This is the first diary for Switzerland in Race 2. We slipped lines at 1120 on 9 September and left Europe for South America. There was a distinct sense of anticipation and some heightened emotions as we had our final briefing with Vicky before leaving Brest. We are going to be at sea for over three weeks. That means nearly 4,800 miles of sailing in a variety of different conditions requiring all our sailing skill and ingenuity.
So we left the marina and had quite a low key parade of sail compared to London followed by a fast paced sprint out the start line in the bay. Race start was 1330. We made a bit of a slow start we know why and can improve our sail handling technique for the future with better planning.
Almost immediately the choppy conditions affected some of the crew. Those prone to seasickness began to feel its effects and this during the following evening took around a quarter of the crew out of the equation altogether.
Happily all are now recovered including the two who sustained minor injuries during last night. Karina taking a very nasty hit from a flogging sheet and Marlis who ended up with a cup of hot tea spilt on her side.
Minor war wounds from the campaign both are up and well and joining the watch.
I was on Mother Watch yesterday that was a challenge although I am pleased the way the victualling is working out so far. We have had interesting meals and have the ingredients we need. Hope I am still able to say this in two weeks time.
Mother Watch means you are up and dressed ready to prepare breakfast for 5.30 so the going on watch can eat before watch change at 0600.
Serve the coming off watch clear up prepare lunch for 1130 couscous and all our fresh salad veg from France which needed to be used up. Clear up and prepare dinner meat from our freezer and again veg from London including six cauliflowers, which had to be used up - what do you do?
Why cauliflower surprise of course - It wont make master chef but was well received by the off coming watch, who had had the busiest of times with several head sail changes, and all for 1730 and guess what? Clear up again. Mario and I must have washed up over 60 bowls and forks. Timing is essential and serving all 22 at the right time takes thinking about.
News from the boat include on Monday - it emerged that Ralph had never cooked pasta despite reaching the grand age of 70 we called him the oldest pasta virgin. The Italians on board continue to enjoy expresso coffees from Mario's expresso maker although with the pressure on and the need to focus on racing these have to be squeezed in to quieter periods. Interesting the requests for drink are at certain times now along the lines of 'anything hot' or whatever's available as speed becomes the key factor.
The team is working well - there is high energy and good confidence. We have a regular daily update from Vicky on our sailing strategy. We are now beginning to settle in well to the race.