Punchlist – Act 1: Oman
With all of the preparation for Act 1 of the Extreme Sailing Series completed, the only task left for Max Bulger and Team Oman Air is to sail their best.
Blog 4 Image 1 Bulger
Team Oman Air is ready to go.
- Find talented and experienced boat captain to spend month of January working with Omani shore crew to re-fit boat
- Assemble five crew members from England, Oregon, Massachusetts, a boat off the coast of Panama, and Muscat in Mussanah, Oman
- Train for 7 days out of Marina Bandar Al Rowdha (one Brit and one Omani have a week to teach three Americans how to sail Extreme 40s)
- Greet boatbuilders, who have just stepped off a 12-hour flight, with the news that they have three days to fix brand-new giant hole in transom
- Buy boatbuilders beer when they finish the repair in two days
- Discover that locals’ jokes about watching out for sea snakes while cleaning the bottom of hulls were not, in fact, jokes
- Fall asleep before 10PM every day for a week after rigorous training and boat preparation
- Narrowly avoid running aground and get escorted away from Sultan’s private waters while towing three hours south to regatta venue in Muscat
Oman Sail Headquarters, hosts for the Extreme Sailing Series during Act 1 in Muscat.
- Crane boat out of water for final polish in 25 knots, missing iron lamp post by six inches while failing to communicate with non-English speaking (and somewhat
incompetent) crane operator; laugh about it after, or in Max’s case, restrain desire to hide in the container and cry
- Go up rig underway to mark top of main at reef point, wait for 30 minutes while crew on tramp debates proper reef point
- Continue to fall asleep before 10PM after training sessions
- Drill short-course laps and practice starts in the racing area, less than a hundred yards away from the beach and spectator stands
- Drill short-course laps and practice starts in the racing area, less than a hundred yards away from the beach and spectator stands, with a spectator onboard
- Sail practice races
- Go up rig for a final pre-race scrub of mast, wait for 30 minutes while crew on dock figures out how to turn water supply on
- Double check every piece of line, carbon, metal, fiberglass, tape, plastic, sailcloth, and everything else on Oman Air
- Check everything again
- Struggle to grasp how lucky you are to be surrounded by so much talent and experience, and to appreciate how awesome your teammates are
- Send latest blog to Sailing World
- Fall asleep the night before racing feeling healthy, confident and prepared
☐ Win Act 1
Tomorrow is game day. See you on the water.
Live race coverage starts at 1130 GMT on Wednesday, February 29th via the Live Race Console on www.extremesailingseries.com