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Family Affair Finishes Under the Cover of Darkness

by Richard Ballantyne, July 22nd, 2012

Family Affair, a Beneteau 45f5 skippered by Tom Buus out of the Milltown Sailing Association of Everett, Washington, crossed the finish line on a perfect star-lit evening. For Tom and his family (for Family Affair was truly a family affair with no fewer than half of the crew named Buus) it was the fulfillment of a dream to tackle a big adventure like the Vic Maui. There were a few bruises along the line, such as tearing up their big spinnakers early in the race and having to suffer from a lack of horsepower just when the heavier winds started getting light, and problems with a macerator pump that those in the know will fully understand how troubling this could be.

But the boat served them well, speeding them to a finish with an elaspsed time of 14 days, 17 hours, and 49 minutes, despite the handicap in sail area. Like all of the other boats, Tom mentioned that it was a great sail, but the skill and attention required to keep the boat on course on cloudly, moonless nights in total blackness was something he had not appreciated before.

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