Sir Robin Knox-Johnston chases Rhum class leaders

09 November 2014

Clipper Race chairman and founder Sir Robin Knox-Johnston has made up ground on the Rhum class leaders on day 7 of the Route du Rhum - Destination Guadeloupe. Sir Robin - on his Open 60 Grey Power - in seventh position - is now 292.5 miles behind leading skipper Andrea Mura on Vento di Sardegna, 71 miles closer to him than he was on Saturday evening. And Sir Robin is now just 28 miles behind sixth-placed boat, Cap Au Cap Location, with Jean-Paul Froc's Groupe Berto moving up into fifth place in the Rhum class from sixth yesterday.

Ari Huusela is still in eighth place on Neste Oil.

After beating close-hauled yesterday in uncomfortable conditions, the wind has veered to the north. Sir Robin is to the south west of Madeira and making 12.6 knots.

Clipper Race meteorologist and Sir Robin's router Simon Rowell said: "Sir Robin should get around 15 knots of wind today, gusting 20. Initially the direction should stay as he has now, and veer a couple of points during the afternoon, finishing up at North/North east by midnight."

Here is Sir Robin's update from on board Grey Power on Sunday morning:

It was the auto pilot alarm sounding at 0030 that gave the first indication that we had the long awaited veer in the wind from North West to North.

The pilot was set up for a certain course and the move of the wind altered the balance of the sails and the pilot could not hold. A bit of sheet adjustment and we were off. I sat up for a while in case the balance was not right, but we have sailed quickly throughout the night, just changing to the larger Jib just before 0600 this morning.

Its a Grade A grey day out here at the moment but the sun does appear to be trying to find gaps in the clouds to the South East. A little further round to the East is the island of Madeira. I did pick up its very strong lighthouse during the night but we won't see the land.

There is another yacht about three miles away to starboard, doing almost the same speed and course.The name does not come up on AIS (Automatic Identification System).

So porridge for breakfast.

At some time today we need to find out why skype has suddenly decided it needs a password. It didn't yesterday morning but won't allow me in now. Bad programming - again!

RKJ

You can track Sir Robin and Grey Power here on the official race tracker.

It will update every hour.

The Clipper Race will continue to post his blogs here as well.

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