Day 8:

To motor, or not to motor. That is the question, and we have chosen to motor. Murphy’s law almost simultaneously took effect because with a flick of my finger on the ignition to kick the donkey into gear, the breeze flickered back to life as well as you’d expect it to. So, our free pass of this leg’s Doldrums Corridor is now in effect and we have the next 36 hours, or 4 degrees of latitude, to motor north to aid in the navigation of this very, very, very fickle winded part of the world.

I’m not usually one to opt to turn the motor on, in the past I have even gone as far as to sail the ol’ boat home straight on to the dock just for the heck of it. However, today even I sighed a little bit of relief with the sound of that gearbox clunking into gear. It’s been over a week now, bouncing from one wind hole to the next and it was starting to weigh on the patience of myself and everyone on board. Now the question comes of “too soon” or “too late” as we compare ourselves to the position reports of the other vessels in relation to the up and coming predicted breeze, which, surprise, surprise is looking less than fruity.

Overall, I think we sit in a good place, passing the entry gate to the doldrums corridor 4th and not too far behind the lead pack. With a looming wind hole waiting at the exit gate, an accordion effect is bound to happen in some fashion or another as we switch our engine off and re-join the early motorists. Who will hopefully be bobbing upon our return.

Cheeky shout out to the friends of Airlie Beach once again, it was a fantastic stopover and was great to be welcomed back to my home away from home like I had never left.

Thanks for reading,

Ryan Barkey

Daily Stats:

Tune of the day: The Eagles, Life in the Fast Lane

Daily Run: 128nm

Max boat speed: 12 knots

Sea life spotted: a couple of seagoing birds, even though they appeared to be sweating

Sailing manoeuvres (sail changes, tacks and gybes): couple gybes, kite drop, iron spinnaker hoist, sun awning rigged

Drinks consumed: pine/orange juice jug consumed in seconds

Meal of the day: cinnamon toast

Crew of the day: Anne for taking her 5th shower of the day

Tip of the day: wind before rain sails remain, rain before wind bring em in.

Clipper Race Fact: roughly 3 tonnes of pasta (1570 different pasta meals) will be consumed by the fleet throughout the duration of the race. Based on monkey on math.