Race 8 Day 5: Leaderboard shake up as fleet battle unsettled conditions

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It’s been all change at the top of the leaderboard in the last 24 hours with frustrating squally conditions hampering the fleets progress, while a tactical ploy by Jamaica Get All Right saw the team storm ahead of Derry~Londonderry~Doire relinquishing its lead for the first time in Race 8.

After a tactical decision to sail as close to the wind as possible in the last 24 hours Jamaica Get All Right made a triumphant sprint into first place. However in the last half an hour the Northern Irish entry Derry~Londonderry~Doire has challenged and regained its lead. As the fleet bunch up GREAT Britain has slid into third place just one mile ahead of the Dutch entry OneDLL, as just 30 miles separate the top eight teams.

Skipper of Jamaica Get All Right Pete Stirling described his tactical decision and impressive new position within the fleet.

“Overnight we deliberately sailed as close to the wind as we possibly could and it paid off as this morning we were the most westerly boat in the fleet, which had the effect of moving us up the leader board in a dramatic fashion. So now we find ourselves in a good position but the really hard part will be defending it as the rest of the fleet will be hot on our heels.”

As the fleet make its way through the Soloman Sea which separates Papa New Guinea and the Soloman Islands, the squally unsettled conditions, ever changing wind direction and endless sail changes continue to blight the fleets progress. However, PSP Logistics have enjoyed the light relief from the hot and humid conditions having experienced ‘our first official shower since Brisbane.’

Skipper of Switzerland, Vicky Ellis sums up the conditions of the last 24 hours:

“Combine the rose dawn with the rising clouds and come the afternoon we have been in squall after squall.  They are now so dense it's just one huge squall according to the radar.

“Stuck under this same cloud are OneDLL and Old Pulteney. Just arrived too on the Automatic Identification System (AIS) is PSP Logistics whose luck seems to have run the same as ours after they had fortunate wind to run them in to the Solomon Seas and have caught up with the pack.” 

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