I have been talking about boats for the GGR in past few posts and now I am finally getting to a point where decisions will be taken.

In Canada, this weekend was a long weekend and I took the opportunity to check out two boats. First one was a Young Sun 35 in Hampton Yacht Club in Hampton Virginia and the second was a Baba 35 in New York.

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I narrowed down to Bob Perry designs(YS35 is a copy of Baba 35). Copy or not, both these boats fit the bill of what I wanted in my GGR boat. As you scroll down to see my earlier post- higher LWL which means higher theoretical boat speed and then be comfortable in big seas. Higher boat speed is understandable but I wanted a boat that would be gentle on the skipper so I will have enough reserves to last me the entire journey. These two also had canoe sterns which are known to be great for bluewater sailing.

I will not comment much on the Young Sun 35, but now I know why those boats are a copy of the Baba and why Robert Perry has distanced himself from them. The build quality is not as good as the boats built by the Tashing yard (Tashiba 36, Baba35, Baba 30, etc). I found man places where structural wood of the boat was in rot and the owner was honestly in denial of it all. All our communication before that was the owner saying “Boat is good shape” but that was not the case. I will not go further into what happened, but I made an unreasonable offer for the boat because the boat was in unreasonable shape to the naked eye. A survey would have revealed mush worse. Young Suns don’t have horizontal stringers, it was expected that the interior cabinet wood would provide that strength.

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So after that 15 mins checking out of the boat, I spent that afternoon at the NASA Langley Visitor Center and thoroughly enjoyed looking at the spacecraft and an IMAX picture of the Apollo 11 mission. It is crazy to think they were planning that we had not yet sailed round the world solo non-stop. We are very minuscule particles of the universe, I could never be what Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins, but by sailing solo non-stop round the world, I could be cool in the sailing world.

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K5JtxB8KVm0

Coming to boat no.2. This is a Baba 35 owned by Todd Rengel. Todd had reached out to me after I posted on the Baba forum looking for a boat. Todd had been in touch with me all along and not put the boat on the market waiting for me to make an offer. I was trying really hard to get to NYC to check it out but couldn’t. I finally made it and I am glad I did.

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First, Todd and Juddith are really genuine sailors and humans. I appreciated the warmth with which they welcomed me to check out the boat. True sailors I would say.

The boat is a Baba 35 named Good Hope they bought from a friend and, I was instantly in love with it. It’s like that vibe you have when you meet someone. This was the good vibe I got from the owners and then from the boat. I wanted to take it out sailing and I wanted to live on it.

I shared a lot of my ideas about the boat with Todd and Juddith not realizing that I was horrifying them with what I was planning to do to the boat in the run-up to the GGR (watertight bulkheads, removing teak, changing a lot of equipment, etc.). Little did I realize that it was very insensitive of me to give an impression that I was going to change the boat they loved so dearly into an unrecognizable boat.

I haven’t been able to get the boat out of my head since I have seen it. I will be working with Todd in the coming days to finalize a purchase and I have assured him that I will not be making radical changes to the boat. I will only be making minimal changes that are required by the race organizers. Apart from that, I think I want the boat to stay the same.

Also, I have to mention that the production quality of the Tashing yard is phenomenally great compared to that of other yards. Even North American yards. I think it will be all smooth sailing if I am able to bring ‘Good Hope’ home to me.

I am an atheist but I am going to pray to the universe to make sure that I can secure the boat. It has so many good things going for it and I felt at home on the boat.

Hopefully, the next blog post will have a conclusion.

Thank you to Ashish for driving half of the 3000km driven in the past 4 days.

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We had some great food in New York as well.

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