Day 5 has bought a respite from the gale force winds that lashed the fleet over the previous 36 hours, with winds reducing from the storm high of 90 knots to a far lighter, yet still changeable wind pattern of between 10 and 25 knots, with numerous, active rain squalls.
The fleet has now dipped back into the Southern Ocean and the Roaring Forties for the second time in the Clipper Race, where fresh winds from the Antarctic have caused a noticeable drop in sea temperatures, approximately 20’C, down to 13’C which has required crew to pull out their hats and gloves to keep warm.
After an eventful 48 hours, Derry~Londonderry~Doire has now resumed racing, with skipper Sean McCarter explaining, “We are happy to report that our casualty, round the world crew Michelle Porter, was safely transferred to a Coast Guard Rescue boat at 1950 UTC yesterday evening in Algoa Bay, just off Port Elizabeth. Before leaving, we gave the Coast Guard strict instructions to take care of our birthday girl and Michelle strict instructions to go easy on the doctors at the hospital! We are at least confident that the Coast Guard will comply!”
Race 4 has been officially named as the ‘Kinjarling Cup’, after the name used by the traditional owners for Albany, the race port destination. The translation of Kinjarling in English is "place of rain," used by the local Menang people, part of the Noongar nation of Australia's first people.
It appears that the race has been very aptly named as Qingdao skipper Gareth Glover commented, “After days of waves breaking over Qingdao and rain at times as squalls pass by, all your kit gets wet and most of what you have is wet. As I write this, water is dripping from the winch above my head….If you think sleeping is dry then think again.”
A small, energetic low appears to be developing over the next 24 to 36 hours, with wind gust expected to increase somewhat, though unlikely anywhere near as strong as experienced so far in this race.
All the fleet, barring Team Garmin who started 48 hours behind and Derry~Londonderry~Doire who recently completed their injury diversion, are now within 4000 miles to Albany. At 1100 UTC, the current race standings see no change in the leaderboard. Qingdao continue to lead the fleet (3624.6 miles to finish) with Henri Lloyd in second place (3719.9) and OneDLL (3789.5) still third.
To read the skipper reports, click here.
For the Race 4 Race Viewer, click here.