Friday, 20 March 2009

VOR: TELEFÓNICA BLUE LEG FIVE DAY 34 QFB: received 19.03.09 0047 GMT

Telefonica Blue feeling the full force of the Southern Ocean as they approach Cape horn, on leg 5 of the Volvo Ocean Race, from Qingdao to Rio de Janeiro. Image copyright Gabriele Olivo/Telefonica Blue/Volvo Ocean Race.

by Simon Fisher (helmsman)

With only a few hundred miles to go until the Horn, everyone is getting anxious to round and head back into the Atlantic once more. The steady monitoring of the distance to waypoint has continued at an increased pace and I think now anyone would be able to tell you how far it is to go within about 20 miles! That said, our last few hundred miles of the Pacific are proving to be exciting.

As if to show us how small we really are, the might of the Southern Ocean has whipped up 35 knots for us, more rain, more cold and even a little bit of fog too. Despite the cold and the wind though, I was thinking today how lucky we are that we are able to come down here to a place that few really get to see and experience. It was then pointed out to me that not many people would really want to come and put up with this weather, but I feel both privileged and lucky all the same that I have had the opportunity to sail in the Southern Ocean once more... I have to admit though, I will also be very happy as we turn the corner and start to head north to Rio too!

On board all is well, spirits are pretty high although there was a little drama last night - Mike (Michael Pammenter) was feeling very aggrieved for a while as his chocolate bar had been stolen. After many days at sea these things become something of a treat and was feeling very hard done by that someone had robbed him of it.

Luckily though, it was found later in the snack box on the other side of the boat and Mike, once more full of chocolate was happy again. It was however, fairly entertaining to watch Mike cross examining each person as they came on deck to see if they would admit to eating his chocolate!!

Volvo Ocean Race

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