Hello everyone,

Despite the risk of being repetitive, I have to report life since our last blog on board Visit Sanya, China has been much as Mary reported 48 hours ago. A blur of ‘hooning along’, distance records being broken and whoops on the surf from the back of the boat, as yet another of our crew join the ‘20knot club’. I am not sure but is there a tattoo that sailors are required to get when they helm a Clipper 70 past that illustrious speed?

John and Colin added their names to that exclusive roster.

Somewhat frustratingly, despite all this speed, it seems we have still been sliding down the pack, and now find ourselves in seventh place. We clearly misjudged the twists and turns of the Gulf Stream (with its incredibly powerful, helpful current), as it meanders northwards across the Atlantic, turning when it twisted and twisting when it turned. Our highly sophisticated decision making process described in the last blog, of taking a straw poll at the lunchtime meeting, and then trying to avoid colour clashes on the Race Viewer, is not quite working as well as it might.

But all the crew are really up for it. Kite hoists, peels and drops are happening like clockwork, and there are plenty more miles, twists, turns and wind holes where we can catch up. We are still very much within touching distance of the leaders.

And, most importantly, Eve at last saw a dolphin. No longer was she looking the wrong way, although she was helming at the time, so our course might not have been the straightest as a result. This was rather overshadowed by the two Bermudan shearwaters that have been following us all afternoon – haven’t we already left Bermuda? - for attention grabbing star power.

Until next time, Jai Yo Sanya, Mike, Mary and our 20 knot crew