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Displaying items by tag: south pacific

We don't really think about it on a daily basis, but the Earth is still changing all the time. It just happens so slowly that we can't really perceive it. But every now and then, things speed up… a lot. Check out these photos below to see what a cruising yacht in the South Pacific witnessed.

As they got closer, what they had taken to be a sandbar revealed itself to be something else entirely.

A huge amount of pumice stone was floating to the surface of the water. It looked like a beach.

They decided to get a closer look and redirected their yacht towards it.

It looks like a beach in the middle of the ocean!

The crew decided to sail through it, leaving a break in the stone behind them as they went.

They wondered what could have caused this expanse of stone to suddenly appear.

The field of pumice was getting even larger as they passed through it. The crew had an uneasy feeling and upped their speed.

Once they were a safe distance away, they heard a faint rumbling. Looking back they saw water bubbling from the surface.

The source of the pumice stone was an underwater volcano that was actually erupting at the time!

They anchored to watch this tremendous event. Massive plumes of smoke filled the sky.

As the smoke cleared, they noticed something strange just at the water's surface...

It was land!

The stunned crew couldn't believe what they were seeing: It was the actual birth of a new island.

They sailed a little bit closer to see if their eyes were playing tricks on them.

But it was real. The peaks of this new land mass were already taking form.

It was one of the rarest events imaginable!!!

They were able to witness such an impossible sight… and also they apparently very narrowly escaped with their lives!

Published in Cruising
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The Half Ton Class was created by the Offshore Racing Council for boats within the racing band not exceeding 22'-0". The ORC decided that the rule should "....permit the development of seaworthy offshore racing yachts...The Council will endeavour to protect the majority of the existing IOR fleet from rapid obsolescence caused by ....developments which produce increased performance without corresponding changes in ratings..."

When first introduced the IOR rule was perfectly adequate for rating boats in existence at that time. However yacht designers naturally examined the rule to seize upon any advantage they could find, the most noticeable of which has been a reduction in displacement and a return to fractional rigs.

After 1993, when the IOR Mk.III rule reached it termination due to lack of people building new boats, the rule was replaced by the CHS (Channel) Handicap system which in turn developed into the IRC system now used.

The IRC handicap system operates by a secret formula which tries to develop boats which are 'Cruising type' of relatively heavy boats with good internal accommodation. It tends to penalise boats with excessive stability or excessive sail area.

Competitions

The most significant events for the Half Ton Class has been the annual Half Ton Cup which was sailed under the IOR rules until 1993. More recently this has been replaced with the Half Ton Classics Cup. The venue of the event moved from continent to continent with over-representation on French or British ports. In later years the event is held biennially. Initially, it was proposed to hold events in Ireland, Britain and France by rotation. However, it was the Belgians who took the ball and ran with it. The Class is now managed from Belgium. 

At A Glance – Half Ton Classics Cup Winners

  • 2017 – Kinsale – Swuzzlebubble – Phil Plumtree – Farr 1977
  • 2016 – Falmouth – Swuzzlebubble – Greg Peck – Farr 1977
  • 2015 – Nieuwport – Checkmate XV – David Cullen – Humphreys 1985
  • 2014 – St Quay Portrieux – Swuzzlebubble – Peter Morton – Farr 1977
  • 2013 – Boulogne – Checkmate XV – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1985
  • 2011 – Cowes – Chimp – Michael Kershaw – Berret 1978
  • 2009 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978
  • 2007 – Dun Laoghaire – Henri-Lloyd Harmony – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1980~
  • 2005 – Dinard – Gingko – Patrick Lobrichon – Mauric 1968
  • 2003 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978

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