Saturday, 14 February 2009

VOR: ERICSSON 3 LEG FOUR QFB: received 13.02.09 1122 GMT

Fog threatened the in-port race in Qingdao, and is now hampering Ericsson 3 from reaching that city for the start of leg 5. Image copyright Dave Kneale/Volvo Ocean Race.

by Gustav Morin

Foggy and cold

It is foggy both outside and inside. One thing is worse than another.

This morning our navigator Aksel Magdahl had to keep his eyes on the radar all the time so we wouldn’t collide with any ships. Visibility was just couple of hundred metres and ships were suddenly appearing a bit too close.

It is pretty crowded with fishing boats here outside Shanghai and since we were doing 20 to 25 knots of boatspeed it was quite exciting there for a while.

The temperature has dropped 20 degrees in 24 hours. We now have around 10 degrees and the wind has shifted from southerly to almost northerly. We are now sailing upwind again. Slamming and bumping. But so far we haven’t seen more than 30 knots and the sea state is not as dramatic as last time.

What is going to be worse than last time is the cold. It will only get worse from now on. At first I thought it would be pretty nice with some cold air. It would feel like home for a while. And when I spent a couple of hours on deck today I actually kept that opinion.

But now, sitting still down below, the cold is not so nice anymore. You can see the air come out from your mouth and it’s so high in humidity that it seems it doesn’t matter how much clothes you put on. The moisture can still sneak in underneath your layers and make you freeze.

Unfortunately the forecast says that the wind will die out when we get closer to Qingdao. Right now it looks like we won’t make the start in time. We will probably meet the other boats on their way out and we will start a couple of hours behind.
But we are still pretty happy and keeping the hope up. Forecasts have been wrong before.

Ericsson Racing Team

Volvo Ocean Race

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