Race 2 - Day 14
Crew Diary - Race 2 Day 14: Punta del Este to Cape Town
18 October

Mitesh (Mick) Pattni
Mitesh (Mick) Pattni
Team Garmin
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So close to the finish line that we can almost taste the biltong and beers. I've been so excited to see Table Mountain in the distance as we sail in, that the thought of us coming into Cape Town overnight hadn't even crossed my mind until it became a possiblity. Either way, we'll have some great views of it as we set off for Australia in a couple of weeks time. I was here last year for a short four days, I loved the place and I'm really eager to see more of it.

The vibe on the boat has been so great over the last two weeks, but it seems that the closer we get to land the more people are letting the exhaustion of the leg take over them. I remember that during the final 24 hours of the first leg was the first time that I felt completely exhaused and that came down to a purely mental reaction (almost like dropping your guard to it).

I want to use my blog to write about my crewmates as they are the guys that really make the experience what it is. I would take a great team spirit in difficult times over a bad team spirit in easier times any day of the week.

My watch team has been completely different from Leg 1, with only Mike B (watch leader & very talented sailor) and Keith (Bowman extraordinaire & wearer of the pants of power harness) remaining from the first leg. I had to start from scratch in developing new relationships, creating new inside jokes and getting to know the things that you can use to wind your crewmates up (in a funny way, lol).

Every member of my new watch has been so much fun, but a special shout has to go to new addition, Sarah (hilarious pit queen and reluctant bowman) and David (aka 'Smiffy', aka the funniest bloke on Garmin and possibly Clipper Race). The back and forth banter between the three of us has really made a physically tough leg much more bearable, and at times seriously great fun. Rowena (Iron-woman) says that the three of us are trouble together..... No Comment!

Another new addition is Anders from Sweden, a serious and hardworking man in his 'real' life has seriously let his hair down and is having a better time than he imagined. So much so, that 'Smiffy', Sarah and I are sure he's going to end up in a mental asylum. Art (aka Artur & the man with the *cough* beautiful hair), is always up for a laugh but having hurt his knee and having spent most of his time at the helm, we haven't had the same crack as we normally do. We've got a long old journey ahead of both of us to sort that out.

Finally, special recognition must go to Nell (aka Dr Nell, as she has been a complete soldier on this leg. Nell is the team medic and one of the star helmsman on our watch. During this leg, most the team went down with a bug for between 24-48 hours. As the team medic (who thought she was taking a year off from being a GP) she looked after every one of us as we fell victim to the bug one by one. Not only that, but with Mike B (THE star helmsman) unable to helm with a dodgy wrist to add to the illnesses, Nell also helmed for extremely long periods in such physically demanding conditions that many men would have struggled to cope. To top this off, she still had time to give me some (possibly fake – I'm unsure) sympathy for every cut, graze and blister I bugged her with. Every person on our watch will be buying Nell a couple of G&T's when we hit Cape Town and they'll never be more deserved.

PS. 'Smiffy' has just read this blog and thinks his would be much funnier!

Sail Hard, Stay Stormy!!!