Tag Archive: vacation

America’s Cup and beyond

Hi Everybody,

As I mentioned in my last post I was going to volunteer for the Oracle Team during the America’s Cup World Series August 21st-26th. I volunteered all week and was able to watch the action as well. The racing was spectacular! I enjoyed watching the AC45’s sail around the bay at amazing speeds. The volunteering was also fun because I enjoyed helping the greatest sailors in the world . On the first day of racing, six teams raced against each other to get into the match racing Quarter Finals. Match racing is one on one racing and fleet racing is where all the boats race against each other. At the gun of the first start, China Team and Luna Rossa Swordfish started a one on one duel to the finish, where Luna Rossa Swordfish earned their way to the Quarter Finals. The other Luna Rosa team raced against Artemis Red. It was a Deja Vu for the fans on the waterfront as Luna Rosa Piranha advanced into the Quarter finals after a victory over Artemis Red. The last match race was between BAR, Ben Ainsle Racing, and Team Korea. BAR won two races agains Team Korea. Teams were slowly eliminated from the match racing to leave Oracle Team USA Coutts and Oracle Team USA Spithill in the finals. The two teams raced against each other on the final day of racing and no one knew who was going to win until the last second of the race, as Oracle Team Coutts crossed the finish line first. During one of the fleet races, later in the week, Oracle Team USA Russel Coutts hit the mark boat doing damage to both his boat and the mark boat. Luckily the shore team was able to repair the boat overnight allowing Coutts to get back on the water the next day. The last fleet race of the series was amazing as well, with the leading boat changing all the time. On the last leg of the race Oracle Team USA Spithill passed Team Korea taking second place. The match racing first place trophy was awarded to Oracle Team USA Coutts and the fleet racing trophy went to Oracle Team Spithill. It was obvious that Oracle’s training in San Francisco and their epic sailing skills lead them to victory during an e extraordinary week of racing. Here is a picture I took of the last fleet race finish:

The week after the America’s Cup World Series, I started school. I had a great start to 8th grade even though my dad was back in the hospital with complication from his ruptured appendix. I am glad to be back in school and excited about the high school process that I have ventured into as an 8th grader. On the third week of school my class went to the Ansel Adams National Wilderness in the Sierra Nevadas for a backpacking trip. My group went from Bowler camp site at 7000 ft to Madera Peak at 10509 ft and then back down over the course of five days. On the top of Madera Peak there is an American flag that had been flown in Afganistan, my whole group held it up and we took a picture. It was very cool to be at 10509 feet holding an American flag that had also been in Afganistan. The backpacking went well, my group had a lot of fun. Even though our water filter broke on the first day we did not turn back, we boiled our water instead. The only downside to boiling our water was that it tasted like ash. We had good weather except for one day of rain. We explored all three Jackass Lakes, and camped at the middle and upper lakes. The area was beautiful. I had never been to a small snow melt lake before and even though it was really cold, it was still fun to swim. The stars were also amazing because there is not a lot of light pollution. Here is a picture of me at Lower Jackass Lake:

Another thing that has happened since my last post was the BAYS #5 regatta at TYC. It was my two year anniversary of my opti sailing career. It was also my last Opti regatta. I have decided that because of my age I should transition out of Optis. I am going to starting sailing lasers at SFYC. I think it is a good idea to start now on a bigger boat while the wind is lighter. I am light in weight for the boat, but I think I will be able to handle it. I am very excited to start sailing Lasers, October is going to be a great month. I am also taking a 420 racing class at the StFYC so that I can get used to that boat and be able to sail it well next year in high school. The 420 is a double handed boat that is sailed in many high schools, I have enjoyed learning how to sail it. I will update you on these new boats, October ACWS and rest of my life as soon as possible.


August Update

Hi Everybody,

A lot has happened since the last post. I will not be writing about everything because I don’t even remember everything perfectly. The first thing that I will tell you about is the BAYS #4 regatta. The regatta was held at the Encinal Yacht Club on Alameda Island on August 4th and 5th. The BAYS #4 was my first regatta since the Heavy Weather Regatta because I had been in France and at camp. On the first day of the regatta I came in eighth, thirteenth, second, fifth, and fourth. The last race, though not the best place, was my best race of the day. The four most experiened sailors, including myself, were talking to our coach during the start sequence and we all started a minute late. I was able to get a fourth place and beat two of the other sailors that started late.I was satisfied with my results of the first day, especially since I hadn’t been sailing for awhile. I did not place very well on most of the races on the second day, except for one where I got a first place. On last upwind leg of my first place race, I was tacking for the last time and my hat fell in the water. I did not get it and I was very thankful when another kid grabbed it from the water for me. I ended up getting sixth overall for the regatta and third in red fleet. I won a Harken document bag that I use as a laptop case. Here are my results from the regatta: BAYS #4. I think that after taking three weeks off of sailing, it was hard for me to do my best at this regatta. I am getting back in the routine now and looking forward to regular practices and doing better in regattas.

A week after the BAYS #4 we went to Huntington Lake for the Pacific Coast Championship, a team trials qualifying regatta in the Sierra Mountains above Fresno. We left at about 1:00 PM and the drive was about seven and a half hours long. It was a very, very long drive. I was looking forwad to the regatta because it is a popular lake for sailing. On the first day I did okay and ended in fourteenth place, three places away from qualifying. On the second day, I don’t know what happened, I was out of the game. On the first race I won the pin and port tacked the whole fleet, this was a very good thing to do. However, even with that great start to the day, I did not qualify. Despite the results of the last two regattas, I believe I will be able to rock the Bays#5 regatta on Labor Day weekend. After the regatta, we headed back to San Francisco. Luckily,the ride back did not take as long as the ride there. I am glad we went the regatta at Huntington Lake, even though I didn’t qualify, it was a good experience. For the rest of the summer I will be trying to sail as much as possible to improve and strenthen my sailing skills.

A couple of other exciting things happening in my life are that we have adopted a puppy and I will be volunteering for the America’s Cup World Sieres next week in SF. You probobly noticed the mistake in Tuesday’s post and I hope you will understand that I was very excited when I was writing and forgot to proofread. Miles is doing really great and there have been no conflict with him and our two cats. Obviously, I am excited and cannot wait for next week when I will be volunteering for Oracle Team USA. I don’t know what I will be doing excactly, but whatever it is, it will be awesome and fun. I am proud to be involved in the America’s Cup in any way. If you are in SF, you can watch the AC World Series in person from the Marina Green. If you aren’t in SF, you can watch the AC World Series races on youtube or maybe NBC. Here is the link: America’s Cup.

Unexpectedly, my dad was diagnosis with appendicitis on Tuesday!  We were in Geyserville but got him home to SF where his doctor is, he was sent to the ER and had surgery last night.  He is doing well and should be coming home soon.  This has been a crazy month so far!

First Update from France

Hi Everybody,

I have been having a great time in France. So far my trip has been full of crazy surprises. Even though there have been a lot of surprises, the trip has been fun. The first surprise of my trip was when my family and I landed in Marseille, our luggage did not land with us. Apparently, it had been left behind in Frankfurt. Luckily, we did not lose our luggage; we were only without it until around noon the next day. After our luggage arrived we all changed our clothes and went in to the town, Salon De Provence. On the next day we went to Aix-en-Provence. On our way there we saw a castle, we decided to go and take a look. We walked up the path to the entrance and saw a garden with hedges designed especially to be in different patterns. Here are some pictures:

The garden.

The castle.

We were surprised when we found out the castle was not open. We got back in our car and head to Aix. When we got to Aix we  found ourselves stuck in traffic and looking for parking. Eventually we found a parking spot and walked to the market. I did not buy anything and I don’t think anybody else in my family did either. After the market, we headed back home and that was it for that day. The next day we headed for Cassis, a small town on the coast. We visited the market there and had lunch. After lunch we walked down to the lighthouse. The lighthouse was an old fashioned, small lighthouse; here are some pictures that I took:

My sister dancing.

The lighthouse.


After we went to Cassis we headed to La Ciotit to look for catamaran lessons and go to the beach. We found a great beach spot and set up camp. I started noticing people going out on paddleboats with slides; I was able to convince my family to go out on one. We had a great time. I was the first one of us to go down the slide. When I got in the water, it was much saltier than I expected. We enjoyed ourselves for an hour and then returned the boat. By then the day was ending so we headed back home. The next day we headed to Arles, a town west of Salon. We walked through the streets and entered the square. We went into a church and I took some pictures using different effects. Here are some of my favorites:

When we left the church we headed to an underground area that used to be a roman building and courtyard. There were different neon sculptures. It was really dark and I was able to get a few good pictures there as well. Here they are:

Here is a picture of neon skulls.

Spider webs hanging from a metal grate.

A accidently blur that ended up cool.

After the underground ruins we headed to a Roman theatre, luckily above ground. Then, we headed a to a museum with a bunch of models of different roman structures. The models were really cool. here are some pictures:

The now underground Roman courtyard we explored earlier.

The museum was interesting but not very big. We left the museum and headed to Nimes, where there is a Coliseum. Sadly, the coliseum was closed, so we left Nimes and headed to the Pont Du Gard, a very old roman aqueduct across a river. The Pont Du Gard was amazing; it was amazing that it has been standing for such a long time. Here are some pictures:

Above is the view looking right, below is the view looking left.

After the Pont Du Gard we headed home to play in the pool. The next day we started out by heading to another castle. When we got there we had to park our car and walk. We walked for a long time and finally we found out that the castle was closed. We headed back down and left to go to another town with a castle and to get lunch. We did not go into it the other castle, but I got a good picture:

After lunch we went to an Abbey. Here are some pictures:

Down in the valley.

After visiting the Abbey we headed home. The next day was my birthday! I started my birthday by sleeping in, when I woke up my family sang happy birthday to me. We left Salon around 9:00 so we could get to La Ciotit. Remember when I told you that the first time we went there we were looking for catamaran rentals? We planned on renting a small catamaran to sail on my birthday. When we arrived at Societie Nautique La Ciotit they told us that we could not go out until 2:00 PM. We went back to Cassis to take a Calanques boat tour. It was forty-five minutes long. Here are some pictures:

After the tour we headed back to the catamaran rental place. Only my dad and I could go out, and before we could rent we had to take a lesson. I was happy to take a lesson because I am interested in catamarans. The lesson and the renting time were really fun. At one point my dad, who was the skipper, started heading downwind. I was trapezeing, hanging out of the boat while being supported by a line that is coming down from the mast, when suddenly my dad fell off the boat! The boat kept going and I unclipped myself just as the sail was crossing sides. I stopped the boat and waited for the teacher, who was in a motorboat, to arrive with my dad. I don’t have any pictures of me sailing because all of the cameras were in the car. In Societie Nautique’s boatyard there was a boat that to me, looks like it was designed after Oracle Racing’s AC 45s. Here is a picture:

I noticed is that the visual hull design is very similar to Oracles hull design. After sailing I was really tired so we went home, back to Salon de Provence. That was the end of my birthday. It was a really great and fun birthday, like every day so far my trip. I think that if I were to write any more, this post would be too long! I will get back to you next week after Normandy and Paris.


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