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SKIPPER REPORTS


MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 REPORT

14 APR 2014

We are feeling great - the Pacific was always one of the ones I wanted to tick off – the finish today was fantastic we had a brilliant kite running and the bridge was crystal clear not going under 12 knots of boat speed all day. The trip itself had its ups and downs. Early on I decided to avoid the worst of a low...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 REPORT

14 APR 2014

It feels great to be here, I remember San Francisco very well having come here for the 2009-10 Race, it’s a beautiful city and bay. As we came in under the Golden Gate Bridge with our spinnaker up there was no one around but then two ribs came out to see us – we thought it was probably just locals but it wa...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 28

14 APR 2014

70 miles to go! 70 miles left and we have successfully crossed the largest ocean on earth. I don’t think that has really set in yet, and it probably won’t for a while.  I guess it will happen at different times for different people too. The next time we look at a world map, and see the distance we have...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 27

13 APR 2014

Morning all! Life is looking slightly better as we are fine reaching at speed towards San Francisco. We have a great wind angle and a stiff breeze pulling us along at 12-14 knots. It is definitely time to be arriving. Mission Performance Somewhere in the North Pacific Ocean  ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 27

13 APR 2014

Another day closer to San Francisco! We have been making course to the finish for over 24 hours now. Thank god the wind shifted solidly, which is giving us a more solid ETA of the early on Monday 14 April. It is still upwind, and quite gusty, but we are handling it quite well with a reefed main sail, stay sail and Yank...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 27

13 APR 2014

'All Right'. So we are out of our 48 hour period of Stealth Mode. Did we make any great gains on the competition? Not really, we lost some miles to Mission Performance whilst we made some miles on PSP Logistics. We need to beat Mission Performance over the finish line to get eleventh place whilst we need to beat PSP Lo...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 REPORT

13 APR 2014

We had a couple of very good storms crossing the ocean, but we expected more storms given previous years, and we think the weather was pretty kind to us. The race was very long but the weather conditions were so variable and changed all the time which helped. The weather did a lot of motivating - there was incredible v...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 REPORT

13 APR 2014

It was a long race but it was not as bad as the last time I crossed the Pacific. It was nothing as bad as it could have been. I took the routing a lot further south than most of the boats which kept us out of the worst of the weather. We had a problem early on in the race and we ripped one of our spinnakers which set u...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 REPORT

12 APR 2014

It was very nice to go under the Golden Gate Bridge even though it was dark coming in late at night it was all lit up and very magical. The wind picked up at that moment as well and there was no fog - we had the spinnaker running on the bow, running at about 11 knots, the fastest we had sailed all day so it was beautif...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 26

12 APR 2014

We have just less than 12 miles to go to the Golden Gate Bridge as I type this last blog.  The light airs came in as forecast and we are flying the spinnaker like a ghost and drifting across the calm sea slowly at around 4 or 5 knots, seeking all the speed we can from Heidi. It is now dark and there is low cloud c...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 26

12 APR 2014

Morning all! We now have just over 400 miles to go and we are making great progress. The wind has been freeing off all day and we are currently making good speed directly towards the bridge. Although the boat is now heeled at a reasonable angle, the sea state is relatively calm meaning that the ride isn't too uncomfort...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 26

12 APR 2014

How frustrating is this. We sail over 6,000 miles across the Pacific Ocean, to get 65 miles from the finish to end up struggling to sail in under 3 knots of wind. We were aware of a large patch of light airs around the finish area as the boats ahead of us showed in the schedules. I deliberately shaped our course whilst...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 26

12 APR 2014

As I write this we are 3 hours away from coming out of Stealth Mode. I don’t really expect much change in our position but hopefully we have made a couple of miles up on Jamaica Get All Right and Mission Performance. The last 48 hours have painful in term of course. The wind has been coming from exactly where we ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 26

12 APR 2014

'All Right'. Nothing has really changed in the last 24 hours as we are still heeled over at a 30 degree angle slamming off waves and beating upwind towards San Francisco. That’s exactly what I said in yesterday’s blog and, guess what, nothing’s changed. All right, so we are a little bit closer to San ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 REPORT

11 APR 2014

It feels amazing to be in San Francisco. I am really proud of the guys, it’s been a really long race – it feels like we have been racing since Singapore. It was an amazing race in so many ways, the fog when we left Qingdao the low round the south of Japan, the next low that tracked quite far south and tacti...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 REPORT

11 APR 2014

It’s great to be here in San Francisco for the second time in the Clipper Race, I came here in the last race and we were doing 25 knots under the Golden Gate Bridge. This time it was a little different when we got there so it’s great to have arrived. Qingdao being our home port we were very busy with the gr...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 25

11 APR 2014

Morning all! It’s life at an angle again as we make reasonable progress to windward. The wind is coming almost directly from the east, which is pretty much the direction we need to get to. Of course why wouldn't the wind be coming from exactly where we need to get to towards the end of a long race and after a par...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 25

11 APR 2014

It’s going to be another test of patience as the crew face our final hurdle on the approach to San Francisco. With only 150 miles to go it feels tantalisingly close.  We are surfing along in the high teens; the noises on deck on this clear night are joyful, whoops and cheers. Yet a patch of light airs around...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 25

11 APR 2014

Good morning, I have the feeling we are on the home stretch. It has been an annoying 24 hours for me as I saw our course being pushed further and further to the south, as we waited for the wind to back allowing us to sail towards the finish. Well this afternoon the wind eventually backed and built in strength, we are n...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 25

11 APR 2014

As we are in Stealth Mode we will keep this one brief today. After much juggling with sail combinations we have finally settled on one that seems to work for 80 percent of the varying conditions we are facing. When I say varying I mean annoying. There is nothing fun about sailing the portion of a race upwind. I think m...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 25

11 APR 2014

Hello world! As I write this we are 120 miles away from the finish it's 04:35 UTC or 21:37 local time. We changed the clock for the last time this afternoon and are now matching San Francisco summer time. If all goes well this will be my last blog for this race, but looking at the previous boats coming in it looks like...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 25

11 APR 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Spirits are high as we make our final approach after what has been an epic leg. We've had everything from 0-80 knots of breeze from every point of the compass, sun, rain and hail, more squalls than you could shake a stick at, waves the size of houses and all the dr...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 25

11 APR 2014

'All Right'. Nothing has really changed in the last 24 hours as we are still heeled over at a 30 degree angle slamming off waves and beating upwind towards San Francisco. We are a good 30 degrees off course but within the next 24 hours the wind should start backing and we will get lifted onto the course for the finish ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 24

10 APR 2014

"Computer Crashing" Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 25. Well I just wrote a nice long blog and the computer crashed. I am afraid therefore that this one will be short as the wind is dying and I want to get to San Francisco. It looks like the wind hole is here as forecast and unfortunately it is fore...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 24

10 APR 2014

We are all counting down the miles until we get into San Francisco now on Qingdao after losing in the game of dices and not having the wind fill in as fast as the other yachts. All we could do was watch them sail away and cover over 100 miles DTF (Distance to Finish) from us when we were only 20 miles away from GREAT B...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 24

10 APR 2014

Morning all! It's been a particularly painful 24 hours in the North Pacific Ocean. We have had very little wind and made pretty rubbish progress for the last 24 hours. We found ourselves in a large wind hole; thankfully we have managed to climb out of said hole and are wholly back on track making reasonable progress to...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 24

10 APR 2014

We are now out of Stealth Mode and after two days concealing our whereabouts (from the paparazzi) we have emerged a little closer to the teams ahead but without any gains or losses in the fleet positions.  Good credit to Old Pulteney for averaging 11.2 knots during their Stealth Mode and outrunning us and the wind...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 24

10 APR 2014

Captains blog, sailing day 163. We are just less than 40 miles from the finish line and I am expecting us to be mighty close to the line as we approach blog o'clock so here I am in the navigation station early, writing what I seriously hope to be the final blog of Leg 6.  Bearing in mind that our proximity to the ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 24

10 APR 2014

Good morning, well it has been a very frustrating 24 hours on board Team Garmin. Yesterday evening the weather was as forecasted and I felt confident that we had avoided the worst of the light wind patch as a freshening north easterly breeze was allowing us to sail nicely towards the finish. I was just about to change ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 24

10 APR 2014

Last night the wind seemed to stiffen a little, making it pretty tough under the Yankee 1.  So, a sail change was in order for the first job of the day. Although the wind has straightened a little we find ourselves in a sailors long life battle with direction. There are 32 points in a compass, each representing a ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 24

10 APR 2014

Hello world! We are closer every day, although it seems like we are going slower and slower. After being stuck for the night in another dreadful wind hole, we had the boat moving again this morning. However, not without any consequences because skipper Sean McCarter and his crew on Derry~Londonderry ~Doire sailed aroun...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 24

10 APR 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! With 340 miles to go, it feels like we should almost be able to see the coast, in reality, it's the about the same distance as sailing half way around Ireland! We're not worried at the moment though with a solid 10 knots of boat speed pointed right at the Golden Ga...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 24

10 APR 2014

'All Right'. We are still living life at a 30 degree angle with the occasional slam off a wave whilst we beat upwind towards San Francisco. This continues to make life difficult for everyone on board but in particular for the mothers who have to battle on regardless to feed 13 hungry crew three times a day. As some mot...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 REPORT

10 APR 2014

We were lucky in the sense that we didn't have too much of a hard time but for the last 2 days we have had incredibly light winds which was the final part of the challenge.  We made a very early commitment to going south which helped our climb up the leaderboard. It was the first time we came out of Stealth Mode b...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 REPORT

10 APR 2014

We have had a very good race with Eric and Henri Lloyd, its always great to have someone to spar against. It's no fun if you are 500 miles ahead. It's a real sense of achievement. Coming out of the windhole yesterday I just couldn't see how we would claw it back. They managed to pull 15 miles on us by running inshore, ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

"So close and yet so far" Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 24. Well we have found the wind hole. I believe the yachts around us have also found the wind hole. It will really be a question of who gets the new wind first. I was hoping it would have filled in already but alas we are struggling along at ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

That was an unpleasant wind hole we had to get through. Watching the fleet race up to us as we sat there with no wind, you have to be a bit fatalistic as there is nothing that can be done about it. After a 5,000 mile race a restart with 300 miles to go is not what we needed. We've just got to get on with it and do the ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

A few days ago I was taking about how we were looking for points of a knot to make pace with the lead yachts. Today we are just looking for wind. This is the first time on this leg we have sat with no wind and no boat speed. So it’s a bit more like ‘dices’ today, we have to roll ours as we have been f...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

Morning all! Conditions have really eased up over the last 24 hours as we move out of a low pressure dominated area into a high pressure area. Up until a few hours ago we were making good progress with boat speeds at around the same speed as the wind. We are now sat in just a few knots of breeze but still averaging abo...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

So we did it! Team Switzerland got naked in the North Pacific Ocean, all in the name of charity! It was a freezing grey kind of day today, the wind just freshening with an icy misty chill.  There was much hubbub in the girl’s corridor down below as we gathered in bikinis, boots and towels for warmth (it&rsqu...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

Well what can I say... I have been awake for I am not sure how long now but I do know that the last time I woke up was more than 24 hours ago. Every time I have attempted to grab some sleep the breeze has shifted, or gone, or come back so we change the sail plan, the boat seems settled and then just as I have thought i...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

So the wind hole did indeed arrive, pretty much after I finished writing my blog yesterday and has been lingering around until relatively recently when the wind finally started to fill in a little. Whether this is the beginning of the end of the hole or just a little teaser only time will tell, but we are all crossing ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

Good morning it has been another good 24 hours on Team Garmin with both watches working hard through the night to keep the yacht moving in some light fickle winds. It was with some relief that I saw a 50 degree wind shift, the graph function on the Garmin plotter showing it very clearly, as we tightened all our sails a...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

Just over 1000 miles to go! It seems we are just around the corner; so close but so far. We are starting to feel the effects of the ‘high’ (weather system) moving in behind us. We have breeze, and we are moving... but nothing like the rest of the fleet did when they were in this area. It is sunny, very sunn...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

Hello world! Day 24 and just under 500 miles to go, we are really on the final countdown at the moment although last night it seemed that we would never make it to San Francisco. We got ourselves properly stuck in a wind hole that lasted more than 24 hours. Finally this morning at day break we got the 'Navigator' our n...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! After a pedestrian night on the progress front, the breeze filled in enough at dawn to get us moving at a slow but respectable 6 knots. This was better than what the forecast predicted so we weren't complaining but nonetheless glad to see a solid 20 knots by luncht...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 23

09 APR 2014

'All Right'. It's back to living life on an angle of 30 degrees as we beat upwind towards San Francisco, not quite what we were expecting as this is meant to be a mainly downwind leg. We have 950 miles to go to the finish line under the Golden Gate Bridge and according to the forecasts it is unlikely the wind is going ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 23 – OCEAN SPRINT APOLOGY

09 APR 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans... Like I said in a previous blog... "You don't score until you score". How apt I was. By now the news will have broken that as OneDLL was in contravention of the sailing instructions for Race 10. In particular, with regard to the reporting of a vessels position when crossing the "Ocean Sprint ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 22

08 APR 2014

Well it appears that the time is nearly nigh for our wind hole, we have been sailing along in beautiful conditions for most of the last 24 hours, but with about 80 miles to go until the time of the  minimum wind forecast in my route, the wind is definitely starting to die making for rather slow progress. I was def...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 22

08 APR 2014

Well not to jinx it or anything, it certainly hasn't been the North Pacific I was expecting! So far we have had two nights I would call rough, and one of those was our second night in the East China Sea! The large high pressure system building to the south of us is moving very fast. We have seen the breeze slacken off ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 22

08 APR 2014

Hello World! So, close, but yet so far away. We were on the right road for setting a good time in the Ocean Sprint doing 12-16 knots, but ... Yesterday was a day of blasting down waves in gusts up to 50 knots, pelting us through the night, this morning it came all to a staggering halt, like a fuse had blown and the whi...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 22

08 APR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Today we were treated to blue sky and sun for what feels like the first time in weeks. It's amazing the effect it had on the mood aboard; everyone was upbeat (more-so than usual that is), hatches that have been firmly shut were opened, damp clothes finally dried an...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 22

08 APR 2014

'All Right'. Unfortunately it looks like the weather forecast is pretty much correct with its prediction. The wind has gradually dropped and veered over the course of the last 24 hours and it is set to drop even further. At the moment we are still making reasonable progress under white sails on a beam reach but over th...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 22

08 APR 2014

We are in the Ocean Sprint and making better progress than a day or two ago, which is not hard but as we are in Stealth Mode that is all I am going to tell you about that! How do you measure a successful leg - do you measure it in extra points picked up (like Scoring Gates), do you measure it in fleet position or do yo...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 22

08 APR 2014

"A pot dodging good time" Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 23. As I write this we are just over 400 miles from the big red bridge. Today has been another brilliant day of sailing with the sun out. We started out with 30 knots of wind from the south. Then the cloud built as the dying front threat...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 22

08 APR 2014

A day in Stealth Mode passes much like any other day. I did find myself sleeping for a good portion of it after a tiring Ocean Sprint. As I said in my last blog I thought we did very well given the conditions we had but as expected the boats or one boat in particular had a faster run of it. Well done to OneDLL for find...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 22

08 APR 2014

The wind is now starting to drop as the wind band we have been sailing in for the last few days moves off and dies out. We have been lucky to be able to sail in this band for the last few days giving us good speeds that have helped the miles ticket down. We are now under 400 miles to run before San Francisco and the cr...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 22

08 APR 2014

Morning all! It's been a great 24 hours on board Mission Performance. The wind has been on the slightly fickle side but we have been making good progress. Over the lunchtime meeting today we discussed what the weather is expected to do over the next few days in great detail, primarily how best we might look at getting ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 22

08 APR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 162. We are now getting tantalisingly close to San Francisco having just broken the 400 mile mark, but it’s all still to play for.  I am hoping that Eric has decided to use Stealth Mode to make a radical move back to the west, but sadly I doubt it! I think that the time we l...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

After the antics with the weather fronts and domestic appliances over the weekend, we are now unfortunately a whole weather system separated from the main fleet ahead.  This means the weather patterns we will see are going to be very different from them over the next few days.  Different could be a good or a ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 22. We have 671 miles to go to San Francisco. Well, tomorrow we will change the clocks for the final time to get onto San Francisco time. This means that we have crossed 8 time zones and the International Date Line. Today has been an epic day with 30 knots of wind fro...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

To be certain, this has not been the North Pacific I expected. I have this tingling feeling on my face that is no other but sunburn. Last night was a beautiful starry night and today was a full blue sky. This is definitely not what I was sold. I know we're not there yet but I think we're over the coldest part and my fl...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

In Formula 1 they spend millions of pounds to try and shave a second off their lap time. Here on Qingdao we are trying to find points of a knot which we have been under now for a few days, every time the new schedule comes in we work out the average boat speeds for the other yachts. Although we are slower, it’s n...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

Morning all! Today has been a bit of a better day with the wind filling in from the North West overnight last night. We have been making a great course and speed ever since. We had the remnants of a front pass over us earlier today and it was absolutely text book, with a very clear line between the low and wet rain clo...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

The past 24 hours have continued to see us make very respectable progress. We have not long completed the Ocean Sprint, posting a time 22 hours and 39 minutes.  This means our average speed for the duration of the sprint was 12.1 knots.  Looking at the weather forecast, currently it looks as if the front five...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

Clear and starry all night and blue all day, now that has got to be a rare thing indeed to say about the sky in the North Pacific, what is more, it has been really rather warm, another word not often associated with these parts. So all in all a great 24 hours, then add to that the last 24 hours were exactly the same. N...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

Well it’s still raining! I cannot remember how many days that it has been raining for, but I know that we are all fed up with it now. We had a fairly windy night with us ending up beating into up to 30 knots of wind but unusually the sea state did not build in accordance with the wind strength which allowed us to...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

Another fairly uneventful day for us here. The wind is very erratic at the moment, shifting up to 50 degrees, varying in strength from 10 to 25 knots. All of this makes it hard to settle on a sail plan that works for the varying conditions and wind strength. We are starting to tire as a crew, so the least amount of sai...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

Hello World! We are still under the cloak of the Stealth Mode until noon UTC today. We are riding the front currently and I can tell you, it's a rough ride! Somewhere tonight this should roll over and leave us with lighter winds that we have to negotiate all the way till San Francisco. It has been a fast ride and hopef...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Another day in 'The Greyness'. It's no wonder nobody lives out here...it would drive you to depression! Maybe I'm exaggerating, one of the crew did shout out it was sunny from deck, I glanced up from the hatch and a better description might have been that it got a ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 21

07 APR 2014

'All Right'. The weather isn't being too kind to us at the moment. Don't get me wrong we have plenty of wind and from well behind the beam, in fact that is the problem because it is dead astern. This leaves us with two choices sail south east or sail north east when fact we want to go due east. For the moment we are go...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

"Remember you don't score until you score" Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 21. Well we have passed the 1,000 miles to go mark with approximately 954 miles to go as I write this. We also did a whopping 149 miles in the last 12 hours. We are making good progress under white sails with a strong southe...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

We have begun the Ocean Sprint. We have also passed the 900 mile to finish mark, so really we will be sprinting for the next 900 miles. If not with speed then at least with intent. Today has been a beautiful day on deck. The sun has been out all day and there has been very little water over the deck, just enough that y...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

Good news - I found the sweets. The bad news - the navigation station needs an extra clean today – In other news - We had to put a reef in and change a headsail this morning as the wind built, and now on more a close haul than a reach. We still have ok boat speeds and are holding against the lead yachts but not s...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

Morning all! After a reasonable night and day of sailing we are now sat in a windless area making at best, 0.5 knots boat speed. I am hopeful that we will see the wind pick up soon as the weather systems move further eastwards so that we can be on our way again. If this keeps up for too much longer it will really confo...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

So you are wondering how life is in the hoover (see yesterday’s blog)?  Well the fluff continued overnight with boat speed and progress up and down constantly.  In a final cruel twist what wind we do have is now coming from the south east so giving us headwinds, meaning we can't point directly towards S...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

We have had some quieter times over the last 24 hours. We managed to keep some pace over night with the white sails, but as the wind eased off it was inevitable that "Bruce" (lightweight kite) would once show his face to come and play. Since then we have made some progress toward the goal with a slowly building breeze ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

Is it fog?  No.  Is it mist?  No.  Is it rain?  No.  Is it drizzle? No...its Fomirizzle! The current prevailing conditions that we have been experiencing recently have led me to invent this new form of weather terminology. Simon Rowell (the Clipper Race's weather guru) - you heard it here ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

Indecision has to be the word of the day, both on behalf of the wind and on behalf of the crew of the good ship GREAT Britain. We had a lovely night’s sailing with the wind repeatedly veering enough to set us off scurrying around the deck in preparation for hoisting the spinnaker, only for it to back enough for i...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

Day 21 and we are in Stealth Mode, you know what that means. That means our boat is not moving for 48 hours and after that it makes a giant leap forward. So we are not telling you where we are, what we are planning to do and so on, but have I got some other facts for you. So far our average speed on this race is 9.9 kn...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! After an extremely poor day progress-wise yesterday, the breeze filled in again with a vengeance this morning. We currently have 35 to 40 knots blasting us right at the Golden Gate Bridge at speeds of 10 to 15 knots. As I type we have exactly 1,085 miles to go and ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

'All Right'. I was going to start my blog today with '25 shades of blue' because that is how it had been all day with the sea and sky being lots of different hues of blue and no North Pacific grey in sight anywhere. That was until the warm front of the approaching weather system caught us up and everything turned to gr...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 20

06 APR 2014

Morning, I am writing this at 45 degrees as we are currently beating into 30 to 40 knots of wind, with very heavy and cold rain which is making conditions on deck very unpleasant. We have had nearly every sail flying in the last 24 hours. The only ones we haven't seen are the windseeker, and the heavyweight spinnaker w...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

"How many lives does a Phoenix have?" Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 20. We are approximately 1,229 miles from San Francisco and have had quite an eventful couple of hours. The wind veered and died yesterday. We put up "The Phoenix” (the medium weight spinnaker) and were going along for hours...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

Conditions have changed a bit since this morning. The fog has lifted into rain clouds, and the breeze has built out of the south. It is possible that this front that we have been trying to outrun for the last couple days may be catching up with us. We've made some good miles in the last day and currently have 1,150 mil...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

Most of the last day has seen me sat in the navigation station looking at weather files, GRIBS and streamline plots, basically every bit of information sent to us by Simon Rowell, the Clipper Race meteorologist, to try and work out a tactical plan for the last 1,000 miles into San Francisco and regain lost miles. I am ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

Morning all! It's been a great 24 hours of sailing. The wind has been rather shifty though so the guys have been working hard swapping between spinnaker and Yankee as the wind moves forward and aft of the beam. I think literally every watch there has been at least one change. All the hoists and drops have been going ve...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

Its' been a damp and depressing start to our day (your evening for the European followers) as the wind has died off completely but the drizzle and misty conditions continue.  The poor spinnaker is hanging wet and bedraggled down from the masthead, there is not a breath to fill it.  Boat speed reads “0.0...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

Another day rolls by in the mighty North Pacific Ocean as we continue to go about our business of racing a yacht across it. So here I am sitting in the navigation station, it’s just gone 19:00 Invest Africa time and I am scratching my head wondering what to write about today.  It's been almost three weeks si...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

So, our conservative sail plan overnight in the fog has cost us dearly, with our arch nemesis Henri Lloyd managing to take 20 miles out of our lead, leaving us with a slender and ever diminishing 10 mile distance to finish difference as I write. Thankfully though, visibility has improved throughout the afternoon and we...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

Good morning, we are still making good progress towards San Francisco, although early today we did manage to sail into a very light patch of wind, which slowed us down for several hours. The weather forecast did show an area of lighter winds ahead but we felt that we should just be behind them as they moved north eastw...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

Is a heavyweight kite bullet proof? The answer is probably... But I can tell you what it is not proof... A fouled sheet on a gybe in 10 knots of wind with a perfectly timed 30 knot squall. This happened on board PSP Logistics last night - the tackline let go by itself immediately after the gybe so we did not have...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

Hello World! Wow, another stunning 24 hours has passed, while the 'Navigator’ (the nickname for our yacht) ploughed through the waves of the North Pacific Ocean. Even though the visibility in the daytime is reduced by fog and haze, the night still gave us a bit of moonlight for a while. We were able to sail ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! It has been a frustrating day of light winds and sloppy seas. We peeled to our lightweight kite this morning and were going nicely for an hour or so before the wind backed so much that we had to drop and hoist our Yankee 1. We then made reasonable progress for anot...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 19

05 APR 2014

'All Right'. We dropped the spinnaker just before dark last night and ran through the night with full mainsail, staysail and Yankee 2 headsail. There was no particular reason for dropping the spinnaker though, at the time, we were reaching the upper end of its limit with regard to wind strength. There was nothing in th...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

"Ode to the moon" Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 19. Well we have approximately 1,472 miles to go to San Francisco. Today has been rather pleasant with the wind slowly veering and getting weaker. As it does, the sea state is calming down, however the sky remains fifty shades of grey. We are hoping ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

We have passed the 1,500 mile to finish mark, and the great circle course is now 090 degrees so not long until we'll finally be turning south. The biggest change really is that the visibility has dropped down to very poor in fog. The nice sun we had yesterday has abandoned us and been replaced with that fine mist that ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

The first line of this report must go to Rich Gould, skipper of Invest Africa for yesterday’s Gareth vs machine, nicked from his report the day before. It was a slow day. After gaining on the lead yachts a few days back, we have been unable to get Qingdao back into a groove and have lost over 15 miles to most of ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

Morning all! It’s been a pretty relaxed 24 hours of sailing out here. The wind and sea have calmed down a lot giving us easy conditions with the wind just on the beam for most of the day. The wind has now shifted far enough aft to hoist the spinnaker which is now pulling us along nicely. With only a few days left...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

The weather is being particularly tricky looking ahead.  There are wind holes, cold fronts, windless high pressures and windy low pressures spring up out of nowhere that all need negotiating to get to San Francisco. Not to mention trying to out-smart and out-sail the other boats in the fleet – phew! It's goi...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 158. Another relatively straight forwards day aboard the good ship Invest Africa.  We are still making good speed to the east, the sea state has calmed, although there is still a sizable swell rolling and the wind is still with us, for now. The high pressure off the US west coast ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

Oh no, the grey has returned! After a gorgeous moonlit night of sailing, the Pacific slowly started to turn all grey again this morning as a dense area of advection fog slowly descended upon us. This isn’t the beautiful kind of fog that you see rolling off the cliffs as you walk along Beachy Head in Eastbourne ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

Good morning from a very grey and wet North Pacific. We have had another productive 24 hours on Team Garmin, seeing a respectable amount of miles taken off the distance to finish.It has been an interesting time with the weather and especially the wind giving us a nasty surprise. We have been reaching nicely for a coupl...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

It has been very plain sailing for the last 24 hours. We stuck to our plan of white sails overnight to give the crew and myself a little break, and re-hoisted the kite in a very smooth fashion this morning. We try to plan our evolutions around the watch change as it is much easier to haul the big sails in and out of th...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

Hello World! A day the same as the previous one, wind about the same, a touch lighter, so another sail change (our one per day quota). The other slight difference is that the fog is starting to enclose on us. another 1,550 milesto go, before the bridge will loom above us the 'Navigator' (the nickname for our boat) is s...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Another reasonably quiet day with breeze dropping off a little and going aft enough for us to get a kite up. Looks like the next day or so will be calm enough for us to catch up on some maintenance. There is at least one broken batten in the mainsail and several ot...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 18

04 APR 2014

'All Right'. Well we managed to get away from our 'Groundhog Day' and did something different today. We put the medium weight spinnaker up and after a slow start it is now pulling us along very nicely in a moderate south westerly wind and flat sea. In the early hours of this morning the wind died and veered as the warm...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 18. As I write this we have approximately 1,746 miles to go to San Francisco. We have had another great day of sailing with steady winds from the south, south west. We must be getting closer as we are not at the apex of our great circle route. It is a long apex but so...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

Another day down on our journey to San Francisco. The wind has hardly changed these past 24 hours. We continue to plug away and count down the passing miles. We now have about 1,725 miles to go. Although we are making good miles, nobody wants to jinx us by discussing possible arrival dates. We seem to be slipping behin...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

This will be day 157 of sending a report for me and sometimes the hardest job of the day after many months at sea is finding something to talk about when writing a skipper report each day. Life has been easy for the last few days with two sails, and reaching in good speeds, so not a lot for a skipper to do. This means ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

Morning all! It's been a rather wet and dreary 24 hours on board Mission Performance. We have had persistent rain and fog all day and all of last night meaning that on deck is a very wet place to be! The wind is pretty good and even though we can only fly our storm jib off the front of the boat at the moment, we are go...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

The sky today has been covered with a dense grey haze.  Looking out of the back of the boat as the afternoon was drawing in, the low sunlight circled through the haze with a definite yellow glow.  I guess when the sea and sky are grey and all the landscape is devoid of colour, you can truly see the colour of ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 157. As far as sailing goes it has been quite straight forward.  We have managed to be far enough east to stay ahead of the front associated with the next low pressure system so the wind has been stable in both strength and direction. The team have been doing a good job at keeping...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

Today I am a little lacking in inspiration as things are pretty much the same as they were yesterday at this time. That I suppose is a good thing really, it means the wind has remained constant, in fact whilst on that subject, we have had some of the most constant wind that we have seen all race. There was one point la...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

Morning, I am happy to say that there is not much to report on Team Garmin except that we have a fairly straightforward 24 hours sailing which has seen us make good progress towards the finish. We have been reaching with the Yankee staysail and mainsail in a steady 25 to 35 knots of breeze and have held a steady course...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

Last night saw the wind increase to a breezy 30 knots from the south. We were running our heavyweight kite into the night and it became a little sporty to say the least with the new wind direction crossing the established seaway. Around 22:00 last night I got myself up on deck to take over the helm, and although the wi...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

Hello World! What a gorgeous day it has been. We are skimming the high pressure area on a constant isobaric pressure, giving us constant wind from the same direction with a nice sea state. After sailing through the night under a slight conservative sail plan we enlarged our sail area this morning and kept the pace goin...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

'All Right'. Our 'Groundhog Day' lived up to its name and absolutely nothing new or exciting happened that was different from the day before... or was it the day after? The wind stayed much the same with a few ups and downs, the sail plan stayed much the same with a couple of small tweaks and the course and speed staye...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 17

03 APR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Another good day with stable conditions and high averages. We've had reef one in and out a couple of times and eventually did a headsail change after lunch but other than that it's been plain sailing. We were discussing the procedure for the headsail change during ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

"North Pacific Champagne sailing... records will be broken" Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 17. To clear this up we left on the 16 March and it is now 2 April. We also had the 30 March twice as we crossed the International Date Line...as such it has to be 17 days at sea! As I write this we are doing...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

It has been another pretty uneventful day. I was able to use the morning to catch up on some sleep as the last few days have been pretty busy and I reckon my sleep debt was reaching its limit. The conditions have moderated a lot, especially the sea state, making for much gentler sailing. As I was still pretty tired and...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

Good news here on Qingdao 1. I have found my hat which I have owned for six years. Lucky I found it as I put up my hot water bottle as a reward to find it.2. Its jacket spud day Speeds and heading have been up and down over the day, last night we saw the wind easy off for us to change headsails and get a better angle a...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

Morning all! The weather has calmed down considerably from the rather strong conditions that we had the other night. We had a brilliant sail with full main and Yankee 2 but the wind gradually started to build again meaning that we had to change down to our storm jib in lieu of our Yankee 3 as a weak front passed overhe...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

The Pacific is a vast ocean, bordered by countries with extremes of culture and climates.  These can present a variety of potential hazards for a seagoing yacht as I found out today.  The Sat C system, that sends the boats oceanic weather information and navigation warnings, piped up with a series of mes...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 156. A little more sail has been the order of the day.  We are now power reaching towards San Francisco.  It's certainly a welcome change after the past few days of running deep on the breeze.  Invest Africa is now happily surfing along towards the Golden Gate Bridge.&nb...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

So after all the excitement of the previous 24 hours and the thankfully safe recovery of Andrew Taylor back onto Derry~Londonderry~Doire, I am very pleased to report an exceptionally uneventful 24 hours! We have had excellent sailing wind which has gradually backed meaning that overnight we could finally start pointing...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

Good morning. We have been making good progress on Team Garmin. Yesterday we were waiting for the wind to start shifting so we could gybe on to starboard tack and start reaching due east. Using the Garmin Plotter detailed graph function, (I am really starting to love this bit of equipment), we could see the wind swingi...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

What a cracking night of sailing! Just after lunch we were storming along with the lightweight kite up, kicking along at 12 to 15 knots constantly. We switched out our Yankee 1 for a smaller headsail whilst flying the kite in preparation for a bit of wind from the impending warm front chasing us down. The plan was to t...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

Hello World! Another day closer to San Francisco, 2,100 miles to go and we are already on day 17 from our race from Qingdao. Last night has been a pleasant night with the wind lightening a bit. This made us change the sails to have maximum canvas. We lost a bit on our nearest competitors, but will have the benefit...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! I am happy to report that all is well aboard and things are back to normal, well, as far as normal goes with 17 people on a 70-foot yacht racing through the North Pacific! I was pleasantly surprised to see the smiling face of round the world crew member Andrew Tayl...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 16

02 APR 2014

'All Right'. Well we are still storming along with 25 to 30 knots of wind just behind the beam. The occasional wave climbs on board and gives everyone a good dousing but otherwise the sea state is quite reasonable. The boat feels well balanced and fast so all is good. Occasionally it feels like we could do with changin...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

 "Sailing in the Sun?!"  Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 18... I think. it gets a bit confusing with this extra day! Well the conditions have moderated and we are currently approximately 2,313 miles from San Francisco.  Well after the previous day’s events we have been taking it...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

Not too much to report today, which after yesterday and the events on the other yachts it is nice to have little to report. We are very glad to hear that everyone on Derry~Londonderry~Doire is ok after their ordeal that we never hope to experience.  The wind has moderated a lot but there was still the odd squall t...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

At home, sometimes all we talk about is the weather and it’s the same here. The weather has abated and winds are around the 25 knot mark but the sea state is still too much for us to hold a kite as the swell knocks us back and forth. So we are making the best speeds we can under headsails and mainsail but are goi...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

Morning all! It turned out to be a very eventful night with storm force winds, mountainous seas, and rather a lot of excitement on deck including one of the crew going over the side of the boat, thankfully tethered on.  As always everything that goes wrong happens at once, I was downstairs at the navigation statio...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

I'm sure the other skippers are spinning some tall April fools tales in their blogs today, I'm going to enjoy reading them!  But in today's blog I wanted to look at a human element, without which most of us wouldn't be here.  I'm talking about those who have inspired us.  The people who entered our lives...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 155.  Considering that we are north of 40 degrees in the Pacific Ocean we have had a relatively sedate 24 hours aboard Invest Africa.  The only change to the sail plan has been shaking out the second reef, and course wise we did gybe last night when we though the shift had ar...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

Well wouldn’t you know it, after sailing 3,755 miles we just had Invest Africa cross 0.6 miles (1.1km) in front of us. It really is quite amazing after all these miles of varying weather, different sail plans and quite different routes, that we find ourselves in the middle of the North Pacific, in 5,000 metres of...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

Good morning, it has been a very pleasant day on board Team Garmin, with some nice downwind sailing conditions, with blue skies and some sun.  We have been making steady progress since the last storm passed and have been enjoying sailing in 20 to 30 knots of wind trying to get the best boat speed without hoisting ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

 We finally managed it - at the halfway point of the race, we sailed 24 hours under kite. I must say, when you have one kite that is 100 per cent functional, you do sail more conservatively with it at night. However, yesterday after noon and last night was magical sailing,sunny blue skies and a clear starry night....

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

'All Right'. The weather over the last 24 hours has panned out pretty much exactly as forecasted and we were able to carry full mainsail and Yankee 1 headsail overnight with the wind just behind the beam. The sea state was a little too confused to risk putting up our medium weight spinnaker particularly with the night ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 15: REPORT ON MAN OVERBOARD INCI...

01 APR 2014

Sean has not filed his normal daily report, with the Clipper Race's permission; he has had his hands rather full. Sean and the team did an incredible job yesterday and the Clipper Race does not underestimate the impact of dealing with such an incident will have on everyone.  Andrew Taylor is making good progress; ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

Here is an uipdated skipper report from Sean McCarter. After a dramatic day yesterday I am both happy and relieved to report that all the crew are healthy and in good spirits.  Yesterday morning the breeze was easing off after a fairly heavy night and we decided to unhank the Yankee 2 from the foredeck and hank on...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

Hello World! Well, where to start today? First of all congratulations to Derry~Londonderry~Doire for recovering their Man Overboard in immensely harsh conditions. I hope Andrew will recover well and soon, Also for OneDLL to come to the rescue back into the storm… True seamanship!  Yesterday I got the shock ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 15

01 APR 2014

Hello World! Well, where to start today? First of all congratulations to Derry~Londonderry~Doire for recovering their Man Overboard in immensely harsh conditions. I hope Andrew will recover well and soon, Also for OneDLL to come to the rescue back into the storm… True seamanship! Yesterday I got the shock of my ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 14

31 MAR 2014

This will be a bit of a short blog I am afraid as we have had a pretty full on 24 hours. After the front finally passed yesterday, the long awaited north westerly airflow arrived and boy did it pack a punch, for much of the night we were running with a tiny sail plan and 50 knots of average wind, with regular gusts to ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 14

31 MAR 2014

Morning all. Well after a night of heavy winds and very confused sea we final were able to take down the storm jib  and put up the Yankee 3, which has served us well as the wind came further aft we shook out a reef and have  been sailing comfortably downwind in 30 to 40 knots of breeze. The sea state surprisi...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 14

31 MAR 2014

Last night the attempt to fly the kite was abandoned just after dusk. We had a cracking afternoon, constantly surfing the boat from 14 to 15 knots, with some really extended surfs that seemed to last forever! However, the wind just started to creep around to the north west sometime from the west, north west it had been...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 14

31 MAR 2014

Hello World !  What an epic night. As the low came over yesterday, we sailed through the night making great boat speed, even so that we broke the boat speed record with 28.6 knots.  We belted through the night and had some great sailing, after a few hours the weather lightened a touch and in the morning we we...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 14

31 MAR 2014

'All Right'. The midnight UTC position update from the Race Viewer revealed that the leading eight yachts have now crossed the International Date Line and are back in the western hemisphere. This also means that as I sit and write this blog at 04:30 UTC on the 31 March for those eight yachts in the lead it is 04:30 UTC...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 14

31 MAR 2014

"A day to remember..."Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 16 - or is that day 15 all over again? We crossed the International Date Line shortly after breakfast, meaning that we are finally back in the western hemisphere and what is sure is that this is one Groundhog Day that none of us will fo...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 14

31 MAR 2014

Well that was more excitement than I needed. I had just sat down to write this blog in a nice 25 knots of wind, then bam - 60 knots and we were on our side with a lot of shaking going on. We managed to get the boat to bear away but we've still got too much canvas up and we're tearing off downwind. All hands on deck and...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 14

31 MAR 2014

What a 24 hours it’s been. After being a little too far north the eye of the low passed over us giving us very little wind for a few hours before going more to the west and building fast. Within a few hours we were under reefed mainsail and powering along at 20 plus knots hitting 30 a few times. As night fell it ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 14

31 MAR 2014

Morning all! Well what a ride it's turned out to be. We made absolutely stonking progress last night in some pretty 'sporty' conditions as a good friend of the race, Mark Burkes would say. The wind has been hanging around the 40 to 50 knot mark for a good few hours now and as the seas have been building, the driving ha...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 14

31 MAR 2014

Today is an unusual day as this morning was tomorrow and now it is yesterday.  We have travelled back in time a day as we have crossed the International Date Line and entered the Western Hemisphere again.  The degrees of longitude reduce as we count our way down to London and Race Finish. Yesterday’s be...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 14

31 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 153. Yesterday’s tomorrow today!  As I write this we are about 50 miles from the International Date Line.  Oh no wait...that was erm...today’s, wait I mean yesterday’s blog so that even though today is yesterday - erm...today is tomorrow so it must be sailin...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

Waiting, waiting, for a front that never seems to come. We reduced sail overnight expecting some weather to arrive. It did not and we lost many miles by going slow. The wind is still out of the south so the front has yet to pass through.  I have become impatient for its arrival and frustrated by this hesitancy to ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

We are still waiting for this low system to pass over us by now the GRIB files we have say we will be in 35 knots winds from the north west, not south east 10 knots like we currently have so our boat speeds have slowed down and we can’t make the course we would like.   However the light winds have given...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

Morning all! Finally we are moving at a respectable pace again, the wind has continued to free off and we are now storming along in 35 knots with the wind just aft of the beam. Almost the perfect point of sail, quite manageable and giving us a speed averaging 14 knots. I have been doing some reflecting on my decision t...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 153.  Yesterday’s tomorrow today!  As I write this we are about 50 miles from the International Date Line.  Avid Race Viewer followers may remember despite all our best efforts, during Race 2, we were the final boat in the fleet to cross the equator to the southern...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

Rain and wind are definitely the words of the day, received in copious quantities for the last 24 hours. With our routing taking us so close to the centre of the low pressure, the cold front is not all that well defined and it has been rather difficult to tell if and when it actually passed over us. We have definitely ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

Morning from a very wet and wild North Pacific. It has been a very strange 24 hours, yesterday we were reaching nicely with the Yankee 2, staysail and the mainsail being reefed appropriately. Yesterday evening we saw the wind build so a hasty drop of the Yankee 2 and we hoisted the Yankee 3 in a southerly breeze, gusti...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

As predicted, we were able to hoist our kite at day break today, which is great news after a fairly slow 30 odd hours of variable, changeable weather that was always threatening to blow up fierce. So safety prevailed for that period. This also meant, that we can’t compete for the Scoring Gate as we have 15...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

Hello World! This blog may look a little different from the previous ones as I am writing this in sections while my memory is still fresh. It's only two hours after submitting yesterday’s blog and a lot has happened already. I left you with the note that I had to go on deck for a head sail change, which we h...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

"All Dressed Up With Nowhere to Go"  Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 15. Well we have definitely done more miles than there are left to go. As I type this, there are 2782 miles on the great circle route to San Francisco. We did 235 miles in the last 24 hours, which considering the wind holes w...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!  Well we prepared for the worst last night and I must admit to feeling a little hard-done-by. Instead of 70 knot gusts and hail, we had lighter than average wind and rain, lots and lots of rain.  The annoying thing is that we went slow all night waiting t...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

'All Right'. I'm not too sure what kind of night the boats further to the north and east had but we had a brilliant night’s sailing - one of the best I would say! As forecast, the wind and sea state started building quickly yesterday afternoon and by nightfall we were prepped with our storm sail plan in place. ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10, DAY 13

30 MAR 2014

Sorry for my belated blog today folks, you will see why when you read on but firstly though, happy Mothering Sunday to all the Team Switzerland mothers out there! At lunchtime I was thinking that 'Cyclone Chippie' had been a bit of a let down.  After a night pelting along under reduced canvas waiti...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans welcome to sailing day 14. We currently have approximately 3021 miles to go till San Francisco. Our 24 hour run was 261 miles. These sorts of runs are amazing when we think back to beating up the coast of Papua New Guinea, VMG (Velocity Made Good or speed in the right direction) is nearly alway...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

Well we pushed pretty hard yet Invest Africa held us off until the end, crossing the Scoring Gate 21 minutes ahead of us. Well done to them. We are now taking it a bit easy, getting the boat and crew ready and rested for the next big blow expected in a day or so.  I'm not a fan of these night time, all hands on de...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

Morning all! Well it has been a painful 24 hours watching the rest of the fleet strap the jet packs on and disappear towards the sunset. As I have mentioned previously, it should be worth it in the long run for a couple of reasons.  It's looking like we will be avoiding the strongest of the front as it is now to t...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

Rain, rain and more rain. I am getting more wet sat in the navigation station than on deck. The weather has been good to us so far with winds round 25 knots and being able to make good speeds towards San Francisco. Last night, we were rocking along under heavy weight kite and speed in the 20 knots plus still until nigh...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

I'll start by saying that it's been anything but an uneventful 24 hours on the grey Pacific and the feature item promised yesterday will just have to wait until Monday at this rate.  Firstly we had a blast to the Scoring Gate last night in 30 to 35 knots of wind blowing from behind, shooting us along at great spee...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 152.  Well what a 24 hours it has been.  As all you avid Race Viewer followers will have spotted, last night (or lunch time back in the UK) we were successful at being the first boat through the Scoring Gate, just managing to squeeze through, 21 minutes ahead of Henri Lloyd.&...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

The grey, wet and windy Pacific that we all expected has finally arrived and it is most unwelcome! I suppose that we can count ourselves lucky having made it nearly half way across in such pleasant weather so far, but none the less, it is still an unwelcome arrival.  We spent most of the afternoon and night power ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

Good morning from a very wet Pacific. We have been fine reaching in some variable wind and this morning’s watch saw the mainsail go from 3rd reef to full main and back again within an hour, they also had to do a couple of pretty hard head sail changes. We have a smaller team for this leg but now that a couple of ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

Well, well, the big front was a total let down on our behalf. We were all geared up for an epic battle and it fizzled on us. I think we were too far north in hindsight, pretty much at the centre of the low when it passed us, meaning we had some pretty light and variable conditions over night. We saw the wind directio...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

Hello World!  This will be a short one today as we are about to change sails. We have had good progress for the last 24 hours with mostly the same sail setting give or take a reef and we held our position according to the other boats. Round the world crew member, Kate Hepworth has finally managed to get the sewing...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!  We finally managed to punch through the warm front last night and after an hour spent wallowing in a very confused sea-state, picked up the strong southerlies we were looking for. The position reports since then have been a lot more cheery as we aren't postin...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 12

29 MAR 2014

'All Right'. Rain, rain and more rain. That was the order of the day throughout most of yesterday and last night along with squally wind conditions. As a result we kept up a conservative sail plan never being quite sure what the wind was going to do. This morning the rain cleared away, and the wind died, leaving a sl...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

"Lucky in the Low"  Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 13. Well we have done 2504 miles since leaving Qingdao and have approximately 3292 miles to the finish. We are currently in Stealth Mode so I won’t be talking too much about tactics. Let’s just say we intend to go as fast as we can...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

It was another long tiring night. We ended up sailing the night with the spinnaker down as it was such a dark night and after a protracted spinnaker drop, the team was exhausted. It is not an easy decision to go slow but you've got to take a long term outlook and not risk the crew or gear for short term gains. As it ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

Well the wind has filled back in and just in time. We lost a lot of miles to the group to our south and we ended up in the middle after coming out of Stealth Mode to hide the fact that we took the dive south to get out of the headwinds from this low. The weather has still been good to us, with only a little rain and ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

Morning all! As expected we have slipped down the leaderboard today. We were caught in very fickle and light winds overnight which lasted a little more than we anticipated. The wind has filled in today though and we have been making reasonable progress on a flat sea and with brilliant sunshine taking some of the chill ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

As I sit at the chart table sipping coffee from my last remaining battle scared “Switzerland” mug, I'm reading through the other boat blogs from yesterday and the word “uneventful” appears a lot (for those who didn't break a kite).  Staring out at the grey skies that have replaced the blue ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 151.  Everything was going well, so so well....We had a good breeze, every schedule was showing good gains, and we were still running fast under full main sail and Mr Medium kite, all was well in Invest Africa land.  We were running quite deep in order to regain a little nort...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

Well we finally escaped our wind hole yesterday, after about six hours of very slow progress. According to the forecast, the wind hole we found ourselves in should have been positioned a good 30 miles north of where we were and we should have been merrily cruising along in 15 knots of breeze, but alas, the weather fo...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

Well this is starting to feel a bit familiar, we are currently reaching with as much white sail up as we dare, and still hitting surfs of over 20 knots, but looking ahead at the weather information sent daily to all the fleet I am starting to feel a little apprehensive about the weather the fleet will experience. It lo...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

I think I left off yesterday with tales of ‘kitemares’, and Legs 5, 6, 7 and 8 crew member Mike Valli  going aloft.  Well, after that, I couldn’t in all good faith trust the main halyard we spotted fraying would be strong enough to hold throughout the night. We had a break in the weather, me...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

Hello World! We are steaming along nicely, the wind build overnight leading us to change from Yankee 1 to Yankee 2, while it was gusting 36 knots, so straight after we added a double reef, by daybreak the weather lightened and we shook the reefs out. During the day, we have been yo-yoing with the sails, but the wind ha...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!  As the breeze veered yesterday evening, we dropped the kite and switched to white sails. Considering our close angle to the wind, it was a pleasant sail last night, mainly due to a flat sea and steady 16 knot breeze. Unfortunately the wind and sea have been b...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 11

28 MAR 2014

'All Right'. The champagne sailing conditions are over for the moment. The beautiful sunny weather and blue skies have been replaced with thick grey cloud and heavy rain. The wind has increased from a pleasant 20 knots from just behind the beam to a slightly more feisty 30 knots, gusting to 40 knots. Still we aren't ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

"Flapping before the storm"  Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 12. We have covered 2311 miles and have 3454 miles to go until San Francisco. Not a great daily run yesterday in terms of distance to finish. The reason being we are currently flapping in the lull before the storm. We currently have...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

I'm not sure if it is just the lack of sleep that days are blurring from one to the next, but I am finding it difficult to recollect what happened in the previous 24 hours. I know we were becalmed for a while but not for as long as I had feared and we are moving again in a light breeze. Invest Africa had the better of ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

Sad to report not a lot has happened that is newsworthy. Wind has been light overnight and from the west making it hard for the crew to keep the good heading that we need and we’ve not covered as many miles as we may have liked over this time. We are now just waiting for this low to come and give us better wind...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

Morning all! It's been a fairly easy 24 hours on board Mission Performance. The wind has been light, the sea flat, and the sun has been shining. We have been making reasonable progress despite the light winds, our speed over the ground often exceeding the wind speed by a good few knots! I think the tables will turn now...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

The wind eventually freed enough to hoist the kite last night and the progress has been good with a slight drop in the wind this morning.  This gave us a few moments to hoist the sail repair team and bosuns up the rig to inspect some sail damage and do a rig check.  The wind is picking back up again after l...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

OK, so for the eagle eyed amongst you, you will have noticed that we have now popped out of Stealth Mode and you can probably figure out what we were trying to do. With the forecast showing a large wind hole developing, followed by headwinds, we took the decision to throw away our lead and head back south t...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

Good morning, well it has been another steady 24 hours on board Team Garmin as we have seen the wind become progressively lighter, we are currently struggling to keep the boat moving in under 5 knots of breeze. We have spent most of the morning following every shift in the wind direction and changing from the ultra-li...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

After a most annoying night of wind that is supposed to be here that wasn’t, we finally have it.  The last 24 hours have been up and down, and very tiring for the crew. After crossing swords with Jamaica Get All Right yesterday, we had to continue on a northerly gybe as the wind mysteriously filled in from t...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

Hello World! We might have been taking it easy a bit in the run up to this arriving low. Every ocean has its own pattern and this one is no different, so after a few days on white sails only and losing some miles on the boats in front of us, we regained our energy and are ready for new action. For the last two days w...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!  It's been another fairly quiet and uneventful 24 hours. The only strange thing appears to be our speedo; it's changed from reading only in double figures, to now where it reads in single figures. Apparently this is normal for the wind speeds we've got but I m...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

'All Right'. In yesterday's blog I wrote about how we were flying along under full mainsail and heavyweight spinnaker and all was good on board. Well within five minutes of hitting the email send button, all was not good on Jamaica Get All Right. The weather conditions were getting a little feisty and I was just thin...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 10

27 MAR 2014

Captains blog, sailing day 150. Well I hope you are all as pleased as we are on board with where we have reappeared after our 48 hour stint in secret squirrel Stealth Mode. If memory serves me correctly this is the first ever time that Stealth Mode has hidden a climb up the leaderboard for us. I think that every tim...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

"Wrapping around the North Pacific."  Rosie Gosling  Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 11. Well we have covered 1,940 miles since we left Qingdao eleven days ago and have 3577 miles to go. The crew have really got into the swing of things. So far we have been blessed with a speedy passage wi...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

What a bleary eyed team we were when the sun rose this morning. Yesterday was a brilliant spinnaker run that led into the night. A band of cloud and rain moved in and turned the night totally dark. From then till dawn we hardly rested. We doused the kite in a squall and began reaching under Yankee.  That should ha...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

Morning all! What a difference a day makes, yesterday at this time we were power reaching under kite with speeds up to and over 20 knots and now we are sat in 8 knots of wind, only just about managing to keep the spinnaker filled. I had a tough decision to make early this morning, as I am sure some of the other skipper...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

It’s all about who can get south of this coming low in the next few days and we’re keeping a good track of its course. Too far south and you will be  in lighter wind until the system heads north, where you will then experience headwinds for about 12 hours before it moves off.  We are a little too ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

Romping along in a steady 20 to 25 knots on the beam, sun clear blue skies and a following swell.  What is not to like about the Pacific today!  Last night was a bit wet. A monster squall sat overhead for two out of the three night watches and gave us wind in the 30 to 40 knots for most of that time, pro...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 149. Holy Moly! We are absolutely, totally flying along.  It’s currently 19:30 IVT (Invest Africa time - 10:30 UTC 25.03.14) and since leaving London I have never started write the blog this far ahead of the required time of 06:00 UTC, but the past few hours sailing hav...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

Another thankfully uneventful 24 hours have passed on the good ship GREAT Britain as we continue our cloak and dagger antics in the North Pacific. As you will have noticed, we continued our Stealth Mode for a further 24 hours so I am sorry to say you will have to wait until the midnight position report t...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

Well, I think the crew on Team Garmin are getting a little fed up with my decision to sail conservatively with continual calls to hoist the spinnaker, but with the sea state and wind shifting and gusting so much I am not feeling confident enough to risk hoisting it. I introduced the crew to the poled out headsail plan ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!  The past 24 hours have been a bit of a Groundhog Day but in a good way; great breeze, perfect heading and high speeds. We have covered another 265 miles with relative ease and are currently under 500 miles from the Scoring Gate. It is still a long way to...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

'All Right'. Progress had been fast and furious in the last 24 hours, holding full mainsail and heavyweight spinnaker in up to 30 knots of true wind. Due to our heading being pretty much due east rather than north east, our distance made towards the finish line has not been particularly brilliant but we have covered ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

Hello World! Day 11 on our trip from Qingdao to San Francisco and we are making good progress under almost constant winds from the west, south west. The sun is out and the temperature on deck is reasonably pleasant. Last night saw us sailing through some more active weather with rain, gusts and wind turning 180 degrees...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 9

26 MAR 2014

Hello all! Well our magic run came to a fizzle last night. It was getting a little tasty for the kite to keep going into the hours of darkness, so we choose to strike the kite before dusk. The crew had an amazing sail up until then, constant speeds of 15 to 22 knots, absolutely powering along. However, the sea state wa...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 10. The sunglasses are still out and dry suits are staying in the wet locker. It's another day of champagne sailing for ‘Big Blue’.  Last night, ‘Phoenix’, our new medium weight kite, received the kite equivalent of a hazing ceremony with ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

We'll take it as long as it lasts. These are pretty amazing sailing conditions, much better than we could have hoped for. I'm sure the North Pacific has some rough weather in store for us but until then we'll soak up this fast downwind ride. The wind shifting into the south west has warmed things up incredibly compared...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

Well we’ve had a few days of not being able to get weather info or send or receive emails after a lightning hit us on Friday night. Gladly, no one was hurt apart from Qingdao itself.  The bolt hit the windward side which turned to dust and it travelled down the cable to the Nexus instruments, then jumped to ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

Morning all! It's been a pretty eventful 24 hours, including numerous kite changes, a tack line snapping at just the right moment and not to mention a fresh pair of socks for skipper! The wind has been up and down from 15 to 35 knots while backing from the west north west to the south west over the last 16 hours or so,...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

It's been getting decidedly greyer and dicier today after a gloriously clear night in a good stiff following breeze.  Sailing doesn't come much better!  The kite lasted the night but today its back to white sails as the breeze has picked up.  Last night was our first night of flying the kite with the new...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 148.  Well we have gone in to secret squirrel mode so I can’t really tell you too much about what we are up to as that might give the game away. Before anyone gets too excited though I would just like to confirm that we have not decided to activate Stealth Mode in order...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

For those eagle eyed amongst you, you will notice that last night we slipped into Stealth Mode, now this can mean one of two things, either I was bored on deck and we thought it would be a good idea to throw it into the mix to make life seem more exciting as we went all cloak and dagger or that the news that the 'virtu...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

It is warm, the sun is out and the wind is strong and of good direction. We are making great speed east under our heavy weight kite after we encountered a little wrapped this morning. It unfolded itself, but in the process, four little tears also appeared.  Having a smaller crew at the moment, we planned the evolu...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

It has been another fairly uneventful 24 hours on Team Garmin. We have been sailing steadily and making good progress towards the finish. This morning at sunrise we saw the wind drop and the sea state ease a little, after checking the graph function on the Garmin plotter which gives a good indication of the trend the w...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

Hello World! Racing day 8, sailing day 10, 1885 miles passed under the keel since Qingdao. 3900 miles to go till the Golden Gate Bridge. It seems we slipped behind a touch last night as we are now 20 miles behind Henri Lloyd and Switzerland is ahead of us as well and visible on AIS (Automatic Identification System). ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

Good morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!  Another big day yesterday, putting away a further 270 miles towards San Francisco. At this rate we'll be there in no time! Unfortunately this wind will only hold for another 36 hours or so then we'll get the changing wind speeds and directions associated with...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 8

25 MAR 2014

'All Right'. In the first few hours after we recommenced racing yesterday progress was very slow with a sloppy sea and a light headwind coming from exactly the direction we wanted to go in. With the updated forecast came the good news that the wind would slowly veer and build over the course of the next few hours. This...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 7

24 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 9. Champagne, that’s the conditions we have right now. The sun is out, the wind is steady and we are making good progress. See, sailors don't always complain about the weather. We currently have "The Phoenix" (medium weight kite) pulling us along nicely. It took...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 7

24 MAR 2014

Morning all! After spending the night mostly on the breeze, the hard work has paid off as the wind has freed off to a broad reach, and we are powering along at 14 knots average boat speed along our route. We passed a couple of waypoints overnight and at each one, we are adding a bit more east to our course. Although we...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 7

24 MAR 2014

Japan is now long gone and we are well and truly in the Pacific Ocean. No land between here and the other side, just three weeks of deep ocean depressions, rain, storms, waves, grey and cold. Hang on then, why is the sun streaming through my navigation station hatch, why does the sea look blue, the clouds are small and...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 7

24 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 147. Things have been relatively straight forward since yesterday. The breeze has been stable in both strength and direction, the night sky clear and filled with stars and currently the sun is shining upon us, which means either the old saying of 'the sun only shines on the righte...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 7

24 MAR 2014

I just went on deck and requested some inspiration from the on watch as to what I might write about in my skipper's report today and two things came straight back at me. The first was sunshine and the second was related to a bird. So I will start with the sunshine. Fairly self-explanatory, but somewhat unexpected is th...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 7

24 MAR 2014

It has been a quite uneventful 24 hours on Team Garmin, which has been quite welcome. We have been sailing close hauled or fine reaching and maintaining a steady boat speed though did have a couple of quite violent squalls come through overnight, which saw the wind speed jump from 15 to 40 knots, keeping myself an...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 7

24 MAR 2014

We had a ball last night, a great afternoon sailing in building conditions. We hoisted the kite at lunch and were screaming along at consistent speeds of 15 to 16 knots before a building breeze. By night fall, around dinner time, the wind was gusting to high 20's, touching 30 knots. I thought about leaving the ki...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 7

24 MAR 2014

Hello World! Today is a good day, sunshine, reaching wind conditions with nice strength, smooth swelly ocean and a goal to get in the front of Henri Lloyd who are just under 6 miles ahead of us. The tunes are out and smiling faces all around, spring is in the air, although the air is still quite crisp. Coming from the ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 7

24 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! All is well aboard as we speed into the North Pacific proper. We have put 265 miles under our keel since this time yesterday which compared to the last Leg, seemed effortless.  The crew are recovering well but we are still having to carefully manage our sail c...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 7

24 MAR 2014

'All Right'. It's been a pretty fraught and difficult 48 hours since we suspended racing to medevac round the world crew Mick Wood ashore. However, we are now back on the race track, having recommenced racing at 23:46 UTC last night, and Mick is safely ashore and receiving the treatment he needs in Tokyo. The whole cre...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 7

24 MAR 2014

We've been in visual contact with Old Pulteney since this morning, and it is nice to have another vessel in sight to spur you on. It has been a nice relaxing day of white sail reaching, making decent progress towards the finish. The sun has been out and only an occasional wave breaks over the deck. An easy day is all f...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 6

23 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 8. Well we are back in the wind...  Last night we saw the wind go to the south east. We initially got the wind seeker up to make the most of the conditions. Then we changed to ‘Phoenix’ (our medium weight kite). Unfortunately we did not have Phoenix u...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 6

23 MAR 2014

Just back from on deck after a sail change. We've been close to changing several times this morning but every time we are about to, the wind would decrease again. As it now takes the whole team to do most manoeuvres, we try and do them at watch change if possible, to avoid waking the off watch up. If you get it wrong, ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 6

23 MAR 2014

Morning all! We've really seen it all this race, from perfect power reaching conditions, to gale force winds to wind holes, and now the old favourite beating to windward has been added to the mix. We currently have a stiff sailing breeze on the nose with a moderate swell breaking over the deck. It's not all bad though ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 6

23 MAR 2014

The good news is that despite the weather, which is continuing to be badly behaved, I have had the opportunity for a little more sleep, not that that is necessarily a good thing...  During a three hour patch of steady wind strength last night, I managed to get some good shut eye but the wind direction shifted arou...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 6

23 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 146.  It’s been a really good night aboard the good ship Invest Africa after a frustrating afternoon, waiting for wind.  The breeze that filled in just as the blog was sent yesterday was merely teasing us. It arrived and stayed long enough to tempt us into hoisting a ki...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 6

23 MAR 2014

We are moving again, hooray! So after spending what felt like an eternity gently bobbing around, drifting with the Kuroshio (Black Snake) Current, early this morning the wind finally started to fill and we were finally off sailing in the right direction again with reasonable boat speed.  This was long overdue and ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 6

23 MAR 2014

Good morning, we have spent the last 24 hours trying to avoid the wind hole that has affected most of the fleet, I always ask as many crew as possible to get involved with understanding the weather, and we came up with a plan between us to hopefully keep the boat sailing. Unfortunately as is normally the case, the actu...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 6

23 MAR 2014

Well, sunshine is the order of the day indeed...and not much wind. It has been an up and down all evening. Up to 20 knots, down to 2 knots, Yankee 1 up, Yankee 1 down, windseeker up, windseeker down, medium weight kite up, medium weight kite down...  As frustrating as it were, we did make about 60 mile in 6 hours,...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 6

23 MAR 2014

Hello World!! Racing day 6, sailing day 8. While you are enjoying your Sunday breakfast (any way you like it), we are already half a Sunday ahead, sailing in a nice breeze with reefed mainsail, staysail and Yankee 2, the Old Pulteney ‘Navigator’ is well powered up and we are sailing just off a close haul, w...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10, DAY 6

23 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Another frustrating night drifting was offset firstly by the Kiroshio current which pushed us along at a sedate but useful 2 to 3 knots and, secondly, by great conditions today. We are now on course in steady breeze with a blue sky averaging a very respectable 12.5...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 5

22 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans! Welcome to sailing day 7.  I hope you are having a good weekend. Well its bang or bust here! Only a few hours ago we had over 40 knots across the deck. Now we have 6 knots at a peak and 3 in a lull.  The crew and I are very thankful for the reprieve but we are obviously nervous as to...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 5

22 MAR 2014

Becalmed again, yet with a residual rough sea state the whole boat is being constantly shaken. On the plus side, the sun is out and we're able to dry out on deck after a wet day yesterday. Feeling the warmth of the sun on one's face is wonderfully rejuvenating, almost as much as sleep.  It's hard to tell how long ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 5

22 MAR 2014

Morning all! The last 24 hours could not have been more diverse with regards to weather conditions. A few hours ago we were broad reaching in 45 knots of wind, surfing in the high teens, and now we are sat in 4 knots of wind, trying to coax boat speed out of our sails. This morning was quite spectacular, we passed in b...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 5

22 MAR 2014

So it’s currently me vs Mother Nature and I know who's winning because I will need sleep at some stage!  I managed to crawl in to my bunk four times in the night but the longest I actually slept was 15 minutes so I have the sleep patterns of a solo sailor right now.  It's the wind again; it's up and do...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 5

22 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 145:  Too much, wrong direction, not enough.  As sailors we are rarely 100% happy with the wind!  For the past couple of days the breeze has been plentiful, if a little forward of the beam and perhaps a tad more than necessary at times. Now frustratingly we find our...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 5

22 MAR 2014

40 knots to 2 knots in less than an hour, that’s the treat the weather gods had in store for us this morning! After making good progress overnight, the weather started to become increasingly fickle as we came through the last of the Japanese Islands before we were treated to an amazing lightning show, accompanie...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 5

22 MAR 2014

Morning everyone, well Team Garmin has eventually cleared what remained of its heavyweight spinnaker off the forestays. It took the crew and myself all day to clear the remains of the spinnaker off the forestays, using ingenuity and a very sharp knife, and it was very hard work as the wind was still gusting to over 50 ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 5

22 MAR 2014

What a lovely day the North Pacific is putting on for us. The temperature is bearable and the sun is out, but we just need to come to some arrangement concerning the wind. Sometimes there is some, sometimes there is not. Sometimes it is kite worthy, most of the time it isn’t. It is a skipper’s most annoyi...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 5

22 MAR 2014

Hello World!! What an epic 24 hours we’ve had! Remember that I finished my blog yesterday with the words, 'we might do a sail change soon.' Well we did. Straight after lunch we hoisted the staysail and the Yankee 2, because the breeze was dying. The rest of the afternoon we had a great sailing day, with perfect...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 5

22 MAR 2014

'All Right'. We did well overnight taking miles out of a lot of the fleet despite strong gusty winds and a very tricky sea state. However at 03:35 UTC this morning, we suspended racing to change course towards Yokohoma, Japan to put ashore round the world crew member Mick Wood who is ill. Mick has not been on top for...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 6. Well we have been getting a kicking again. The wind was almost always at the 40 knots last night and sometimes in the 50's. Now this is one thing when you are running with it but we are trying to beam reach in it. Added to this is the fact that the sea state is as ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

The sun is out and the wind has moderated so it has turned out to be a nice day. Last night was a different matter with the Kuroshio Current kicking up a pretty nasty sea state and winds gusting into the high forties. We made good progress early on but after a good start, it was all about depowering and slowing the b...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

The first line in my report today has to be the fact that from the 24 hour period 20 March 00:00 UTC to 21 March 00:00 UTC, Qingdao covered 308.3 miles. I think this is a new Clipper Race record for most miles sailed in 24 hours. We averaged 13.8 knots and are still going. It feels very good to be making way again.&nbs...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

Morning all! Since I last wrote we have been living on an absolute roller- coaster. The wind has been in the mid 40 knots constantly as well as the waves to match, with the added bonus of being behind the beam. These brilliant sailing conditions coupled with the ‘Black Snake' current has meant our boat speeds hav...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

The breeze built as forecast during the late afternoon and we changed down our sail plan and bunkered down for the night.  It turns out it was a good move as a couple of hours later, the wind speed graphs started shooting through the roof and the howling rigging noise started.  The developing low pressure sys...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 144.  Since yesterday the weather has continued to build as the low pressure system has moved in towards the fleet from the North.  As the wind has built, so has the sea state.  We are now back in properly sized ocean swell with the occasional breaking wave crashing over...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 1 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

The last 24 hours have certainly delivered some incredibly exhilarating and close racing. The wind continued to build throughout yesterday afternoon and for much of the evening, delivering quite challenging conditions at times, with peak wind speeds in the region of 60 knots and hail stones on occasion during the passa...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

Wow, what a 24 hours. We flew out from Japan and started heading north at a very decent speed, the wind started going back behind the beam, so we hoisted the medium weight kite and were soon flying along with the rest of the fleet. Soon after, we changed to the heavyweight as the sea state and winds were building, an...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

Wow, it has been the most eventful past 36 hours! I apologise in advance if it may sound a little funny, as I have been up now for going on 36 hours.  We were having a stunning run under a poled out Yankee and mainsail all day yesterday. We calculated we were in first position with our elapsed time following a gre...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

I just figured out that we are slightly over 7000 miles away from all our friends and family in Europe, that is if you are going west. We however are travelling east, to the west coast of the United States, so this distance will be even bigger soon. Also two days ago we hit 30,000 miles on the odometer, these are ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!  Some great downwind sailing yesterday quickly turned into some “Quick! Get the downwind sail down!” It happened so quickly that I had to slam the satellite phone down on my wife who I hadn't spoken to in almost a week. Sorry Sofia, it's not you, i...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 4

21 MAR 2014

'All Right'. We lost some ground to the rest of the fleet overnight due to our choice of sail plan. At its peak, we were seeing a steady 35 knots of wind with gusts of over 50 knots on the beam. This morning the wind slowly dropped away to 25 knots and our sail plan has increased accordingly.  The Kuroshio 'Black ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 5. Well it's hot! It is 23 degrees in my navigation station at the moment and not a lot cooler outside.  The water temperature has risen from 5 degrees when we left Qingdao, to an amazing 22 degrees as we try to ride the ‘Black Snake’. The Black Snake...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

In one word, frustrated. Since the start, we can't seem to go for six hours without sitting in a wind hole for a couple hours. I was hoping it was going to get better once we got around the bottom of Japan, but the wind is going from 12 knots to 28 knots and making it really hard to settle on a sail plan. Every time yo...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

Just after 06.00 UTC, we passed the southern tip of Japan and we are now on the great circle route to San Francisco which is now just under 5,000 miles away. During the night we closed the gap a little on the leaders, though as we came round the tip of Japan, we lost a few miles as the rest of the fleet got a better ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

Quite a surprise met me this morning.  After a long night of rain and on/off wind, I was feeling woe-full of any improved fleet progress as I sipped my 04:30am cup of coffee. However, as the light appeared this morning through the mist, so did the present of five other Clipper Race yachts. The fleet leaders were n...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 143. WOW! The breeze is just right, the current is favourable and the speed is well and truly planted in the double figures. A freight train has got nothing on us right now.  Earlier today we passed the southern tip of Japan, which marked not only the final waypoint before the Gol...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

The word of the day simply has to be frustration. I suppose as they say, what goes around comes around and after building a healthy lead by avoiding the wind holes of the previous 24 hours, we managed to find our own personal wind hole last night and spent an incredibly frustrating six hours bobbing around, whilst othe...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

Welcome to the Pacific Ocean. Well has been another busy 24 hours on Team Garmin. With the changeable conditions, the crew are working extremely hard as the skipper is calling for numerous head sail changes, and several spinnaker hoists and drops, which the conditions demand.   I really hope that we do well in t...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

Hooray! We are racing, finally and we have a very nice breeze, 80 percent of the time. It has been swinging around behind us a bit too much and decreasing at times, then it rips back in from the north north-west at 30 knots.  We are running a poled out headsail to introduce the new crew to downwind steering, which...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

Hello World! Day 3 of our race towards San Francisco, Yesterday was a very mixed day and night. One moment, we were going forward with 10 knots, half an hour later we would be stalled. We moved ourselves more eastward of the pack and that resulted in a third place at the 00:00 UTC schedule. At day break, I was woken ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!  It looks like we made it through the last of the light stuff for a while. In the early hours of this morning, we passed under a developing front with light and variable winds and were treated to an epic fork lightening show. It was the first time I've seen or...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

'All Right'. Everything was going very well until the early hours of this morning when we sailed into a wind hole in our south western approach to the southerly tip of Japan. We sat there for several hours in heavy rain and with lightning all around us, desperately trying to get the boat moving. In the end, we got the ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 3

20 MAR 2014

Morning all! Today has been a hard day. I feel like I have been fighting the boat since I woke up this morning, after only two hours sleep I might add. Trying to keep the boat going in no wind at all is almost as tough as keeping the boat together with lots of wind! Let’s just say that the only good thing about...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 4. Well the interesting conditions continue with most of the fleet sailing into a wind hole last night.It appears that GREAT Britain managed to avoid the worst of it by taking a more northerly track. We were neck and neck with many of the other teams. Kites up, in poo...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

What has happened since yesterday? I don't actually know as much as I normally would. This bug has laid me out and I'm in bed as much as possible, hoping to recover soon. I do know that the nice following wind we started in didn't last long, and we've spent a lot of time since in light and variable winds. The team have...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

After a good twelve hours racing under kite from the re start gate, the wind died off from the north and we sat bobbing for six hours whist the yachts further north got some wind, which we eventually received during the night. By that time however, we had lost 40 miles and went from first to last position on the leader...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

Morning all! It's been an incredibly frustrating night aboard Mission Performance. The wind that we were lucky enough to have for our race start soon died to almost nothing a few hours after our entanglement incident, which meant that we couldn't make any gains on the fleet as they continued to speed off into the dista...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

We are still in the East China Sea and it is day 2 of Race 10.  I will remember the East China Sea as a place where the wind never stayed constant, not in direction or strength for a minute. It is always up and down, this way and that. Exhausting for the crew on deck doing the sail changes and not more than a...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 142.  What an eventful 24 hours it has been aboard the good ship Invest Africa. Yesterday at blog o'clock, I left you with the news that we were charging along at full pelt with Mr Medium weight and the full mainsail carrying us along at speed well in to the double figures. A lot ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

Well, what a 24 hours of contrasting weather. After starting racing under spinnaker, the wind strength and sea state increased to the point where we thought it prudent to switch to white sails, which we did and subsequently spent most of the afternoon power reaching under white sails at between 12 and 14 knots of boat ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

Good morning. Well after a long wait, what an action packed start to this race. Straight from the off we were into a 'hot' spinnaker run which saw us peel quickly from the lightweight to the medium weight kite, and we were soon seeing some very impressive speeds from all the boats, Team Garmin’s highest speed was...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

After a very short "holiday" in Qingdao, we are back on the track! Well, nearly.  As I write, we have 80 miles to go to the starting waypoint where the fleet officially started Race 10 yesterday.  So we have a little more preparation and sleep time to go. We should be starting around 12:00 UTC. Even though we...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

Hello World! Travel day 4, racing day 2. We are now well on our way and entering Japanese waters. It has been a stop and go game as we sailed from wind hole to wind hole in the last 24 hours. At this moment we are on the move again with a respectful 10 knots of boat speed, sporting full white sails. We are still on the...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! After a great few hours of high speeds on course yesterday, we ran out of wind and returned quickly to early Leg 5 conditions; low speed, lower VMG’s (Velocity Made Good) and very high tacking angles. For the best part of last night, we had two options; flap ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 2

19 MAR 2014

'All Right'. Without a doubt, the sailing conditions we enjoyed yesterday afternoon were the best we have had since leaving the Southern Ocean. We spent the best part of eight hours power reaching with full mainsail and medium weight spinnaker in 20 knots of breeze and a slight sea state. We were constantly maintaining...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

Yellow Sea day 2, Race 10 start number two, and we are off!  You can't pick your start position on the Le Mans start, it’s done for you and as the cards were laid, the traditionally best spot – number one, which we drew - turned out to be the worst spot!  The misty race start line up took us south...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 3. Well we are off... The fog lifted to about one and a half miles visibility, it was enough and we all lined up for a Le Mans start. A big shout out has to go to Henri Lloyd skipper, Eric Holden, who's duties as lead skipper were somewhat longer than usual. He did a...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

The race has begun. After thick fog delayed our plans for a Le Mans start, we finally got a break in the weather this morning to get the race under way. This was the first Le Mans start we've had to do downwind, which added a challenge to make sure it was done fairly. Everyone got away cleanly. The fog is still with us...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

And we are off again, this time we were at the leeward end of the line next to Team Gamin. On the way to the re-start yesterday we picked up something around the propeller which meant we were unable to motor overnight. We were able to put a GoPro over the side and could see that we had picked up a lot of weed and were ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

Morning all! Well we have finally started! After a long period of heavy fog the fleet finally found a clear patch to start.On board Mission Performance, our start went really well and we managed to get ourselves into clean air and were one of the first to have a spinnaker deployed after the ten minute mandatory sail pl...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 141. Tally Ho!  We are now finally, after being entrapped in thick fog, racing towards the South of Japan. Yesterday the decision was made that due to the poor visibility, it would be very difficult, if not impossible to run a Le Mans start as we would not have been able to ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

Well at 08:50 local time, we finally started racing and are currently heading to the bottom of Japan at around 11 knots under spinnaker, still in reasonably thick fog, which is making things a little interesting, but hopefully we should drive out of that in the not too distant future. We are currently positioned lower ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!I trust everybody enjoyed Saint Patrick's Day as responsibly as we did. Thanks to Derry City Council for the care package which contained 17 green and white shamrock clad top hats and the glittered green neck-ties. They definitely lifted morale while slowly making o...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

'All Right'. After nearly two days of slowly making our way south east out of the Yellow Sea, the fog lifted this morning and lead skipper, Eric Holden of Henri Lloyd, organised a Le Mans start. It took a little while to get all the boats assembled in a line but at 08:50 local time (00:50 UTC), the start got under way ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

Hello World…and we are off! This morning we started our race to San Francisco again, the wind is good and after a well organised Le Mans start, we are on our way.Last night as we motored further during the night to find better weather, there was still heavy fog and we could not see more than just a boat length o...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

Hello World…and we are off! This morning we started our race to San Francisco again, the wind is good and after a well organised Le Mans start, we are on our way.Last night as we motored further during the night to find better weather, there was still heavy fog and we could not see more than just a boat length o...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 10 RACING DAY 1

18 MAR 2014

It’s very similar to when we left Albany (Race 5), when we started 36 hours behind the fleet, yet closed in to finish fourth fastest. The psychology makes it a little harder to race because you don’t have a boat next to you, but we will set our own gates to achieve time targets and race weather windows...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 DAY 1

17 MAR 2014

What a quick home port stopover. Great arrival and send off celebrations and now we are on route to San Francisco after the race start was called due to low visibility and the danger of fishing areas and cargo ships. I have been lucky to have been to Qingdao twice as skipper and a few other times and every time I have ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 DAY 1

17 MAR 2014

Morning all! After a fantastic stopover in Qingdao, we started Race 10 in very light winds and a reducing visibility, which after a fantastic start meant that we suspended racing in order to better avoid the shipping and fishing fleets. Since then the fog has started thickening even more and it has been down to just a ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 DAY 1

17 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 140.  Good morning all.  Welcome back to your first fix of skipper’s blog for almost a week.  We are now well on our way to San Francisco, California. The stop in Qingdao was great, if a little short, but we got all that we need to do done to Invest Africa and ever...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 DAY 1

17 MAR 2014

Nothing much to report I am afraid, the fleet is still motor sailing, probably until tomorrow morning now, trying to escape the thick fog we are in before we start racing. Hopefully tomorrow will bring us better visibility.  ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 DAY 1

17 MAR 2014

Oh what fun we've had! After the race start in Qingdao, the wind died and with the yachts in close proximity and with the visibility reducing all the time, the lead skipper, Eric on Henri Lloyd made the correct call to cease racing and motor into clear water.So we have motored overnight with the intention to start raci...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 DAY 1

17 MAR 2014

Hello World! A new race awaits us, Race 10, the big one across the North Pacific – 5,600 miles in total.Qingdao has been overwhelming, the effort and entourage was great and the people very friendly. The stay was brief, with lots of events going on, day and night. As big as the reception was, the departure was ve...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 DAY 1

17 MAR 2014

Happy St Patrick's Day from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Some may know that Patrick was actually born Welsh and taken from his home in an Irish raid. These raids continue on our Gallic and British neighbours to this day. A good example was the Six Nations trophy which was successfully taken just this weekend! Well done Ire...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 DAY 1

17 MAR 2014

The visibility is bad, really bad, the worst we have had yet. Thank goodness for the technology advancements of AIS (Automatic Identification System) and we've been able to see all the ships and fishing boats on the chart plotter. Once the wind shifts into the north tomorrow we are hoping that the fog will clear and we...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 DAY 1

17 MAR 2014

After a very brief stopover in Qingdao we are on our way again heading off across the North Pacific towards San Francisco. The people of Qingdao put on a spectacular welcome and departure ceremony and made all the crew feel very welcome during our short stopover. The maintenance team were on board and working on the bo...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 DAY 1

17 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 1. Well so much to talk about... First the stopover. Qingdao was a very short stopover for us. It was however a changeover stopover where we say hello to new crew members and goodbye to old friends. It was the first time that our new crew have been in port to greet u...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 DAY 1

17 MAR 2014

Thanks Qingdao for a superb stopover, full of cultural surprises and it didn't snow! Our only regret is that it wasn't longer as we didn't have much time to relax in the whirlwind schedule featuring banquets, dinners, ceremonies and celebrations.  The welcome reception was unforgettable!  The crew loved ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 10 START

16 MAR 2014

It’s going to be rough and cold but I have a really strong crew on this race, so hopefully we are going to get a good result. More than anything on this race; it’s all about being safe. On previous races the Pacific crossing has caused some pretty terrible damage to the boat and injury to the crew. So keepi...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9.1 REPORT

16 MAR 2014

It feels so awesome to be here. It was definitely an uphill challenge and I don’t mean  just the sailing. It was one thing after another on this race, but the team responded really well. We were battling the headwinds, the mainsail was breaking at one stage, weed around our propeller but we got here in the e...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 10 START

16 MAR 2014

We are really looking forward to this race. It’ll be a bit of redemption after the last race which really didn’t go in our favour so we really need to prove to ourselves that we are still able to compete at the top level. We haven’t crossed an ocean in a while, it’s been a lot of coastal racing....

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 10 START

16 MAR 2014

This stopover has been non-stop for us as a team. As the home boat the days have been full from 8am in the morning to late at night as everyone is keen to meet the crew and show their appreciation for us being here. This is probably the busiest stopover for us in the entire race so far, especially as we have been busy ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 10 START

16 MAR 2014

Race 9.1 was a really good race for us, and spirits were really high. I know it was supposed to be one of the toughest races, but to me it was a joy. What I want to ensure is that everyone keeps hold of that feeling for the Pacific Ocean crossing, it’s a long race and the guys will need to keep their stamina up. ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 10 START

16 MAR 2014

We are really excited about the next race. I think there is a lot of apprehension about the next race with some of the new crew joining. The round the world crew who have been with us from the beginning have been through some pretty rough stuff through the Southern Ocean so we sort of know what to expect. We know the b...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 10 START

16 MAR 2014

The Pacific Ocean – we are all really looking forward to it. It’s going to be a really tough challenge with the cold and the tough wind we can expect, but everyone is really excited to get stuck in. The team are really ready – we have been doing a fair bit of work to the boat, sorting out any problems...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 10 START

16 MAR 2014

This is one of the big ones. It’s the longest ocean crossing and it’s been a while since we did some big ocean sailing so it will be good to get back out there. It’ll be different tactically to the coastal racing. It’s the start of Leg 6, so when we arrive in San Francisco we will be a lot close...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 10 START

16 MAR 2014

This is a long race for us, 5,600 miles and an anticipated 26 days until we arrive in San Francisco. The crew are willing and ready. The biggest challenge for us will be the big waves and strong winds with temperatures cold in the beginning. When it comes to tactics I’m waiting to see what the weather has in st...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 10 START

16 MAR 2014

The team has been looking forward to the Pacific crossing for a long time now, these are the kind of conditions our team do really well in, so we’re all looking forward to this race. The Pacific Ocean as well know deserves a great deal of respect, we’re going to be tackling a very large ocean and we’r...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 10 START

16 MAR 2014

I think the team are feeling pretty good. In some ways we are very lucky as we had a good result arriving into Qingdao. We got in early which gave us a bit more time to prepare. Some of the other teams arrived in days after. We are in pretty good shape; we all know this is a long leg but the crew are all looking forwar...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 10 START

16 MAR 2014

You can break this into two races. You have to get to Japan first, the trip up to Japan is the same as the trip to Qingdao in the sense you will face massive fishing fleets, heavy traffic from other boats and also very changeable conditions. Once you get to Japan it’s where the cold air from the Siberia meet the ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 13

15 MAR 2014

The final blog of what seems to be the end of an era - Leg 5. We have made better than good speed over night for port, and will be arriving for our welcome ceremony at 16:00 local time. It can't come soon enough.. it is like Christmas when you are little... you know it is hours away from present time, but you want it n...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 12

14 MAR 2014

LEGEND! LOOK IT UP, AND YOU WILL SEE A PICTURE OF ROUND THE WORLD CREW MEMBER TRISTAN GRIGALIS! At about 10:00 local time today, 14 March the wind finally abated enough for us to stop and inspected our fouled prop. When I say abated, I mean it went from Yankee 3, staysail, 2 reefs in the mainsail and 30 knots to essent...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9.1 REPORT

13 MAR 2014

I’m feeling great to be here. You always get a fantastic welcome here in Qingdao, I was here on the Clipper 2009-10 Race, and I think it is even bigger than it was then. It’s been tough getting here; it’s been a long race from Singapore lots of trials and tribulations to deal with. Even the last 200 m...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9.1 REPORT

13 MAR 2014

It is absolutely fantastic, this is by far the biggest arrival we have had and it’s been amazing. None of us were expecting the fireworks to go off as we came in. The crew are all really happy. There is a great atmosphere and we are all really happy to be here. It was always going to be a hard leg; it was particu...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9.1 REPORT

12 MAR 2014

It is amazing- obviously I was here last time as I skippered New York in the Clipper 2011-12 Race. Back then Ian Conchie, Skipper of Qingdao was the one in the limelight. As the Qingdao skipper this time around we got a lot of media attention especially as so many people have been following us- it feels so much bigger ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9.1 REPORT

12 MAR 2014

Myself and all the crew are very glad to be here. It has been a very long, hard voyage for everybody. We had the problems with the boats so we called into Hong Kong, and every mile has been hard and fought for. We had a couple of hard days going up through the Taiwan Strait, the wind really did pick up but we stuck wit...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9.1 REPORT

12 MAR 2014

It’s is absolutely incredible to be here. It was a good race, a good length race but it was a bit windy and rough which gave us a bit of a blast, but that’s what we do well in so we are very pleased. We were more pleased that we beat the other groups in our start group because it was a really big boost for ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9.1 REPORT

12 MAR 2014

It was different from other races, tough going up wind and it was different because we were running on an elapsed time which meant we didn’t all start together. The thing with this race is that the boat was at an angle all the time, so you are bashing around through these waves all the time, while trying to make ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9.1 REPORT

12 MAR 2014

It is great to be here in Qingdao, it was a long and hard race so to be here and to have made it to the finish line we are very happy. We started in Singapore with a Le Mans start and within a few days we were up at the front of the fleet. After Race 9 was cancelled and we made our way to Hong Kong for modifications we...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9.1 DAY 10

12 MAR 2014

'All Right'. The wind died at first light this morning and so the engine went back on after nearly 24 hours of sailing at good speed. The wind is forecast to veer round to the north east to head us and build to 25 to 30 knots in strength. At the moment we are slightly ahead of schedule so I still anticipate arriving in...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 10

12 MAR 2014

Each day is getting harder for the crew and me... every time we have a mini breakthrough, we find another wall to climb. Motor sailing at night is a lottery due to the number of fishing nets and I think we have lost... I am pretty certain we have something around the propeller shaft that is increasing the load on the e...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9.1 REPORT

11 MAR 2014

It definitely felt like a slow boat to China. It was a long hard beat getting up here, obviously we ended up running up the strait to Taiwan as opposed to round the outside which I think meant we had a different sea state maybe not quite so big waves  but still short and sharp and we also wound up about in an awfu...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 9

11 MAR 2014

We are motoring towards Qingdao with around 200 miles to go, so all going well we should be in my midday tomorrow. We are making good progress with a nice tailwind, certainly the best conditions we have had all race and being wasted under motor. We are out of the fishing fleet and following the path of the shipping tra...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9.1 DAY 9

11 MAR 2014

The race to our home port is over and we didn't get the race result we were trying for but the crew worked hard in the weather we had which was fruity at times. After what seems a very long race from Singapore to Qingdao after the stop in Hong Kong, in the end it all came down to when you started the race and the luck ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9.1 DAY 9

11 MAR 2014

Morning all. Well it has been a hard race and it was with mixed feelings we received the news of the race being shortened. On one hand it was nice to relieve the pressure of racing the yacht and use the engine to make best speed towards Qingdao, especially as at the time we were drifting in next to no wind amongst some...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 9

11 MAR 2014

Well, just when I thought we were making good progress to Qingdao, a series of other events have unfolded. One - the weather. It is supposed to be easterly at the moment, allowing us a direct course to our next waypoint to clear the coast of China. We have a wind direction just west of north. Two, we kicked on the engi...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 9

11 MAR 2014

Hello World! Finish. Last night we crossed the finish line being the line 90 degrees east of Waypoint ESC2 VM. Unfortunately for most of us this race did not feel like a race. We have 24 more hours to motor to Qingdao and hope to be there tomorrow afternoon. We have a busy stopover and there will not be much time ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9.1 DAY 9

11 MAR 2014

'All Right'. We have made steady progress in the last 24 hours though we are still having to continually dodge round fishing boats and their nets as well as big clumps of seaweed. At least it keeps the crew on their toes and stops them getting bored. We stopped once in the early hours of the morning to clear the rudder...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 8

10 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 19. Well what a difference a day makes. It is definitely colder and dry suits, thermals hats and gloves are being donned at all times. We are also in a wind hole! We currently have 6 knots of wind. We are doing everything we can to keep ‘Big Blue’ (the nic...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 8

10 MAR 2014

The wind has dropped to single digits and shifted more to the east. This has allowed us to point directly at the finish but with quite slow speeds. With less wind across the deck and the sun shining through a thin layer of cloud it is not all that unpleasant out. The crew have made a bet about our finish time, which is...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9.1 DAY 8

10 MAR 2014

The weather has now abated to 10 knots still from the north east so this morning we changed the headsail to our Yankee 1 trying to keep up boat speed for a quick passage to Qingdao. The crew look like Eskimos on deck with every bit of warm clothing they have to wear on and I am sure if I let them the sleeping bags will...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 8

10 MAR 2014

We took advice from a container ship and diverted around the first fishing group but soon afterwards the groups merged and there was no way around, only through.  They cast their nets and turn downwind to fish, then heave nets and motor back up wind quickly to start the process all over again.  We encountered...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9.1 DAY 8

10 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 139. Over a month ago, as we were beating in to strong head winds coming out of the Vitaz Strait, when we should have been experiencing light breeze from behind us, I jokingly said to the crew “Well if we are having to go upwind here it must mean that we will get 10 to 15 knots o...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 8

10 MAR 2014

Luck is not on PSP Logistics’ side at the moment. We had to make the heart-breaking decision to retire from this race last night as our time frame to Qingdao is just getting further away. Our fuel injector pump that failed on the way to Hong Kong was the final nail in our coffin. It was a part that rarely fails a...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 8

10 MAR 2014

Hello World! All or nothing is the saying - well that is true for us. We have we been bashing through the waves for the last few days, now the weather reversed and the wind died to a mere light breeze of about 7 knots, with full canvas  and still 380 miles to go it will take us a good three days to make it to Qing...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9.1 DAY 8

10 MAR 2014

'All Right'. Today's game is called 'Dodge Anything that Floats'. Just an hour ago we had 90 targets on our AIS (Automatic Identification System) within a fifteen mile radius. Only three of them were merchant ships with the rest being fishing boats. Fortunately most of the fishing boats seem to have AIS transponders an...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9.1 REPORT

10 MAR 2014

It is amazing to finally arrive here in Qingdao, China. It has been a really tough race in many ways. In some ways we were luckier than some of the fleet who are still on their way in. We were lucky to dodge the worst of the weather, but it definitely wasn’t easy. We faced some very tough conditions in the Taiwan...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9.1 REPORT

10 MAR 2014

It is absolutely amazing to arrive here finally. The anticipation for arriving has been increasing over the last few days, especially with the tough conditions and weather we have been having. The celebrations that Qingdao has put on are fantastic! Everyone feels fantastic, we do have a very small team but everyone gav...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9.1 REPORT

10 MAR 2014

Firstly I can’t believe how good the weather is, we were expecting snow so to see the sun shining is pretty special. We had a really good race, a very tough race - fingers crossed we have done really well with our elapsed time. I’m hoping we have got either first or second place depending on how fast OneDLL...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 18. Well the long upwind road to Qingdao continues. We are hoping that the wind will veer sufficiently and soon enough that we may easily make the next mark of the course. It will be good to finally see some wind that is not on the bow either way. The crew continues t...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

The reason we have slowed down recently is the Yankee 3 is down after a tear developed in the clew. As the wind is still too much for the bigger Yankee 2 we are reduced to using just the staysail and mainsail at the moment while we repair the three. This short race from Hong Kong to Qingdao has put more wear on the sai...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

The wind has dropped off to around 20 knots making life a lot easier on Qingdao and now we are making much better headway. It’s still very cold on deck but the sun is coming out a little making it more bearable. We are hoping that the forecast wind will go round to the south soon so we may be able to reach or put...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

Morning all! The light at the end of the tunnel is well and truly in sight and getting bigger every minute. We have just 65 miles left to go and we are more or less pointing right at the finish line. With the wind set to die in a few hours it's a race against the weather forecast to make it over before the wind drops c...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

We truly have sailed the seven seas this trip - the Coral Sea, Solomon Sea, Bismarck Sea, Celebes Sea (ok we motored this one), Sulu Sea, South China Sea and now the East China Sea.  Tomorrow we will be in our final sea, the Yellow Sea, which we hope isn't actually yellows as the poor boat is already covered in a ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

Wo wo wi wa!  It’s been a very busy 24 hours on board the good ship Invest Africa. The wind continued to drop yesterday, so as the day went on we progressively increased out sail plan until we were under a full main staysail and Yankee 1. The amount of traffic last night was unreal.  Boats coming from e...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

Fingers crossed by the time you read this we will have finally finished Race 9, hooray! It has  been a long time coming and the we just can't wait to get ashore in Qingdao, but unfortunately we are going to have to as we are just going to miss the cut off time for daylight arrival today. This means we will have to...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

Morning. Well the last 24 hours have been a testing time on board Team Garmin, the stress and the strain of sailing to windward is starting to show. Last night whilst carefully steering our yacht through a fleet of fishing boats we decided to tack in order to avoid one boat which had just altered course and was heading...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

I don’t even think the 30 knots of upwind we had for only four days in Race 8 to Singapore was good prep for this. Everything is hard. Just sitting, eating, drinking, thinking. The boat launches off waves like a human cannonball out of the canon, and lands with the most bone-crunching sounds you have ever heard. ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

Hello World! We have been on this tack now for a long time, one and half days, we are waiting for the wind to turn to give us a good angle towards Qingdao. The wind moderated a bit overnight which gave us the opportunity to add more canvas. This happened in the morning watch changeover time. Our bow team and round the ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! The breeze finally died yesterday and we changed to the windseeker and gently drifted on the current. We floated past an anchored Chinese fishing boat. I'd love to know what the four fishermen on the deck thought as a pink sailing boat drifted past with a bunch of ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9.1 DAY 7

09 MAR 2014

'All Right'. Apologies for not writing a blog yesterday but as avid race viewers will know we were in harbour and I was busy dealing with the various harbour authorities at the time I was supposed to be sending it in to Clipper Race HQ. There were two reasons for the unscheduled stop. Firstly we needed to refuel as the...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9.1 DAY 6

08 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! So close but yet so far. We've been making great progress for about 36 hours now and have been able to point directly at where we want to go for all that time. I believe this is the first time we've done this since the crossing to Papua New Guinea from Australia wh...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9.1 DAY 6

08 MAR 2014

Morning, well it finally looks like the wind is easing a little, with no let-up in the direction as we still claw our way towards Qingdao. Yesterday we took a long tack to the east hoping to catch a wind shift which would see us for the first time sailing directly towards the finish, but unfortunately it did not last f...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 6

08 MAR 2014

It's been raining nonstop since yesterday, inside and outside of the boat! Condensation has built up and is dropping off every wall and ledge, on deck it’s been torrential and the crew are all thoroughly soaked to the skin. As they come down after watch, their hands are ice cold, wrinkled and white, some are wear...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 6

08 MAR 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 17. The wind has abated slightly and the seas are a little smaller but the drizzle has come in and reduced the visibility to just over a mile. We are making good progress and it looks like we will clear the "Strait of Taiwan" in the next 15 miles or so. The wind has s...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 6

08 MAR 2014

While we've seen some of the other yachts get some nice lifts, we have found none ourselves and continue on the same poor headings as the past several days. The wind has eased off a touch as we had hoped and the slamming off the back of the waves has also marginally decreased. As the temperature drops so does the conde...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9.1 DAY 6

08 MAR 2014

The never-ending beat is still never-ending and the forecast of the wind going a little more east that would  have freed us up to get north on one tack has been and gone. Now the forecast is for the wind to come more from the north which will make this beat longer. The lead yachts are able to be free of the wind m...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 6

08 MAR 2014

Morning all! Life has calmed down drastically with the wind at a steady 15 knots and the sea state nice and flat. Coupled with the wind freeing up it's making for a fast and pleasant sail! If we can maintain speed, which judging by the forecast isn't looking too hopeful, we could be arriving within 24 hours. Unfortunat...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9.1 DAY 6

08 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 137.  Today is the day, its happened for the very first time since leaving London... I have put on my mid layer jacket! The cold has really set in now, along with the dampness in the air it’s making life upstairs a little on the chilly side. Although life blow deck is a touc...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9.1 DAY 6

08 MAR 2014

A very short blog I am afraid today as we have been working really hard to rinse every last ounce out of the dying wind to get past the YS1 virtual mark  before it shuts down completely and leaves us at the mercy of the current to take us where it wants to go, rather than where we need to go to get past it. I am p...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 6

08 MAR 2014

Hello World! This is the toughest leg we had so far, I was not looking forward to it to start with, but it seems even longer lasting than we hoped for. I lost track of time, it looks like Groundhog Day – the same wind, same waves, with rain additional today! We know what day it is by having a different mother in ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

Morning all! Apologies for the brevity of yesterday's blog. There was a fair amount going on what with container ships, fishing vessels, as well as the wind increasing meaning that we were juggling getting the boat under control while keeping out of harm’s way! It has been a tough night with winds in the high 30'...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

Another bouncy, slamming night on board ‘Heidi’ (the nickname for our boat) as we headed out of the top of the Taiwan Strait into the East China Sea – which looks remarkably like the Taiwan Strait, grey, grey, chilly, windy and full of shipping... As the skipper of this vessel and once amateur crew, I...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

How much more can we take? I think the whole fleet must agree we have had enough of this. Beating to windward is never fun!  We have been hard on the wind since leaving Singapore with no reprieve. The last few days have tested my and the crew’s resolve as we have tried to make Team Garmin sail to windward in...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 16. Well we are currently getting a kicking. The wind on deck has not been below 40 knots for the last 12 hours at least and has peaked at 60 knot gusts. The seas are short and sharp. A world of difference to the larger but longer Southern Ocean waves... We all prefer...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

We are out of the Strait of Taiwan. The wind remains 40 knots on the nose but there is some hope that the wind will moderate as we get away from the funnelling effect through the Strait. Progress remains appalling with three miles sailed for every one made towards the finish. So otherwise if you are in no hurry to get ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

We are still trying to beat up wind but with a very small sail plan - three reefs and staysail. We are going more sideways than forwards with huge tacking angles of 150% at times, so very slow and painful to try and get any drive towards Qingdao until the weather eases off in a few days. All the crew are well if not a ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 136.  A short one today as our standard satellite connection is down. Things are much the same as yesterday, although the wind speed has dropped a little.  The mythical shift to the east is proving to be just that...mythical, it’s still yet to appear. Qingdao is not tha...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

Finally, we are sailing in a direction towards our mark and making good speed, hooray! In the early hours of this morning the promised wind shift arrived and freed us enough to be able to directly lay our next mark for the first time this race which was fantastic news and really lifted spirits on board meaning that Qin...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

We have commenced racing! We arrived in the vicinity of the starting gate just after dusk yesterday. We pulled into the bay just to the north of the gate to finish off some adjustments to tension up the mast. A job that is pretty hard to do in 30 knots of wind and large sea, necessary at the same time. We haven&rs...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

Another day beating up the Taiwan Strait. We have now been in this weather system for 60 hours, with winds up to 66 knots and a rough, short sea state making progress hard and tiring out the crew. Due to the weather helming conditions being heavier than normal, I am substituting a lot on our small watches. There is sti...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Compared to the past few days, it's been a relatively eventful 24 hours. We've been in a close battle with GREAT Britain who did well and have managed to pull away from us. They had been catching up for quite a while and eventually called our hand. We hoisted a Yan...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9.1 DAY 5

07 MAR 2014

'All Right'. The wind and sea state has not abated at all since yesterday so we haven't had the opportunity to try and further tune our rig. As a result we are still motor sailing with a third reefed mainsail and storm jib. Progress up to now has been slow as we have been controlling our speed and course to avoid slamm...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9.1 DAY 4

06 MAR 2014

Morning from a very busy and a bit chilly northern Taiwan Strait.  Well it has taken us a while but we are nearing the end of the Taiwan Strait, it feels like we have been here forever as we tack back and forth across the main shipping route, it was especially fun last night when the wind was at its strongest, it ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 4

06 MAR 2014

The wind has abated a little to a force 7 near gale and the seas it has left behind are still huge.  Last night we tacked our way up the shores of the Chinese coast and today we have made our way across towards Taiwan for a bit of a change of scenery. Not that there is much to see other than tankers looming out of...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9.1 DAY 4

06 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!  Well, it's another one of those 'Why do we do it?' days. 35 knots on the nose, it’s grey, wet, cold and generally miserable! I try to cheer the crew up by reminding them they paid good money to be here but it doesn't seem to be having the desired effect...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 4

06 MAR 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 15. Well we have had pretty constant 30 to 35 knots across the bow and the crew have been getting back into the racing mode. Life is once again at an angle and wet! It is amazing how quickly the temperature has changed. Most of us now are in thermals, hats and mid lay...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 4

06 MAR 2014

Another tough day on board Henri Lloyd. The wind just kept on building until we had a sustained 50 knots with regular gusts to 55 knots. At that point the boat almost refused to make any progress upwind and was sliding sideways a disconcerting rate. We sailed from one side of the Strait to the other with the outcome of...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 4

06 MAR 2014

Morning all! We have had a blustery 24 hours with high wind speeds and large waves meaning that the deck has been almost constantly awash. The temperature is starting to drop even more so the layers being worn are increasing. Only a short blog today I'm afraid, there are things happening on deck! Mission Performance......

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9.1 DAY 4

06 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 135.  The onslaught continues!  As we crash, bash, smash and generally pound in to the waves as we continue north it seems like it is never going to end.  The wind is STILL coming from exactly where we are trying to go (surprise, surprise) and we now also seem to be tack...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9.1 DAY 4

06 MAR 2014

This will unfortunately be a shorter blog than usual as I have bashed a couple of ribs on my back and it is making sitting at the navigation station writing this, whilst heeled at 27 degrees, somewhat of a more painful experience than it usually is! As you can probably guess from my opening sentence, the conditions are...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 4

06 MAR 2014

We are back online! After a small stop in Hong Kong to effect repairs on the high pressure fuel pump we are back at sea and are about 35 miles from the starting area as I write. We have a good breeze, a nice solid 30 knots on the nose, and we are kicking back the miles under two reefs and the staysail. So what did we d...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 4

06 MAR 2014

Hello World! We are still in the famous Taiwan Strait, where we are encountering heavy north easterly gale force winds, traffic is still dense, but it looks like most of the fishermen stayed at home. Last night the wind rose to over 50 knots and we were moving across the Strait with three reefs in the mainsail and a st...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9.1 DAY 4

06 MAR 2014

'All Right'. I'm afraid the news is not good. At 13:30 UTC yesterday afternoon we ceased racing due to ongoing concerns about our rig setup, which in my opinion makes it unsafe to continue racing. We spent several hours yesterday morning adjusting the rig settings to try and get the correct set up but to no avail. At h...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 3

05 MAR 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 14. Well PSP Logistics and ourselves went to a slightly different marina. We went to the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club on the north of the island. There was a bit more space for us to park up which was important given that we would be parking under an alongside tow. The ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 3

05 MAR 2014

The wind filled back in overnight and we are now beating into 35 to 40 knots of wind and some pretty rough seas. I am sure everyone on board would agree that it is not very comfortable, and the slamming makes it pretty tough to sleep. The floor of the navigation station is becoming littered with tools as every time we ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9.1 DAY 3

05 MAR 2014

So it’s gone from sporty to fruity in a few hours and we have had a very busy morning putting more reefs in and sail changes from Yankee 1 down to Yankee 3 and now just reefed main and staysail and we will maybe put up the storm sail after watch change. Water is coming from everywhere on deck and below deck. We h...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 3

05 MAR 2014

Morning all! Well we are finally well clear of the Taiwan Strait, however progress is being hampered by the adverse current we have here. It is now creating the opposite of the 'lee-bow' effect that I mentioned yesterday meaning that the current is pushing us away from the wind, meaning that our tacking angles are huge...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 3

05 MAR 2014

There is no part of the Taiwan Strait, it seems, that is clear of traffic of any sort.  It’s like trying to find a quiet spot in the shopping mall the Saturday afternoon before Christmas.  The rules of the road are also not adhered to.  The big ships that should alter course for you don't and the f...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9.1 DAY 3

05 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 134. Avid Invest Africa followers may remember that in the Southern Ocean we experienced some weather that not only blew the dog off the chain but also blew the chain away.  Well I can now report that the wall that the chain was attached to has also gone it’s that windy! We ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9.1 DAY 3

05 MAR 2014

After a very pleasant day's sailing in light winds, the next pulse of the north east monsoon arrived a little earlier than forecast yesterday evening just before dark meaning a swift series of downward sail changes were required to bring us back to a suitable sail plan for 30 knots of true wind. I am very pleased to sa...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9.1 DAY 3

05 MAR 2014

It has been an interesting 24 hours. We entered the Taiwan Strait in a nice stiff breeze, and saw the wind ease all day until at sunset last night we were just about managing to sail in 6 knots of breeze, alongside Henri Lloyd. It did not last long and a new breeze soon filled in and built quickly calling for some well...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 3

05 MAR 2014

Hello World! This is going to be a short blog, I just fixed the navigation PC by giving it a new... mouse, now I am able to work with it again… The weather is very bouncy here and there is a good deal of wind, about force 8. The Taiwan Strait lives up to its reputation as a short choppy sea, where current and ti...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9.1 DAY 3

05 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! I am happy to be reporting from the East China Sea having safely left the Strait of Taiwan in our wake. Considering some of the horror stories we've heard about the Strait, I think we got through pretty lightly. We did experience 30 to 40 knot headwinds but the boa...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 2

04 MAR 2014

What an exhausting way to start a race. First we had a rig bent like a banana, and a 100-mile motor into the teeth of a gale, followed by a series of starting gates in the middle of some very busy shipping lanes. Not the ideal way to start a race and leaving at least one very weary skipper. Hong Kong was a very quick p...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9.1 DAY 2

04 MAR 2014

Well the weather has been good for us so far - not from where it is coming from but the wind speeds have been around 20 to 25 knots and the sea state much less than when we motored to the start, so we have been able to make good boat speed for upwind sailing. Just as we were getting to the third gate, a number of ships...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 2

04 MAR 2014

Morning all! What a difference a day makes, this time yesterday we were beating in to 40 knot headwinds, now the wind is down at 10 knots and the sea is nice and flat. We made a tactical tack yesterday when we were level with Derry~Londonderry~Doire and although at first we weren't making a good course, we got a really...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 2

04 MAR 2014

Just like match racing, it’s all about the pre-start!  After much faffing and rig tuning the five boats that left Hong Kong two days ago finally made the start line.  We crossed the line just after Qingdao and Team Garmin, ahead of Henri Lloyd and Old Pulteney. It’s going to be an exciting ra...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9.1 DAY 2

04 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 133.  Well it’s hard to believe that less than 24 hours ago we were bashing and smashing our way to windward under a tiny sail plan.  The sea state was so rough that we broke the oven door...I'm not joking, we crashed off the back of a wave and 'BANG' - the glass in the...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9.1 DAY 2

04 MAR 2014

What a difference a day makes, we have gone from slamming into 3 metre waves to ghosting along in a little over 5 knots off breeze in under 6 hours, the wind really does go as quickly as it comes in these parts! We are still making reasonable progress towards Qingdao with just 790 miles to go we can feel the temperatur...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9.1 DAY 2

04 MAR 2014

Morning all, Last year I skippered one of the two Clipper 68s to Sydney, Australia, to establish the Clipper Race training centre there. When I returned Race Director Justin Taylor asked me if I would be available as a relief skipper for the current race. When I sailed these waters in the Clipper 2009-10 Race I promise...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 2

04 MAR 2014

Hello World! Race 9.1 day 2 from Hong Kong to Qingdao, race day 14 from Singapore to Qingdao and for the round the world race days you have to refer to Rich Gould’s blog on Invest Africa. Here on the  'Navigator ' (the nickname for our yacht) all goes well, we are still in sight of Henri Lloyd and Team Garmi...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9.1 DAY 2

04 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! This time yesterday I was struggling to type my blog we were bouncing around so much, today is a lot calmer and we are managing the same boat-speeds in less than half the wind! We started shaking reefs and changing sails as the breeze began to ease yesterday evenin...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9.1 DAY 2

04 MAR 2014

'All Right'. We left the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club in Deep Water Bay an hour ago and are now making best possible speed towards start line two from where we will commence racing up to Qingdao. The start line is 100 miles to the east so we will be there in about 12 hours. We arrived in Hong Kong yesterday afternoon and...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 1

03 MAR 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans . Well the wind has picked up as forecast to about 20 knots just forward of the beam. This means that PSP Logistics and I broke our tow in the early hours of the morning so that we could sail in convoy. I am still going to stay close to PSP Logistics as we have lots of TSS (Traffic Separation S...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9.1 DAY 1

03 MAR 2014

After a quick pip stop in Hong Kong for repairs and refuelling - which took around six hours compared to just 30 minutes for the repair that Sir Robin did – we then did a test sail and I was happy the rig was good. We started to motor to the new restart gate where we are now. We also popped into a bay just by the...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9.1 DAY 1

03 MAR 2014

Morning all! Well it's been a wild ride in the washing machine over the last 24 hours. We've had some pretty strong winds and some fairly lumpy seas which we are crashing into at a rate of knots. On the odd occasion the boat is airborne too which makes for some interesting noises down below. We have a conservative sail...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9.1 DAY 1

03 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 132.  Well the weather has definitely arrived. Waves are almost constantly breaking over the deck as we make our way to windward.  Life on board is very leany, and with the sea state being rough it means that everyone is moving around below decks with the grace of a three leg...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9.1 DAY 1

03 MAR 2014

We finally left Hong Kong at 22:00local time on Saturday 1 March and started motoring to the first of the three possible starting gates of the new course for Race 9 (now Hong Kong to Qingdao). In the event there was still no wind at the first of the starting gates so we continued on to the second by which point th...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9.1 DAY 1

03 MAR 2014

As predicted, the wind increased early this morning, still in the hours of the wee darkness. This picked up to a nice 20 knots on the beam, so Olly and I decided to disengage the tow and sail the rest of the way. As always, I said it was still dark, because naturally, if anything that requires a bit of skill or ri...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9.1 DAY 1

03 MAR 2014

Hello World! It is day 13from Singapore to Qingdao, with the mandatory pit stop in Hong Kong where we had our bottom forestay connection mended by Sir Robin himself and a top up of the needed fuel. We set off to the starting gate, this ended up being a gate almost 100 miles away from Hong Kong in the direction of Qingd...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9.1 DAY 1

03 MAR 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! So far the Strait of Taiwan has been living up to its reputation; cold, wet and wild with more fishing boats and other traffic than you can shake a stick at! We had a basic race strategy that all went out the window about an hour after the start. We were pinned int...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9 DAY 11

02 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 11. Well the tow is going well and I am pleased to report that we still have PSP Logistics a few boat lengths behind us. We are making good progress north and as we get closer to Hong Kong the amount of shipping is increasing. Last night we came second in the quiz to ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9 DAY 11

02 MAR 2014

Morning all! After our very short pit stop in Hong Kong we are well and truly underway and started racing a few hours ago at the second of three starting gates set by the Race Office. It was very interesting this morning as within 15 minutes the wind changed from 5 knots to 30 knots! We were the first to leave Hong Kon...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9 DAY 11

02 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 131.  We left Hong Kong yesterday evening and our first challenge was to negotiate the very busy shipping lanes and the associated traffic in the approaches to them.  This was made even more challenging with the arrival of thick fog that reduced our visibility to less than a ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9 DAY 11

02 MAR 2014

Hello all! Ah the South China Sea...it feels like we have been here for an eternity! After we secured the forestay our initial plan was to head for Kota Kinabulu to refuel and continue on to Hong Kong. Our geographical position at the time put us in a rock and a hard place. Sailing 200 miles in the complete opposite di...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9 DAY 11

02 MAR 2014

'All Right'. It has been a couple of days since my last blog so time for an update. At first light yesterday morning OneDLL and Jamaica Get All Right were making good speed towards our agreed rendezvous point with PSP Logistics. However when we were just five miles apart PSP Logistics called on the VHF radio to say the...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9 DAY 10

01 MAR 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 10. Well we have met up with PSP Logistics. When we were about 6 miles away we got a radio call from skipper Chris Hollis. His engine had mysteriously shut down. He was not able to restart it. There was actually quite a bit of traffic around and we wanted to continue ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9 DAY 10

01 MAR 2014

As we get closer to Hong Kong and our pit stop we have moved away from the very large shipping lane and now have fishing fleets of over 100 boats to get round which is not too much of a problem when you’re under engine but under sail, it will be a much bigger task. Lucky for us they are on AIS (Automatic Identifi...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9 DAY 10

01 MAR 2014

Pinch Punch – first of March and we are nearly in Hong Kong.  The final stretch of this motor has been foggy and the fishing fleets are out in force, looming out of the mist in pairs, trawling the seas dry.  It has not been the most peaceful night and I've been told it will only get worse as we go onwar...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9 DAY 10

01 MAR 2014

Well we are approaching Hong Kong and are due to be at the approaches late this afternoon, which means  with careful pilotage we estimate to be at Deepwater bay at about 20:00 local time, so the Clipper Race Office can carry out the work to the forestay. We have spent the last 24 hours carefully weaving our way th...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9 DAY 10

01 MAR 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 130.  Good afternoon Invest Africa fans, I promise I have a good excuse for the delay in today’s blog, and it’s not that the dog ate it! Just as it got to blog o'clock we were in the final approaches to Deep Water Bay, Hong Kong so I was a little busy ensuring we safel...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9 DAY 9

28 FEB 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 9. We are continuing north and hoping that over the course of the night we will converge with PSP Logistics around the Dreyer bank seamount. This means that the three of us will continue onto Hong Kong in convoy. The three watches Nemo, Dory and daemons have kept the ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9 DAY 9

28 FEB 2014

Apart from the crew getting more sleep and doing the daily jobs that still need doing whist motoring each day we have been running sessions on safety, trimming and helming and today Brian from 1080 (the Clipper Race’s TV production company) ran a workshop on photography and filming to help the crew take better sh...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9 DAY 9

28 FEB 2014

Morning all! Another mile another cruising phase...We have been hard at work knocking off some of the maintenance jobs list over the last couple of days. The sun is still shining quite strongly during the day making being on deck a very pleasant place to be indeed! Yesterday was our on loan crew member, Switzerland rou...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9 DAY 9

28 FEB 2014

Today we are progressing well by motor sailing with patches of sailing as the wind appears from time to time.  It looks like we will be arriving in to Hong Kong during Saturday night so it will be a shame to miss the skylines and see the coast.  For the daily wrap up of the kill list from our murder game do s...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9 DAY 9

28 FEB 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 129.  We are now within 200 miles of Deep Water Bay, Hong Kong so, with everything going to plan we should arrive there early afternoon local time tomorrow.  I am also very pleased to report that Hong Kong is now well within our fuel range as we have made the most of the bree...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9 DAY 9

28 FEB 2014

Well we are still motoring but since passing through the Paracel Islands the wind has veered a little and is now helping the engine, and we are now flying along at 9 knots which should see Team Garmin arriving into Hong Kong on Saturday afternoon/evening for the forestay repair to be carried  out, by Sir Robin him...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9 DAY 9

28 FEB 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!  We are currently motor-sailing at almost 9 knots toward Hong Kong and all going well, should arrive at about 0900am tomorrow local time. The plan is to raft up on one of the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club's floating pontoons in Repulse Bay whereby Sir Robin will ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9 DAY 8

27 FEB 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day eight. We continue to make good progress motor sailing in convoy with Jamaica Get All Right. We are currently 60 miles from the northern edge of the area marked "Dangerous ground" on the chart. Once we are clear of this we will make a course to rendezvous with PSP Log...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9 DAY 8

27 FEB 2014

Fuel is the hot topic today as we have been calculating, checking and recalculating our consumption and progress nonstop, trying to make sure we get to Hong Kong as fast as possible without running out before we get there!  With very little wind on the forecast for the next couple of days we don't want to be stuck...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9 DAY 8

27 FEB 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 128.  We are now about two days away from arriving in Hong Kong.  As we get close to Hong Kong the amount of shipping we see is on the increase which is keeping the team on their toes, especially on the night watches. The crew of Invest Africa seem to be suffering the same te...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9 DAY 8

27 FEB 2014

Well, we don't usually do our daily reports whilst we are not racing, but I thought I would write one today to update you on all the action aboard GREAT Britain over the last couple of days. Despite the bitter disappointment, the mood on board and general spirit has remained high since the cancellation of Race 9 and we...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9 DAY 8

27 FEB 2014

Good morning, not much to report today. We are still making steady process towards Hong Kong, carefully monitoring our fuel consumption, and sailing albeit slowly whenever the wind allows it. The crew are fairly relaxed and we have gone into a more relaxed watch system which will allow more off watch time than on. Beca...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9 DAY 8

27 FEB 2014

Hello World! Life is good on the 'Navigator' (the nickname for our boat). It's 05:30 UTC Thursday, we are a small 400 miles away from our destination - Hong Kong. I haven't tuned in for a few days, so I will give an update about our situation. We are making best speed to Hong Kong to get replacement parts for our fores...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9 DAY 8

27 FEB 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! All's well aboard the good ship as we motor-sail north towards Hong Kong. Lots of little maintenance jobs are getting ticked off the list and we managed a mini deep-clean today. Unfortunately we were out of VHF range for Old Pulteney's Music quiz yesterday evening ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9 DAY 8

27 FEB 2014

'All Right'. Well there isn't a lot to report really. We are continuing to make good speed north motor sailing under second reefed mainsail and staysail in company with OneDLL. In approximately eight hours’ time we will be clear of the north side of 'Dangerous Ground' and will then go onto a more north westerly h...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9 DAY 7

26 FEB 2014

All is not well on board Switzerland, there have been some murders.  Vincent Janetta (Leg 5 and 6 crew member) was brutally killed by the bosun, round the world crew member Gordon McDougall, using the skipper’s mug on the companion way steps.  Whilst earlier this morning, Leg 5 to 8 crew member Edward G...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9 DAY 7

26 FEB 2014

Well we have settled into the routine of motoring towards Hong Kong, I am feeling a little apprehensive about whether we will have enough fuel to get there! I keep doing the calculations and it is a little too close for comfort. Will have to try and sail for a few miles just to save enough fuel to ensure we make it! It...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9 DAY 7

26 FEB 2014

 Captain’s blog, sailing day 127.  We are still laying a good course straight for Hong Kong, the sea state has calmed and the sun is out.  We are currently sailing in an effort to conserve some fuel.  Last night we encountered a MASSIVE fishing boat that had so many lights on it that it resemb...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9 DAY 7

26 FEB 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 7. Well we successfully stopped in Kota Kinabalu and dropped off Rosie Gosling. We also refuelled ‘Big Blue’ (the nickname for our yacht) with as much fuel as she would take. We also bought a further 15 jerry cans of fuel (300L) that we will transfer to PS...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9 DAY 7

26 FEB 2014

We are now making our way to Hong Kong with Old Pulteney and Switzerland less than a mile from us and Team Gamin motor sailing nearby. As we motor towards Hong Kong we have been using the time to recap on roles and training for crew and a bit of down time with a quiz and a film each night at 18:00 after dinner.  W...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9 DAY 7

26 FEB 2014

'All Right'. Our quick pitstop in Kota Kinabalu actually turned into a 28 hour stop for various reasons. There were some issues obtaining the quantity of diesel that we needed as the marina didn't initially have enough. Unfortunately we also needed to put Leg 5 crew Jim Lawlor ashore, who had to leave for personal reas...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9 DAY 6

25 FEB 2014

We are back on the grid! Sorry everyone for not writing yesterday, as you are all aware now, we were the second boat to have our forestay bottle screw break. It was a very uneventful affair really. We were sailing along really nicely, in 15 knots of wind, with our Yankee 2 staysail and two reefs in the main. It was abo...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9 DAY 6

25 FEB 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 126.  Trials and tribulations of ocean racing. As you have probably heard by now Race 9 has been abandoned due to further forestay failures across the fleet.  As it currently stands three boats have had their forestays fail, so abandoning the race is both the sensible and saf...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9 DAY 6

25 FEB 2014

Hello World! Last night we got the news that racing was ceased, because of two more boats with forestay failure. The decision was made by the Clipper Race Committee to get the fleet to Hong Kong, repair the failure parts and restart the race to Qingdao. Unfortunate for us as we were on a good course and speed towards t...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9 DAY 6

25 FEB 2014

“All change, all change! This big red boat is now headed for Hong Kong!  Change here for a new forestay fitting and the start of Race 9.” Round the world crew members, the bosun, Gordon McDougall, ropework guru Roser Preuss and myself have been up on the bow inspecting our bottlescrew fitting and gener...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9 DAY 6

25 FEB 2014

Morning all! It's become decidedly balmy in the South China Sea over the last 24 hours, there is a gentle swell and beautiful sunshine warming us throughout the days. The decision by the Race Office to suspend racing until we have replacement parts for our forestay has been well received and the crew are looking forwar...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9 DAY 6

25 FEB 2014

A lot has happened since my last blog! Instead of aiming for the Scoring Gate with full sail and fire in our bellies, we're now aiming at Hong Kong, motor-sailing and without a forestay! At about 17:00 local time yesterday, while sailing upwind in 20 knots with Yankee 2, staysail and one reef in the mainsail, we heard ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9 DAY 6

25 FEB 2014

After another very positive 24 hours on board Team Garmin where we saw the team holding pace with most of the fleet and taking some miles away from some of the boats ahead, the crew are starting to show the hunger for success necessary to win at ocean racing, with a lot more effort being put into trim and helming, and ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9 DAY 6

25 FEB 2014

We haven't done the maths, but since leaving Sydney we feel like we have been motoring as much as racing and the team is understandably starting to find this a bit tiresome. On the plus side Hong Kong is a wonderful iconic city to sail into and if we by chance get anywhere near Victoria Harbour it will be another memor...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9 DAY 6

25 FEB 2014

After pushing hard finding boat speeds and good lift on a port tack and making a move up the leaderboard, we got a call from the Race Office informing us about Race 9. Even though we were doing much better on our home port leg, after three yachts had problems it was the right call and we are now on route to Hong Kong b...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9 DAY 5

24 FEB 2014

We continue to make reasonable progress. It is great to have an intermediate goal of the Scoring Gate to keep us from dwelling on how far we still have to go to Qingdao. Nothing exciting has happened over the last 24 hours, and after the excitement of yesterday we are happy for it. We have been racing against Old Pulte...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9 DAY 5

24 FEB 2014

Morning all! It's been a bit of a frustrating 24 hours on board. We seem to be losing speed against the majority of the fleet which is causing us to lose ground every schedule. At today's team meeting we put an action plan in place and we are collecting half hourly data to see where our losses are coming from. As we mo...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9 DAY 5

24 FEB 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 125.  The wind has be very stable for the past 24 hours so things have been very uneventful, our sail plan has not changed at all. We are continuing to work our way to the north tacking back and forth.  The sky is still clear, the water still warm and the temperature still pl...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9 DAY 5

24 FEB 2014

This will unfortunately have to be a short report as I spent most of yesterday evening and all of this the morning trying to persuade the generator that it wants to work! As ever it was a seemingly simple and routine problem, the impeller (the part that spins in the water pump to suck water in from the sea to cool the ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9 DAY 5

24 FEB 2014

Day 6 of the race to Qingdao, and all the fleet have bunched together ahead of Team Garmin as the boats pass the first racing mark of the course, it has been a good couple of schedules for Team Garmin with us showing small gains on most of the fleet, which means we are finally getting the boat on a par for boat speed. ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9 DAY 5

24 FEB 2014

Hello World! All is well on board the ‘Navigator’ (the nickname for our boat). It is racing day 5 which means we are nearly 1/3 of the way. Weather has been constant, so there have been not a lot of sail changes. The last 24 hours saw us being overtaken by Henri Lloyd. That brought us back to trim and helmi...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9 DAY 5

24 FEB 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Not too much to report other than the relentless bash upwind. We were in close company with Henri Lloyd and Old Pulteney yesterday but tacked north a little earlier than they did. GREAT Britain seemed to do well on the north going tack while we were all heading eas...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9 DAY 5

24 FEB 2014

As you are aware 'Big Blue' (the nickname for our boat) is currently diverting to the port of Kota Kinabalu due to a family bereavement of one our crew.  Very sadly Rosie Gosling's father, Rupert, died unexpectedly last Friday after a very short illness.   Rosie did happy hour today. As she is getting off&nbs...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9 DAY 5

24 FEB 2014

Well the wind has abated a little and we have now dropped out a few reefs. We are finding it hard to get the speed we had a few days ago and point up wind and keep any speed we have. As all the skippers must, most of the day I sit on deck looking at the sails thinking ‘Do we have too much up or do we need more? W...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9 DAY 5

24 FEB 2014

'All Right'. We have just arrived in Kota Kinabalu and are about to go alongside the fuel quay. Due to logistics issues getting the new bottlescrew to Kota Kinabalu in time, this is just a quick refuelling stop before pushing on to Subic Bay in the Philippines, some 600 miles away to the north. This will take us approx...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9 DAY 5

24 FEB 2014

The upwind race continues today and without much change in the conditions or any major dramas it’s been rather dull in comparison to yesterday. However, I have been finessing my once undignified high side bunk dismounts (see yesterday’s blog) I managed to get both feet landing together today, no wobble to t...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9 DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 4. Well we are making good progress towards Kota Kinabalu. At the moment we are beating to get past the North Luconia Shoals. Once we are past them, in about 40 miles, then we should have a straight forward close reach all the way to the port. If you count navigationa...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9 DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

Well it’s getting sporty again here on Qingdao with 30 knots of apparent wind over the deck and the odd wave cashing over. It is great sailing weather with some very close racing and teams passing within a few miles of each other as we all try to make the best tacking angle north towards the Scoring Gate and Qing...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9 DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

Morning all! We have finally been making our progress northward; the slight positive current has done wonders for what has only been mediocre boat speed since race start. The fleet looks to be converging in earnest with those of us whom stayed further south making easterly progress start making our gains on those that ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9 DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 124.  The game of snakes and ladders continues! As you will have seen from the leaderboard we have moved up and down it several times in the last 24 hours and it’s all to do with tacking.  Whilst on a starboard tack we make good Velocity Made Good (VMG), but we are not ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9 DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

The last 24 hours have seen the fleet re-unite towards the next mark of the course, with the eastern fleet coming in slightly worse off than the western fleet but really leaving nothing much in it with no more than about 10 to15 miles separating the top eight boats. This really is set to be a nail biter all the way to ...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9 DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

The ups and downs of ocean racing. The last 24 hours has seen Team Garmin joyous with placing third in schedules, as well as the bitter disappointment of dropping back down to ninth after having to take the losing tack to the east, it is testament to how strong the team is that they took this bad news in their stride a...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9 DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

Climbing frame, mountain climbing, assault course, whatever the name - it is truly in force. No matter how many times you go to sea, you never quite get used to it. You just look forward and try to see the distant light of when the boat will be flat again. For us, it is two weeks away in dock in China! Having said that...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9, DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

The breeze picked up early this morning and is forecasted to continue for the next 24 hours before easing again tomorrow. The seas are a bit more lumpy, making working on deck and sleeping down below more of a challenge.  After spending the morning with PSP Logistics, we met up with Derry~Londonderry~Doire for a w...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9, DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

Well, the windy stuff is here and it’s been all change since the early hours of this morning.  Skippers have that instinctive knowing when their boat isn't happy, and sure enough a fleeting glance at the wind instruments from my bunk confirmed it as simultaneously the watch leader appeared to suggest “...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9 DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

Hello World! Another day on a 35 degree angle, and the wind kicked up even more this morning giving us a nice full 6 Beaufort wind to play with. It is day 5 of this race and the ‘Navigator’ (the nickname for our boat) is ploughing through the waves on the way to the Scoring Gate, in a straight line only 350...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9 DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

'All Right'. We continue to make steady progress towards Kota Kinabalu and now have just 200 miles to go. With the wind straight out of the north east we weren't able to lay the course we wanted so we have put in a couple of tacks to the north and should arrive in about 24 hours’ time. Since the forestay bottlesc...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9 DAY 4

23 FEB 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Today is a bit of a Groundhog Day except that instead of 'weaving' our way upwind we are 'smashing' upwind. It is just as effective but not as controlled or comfortable. Unfortunately beggars can't be choosers!  We did well yesterday making a lot of north whic...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9 DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

Not a lot has changed since yesterday. The wind remains as it was from the northeast at around 20 knots. We are in a tight race with Derry~Londonderry~Doire and it has been back and forth with who is faster all night and day. PSP Logistics is only a couple miles further behind. Alas OneDLL just popped up about 12 miles...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9 DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

After pulling away from some of the other yachts after the start we now find ourselves having them cross ahead of us by the few miles we were in front by, so our tack out to the east has not paid off overnight. The early group that went to the west of the island must of had a better angle to head north, looking at the ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9 DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

Morning all! It's been a pretty good 24 hours on board Mission Performance. We are nearing the end of our easterly progress which, along with the rest of the southern group, should see us in a slightly more favourable current as well as saving distance on tacking as we make our way north. Conditions remain fairly benig...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9 DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

My skippers briefing for this leg started with the words “expect the unexpected”.   The unexpected wave or the sheet that snaps in the night or the Thai green chicken curry that turned out to be fish or having to wear your sunglasses at night. The crew are slowly getting use to the unexpected, the...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9, DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

Good morning.  It is another hot humid sunny day here in the South China Sea, it has been another good 24 hours on Team Garmin, seeing the boat move up to fourth on the last schedule, which gave everyone on board a boost. We have reached the stage of the race where the boats are becoming separated, also some of th...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9, DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

Another fine day of upwind sailing today. A nice steady breeze, and our sail plan is pulling us forward at a respectable 7.5 to 8.5 knots. We had a bad wind shift overnight so we quickly tacked off to the north, leaving Henri Lloyd and Derry~Londonderry~Doire. We were all trucking in the same direction and we seemed to...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9, DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

Hello World!  Sailing day 3, progress towards the waypoint is slow. All is good on board the ‘Navigator’ (the nickname for our boat), and the miles will roll on underneath our bow.  Last night we negotiated our way through the northern islands of the Palau Palau group, where afterwards we were wel...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9, DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire!  Another day of weaving our way upwind through the short waves of the South China Sea in warm sunshine and a stiff north-easterly breeze. The daily routine is taking over our lives once again with one watch passing the other like two ships passing in the night...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9 DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 123. The breeze has been steady for the past 24 hours and we have been making good progress driving Invest Africa hard in to the wind.  The latest position reports show that there is a definite spilt in the fleet, with 9 of the 11 boats putting in miles to the east and just two pu...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9, DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

'All Right'. Well, not much has changed in the last 24 hours. We are slowly motor-sailing towards Kota Kinabalu trying to maintain a course and speed that avoids slamming the boat and putting undue stress on the rig. The wind and sea state has increased slightly which has slowed progress a little. However we are still ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9 DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

In many ways it has been an uneventful 24 hours, which I suppose is a good thing, the wind has remained pretty constant and we have continued to make slow but steady progress towards Qingdao, which is still a painful 2,090 miles away from us. We did have a good period overnight where the wind freed up a little and allo...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9 DAY 3

22 FEB 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 4. You may have noticed that we are heading quite far east. One of the crew members on board has had some very unfortunate news from home with a relation passing away and as a result we are shaping course for Kota Kinabalu in the event that a decision is made to disem...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 3. Well we have been busy making progress into the north easttrade winds. The conditions are pleasant at the moment but progress feels slow. These boats really only pick up their skirts off the wind. The fleet seems to have split early with different yachts trying to ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

Well it was an interesting night for a couple of reasons. We did a really poor job in putting in a reef, even though we had performed it hundreds of times on the last leg. The result of all the flogging was a broken batten, which forced us to drop the mainsail entirely to replace the batten before the broken end tore t...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

Morning all! The first 24 hours of the race has been great and it's been interesting to see everybody's strategies start to play out. It's been a busy day with lots of tacking, reefing in and out, as well as battling with the sticky heat down below. As we are beating upwind there is a reasonable amount of water coming ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

It's been a full day of racing and I find myself and the crew slowly acclimatising to the ways of life on an angle.  The “must do now” jobs are being done and some of the “need to get done soon” jobs are being started and soon we will be happy enough in this tilted, bouncing environment to ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

A small wind shift came in last night and the fleet has split a little, some boats opting to continue and others opting to tack over, we did the latter of the two. We are currently making good speed and a reasonable heading which in turn is giving us a good return in Velocity Made Good (VMG).  I don’t expect...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

Well the first 24 hours of Race 9 have been reasonably kind to us, with a moderate north east wind meaning we have had a relatively pleasant, if frustratingly slow, beat to windward allowing good time for everyone to get back used to life at 30 degrees of heel! We are currently threading our way through a chain of Isla...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

The last 24 hours have been a very positive time on board Team Garmin. We have made some gains and made some losses, but the overall gain in the way the watches are applying themselves is starting to show some results. Unfortunately having never even been on a Clipper 70 before I do not have all the answers to the prob...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

Day 2 of Race 9 sees PSP Logistics still in good stead. The cards have been laid out, half the boats appear to being going to the north west of the Island and the other half, which we are in, have chosen the south east side of the Island. We find ourselves in a bit of a tacking duel with Henri Lloyd and Qingdao. We are...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

Hello World! Sailing day 2 and another lovely day on the water, the wind did not change much, so our sail plan has not changed, all that might have passed was a reef in and six hours later a reef out. The wind is nice and constant and the weather is sunny and hot, we are still sailing in the company of our racing mates...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

Good Morning Sports Fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! After a slow start yesterday morning, things didn't improve much as the day went on. We seemed to be missing a full knot of boat speed which over the space of a 400-odd hour race means we'd finish almost two days behind everyone else! We tried various different typ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

'All Right'. As most people will no doubt be aware from the report on the Clipper Race website news page Jamaica Get All Right has had to retire from Race 9. Yesterday afternoon we were beating upwind in 20 knots of wind under first reefed mainsail, staysail and Yankee 1 headsail. The sea state was slight and we were h...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9 DAY 2

21 FEB 2014

  Upwind sailing is always hard in the ocean, as you cannot see the end some 2,500 miles away. We have a current against us making  Speed Over Ground (SOG) much slower than we would like but the same will go across the fleet which makes the race to Qingdao a long one.  The wind is around 20 knots from t...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9, DAY 1

20 FEB 2014

Race Start day was always going to involve a lot of motoring as it is really not safe to start racing in the Singapore Straits, so we slipped our moorings at 11:00 and after a short bit of media activity and photo taking we were on our way motoring to the pre-agreed start area where we were to carry out a Le Mans start...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9, DAY 1

20 FEB 2014

Hi. Well it has been a fairly easy first day with a motor out of the Straits, and a Le Mans start at first light. It is going to take me a little time to get to grips with the new Clipper 70, but so far with the help from the Team Garmin crew I am very pleased with our progress. My main objective fr...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9, DAY 1

20 FEB 2014

Race 9, Singapore to Qingdao is underway! The fleet had a long motor from Singapore yesterday to clear the busy water ways of the Singapore Strait with the intention of a start at 17:00 local time. However due to the long motor to an appropriate start area, and a couple of delays with some of the bo...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9 DAY 1

20 FEB 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 2. Singapore turned out to be a great stopover. We managed to fulfil all of our corporate commitments, get some time off and get all the maintenance done.Singapore is quite a unique place. I have never been to anywhere quite like it. I really enjoyed the sto...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9, DAY 1

20 FEB 2014

Hello World! Day 2 on the water, but racing day 1. Yesterday saw us leaving Singapore and motoring out of the anchorage towards open water, due to delay of one of the boats we could not start our Le Mans start before dark. As a result we motor-sailed overnight in the direction of our destination. This m...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9 DAY 1

20 FEB 2014

We're off again. It is a beautiful day for our first day back. Sunny, hot, and a moderate wind out of the north to speed us on our way. We'll take it. We completed our second Le Mans style start at 07:30 this morning, soon after the sun came up. With the Clipper Race crew race briefing having scared most crews into won...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9, DAY 1

20 FEB 2014

'All Right'. We had a relatively short but very pleasant stopover in One15° Marina on Sentosa Island in Singapore. We managed to get a lot of maintenance work done on the boat during the long motoring period from the finish of Race 8 which allowed the crew more time for rest and recuperation in Singapore. However ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9, DAY 1

20 FEB 2014

What a great stopover Singapore was.  One15° Marina was a perfect host and had great facilities.  The motoring phase of the previous race gave us time to do many of the jobs and cleaning chores before we arrived so the crew had time off to go and see the sights or simply kick back and relax...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9, DAY 1

20 FEB 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 121.  Welcome back Invest Africa fans.  It’s been a while since my last blog but I hope you are all still with us! The stopover in Singapore was much needed after almost five weeks at sea. All the hard work the team put in as we were motor sailing paid off as we&n...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9 DAY 1

20 FEB 2014

This is what life is like on an ocean racing yacht and I am currently typing  at a 35% angle again. After some much needed R&R in Singapore we are now back racing to our home port of Qingdao. We had a poor start due to the Yankee hauls getting twisted on the rig so we were only able to hoist it half way before...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9 DAY 1

20 FEB 2014

Morning all! Welcome to Race 9. After a brilliant stopover in Singapore we are ready to race again for this next part of Leg 5 up to Qingdao in China. Unfortunately we had a few of our crew members leave us in Singapore due to injury so we have recruited some volunteers to help us race the boat up to China. So a big th...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

I think one of the advantage of having sailed this route before is knowing what to expect and when to expect it. In the Clipper 2009-10 Race weather did change very, very quickly and we went from being almost becalmed to on the way to Taiwan, and in the space of 12-18 hours we had 50 knots of wind. We could be expectin...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

We’re ready, we’re looking forward to this race, it is the one we’ve been waiting for. I do think there is some apprehension on the boat though, which is natural. It is a different leg – over 2500 miles upwind and we’ve got some difficult conditions ahead of us though the forecast ahead do...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

This is supposed to be one of the most challenging, if not, the most challenging of the race series after talking to past skippers and past crew. Some say this is the toughest and others say the following race, across the pacific is the toughest but this is just a condensed version of the pacific I think. We’ll s...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

Race 9 is 2500 miles up wind so it is probably going to feel longer than they say. We expect the winds to pick up as we reach Taiwan, and there will be short, steep waves so that’s going to be the challenge – negotiating those without breaking the boat. The crew look forward to every race start, they are pr...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

Race 9 will be a very different race to Race 8. We will start Race 9 by backtracking on the route through the South China Sea and we’ll be expecting light headwinds building up slowly as we head towards Taiwan. Come Taiwan though it’ll be all change and the headwinds will have increased too much stronger wi...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

Race 9 promises to be an upwind battle all the way to Qingdao, so even though it’s one of the shortest races in terms of straight line distances, potentially it’s not going to be that short as we are going to have to tack most of the way. Once we get to the north of Taiwan we’ll expect strong winds ag...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

Since arriving in Singapore we team has managed to grab some rest, but we’ve also made sure we have had teams working on the boat to ensure we are ready for Race 9 and we’ve fixed all those things that needed to be fixed. I think one of the biggest challenges of Race 9 will be the weather. We’ve been ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

I think this race is going to be upwind the whole time but we had quite a lot of upwind sailing on the last race so I think that has given us a little preparation for it. The extreme weather going from hot to cold and in really tough conditions is going to be interesting and also how the crew react to it. The crew are ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

Race 9 is the toughest one in my book. It’s not the longest, it’s no ocean crossing but its going to be hard, upwind racing all the way. Having already done it in the 2011-12 Clipper Race, I do know exactly what we have ahead of us. It’s going to be very cold, bumpy and pretty tough going. I had a goo...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

I’m quite excited about the next race, by the time we arrived into Singapore the crew were getting pretty tight and as long as our brains haven’t rotten too much in the last 7 days we can hit the ground running. As you know from the race so far, we tend to be fairly slow burners at the start of a race and c...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

Going from Singapore to Qingdao this time of year it’s the North East Monsoon, our course takes us north east of north and that’s the same way the wind blows from so we are expecting a lot of upwind work.  Initially it will still be quite pleasant it will be quite warm and the wind should be quite mode...

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TEAM GARMIN - JAN RIDD - RACE 9 START

19 FEB 2014

I think the crew have been unlucky and have had a hard time with the change of skippers. Now we will have continuity and start to be more competitive. I have sailed in the Clipper Race before and the next race is one of the hardest I have experienced in my life with the shipping and rough conditions. I’ve briefed...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 REPORT

14 FEB 2014

"The first few hundred miles from Brisbane were fast and we had nice off the wind sailing, with spinnakers up and pretty good speeds. From there, up in the Solomon Sea it all slowed down a bit, and then it slowed down some more but its been good.  It got slower and slower towards the end and got very tactical. Its...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 REPORT

13 FEB 2014

Our race didn’t start well. We were trailing the fleet for the first few days but we dug deep, focused on the result and worked incredibly hard as a team to claw the positions back. By the end we were so close to first place but we couldn’t quite take it. Congratulations to Henri Lloyd, it was such an incre...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 REPORT

13 FEB 2014

It was a difficult race. We had headwinds when we should have had favourable winds and there were a lot of changes at the front. We actually lead for a long time and we were a bit unlucky towards the end with the wind hole that developed but overall I am very proud of the team. We always set out trying to achieve a pod...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 REPORT

13 FEB 2014

It is wonderful to be here. It is the perfect result. We’re very excited.We had a set back in Australia. We had some damage and missed two races so really its like back to back wins for us because the last time we got to race was from Albany to Sydney. Its good to be back on top and show everyone that we’re...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 REPORT

13 FEB 2014

We are very disappointed we didn’t get a podium position in this race, though we only just missed out. We experienced very light winds in the Solomon Sea which allowed the rest of the pack to get away from us, though it was mixed conditions from there and it got better for us. The last 24 hours was a real race wi...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 REPORT

13 FEB 2014

We set off from Brisbane 24 hours behind everyone else, due to technical problems, which was  a bit of a shame but we got right back up there in the mix with the rest of the fleet. We had the same issues as everyone else in this race really, squally weather in the southern sea with the wind state that was all roun...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 REPORT

13 FEB 2014

This race was one of the toughest. It was a horrible combination of heat, duration, squalls and calms that were just relentless. It was very challenging and a thoroughly mixed race of many types of conditions. I’ve got a really great crew though and they really showed their strength in this race. You could pretty...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 REPORT

13 FEB 2014

This race was one of the toughest. It was a horrible combination of heat, duration, squalls and calms that were just relentless. It was very challenging and a thoroughly mixed race of many types of conditions. I’ve got a really great crew though and they really showed their strength in this race. You could pretty...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 REPORT

13 FEB 2014

We didn’t actually sail a bad race. It was just one tactical incident really that affected our final position, but in the final stage of the race we were actually very strong. We had our kite up and were making great progress. We nearly caught Jamaica Get All Right. They were 30 or 40 miles ahead of us but by the...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 REPORT

13 FEB 2014

The winds were facing us head on for much of the race and we were in first place for a long time before the winds then changed and we were stuck in a wind hole, which allowed the teams behind us to go around us. It was very nice to hear the now familiar sounds of the bagpipes playing us in today, and our traditional wh...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 REPORT

13 FEB 2014

It is very nice to be here and have a welcome committee. To be welcomed in by the Mayor of Derry Londonderry is fantastic.The race was a cross between challenging and frustrating. We did really well in the first section up the coast of Australia. We pushed really hard and got the three Scoring Gate points which took th...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 24

05 FEB 2014

So far Race 8 has been a race of ups and downs. There have been a lot of snakes and ladders that’s for sure. This is the nature of racing in this region with its tricky unpredictable conditions. The conditions this year have been particularly hard as the north east trade winds have not been present. As a result t...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 24

05 FEB 2014

On one hand there is a real sense of achievement having made it across the Race 8A finish line first, on the other hand it is rather meaningless as it is just a pause in the race and no actual points have been earned. Race 8A pushed my patience to the limit. It was a real struggle and at times it felt like we could not...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 24

05 FEB 2014

Gutted is the only word I can say to express how I feel about this race. We came in fourth by less than 30 minutes. It all came down to the last six hours at one point when we were 15 miles ahead of OneDLL until the wind abated and the angle we were coming from made it hard for us to keep in front of them. In the end a...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 24

05 FEB 2014

Morning all! It's been another frustrating 24 hours with the wind up and down, reasonably heavy squall activity as well as more kite changes than you can shake a stick at, or a piece of wool in this case! This morning has made up for things a little with a steady 20 knots of breeze from the north west (it was supposed ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 24

05 FEB 2014

It’s been a thoroughly testing race.  Like climbing a mountain it’s been a case of treading our own path to the top.  Sometimes the choice of route pays off - you pick a tricky ledge to traverse and round the corner you are rewarded with an easy assent.  Equally you can reach a peak only to f...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 24

05 FEB 2014

Captain’s blog, drifting day, whoops I mean sailing day 113. We are 9.9 miles from the finish line as I write this, but at our current speed we may still be racing when I come to write tomorrow’s blog. We had a great run overnight, but early this morning, as the sun came up the wind left.  Since dawn w...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 24

05 FEB 2014

Well what can I say, what a finish to Race 8A, yet again we match raced Henri Lloyd for the last 50 miles and at one point managed to get a couple of boat lengths ahead of them around 2 miles from the line, only for our spinnaker to collapse in their dirty air and allow them back into the lead which they managed to mai...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 24

05 FEB 2014

Hello world! After a spectacular finish, where we just came short of two miles on Qingdao to become fourth we find ourselves in the motoring section towards the restart point for Race 8B, the next race will still bring us 750 miles towards Singapore. It has been a tough Race 8A with a lot of tactical niches and a good ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 24

05 FEB 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Well, what seems like an awful long time, we crossed the finish line of Race 8A in the early hours of the morning or 1635 UTC your time. Our position so far is seventh which is a little disappointing but when you add in the three bonus points it takes the sting out...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 24

05 FEB 2014

'All Right'. At 21:00 UTC (07:00 ships time) last night we finished Race 8A from Brisbane to the finish line in the Sarangani Strait. We finished in eighth place which is a disappointing result but not so bad when you consider we weren't that far behind the front runners. We waited for a couple of hours for PSP Logisti...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 24

05 FEB 2014

Race 8A from Brisbane to the Philippines. This was a very tough race as it had everything. It had all points of sail, reaching, downwind (dead downwind), upwind (a lot of upwind)...with wind strengths from 0 knots to 40 knots, water spouts, thunderstorms, a lot of rain, and who could forget the relentless (still) heat....

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 23

04 FEB 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 23. Well last night was not too kind to us again and we lost miles to the front runners that we had made up in the day. We went for about five hours with 1 knot of wind. Still the breeze filled in and we were cruising under the guidance of ‘Penelope’, our ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 23

04 FEB 2014

We are 70 miles from the finish and racing neck and neck with GREAT Britain who are only a couple miles to windward. Qingdao is just over the horizon to windward of GREAT Britain. It is really tight racing and way too close to call. We are doing all we can to sail fast as is every other boat and gains or losses are ver...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 23

04 FEB 2014

Well it is all going to come down to the last 100 miles. We are now starting to see other yachts and it’s just going to come down to who has the better angle on the wind, which has now filled in by around 15 knots and we also have a few knots of current under our keel. We are still hoping for a top five finish in...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 23

04 FEB 2014

Morning all! It's been a bit of a stop and start 24 hours with lots of headsail changes, from windseeker to the medium weight spinnaker, as well as the reappearance of ‘Bruce’ our lightweight spinnaker. We are trying to eke out the best VMG (Velocity Made Good) while keeping a decent angle on the breeze as ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 23

04 FEB 2014

It’s going to be a long nerve racking night for us and an exciting final days viewing for our followers.  We have only 100 miles left to go as I type and we are estimated to finish in the European evening, so keep the Race Viewer on over dinner!  All the finishing positions are still up for grabs i...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 23

04 FEB 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 112.  I have been pondering what I can write about for today’s blog, and the answer I have come to is not a lot. The only manoeuvres that we have done in the past 24 hours are a couple of gybes, both of which went perfectly.  This is great for our boat speed and course ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 23

04 FEB 2014

Oh my goodness, what a nail biter, again! The wind has finally filled and it is still almost impossible to call. We have the northern lead pack consisting of Qingdao, Henri Lloyd and ourselves who are all within 3 miles of each other in terms of distance to the finish mark. We also have the southern lead pack consistin...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 23

04 FEB 2014

It was a tough night again on board with fickle wind, and broad angles. Most of the night we crept along at 2 to 3 knots, knowing for sure the rest of fleet would have slightly better wind. We are currently in a solid ninth position. With not many miles left in this race it would be anything short of a miracle to win i...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 23

04 FEB 2014

Hello world!We are under one hundred miles from the finish line and running fast under our medium weight kite. OneDLL is in front of us and seems to have just that extra bit of speed we lack to keep up with them, even though we tried everything in our power to stay with them or catch them, well played guys! Our ET...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 23

04 FEB 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Another night of variable breeze has lead into another baking day with slightly better breeze. Every six hours at schedule time, the mood on board hinges on whether we do well against the opposition or poorly. For the past few days, these times have been like a rol...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 23

04 FEB 2014

'All Right'. To be honest today feels very much like it did yesterday. It's still hot, the wind is still light, the sea is still flat and we have still got our full mainsail and medium weight spinnaker up. The finish line is a tantalising close 115 miles away and right now the final finishing order is down to the weath...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 22

03 FEB 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 22. Well things have been much the same on OneDLL at the moment. When the wind first came in a few days ago we had the windseeker up. We changed to ‘Penelope’, the lightweight spinnaker but today with our small wind angle (about 60 apparent) we elected to ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 22

03 FEB 2014

Good wind then light wind, we made progress and then we slowed. The wind will not settle down into anything like a steady breeze. Yet, the miles to the finish line tick slowly downward and the fleet and the finish line finally fit onto one screen on the navigation computer without zooming out. This morning we had a mis...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 22

03 FEB 2014

This must be the hottest day so far. We have all the fans working overtime below deck in 40 degrees Celsius heat trying to get the air moving around as there is non above deck and we find ourselves at the menace of lady luck with the wind. It will be a shame that this race will be won on who has had the wind fill in fi...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 22

03 FEB 2014

Morning all! It's been a slightly frustrating 24 hours, our supersonic gains on the rest of the fleet have slowed to more of a crawl as we have been dealing with light and fickle winds all night. The kite has been up and down like a yo-yo, due to squalls and wind shifts bringing the wind right on the nose for an hour o...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 22

03 FEB 2014

This leg is the only leg where your cup of coffee warms up when it’s on deck!  37 degrees in the chart table again today and the light following winds are not making it easy on board once again. So back to last night.  Burns suppers are traditional Scottish dinners, celebrating the life of a Scottish 18...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 22

03 FEB 2014

Well any progress is progress and we have just passed the 250 miles to the finish milestone, which is most welcome. We are currently making around 5 knots towards it meaning that if the wind holds and develops as forecast we should be across the finish line within 36 to 48 hours which will be very welcome indeed and wi...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 22

03 FEB 2014

Hello everyone from a scorching hot North Pacific Ocean! With 300 miles to go in this race, the end still seems very far away. Although it is lovely weather, the breeze is playing that old trick of coming from directly behind the boat, and not very much of it. So what tactics are available? We could come up on the wind...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 22

03 FEB 2014

Hello world! Welcome to a new week and day 22 of this race. So we are still on the same tack as the last five days, sporting our lightweight kite, but earlier this morning we changed it for the medium weight spinnaker for a few hours while the wind strengthened a bit. Now at midday, that has passed and everything is re...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 22

03 FEB 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Trust me, after the last couple of weeks; any morning with enough breeze to push you in the right direction at 8 knots is a good morning! We've been moving well all day on a course due west to the finish with kite up and music blaring. Yesterday evening we had 'spe...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 22

03 FEB 2014

'All Right'. We dropped our lightweight spinnaker just before it got dark last night and hoisted the heavyweight spinnaker. The wind and sea state had been building and we were pushing the lightweight spinnaker to its upper limits. We chose to hoist the heavyweight rather than the medium weight spinnaker because of a v...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 22

03 FEB 2014

Captain's blog, sailing day 111. The breeze has remained reasonably constant for us over the past day or so which has allowed us to make some good speed at 100% VMG (Velocity Made Good).  I am now just hoping the wind continues to come from where it is because currently our wind angle is also pretty good. The cond...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 21

02 FEB 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 21. Well King Neptune visited today andLeg 5 crew members Robin Mackenzie, Mandy Gong, Koert Hofman, and Jen Thompson (Leg 5, 6, 7, 8) who had not crossed the Equator before were summoned to his court to account for their crimes. As we have a no blame culture on board...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 21

02 FEB 2014

The sun shade is up and we are wetting the deck, trying to keep it liveable above decks. There is very little wind to cool you down and progress has once again dropped to a walking pace. Still, we keep working for every metre and we are all remaining positive that more wind will come, someday. When you are moving so sl...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 21

02 FEB 2014

There is something about not being able to do anything but sit and wait for the wind to fill back in and that's just what we have been doing the last 24 hours. Just like the other yachts over the last few days before this watch, we were making good speeds and now the tables have turned and we are watching the lead we h...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 21

02 FEB 2014

Morning all! It's been another 24 hours of brilliant sailing with fast downwind conditions. We still have a kite up and the newer crew have fully got to grips with driving, and trimming the spinnaker. Boat speeds have been back up to scratch as we manage to squeeze 15 or 16 knot surfs out of the small waves rolling und...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 21

02 FEB 2014

As the final stages of this race unfold, it's looking like all the tactical shuffles up and down in the leaderboard will only be set in stone at the finish gate.  Whoever gets there first congratulations! It’s been a difficult leg.  It’s not been the wettest or the windiest or the hottest or the m...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 21

02 FEB 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 110. We have been working hard to squeeze every last bit of speed out of Invest Africa that we can and we are gaining on some of the boats ahead. If we continue to make the progress and gains that we currently are we need at least another 36 - 48 hours to stand a chance of finishing ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 21

02 FEB 2014

Well what can I say, today is remarkably similar to yesterday, it really does feel like Groundhog Day, although that said it has felt like that for the last few days since the wind abandoned us. It feels like we are working so hard for such slow progress, but at least today we have a little breeze meaning that we are a...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 21

02 FEB 2014

It seems are scarifies to King Neptune yesterday is paying of a little bit! We have made some good gains over night, with a nice steady breeze...according to the GRIBS (weather we receive on our computer) we should be in less breeze, but I guess the king has taken little pity on us and is starting to throw us a bone. I...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 21

02 FEB 2014

Hello world! Another 100 miles passed under the keel in the last 24 hours, not the fastest speed we are doing, but at least there is consistency, this and hard work from the crew, resulted in overtaking Derry~Londonderry~Doire and OneDLL last night. This morning I knew why ,it was during my breakfast, when I saw our ro...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 21

02 FEB 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! All's well aboard and we've been making steady progress directly at the finish all day. It's scorching hot so a small Bimini top has been created to give the helms some relief from the relentless, baking rays of the sun. We are currently gliding past the Sonsorol I...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 21

02 FEB 2014

'All Right'. We have now had the lightweight spinnaker up for more than 30 hours as we slowly make our way west in very light winds. Fortunately we also have a favourable current which we estimate is adding perhaps another two knots to our speed. The weather forecast doesn't suggest we are going to experience anything ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 20

01 FEB 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 20. Pinch, punch first day of the month! Right so we are in the grips of a serious wind hole. Last night I believe we went backwards about 15 miles or so. This is due to a strong current in the area. Well, we are not the only ones sharing in this bad fortune. We are u...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 20

01 FEB 2014

After a day spent in a downpour, today the clouds have vanished and we are baking under the powerful rays of the sun. At least those on deck are while I hide down below in the navigation station. The laundry is all laid out drying as after yesterday's misadventures and there aren’t many pieces of dry clothes left...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 20

01 FEB 2014

It’s all work and no play here on Qingdao, with light winds to deal with on deck and a blocked head below everyone has been working to make sure we keep racing in the heat and winds. For the time being our route north has paid off and we have moved up a few places on the leaderboard, but just like other legs, thi...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 20

01 FEB 2014

Morning all! The last 24 hours have seen some great sailing and great speeds towards our waypoint. The kite has been up for well over 24 hours now and we are charging along at a rate of knots. The sun is out and the sea is relatively flat, meaning that it's been great conditions for our newer crew to get to grips with ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 20

01 FEB 2014

At least we only went a little bit backwards last night.  Stuck with not a breath of wind and bad currents, progress was doomed.  However the drift was a glorious spectacle, not a cloud in the sky and the sea was smooth and inky black, reflecting the stars beautifully.  Everything was also eerily silent ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 20

01 FEB 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 109.  Well our move to the north seems to have given us a few gains over the last day or so but sadly I fear that it’s a case of too little, too late!  This morning with a squall looming on the horizon I called for the medium weight kite to be dropped, a few small probl...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 20

01 FEB 2014

I am afraid it will be a short blog today as the temperature in the navigation area below decks, where we write our blogs, are in the low 40s and I am sweating sitting still! So from the above you can imagine the conditions, we have a gentle breeze from the south east, very hot sunshine, 5 to 6 knots of boat speed and ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 20

01 FEB 2014

Well, well, well, the king, sire of the deep, King Neptune appeared on board PSP Logistics today to pass judgement on our Pollywogs! And judgement did he pass indeed! It was a very royal affair; King Neptune (personified by round the world crew member John Madin) had a royal blue cap, a shiny crown and trident and was ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 20

01 FEB 2014

Hello world! It looked like the world was spinning faster yesterday and last night; it spun so hard that we did not make any progress forward. As a matter of fact, we went backwards, but more likely it is that yesterday we sailed in a gigantic wind hole that had no wind in it at all and left us bobbing around on residu...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 20

01 FEB 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Yesterday went from bad to worse progress-wise; after the wind shift that crippled our VMG (Velocity Made Good), the wind then died completely. We actually went backwards on the current by an impressive (if somewhat depressing) 16 miles. Thankfully we started movin...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 20

01 FEB 2014

As the sun set last night the wind died away to almost nothing. However, we managed to keep the boat moving overnight and in the right direction, albeit slowly. It was a busy night with several sail changes which involved dropping the heavy weight spinnaker, hoisting the Yankee 1 and then dropping that to hoist the win...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 19

31 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 19. Well the weather has changed... we have clear skies, light variable winds and laundry on the rail. As the boat speeds have decreased (along with the wind) not for the first time this race, the current is playing havoc with our course and at the moment we are tryin...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 19

31 JAN 2014

We are stuck under the biggest of rain clouds, currently with only a mainsail up while we sort out the mess on the foredeck. I have no idea what the wind will do next and at the moment the crew all look like drowned rats, although very clean rats. It looked for a moment that we were almost out and the sun was bright an...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 19

31 JAN 2014

The last 24 hours has been some of the best racing yet for us, our northerly tactic and finding a different weather system has paid off for the time being, but we just need the forecast to stay the same and we may make a few more miles yet. There is still a long way to go on this race and all it needs is for us to find...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 19

31 JAN 2014

Morning all! After a bit of a light night with only average progress made I was extremely pleased to see the wind shift which would herald increasing breeze as well as the start of a steady shift around to the north east. This is make or break time with regards to our northerly tactic, I have been planning to go over t...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 19

31 JAN 2014

Argh- blasted wind holes!  And that is all I shall say about our progress today. I can report that our daily routine of happy hour is back now the weather is drier on deck.  The afternoon watch have to devise various forms of entertainment for the other watch over dinner.  Last night Edward Gildea (legs ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 19

31 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 108. He must have been busy catching up with other boats that were ahead of us in the queue but today King Neptune finally arrived on board Invest Africa.  He had come to visit because four days ago we crossed the Equator from south to north and although the round the world crew h...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 19

31 JAN 2014

Well yesterday saw us develop a modified strategy to try to deal with the wind hole that was forecast and for the first 12 hours or so things went reasonably well to plan. Then we seemed to drive straight into an un-forecast area of light and very variable wind.  Now not only did this mean that our progress slowed...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 19

31 JAN 2014

So what do you do when you have 3 knots of wind? Crack the whip and get on with all the annoying wish list jobs that never get done? According to the weather, we are supposed to have some wind where we are, but alas, nothing but sunshine. We didn’t quite make it north enough as we anticipated, and as skipper Eric...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 19

31 JAN 2014

Hello world! TGIF... thank god it's Friday, because that is the day Aeolus, the god of the wind decided he had played enough with the Clipper Race fleet and changed his winds to give a clear passage. So while we are already enjoying flat water, full sails sailing, we are waiting for that magic moment when the wind shif...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 19

31 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Another reasonably good 24 hour run yesterday saw us make about 120 miles towards the finish. Things were going pretty smoothly today as well until a 35 degree wind shift crippled our VMG (Velocity Made Good) towards the finish. On the bright side it's a beautiful ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 19

31 JAN 2014

I can happily say that everything on board Jamaica Get All Right is 'Get All Right'. The sun is shining, the wind is steady from a good direction, the squalls have largely disappeared and we are making very good course and speed straight for the finish line 615 miles away. We are currently reaching under full mainsail ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 18

30 JAN 2014

We have been outflanked both to the north and the south of us and the pincers are closing in around us. I really can't speculate how this will turn out but it makes for exciting spectating; only we are not spectators and will have to control our nerves while it all unfolds. We are currently pointing at Palau 200 miles ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 18

30 JAN 2014

Happy Chinese New Year from Qingdao! At happy hour we had dumplings to welcome the New Year in and we organised a quiz about China and Chinese culture.  We are hoping that the New Year will bring us more luck in the race and especially Race 9 into Qingdao. It’s still very hot but there is now a nice southern...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 18

30 JAN 2014

Morning all! It's starting to look like our little gambit of heading up north is starting to pay off. I was expecting to be caught in a bit of a wind hole for the majority of last night, but thankfully it didn't really appear, we slowed right down for a few hours and then at around midnight we were able to hoist our li...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 18

30 JAN 2014

After transiting the dreaded Doldrums, the long slog up the Sulu Sea, a drift around in the Bismarck Sea and the painful run north to find wind, we finally have what I call good wind in the right direction. For the first time in over 10 days we have reached 6 knots speed in the direction of the finish line.  We ar...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 18

30 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL Fans and welcome to sailing day 18. Well we are under the mileage of a Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race or a Rolex Fastnet Race until the Sarangani waypoint! It seems like it has been a long time coming but it is now in sight. Despite the forecast the wind has actually built, along with the seas, and ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 18

30 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 107. Finally, late yesterday afternoon, for the first time since we were running up the east coast of Australia two weeks ago, the breeze shifted so that we were able to start running 100% VMG (Velocity Made Good).  In other words, we were able to point directly at where we want t...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 18

30 JAN 2014

The sailing is at last getting better, the squall activity is subsiding and the wind levels mean that we can make good progress without continually slamming the boat into the waves. This is something which is very welcome and add to that some much welcome sunshine and we are very nearly back to Champagne sailing condit...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 18

30 JAN 2014

We have had a good night sailing under clear skies. The wind apparently is playing to our plan for once, so fingers crossed. Our recent engineering troubles are now under hand - the generator is up and running and a main engine problem concerning the lubrication system seems to be solved for the time being. We passed w...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 18

30 JAN 2014

Hello world! Two weeks and five days it has taken us to get this far. The first five days were great reaching weather towards the Scoring Gate, but from there on we have been beating the weather for 14 days. In the beginning it was still pleasant as the wind was not that strong and the sea was flat, but the last week h...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 18

30 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! We had a relatively good day yesterday making almost 140 miles towards the finish line. I say relatively as usually a good day consists of at least 240 miles towards the finish line but going upwind on a Clipper 70 is like going up a steep hill on an old school bus...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 18

30 JAN 2014

As predicted yesterday we are now flying along under spinnaker and full mainsail at good speed and on course for the next waypoint. The weather forecast hasn't been entirely correct as last night we found a wind hole that wasn't meant to be there. According to the forecast there was a wind hole but approximately 40 mil...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 17

29 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 17. Well the conditions have moderated a bit. The wind is still on the nose and we are still beating but at least we are not crashing off the tops of large waves. We are still in a climbing frame but not one that moves randomly. The sun has also come out which always ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 17

29 JAN 2014

Oh the difference a day can make. The dark cloud that has been hanging over us has lifted (figuratively and literally), the sun is out, the seas and wind have died down, and we again have our biggest upwind sails up and all our gear is coming on deck to air out. Even my smile  no longer resembles the permanent gri...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 17

29 JAN 2014

It’s time to start heading west.  Last night after heading north it started to take us further away from the next waypoint so we tacked south west and climbed a place on the leaderboard and made good gains on the rest of the fleet. We were hoping for a more westerly course but the wind did not fill in as for...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 17

29 JAN 2014

Morning all! Life on the ocean waves is very different today, nice flat sea, glorious sunshine, and not a squall cloud in sight. We had a brilliant night sailing last night under a star strewn sky, some of the first stars we've seen in a long while having been under a thick blanket of cloud for what seems like forever....

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 17

29 JAN 2014

As another Tuesday comes and goes at sea, I wonder what everyone else is up to.  Did they see the sun set over the Pacific Ocean, lighting up the small clouds like glowing red embers?  Did they see the Cheshire cat grin of a moon slide up into the sky during the small hours of the night, scooping up the start...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 17

29 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 106.  The good ship Invest Africa has now got her digital connection to the outside world back up and running! The breeze began to ease off yesterday evening, so we changed from the Yankee 3 to the Yankee 2 to keep us moving overnight.  Not long before dawn the breeze dropped...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 17

29 JAN 2014

Finally the wind has abated enough to allow some well-deserved quality sleep to be had by most crew; the sun is back out, the sea state is moderating and the mood on board is immediately lifting. Looking at the weather forecast, we should now be in for a few days of lighter weather, all be it still from an inconvenient...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 17

29 JAN 2014

The sun is out, the sea has calmed down somewhat and the breeze is perfect for a full set of sails. The wind hasn’t quite shifted around to the west yet to give us favour to the finish line as yet, but we are hopeful it is imminent. So today is a much better day on board PSP Logistics. It certainly has been the m...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 17

29 JAN 2014

Hello world! It looks like we are finally free from the heavy beating, up wind conditions. Now the ‘Navigator’ is cruising upwind with her full set of white sails, only the now and then squall sets the crew in motion, which normally involves putting a reef in the mainsail, or in worst case scenario dropping...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 17

29 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Conditions have continued to ease through yesterday and last night and you could now go almost as far as to say it was pleasant again. No more slamming, much more reasonable heel angle, blue skies and warm sunshine. The frustration of trying to make north in a slac...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 17

29 JAN 2014

The bad news is we didn't tack yesterday after all so my bunk remains on the high side of the boat! The good news is that finally it looks like the weather is going to give us a break and our tactics to keep heading north will pay off handsomely. If the forecast is correct, and that is a big 'if' in this part of the wo...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 16

28 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day sixteen. Well it is a close fought battle at the moment with Derry~Londonderry~Doire close off our starboard side and GREAT Britain just over the horizon I believe. The conditions continue to be uncomfortable though it does seem that the wind and sea have moderated ju...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 16

28 JAN 2014

We are currently still heading north, and as we head north most of the other teams are heading south west tacking towards the gate. As we continue to head north our distance to finish will stay the same until we tack. After this I would expect to see our Velocity Made Good (VMG) go down. We are hoping that the wind wil...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 16

28 JAN 2014

Morning all! Life on the climbing frame has been as sticky as ever the last 24 hours. Waking up in puddles of one’s own sweat, a great new game called compare the rash, as well as a healthy dose of slamming, crashing and heat, then you can get an idea of what conditions are like on board at the moment. The wind i...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 16

28 JAN 2014

It's going to be a shortish blog today as I've just been assisting our Medic Dr Doug Wong  (Legs 2 to 6) patching up our Bowman Vincent Janetta’s shin which he gashed on deck.  Luckily it didn't need amputating and just one stitch was deemed necessary for the small wound.  For the record, he was ex...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 16

28 JAN 2014

Well what a 24 hours! We thankfully have had a considerable reduction in the level of convective activity (squalls) but have still had wind in the 30 to35 knot range for the entire time with a sea state to match. This means that the good ship GREAT Britain continues to take a battering from all sides and remains the ad...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 16

28 JAN 2014

Today was supposed to be a good day. As all that has happened is we have been sent a long list of challenges to deal with. This race it hard enough, with the relentless beating up wind, large seas, the crew dealing with the upwind conditions as we slowly but surely slip away from the leaders. We are sailing well, be we...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 16

28 JAN 2014

Hello world! Day sixteen and we are still tacking towards our finish line. This morning we tacked back up north to get the best use of the weather and wind direction, with the low pressure area travelling around. All is well on board the ‘Navigator’, but the crew is ready for some different weather with les...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 16

28 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! I hope I'm not speaking too soon by saying that things are beginning to settle down from the last few days of relentless pounding the crew and boat have been taking. Certainly the forecast points towards a general easing of wind speed to a point where we'll all be ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 16

28 JAN 2014

It's not often I have a moan but right now I feel like having one. It's all about this business of living at an extreme angle in extreme heat with the boat slamming into waves. Nobody minds for a few hours or even a day or two but now it is no longer fun. What makes it worse is the fact that my bunk is on the wrong sid...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 15

27 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day fifteen. Well what a blow. We were in yet again for a "special" weather phenomenon and it did not disappoint! We had both GREAT Britain and Derry~Londonderry~Doire cross our bow this morning before we tacked and joined them on a starboard tack. They are not that far a...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 15

27 JAN 2014

Sailing old school style. Our active radar reflector detached itself from the top of the mast, and in swinging around has knocked off our wind indicator. The loss of the masthead windex is a bit of a pain and means we will really have to go back to basics and sail this boat like a dinghy, by feel. All is fine on board....

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 15

27 JAN 2014

We are still heading north for the time being, with the tacking angles still poor we will have to sail double the distance to make any gains on the fleet to the west, so we are going to wait until the angle gets better which will hopefully be in the next 24 hours.  We do have a plan and tactic for this race which ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 15

27 JAN 2014

Morning all, well sometimes a leader has to get his hands dirty and yesterday was one of those days. The wind has been building from the north west up to a lively 25 knots. I thought I would prepare for this by having the Yankee 3, our smallest headsail, attached to the forestay in good time for the increasing wind. Th...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 15

27 JAN 2014

So it seems the plan to head north early may have been a good one, had we put our foot down a little more, we would have made good gains on the fleet. However looking at our speeds, with no nearby competition and plenty of distractions we were slightly off full race pace.  Never mind, we have a well-rested crew, s...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 15

27 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 104.  Another day of continual bashing and smashing our way upwind. We still have plenty of wind, and it’s still coming from exactly where we want to go! Overnight it became apparent that there was a problem developing with the leech line (a thin line within the sail that al...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 15

27 JAN 2014

Well, after some 1,800 miles of ocean racing and all of our tactical ups and downs, we find ourselves back within 6 miles of Derry~Londonderry~Doire and 10 miles of OneDLL. Thankfully this time we are just in front at least, but I really was hoping for a slightly larger buffer after our run north, but last night's inte...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 15

27 JAN 2014

Boom, crack, boom crash - and it continues all day and all night, every day every night. As with every boat in the fleet, the upwind slog is becoming Groundhog Day -stuck between sail plans. sometimes it dies off, up goes the staysail, then 30 seconds later, it is too windy, down again... sometimes you get a flat part ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 15

27 JAN 2014

Hello world! Day 15 and we are cruising along, or shall I say, bashing our way to windward, the wind is more constant now and the squall activity is much less. Even though the wind is still almost as strong we added some sail to get a better drive through the waves and a touch more boat speed. Midday we tacked from a p...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 15

27 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! After another good, if a little bumpy nights progress, we have tacked over and are heading south west back towards the rhumb line. We currently have GREAT Britain below and ahead by about six miles and OneDLL behind by about the same distance. GREAT Britain were un...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 15

27 JAN 2014

'All Right'. We have finally crossed back into the Northern Hemisphere crossing the Equator at 23:55 UTC on 26 January. It wasn't exactly the glorious trade wind sailing conditions under blue sky and bright sunshine that we experienced as we crossed the Equator on Race 2 from Brest to Rio de Janeiro. Instead it was ver...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 14

26 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day fourteen. Well we have crossed the Equator! It is unlike any Equator crossing I have done before in that it is blowing 35 knots on the nose. So according to our weather guru Simon Rowell we are really privileged to be in this because it is very rare for it to be this ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 14

26 JAN 2014

If you were to have asked how I expected we would be celebrating our Equator crossing, it would not have been bashing into a gale. It has been a wet, rough, and wild night and now continuing into day. As we come down off the steepest waves, every loose item on board comes crashing down after being temporarily airborne,...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 14

26 JAN 2014

Welcome Qingdao back to the Northern Hemisphere but what a fight it has been to get here so far. The wind has now built to a good 25 knots and the sea state to 3 to 6 metres last night. As the wind built we went from the Yankee1 to our Yankee 2 and our reefed mainsail, but this morning we realised that the Yankee sheet...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 14

26 JAN 2014

Morning all! Finally some consistent breeze is back. Last night we saw a very large squall cell come towards us, more than 20 miles in length full of lightning flashes, deep peals of thunder, as well as torrential rain. As my esteemed colleague Race Director Justin Taylor would say, a bit of cheekiness was on its way, ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 14

26 JAN 2014

Whooah!  For sure, the Leg 5 brochure does not read like this:  As you cross the Equator you will be sailing in typical, sunny tropical weather, not typically 85 knots of wind across the decks, 6 metre waves, driving rain and huge squalls every couple of hours. What is going on? The hardened Leg 3 crew on boa...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 14

26 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 103. Well after an eternity of very little or no wind we now have loads of it...but guess what?  Yep you got it; it’s still coming from exactly where we want to go. Last night the breeze built and for the first time on this race had to change from our Yankee 1 to a smaller h...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 14

26 JAN 2014

Word of the day for today has to be tired! Both the crew and I have worked tirelessly for the last 24 hours battling squall after squall after squall, some bringing 50 knots plus of wind and all bringing torrential rain! Add to the mix that in between squalls we have been beating into a gradient wind of 30 knots, with ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 14

26 JAN 2014

We probably stayed on the rhumb line a little too long, and it shows in our slide down the leaderboard. We are making tracks as fast as we can to the Northern Hemisphere, hoping that our westerly position might help us out. At the moment it isn't too pretty, but it is a long slog still just to get to the Philippines! T...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 14

26 JAN 2014

Hello world! Wow, there is some epic sailing going on this moment, I thought we left the Bass Strait and all the gales behind, but it seems the Pacific has got his own tricks as well. Since yesterday afternoon we have found ourselves in a building wind. During the last 24 hours a lot of sail changes have taken place. W...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 14

26 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! I'm proud to report that as of 0024 UTC this morning, we passed (slammed) back into theNorthern Hemisphere. I'm struggling to remember the date we crossed the Equator in the Atlantic Ocean but I guess it was sometime last October. It feels like an age ago and so mu...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 14

26 JAN 2014

'All Right'. The wind has finally returned and with a vengeance from exactly the direction we want to go at 25 to 30 knots. Added to this we are still battling a 2 to3 knot head current all of which makes for very slow progress. I reckon we are currently making something like a hundred miles a day in the right directio...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 13

25 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day thirteen... Well done to Derry~Londonderry~Doire and Old Pulteney for getting the best of us last night. It was painful, the wind died for us all and I was watching us all go backwards giving up hard earned miles to the current. The reason we lost the lead however was...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 13

25 JAN 2014

We seem to have transitioned from yesterday's squall driven wind to the return of the north west monsoon. We are no longer becalmed, nor are we able to take the big wind shifts that would lift us to the finish. I am not sure which is preferable, the steady but slow progress we are now making or the big spurts we were m...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 13

25 JAN 2014

Well up to a few hours ago we were still making little way with light winds and then from nowhere the wind built to 15 knots from the north west and we are off again, even if it is only for 10 minutes at a time. Qingdao is back at 35 degrees on board which is taking some getting used to, but as long as this wind holds ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 13

25 JAN 2014

Morning all! Apologies for the brevity of yesterday’s blog. We had a bit going on at the time! The majority of last night saw fickle winds which were very variable in both their direction and their strength. However, come this morning we have a nice and steady 10 knots of breeze from the north west which is sucki...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 13

25 JAN 2014

Life in the trade winds is good; it's life on the high side, life on the wild side, steady now, that's making it sound fast! We have been trucking north in search of the trade winds and have found them, as marked by the sky's fluffy cotton wool ball clouds.  Progress is not without its squally hindrances though an...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 13

25 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 102.  Finally we currently seem to have something resembling consistent breeze.  There is not a lot of it and it’s from a rubbish direction but it’s better than nothing at all! Looking at our situation with regards to the position we are in the fleet it seemed qui...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 13

25 JAN 2014

Well much to everyone's excitement, last night saw us cross the Equator and bid farewell to the Southern Hemisphere. Now I can't promise that the weather may not mean that we actually cross it southwards again before this race is out. But at the moment, if the crystal ball that is the weather forecast is to be believed...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 13

25 JAN 2014

So, last night would have to be one of the hardest, longest sailing nights ever! I say the word "sailing" loosely, the only thing close to it was the fact we are on a sailing boat! After the water spouting cloud yesterday, we watched Henri Lloyd sail off. We were clearly on the wrong side of the cloud. We had very litt...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 13

25 JAN 2014

Hello world! Sailing day 13 and we are back at the top again, after another long, long night drifting in company of OneDLL and Derry ~Londonderry ~Doire. After 6 hours drifting, mainly backwards, we finally got the ‘Navigator’ (the name of our ship) moving forward in the right direction. Derry~Londonderry ~...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 13

25 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Another day of close racing with OneDLL and Old Pulteney yesterday was followed by another park-up last night. The three of us sat within a few miles of each other all drifting backwards at the same rate. Somehow it doesn't seem as frustrating when you do it in com...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 13

25 JAN 2014

'All Right'. Well, guess what. Yes, you're right, it has been yet another 24 hours of frustratingly light winds and very slow progress on board Jamaica Get All Right. Still we have made some progress in the right direction and remain doggedly determined to keep pushing hard and hopefully gain a few places up the leader...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 12

24 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day twelve. Well it has once again been a day of light winds and gains made by the back runners of the fleet. We are all experiencing the light conditions but it does seem (certainly according to my weather) that this wind hole is going to be the worst in terms of duratio...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 12

24 JAN 2014

Squalls, and downpours, and waterspouts, oh my! What a busy 24 hours it has been. I have never experienced weather quite like this, it seems never ending. Every time I put my head down its another call of ‘squall’, usually phrased as, "sorry to bother you again skipper, but...” Now I'm getting pretty ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 12

24 JAN 2014

Rain, rain and more rain has visited us today and very little wind to count, until a passing squall hits us and then we get 10 minutes of wind. We then tack a few time's and then drift and wait for the next one. Our tactic of going a bit offshore and trying to find some wind from the forecast has not worked and the ins...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 12

24 JAN 2014

Morning all! A busy 24 hours with quite a bit of squall activity, involving lots of sails up and sails down and reefs in and reefs out. Over the lunchtime meeting today some of our new joiners did a presentation for us on reefing, just to test whether they had got the steps and the method right. I am pleased to say asi...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 12

24 JAN 2014

I think it may be getting a little cooler.  The chart table is only 32 degrees today and the full cloud cover associated with this monsoonal area is helping keep the on deck team shaded and the down below team rested. Last night we were hit by a huge squall. It engulfed Henri Lloyd, PSP Logistics and ourselves who...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 12

24 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 101.  Well we are not really that far from where we were this time yesterday, but thankfully we have moved far enough that we can no longer see Long Island.  There is still plenty of land in sight though.  We have been slowly making our way to the north of the interestin...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 12

24 JAN 2014

Well for those of you who solved my puzzle yesterday, well done and for those of you who didn't manage, without further delay here is the answer: The man first takes the chicken to Bat Island, he then rows back to Rat Island and collects the grain which he then takes over to Bat Island. He drops off the grain and picks...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 12

24 JAN 2014

Well what a day of sailing, loads of wind shifts and wind strengths. We had the company of Switzerland and Henri Lloyd all day and all night. We had our noses in front all night until an almighty rain squall. When I say squall, I mean just rain. Surprisingly we had a south east wind all night which meant the ‘Bru...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 12

24 JAN 2014

Hello world! What a race- amazing things happen with frustration and joy hand in hand. Yesterday saw us becalmed most of the day, until very, very slowly the wind returned. Minuscule ripples gathered in patches and the sport was to reach them and glide from patch to patch. Our race companions Derry~Londonderry ~Doire w...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 12

24 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! After a sweltering day of sunburn and sailing very slowly, things picked up yesterday evening with Derry~Londonderry~Doire's second ever 'Date Night'. This one was ably hosted by round the world crew members Susie Redhouse and Conor O'Byrne, our mothers of the day....

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 12

24 JAN 2014

'All Right'. The last 24 hours have been the most productive in terms of miles run that we have had for quite some time. We had a good breeze yesterday afternoon before the wind died overnight and it has been good all morning. We have had the best 24 hour run of the whole fleet which has allowed us to overtake Qingdao ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 11

23 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day eleven. Well it has been another frustrating 24 hours on OneDLL as I am sure you are aware progress has been slow! We were going along fairly well but now we are doing all we can just to make enough way not to get swept back by the current. This is currently happening...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 11

23 JAN 2014

Slow but steady. Painfully slow, yes, but at least we are still moving at a snail’s pace. We had a decent evening yesterday with a squall but since then the wind has dropped off and no more squalls are in sight. We do though have two Clipper 70 yachts in sight, the first time in who knows how long. Switzerland is...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 11

23 JAN 2014

Well after not going anywhere fast the cloud built up out of nowhere and we dropped our windseeker just in time for a 25 knot squall that hit us. We were off again after heavy rain for around 20 minutes and then the wind abated but stayed around 10 knots so we could still sail and in a good direction too. In the next f...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 11

23 JAN 2014

Morning all! The breeze has been a little kinder to us over the last 24 hours, not for the whole period but the last ten hours or so. We have made some good progress and have caught up a little with the back half of the fleet. We are finally in the Vitiaz Strait after a long slog across the Solomon Sea. We have managed...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 11

23 JAN 2014

We are just leaving the Bismarck Sea and have now set a course for north past the chain of volcanic islands that separate the Bismarck from the open Pacific Ocean. Henri Lloyd had been side by side with us all night.  When the wind died we drifted within boat lengths of one another and at one point I thought I mig...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 11

23 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 100! Today is our 100th day at sea since leaving St Katharine Docks in London way back in September last year and we have come a long, long way since then, both in terms of mileage and experience of the team. Progress is still patience testingly slow out here.  The number of mile ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 11

23 JAN 2014

I often get criticised for writing too little about the lighter side of life on board, so I thought rather than writing about languishing in a windless expanse or violent squalls or tornados, I would instead tell you all about happy hour today! In general, when the weather is clement, all crew are on watch from 12.30 t...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 11

23 JAN 2014

Dramas on the high sea! Attention! We have no wind...well, like us all out here, it is starting to wear thin, the lack of breeze, the lack of progress and more than enough current to send us back where we came from. Last night had promise written all over it, but once again, it was a tease. We had a great sparring sess...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 11

23 JAN 2014

Hello world! Yesterday saw us racing Derry~Londonderry~Doire, neck and neck again, until this morning. We decided to tack and head for land and our rhumb line. This gave us a slight advantage to them, but now, we are stuck in no wind and we are actually going backwards with 1 knot of current. So this is it, parked next...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 11

23 JAN 2014

Our match race with Old Pulteney continued last night sometimes reaching speeds in excess of 3 knots but never separating by more than a mile or two. Eventually they tacked off this morning and headed inshore. We kept edging north, north, west and have just now run out of steam after averaging 1.5 knots all day. Exhila...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 11

23 JAN 2014

'All Right'. Progress continues to be painfully slow but the last 24 hours have been slightly less frustrating than the previous day. We have only been fully stopped twice and then for only a couple of hours each time. Due to the very high levels of rainfall in Papua New Guinea there is a lot of debris floating in the ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 10

22 JAN 2014

Last night we decided to take the punt and go inside Long Island. We came across our first squall of the night which seemed to last for ever (4 hours for one watch). This squall was a blessing in disguise as it allowed us to make a great course down the track with some great speeds. The unpredictable thing about squall...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 10

22 JAN 2014

Hello world! And what a world, a small world, ocean racing at its best. We are in a full neck and neck race with Derry~Londonderry~Doire, who  during a mid-afternoon squall today, tacked a mile quicker than us and came very, very close, well done my friend skipper Sean McCarter. As I type enjoying the full power o...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 10

22 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! After bobbing around yesterday morning, the breeze filled in enough to see us make 2 to3 knots with windseeker in the afternoon. It’s amazing that we made more significant gains on the leaders during that sort of sailing than we did the previous night while w...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 10

22 JAN 2014

'All Right'. After six hours of going backwards on the current yesterday the breeze finally came back and we got going under full mainsail and windseeker. Last night was dominated by squalls, massive wind shifts and calms so progress remained slow but in the right direction. This morning we found ourselves becalmed aga...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 10

22 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day ten. We are currently making slow but steady progress up the coast of Papua New Guinea. The wind is not in the best direction for us and often shifts about as a squall passes nearby. Still there is wind so we are not complaining. There is a huge amount of cloud about ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 10

22 JAN 2014

I've been told if you have nothing good to say then better to say nothing, so I'll keep this one short. No wind. We have seen lots of shipping; we saw one ship was headed for Qingdao, China and thought about asking for a lift. Another was headed for Newcastle, Australia so I guess we are indeed on the coal route. A squ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 10

22 JAN 2014

Well we are still in the same place we were 5 hours ago as I write this. This morning we had other yachts on are AIS (Automatic Identification System) just north of Long Island. We had good wind for that time and course to drop south of Long Island and make up some ground on them but just as we got to the south of the ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 10

22 JAN 2014

Morning all! It's been another 24 hours of very little wind. We haven't seen much more than 2 knots all day and the majority of last night so progress has been very slow. Even stranger is the little wind we have is coming from exactly the opposite direction than the forecast, meaning we are trying to go down wind in th...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 10

22 JAN 2014

There is no predicting when the wind will arrive, where it will come from and when it will leave again. It's been stop start for the last day as we have been sailing past the volcanic islands north of Papua New Guinea. The adventurer in me wants to stop and discover these islands whose fringes are uncharted and anchora...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 10

22 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 99. FREEDOM...FREEEEDOM!  Finally, after another slow hellish 24 hours we have made it out of the clutches of the Solomon Sea.  As I write we are just making our way north out of the Vitiaz Strait. The breeze continued to play cruel games with us yesterday and over the course...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 10

22 JAN 2014

After a long day bobbing around yesterday, the wind finally filled in towards evening and we at last started to see respectable speeds appearing on the instruments which were indeed a relief to all after spending most of the day bobbing around waiting for wind! The downside was that I knew from speaking to Sean McCarte...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 9

21 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day nine. Well from the Race Viewer  you can see that progress has been slow. It appears that Long Island is aptly named as we have spent a long time around it. Until the next schedule comes in I really don't have any idea how we are doing against the rest of the fle...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 9

21 JAN 2014

Becalmed again, and currently being sucked back down the Vitiaz Strait. Lots and lots of commercial shipping is in this channel so not really a good place to have no steerage way. We have been playing 'Frogger' with the ships most of the morning, yet I doubt we could tack now if we tried. Most of the ships seem to be h...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 9

21 JAN 2014

Well we could go on about the lack of wind and having to beat in a small and very busy shipping lane trying to get out of the Solomon Sea and into the Bismarck Sea. But what I can say, we have a great view of Papua New Guinea and the green slopes and high hills covered in clouds, there is not a lot of people who can sa...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 9

21 JAN 2014

Morning all! Slow has been the word for the last 24 hours, we have had a very frustrating mix of favourable winds, pushing us along in vaguely the right direction, with a more than unfair batch of no wind, or downright unfavourable wind. At one stage last night the tacking angles were so bad that we had a choice of eas...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 9

21 JAN 2014

Last night we beat through a bumpy Vitiaz Strait, littered with monsoonal vegetation debris and cargo ships making their way determinedly between the continents. It wasn't until dawn that the landscape surrounding the straits could be seen and we tacked in close to the shores of Papua New Guinea for a sneaky peak. ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 9

21 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 98. It’s been rather uneventful since yesterday’s blog.  The headsails have been up and down a few times due to either a lack, or a lot of wind.  A few reefs have been tucked in to, and shaken out of our mainsail.  We have had a few light squalls and thankful...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 9

21 JAN 2014

Today's word of the day has none of the punch of yesterdays and is I am afraid ‘becalmed’ as that is what we find ourselves at the moment! After a really good afternoon and overnight sail in good solid winds that saw us make excellent progress along the race course, breakfast time today brought us extremely...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 9

21 JAN 2014

Finally! We are here, in the Vitiaz Strait. It isn’t a mythical place after all...It has been the most challenging sailing to get this point so far. Last night saw us make some really good gains on the front runners. Surprisingly, we have a fair amount of wind last night. So much we actually had to change from ou...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 9

21 JAN 2014

Hello world! Today we live life in slow motion, yesterday was great sailing weather with full on racing to stay ahead of the fleet. Last night even gave us more wind than needed and we dropped the Yankee 1 for a while to let the squall pass by without getting surprised by it. It was a particular dark night that made it...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 9

21 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Sometimes we have a joke on board that my mood is directly proportional to boat speed. Today I proved that this is only a joke, otherwise I would be more angry and frustrated than I've been since Race 2 in the Doldrums! We have covered less than 5 miles in the past...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 9

21 JAN 2014

'All Right'. Today is a little like Groundhog Day so I will re quote the first line of yesterday’s blog as not a lot has changed since this then: 'it has been another very frustrating 24 hours on board Jamaica Get All Right.' The wind has been extremely fickle and most of the time non-existent..! To be fair we ha...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 8

20 JAN 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day eight. So we worked really hard and caught up with Old Pulteney and Derry~Londonderry~Doire. We were all sailing in sight of one another. Then we hit a squall...as I write this Derry~Londonderry~Doire and I are drifting backwards away from the Vitiaz Strait which is a...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 8

20 JAN 2014

We have been going through a massive rainstorm for most of the day, squalls, huge wind shifts, calms, and lots and lots of rain. It was great at first to get a shower on deck but now that I can't get any cleaner enough is enough. It's good to know it is not always hot in the tropics, and today has been a nice respite f...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 8

20 JAN 2014

Rain, squall and more rain has been the weather for the last 24 hours we have put in some good miles towards the waypoint but so has the rest of the fleet. We find ourselves once again beating back towards to the next waypoint being over 100 miles behind the lead yachts and we hope after they get to the next waypoint w...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 8

20 JAN 2014

Morning all! It's been a hot, humid and wet 24 hours here on Mission Performance. A reasonable amount of squall activity overnight gave us an absolute dousing. The flip side is that the wind has been more favourable than not so we have actually been making pretty good progress and from the last schedule I received we a...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 8

20 JAN 2014

I have a love/hate relationship with squalls, and that is being generous as it's mostly hate.  They usually arrive with a burst of wind to knock the boat flat then steal every breath back as the rain arrives to soak you through in seconds.   They can hang overhead for hours, whilst you wallow trying to g...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 8

20 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 97. Spirits are still high on board Invest Africa but the light winds continue to hamper our progress. Late evening yesterday after tucking in reef 1 we noticed a small tear in the very front edge of our mainsail.  Upon closer inspection, I discovered that the damage would not be ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 8

20 JAN 2014

OK, now for those reading at home, brace yourselves but rest assured that by the end of my story all on board are ok and so is the good ship GREAT Britain! My word of the day for today has absolutely no competition; it just has to be Tornado! So this would have been a blog about the continuing frustration of wind holes...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 8

20 JAN 2014

Another wet and squally day in the Solomon Sea! We have had a trying night again, with a lot of squalls and rain...well, trying to dodge them as much as possible. Since we cannot use the first reef at the moment, we are squall dodging as much as possible and trying to stay in consistent wind. Our track is starting to f...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 8

20 JAN 2014

Hello world! Today the topic is rain, ranging from local showers (only on your boat and nowhere else), drizzle, dripping, downpour, drenching. Amazing how that works, our fine ship the 'Navigator' is refreshed and so is her crew, we have been soaked, air dried, mainsail washed and dried again. We had been talking about...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 8

20 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Last night was much more relaxed than the previous one, so much so that I managed to grab seven or eight hours of almost uninterrupted sleep. This is almost unheard of and partially due to steadier conditions but mostly to the crew and watch leaders doing a great j...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 8

20 JAN 2014

Skipper's blog 'All Right'. It has been another very frustrating 24 hours on board Jamaica Get All Right. The wind has been extremely fickle and most of the time non-existent. According to the weather forecasts we are meant to be beating into 15 knot headwinds, yet this morning we spent several hours reaching with the ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 7

19 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day seven. I am sorry that there was not a blog yesterday. Unfortunately our inverter (this is a machine that turns battery power into household voltage) decided to die. This means a number things on the yacht would not work. Most importantly it meant that the computer sc...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 7

19 JAN 2014

I am no saint but I will have to have the patience of one to get through this leg. Last night we did 15 miles in 12 hours, most of that was in a couple hours around a massive area of thunderstorms. I’m just glad that most frustrating of days is behind us. We now have wind again and are moving and as we begin agai...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 7

19 JAN 2014

The last 24 hours have been much of the same  but with less wind. We had a great heading for a few hours but at only a few knots whilst it still looks like the lead yachts have been making better way than us and have put on more miles between us over the last 24 hours. Our only hope now in catching them is that we...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 7

19 JAN 2014

Morning all! So I got my wish, there has been almost zero 'excitement' in the last 24 hours. There was one squall last night which was a tad energetic, but otherwise it's been plain sailing. The wind is very light at the moment so shortly after yesterday's blog, I decided that although the Yankee 3 was doing a valiant ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 7

19 JAN 2014

With such a short stopover in Brisbane and such a long leg to prepare for, I knew there might be a few provisioning issues which are now starting to materialise. Firstly there was margarine-gate.  A gross over order of margarine has been enthusiastically stowed by the crew in Brisbane in what we discovered to be a...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 7

19 JAN 2014

Frustration is definitely still the keyword of this leg. Weather forecasts are practically useless as most of the gains are to be made through squall systems and the wind shifts that they bring, neither of which are predictable, so for someone like me who likes nothing more than to stare at weather forecasts for hours ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 7

19 JAN 2014

After a night of tight racing and some very good gains in very light tricky weather, we tacked off to stick to our plan of rhumb line tacking. As it turned out, we have lost quite a few miles to the front pack, one of which it will be hard to claw our way back up. This morning, the weather charts have given us a bright...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 7

19 JAN 2014

Hello world! Nothing comes for free in water world, except the squalls, lightning and thunder. Last night just after dark we ended up in a massive thunder and lightning cloud. It did not bring massive winds, but it gave a tremendous show, the intensity of the light blinded our night vision the moment the bolts came dow...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 7

19 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Well if we thought yesterday was wet, last night was off the chart! There was one point where I wish we'd had snorkel and masks for the 'on watch' crew. We didn't need to calculate how close the lightning was as it was right above us for about 45 minutes with a gra...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 7

19 JAN 2014

'All Right'. Cloud hunting is the order of the day. Ordinarily, when in the tropics, I would go out of my way to avoid dark clouds as they invariably bring a dramatic increase in wind and heavy rain. Right now we are glad of any wind and rain so if we see a dark cloud we are trying to position ourselves underneath or n...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 7

19 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 96. It has been another slow and frustrating day aboard the good ship Invest Africa. We have been forced to spend some time with no headsails up at all due to a complete lack of breeze.  Even the wind seeker refused to stay filled at certain points of the day.  It was just st...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 6

18 JAN 2014

The sun is out, the wind is light, and our progress towards the next waypoint is abysmal. Most good ocean thoroughbreds are made for reaching and running, and the Clipper 70 is no exception. However the course and weather dictate that we must beat into the wind and so we must. Added to this we are fighting an ocean cur...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 6

18 JAN 2014

Qingdao is still beating up wind tacking to make our way to the next waypoint which seems that much farther away. The wind, when there is wind, is coming from the point we need to get too and the tacking angle in light winds is not very good. Frustratingly each heading we try is not allowing us to make good enough head...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 6

18 JAN 2014

Morning all! Well the last 24 hours have been interesting to say the least. In summary - a kamikaze cargo ship driver, an almost snapped main halyard, and a definitely snapped Yankee sheet, as well as some serious squall shenanigans with some pretty heavy gusts. So, the kamikaze cargo ship driver…a vessel was co...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 6

18 JAN 2014

Busy times, tight racing is the order of play in the Solomon Sea! We have been in company of Switzerland, Old Pulteney and OneDLL for the last 30 odd hours. It was as squally shifty dark night last, and suffice to say, I didn’t get much sleep at all, constantly monitoring the competition and the weather. Our litt...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 6

18 JAN 2014

As the squalls continue, the crew are starting to develop the physical symptoms of having been too damp for too long.  These include squall hands - white wrinkled palms similar to the effect when you have been in the bath too long.  Some inter-toe webbing and the first stages of gills have also been observed ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 6

18 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 95. It’s been a very slow and sedate 24 hours in the Solomon Sea.  The steady breeze that carried us so swiftly up the East Coast of Australia seems like a distant memory. We are currently still beating our way towards the nest waypoint on the race course, and frustratingly ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 6

18 JAN 2014

So, thankfully we managed to implement a workaround on the leech line of our mainsail which meant that we only needed to have it on deck for a couple of hours before we re-hoisted it and got ourselves back up to full speed which was fantastic work by all the crew involved. This was very welcome as it meant we did not l...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 6

18 JAN 2014

Hello world! The 'Navigator' is in her element and after a thorough deck wash this morning that lasted at least half an hour as the hot air blower came out to dry her and her crew out. The last 24 hours has been epic racing and saw us coming back from sixth place to second with the crew fully concentrated 24/7 to get e...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 6

18 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Last night we experienced rain that made Northern Ireland look arid in comparison! It reminded me of that scene in Forest Gump when Forest is describing the types of rain in Vietnam; '...one day it started to rain, there was light rain, heavy rain, diagonal rain, i...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 6

18 JAN 2014

'All Right'. It's very hot and sweaty and I'm feeling very frustrated at the weather which is not being very helpful. The wind is very light and fickle and coming from pretty much exactly the direction we want to go in. Added to that is a not insubstantial head current and it all makes for very slow progress. At this r...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 5

17 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day five. Well one word describes today, squalls! We have been hit by some really powerful ones. Most of the time we dropped sails and dealt with them fine. Just before I came down to write this however we went to drop the headsail and low and behold it had a riding turn ...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 5

17 JAN 2014

Sorry for the lack of news from the good yacht Henri Lloyd yesterday. We had a tough go of it through the monsoon trough just before the Scoring Gate. We were just getting going again in the north west winds and there was a lot of sail changes happening on deck to try make up some of the lost time. Since then we have b...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 5

17 JAN 2014

After a hard night racing with lots of wind shifts which sometimes can go unnoticed by the new crew, we are also working without any wind instruments or COG (Course Over Ground) to steer too as they have all deicide that the heat is too much and have gone skiing to cool down. So we are back to old school sailing and th...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 5

17 JAN 2014

Morning all! What a difference 24 hours makes, this time yesterday we were charging along in sublime sailing conditions and now, we are firmly in the clutches of the Intertropical Convergence Zone( ITCZ), or as we more affectionately call it, the ‘Dull-drums.’ Thankfully these should be fairly short lived a...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 5

17 JAN 2014

This morning was a beautiful trade winds type day, fluffy clouds, gentle breeze and ‘Heidi’ (our nickname for the boat) was moving along nicely with her full set of upwind sails on.  We even had a very graceful cross with Old Pulteney, close enough to wave, and got some lovely snaps of them as they sai...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 5

17 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 94.The good the bad and the damn right unbeatable! The past 24 hours have been a mixed bag on board the good ship Invest Africa.  After giving it our all to get a Scoring Gate point, sadly it transpired that we missed out on claiming third through the gate to skipper Patrick Van D...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 5

17 JAN 2014

This is unfortunately going to be a short blog today, after a night of relatively stable weather; we have had a very busy morning with squall after squall, after squall with some bringing winds in excess of 40 knots at very short notice indeed, meaning that we have had to put reefs in and out time and time again. Unfor...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 5

17 JAN 2014

It’s a short blog today as I have just been battling a very large squall, large wind shifts, wind speed 0 to 30 knots, reef in reef out reef in reef out. Then the reefing line tangled, and then we managed to untangle the reefing lines, reef in reef out. My hands are now prune like, absolutely soaked to the bone. ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 5

17 JAN 2014

Hello world! We are now sailing the Solomon Sea, and the way we are going it will take a long, long time. Currently we are beating to windward making best course and speed towards the way point what is still 400 miles away which is measured in a straight line, we just have done eleven of these in 3 hours. That means 4 ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 5

17 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Well after a seamless trip through the monsoon trough yesterday and a breezy night last night where we actually had to reef down, the light and fluky stuff finally caught up with us this morning. We had a few hours of some of the more frustrating sailing that we've...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 5

17 JAN 2014

'All Right'. Apologies for the short blog yesterday but there was lot's going on up on deck with a spinnaker coming down and headsails going up. This was just after passing through the Scoring Gate and just at the time I had to send in my blog. Overnight we deliberately sailed as close to the wind as we possibly could ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 4

16 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans! Welcome to sailing day four! Well it appears we may have got second through the Scoring Gate and picked up two points (subject to ratification from the Race Office) we had a hard battle with Old Pulteney and Switzerland and despite those yachts eating away regularly at our lead we managed to p...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 4

16 JAN 2014

Well the wind has gone from a nice south east 20 knots to a variable 5 to10 knots and each squall that passes brings new wind and from a new direction making sail trimming and deciding which sail to use hard. we have gone from our Yankee 1 to windseeker back to Yankee 1 in a few hours and now trying to get to the Scori...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 4

16 JAN 2014

Morning all! Again the last 24 hours has epitomised great sailing, this is why we do it, and this is what we signed up for, in fact, if sailing were like this all the time then everybody would do it! We have been racking up some great miles with around 280 miles in the last 24 hours which has seen us sneak some miles o...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 4

16 JAN 2014

You win some and you lose some.  Another day and another Scoring Gate fate was dealt.  Congratulations to Derry~Londonderry~Doire who stole the show and to OneDLL and Old Pulteney who have now twice in a row scooped the points convincingly. We thought we might be lucky and overtake Old Pulteney with an early ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 4

16 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 93.  Well not a lot had happened up until about three hours ago, and then boy oh boy did we get busy. Last night (Invest Africa time) we were about 70 miles from the Scoring Gate and in close proximity to OneDLL, Old Pulteney and Switzerland, and we were all pretty much running th...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 4

16 JAN 2014

Our Champagne sailing continued for a third day with us finally being able to exchange our white sails for spinnakers as the wind freed a little and allowed us to power on towards the Scoring Gate. Unfortunately we were a little delayed hoisting our spinnaker as we noticed that a small bit of stitching had been missed ...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 4

16 JAN 2014

Westerly’s are welcome any time! Finally, a cooling breeze... we are marching along to the mandatory Scoring Gate at Adel Island just off Papa New Guinea. Flat water, 15 knot close reach. It is very welcome after a tough night of light wind sailing and decision making. We had a magic kite run yesterday, that saw ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 4

16 JAN 2014

Hello world! Looks like we made it all right through the Scoring Gate. It has been busy on the ‘Navigator’ the last 24 hours, with a big variety of spinnakers, all of them passed the revue when the wind lightened overnight. We battled hard with our rival OneDLL and sometimes came very near them, near enough...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 4

16 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Shortly after 0900am (local time) this morning we passed through the Scoring Gate that we've been aiming for since the start. We are still waiting on confirmation but are quietly confident that we managed to sneak through before our rivals and pick up the maximum t...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 4

16 JAN 2014

'All Right'. Sorry but this is an extremely short blog. Suffice to say we have just passed through the Scoring Gate, though I don't believe we have won any points, and all is well on board. Got to dash as needed on deck for a sail change. Until tomorrow, Pete.    ...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 3

15 JAN 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day three. Did I mention it is hot! It is 34 degrees down below as I write this. The new crew have been integrating well. Getting to know the yacht systems, getting to know our procedures and generally just getting used to yacht life. At the moment things have been a litt...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 3

15 JAN 2014

Sailing with a kite up is so much more fun than reaching along under Yankee. The trade winds were meant to be followed, not crossed. The crew on deck are happy (let's not talk about the sweaty bodies down below) and we are rotating positions around giving them a chance at helming and trimming downwind under kite. We ar...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 3

15 JAN 2014

I am sure it is the same for all the other yachts but it’s hot, hot, hot below deck's again and to help to that  our battery charger has stop working so we are having to rotate between our engine which means using fuel that we may need later in this leg which is also adding heat into the oven that is Qingdao...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 3

15 JAN 2014

Morning all! The Champagne sailing has continued over the last 24 hours with boat speeds rarely under 13 knots which means progress has been fairly good to say the least! It's looking like we shall keep this favourable weather pretty much until we hit the first Scoring Gate. During our second team meeting of the race, ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 3

15 JAN 2014

It’s hot in here - 36 degrees in the chart table, hot enough that my last bar of chocolate has not just melted, its separated! Temperatures are soaring and with the boat windows still closed due to constant waves over the deck it’s near unbearable.  Do I dare mention the smell!  Oh boy! Those who ...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 3

15 JAN 2014

The near constant south east trade winds continue to blow and the air temperature continues to rise as we press on north towards Papua New Guinea and the first mark of the course. We are still sailing under a relatively conservative sail plan whilst we continue to bring our new joiners up to speed and make sure everyon...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 3

15 JAN 2014

Morning all! Another short blog due to computer problems. We have had a good battle with our old foe GREAT Britain for the last 36 hours. The wind is up and down with the direction change here and there. This afternoon, we took the opportunity to hoist a shy kite. We had it rigged since dawn, and as soon as the opportu...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 3

15 JAN 2014

Hello world! Hot is the word today, whilst the water temperature is rising to 30 degrees now, the sun is pounding on us the whole day and inside is like a sauna, because we cannot open the port holes due to the occasional wave. Our round the world crew member Ross Ham did a great job gluing our gator back on, so that w...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RCAE 8 DAY 3

15 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! If only all sailing could be done in the trade winds! We've been making great progress towards the Scoring Gate which is now about 150 miles to our north. It's probably a little too soon to start complaining about the heat but I will anyway! We have six small port ...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 3

15 JAN 2014

'All Right'. It's very hot and it is only going to get hotter. It is pleasant enough on deck except for the burning rays of the Australian sun; factor 50 sun cream slapped on any exposed skin is definitely the order of the day. However down below it is stifling with the temperature close to 40 degrees and no air. We ca...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 2

14 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day two. It is hot! Wow, what a difference from the Southern Ocean. The water temperature is up at around 28 degrees plus and the air temperature easily gets up into the 30s. It is only going to get hotter as we approach the Equator. Currently we still have a couple of wa...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 2

14 JAN 2014

It is a lovely day to be at sea, fast reaching conditions under a sunny blue sky, warm water flying over the deck soaking our salt encrusted bodies. How nice it is to be back following the trade winds again. It is wonderful to be on deck with the wind on your face and the rays of the sun by day and the nearly full moon...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 2

14 JAN 2014

We have now been on the same sail plan  almost since the start of the Race 8. The wind has been around the same speed apart from the odd squall. Everyone is getting used to the routines on Qingdao with the new crew taking their turns on the helm and mother duties. We had Henri Lloyd just less than a mile behind us...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 2

14 JAN 2014

Morning all! The last 24 hours have been Champagne sailing at its best with a constant 20 knots trade wind on the beam, a nice rolling swell, and decent boat speeds, with the all-important addition of pointing in the right direction! The green monster has been aboard though as some of our new joiners find their sea leg...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 2

14 JAN 2014

As ‘Heidi’ (our nickname for Switzerland) pounds along under white sails on a steady course with little to disrupt our plans other than the odd squall or reef, my thoughts turn back to last night's fruitless kite run...or was it? First let’s start back in Brisbane where seven new joining crew arrived ...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 2

14 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 91.  The breeze has been steady in both strength and direction with only a handful of minor squalls to deal with.  The biggest change in the last 24 hours has definitely been the temperature; the graph on the chart plotter for the sea temperature is currently showing 28.6C!&n...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 2

14 JAN 2014

It has been a perfect days sailing on board PSP Logistics. Strong south east trade winds, power reaching along at speed toward the first Score Gate. This will be tight, tighter than any of the Scoring Gates that have been contested, as the whole fleet is within 15 miles of each other, and the wind is due to stall as we...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 2

14 JAN 2014

Hello world! Just like the brochure said, "downwind sailing round the world in shorts and t-shirts on Old Pulteney's sponsored ship the ‘Navigator’”. We are now sailing on this starboard tack for the last 48 hours and it seems it will last a good while longer. I understand it is still super exiting on...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 2

14 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! All is well on the ‘Derry-go-round’ as we speed towards the scoring gate 450 miles to our north. It looks like we'll have continued Champagne sailing conditions until about 30 miles before the Scoring Gate where we will charge into the first of many win...

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JAMAICA GET ALL RIGHT - PETE STIRLING - RACE 8 DAY 2

14 JAN 2014

'All Right'. First of all apologies for the fact that there was no skippers blog or crew blog yesterday. We had problems with our satellite communication equipment and were incommunicado for the best part of a day and a half. Still, the good news is it is all fixed and back up and running now. Like most things in life,...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 2

14 JAN 2014

What a glorious 24 hours of sailing, 260 miles under our belt of effortless, Champagne sailing, really quite spectacular, the cold battering we took in the Bass Strait is already fading into distant memories and being replaced by the heat and fast sailing that we are currently experiencing as we head north. We are alre...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 8 DAY 1

13 JAN 2014

Good Morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day 1 of what is going to be a long Leg 5! We have been used to some fairly short legs recently but at over 4,000 miles this is going to definitely be a long and hot one! The crew worked hard during the short stopover to get us ready for the next leg. One of the amazing t...

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HENRI LLOYD - ERIC HOLDEN - RACE 8 DAY 1

13 JAN 2014

First day at sea with the new team. The racing remains tight with a few boat still around visually and other quite close on the last schedule. We were one of the few boats that selected taking a more offshore option, hoping it would take us out past the strongest current and into some relief. As it would take us off th...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 8 DAY 1

13 JAN 2014

Well after a very quick stopover to meet the new crew and say good bye to the old crew and friends of Qingdao, the team completed a training morning in Moreton Bay doing lots of reef and MOB (Man Overboard) drills we headed out to the start area for the Le Man's start. So after all the yachts were in a line we started ...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 8 DAY 1

13 JAN 2014

Morning all! Finally out on the race track after our little mishap yesterday. Our 24 volt system failed meaning that none of our systems on board would work, so after trying to fix everything at sea, we had to pull back in to Rivergate Marina in Brisbane so the chief engineer could get us going again. The stopover in B...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 8 DAY 1

13 JAN 2014

The Brisbane stopover was short and sweet, just enough time to get some much needed jobs done and welcome our seven new team members, who I'm pleased to say got stuck in to things straight away. With a late afternoon race start, we had a great opportunity to spend the day in the beautiful Moreton Bay training the new j...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 8 DAY 1

13 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 90.  With Brisbane being another short but sweet stop we are on our way again.  Even though we only had a handful of days ashore we still got all we needed to do finished to prepare Invest Africa for a month at sea.  Australia is as far away from the UK as we get on this...

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GREAT BRITAIN - SIMON TALBOT - RACE 8 DAY 1

13 JAN 2014

Well we are off again, this time heading into the searing heat of the equator and the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) on the Pacific side, before turning west and heading into Singapore. The weather had been kind to us for the first 24 hours, with a constant breeze from the east south east meaning we are making e...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 8 DAY 1

13 JAN 2014

Welcome to Race 8, the Old Pulteney Navigator's Cup Race to Singapore. After a whirlwind stopover in Brisbane we are back at sea, and this race is a marathon indeed. This is the longest races since Race 2 from Brest to Rio de Janeiro, some 4,300 miles. The fleet congregated 5 miles east, east of the north east channel ...

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OLD PULTENEY - PATRICK VAN DER ZIJDEN - RACE 8 DAY 1

13 JAN 2014

Hello World! We are back on the race track after only a few days in Brisbane, where we even quickly nipped on the hard, for a rudder bearing check-up and change, we continued our way north and around. Big thanks to the Ham family, our round the world crew member Ross Ham, his wife Cathy and sister for the good care and...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 8 DAY 1

13 JAN 2014

Good morning sports fans from Derry~Londonderry~Doire! Our last blog was during the arrival into Brisbane about a week ago. We were jostling for first position with Switzerland and OneDLL with the decision of whether or not to risk gybing our newly repaired heavyweight kite. To cut a long story short, we took the chanc...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 7 DAY 6

08 JAN 2014

It’s been a very uneventful 24 hours on Qingdao, the wind has been that little too far forward of the beam so we can’t fly our kites. At times it was a good job as many squalls came over us in the night with wind speeds going from 5 knots to 25 knots in seconds, and with us keeping close to the coast line w...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 7 DAY 6

08 JAN 2014

Morning all! What a fine day it's been with a nice cool breeze wafting us along at speed towards our destination. I would love to say that there is under 100 miles left to go but that would be a lie, but we're not far off it though! The wind has come round behind us a little more from the beam so we have just this minu...

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PSP LOGISTICS - CHRIS HOLLIS - RACE 7 DAY 6

08 JAN 2014

Well, we are nearly there, just running past the last couple of beaches of Moreton Island. We should be alongside the dock in Brisbane in about five hours’ time. I would just like to say thank you to the crew, especially the outgoing crew for a highly entertaining leg. We need a bigger boat to bring you all with ...

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DERRY~LONDONDERRY~DOIRE - SEAN MCCARTER - RACE 7 REPORT

08 JAN 2014

After six full days of full on racing we are delighted to have obtained our second podium finish of the race so far. It goes without saying we gave it our all to get over the line first and I am extremely proud of the crew for pushing themselves to the max. In the end Switzerland beat us to it, so fair play to them and...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 7 REPORT

08 JAN 2014

We were always aiming to get a Scoring Gate point and another podium and that's what we did and we are ecstatic. We had very varied conditions. Light winds, strong winds, wind on the nose and wind from behind and the guys workedvery hard to do many different ...

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SWITZERLAND - VICKY ELLIS - RACE 7 REPORT

08 JAN 2014

We narrowly missed out on the Scoring Gate points and that really gave us the fire and inspiration we needed. We didn’t realise what that had done to us until Derry~Londonderry~Doire popped up behind us 5 miles behind us after a battle to the end. I can’t tell you how good that feels. It was a fan...

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ONE DLL - OLLY COTTERELL - RACE 7 DAY 5

07 JAN 2014

Good morning OneDLL fans and welcome to sailing day six. Well no sooner had I sent my blog in and the head of ‘Havoc’ (our medium weight kite) came clean off. There was no fault of the crew here we were going along quite happily with the crew working well as a team to keep the kite trimmed when I heard the ...

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QINGDAO - GARETH GLOVER - RACE 7 DAY 5

07 JAN 2014

Not a great 24 hours on Qingdao with very light winds and current against us is making it very slow going. The plan is to hug the coast as much as we can to keep out of the warm current heading south and for most of the time that has worked but not with the winds.  However, it looks like it has been much better of...

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MISSION PERFORMANCE - MATT MITCHELL - RACE 7 DAY 5

07 JAN 2014

Morning all! The last 24 hours have seen great sailing conditions with favourable wind and a flat sea. The wind has been a constant 15 to 20 knots from the south which has seen us fly along under our medium weight spinnaker 'Brian', I kept the crew working though with a change to the Yankee 1 overnight as we had to hea...

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INVEST AFRICA - RICH GOULD - RACE 7 DAY 5

07 JAN 2014

Captain’s blog, sailing day 89.  Good morning all, it’s been a fully powered up 24 hours here on board the good ship Invest Africa.  We dropped the medium weight kite late yesterday afternoon to allow us to come a little higher on the breeze to stay out of the East Australia Current (EAC).  T...

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