Mar 2013, 16:25
A couple of days for who ?:*

Erwin Schroedinger
27th Mar 2013, 06:31
Antarctica here I come. :{


28th Mar 2013, 16:25
Well round the Horn and onward Capn' B :D

Is your current course a cunning ploy, I can only see you and one other trying it.

28th Mar 2013, 16:35
I just want to claw to windward, should give me more options when the winds free me later tomorrow.:8

Lon More
30th Mar 2013, 10:46
as if falling overboard for a coupel of days wasn't enough, I've now found a private wind hole.

31st Mar 2013, 08:30
Been a tricky 48 hours, but back up to 21 Kts.:)

2nd Apr 2013, 08:03
Went aground by 50cm overnight - rats, no bar there either.

2nd Apr 2013, 15:06
This hot air balloon race starting in a few hours time looks interesting looking at the solar chart. :8

7th Apr 2013, 09:57
'tis about time for an update as we leave Cape Horn behind and move into the Pacific. For some of us the way ahead seems easy but for others of us the blue stuff just keeps getting in the way (and for non-SOLing prooners reading this, we don't mean the sky, but the windholes which show up as blue on-screen!).

Here we all are: https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-GITCUBOrR_o/UWFBnMtI3YI/AAAAAAAACOg/D4mmCy614lM/s800/PPRuNeFlotilla07apr13.png

Many of my school reports oft contained the phrase "could do better" and... such is the state of my SOLing :ok:

To check out what we are talking about, just go to the Sailonlne.org website which is here: Sailonline (http://www.sailonline.org)

and using the guest login credentials on the homepage you can log in without registering and have a snoop!! :ok:

11th Apr 2013, 07:56
I'm having a fairly torrid time in these light winds. :\

Lon More
11th Apr 2013, 08:25
I'm having a fairly torrid time in these light winds.
Making 19kts now but fancy swapping places

What's happened to Flugholm?

Erwin Schroedinger
11th Apr 2013, 08:48
The balloon race is a hoot.

I've been tempted to join the Kamikaze squadron on occasion, though. In the words of the 10th Duke of Chalfont:

I fired an arrow in the air, she fell to earth in Barclay Square!

Unfortunately, Samuel Taylor Coleridge then scuppers my plan:

Arrows, arrows, everywhere and not a one to shoot.


11th Apr 2013, 08:49

Looks like the crew have nipped into Valdiva for a swift half.

12th Apr 2013, 14:27
Wish I'd gone and joined them. This is hard work.:hmm:

Erwin Schroedinger
13th Apr 2013, 07:03
My balloon crossed the finish line as I slept.

Twas good fun, in a masochistic sort of way, looking back. Definitely lots of lessons for the next one, if there is a next one. Huge element of weather luck, though.


(1) - Round the world. Greenwich to Greenwich, starting and ending along the Thames.

(2) - Air-to-air missile capability.


Erwin Schroedinger
17th Apr 2013, 05:48
Feels soooooooo good to be out of the Doldrums. :D

Very noticeable that 10 of the first 12 finishers followed almost the same routes, as far back as their snail traces go.

I guess that's down to using software aids(?)

How does one find such software? (notwithstanding that I can't for the life of me see the 'fun' in using it). :confused:


Lon More
17th Apr 2013, 07:39
Becalmed, drifting along at 3kt. Just looked at the forecasts. Looks like I'm stuffed for the next week. Heading South looks like an option

17th Apr 2013, 20:22
Erwin, the ad below the map screen takes you to one of the routers. I haven't used it but I've peaked into the support forums a bit. The router will not be easy to use at first and it has a steep learning curve.
Needs to be updated at each weather update too.

23rd Apr 2013, 13:38
Happy St George's Day chaps!! For this already in port for whom this race is now history I say "Bravo and well done"!... for the rest of us at varying points along this course I say "Courage"!!

Can't believe I am still stuck in the blue gloop. This race was meant to be done and dusted by now but its really not possible to close it until a decent % of those who start (or at least those who are still racing) manage to make it across the line.

Meanwhile, here are our current standings:



SMT Member
23rd Apr 2013, 20:38
Well chuffed with 126th and 3rd in the Prune flotilla. Been a long hard one this.

Erwin Schroedinger
25th Apr 2013, 07:35
Well, timbers duly shivered, HMS seabiscuit staggered home 148th.

...although why is there no boat at position 147? Did he sink?

Many thanks to the Sailonline team and to brockenspectre for leading me there. :ok:

Hard work, great fun and might be better next time if I can become more confident with the polar diagram thingy. Still can't get my head around the on-site explanation.

Thanks for the info chksix. Must investigate...:ok:

Lon More
29th Apr 2013, 19:22
Has the race finished? Just getting a blank screen.

29th Apr 2013, 19:31
Yes earlier today

Erwin Schroedinger
29th Apr 2013, 19:33
I thought the screen was always supposed to be blank.

That could explain a lot. :{

29th Apr 2013, 23:23
Well a mighty race was fought ... kept open for an extra 24hrs to help a few to the satisfaction of crossing the finish line. There is something so thwarting about not getting to the line... its happened to me a few times and even though I know my rank is my rank, somehow it just doesn't feel the same if I haven't reached the line.

The longest race run on SOL so far - the map-size was probably at the very limit of many a download (not everyone has high-speed broadband, and even those of us who do, oftentimes find it less than high-speed!).

Bravo and congratulations to all who took part. As a group I think our wee Flotilla did pretty darn well overall and we should give ourselves a group pat-on-the-back!

In the pipeline is a race in tribute to the late Magnus Olsson who died the other day - his famous Qingdao to Rio leg of the VOR is on the cards, so perhaps we can reconvene for that one?

Meanwhile here are our final results:



30th Apr 2013, 16:45
Thanks for your efforts Brockie both here and on SOL. Thanks to the extension managed to finish, I thought I was going to end up in the blue bits forever.
I, for one, am always up for the long distance races, I really enjoy those, but the shorter ones, particularly on the other side of the world I find very testing, they always seem to go wrong while I am resting !

Lon More
30th Apr 2013, 18:45
Thanks again for all the effort Brockie.
Til the next one:ok:

30th Apr 2013, 20:22
Likewise, thanks Brockie :D

1st May 2013, 08:26
Thanks Brockie, I was lucky with the winds, managing to just about hang on to good speeds.