A great evening at the Sequoia Yacht Club

The Sequoia Yacht Club, based in Redwood City, CA, USA, was hosting their kick off dinner for the summer racing series today. I was also invited to speak and present my story as a participant in the Singlehanded Transpacific Yacht Race. I have been racing with the club members for the past few months, as crew on SP’s boat Frequent Flyer. Everyone was welcoming, encouraging and good-natured. I had a wonderful time chatting with the club members. Presenting my story brought back good memories. I must admit, every time I watch this little video, I want to go again! And for a moment I do toy with the idea of buying a very small sailboat and try to do this again in 2020.

The club facility is well organized and all the equipment works. The chef did a fantastic job with the menu and set aside a plate for me to enjoy after the talk. It was really a good night and I’m thankful for everyone at SYC. Here are the Google slides of the presentation I did. It has a bunch of links as well.


My wife and I have been discussing the possibility of starting a crowdfunding campaign to boost our budget. So I thought I’d put the idea to the test tonight. Who better than sailors would understand some’s desire to sail 4 oceans? At the end of the presentation, I asked for a show of hands for folks who would contribute if invited to help a crowdfunding campaign for our circumnavigation attempt. To my surprise, about half of the crowd raised their hands, which was both emboldening and encouraging. I know what I have to do next! And tomorrow I talk with a Class40 broker.

Use the Contact Us form if you would like to host Philippe for a presentation as well.

Philippe’s quick speech after the award ceremony at the Nawiliwili Yacht Club

Looking for our boat

We’re still looking for our sailboat. Selecting a sailboat for this course is rendered extremely difficult due to our limited budget. For the sake of the proverbial stake in the ground, let’s state our budget to be around $150,000 for a 3 years campaign. Note that the boat may suffer major damage, so we have to assume that it will be a loss for the sake of planning. In other words, we cannot plan to recover some of our costs by selling the boat after crossing the finish line.

Many books, many blog posts have been written about the important characteristics of a sailboat for circumnavigating. The focus is often cruising, not so much racing, which is closer to what I will be doing. Looking at boats that have raced singlehanded around Earth is a good way to identify possible candidates, as race committees usually define very strong safety requirements for the participating vessels. But those vessels are often supported by sponsors, which we’re not (yet?).

It is of course of primary importance that the vessel is safe. We would also like the boat to be fast and comfortable, at least to a spartan level.

Where we’re looking

So we’ve been browsing a few web sites: local craigslist,,, Owen Clarke Design. But with no luck so far, so we’re still looking for our sailboat; it appears that we will need to find another 100k, or go slower than we want. A decision will have to be made: fast or slow.

When I looked for my first sailboat I received help from the SSS. It took a while but someone informed me of Double Espresso, which was really a perfect fit at the time, as proven by my results with that boat.

How I met my first sailboat.
After sailing to Hawaii.