If they overcome the first phase, six south Island sailing teams – including one solo mariner – will human-power vessels to Alaska from Victoria this month.
With no motors or support teams allowed, the Race to Alaska (R2AK) is about physical endurance, saltwater knowledge and tenacity.
“As these teams sail into the forgotten reaches of our coastal wilderness, the stories that do come out will be incredible,” race boss Daniel Evans said in a news release.
Teams have 48 hours to prove themselves during stage one, which leaves Port Townsend, Wash. on June 13 at 5 a.m. The stretch across the Strait of Juan de Fuca to Victoria is aptly named The Proving Ground. On June 16 at noon teams set sail on the leg dubbed To the Bitter End – battling more than 1,100 km (710 mile) to Alaska.
Greater Victoria teams include Fashionably Late, Moonipulators, Malolo, Pestou, Oaracle as well as Pturbodactyl from Salt Spring Island.
Team Pestou features solo sailor Eric Pesty, running a custom-designed pedal drive system on a 24-foot trimaran.
True to their name, Team Oaracle – Janice Mason and Ian Graeme – plan to paddle to Alaska aboard their 22-foot kayak.
Team Malolo members Duncan Gladman, Tom Kassberg, Paul Gibson, Gavin Bracket plan to sail a custom trimaran by tandem bicycle.
Fashionably Late out of Brentwood Bay features Kelsey Fletcher, Jess Bossert, Jennifer Vincent, Paul Sarena, Mark Aberle, Colin Fletcher who use dual pedal drives to float their boat.
The Moonipulators of Claude Monchamp, Mary Carrigan, Paul Monchamp, Thorston Hoefling, Serjei Moukminov are also in pedal power mode, specifying they use the original adjustable pitch prop and shaft for their 1974 sailboat.
Victoria teams L.A.S.E.R. and Angus Rowboats are set to sail the Proving Grounds only.
All teams come with groovy history shared in intriguing bio narratives at r2ak.com.
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