Saturday, 14 November 2009
Aviva. Image copyright Aviva Ocean Racing.
by Kelly Russell
With the worst of the demanding conditions that have tested the IMOCA Open 60 fleet behind them, Dee Caffari and Brian Thompson, onboard Aviva are relieved to be changing their tactics from survival to racing in the 4800 mile Transat Jacques Vabre.
The dramatic rescue of Seb Josse and Jean François Curzon on board BT, highlighted the severity of the conditions the Open 60 sailors have had to contend with over the past three days. As the northerly group of the fleet passes the Azores they will be expecting more comfortable sailing with useful breezes and warmer temperatures. Caffari and Thompson will use this opportunity to ensure that everything is in order on board Aviva and to turn their focus to racing in an attempt to close the gap on the race leaders.
The 10h00 race ranking on Saturday, 14th November, positioned Dee Caffari and Brian Thompson, onboard Aviva, in seventh place, 190 miles behind race leader Safran.
Dee Caffari and Brian Thompson’s latest diary entry received on 14 November 2009 at 0720 GMT:
“For those that have seen our boats from the dockside, they look pretty big and for those that have taken a look onboard, you realise that much of the 60 feet is cavernous space filled with nothing, sails or water ballast. The reality is we live in a very small area of the yacht, normally centred around the navigation station and the hatch. On Aviva this started a neat minimalist area with everything in its place and a place for everything. Now after a few days bouncing around suffering drama after drama whilst still trying to either race or survive depending what position to the weather you are, this space has turned into a dark tardis.
"We have lost stuff into this tardis maybe forever or at the very least until the next dry comfortable sailing that allows household chores to be done. So I would have loved to have sent you wonderful photographs from our time onboard but unfortunately I last saw the camera when we had breakfast with Groupe Bel at the beginning of the week. We shall keep looking!”
Dee Caffari Racing
Transat Jacques Vabre