Team members: Peter O’Donoghue
Hometown: Renton, Washington, USA
Race vessel: Angus Sailing Row Cruiser
Human propulsion: Oars
“HOA 5.2: No resident of (housing development name redacted) shall construct, obtain, or operate any structure, temporary or otherwise, whose purpose is in any way connected to the housing, breeding, and/or egg production of any type of bird or game fowl including, but not limited to chickens, ducks, turkeys, geese, peacocks, grouse, emu, ostrich…”
We didn’t ask, but we’re hoping that the genesis of Team HOA 5.2 was a, “Fine, but you asked for it,” response to a home owner association diktat that evicted their chickens from their backyard coop. We’ve seen it before. These things are usually the legally binding, passive aggressive moves of a neighbor that don’t want any disturbance from any side of the fence but their own. To that point, chickens do poop and cluck a couple of times a day. This had gone unchecked under previous administrations, but under the stalwart leadership of this HOA board, they didn’t shrink from this pestilence; at least a simple majority of the seven or so serving board members took a stand and eradicated neighborhood chicken sounds once and for all.
Chickens globally, not locally.
Not wanting the structure to go to waste, ever the visionary Team HOA 5.2 leaned into the punch and looked at the shed, not as a chicken coop with the firing pin removed, but as a boat building workshop waiting to be weaponized. This was a structure that, with a lot of work and a little planning, could not just produce a boat to take him to Alaska, but also epoxy fumes and 80-100 decibels of power tools pretty much whenever his HOA President of a downwind neighbor had dinner guests.
Luckily, the R2AK existed to give shape and cover to retribution, and an Angus Sailing Row Cruiser began to take shape one next-door lawn party at a time.
The Angus Sailing Row Cruiser is a proven and well-executed design. Developed by Colin Angus for the R2AK, it’s as much solo adventure as you can pack into 19’ and a homebuild. Rows like a dream, small cabin, balanced rig, and can be set up with an auto pilot (There is at least one video of full-tilt sailing with more attention being paid to a sandwich than the tiller). More than a few have lined up for the R2AK; so far only one has made it all the way. This year, two are taking a swing.
The half of that fleet that is Team HOA 5.2 is the solo effort of Peter O’Donoghue, someone whose adventure resume runs deep with just about every hard sounding thing that we’ve heard of, and a few that we haven’t. He’s climbed mountains, so many mountains: Kilamanjaro, Chilean Patagonia, Mt. Rainier; and when he’s not in an exotic locale, he’s ticking off the trails in the I-90 corridor with weekly trail runs. Last year he logged 120,000 feet of elevation game—no idea how many miles that is, but it’s like four Mount Everests. He even did the Grand Canyon’s R2R2R, which we didn’t even know about, despite the odd similarity. His adventures all started with sailing; Sea Scouts to collegiate sailing, and to this day he continues to fit in sailing trips between all of the mountains. Honestly, just reading his application made us exhausted.
Welcome to the R2AK, Team HOA 5.2. We are hoping that HOA 5.3 bans R2AK-related activity and we can finally have the legal proof that, at least in some neighborhoods, we are as feared as chickens.