The start of leg 3 - here we are in the Southern Ocean
Another amazing sight to see all the Clipper 70s in formation parading in front of Table Mountain. We were tucked in, in the middle of the pack and had a great view of the other boats as they went past. The boats were parading in close quarters - the helicopters ready along with the ribs with masses of photographers all aiming to take THAT shot for the brochure. The crews anxious for the start but lining up along the deck side for the shots.
The skippers anxious not to hit the next boat.
And so the fourth race started with the rounding of a couple of buoys placed in Table Bay and then off to Australia. The fleet had to avoid the annoying wind hole just outside the bay - the one we had to navigate on our way in. And then we were flying.
Switzerland were slow off the start line but made a brilliant first 12 hours and were for a while in the top three. We shot off down the coast and rounded the Cape of Good Hope and continued south to avoid the Agulhas bank (shallower water with currents and turbulent water) and to head off down into the Southern Ocean to catch the prevailing winds associated with the low pressure systems that circulate around the base of the planet.
It is the beginning of Day 3 and we have had a sudden baptism of fire from the elements. The morning watch put in two reefs both one and later reef two and changed down from the Yankee 2 to the Yankee 3 in a few hours. The wind is now stronger and the waves are building making big demands on the crew.
Vicky had briefed us carefully about this scenario. No one was surprised. We had planned for sudden wind strength changes so all is going very well. Its been drummed into us about always clipping on and looking after each other and staying safe. The crew recognise this and have been following the rules to the letter. We are a disciplined crew and Vicky is very strict about safety discipline and we all appreciate this approach.Life on board has settled back into its usual routine. The new leggers picking up the way of life vey quickly. We have enjoyed a good start and are looking forward to the rest of the race with excitement.
Good wishes to the students and pupils and their teachers that are following us from many schools and colleges.