Wednesday, 24 December 2008

VOR: ERICSSON 3 LEG THREE DAY 6 QFB: received 18.12.08 1519 GMT

by Aksel Magdahl, navigator

It does not take much to make 11 primitive guys happy, just a little jump from 6th to 3rd in the standings. Even Gustav (Gustav Morin MCM), who has a stomach infection, has been seen smiling today!

We basically always positioned ourselves on the preferred side of the different medium sized cloud clusters, which enabled us to play some huge wind shifts through the night yesterday. When we got in touch with Green Dragon, we went just a little further than them before a tack, and slowly passed them sailing in a better shift. It actually gave us most of the distance we have on them now. It was difficult with wind shifts not forecast, but satellite pictures helped a lot in this largest thunderstorm area I have ever seen.

Now the question is: how far north is too far? We can ALMOST sail straight towards the waypoint on port tack, but in the end, it looks like we will end up in the light spot south of the scoring gate. It is very expensive to get north at this stage, but expect us to try to utilise some small shifts to get up on that layline.

There will also be plenty of boat-on-boat tactics going on. We just tacked twice to cover Puma on a small shift. Martin Krite is very angry with me now - more than normal - as tacking seems to have the same effect on him as a red cloth has on a bull! So he has hidden my iPod before he went to sleep after the stacking fest. I guess that the ‘Full Stack Double Tack’ within an hour on his off-watch justifies it a little bit.

Best from E3

Volvo Ocean Race

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