Skipper Blogs 13 March 2022

Rob Graham

Imagine your Korea

Imagine your Korea is heading back home to Subic Bay Yacht Club after a very productive training week. Old and new members of the team are working and living well together, and Imogen (team mascot) has been talking everyone through the different crew roles on board.

Deep cleaning and debriefs today, then some maintenance and preparation for ‘the big one’ next week. We might even find time for a beer whilst we're ashore.

Cheers, Rob

David Hartshorn

Seattle

Morning - standby for the peace and quiet being ruined (ha ha).

Jeronimo Santos Gonzalez

Punta del Este

Hola from Punta!

Training is completed. It was intense but very rewarding.

We are now one step closer to getting ready for an adventure of a lifetime. No other ocean races, cruising routes or even cargo routes go through the North Pacific. For an adventurer and sailor like me, it can not get better than that. I really, really, cannot wait.

Don't get me wrong with all this positive attitude. I will moan later when we’re in the middle of the North Pacific, tired, soaked to the bone and cold. I’ll definitely moan about the cold after living in the Philippines for the last two years looking after the Clipper Race fleet, with year-round temperatures of 25-35°C. It’s going to be cold sailing in single-digit temperatures, because for me now 20°C is already cold. To battle the elements I've got every warm piece of Musto sailing clothes I could get. I even have two ultra warm ocean sleeping bags. I am not taking any chances!

Today, we are going home to Subic Bay. It’s time for a nice deep clean of the boat and organising the final touches for our departure.

Tomorrow will be a welcome day off to recharge batteries and to say goodbye (hasta luego) to my new friends in the Philippines.

Jeronimo

Daily Stats:

Tune of the day: No tunes today, busy training

Daily Run: 43 nm

Max boat speed: 10 kts

Sealife spotted: Lots of flying fish

Sailing manoeuvres (sail changes, tacks and gybes) and Le Mans Start practice

Drinks consumed: Awakup Coffee

Meal of the day: Pasta Bolognese

Crew of the day: Jesus, solid all around, top crew.

Word of the day: Que?

Tip of the day: Easier to anchor during the day

Josh Stickland

Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam

Good Morning!

Today is our first birthday on board: it’s Lizzie Poston’s, so she gets to choose song of the day, which if I may say is a very good choice. She doesn't know it yet but she will get to choose her job on deep clean. I know, we know how to pull out all the stops on Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam.

Right, best get to it, see you all soon!

Cheers,

Josh, Angela and the crew of Ha Long Bay Viet Nam

Song of the day - Sunday Morning - The Velvet Underground

Patrick Van Der Zijden

Zhuhai

Hello again everyone.

This is going to be a short one as I’m about to be late to send this in to the Race Office! It’s been a fantastic day or so, we've been talking about and practising flooding and fire drills, a Le Mans start (brilliant fun but occasionally chaotic) and have just come off the back of a brilliant night sail with the boat averaging 9 knots over a three-hour watch which is practically warp speed for this part of the world. we're all a bit tired after a full week's training but I hope I’m right in thinking that we've all had a cracking week, learned heaps and hopefully built a strong foundation together as a team!

All the best from CV28 and all who sail in her!

Mike Miller

Visit Sanya, China

Fun day yesterday. Everyone is champing at the bit to get on with the deep clean!

Chris Brooks

Qingdao

AQP blog from Bruce:

As the sun rises over the hills in the bay, we prepare for our return to Subic Bay Yacht Club. Saturday started with little wind so we covered the last safety lessons on flares, helicopters and grab bags. The wind picked up in the afternoon helping us with the Le Mans start which went very well, and the crew, primed and ready, shot to position when the starter horn sounded and ground the sails up in record time. Later we teamed up with Visit Sanya, China to finish up our final lessons in the training programme, namely towing and boat transfers. The crew have performed really well and are ready for the race.

Our last night on board was spent at anchor in preparation for returning to the deep clean. We read emails from loved ones and news of what has been going on while we have been away. We all wonder what has happened while we have been on the boat, but then, it was also nice to not know too.

Words from Skipper Chris Brooks:

The Le Mans start yesterday was pretty good and was the first time the yachts have all lined up together in two years. We were relatively pleased with performance and put into practice some of the skills we had been focusing on this week. I made up in my head a race back to the land and starting in last place we set to seeing how our boatspeed was- all went well and no problems. With some great focus from the team, we were able to confirm Qingdao is still sailing reasonably well. With 15 knots upwind it gave us a great afternoon sailing- the best I've had for a long time.

Ian Wiggin

Unicef

Inbound. Deep clean today.

All is well.

Nothing further to report.


Skipper Blogs 12 03 22

Rob Graham

Imagine your Korea

Training continues- we have sailed in watches since Jonny joined us yesterday. Evolutions and teamwork are improving rapidly, and we are finding and fixing all 1001 little problems with the boat that are impossible to know until you start using it. Happy to report we have spent only a little time becalmed in the infamous Luzon windhole- the warm breeze is easy to train in but I keep reminding the Imagine your Korea crew that things will get colder, darker and wetter across the Pacific. Enjoy it while it lasts!

Cheers, Rob

David Immelman

GoToBermuda

Good Morning All,

Good morning from a mildly frustrated crew. We were having a lovely sail only to be left with very little wind, which became a nice drift through the night. Candela's comment was "this is the Subic I remember." Anyway it was an enjoyable drift, and the crew, who are really starting to get into it, were all over light-air trimming.

Yesterday was a different story altogether. We ended up having a little dice with Patrick and his crew on Zhuhai, which was great fun for our guys, as I'm sure it was for them. A little one sided as we were flying a Yankee 1 and they had a Yankee 2 up- sail plan matters. We turned around and both hoisted a kite each and gybed our way back from where we came. Great training for both boats.

Looking forward to seeing all the other boats this afternoon for our Le Mans practice start.

Cheers

CV21 and Wavy

David Hartshorn

Seattle

Hello Team,

How are we this morning, what are your plans for the weekend? Maybe catching up with the Six Nations?

This end, we have been continuing with our preparation for the Mighty Pacific. After touching base with the Race Office, we covered heavy weather sailing. Setting our Storm Jib and Tri Sail we had to use our imagination to visualize the sea state and temperatures we might encounter. Here the wind dropped off, the sea flattened and the temperature rose. I think last night was the hottest it's been since I arrived in the Philippines.

After dealing with heavy weather tactics and with the temperature continuing to increase, what better opportunity to test the crew with a fire onboard drill, I thought. So shortly after lunch, “Number 1” came up the companionway shouting “fire. Fire in the accommodation area, Fire, Fire.'' Looking distressed and carrying a fire extinguisher, Hannah was quickly asked some questions by “starboard watch.” Using some new skills from an earlier talk on fire fighting and what equipment we have on board, the crew then deployed to fight the fire. A number of other incidents were dealt with by crew, while Hannah continued being in role. Although I was somewhat disappointed that she never appeared with smoking hair at any point!

Today we awoke on anchor, in a beautiful bay called Port Silanguin, and the sea state is like glass. It's going to be hot today and still, which will make our abandonment exercise feel a little strange. It will however give us the opportunity to see if our fire hose has a good range when we do our boat to boat transfers with “Dare to Lead'' later. We wouldn’t? Would we…

Standing by this channel,

David

Dan Jones

WTC Logistics

Good morning, so WTC Logistics has been in a watch system for two days now and the normal rhythm of a Clipper Race boat is in full swing. Night watches have been everyone's favourite so far for the cool breeze and lack of sun, as well as the beautiful star-lit nights and the questionable night watch conversations! Kites have been flown, and headsails repeatedly changed. It's really amazing how far our crew have come in just a few days, it really is just a refresher!

It's now Saturday and today's fun activity is the Le Mans practice race start, where we get to go head to head in close proximity to all the other yachts to battle for the chance to sneak ahead early.

Such fun!

Dan, Ineke and the crew of WTC Logistics 'OUT'

Jermonimo Santos Gonzalez

Punta del Este

Day 4:

Hola from Punta! Another day of training at night, another milestone achieved. It takes a while to get into the rhythm of sailing a Clipper 70 but after four days of training things are starting to fall into place. For some of the crew it has been two years with very little or no sailing at all, so it’s great to see that our previous training and sailing halfway across the world was quickly coming back.

Last night we focused on trimming the sails and helming in the dark: it’s like trying to drive a car at night and turn the lights off. Please don't try it but you get my point, it's not easy.

After lunch we'll do our first Le Mans start with the other boats at the entrance of Subic Bay. This will be a great occasion to compete with the whole fleet even if it is during practice! Race start is around the corner, I cannot wait.

Daily Stats:

Tune of the day: Head over heels, The Go-go's

Daily Run: 80nm

Max boat speed: 10knots

Sea life spotted: Dolphins, flying fish, a cormorant

Sailing maneuvers (sail changes, tacks and gybes) and mainly tacking and race sail change

Drinks consumed: Drinking chocolate has been very popular, we have run out of it

Meal of the day: Hong Kong noodles

Crew of the day: Dorthe, she is very calm

Tip of the day: don't put salt in your coffee (Thank you G****e for the electrolytes)

Jeronimo (Sombreros Jose!)

Angela Brandsma, AQP

Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam

After a busy day yesterday we went on anchor in Nazasa Bay around 0900 UTC and everybody had a nice refreshing swim! In the evening we did some knots and other parts of the crew assessment. Right now the Skipper is doing the flood, fire, gas instruction followed by using the tri-sail and stormboards. After that it is crew assessment time!

Cheers,

Angela, Josh and the crew of Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam

Song of the day- It's a new day

Nigel Parry

Dare To Lead

A moonlit night at sea, but dodging hundreds of fishing boats in calm conditions presents its own challenges for the Dare to Lead crew. Reefing practice and steering both compass courses and wind angles, interspersed with the usual safety checks, bilge checks, battery, water and fuel levels... There is always something to do on a Clipper Race yacht. and boredom is most certainly not an issue. Heading into our old anchorage to meet up with CV22 for today's boat-to-boat drills. Now, breakfast...

Patrick Van Der Zijden

Zhuhai

It has been another fantastic day of training, with the crew coming into team shape like never before. Hard work is done during the hot daily hours, but smiles remain on faces.

After bobbing and finally sailing through the night yesterday, we found ourselves in a light wind patch in the morning, which gave room for our first crew mast ascent. Inigo volunteered and was sent aloft with a can of PTFE lubricant spray to grease up our mast track. After the high altitude photo shoot session and maintenance of the track we brought him safely down. Of course we needed to test the track, so we followed up with more reefing exercises to test the result of the lubrication job.

Next was a spinnaker set-up tutorial whilst sailing upwind. Later just after lunch we spotted another Clipper Race vessel on the horizon and it was game on for a chase and race. After two hours of a tacking duel, (with fake tacks incluided) we were positioned upwind enough to set our spinnaker. The hoist went smoothly and our first spinnaker run was a fact. The crew did a great job with trimming and gybing the spinnaker.

We ended our day with a MOB under kite and our first drop, which went pretty well, with some points to enforce. The pick up of the man overboard was done by our swimmer Chris and soon the recovery was complete.

We arrived a little late to our anchor spot we left after day one in one of the northerly bays and enjoyed a peaceful night under a starry sky.

Today's agenda is checks and muster drills before we gather outside Subic Bay for our Le Mans start practice with the other boats.

Tot Morgen, Patrick

Mike Miller

Visit Sanya, China

Yesterday was all about gybing. Lots of 3-man gybing contests, to hone skills and understanding, and also a nice way to get our breath back after a night sail featuring many sail changes. A still night at anchor followed (with a magical evening swim in the middle!)

Apologies for the delay - knot tying rather overran. See you at 1500.

Chris Brooks

Qingdao

Good morning everyone. Today we practice our Le Mans start with the ten other yachts in the fleet. We'll be carrying out this type of start on the 24 March en route to Seattle: all of the yachts line up in a row and sail on the same course, and after ten minutes of motoring we are allowed to hoist our sails and start sailing as fast as we can. However it's still not as clear cut as that because then we must keep sailing in the same direction for a further ten minutes until we can break formation and sail in our preferred direction. Crew run to get the sails up as fast as possible but actually in some cases it can be beneficial to sail slower when a tack would be advantageous… It will be great to get out with the others and compare speeds next to them ahead of the race.

Following this, we are going to do all of our two-boat training work. Have a good day everyone!

Kind regards, Chris



Ian Wiggin

Unicef

Today is a weird day.

We have finished our training syllabus and have handed Unicef over to the crew for 24hrs in the two new watch teams. I do not know what to do with myself. So far today I have coloured in the CCZ with 3 permanent markers as it was hard to enforce a theoretical area. Our new two-page jobs list should keep Dan and I busy for the rest of the day before the practice Le Mans start. I do feel a bit redundant, but at the same time this is great training and development for the watch teams and newly appointed leaders. Plus it gives Dan and I the confidence we will need to leave the deck in good hands whilst we write award-winning, witty, Karla (Comms Team)-pleasing blogs.

We are planning to continue watches overnight to develop helming and to increase speed and accuracy on head sail changes, reefing, tacking and gybing and general boat duties. You will be pleased to know that the sleeping practice is going well... apart from for the Canadian on board who is used to minus 20/30c temperatures.

All is well. Nothing further to report.



Skipper Blogs, 11 March 2022

Rob Graham

Imagine your Korea

Imagine your Korea Leg 6 crew is now complete- yesterday a final member of the team re-joined us after quarantine. It's good to have our team reunited- Imogen was particularly pleased to see a fellow Round-the-Worlder on board again. Having escaped from Subic, we headed offshore… straight into a windhole. This is the weather we remember from 2 years ago. So a gentle night at sea in watches, trying to keep moving through the lulls and enjoying the occasional windy periods.

Cheers, Rob

David Immelman

GoToBermuda

Good Morning All,

Had a great day yesterday with up to 37 knots of wind and great sailing/training in the bay, working on reefing and shaking a reef- very good practice doing all of this while working on tethers. We then hoisted a kite and headed west for a kite run for lunch. Some MOBs to finish the day off and back to our anchorage for an early dinner.

As is our want, we start at 0530 with anchor up and out before daybreak, to do as much training as possible before the heat of the day. And it's working, the crew are shaking out all the cobwebs and things are going well.

On a quick training note we did our fire drill at the hottest point of the day and the fire hose probably put more of the crew out, rather than our fake fire, in a vague attempt to cool off :)

Anyway, chat tomorrow!

Cheers, Wavy

David Hartshorn

Seattle

Hi Team,

How are you all this Friday morning? This end, the crew are buzzing. There is a great atmosphere on board and much laughter, which is fantastic.

The last 24 hours have been full on. We have been doing some inter-watch relay races around the boat while at sea. Which might sound odd, but is a really good way to reinforce the correct use of safety tethers. Also, it allows me to get an insight into the personality of different crew members, which will help Hannah and I put the watches together, with hopefully the right balance on each when we cross the Mighty Pacific.

We have been perfecting our gybing procedures so they are really systemic and smooth. This led nicely into a great kite run, with both Maria and Ike helming some great gybes, neither of whom had helmed under kite before, so great stuff. We did 2 MOB drills, one unexpected, taking the crew by surprise. They rose to the challenge brilliantly, requiring very little direction from "Number 1" or myself. The second was in the dark, bringing a new but essential element to this week, as 50% of our race will be in the dark.

We have sailed through the night and the crew are rightly pleased with themselves. The wind has been quite fickle at times, but they have kept the boat moving, as well as honing their evolution skills in the dark. The crew are most definitely coming together as a cohesive unit, which is very exciting. This morning there is much talk over the names of the watches as we go forward, as a reinvented "Seattle."

So while I wish you a happy "Fizz Friday," I am off to join the crew for a pancake breakfast.

Standing by this channel,

David

Dan Jones

WTC Logistics

Good Morning. So, our day started off with a very gusty breakfast at anchor. As the sun rose, the wind in our beautiful bay also decided to wake up, and our anchor started to drag but it was taking us into deeper water. We slowly overtook Zhuhai in the anchor watch race and then started the engine and pulled the hook up. As our morning of sailing started a little earlier than planned we decided to rig and hoist our storm sails, lashing the boom down to the traveller- good training for what the North Pacific might throw at us. This gave enough time for Zhuhai to finish their leisurely breakfast and come and join us for some boat-to-boat exercises.

Greeted by the happy smiling faces of Patrick and James, we embraced beams and did a somewhat majestic dance around the bay, we transferred Bob and some witty gifts from boat to boat, and then headed on separate paths.

After a full day of sail training we flew our first kite of the Refresher Week, smoothly hoisted and gracefully dropped.WTC Logistics is looking good!

Now sitting on night watch writing this blog, I'm having serious deja vu of our last visit to Subic Bay, as we flap around in a windhole for the night. Also for your information we have a zoologist on board and she has informed me that we saw some pan-tropical spotted dolphins!

Dan, Ineke and the crew of WTC Logistics 'OUT.’

Jeronimo Santos Gonzales

Punta del Este

Good morning! After four days of training, Punta is getting stronger and stronger everyday.

Today we'll complete fire, MOB and abandon ship drills.

Tomorrow more!

Jeronimo

Angela Brandsma, AQP

Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam

We had a calm night during which we made so many turns to follow the wind that we did 0nm on the Odometer. Nevertheless, the crew enjoyed being in the watch system and keeping an eye out for fishing boats and tankers. Today we will get the kite up again and are planning to do safety briefs about flooding, fire and handling the emergency boards (hatches).

First blog from Angela :-)

Nigel Parry

Dare To Lead

Crew skills were well and truly refreshed yesterday, with more sailing drills and a couple of successful MOB drills. No need for the immersion suit in these conditions, so there were plenty of volunteers for a cooling dip into the water as a rescue swimmer! Dare To Lead remains determined and positive…

Patrick Van Der Zijden

Zhuhai

Hello from the Philippines everybody!

It's been another beautiful busy day or so sailing out here. Following a gusty anchor watch in a bay we named 'Turner Bay,' after one of the crew kicked off our day with some very successful towing and transfer drills with our good friends on board WTC Logistics. After going our separate ways we cracked on with getting our storm jib and tri-sail out just as the wind completely died off. Any watching sailor would have wondered if we knew something they didn't. Luckily the wind filled in again and we spent the rest of the day practising reefing and general sailing skills before settling into our night watches. This was followed by an excellent night time MOB drill at around 0100 and we then proceeded to sail until around about 0500 when, in classic Philippines style, we came to a large windhole just off of Subic and have spent the last few hours bobbing. Luckily the wind has at this very moment started to pick up so it's on with the show!

From CV28 and all who sail on her, have a great day!

Mike Miller

Visit Sanya, China

A bit more yachting was completed on CV29 yesterday, with spinnakers featuring prominently. The spirit of the crew, and their keenness to learn is fantastic. Very flukey wind overnight, which was enjoyed in close company of the good ships CV20 and CV21.

Chris Brooks

Qingdao

Hi guys, welcome to another great day on board Qingdao. Last night we did some good race practice by sailing through the night. There were some nice winds and everyone enjoyed it. At watch change I surprised the team with an MOB drill. It was great to see everyone spring into action. The method is becoming a reflex, and although one watch had only just woken up the team as a whole worked so well to collect our life-size dummy from the water in 6-7 minutes.

Today I look forward to finishing some of our remaining drills before a rig climb to carry out a few adjustments and repairs. Have a great day everyone :)

Kind regards, Chris

Ian Wiggin

Unicef

Departure for Leg 6 "THE BIG'N" is now T minus 10 days!!

Yesterday was another thorough and relentless re-education in all things Clipper 70. I am hugely impressed by what we have achieved in only 3 days sailing together on Unicef.

We completed the knot tying section of the crew assessment yesterday. Sir Robin, we welcome your dockside inspections of our crew- prepare to be impressed.

Dan Bodey is a super star, I have been super impressed with him. Who knew someone could teach "the correct use of a sail tie" for 20 minutes... I think I may have taken him for granted as Race Crew.

All is well.

Nothing further to report.

Ian and Dan


Skipper Blogs 10 03 2022


Rob Graham

Imagine your Korea

We had a good day's training yesterday, with crew assessments and general maintenance whilst anchored in the morning, then Imagine your Korea headed out for some sailing.

As soon as we had full sail up, the wind died - a painful reminder of the time we spent drifting through this area two years ago! Having found a way through the windhole we got some good tacking and gybing in, before BOB fell overboard - again! Safely recovered, we anchored for the night. Then got the anchor up and reset after the wind shifted.

Team building is going well - we all agree that we don't like anchoring!

Cheers, Rob

David Immelman

GoToBermuda

Good Morning All,

Well, we had a mixed day yesterday. We went around to pick up our last crew from Subic Bay, Whilst we were waiting we did our fire, flooding drills on board.

Eventually Wotjek was allowed to board and we headed off for a sail. We started with gibing the main then some beating, improving as we went. All good. This morning, we were up early and back out at it.

However, we had a short break for Paul's Birthday. Happy Birthday :). Heather baked him a cake last night so we all had chocolate cake for breakfast.

Good start to the day.

Cheers chat tomorrow.

Wavy

David Hartshorn

Seattle

Hello Team,

How are we today? Are we looking forward to another day of development and learning? We are at this end, after a fantastic day yesterday. We had a slightly challenging start lifting our anchor, but that was resolved, with some application of grey matter and some physical effort.

Our day on the water was very much focused of developing our skills as a team in conducting evolutions, reef in - reef out. Looking at getting each crew member to identify where the baton changes come, so they know what their role is at any given point, also importantly why that was the case. The other big effort was ensuring the right jammers are out at the right time, not just thinking they are. To address this we spent time embedding "PETT" into our approach to conduct evolutions - P- Preparation, right lines, right winches etc. E - Execution, actually conducting the evolution. T- trim the sails accordingly and then finally the Welsh phase T- Tidy the lines etc at the end.

Hannah and I were delighted by the process and the way the team is coming together - awesome. The day was rounded off with a swim while at anchor and bangers and mash with onion gravy - what a top day!

Bye for now

David

Dan Jones

WTC Logistics

Morning! Good day of sailing yesterday. We remembered how upwind sailing feels. We spent the whole morning beating upwind into 20kts with the boat back to a 40 degrees heel angle. People are starting to remember what this sailing business is about!

At anchor in a lovely bay north of Subic Bay with our friendly neighbours Zhuhai! Today, we will commence our boat to boat drills with them and complete a large part of the Level 4 syllabus. Following this we go into watch systems for the remainder of the week!

Dan, Ineke and the crew of WTC Logistics 'OUT'

Jeronimo Santos Gonzalez

Punta del Este

Hola from the yellow boat!

We have started with the watch system where we divided the crew into two groups (watches) to sail 24/7, allowing us to work and rest. For me and the crew, adapting to this new sailing and sleeping pattern is tiring so I'll save my energy and talk to you tomorrow if you don't mind.

Good night

Jeronimo (El Patron)

Daily Stats:

Tune of the day: The sound of winches and sails being trimmed

Daily Run: 100 nm

Max boat speed: 12 knts

Sealife spotted: 7-10 dolphins at night. The third time I spotted dolphins in the Philippines in the last two years and I have sailed a lot.

Sailing manoeuvres (sail changes, tacks and gibes): Lots

Drinks consumed: 15 coffees, 6 teas, 3 chocolates and 2 milos

Meal of the day: Sausages and mash

Crew of the day: Difficult to pick, they are all working so hard!

Tip of the day: Drink water with electrolytes in really hot weather to keep the body functioning well.

Jeronimo

Josh Stickland

Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam


‘ello folks,

Today we are getting the kite up!! Wish us luck. We are going to need it!!

We had a windy old night on anchor but the kedge held well in the 20 knots!

Got to anchor last night at about 1700 so we used the last hour of light to do a load of little jobs ranging from Sika and taping split pins to making sail ties to putting Vaseline on the pump shaft to stop it squeaking so loudly (it was disturbing people's sleep with 40 squeaks x 6 in the middle of the night).

Josh, Angela and the crew of Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam

Song of the day - the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles theme tune!



Nigel Parry

Dare To Lead

A breezy start to the day yesterday, caused by the Katabatic winds racing down the hills by the anchorage, followed by a full day of sailing refresher exercises. Hoisting, reefing, tacking, gybing; all thoroughly refreshed!

All seem to have gained their sea legs again. All topped off with a satisfying supper in our, now fairly familiar, bay.

Cheers!

Nigel

Patrick Van Der Zijden

Zhuhai

Hello world,

Another great day in the Philippines on our Level 4 training week,

The team is in good spirits.

After our long day yesterday, we decided to go back on anchor for a night in one of the northern bays, before resuming training.

On our way to the anchorage we did a run with the emergency steering and after arriving we conducted a fire drill, with a fire pump and fire hose.

The night was interesting, while we circled around on our anchor in the vicinity of other moored Clipper Race yachts. Our anchor watch system worked well.

Today will be filled with transfers and towing followed by more blue water sail training and MOB drills.

Tot Morgen, Patrick

Mike Miller

Visit Sanya, China

Skipper blog :- After picking up Cameron, we had a productive afternoon gybing the Code 3.

We arrived at anchor at 2000 - a good test of mainsail flaking in the dark.

The coffee is excellent, but my usual peanut butter and marmite sandwich for breakfast tastes odd with vegemite. Today promises some good wind, so lots more sailing in the forecast.

Chris Brooks

Qingdao

Good morning to all our followers. We are currently setting up for some sailing as for at least a few hours we will have a good 18-22 knots from the east. The crew are all well after giving them lots of sleep the last couple of nights. Acclimatising to a life on board can be mentally and physically draining and often people are unwell for the first couple of days. I however believe much of this is getting used to the heat and people individually learning to hydrate themselves appropriately.

It's good to have all hands raring to go and today should be very positive with lots of sailing skills and drills. The forecast suggests, as the wind eases and backs (comes from a more anticlockwise position), we may have our first downwind sailing session with spinnakers.

Got to get started now

Speak soon,

Kind regards, Chris

Ian Wiggin

Unicef

Yesterday was our second day sailing, training and living together. The social experiment is going smoothly. We are trying very hard to be conscious in starting the boat standards and atmosphere off in a good way and setting high standards.

This deliberate investment will come into its own once we are being tested in the North Pacific. Speaking of the North Pacific, by my count, we are off in just 11 day!! The rollercoaster car keeps climbing ever closer to the top.....click......click......click. "OOH isn't the view lovely from up here" "Oooh look down there, I can see Justin waving"

We anchored overnight to rest the crew for training today.

Nothing further to report.

Ian and Dan



Skipper Blogs, 9 March 2022

Rob Graham

Imagine your Korea

Imagine your Korea spent yesterday running through some multi-boat procedures with GoToBermuda and Unicef - practice of towing each other and transferring stores and/or people between boats. Seattle then gave us a chance to do a transfer for real when they gave us On Board Reporter Dani's camera cards ... and some biscuits! (Thanks Seattle)

We are a mixture of returning crew members and new joiners - this gives a combination of familiarity and fresh experience, and lots of questions along the lines of "where do we store the peanut butter?" or "did the tack line always run down that side of the boat?" The process of settling in and getting to know the boat and each other is well underway - we have been starting steadily, and will build up gradually through this training week.

Cheers, Rob

David Immelman

GoToBermuda

Good Morning All,

Hello again from GoToBermuda, We are currently motoring back to Subic Bay to collect our last crew mate who has been released from quarantine. It’s fantastic we will have the whole team together.

Yesterday was a very successful day. We met up with Imagine your Korea and Unicef and did our boat to boat drills, which all went very well and the crew really enjoyed it. Then up and proper sailing for the first time. The conditions were ideal and we did a nice beat out of the bay just working on the basics. Then it was back to our anchorage for the night, with a very tired crew. A quick swim and start on the below water line cleaning. After dinner there was a post dinner lecture about boat ethics and daily chores, which Candela and myself presented.

So until tomorrow

Cheers

Wavy

David Hartshorn

Seattle

Hello Team

Long time no speak. How fantastic to see you again. Hope you are keeping well and you have been keeping your knot skills up, with regular practice. Apologies for not touching base yesterday, slight teething issue with some IT bits, which is why we do the training courses in the first place. All sorted and here we are, back!

Great day on the water yesterday. There was a real buzz around the boat, as we worked on the water as a new team for the very first time. A combination of four returning RTWers and nine crew who have joined this edition of the race in the last 12 months. I am not sure who was the most excited to be getting on the water, the returner, the new crew, Hannah or myself, but I think possibly our trusted steed Seattle, “Telcee”. After nearly two years to the day that she had sails flown, she rose to the occasion, with head sails set and the full main, she heeled over and sprang back to life. With us all enjoying the moment, doing what everyone had worked so hard to achieve, getting the fleet sailing again. Magic.

After a hard day on the water, practicing, reefing, head sail, hoists and strikes, tacking we executed a boat to boat transfer with Imagine your Korea to get media footage back to shore. We dropped anchor, many of the crew had an end of day swim, before a bit of splicing instruction followed by a Thai chicken curry. Awesome. Life doesn’t get better than that. It's great to be back.

David

Dan Jones

WTC Logistics

First night sail for the crew, which was tiring. We went hove to for most of the night but had to start the engine numerous times due to small fishing boats which decided to motor right into our path. Myself and Ineke lost a lot of precious sleep time!

Dan, Ineke and the crew of WTC Logistics 'OUT'

Jermonimo Santos Gonzalez

Punta del Este

Magandang umaga (good morning). After an intense full day of training and safety drills we anchored at Silanguin Bay. I have come here lots of times with friends, overlooking white sandy beaches and crystal waters. From the shore one can buy freshly caught fish and cook it in the BBQ, then spend the day snorkelling or on the paddle board. Silanguin is a place that holds a lot of good memories for me.

Today, we have a full training schedule and we are starting the watch system through the day and night. It is a good test for the crew to get into the routine of waking up in the middle of the night to continue sailing. I can’t wait!!

Hasta manana! (Until tomorrow!)

Jeronimo (El Patron)

Daily Stats

Tune of the day: Tengo un trato, Mala Rodriguez

Daily Run: 42 nm

Max boat speed: Sailing at 11.5knts

Sea life spotted: The Philippines doesn't have many sea birds but plenty of underwater sea life. Still they were all sleeping I think because we didn't see any.

Sailing maneuvers: We did towing exercises with Ha Long Bay, Vietnam and hoist manoeuvres on our own, then we went for a sail full throttle to test the equipment and sails.

Drinks consumed: Coffee and more coffee, Punta has an unlimited supply of the best coffee in the Philippines (AWAKUP COFFEE)

Meal of the day: Jesus and Chip cooked a great rice and pulses dish and a blueberry cake.

Crew of the day: David Watkins, reminding me of some very important points

Tip of the day: Clip on the inside when we are about to tack, otherwise you'll end in a very uncomfortable position


Nigel Parry

Dare To Lead

The first real full day at sea yesterday, with a bit of swell running, was a reminder to us all that it takes a while to get our sea legs! Smiles all round, though, despite a couple of green faces, as we hoisted sails for the first time and Dare To Lead leaned gracefully into the elements she was designed for. Training included a successful test of AIS transmitters and a good refresher course from Al Jay about the safe use of winches. The day was topped off with a refreshing swim at anchor. Happy boat, happy crew, happy skipper.

Nigel

Patrick Van Der Zijden

Zhuhai

Hello world,

What an interesting last 24 hours we have had.

After departing our anchorage yesterday morning, we left for the open sea and started our sail training. The morning was filled with tacking, gybing and trimming.

The weather was hot as usual and some crew had to pause from too much sun.

The daytime was completed by our live AIS man overboard exercise, before we got ourselves into night mode. The idea was to hove-to, but as the conditions were fantastic we sailed through the night.

The crew is in good spirits while we are sailing into the new day for another glorious day in the Philippines.

Keep you posted and Tot Morgen, Patrick

Mike Miller

Visit Sanya, China

A beautiful evening in a delightful tropical bay. The only thing missing were the piña coladas. A great chance for everyone to rest and catch breath after our first 30 hours at sea amongst the fishermen.

Yesterday was a great reminder of all the long forgotten evolutions, which were coming back quickly by the end of the day. A tight riding turn on the staysail halyard, which required Mary to head up the mast to change the halyard, gave us a chance to work as a team and think on our feet just before we came in. It was also great practice for the challenges ahead.

Chris Brooks

Qingdao

Good morning all,

The first two days have been great as we got out to sea. We had the best first 24hrs but then the last 24 have seen a few people not feeling so well overnight as they acclimatise to boat life. The heat here is quite severe and it's clear we must encourage each other to drink more. In the heat you can drink litres and notice that you hardly ever need to go to the toilet so we are obviously losing a lot of water in a day.

Sailing yesterday was good. The crew started to come together and sail handling improved as we witnessed the forming of a team, and practised our man overboard drills

Kind regards, Chris

Ian Wiggin

Unicef

Just a short one. Getting back into the swing of things and timings here. Yesterday was a busy training day. Day one of sailing together. We are now 12 days away from our departure for the North Pacific and are aware that we have a lot of work to do. But first impressions are encouraging. This is definitely a refresher. The crew are doing well and have arrived with good knowledge.

Last night the wind was all over the place. We picked up anchor around midnight and drifted until the morning. Today, we are planning two sessions to avoid the heat of midday.

Nothing further to report.

Ian and Dan


Skipper’s Blogs, 8 March 2022

After a month of yacht maintenance and hard work, the Clipper Race fleet left Subic Bay to commence a week of training with new and returning Race Crew.

Skipper’s wouldn’t usually blog on a training week, however, given the excitement of getting the yachts out to sea, we wanted to hear how things were going on board.

Read on to hear a selection of Skipper Blogs from Day 1 of training in the Philippines’ tropical waters.

David Immelman

GoToBermuda

Good Morning All,

My first blog for the restart, albeit for our training.

Following the excitement of all meeting together on board for the first time, then slipping the dock, the Race Crew have been non-stop enjoying being on board. The views of the coast were stunning last night, not to mention the sunset. Our first dinner was great thanks to Maddie and Mike. During our dessert, we carried on with some more admin type training, going through some standing orders. Then off to bed with an anchor watch organised, just making sure everyone got a chance to see the beautiful curtain of stars. This morning a good early 0530 start and we are on our way to meet CV31 and CV20 to do our towing and transfer drills. We are looking forward to a great day.

Cheers Wavy

Dan Jones

WTC Logistics

Well, what can I write in my first Skipper’s blog? What a fantastic first day seeing the marina full of familiar faces, all eager to get on board their yachts! All of them are keener than ever to start sailing with their teams again.

Battle flags flying, Parade of Sail… you would be confused that it wasn't a real Race Start.

WTC Logistics feels alive again. We motored to Nazasa Bay, around 15nm to the north of Subic Bay and set our anchor in what is one of the most beautiful bays I’ve ever seen! Towering mountains either side, crystal clear waters and a small fire on the beach with locals playing music.

Epic first day and more to come!

Dan, Ineke and the crew of WTC Logistics 'OUT.'

Jeronimo Santos Gonzalez

Punta del Este

Day 1:

Hola from the yellow boat! Wow, how to start a new Skipper blog after this long absence? What a ride it has been! For me, I’ve been here in the Philippines for the last two years, looking after the Clipper Race fleet. It's been like for most people, a rollercoaster of good and bad times: strict lockdowns, people getting ill, but also, sailing, appreciating freedom, and the feeling that we should make the most of our lives.

I love the Philippines- the country and its people have been very good to me during the last two years. Even though I was here on my own, very quickly they made me feel welcome in the local community.

Here we are almost on the other side, stronger, wiser and back into adventure mode, about to cross the mighty North Pacific Ocean. The Punta del Este crew has travelled the globe with all the challenges that travelling carries during COVID times. They are here about to start one the most exciting adventures of their lives because they really want to do this. Before we start sailing and training I already know that my crew is strong. I know they'll race hard across the North Pacific and like me they'll never give up, they'll never surrender.

We are at anchor at one of the most beautiful bays in the north of the Philippines, taking a breath, having a moment, reflecting on what we've been through and the challenges that lie ahead. Soon we'll start training hard, and we'll prepare to sail safer and faster than ever before.

Daily Stats:

Tune of the day: the sound of a dog barking from the shore! No music played so far- just happy being on the water.

Daily run: 12 nm

Max. boat speed: motoring at 10.5 kts.

Sea life spotted: a Spanish mackerel and a tuna but only from a fisherman trying to sell them to us.

Sailing manoeuvres (sail changes, tacks and gybes) We hoisted the Staysail (smallest front one) only. We took it easy!

Drinks consumed: We have on board Punta del Este the best of Filipino coffee and the best maté of Punta del Este, Uruguay. It's all about quality not quantity. (Maté is a traditional and natural South American caffeine-rich infused drink.)

Meal of the day: We had pasta bolognese, the best meal we've ever had. Also the first!

Crew of the day: All of them for not giving up on Punta del Este and coming back to continue the race despite all difficulties.

Tip of the day: A water-drenched towel in the freezer is perfect for when you wake up hot and sweaty.

Until tomorrow!

Jeronimo (El Patron)

Josh Stickland

Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam

‘Ello folks,

Jacqueline is horrified by my spelling and grammar- I think I've given her PTSD. Apart from that, all good and excited to get going! Don’t worry when the race starts I’ll ask her to sub me writing.

Josh, Angela and the crew of Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam

Song of the day - Humpty Dumpty

Nigel Parry

Dare To Lead

Entering an unfamiliar bay in an unfamiliar land at night is not without it's anxious moments. The following morning, however, as we gaze out on a beautiful sunrise slowly lighting up our surroundings, it is quite spectacular and the rewards are great. This is not the reason we are here, of course, and so as we eat breakfast, invigorated by the scene but chomping at the bit to go out and continue our Refresher/Level 4 training, we’re making sure we are ready to face the challenges ahead. All is well on Dare To Lead.

Patrick Van Der Zijden

Zhuhai

Hello world,

Well, here we are, writing a Skipper’s blog on a Clipper Race yacht.

The last time I wrote a blog like this was July 2014.

Yesterday was a great start for our Level 4 training week, with crew buzzing around on the boats to get them ready for our race-style departure. Gathering around outside the marina waiting for our Parade of Sail to start, and then in convoy leaving Subic Bay, was a pretty sight.

Yesterday afternoon we made our way to Nazasa Bay, north of Subic Bay, for overnight anchorage, to get the crew in boat-mode.

It was a hot night, but luckily the crew had two hours out, while conducting the anchor watch.

This morning, after a good breakfast with real Philippines coffee, we are ready to get the boat in sailing mode and start our sail training properly.

The crew is ready and eager and I foresee a great training week as preparation for the big crossing.

Tot Morgen, Patrick

Mike Miller

Visit Sanya, China

As it was dark when we finally exited Subic Bay, I felt it would be easier to cruise under reefed Main and a Staysail, rather than approaching an unknown anchorage. The crew performed admirably- great chicken curry and tacking in the dark became second nature. The quaint authentic charm of local fishing boats has already turned to mild irritation- they are literally everywhere and prevent any loss of concentration on the helm! But hey, we’re sailing!!!

Chris Brooks

Qingdao

Beginning the Level 4 Training was a breath of fresh air- getting all the boats on the water and beginning our journey. We anchored up last night in a lovely bay near a reef. This morning, after a night of light sleep in the heat of down below deck, we started with a swim to freshen up and to rid ourselves of any growth. This was a great job executed by the crew but also served to allow people to freshen themselves up after a hard day. We are just about to continue our sail training.

Kind regards, Chris

Ian Wiggin

Unicef

Yesterday was a busy day but it was not stressful and happened very naturally. We invested a large portion of our time into getting to know each other better. We have seven days not only to get up to speed on the sailing front, but also to build a team. During our hotel quarantine I asked the crew to watch the 2009-10 Against the Tide Clipper Race documentary. This film highlighted many useful lessons specific to our upcoming Leg 6. Although it is beautiful, calm, and sunny here in the Philippines, we are going to maximise every hour of this week so that we can feel confident in ourselves, in each other, and in Unicef.

This morning we are linking up with CV21 GoToBermuda for towing and transfer exercises, followed by sail training to try and gauge what level the crew are at.

Ian

Join The Race
Until Race Start : The Atlantic Homecoming Leg