Sunday, 19 April 2009

VOR: TELEFÓNICA BLUE LEG SIX DAY 7 QFB: received 17.04.09 2129 GMT

Telefonica Blue, skippered by Bouwe Bekking (NED) are first through the scoring gate of Fernando de Noronha at 19:58:56 GMT 16/04/09, securing 4 points, on of leg 6 of the Volvo Ocean Race, from Rio de Janeiro to Boston. Image copyright Gabriele Olivo/Telefonica Blue/Volvo Ocean Race.

by Tom Addis (navigator)

A key milestone down for us today – reaching and extending in the north east trades.

This means a couple of key potential stumbling blocks are now out of the way, which is a massive relief for us all on board, Fernando and the doldrums ticked off, now its into some simple sailing again.

I’ve been promising the guys Bombaro action (Spanish for fireman with a hose – although probably horribly misspelled by me) for the last few days and that’s what we have now for the next couple of thousand miles if we are lucky – constant spray getting into every crevice. It is the VO70’s way of saying that she is going fast though so it’s all good! I hesitate to call these boats ‘she’, there isn’t much that’s feminine about them. I’d hate to meet the human equivalent in a dark alley!

With Fernando being a waypoint for us and with it being so close to the southern edge of the doldrums, our options on how to get through the ITCZ back into the north were limited but we did about as well as we could expect with the squalls and got to the trades first, which is a massive advantage as from there, you are in much more constant, reliable wind and you should be able to extend.

Well, I must say that it’s gone a tad better than expected but hey, you do what you can do and do what you think is best and let the rest take care of itself – the guys behind seem to be having a tougher time of it than we did.

On with the job at hand, can’t wait to see my beautiful family again in Boston.

Volvo Ocean Race

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