Sunday, 29 March 2009

VOR: Gone Fishing

David Vera in action on the foredeck of Telefonica Blue. Image copyright Gabriele Olivo/Telefonica Blue/Volvo Ocean Race.

Fishing for Wind

by SailRaceWin

The last few miles are taking an interminably long time for Green Dragon and Telefonica Blue. The wind has died down, so they are only travelling at between 8.5 (Tele' Blue) and 10 knots (Green Dragon) towards Rio.

Latest ETAs are 1945 GMT on Saturday night for Green Dragon and around 0400 GMT on Sunday morning for Telefonica Blue. Both are headed in towards the coast, where the sea breeze might help them along. A night-time land breeze, however, would be fighting the current gradient wind direction.

Green Dragon resort to desperate measures by making a fishing spear, as food runs low on leg 5 of the Volvo Ocean Race, from Qingdao to Rio de Janeiro. Image copyright Guo Chuan/Green Dragon Racing/Volvo Ocean Race.

It looks like Green Dragon's earlier attempts at fishing for food might now be turned to fishing for breeze...

All Alone

by Bouwe Bekking (email sent earlier while Green Dragon was in Stealth Play)

It seems like we are alone on the ocean. The Dragons have gone in stealth mode, we don't know why, as we are safely tucked behind them, but it might get some of their supporters a bit more nervous. With the given the wind direction there is only one course to sail for us and that is straight to Rio, no big buffalo girl possible right now. But the dragons will approach Rio at night time, not the best time of the day, so who knows how much they will slow down.

Just sailed through a couple of big squalls, and unfortunately we missed the big rain, as otherwise we would have taken a shower, the first for some since we passed Fiji, and for me it would be the first one of the trip. But I had a shave, and have been the only one doing this on regular basis; the rest of the guys look like worriers who have been on a mission. It will be stark contrast on arrival.

The shore crew will get a busy time once we arrive, but it is mainly small jobs they have to look after. The rig department will have the biggest job, as every single item will be taken apart and do a full check to see if there aren't any hidden cracks.

So if we are lucky we will arrive somewhere late Saturday afternoon. Hopefully customs goes quick, as three of the team have decided to fly out home, like Tom, flying to Austalia. He will be close to sitting a total of three days in a plane to spend two days back home, but for sure it will be worth it.

Volvo Ocean Race

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