Race Archives

2009 Honolulu

Transpac Memories of MJ

Los Angeles, CA (July 7, 2009) - Before the Division I and II boats pulled away from the dock on Sunday, many in the Aloha Send-off were busy collecting autographs. Some were trying to cover the Morning Light poster with cast and crew autographs. One fellow caught Paul Cayard and Stan Honey deep in conversation. Initially, he was after Cayard’s signature, but when he realized who the blond behind the white Alfa Romeo sunglasses was, he went for the famed navigator’s signature too. Honey scrolled his John Hancock right in the center of the man’s long-sleeved Transpac wicking shirt and immediately raised its value.

The autographs on the Transpac posters and shirts are nothing compared to those being scrolled on the Michael Jackson banners around Staples Center. The big boats may be picking their way through Transpac traffic, but it is nothing like Tuesday’s clogged LA freeways. However, while they sail the Pacific, some of the King of Pop’s music may come to mind.

Rockin’ Robin Jeffers is making his 30th crossing. He and the doublehanded sailors on Pegasus 50, Relentless and Bloodhound – Philippe Kahn, Mark “Crusty” Christensen, Tim Fuller, Erik Shampain, Reed Bernhard and Brian Vander Zanden know what it is Working Day and Night, right through the Break of Dawn and having no Privacy. In deference to MJ, Kahn may have switched from the blue and white gloves that he had on during the start to a white one.

Hard to say, but Euphoria must have overcome all of the crews who have been out there for a week when the wind finally touched down on them. Giving up on the “We’ve Got Forever” to get to Hawaii theme, now they are thinking “We’ve Got a Good Thing Going.” The wind shouldn’t be Gone Too Soon if they Keep the Faith.

And then there is Ben. As he rides up and over Free Range Chicken, will Bruce Anderson and Baja HaHa rally winners be Speechless, will they Cry, will they Scream or will they say “Beat It” when the Speed Demon, Alfa Romeo skipper, passes them in the Morning Glow? They’ll probably think to themselves, “I Wanna Be Where You Are.” 

For everybody out there, the Transpac is much more than One Day in Your Life. Your gear is not Unbreakable and no one is Invincible. The Transpac can be Dangerous. It is always a Thriller. Whatever Happens, don’t let it be a Heartbreaker. Most of you will have at least One More Chance, so Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough. Be Bad, 2 Bad, and make it a Thriller. Always Remember You Are Not Alone and it's not as easy as ABC.