Spaceman, Go For Launch!

To help get the Farr 400 Spaceman Spiff ready for Race Week—and make sure Duval Street hadn't dried up—tactician Nick Turney arrived in Key West extra early.

This year for Race Week, I’ll be sailing the new Farr 400. Key West is the class’s first one-design event, and I’m racing with team Spaceman Spiff from Cleveland, Ohio. The owner, Rob Ruhlman (aka Spaceman), and his spacechick/wife, Abby, purchased the boat at the end of last summer. The boat was delivered shortly after Thanksgiving to Sailing Inc. in Cleveland, where it was prepped and groomed into a beautiful racing machine. The team at Sailing Inc. faired the bottom and foils and rigged the boat.

It’s always a large task preparing a brand-new boat for the first event. The rig left Cleveland last Thursday around lunchtime and made it to Key West early Saturday morning. I drove the team’s gear trailer down; first thing Saturday morning I started setting up the boat. Currently, the boat’s in the water and ready to sail. The team plans to begin practicing on Thursday morning. We’re all very excited to get on the water. Practice will start off with basic maneuvers to help us get acclimated with the Farr 400. We then plan to tune up with the other four boats in our fleet to make sure our sails, rig tune, and boatspeed are where they need to be.

Here’s our team for Race Week:


Helmsman- Rob Ruhlman
Main trim- Jim Sminchack
Jib trim- Mike Sheehan
Spin Trim- Mark Wiss
Grinder- Ryan Ruhlman
Pit- Abby Ruhlman
Mast- Doug Moose
Bow- Oakley Jones
Tactics- Nick Turney

It’s a good idea to arrive early to any major event, but arriving early to Key West can be dangerous. The bars have been preparing for Race Week, too, and they’re ready for us. I made sure the past couple nights. I may double-check tonight, as well.

Access‘s _SW‘s complete coverage of Quantum Key West 2012._