Team Elsewhere Wins Second Place in Race to Alaska: Steak Knives

Team Elsewhere’s Martin Gibson prepares a bow line as Captain Rhys Balmer pilots the 33ft Soverell alongside under the pedal after completing the run to Alaska on Wednesday. (Eric Stone/KRBD)

Four other teams crossed the Race to Alaska finish line in Ketchikan on Wednesday night and Thursday morning. A four-man crew from Friday Harbor, Washington took home the race’s second prize: a set of steak knives.

“STEAK KNIVES!” was the cry as Team from elsewhere celebrated their second place finish in the Race to Alaska. The team traveled to Ketchikan on Wednesday evening, crossing the finish line just after 5:30 p.m., just over two days behind the frontrunners. Crew member Josiah Ball told a crowd of spectators that the past 36 hours had been a bit tough as they battled for second place.

“Yesterday afternoon we looked around – we got cruise ship service, basically – and we were like, Oh, ****! We’re only 20 miles in advance! Pour in the steam! said Boule.

But with little wind at the time, the sails of the 33-foot monohull Soverell weren’t much help. So teammate Martin Gibson says they turned to human power.

“We started doing 30-minute pedaling schedules, where you’re on 30 minutes pedaling and rowing too – we have two people pedaling and one person rowing, then one person driving through the kelp,” did he declare.

And in the end, it paid off – at least insofar as earning a set of steak knives counts as a win.

Like the first place winning team, Pure and Wild, Elsewhere took the outer route, west of Vancouver Island. Some teams have been approved for this course this year while others must remain in the inside passage.

The third, Late fashion team, were the first to arrive among those who took the traditional inland route. They arrived just after 11 p.m. Wednesday.

The first two multihull teams to finish sailed Thomas Basin in the early hours of Thursday morning: Vegemite Vigilants took fourth place, and Lost but don’t care claimed fifth. The Kootenay Pedalwheelers, the third and final team on the outside road, arrived Thursday night to secure sixth place.

Several other sailing teams are due to finish in the coming days.

Among those who rely only on human strength, two rowing teams — don’t tell mama and Let’s row maybe – lead the peloton. As of Thursday afternoon, they were near the northern tip of Vancouver Island, about 350 air miles from Ketchikan.

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