Induction Ceremony of Hall of Fame Sailors by HSHOF in Annapolis

Sunday, the National Sailing Hall of Fame (NSHOF) held its third annual induction of our nation’s most celebrated sailing yacht mariners. For a backdrop to the occasion several vessels lined the Annapolis City Dock Park pier and Pride of Baltimore II stood large and rakish having sailed into town Saturday with two loud cannon salutes. Deck tours of Pride II were made available to the public both days and, a private reception for the inductee honorees was held afterward. The weather was fabulous – clear, dry, warm enough for light clothing. 

 

Some of the honorees were posthumous but had descendant family appear to receive the bestowed honor. Their stories of their ancestors were interesting and humorous for their personal perspective. I was aware of several of the honorees and their contributions to American yachting sailing history. There were several racing heroes recognized, as well designers and photographers. Interestingly, there was a well-known sailing yacht construction company founder recognized. To get the full lowdown go to the NSHOF web site. 

 

During the post ceremony cocktail reception aboard Pride of Baltimore II there were additional dignitaries aboard. Gary Jobson was one of the speakers for the ceremony providing context and visuals for the audience. Aboard from the audience were the directors of the Philadelphia Independence Seaport Museum as well the director of Mystic Seaport, along with many of the Board of Directors of NSHOF. The Mayor of Annapolis was aboard as well. 

 

Pride of Baltimore II‘s crew did a great job of preparing the ship for all and there were many compliments to the fine appearance of the ship. Very nice praise from a very discerning crowed!

 

Jan C. Miles and the well dressed hosting crew of Pride of Baltimore II

THE 25TH BIRTHDAY OF PRIDE OF BALTIMORE II

25 years ago today Pride of Baltimore II was commissioned into service by the State of Maryland and I sailed her out of Baltimore as her first full-time captain. Today I remain one of her two full-time captains with Jamie Trost and am currently sailing into Cambridge, Maryland to share with 7th and 8th grade students of Dorchester County the story of Baltimore Schooner Privateers; the Defense of Baltimore from British invasion for the express purpose of destroying the Fell’s Point shipyards building the Privateers, but failed and withdrew leaving an emotionally relieved American citizen Frances Scott Key who witnessed the British depart as well the National flag rise the morning after the bombardment over the defending Fort McHenry and be moved to write the poetry that are the words to our national anthem the Star Spangled Banner.

I look back in astonishment to not only my 25 years being a part of the inspiring voyages of the 2nd Pride representing the story of Baltimore and Maryland Citizens’ of our past & present but also to my many times as master of the First Pride and her voyages representing the renaissance of Baltimore’s Downtown and Inner Harbor.

It is and has been my honor to have been a part of the dedicated team of professional traditional sailing vessel masters to sail both Pride’s of Baltimore under the management of Pride of Baltimore, Inc. far and wide (Armin Elsaesser, Pete Boudreau, Sid Miller, Bob Glover, Dan Parrott, John Beebe-Center, David Bradley, Jamie Toast). All but one of these captains were masters of the second Pride (Pete, Armin and I were captains of the first Pride) and helped extend the voyage range of the first Pride (North America & Caribbean plus Western Europe) out to the Eastern European nations of Ukraine and Russia as well those of Eastern Asia, China, Taiwan, Korea and Japan and almost everywhere in between. As well telling the inspiring coming of age stories that describe the American War of 1812, the writing of our National Anthem in Baltimore and of the modern renaissance of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor.

Meanwhile the ship, Pride of Baltimore II, is today as strong, possibly stronger, than she was when brand new 25 years ago. Her original masts and spars were changed from grown tree to laminated wood and altogether represent a significant increase in strength as well much greater resistance to rot. The diligent maintenance Pride II receives has preserved the excellent construction by the builders. If the last 25 years can be a prologue for the future, Pride of Baltimore II ought to easily last much longer than another 25 years. Quite likely double that. The second Pride’s voyages have shown to the world a vessel of strength and of speed as well of breath taking American beauty admired around the world. In fact Marylander’s sailing Pride II is the most worldwide renowned of any American sailing vessel sailing today. The citizens of Baltimore, Maryland and also the nation are the recipients of global admiration as a result of the consistent performance and beautiful appearance of a vessel history totally unique to the Chesapeake Bay and Baltimore.

May the respect and admiration of the nation and the globe provide the citizens of Maryland and Baltimore with the desire to continue to support future voyages of their PRIDE in perpetuity.

Captain Jan C. Miles

FIRST IN CLASS AA FOR PRIDE OF BALTIMORE II IN GREAT CHESAPEAKE BAY SCHOONER RACE DOES NOT TELL THE WHOLE STORY

“1st in Class by Pride of Baltimore II in the 24th annual 2013 Great Chesapeake Bay Schooner Race” does not tell the whole story. Among many stories that can be told of this race, one of them is Pride of Baltimore II’s displacement defying performance and the crew that made that performance transpire.

Being first in class does not transmit the fact that Pride of Baltimore II is the heaviest schooner in the fleet yet finished close behind the two fleet leaders and very light displacement schooners, while a full 2.5 hours ahead of any other schooner, and 3.5 hours ahead of the next heavy displacement schooner.

The two lead schooners were America 2.0 and Woodwind. America 2.0 crossed two hours ahead and Woodwind crossed 20 minutes ahead. Both are members of the light displacement large schooner Class A. Pride of Baltimore II is a member of the heavy displacement large schooner Class AA.

For nearly half of the race it was an upwind beat. Pride of Baltimore II made 14 tacks until the wind changed and the race became a reach & run to the finish. During the beat to windward, Pride of Baltimore II held up with the leaders remaining about 20 minutes behind. Pride of Baltimore II continued to keep up with Woodwind for the reach to the finish while both were left in the dust by America 2.0.

So, what about sailing the heavy displacement Pride of Baltimore II to windward? What does it take to hang in with the fastest and weatherly-light displacement schooners? It is only by virtue of Pride of Baltimore II’s sailors, the Crew and the Guest Crew. They did a stellar job of working together, coordinating the complicated shifting of sails from side to side for 14 tacks in a most efficient way, and trimming the shifted sails to best sailing shape. Passing sail quickly meant Pride of Baltimore II spent less time slowed down by tacking. All sailboats tack to windward, the success determining factors: how quickly they do so and how quickly they accelerate out of a tack. Pride of Baltimore II’s crew being quick about passing sail and immediately finding the proper trim meant she could start accelerating sooner. She would still be slower to accelerate than the lighter schooners. An efficient tack and proper re-trimming of sails still meant being quicker than normal – this means the light boats would have less opportunity to stretch their lead by accumulating distance. Pride of Baltimore II’s Crew & Guest Crew kept themselves available for all the tacks rather than loose efficiency by shifting into watches right away, knowing that once the wind change came and Pride of Baltimore II could sail directly down the Chesapeake Bay, they would then be able shift into watches. In the meantime, between tacks they could take a rest.

Displacement is often overlooked by participants & observers of this schooner race. Pride of Baltimore II is almost 190 displacement long-tons (around 420,000 pounds.) If Woodwind weighs 50 tons, that would be around 110,000 pounds. America 2.0 is larger than Woodwind but is very light weight for her size. Maybe she weighs 70 tons (150,000 pounds). Comparatively, both Woodwind and America 2.0 have more sail for their weight than Pride of Baltimore II, but Pride of Baltimore II has more sail area overall. There are other aspects of difference as well. They are of less beam than Pride of Baltimore II’s 26 feet at her waterline of 91 feet. For sure Woodwind is a lot narrower than Pride of Baltimore II. I suspect the same is so for America 2.0. The beam to length ratio for Pride of Baltimore II is 0.28. In other words Pride of Baltimore II is nearly a third her length wide. Chances are Woodwind and America 2.0 have ratios that are smaller than Pride of Baltimore II – this meaning they are likely narrower for their length than Pride of Baltimore II is. Draft for both would be substantially less than Pride of Baltimore II’s 12.5 feet. While it is much easier to notice Pride of Baltimore II has a lot of sail area and is indeed longer, when one factors in weight, it becomes pretty easy to understand why the lead vessels of Class A would generally be quicker to accelerate than Pride of Baltimore II.

Pointing to windward is a key factor for racing. Different vessel designs have different abilities to point to windward. Most of the windward pointing ability a boat has is in the shape of the hull. A barge can have a very windward capable sail plan to sail with but will still be unable to slip through the water nicely to achieve actual windward ability due to the square and shallow shape of the hull. The light displacement Class A boats are all designed with slim hulls that get narrower still down deep, hence providing little resistance to sliding forward. The most modern schooners of today have canoe hulls with fins attached underneath, like wings are to an airplane fuselage. These vessels are more easily driven through the water than the already easily driven narrow hulls of older style yacht schooner designs, and they can also accelerate rather quickly. If their wing-like keels are really small for their size of hull and sail plan they may go really fast when the wind is a reaching or running angle, but they won’t be able to point as well to windward. Due to being so small, they drift sideways more than those with bigger winds. Although, they will be able to sail fast while not pointing so close to the wind. It was interesting for me to observe Woodwind out point America 2.0 while America 2.0 sailed faster. Meanwhile Pride of Baltimore II was sailing closer to the wind than America 2.0 but not as close as was Woodwind, while Pride of Baltimore II was sailing about as fast as Woodwind but not as fast as America 2.0. These differences forced America 2.0 to sail more distance faster than Woodwind or Pride of Baltimore II; all three vessels stayed pretty close to each other at the front of the fleet during the beat to windward. Then, when the wind changed to a reach, Pride of Baltimore II’s longer waterline length made for good speed to keep up with Woodwind’s narrow hull, even narrower keel and overall very light weight, while America 2.0 slipped away into the distance with her canoe hull, wing keel and even lighter weight for her size.

In the end though, as it has been for 25 years, it is Pride of Baltimore II’s crew that make the final difference (and always have for all the successful racing Pride of Baltimore II has done.) This year 1st Mate Will Mclean did a fantastic job teaming up with 2nd Mate Barbara Krasinski and Bosun Drew Salapatek to create good organization of the rest of the Crew & Guest Crew. These young officers organizing, everyone’s willingness and strong hearts, made Pride of Baltimore II tack much quicker than I have seen all this year (largely due to a successful experiment for passing sails more simultaneously than normally done.) By keeping all hands on deck until all of the tacking was done, the crew had enough power to manage simultaneous passing of Pride of Baltimore II’s many loose footed sails – something we do not normally do because of normally being on watches for voyages, hence not having as many persons on deck. Once the wind change came and Pride of Baltimore II was reaching down the Chesapeake Bay right behind the two leaders, the crew went into watches and started to get rest. When Pride of Baltimore II “reaches” there is no tacking and no regular, significant sail adjustment; there is only steering and keeping an eye on things, or striking or setting sail based on rise or fall of wind strength. To keep the crew energy up Pride of Baltimore II’s Cook Kit Cusick did a bang up job of laying out plenty of food and keeping it available for snacking all race long, especially during the night after a fantastic supper. Kit also was on deck helping out very beneficially with the tacking.

So, who were all those hard working Pride of Baltimore II Crew and PRIDE Guest Crew that had such heart & grit to keep all of those 14 tacks as quick as possible? In addition to the officers mentioned above there is: Chad Lossing as Engineer/Deckhand. Kit Cusick, Ship’s Cook. Deckhands Nate Hathaway, Sam Hilgartner, Brittany Mauer, Rebecca Prasher, Lydia Mathewson and Jesse Wiegel. Pride of Baltimore II Guest Crew were Jeannie Poole & Jim Hilyard. Both old hands having been aboard multiple times for voyages in various parts of the globe. And Guest Crew new comers Curt Keim, Eric Heinbaugh and Rick Prothero. Everyone contributed greatly to sailing Pride of Baltimore II so she could finish the race along with the fast, light weight boats. Wowing all who observed by doing so, while still being representative of the vessels of Baltimore’s schooner privateers of the 1812 War and the reason why the British Navy came to attack Baltimore so as to burn the shipyards building the remarkable Chesapeake Bay schooners so they could no longer be effective privateers.

 

Jan C. Miles and the gung-ho racing crew of GCBSR Class AA 1st place finisher, Pride of Baltimore II

RAIN. RAIN. RAIN. Classic Nor'easter blowing in the Mid Atlantic Region.

Date: Thursday October 10, 2013

Location: Baltimore Marine Center in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor

Lots of rain. Forecast promises lots more. Wind from NE blowing from between 10-20 knots with gusts forecast to reach 30 knots today & tonight. PRIDE is obligated to depart for Philadelphia to arrive there Friday.  October 11 – 13 is the Old City Seaport Festival.  Looks like a wet and breezy motoring trip all night long. Ugh! At least it won’t be really rough like for an offshore trip. The run to Philly is protected by the DelMarVa Peninsula and New Jersey. Except for some bounce we can expect between the Patapso River and the Eastern Shore of the Upper Chesapeake Bay the overall sea-state of The Bay and the Delaware River should be pretty low. But 30 knot gusts will surely slow PRIDE down with the windage of her large and complex rig.

PRIDE is in home waters for the first time since mid May. For all hands it is great to be aboard PRIDE in her home waters. There is lots to do and lots of distraction ashore for those times when crew get time off. For the rest of the sailing season PRIDE will get around The Bay. Forth and back to Philly. Then down to Portsmouth, VA with the Great Chesapeake Bay Schooner Race. Then back to Maryland and over to the Eastern Shore to Cambridge for some school education sails. Then over to the Western Shore to Annapolis for the annual National Sailing Hall of Fame induction ceremony to the Sailing Hall of Fame. Then back to the Eastern Shore to Chestertown for SULTANA’s Rig-Down Weekend. Then home again to Baltimore where there are a couple of 1812 War documentaries to participate in as well the PRIDE AFTER DARK fundraiser for PRIDE’s 25th Birthday. You do not want to miss that event! Friday November 8th!!! Last but not least for this year will be Baltimore’s Inner Harbor Lighted Boat Parade Saturday evening December 7th. It has been four years since the last time PRIDE participated. Come down to the Inner Harbor and see PRIDE all lit up for the Holidays. Then to rig-down and winter cover and crew dispersal for the Holidays. Busy, busy, busy. Just like all of you faithful readers!

Sometime during the above period in Baltimore there ought to be some day-sails. Maryland weather in the fall can be wonderful as easily as it can be unsuitable for boating. Keep an eye on our web site for possible day sails. Weather permitting…meaning comfortable weather rather than unsafe weather…there will be an opportunity to experience one of PRIDE’s last sails of the year.

Signed Jan C. Miles and the happy to be in home waters crew of PRIDE OF BALTIMORE II