Algoma Sailing Club
St. Mary's River,  Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada
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Sault Star, Local News

'You're in for the long haul'

By Brian Kelly, Sault Star
Friday, August 7, 2009 5:59:48 EDT PM

Rob Cameron is ready to take on Lake Superior again.

This is the 11th time the Thunder Bay man has entered the Trans-Superior Yacht Race.

The 590-kilometre trek between Gros Cap to Duluth, Minn. is held every two years. It began in 1969. The race starts at 1 p.m. Saturday.

Cameron, a retired Lakehead University business professor, first entered the race in 1981.

Camaraderie with "friends of a lifetime" joining him for the one of the longest biannual freshwater race in the world prompts him to keep returning. His crew is drawn from Thunder Bay, Winnipeg, Alberta and British Columbia.

"This is our chance to be with the boys for a week or so," said Cameron.

"That's probably the most important part for me."

His entry is the 37-foot C & C Custom 37 sloop, True North. Cameron's best finish saw him reach Duluth in 60 hours. His longest trek took about double that amount of time.

"Every race is pretty well different," he said.

"I'm confident in the boat. I'm confident in the crew so that's not an issue. We'll just take what comes."

That includes a lack of sleep, heavy waters and battling seasickness.

"It's just stamina," said Cameron.

"It's an endurance race. You're in for the long haul."

The Truth North is one of 32 ships registered for this year's race. Most are from Thunder Bay Yacht Club, such as Cameron, and Duluth. There's one local entry. David Steele from Batchawana is racing his Beneteau Oceanus,Steele N Time, in the rally division. About 75 per cent of entered vessels have raced the event before. Crews range in size from one to eight or more.

Algoma Sailing Club member, and race organizer, Jeff Johnston says participants need "a lot of heartiness and fortitude."

"It can be pretty rough," he said of a race that continues around the clock.

"You need a lot of that chutzpah to be able to take on a race like this and do it successfully."

Boats leave Roberta Bondar Marina today starting at 8:30 a.m.

Those on land can follow the race in real time on the Internet.

"Once they start you don't know where they are," said Johnston.

"You don't know who's ahead, who's behind, until the end."

The record time is slightly more than 27 hours.

On the web: www.transsuperior.com

http://race.ionearth.com/2009/glss/transsuperior/


 


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