Race 1 - Day 20
Crew Diary - Race 1, Day 20: Liverpool to Punta del Este
09 September

Catherine Foster
Catherine Foster
Team GREAT Britain
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Bedroom Olympics

So whilst most of you may believe the first two weeks of the race are all about honing our helming, trimming, navigation, and general sailing skills, what it is really about is mastering the art of getting into bed. On the GREAT Britain boat we have created our very own bedroom Olympics.

After a quiet few days in the Doldrums, recovering from the initial qualifiers, things are really hotting up in the competition now we are sailing upwind on a port tack. Taking our inspiration from the high jump arena, some competitors favour the reverse 'Fosbury Flop' technique, whilst I myself am leaning towards the forward straddle style.

Not only is this event a challenge for all, it is also an excellent spectator sport. Even Skipper Andy has got involved today offering a little outside assistance, which coincidentally may lead to Catherine's disqualification. Storming into the lead is Pip o'Sullivan, with an excellently executed style, reminiscent of Spiderman up the engine room door. Antonia Hiesgen is also performing well, putting in consistent performances day in day out, also displaying the 'Fosbury Flop' technique...however she has the benefit of the starboard side therefore really displays no real skill, simply like getting into bed at home! On this note, Krishna Patel also is a null and void competitor due to having the luck of a starboard bottom bunk, she's laughing all the way to Punta.

Other notable techniques include the scissor jump, beautifully demonstrated by Nicola Thurlow. There have also been suggestions of using the boat hook to master a pole vault style entrance. This one is yet to be tried however I believe will be wholly successful – wait for later instalments on this.

Once on top of the mattress, the competition is not over. You still have the delicate task of trouser removal (for maximum comfort), entrance into your sleeping bag liner, gimbaling of the bunk so that you don't fall out but really to ensure your face is touching the ceiling, and lastly, positioning of your fan for maximum airflow and minimum face laceration. Then we have the pièce de résistance...the lee cloth. We have all wondered, with all due respect, how a piece of cloth not really any bigger than our knickers can really save us from plummeting out of the suspended hell hole that we call 'bed'. But that to one side, we have been advised to pull it as tight as possible. This is no easy feat at 30 degrees angle and bouncing seas with your face pressed up against the damp sweaty ceiling...

We thought the stakes the were high in this Leg 1 race, but nothing could prepare us for the athleticism and endurance required for the bedroom Olympics. Keep your eyes peeled for updates.

Love yous all,

Catherine :)