by Ian Walker - skipper
It’s been a tricky 36 hours on the Green Dragon as we have watched faster boats chip away at our lead and pass us to windward. It is easy to lose sight of the fact that it is day 14 and we are in sight of Puma and Ericsson fighting for the lead. We are punching above our weight and enjoying every second.
Now the wind has dropped and freed up a bit and we are no longer in 'stability reaching ' conditions we can feel a bit more confident about our speed. Our speed problem is simple - we have 460kg less lead in our bulb so power reaching and upwind in strong winds it will be difficult. Having said that, we are still learning the boat and the sail combinations and we know we can and will do a better job. We are collecting data all the time and using it to get faster.
Ahead of us now is a day or two of light air before the leaders pick up a cold front. This looks like being a significant feature which will literally launch us across the South Atlantic. It will be a rough ride and we have started preparing the boat for it and will rest up the crew. Everyone is getting on fine although Anthony Merrington (Youngster) incurred the wrath of Justin Slattery when he was called from his bunk for a sail change - he leapt up naked and threw on the first pair of shorts he could find - these were of course Justin’s.
No pants is one thing, but rushing upon the bow to help he got completely hosed from head to foot before returning the shorts to Justin - thanks mate!
You have to watch the Aussies!
Volvo Ocean Race