FULL RACE- Port Townsend to Ketchikan
Team name: Team Bunny Whaler
Team members: Cooper and Nate Rooks
Race vessel: 17? Boston Whaler Harpoon
Homebase: Bainbridge Island, WA
BIO: Seattle was different in the 1980’s. It wasn’t the traffic snarl of tight pants hipsters and Amazon ID badges that we know today. Our hometown retailers still had actual stores, our main industries were catching fish and making planes, and we still counted Norwegians when we took stock of diversity. This was pre-Starbucks, pre-grunge, and going to the top of the Space Needle was still free. Different times.
It would be years before downtown’s strip bars and needle drugs would be displaced by the latest Wolfgang Puck restaurant, and in search of a better life the 1980’s professional class escaped the dark shadow of the city via a short ferry ride to Bainbridge Island- Elliot Bay was the natural moat that kept things on the pleasant from 5 to 9.
Born into both Reagan administrations, the Brothers Rooks weren’t satisfied with the safe embrace of their pine-scented commuter utopia. From the time they had conscious thought they have been seemingly honing the skills and hardening their abilities on the water in order to make that big trip off island on their own terms. A lifetime of dinghy sailing, decades of competitive swimming, collegiate crew, collegiate sailing, and adventures on that have taken them well past the lights of the big city across the bay: sailing the wrong way up the west coast (twice), all the way to Aukland, and an 88-day kayak trip from their home to Haida Gwaii. They could have gotten themselves Stepford wives, settled into 2.5 kids and an Acura, but these guys sought the horizon.
In a move that likely has some of their parent’s yacht club buddies scratching their heads,not only did Cooper and Nate sign on to be part of R2AK’s ragtag navy in 2016, they decided to show up in a Boston Whaler.
In the 1980’s Boston Whaler made sailboats (nope, we didn’t know that either) so in addition to being in the hunt for the official set of prizes and accolades, our hunch is that Team Bunny Whaler is already in the hunt for more global Boston Whaler specific firsts:
- First Boston Whaler to sail to Alaska
- First boat to enter the race whose manufacture advertises them as “unsinkable”
- Most explicit tempting of fates
Welcome to the R2AK brave scions of Bainbridge. Make the 80’s proud.