Despite the slow start and nearly a day of very light wind, full sun and shorts and t-shirts, the North Atlantic has delivered the real deal. Over the last 24 hours, we ripped along past the constraints of the ice gates and are now headed for the finish with only tactics to concern us.
Just now, the wind is in the mid 20s, the horizon is a lumpy mess of 2- to 3-meter seas and our boat speed is peaking in the low 30s.
Life on board is wet. It’s wet in the cockpit, it’s wet in the companionway, it’s wet in the galley and it’s wet in our berths. The sounds from the surf crashing over the deck and the whistling from the rudders is incessant.
The violent motion below makes the simpest things impossible. Filling a water bottle makes a mess. Getting a spoon into one’s mouth gets pretty messy. Pressing a button on a touch screen is fraught with error. Typing on a computer, whether for navigation or editing these dispatches is laborious with far more keystrokes wrong than right.
The exhilaration and the competition makes it all worthwhile. Closing in and then blowing on past a full size ship in the dark is an experience that can’t be explained in words or video. The regular updates on positions and speeds keep everyone on board tuned in and as with every yacht in the race, we’re giving everything we have with everything we’ve got.