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TR2019 Blogs from the Boats

Pata Negra - The Last Leg (and post!)

We’re now mid way between Start Point and Portland Bill with the A2 spinnaker up gybing downwind with our nemesis of Lucy Georgina! They’ve done brilliantly since catching us back up a few days ago and we can’t shake them off, even after a drifting match around Start Point. We can’t figure out how we can get 9 hrs back on them so we believe the victory will be theirs and well deserved. The boat is in clean up mode to try and lower the workload on Andy before the Cowes Dinard race tomorrow morning. We’re down to the snack box and Freeze Dried (fridge empty!) and some have started packing gear. Today the weather is stunning without a cloud in the sky... would be nice to have a little more wind. Rob and Griff have just hoisted the J3 over me whilst I lay on the foredeck typing this! Immigration is hopefully being sorted though we will have to wait for clearance due to having Aussies on board - who’d want to let them back in!!! ;) Scarlett & Alice are working through the options for their weekend before jetting off to catch up on a Yacht Delivery to Italy on a 35m yacht... don’t expect their crew will smell like ours. Early this morning, Alice was woken to the sound of the X files theme tune, blacked out cabin and a really bad imitation of an alien abduction by Andres... topping out the different ways he’s attempted to wake his watch buddy this trip. Their sparring could go on for months if we wanted to carry on for a while. For the sports mad out there... Rob has added a 25 mile Strava segment mid Atlantic if anyone wants to try and beat it... This trip has been a perfect balance of drive to win whilst having fun, telling stories, getting to know each other better and looking after the boat. Clearly missed Giles from being on board but it’s been a blast. A quick thank you to Jens for covering so many of my watches... there’ll be no one to cover for on the solo sailing ambitions! Thanks for reading and and the kind feedback.... hopefully given you a feel of life on board during the Transatlantic 2019 race. Recommend it to anyone (with a few weeks to spare) ? Chris - Pata Negra blogging signing out!

CHARISMA | Day 16 - spirits are still high

 

And sometimes patience pays off. Since yesterday we are sailing with similar wind conditions and are progressing very well to the east. 

Weather
Our situation is we have the core of a low pressure system to the north of us and we have to keep that course until the low vanishes so we can go up north. If we would do now we would end in a low or no wind area what we try to avoid.

Spirit
Spirits are still high on board but the themes of our talks are changing. When we talked earlier more about our jobs and professions the talks now turn to weather situation, family, sail configuration and ETA Cows. 
But still “It’s a long way to, no, not Tipperary, but Cowes”. 

Cheers from CHARISMA, Karl



CHARISMA | Day 15 - tricky job



When I was over in Cheyenne I saw the Super Computer Centre where it is believed they are doing the calculations for the weather forecast we are then receiving. Unfortunately within the last days the forecast did rarely fit the weather we had out here. 

But we do not want to blame them to much as the European model and forecasts did not fit either. We can imagine the job can be tricky with the input data at hand and we in general admire and appreciate the work done and data sent out by you folks. 

But on the other hand we are one of the once who have to live it and those who are getting either wet or stuck so a small complaint may be allowed. Nevertheless my watch is coming up soon so I have to dress up and go out and grab the bull’s horns - I mean I take the helm and go east north east. 

Cheers from CHARISMA, Karl


Blog: www.charisma4sea.de/tr19
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Pata Negra - Lands (End) Ahoy!

Im typing this from the foredeck on my mobile phone instead of the computer for the Satcom as I look out forwards towards lands end. With the very flat Scilly Isles to Starboard and a unfortunate view of Lucy Georgina (good for them!) behind us. Its been fascinating watching the fleet squash up as we enter the English Channel because of the huge high pressure that runs from here to the Azores. Weve had the advantage of advanced routing software but it still cant move a high pressure system out of the way! Focus remains on every 0.1 of boatspeed but there is a relaxed feel on the boat in the Cornish sunshine. Watches have allowed plenty of sleep and with the boat now dry and nearly empty of food, its a civil place with a crew that has really gelled over the last two weeks. At sunrise this morning we were delighted to see a pod of dolphins who were only too keen to entertain as we moved along at 6 knots. Rob is busy now at the chart table as we work our way towards the 4 mile gate at Lands End. Its used for records, but that wont be applicable in our case after the drifting of the last few days. Hopefully well get some tide advantage but Andy has assembled the light kedge anchor if we need it. Not looking forward to pulling that up on a boat of 8 tonnes! Just off to make soup for the last time with baked bread. Dinner is going to be a leftover special and then to freeze dried tomorrow. Feel free to send messages back now were off the Satcomm if you wish. Chris Chris Hanson 07801452205 Sent from a mobile device so may be brief!

TR2019 - Hiro Maru (2019-JUL-08 16:00 UTC)

A quick shout out to all the competitors and their persistence and ingenuity to overcome the many issues we experience being offshore. We all have issues, things don't work as designed or not up to the challenge of being offshore or what the sea has to throw at us. I imagine the crew of Aegir will be the fitest of all of us on the dock, doing all that water making/pumping across the Atlantic. Kudos to you guys, well done. The crew on Pata Negra for overcoming the electrical issues. No doubt others have had issues and been able to press through them. Excited to share a beer together on the dock, this group of Transatlantic Racers is a very special group of sailors and honored to be part of it.

We have a few more days of wind as we arch towards the UK. Have been having satellite communications issues, was able to resolve one of them today, will continue to chip at it and hopefully be going into the English channel with a full deck. If not, may resort to hoisting an iphone up the mast in a ziplock bag in hopes of getting a 3G signal.

Crew is in a groove and mentally getting geared up for the channel and lack of wind that we will face. Spirits are high.

Food stores are starting to also show their relenting to the humid and wet environment. The wonder bread ( which was bought not for its nutritional value but its ability to resist mold ) has begun to show signs it too can't hold up to the environment. The cabin is starting to be more and more a science experiment than proper living quarters. Should have brought some twinkies to see if they could hold up to the harsh environment. Do they make those still?

Chili Rice on the menu this evening, was a crowd pleaser last go around.

Hiro Maru out.

Aloha Race Fans.

We have been riding the 15-25kt winds up the great circle route, gearing up and down as appropriate. Life on board is good as we have been given glimpses of whales, dolphins and some fish who have found themselves on our deck.

Temperatures have dropped as we have moved off the Gulf Stream. Fog is the norm, so visibility has been somewhat limited at times. Below decks there seems to be more space as food stores are being consumed. The crew have developed a "dryness" rating scale given this has been a challenge since day one. While the gradients of dryness have slowly evolved, so too has the mold in my foulies. They have not properly dried since day 1, so now they are becoming a breading ground for mold cultures. Great.

I was spoiled last time I did this race on "Lady B". She had a generator room where one could hang their foulies between watches. Nice, toasty and dry foulies, what a luxury.

I have to admit the water coming out of the water maker is pretty darn good tasting. Have to add some sports drink to it, as the water maker essentially strips out all the minerals etc. Hiro said he filled the tanks while motoring up Long Island sound and making water. Hmmmm. Didn't think much of Long Island Sound water, but it was good.

Have been looking very closely at the weather and tempted to perform some rituals on the foredeck, offering spam to the gods in hopes that high pressure can open a doorway for us to pass through without hindrance. Ceremonies will be begin tomorrow at noon, for those wishing to join.

Today's extracurricular activities included seeing if we could repair our code zero. We kind of knew it was a goner, but thought we should look at it, as we may want to have it in the low winds off the UK. We don't have an infinite sail repair tape, we decided to put her back in the bag let the loft fix her up. Darn.

Fajita's for dinner this evening hit the spot. Hiro has squirreled away food in every corner of the boat, so each day like your birthday, being presented with more M&M's or fruit juice, or last years left over Halloween candy.

Satellite communications has been challenging, intermittent and always slow. Envious of the guys with broadband, feels like we are still using the old acoustic coupler modems.

Oh, geez almost forgot. Emily, Happy Birthday from Krissy.

Hiro Maru out.

TR2019 - Hiro Maru (2019-JUL-09 13:00 UTC)

Just got off the horn with Sean on the Media team. Thought we'd send across a quick posting before my turn on the wheel.

Champagne Sailing are the words for the day. The sun is out, kite is flying, shirts are off and enjoying the dry and consistent breeze. The boat looks like it is owned by the "Beverly Hill Billies", as gear is hanging and strewn all over in hopes of getting dry. The sun is a welcome sight by everyone and a true luxury after days of grey, rain and mist.

The new weather GRIBs are a pleasant sight, giving hope there may be wind for us on the approach and up the channel. Our hope is that we will be crossing the line on the 12th, but then this is offshore racing and anything can happen.

Hiro dug out what was supposed to be frozen Tiramsu bars, ended up being cold slushies but tasted divine. Still lots of last year's halloween candy to go through, food has been excellent throughout the journey. Probably a bit more sugar than most of us are use to, have to show some restraint when walking by the snack bar.

Got to go, my turn to drive.

Hiro Maru out.

Aegir Updte - Land Ho!

Land Ho! We have finally arrived in England to be greeted with gorgeous weather and very little wind! We passed the Isles of Scily, and our first land sighting in almost two weeks, at 9:00 Monday morning and have slowly been making our way up the English Channel over the past 24 hours. 
To everyone's excitement, last night brought us the first cloudless night and incredible stars of the passage following an amazing sunset. We have been sailing with a light headsail and just switched to a Code Zero as we try to beat the tide change up the Channel so we don't have to drop anchor!
While we are all questioning the last time we saw a wave.  
With calm conditions, we  were able to send a few first timers up the mast to look for breeze and even catch sight of a shark from the top of the rig. Despite careful rationing, as we approach fifteen days at sea, we have unfortunately run out of our much appreciated (and highly contested) chocolate supply. As we very slowly make our way towards the Needles, we are praying for a steady breeze and hopeful for a finish tonight.

Caitlin Murphy



Re: Pata Negra - Mirror Mirror on the sea...

Over the last 24 hours, we've had the worst of the high pressure killing our wind and bringing us to a standstill. The evening was beautiful with a fabulous sunset under the clouds, but there was very little wind. For a while we did get up to 9 knots boat speed but by 6am the wind was down to 1 to 2 knots from the West – not ideal for racing. What was more frustrating was watching Lucy Georgina come in on fresh wind and close the gap we had worked so hard to build all the way across the Atlantic.

We now figure we have to gain 5 hours ahead of them if we have any chance of beating them to first place. That's handicap yacht racing though! We saw the SW corner of Ireland and a little glance of the Fastnet Rock in the distance, however we're carefully trying to get South without putting ourselves into the High Pressure again, currently doing between 7 – 9 knots towards Lands End. Because of the lack of wind, yesterday was fairly relaxed with quite a number of crew on the foredeck taking in the sunshine... Modern yachting, with a bluetooth speaker playing relaxing vibes from various mobile phones.

Scarlett returned to the bow in a stressed state later in the evening after she couldn't find her mobile phone but very luckily found it in the spinnaker bag... that could of very easily been hoisted into the Irish Sea! Aladin is currently making apple crumble and with 5 of the crew fast asleep, all's calm. We'll reach 3G signal tomorrow so no doubt that will change. Rob, Mark & Jens have a dash to the airport on Saturday to fly back to Aus & Finland... it will be a very short stop in the UK! ETA still stands at late on Thursday night. Giles' has a fresh team waiting on the dock and hopes to start the Cowes Dinard race early on Friday Morning so we're slowly preparing the boat for a very very quick turnaround.

We hope we can make it (and gain 5 hours on Lucy Georgina at the same time!!!) Some photos from today (the old men on deck, and last night's sunset) for your fun! Chris on Pata Negra (wondering what might be happening in the rest of the world!)

Pata Negra - the mountains below us

Just 60 miles off the coastline of Ireland now and you can feel we are returning to civilisation. I awoke to come on deck to a relatively calm ocean, sun up, 6 knots of wind from the SW but a sky alive with airplanes. Although they are 6 miles above us, we could hear them as they set off on their western travels.

Still not gybed or tacked... we've done a selection of sail changes through the night keeping the polar performance (a target speed system in the boat) as high as possible. Similarly, as we came into the continental shelf and the water depth quickly changed from 4500m deep to 250m deep, an area of sea was alive with about 9 fishing vessels and we've also heard coastguard work taking place on the VHF. If this was land and it went up 4250m in a few miles it would look amazing... just shows its a world we don't really know.

Our battery issues are somewhat better. It seems one of the house batteries was stealing everything from the others and then giving up... we're down to 2 and being careful with power usage but in much better shape now so Andy & I rejoined the watch system last night. With Satcom usage restored, all eyes returned to the tracker and the want to retain the lead. Going to be tough considering the conditions but all want to win.

The routing software wants to take us on a tour around the south of Ireland, but there is so little variance, we're going straight for lands end. Hope it works! Alice & I have just been planning the meals to the end... nice set of clean, empty shelves it looks like. Probably will run out of chocolate tomorrow night which could cause some distress! Aladin kindly made crepes (not pancakes!) for breakfast this morning and he's likely to be asked to do so again as they were extremely good. Griff's going to be disappointed (unless he's got really good vision).

Looks like we're going to pass 25 miles from the Fastnet rock which he was very keen to see... just have to come back and do the race instead. ETA looks like Thursday Night at present... but in the lottery of yacht racing... don't hold your breath!

Chris

Aegir - Day 13 - Making Water

We are racing across the Atlantic Ocean, a vast expanse of water, in fact all we have seen for the past 12 days is water, our boat and the sky. Yet we were devoid of the type of water needed to stay alive; fresh water.  

Our water maker gave up the ghost early in the trip, further investigation revealed that the motherboard had blown up and a subsequent rewiring of the board proved futile as the unit failed to pressurize, part of the process as the unit takes in salt water, desalinates it via pressurization and a series of membranes in order to produce fresh, drinkable water, producing roughly 50 litres per hour.

Roughly 400 miles into our 3300 mile race, it would have been too easy to turn around and head back to land. However being the driven and adventurous crew that we are, we resorted to using our emergency water maker, which involves hand pumping and can make roughly 10 litres per hour.  Take into account there are 14 of us on board, allow 2.5 litres per person per day plus additional stock to fill our water tank, so you start to get the picture that this little pump has become an intricate and critical part of our existence!

Day 1 of manual pumping, conditions were fair, allowing us to drop a bucket over the stern to collect sea water for the process.  
Day 2 and we've picked up speed and the risk of losing a bucket as we collect water is deemed too risky, so some spare hose is commandeered to siphon the sea water into our bucket.
Day 3 and we are not speedy enough for the siphon process to work, so our system gets an upgrade by way of adding a bilge pump and a boat hook for easy access to drop the pick up hose over the transom: rudimentary yet functional!

To make enough water to fill one of our 600ml water bottles requires 6 litres of sea water.  Running the numbers we have collected 3950 litres of sea water to run through our pump to make 395 litres of drinking water.  Which has involved about 121 hours of pumping! 

Yesterday was a monumental day, with 2 days until the end of our race, we stopped pumping, having accumulated enough water in our tank.  There are mixed emotions, relief yet also a sense of loss, as our structured pumping schedule is no longer required, something that had become so integral with our watch system!  All in all, our tiny little Katadyn water maker has saved the day, ensuring we stay in this race and ultimately stay alive!
  
We are all looking forward to drinking water that doesn't have a slightly salty taste to it, swiftly followed by a cheeky beer!
#Katadyn #stayinalive
Abby Ehler


TR2019 - Hiro Maru (2019-JUL-07 22:00 UTC)

Aloha Race Fans.

We have been riding the 15-25kt winds up the great circle route, gearing up and down as appropriate. Life on board is good as we have been given glimpses of whales, dolphins and some fish who have found themselves on our deck.

Temperatures have dropped as we have moved off the Gulf Stream. Fog is the norm, so visibility has been somewhat limited at times. Below decks there seems to be more space as food stores are being consumed. The crew have developed a "dryness" rating scale given this has been a challenge since day one. While the gradients of dryness have slowly evolved, so too has the mold in my foulies. They have not properly dried since day 1, so now they are becoming a breading ground for mold cultures. Great.

I was spoiled last time I did this race on "Lady B". She had a generator room where one could hang their foulies between watches. Nice, toasty and dry foulies, what a luxury.

I have to admit the water coming out of the water maker is pretty darn good tasting. Have to add some sports drink to it, as the water maker essentially strips out all the minerals etc. Hiro said he filled the tanks while motoring up Long Island sound and making water. Hmmmm. Didn't think much of Long Island Sound water, but it was good.

Have been looking very closely at the weather and tempted to perform some rituals on the foredeck, offering spam to the gods in hopes that high pressure can open a doorway for us to pass through without hindrance. Ceremonies will be begin tomorrow at noon, for those wishing to join.

Today's extracurricular activities included seeing if we could repair our code zero. We kind of knew it was a goner, but thought we should look at it, as we may want to have it in the low winds off the UK. We don't have an infinite sail repair tape, we decided to put her back in the bag let the loft fix her up. Darn.

Fajita's for dinner this evening hit the spot. Hiro has squirreled away food in every corner of the boat, so each day like your birthday, being presented with more M&M's or fruit juice, or last years left over Halloween candy.

Satellite communications has been challenging, intermittent and always slow. Envious of the guys with broadband, feels like we are still using the old acoustic coupler modems.

Oh, geez almost forgot. Emily, Happy Birthday from Krissy.

Aegir Update - North Atlantic Drift

The North Atantic Drift.

Just under 300 miles to go and it  looks like we have flat seas and light winds to the finish. The good news is that we now have 10 knots of wind speed and doing 10.5 knots in the direction of Cornwall.

For me, I have seen the calmest seas, that I have seen in a crossing of the Atlantic . I have just quizzed the on watch team.  Clarke Murphy, Ian Budgen and Abby Ehler all concur (we have over 41 crossings between us).  

Only on day three out of 12, did we see any waves more than two meters high and that was in the Gulf Stream (the river of fast moving hot water that is about 50 miles across). Wind speeds have been modest,  we have seen little above 20 knots with a max of 28 knots. The average so far is just eight knots. Wave height less than one metre for 90% of the time.

Why so little wind? High pressure systems as simple as that! After a great first part of the race, working the shifts and  gulf stream, by the time we cleared the east side of the 'ice gate' we copped a ridge of high pressure  directly in our path. We took direct action by heading off to Greenland. Then we had a ridge extending south from Iceland and finally the big high pressure that spread from up from the Azores, which is now due to move north once more.

The high pressure had been on the cards for a week. We envied Teasing Machine and The Kid as they skirted north around the huge 'high' propelled by the winds from the low pressure over Newfoundland, which sadly was too far west to help Aegir, nevertheless spirits are high onboard and the tables are turning.

We are back to up to speed, still pushing as hard as we can.  We have an intriguing final 300 miles of light wind racing. We are even readying our anchor that might see the sea bed in the light winds and strong tides ahead?

Mike Broughton


Pata Negra - Anyone got some batteries?

So on Pata Negra, things on deck have been great, but not so great

below deck. We've had some significant battery / electrical issues

that have put is into battery “survival mode” whilst we try and

diagnose the issue.

This did mean for several hours the crew steering to a handheld GPS

whilst we powered everything off but we're now currently charging two

batteries to keep us going. Boats these days are so dependent on

electronics and electrical capability so when there is a problem, it

hurts – but hopefully we'll get to the finish line irrespective.

Current ETA from the routing is very late Thursday or early Friday.

It seems the high pressure across Southern Ireland really blocks our

path and we expect very little or no wind from Fastnet Rock to Lands

End. Every forecast that is downloaded, you pray that the approaching

depression moves the high out of the way, but no joy. Last few

forecasts seem to be more negative than positive. After spending the

91 Fastnet race drifting around this area in no wind, it can be

painful but lets hope we get some wind to push us through. Currently

we've about 10 knots of wind from the south.

We've also been monitoring when possible the status of the

competition. The faster boats have struggled in the high pressure

ahead and allowed us to catch them, whilst Lucy Georgina catches us on

the approaching depression. This technology, along with Sat Comms has

changed racing considerably and probably drives on the crews harder

through the race... knowing it is all to play for.

A couple of days ago we were contacted by the Tall Ship Columbia on

its way to St Malo, we sadly had to refuse their request of changing

our course so we could take a photo of them, but we had a good

conversation. When we explained we were racing and our current

position, their bridge broke out in applause over the radio – most

encouraging!

We've sailed now nearly the whole way across the Atlantic without a

Tack/Gype and just occasionally changed spinnakers. Will feel strange

to have the boat lean the other way in the days ahead. Least now its

sunny and dry... with the crew spread asleep throughout the boat

rather. Might be limited updates now due to the battery situation,

but hopefully we'll be in 3G range soon.

Chris on Pata Negra

CHARISMA | Day 11 | Light winds


In der milden und trockenen Nacht wird bei aufklarendem Himmel der Wind leicht und variabel. Wir agieren mit gelegentlichen Kreuzschlägen, um die Yacht bei der Kurslinie gen ENE zu halten.


Blick ins Universum
Der Himmel klart auf und zeigt seine Sterne. Auf unserer Steuerbordseite sehen wir das Sternenbild des Skorpions sowie den Jupiter, der als größter Planet unseres Sonnensystems seine Bahn in der Ekliptik zieht und sein Licht im Widerschein auf das Meer wirft.


Blick zum Verklicker
In der Morgendämmerung mühen wir uns bei leichtem variablen Wind. Schließlich dreht er von E-NE rechts auf SE. Mit einer weiteren Wende, nun wieder auf Backbord-Bug können wir unseren Kurs von 070° halten. Zur Mittagszeit setzen wir bei S 3-4 böigen Wind unseren roten Starkwind-Spinnaker, mit dem wir gute Performance erzielen.


Blick nach hinten
Doch nach nicht mal einer Stunde kommt von achtern eine Wetterstörung mit grauen Regenwolken auf. Wir bergen den Spi, Hälsen bei weiter rechtsdrehenden Wind und segeln bei N 3-4 unter Genua II und Großsegel gen ENE. Als das Wetter wieder aufklärt setzen wir den Leichtwind-Spinnaker und segeln bei variablen nördlichen Wind in den Abend.


Blick nach vorne
Mit Einbruch der Dämmerung bergen wir den Spi und dümpeln bei abflauendem, leicht umlaufenden Wind und Regen in die Nacht - wir parken in der Flaute und brauchen Geduld bis wieder Wind aufkommt...


Blog: www.charisma4sea.de/tr19
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Aegir update - Murphy's Law by Liam Murphy


As we continue the journey across the Atlantic, we have been faced with low winds and grey skies. The winds have been on a steady decline for the last few days with some brief puffs. Last night we had a couple of hours at 15 knots, but the wind soon grew light once again. Murphy's Law has dictated that every time we change the chute, occasionally the wind favors the one we just took down. While our pace has slowed significantly since the first half of the race, we are enjoying our time at sea, and there is still plenty of laughter. Due to the fact that the conditions around us have not been lining up with the charts, we sent someone up the mast to look for wind from a better vantage point. This more traditional method for seeking wind has proven successful for the short term as we continue to make our way towards the finish line.

We have seen plenty of wildlife the last three days as we sail through pods of dolphins and whales. It is especially spectacular at night when they are highlighted by the glowing phosphorescence in the water. 

Congratulations to Wizard and Scallywag on their finish, and we hope to see you soon in Cowes.
Liam Murphy


Aegir update - What we miss

What we Miss

We are now getting this feeling of approaching the land but although we are undoubtedly getting closer, looking at the chart every five minutes and counting down the miles.  We also face some strong frustrations that the last few days are stretching , sailing slow in low winds around the huge high pressure that is blocking and slowing our progress. Light winds bring big wind fluctuations and play with our patience and skills to make good progress on the water... 

It is very challenging for our tactician Budgie and especially our navigator Mike Broughton who on top of that lost satellite connection re-setting the computer, with the pressure of the crew to take a decision based on a latest weather updates and wind shifts!

Despite all these little issues I do believe that we are sailing well and the ambiance onboard is still at his best with the whole crew... time for a few old salty stories and jokes around a well deserved cup of coffee or tea prepared by our 'Frenchy' coffee specialist Julien Le Duff!

So here we are, sailing VMG as fast as we can to reach the Lizzard gate, thinking that life is pretty nice out here but looking forward to the arrival in Cowes and planning what we have most missed on the ocean... wine, beer, mobile phones and even Facebook?! Definitely running water!
Mmmmhhh.... Certainly a bit of all but really, not that much... Life is really sweet out here!!!

Youri Loof


Pata Negra - 999 miles to go!

We've just clocked under 1,000 miles to the finish (though we will

have to sail further than that). Mark Griffin's daily ask is “how far

is it to Fastnet Rock?”, so if you ever see him in Australia when he

gets back, don't forget to ask him that! Its 675 miles right now and

on our routing.

Today saw the first sail change for nearly 4 days. As the wind has

dropped from 20knots to 14 knots we've changed up to an A4 kite and

are moving along nicely at 10 knots boat speed. Yesterday saw the

last of the higher winds and with an added swell it was great surfing

conditions. Just as Andreas came on deck, I got my revenge with the

support of Jens' and Andy's grinding and James' trimming we pushed

down 2 waves to reach a new trip high of 21.04 knots in just 22 knots

of wind.... have to love this boat! To get this record with Andreas

watching just added a new level to our “speed sparing”.... we're not

competitive at all!

Last night was truly dark. With this endless cloudy sky the

phosphorescence in the water was great. We were joined by a pod of

dolphins in the night which glow like a salvo of torpedos as they zoom

along besides us... its an amazing sight. Aladin found a selection

of baby shrimp on deck this morning showing exactly where these

sparkles of green come from.

We're now able to dry things out a bit inside the boat and sleep is

being recouped after a few days where we need more than 4 on deck. It

would be great if this current wind holds, but it looks like we will

have a very slow weekend of only 10 knots of wind and Monday looks

very light. Seems the only way to get around this high is to ask

someone to move Ireland and Cornwall out of the way.... (clearly been

drinking the salt water).

Andy's work never stops – he's sorting out the next charter's

requirements, researching which relay is required to replace one

that's failed (we've had some battery charging issues) and he's just

done a full chafe check around the boat. With a very tight

turnaround for the RORC Cowes Dinard race, he wants to make sure its

right... either that or he really wants the Moule Frites when he gets

there.

Alice made a fantastic lunch after her watch on deck and which brought

sail change planning to a standstill when I walked into the cabin

holding one of the tasty wraps... Butternut & Kale Dal with Rice for

dinner. But for now, the music's on deck, the coffee is flowing and

its all smiles.

ETA at Cowes is currently Early Thursday... however who knows what

will happen with this high pressure ahead.

TR2019 - Hiro Maru (2019-JUL-04 18:00 EST)

44 06N 037 01W

Beautiful July 4th, although no fireworks or hotdogs today. Good off the wind sailing all day, in steady 12-20kts of breeze. Isobars compressed creating a channel of wind to follow up the great circle route. We have past the halfway point and that combined with it being Independence Day, we celebrated with Mango ice cream which had been purposely placed next to dry ice to keep it cold and frozen. It worked, what a nice treat.

Water still 20.5 degrees C here in the middle of the Atlantic. Amazing how far the Gulf Stream makes its way out here.

Keeping pedal to the metal,

Hiro Maru out.

Hiro Maru: July 1 16:56

39 41'N 049 51'W

11 kts SOG 9.6 kts BSP Winds at 17kts and building. Low pressure arriving slower than predicted. Boat is moving very nicely, 1 Reef in Main and flying Jib Top. Tonight's dinner and tomorrow's dinner currently being prepared. Second reef going in now.

Hiro Maru out.

Hiro Maru : July 1

39 41'N 049 51'W

+10 kts SOG +9kts BSP Winds at 17kts and building
Low pressure arriving slower than predicted.
Boat is moving very nicely, Reefed main with Jib Top.
Tonight's dinner and tomorrow's dinner currently being prepared.

Hiro Maru out



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