Editor’s Note

computer & table

Just before Christmas 2006 essential engineering work was carried out on the FIRE Project system on which this weblog runs. During this work some data was lost at portal level.

This was a combination of an attempted cracking attack which activated a defense system, requiring manual actions by our admin team, and human error during the restart process.

Only data residing in the portals was affected and no data was lost at the mneumatron which provides the main data archives and databases. The FIRE Project team was able to repost data to all CMS and weblog portals using other backup sources.

It was decided that all weblog postings would be reposted but this has meant that the postings are no longer in strict date order. During reposting the editors have included the original reposting date stamp.

Editor

Fun with Bill Heine

Originally posted November 27th, 2006

agxBillHeine

Bill Heine

This evening for 3 hours Adrian and I became radio presenters when we co-hosted the Bill Heine Show on BBC Radio Oxford between 4 and 7pm. Bill is a fabulous character – he’s the guy who has a shark sticking out of the roof of his house in Headington (see link below). We discussed everything from the Alpha Global Expedition to God to sushi to divorce. A great experience.

www.bbc.co.uk/oxford/local_radio/index.shtml

www.headington.org.uk/history/misc/shark.htm

ftnews.firetrench.com

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We visit the Oxford Sailing Club

Originally posted December 3rd, 2006

agxOxfordsailingclub

Pictured left to right – John Barker (OSC), Louise, Adrian (with Benji and Gabriel), Bill Proctor (ex Commodore of OSC), Pam Gee (Oxford Sailability) and Geoff Worrall (OSC)

During our broadcast on Radio Oxford’s Bill Heine Show on Monday, we received an invitation to visit the Oxford Sailing Club in Farmoor.

We were treated to a delicious lunch and learnt about their ambitious project to raise £200,000 to build a special pontoon which will enable disabled sailors and their helpers to access their boats easily and safely. This wheelchair friendly pontoon once finished will be the only one in Oxfordshire and Farmoor Reservoir is where Oxford Sailability, the local disabled sailing group is based. So far ‘The Farmoor Reservoir Pontoon Project’ has raised an impressive £65,000. Many fund raising initiatives are underway at the moment including the sale of personalised pontoon planks for £200 each. Adrian hopes to help this incredibly worthy effort next year by giving a talk to the Club (approximately 1,000 members) about The Alpha Global Expedition.

Oxford Sailing Club, Farmoor Reservoir, Oxford, OX2 9NS

www.pontoonproject.com

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Adrian delivers Cape Horn talk at Gallery Hadley

Originally posted December 1st, 2006

agxAdrianHadleytalk

 

Last night Adrian spoke about his Cape Horn experience to an enthusiastic audience at The Gallery Hadley. He discussed the history, geography and climate of the Horn and showed film footage of his own journey around it. Our thanks to Bob and Tina Hadley for providing the perfect venue and for hosting the evening so well. Gallery Hadley is housed inside a beautiful converted church in the picturesque market town of Thame in Oxfordshire, and is well worth a visit.

agxgalleryhadley

Gallery Hadley

www.tinahadley.com

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bb.firetrench.com

Fun with Bill Heine

Originally posted November 27th, 2006

This evening for 3 hours Adrian and I became radio presenters when we co-hosted the Bill Heine Show on BBC Radio Oxford between 4 and 7pm. Bill is a fabulous character – he’s the guy who has a shark sticking out of the roof of his house in Headington (see link below). We discussed everything from the Alpha Global Expedition to God to sushi to divorce. A great experience.

www.bbc.co.uk/oxford/local_radio/index.shtml

www.headington.org.uk/history/misc/shark.htm

bb.firetrench.com

ftnews.firetrench.com

www.alphaglobalex.com

Southern Ocean Rescue

ECOVERreachesCapeTown

Originally posted November 26th, 2006

Mike Golding had to turn back to rescue fellow competitor, Alex Thomson after his keel failed in the Velux 5 Oceans race and then sustained a dismasting himself. Golding’s boat, Ecover is now making for Cape Town. The Southern Ocean is an unforgiving environment and particularly dangerous for yachtsmen because the route takes them out of air sea rescue range and there is little or no shipping in the area. During my rounding of Cape Horn, I was driven south by a storm and out of range of rescue services – it is a daunting feeling to know you are at the mercy of the elements.

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sar.firetrench.com

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Route Du Rhum Race

SteveRavussin

Originally posted November 8th, 2006

Within the last twenty-four hours two boats competing in the Route Du Rhum race have capsized in horrendous conditions in the North Atlantic. Steve Ravussin on Orange or rather under it had the good fortune to be rescued by the Okhta Bridge, a Russian flagged vessel of the Sovcomflot fleet.

Sovcomflot and its Chief Executive, Sergei Frank were extremely helpful to me in negotiating with the Russian authorities to secure permissions for the Alpha Global Expedition to transit the Northern Sea Route as part of the first single-handed vertical circumnavigation.

Shortly after Ravussin’s experience, Ross Hobson on Ideal Stelrad was bettered by 50 knot headwinds and 20 foot seas. He managed to activate his emergency beacon and the signal was picked up by Falmouth coastguard.

Autumnal weather in the North Atlantic can be unpredictable and ferocious as I learnt last year when I set off on the Alpha Global Expedition. Depressions can deepen quickly and hit sailors with little or no warning. Caught carrying too much sail, as happened to me on a number of occasions, can immediately put a boat in peril. Several times during my voyage across the northern Atlantic, we alerted Falmouth coastguard to potential situations when I found myself in heavy weather. Their response was always entirely calm and professional. Just knowing they were aware was a great comfort.

Both Steve and Ross are now safe, which must be the principal concern. Their respective experiences will give them an edge in future races knowing, as they will, the calamities which can unfold in the blink of an eye.

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Roz the Rower

RozatSea

Having crossed the Atlantic solo, Roz Savage is getting ready for her next adventure, a solo row across the Pacific.

There’s a .PDF document with the latest news which can be downloaded from Broadly Boats. Just visit bb.firetrench.com open a registered reader account, and download the document from the Downloads Section at Broadly Boats. There are also other benefits from registering and its all free!! including registration.

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System Restore

As essential engineering work completes, we are rebuilding the information posted from November 23.

The first portal to be restored will be http://ftnews.firetrench.com which carries synopsis news for this and other FIRE Project Portals. This will enable us to bring the FIRE News Portal up to dater and then to carry new breaking news.

During the next few days we will be checking each portal in turn and restoring information that was posted from November 23. We thank readers for their patience and are hoping to have fully restored all FIRE Project systems by the end of the week.