Category Archives: Trudeau Yachts

SAIL4LIFE 12M Regatta Last Race

S4L 12M Regatta Last RaceThe last race of the S4L Twelve Meter Regatta was quite remarkable. There were four sail race teams on the water, and all had already proven their skill and endurance by surviving a series of no-nonsense qualifying events. The sailors who came to race on July 11 were indeed ‘the best of the best.’ 🙂

Unfortunately, James Munson had to drop out due to equipment problems. (this happens a lot in RL racing too). Please note that James was way out front in Race #1, on his way to a First Place when his boat crashed. He certainly deserved to be in this group, and hopefully he’ll be back next time.

12M Finals Option BThat left only three boats on the water: TEAM WYC-1, TEAM WYC-2, and TEAM PENGZILLA. They were remarkably evenly matched, with each boat winning one of the first three races.

Race Four was the ultimate decider, the final competition that would determine the team challenge winners for 2015. If you were a spectator that morning, you knew nothing could ever be better than this! One ultimate, winner-takes-all shootout. 🙂

The race that played out after the start gun sounded was absolutely fascinating; it was chock full of tactical decisions and daring moves. I’ll talk about the details soon,  but in my last post I promised you a video of Race #4.

Here it is. This is a ‘racer’s cut’ version, with the clips in sequence and attention to the race marks so you can follow the boats as they sail the course shown above. You can also watch a higher rez version of the video on Vimeo. 🙂

Deja Vu Sim Crossing

deja vu sim crossing

Instant Replay

Here’s an interesting issue. When a boat sails into a new sim, it will often suddenly jump back twenty meters or so and then resail that distance.

To illustrate this point, here’s a small outtake from a video of the S4L 12M Qualifying Races.

deja vu2

click to enlarge

I’ve also posted a few frame captures below. In the first image (A), TEAM WYC2 approaches the Finish on a Run, with EUREKA slightly astern. Image B was captured slightly later, when WYC2‘s bow touched the line. You might think the race was over at that moment, but you’d be wrong. As shown in Image C, WYC2‘s boat suddenly jumped backwards a considerable distance; you can even see the boat’s wake in front of the bow. Image D shows the boat retracing it’s path, cutting the line a second time.

If you play the above video again, you’ll notice that Eureka also shows the same, strange behavior. As it nears the line, the boat sudddenly jumps back roughly 20m.

This is a significant effect that could easily disrupt a close race. Did WYC2 actually finish in Image B, or did it finish several seconds later in Image D? So… what’s going on here?

Funny Numbers

I’m pretty sure the problem above has nothing to do with the race line in Breadnut; I think it happens because the boats cross a sim boundary just before they finish.

Sailing across a sim boundary optimally involves a seamless hand-off of data from one simulator to the next, and that process requires efficient communication between server and client. This sounds straightforward but in practice it’s often imperfect, particularly when several vehicles are trying to cross the same border together. I sailed my first SL boat race back in 2006, and on that day every single boat crashed on the sim edge. 🙂 Although many things have improved in SL since then, sim crossings sadly remain a near death-defying challenge for many virtual skippers.

I’ve been sailing the Trudeau 12 Meter quite a bit recently, and it turns out to have very funny behavior at sim borders. Let me show you.

In the figure below, I’m sailing a boat on a beam reach in 15 kn wind. I sailed West in Linkous while taking a snapshot of the display every second. As the boat moves west within the sim, the X- position coordinate on the interface correspondingly decreases.

Linkous numbers

click to enlarge

In the first image above, the boat is at Linkous (+19).  A few seconds later it should enter Van Daemo sim, but instead the interface reads Linkous (-2) and next reading is Linkous (-8). I assume these negative numbers mean the boat is already moving into the next sim, but the asset “handover” is not yet complete. Proof of this comes one second later, when the interface reads Van Daemo (+241), implying the boat is already 15 m into the sim.

This all makes a certain amount of sense, and is hardly worth talking about; however, what happens next totally confuses me. (Okay okay, I admit that’s not hard to do)

Anyway, as my boat sails further west In Van Daemo, the horizontal position coordinates should continue to decline. The first two frames shown below demonstrate exactly that, with X-positions of  (+235) then (+230). However, the third frame below is one second later, and it registers (+251)! In other words, the boat suddenly jumped back a full 21 m !! The boat continues from that point on it’s original heading and with most of the previous momentum. At average rates of speed, I’d guess that will cost a racer roughly 4 to 8 seconds overall every time it happens.

This is the same problem shown in the video at the top of this page.

Linkous numbers 2

click to enlarge

This sudden “jump back” effect is consistent across many grid locations, and I don’t think it is unique to any specific group of sim server candidates. So far I’ve only looked for it in 12 m boats, but I think the problem is likely far more widespread and server-related.

Having said that, let me also add a few more observations:

  1. The effect is present in Trudeau 12 m traveling under engine only.
  2. I don’t see the effect when walking across a sim border.
  3. I don’t see the effect when driving a small outboard across a sim boundary.
  4. I don’t see the effect when sailing Wildwind OP60.
  5. I do think I’ve seen the effect in some Qwest boats, but I haven’t looked carefully yet.

Chaos Mandelbrot (LCC Admiral and SL-Pundit-In-Residence) tells me this issue of ‘bounce back’ after sim crossing is already widely known and it’s been prevalent across the grid for several months. Nonetheless, I can’t find any good discussion of the problem, and I’d love to hear from someone who can explain what’s going on here. 🙂

DilSpi 2

Old Salts


Jane shows off RJ Kikuchiyo’s Eagle at DYC

I saw Thorvald Larsen online today; he has not been in SL recently, and so it was a real treat to chat with him and update for a few minutes.

Thorvald Larsen

courtesy of Dil Spitz

I met Thorvald in January 2007, I’m not sure where. It was either on the docks of the old SL Nantucket sim, or in an online Wooden Boat discussion thread. I don’t remember which, but it hardly makes a difference. 🙂

Thorvald is a life-long sailor. The Tahiti Ketch he owns was built by his father, and the boat became a major inspiration for Jacqueline Trudeau’s virtual Tahiti Ketch I & II designs.

TL and JFos

If I’m not mistaken, Thorvald also lobbied for “reefing”  as a sail trim feature in SL boats. That idea first came to life in the (rather legendary) Trudeau Twenty, but it quickly became a standard cruising and racing feature in sailboats from many builders. The recent Patchogue II has two reef points!

Thorvald is a stickler for realistic features in classic SL boats, so I had fun today showing off RJ Kikuchiyo’s recreation of the USCGC Eagle that’s docked at DYC on the west side of Knaptrackicon Channel. It’s rather amazing. 🙂


Thorvald is a great example of the way SL provides a platform where real sailors can work with talented digital designers and scripters. When that happens, sometimes wondrous creations emerge, and everyone smiles.

Let me close this little note with a recent clip of Thorvald’s Tahiti Ketch on a day cruise, sailing the waters of Long Island Sound:


Second Sol Closing Party is Sunday

All good things must come to an end sometime… 🙂

Second Sol Closing Party poster

Image courtesy of Dil Spitzharpoon

MoonCats Win Second Sol Crown

Cats WinThe sailing was tough in North Sea on Saturday, but five great teams donned their foul weather gear and raised sail to fight it out one last time to decide the winner of the Second Sol Regatta.

Here’s a brief rundown on the racing action.

Race 1 Results: Course A

In R1 the Blue Marlins took the lead initially, but then Poseidon Linden reared his ugly head, and all the race boats crashed!

Blue Marlins lead R1

Only one team, Moons Love Cats,  had the presence of mind to re-rez and officially cross the raceline. The judges initially considered abandoning R1 and re-running the first race. However, as soon as one boat legally crossed the Finish line, that choice was not an option.

R1 Race Results
1: Moontears Vought ID16 — 00:17:24

2: SerenityAeon Resident ID4 — not Finished
3: diamond Marchant ID2 — not Finished
4: Alain Gloster ID15 — not Finished
5: Ronin Zane ID9 — not Finished
Lap Times:
Moontears Vought ID16 — Start: 00:00:09 — Last lap: 00:17:15
SerenityAeon Resident ID4 — Start: 00:00:00 — Last lap: not finished
diamond Marchant ID2 — Start: 00:00:01 — Last lap: not finished
Alain Gloster ID15 — Start: 00:00:05 — Last lap: not finished
Ronin Zane ID9 — Start: 00:00:05 — Last lap: not finished

Race 2 Course B

R2 began with a remarkable start; four boats simultaneously crossed the line with times of +00:01 or +00:02, with NYC just slightly behind at +00:07. It was a pretty great demonstration of the sailing skill of the Finalist Fleet.

R2 Start DilSpi

Alain Gloster’s Eureka quickly took the lead and held it, shutting down a strong challenge by Blue Marlins, with Moon Cats placing third. Crashes again disrupted the races, but not to an extreme degree.

R2 start 036R2 Race Results
1: Alain Gloster ID15 — 00:12:19

2: SerenityAeon Resident ID4 — 00:16:30
3: Moontears Vought ID16 — 00:17:33
4: Ronin Zane ID9 — not Finished
5: diamond Marchant ID2 — not Finished
Lap Times:
Alain Gloster ID15 — Start: 00:00:02 — Last lap: 00:12:17
SerenityAeon Resident ID4 — Start: 00:00:02 — Last lap: 00:16:28
Moontears Vought ID16 — Start: 00:00:01 — Last lap: 00:17:32
Ronin Zane ID9 — Start: 00:00:01 — Last lap: not finished
diamond Marchant ID2 — Start: 00:00:07 — Last lap: not finished

Race 3 Course C

The third heat on Course C was the best of the Finals set, full of strategy and close tacking. The image below shows how close the fleet was half way through the race, with boats converging from opposing tacks. In fact, Armano led SerenityAeon by only four seconds as they crossed the Finish Line!

R3 close tacking

R3 Race Results
1: Moontears Vought ID16 — 00:13:48

2: SerenityAeon Resident ID4 — 00:13:52
3: Alain Gloster ID15 — 00:14:23
4: Ronin Zane ID9 — 00:14:42
5: Diamond marchant DSQ – DSQ
Lap Times: 
diamond Marchant ID2 — Start: 00:00:02 — Last lap: 00:08:15
Moontears Vought ID16 — Start: 00:00:10 — Last lap: 00:13:38
SerenityAeon Resident ID4 — Start: 00:00:02 — Last lap: 00:13:50
Alain Gloster ID15 — Start: 00:00:02 — Last lap: 00:14:21
Ronin Zane ID9 — Start: 00:00:05 — Last lap: 00:14:37

Race 4 Course C

R4 used the same couse as R3, and once again the race was very tight and hard fought. So much so, that coming around Ziziphus Island three boats converged in near-collision (see below)! Woots!

R4 Race Results
1: Moontears Vought ID16 — 00:14:17

2: Alain Gloster ID15 — 00:14:28
3: diamond Marchant ID2 — 00:15:13- DSQ
4: SerenityAeon Resident ID4 — 00:19:38
5: Ronin Zane ID9 — not Finished
Lap Times: 
Alain Gloster ID15 — Start: 00:00:02 — Last lap: 00:14:21
Ronin Zane ID9 — Start: 00:00:05 — Last lap: 00:14:37

R4 entanglement

At the conclusion of four heats, the Moon’s Love Cats team emerged as the clear winner, racking up three first place wins out of four heats. Here’s the Results table, calculated with Sailwave. With one discard, Moon’s Love Cats scored a ‘perfect’ 3.0 and won First Place. Eureka came in Second Place with a strong 6.0 showing, and Blue Marlins was right behind with a score of 7.0. The sim conditions had the greatest impact on Ronin Zane and Diamond Marchant. Their Grumpy Men and NYC1 entries sufferred lag and repeated crashes, resulting in Fourth and Fifth position totals.

Second Sol Finals Scores

Scoring Comment

The judges had an extended discussion about how to deal with Race 1, since all the boats crashed in that heat. However, under the ISAF Rules of Sailing the solution was  straightforward. Rule 35 states:

… If one boat sails the course as required by rule 28 and finishes within
the time limit, if any, all boats that finish shall be scored according to
their finishing places unless the race is abandoned. If no boat finishes
within the time limit, the race committee shall abandon the race.

In other words, the race committee must abandon and potentially re-run a race when all the competitors fail to Finish. However, in R1 Armano re-rezzed the Moon boat and drove it across the line, legally finishing the course. Once he did that, under Rule 32.1 the race was valid for scoring purposes and the race committee could not simply abandon it. Here’s what Rule 32.1 says:

32.1 After the starting signal, the race committee may… abandon the race… as appropriate… because of foul weather…
However, after one boat has sailed the course and finished within the
time limit, if any, the race committee shall not abandon the race
without considering the consequences for all boats in the race or

Rule 90.3(a) also emphasizes this point:

90.3 Scoring
(a) … A race shall be scored if it is not abandoned and if one boat sails
the course in compliance with rule 28 and finishes within the time limit,
if any, even if she retires after finishing or is disqualified.

The Race Committee might have added a fifth heat to the series in lieu of abandoning R1. I think that would violate the regatta rules (and probably ISAF racing rules too), but I bring it up here to make a point. Even if the fleet raced a fifth heat with Alain finishing First and Armano Last, the Finals Rank would still be the same, as shown below.

SecSol 5 heats

Moon’s Love Cats finished the four heat Finals with a decisive record of 1-3-1-1, and they well earned the Second Sol Championship. I’d like to argue their victory was ‘predictable,’ since they also won every single qualifying race they sailed with Armano as team skipper.

Image courtesy of Orca Flotta

However, going back over the records for the past several weeks of Sec Sol races, the truth is that all five teams won their Finalist spots with near-perfect race scores in the Qualifying Rounds. Going into Saturday’s event it was a real toss-up who would emerge this year’s winner.

I think that says something great about the extent of interest, skill and enthusiasm of so many sailors that make up the Sailing Community in Second Life. Thank you to all of you who helped make this year’s S4L race event huge fun.

I’ll have a lot more to say about this as we get closer to the Award Ceremony and Second Sol Regatta Closing Party this Sunday, July 28 @ 13:30 in Eden Estate!!



The 2013 Second Sol Champions!


Second Sol Finals set for July 20




Second Sol Quals Close

Sec Sol Quals Close

The Second Sol Qualifying Races finished on Saturday, June 22. Twenty teams signed up to compete in the regatta, and each contributed $L5,000 to Sail4Life and the American Cancer Society as an Entry Donation.SEC SOL ROUND ONE 749x1024 In return, each team received a free copy of the Patchogue II raceboat, generously provided by Jacqueline Trudeau.

The fleet of twenty contestants was broken into five ‘timeslot groups’  that raced against each other. The five winners then earned the right to compete in an upcoming Finals \Regatta that will be held in North Sea.

The timeslot qualifying rounds consisted of eight race heats for each group of four boats. The results were scored using the Standard Low Point System, using four discards. In other words, only a team’s best four races counted.

SECOND SOL - QUAL ROUND TWOThere are several advantages to using such a large number of discards in a SL sailboat race. Those benefits were clear in past multi-race events, including the J-Classic and ONE World competitions. On the other hand, four discards increased the risk of a potential tie between boats competing in any particular Second Sol timeslot group. Actually, as the races played out this past week, that never happened. In each group there turned out to be one team that clearly distingushed itself as the ‘best of the best‘ in a very skilled peer group.

Here are the scores for each team identified by contact person and sail number. Please remember that this was a boat race, not a skipper race. The person named below as the “Helm Name” was the contact person responsible for the team, but that person did not necessarily skipper the boat in every (or perhaps any) race. That’s a good thing; in most cases the race team members took turns at the tiller in different races; it was a cooperative venture. 🙂

Sec Sol Quals June 22

If you take a few minutes and look at the table above, you will see that in each timeslot group there was one team that amassed a “perfect score” of 4.0, meaning that they sailed at least four First Place races. You can’t do better than 4.0 in this Regatta, but in all five groups there was one team that slam-dunked the races so skillfully they ended up with a perfect score.

That perfect quintet are:

02- Diamond Marchant- NYC1
05- Ariel Gallais- Moontear’s Lovecats
09- Ronin Zane- Grumpy Old Men Yacht Club
04- SerenityAeon Resident- Blue Marlins
15- Alain Gloster- Eureka

These five will now advance to the Finals Round, where a series of four fleet races will determine the overall champion for this year’s Second Sol competition.

(photos courtesy of Dil Spitz)

Round Two Takes Off!

SECOND SOL - QUAL ROUND TWO(photo courtesy of Dil Spitz)

Second Sol Round Two Lineup

Sec Sol Round Two lineup

The Second Sol Regatta Round Two takes off this weekend, with five timeslot races on June 21-22. Here’s a list of the timeslot teams and the race venues.


FRI 12:30 – SLCC/ Farragut raceline
013 Pazzo Pestana — FIYC 1
012 Pensive Mission — DYC Mowmows
002 Diamond Marchant — NYC1
008 EmmanuelMara Resident — MSRSC TeamDM

SAT 09:00 – Tradewinds YC/ Siracusa raceline
003 lesbo charisma — Team Arimto
006 ariel gallais — Moon’s love cats
020 Us Vemo — Kingfisher
018 Mami Charmann — WYC1

SAT 12:00 – Starboards YC/ Pacific raceline
007 Allie Tomsen — Seafarers
011 Anstett Brandenburg — Sea Lions
019 Bear Silvershade — Shadow Seekers
009 Ronin Zane — Grumpy Old Men Yacht Club

SAT 15:00 – FIYC/ Plum Gut raceline 
021 KalEl Tryce — Bistro on Blake
014 Aquarius Paravane– Echo Beach Bums
004 SerenityAeon Resident — Blue Marlins
005 Victor Cruiser — Wind on face

SAT 18:00 – Three Pines Sail Center/ Sulu raceline
015 Alain Gloster — Eureka
010 Chaos Mandelbrot — Penguin Racing Team
017 SachBee Resident — WYC2
001 Arrekusu Muramichi — Kazenojin Seiringu

I’ll update the list of skippers and teams prior to raceday. If any team has a scheduling problem and would like to switch groups, please contact Jane Fossett in Second Life and we’ll swap things around. 🙂

Here are the charts for Round Two. Please be sure to check the Discussion Thread for chart updates over the next few days.

Second Sol FINALS Race

At the end of Round Two, we’ll tally up the point scores and determine the winners of each of the timeslot groups. Those five teams will then compete in a Finals Regatta hosted by North Sea that will decide the Second Sol Champions. 🙂

The Finals event was originally scheduled for June 23. However, several sailors pointed out that date was too inflexible. There would be no practice time, and sailors on the Final Five teams might well have RL obligations that day.

I’ve therefore agreed to postpone the Finals. Once we have the Five Finalist teams late on Saturday, we’ll work to pick a new date and time over the subsequent two weeks that is acceptable to all the competing boats. It’s their race, after all; we can’t sail a Finals unless all the boats make it to the Startline, full of hot air and ready to roar. 🙂

Rnd One 1500

Second Sol Round One

SecSol beginsKudos to everyone who sailed, hosted, and helped staff the five timeslot events and twenty race heats of Second Sol Round One. Next weekend we’ll do Round Two, and then combine the scores to pick the Finalists who will sail for the Second Sol Championship on June 23.

Here’s a summary of the point totals so far, using Standard, Low-Point Scoring under Appendix A of the Race Rules.

Round One

Click to enlarge

SS RndOne1800 263

Remember, the boats will race again on June 21-22, and the final scoring will only count each team’s top four races.  In case of a tie, we’ll use Appendix A 8.1 and 8.2 to break the tie to get five Finalist boats to compete for the championship in North Sea on June 23.

SecSol Jun14 1230

image courtesy of Dil Spitz!