Wednesday, 28 January 2009

VOR: TELEFÓNICA BLUE LEG FOUR DAY 9 QFB received 26.01.09 1930 GMT

Repairing a chafed halyard on Telefonica Blue. Pepe Ribes, Xabier Fernandez and Pablo Arrarte, on leg 4 of the Volvo Ocean Race, from Singapore to Qingdao, China. Image copyright Gabriele Olivo/Telefonica Blue/Volvo Ocean Race.

by Bouwe Bekking

It is worse out here than two days ago. It is not the wind speed, that is manageable, but it is the crazy sea state, brings back memories sailing on the east coast of Tokyo once during a Japan Cup, where out of 75 boats we managed to finish with only three others.

Strange. Normally you forget these kinds of things, but now, all of a sudden, it pops up in my head. So we have to sail really, really slow, so we don’t break the boat. Miles and position have become secondary, unfortunately.

One wave washed our satellite dome off the back of the bus, so can't call anymore and no weather info. Also helmsman getting washed off the wheel frequently. They all wear double harnesses. I made sure about this as a good friend mine, Makoto Namba was lost overboard from a yacht, in this same piece of water

Sleeping is impossible, not only the noise, but as well, worrying for every crash that comes. I said I don't mind sailing upwind, but now, even I have had enough of it.

I have braced myself in the navstation, and will try as best as possible to take care of my back. Daryl (Daryl Wislang/NZL) is doing relatively OK, at least he hasn't been complaining, but maybe because I have investigated having an under 30 bowman replacement ready just in case. I need to do this as it will be a major to get somebody in last minute in China with visas.

Volvo Ocean Race

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