Hello Team,

How are you doing this ‘70’s Disco Dancing Dolphins’ Tuesday. Hope your week got off to a good start? This end the mood on Seattle is very high, just soaking up the experience of sailing the North Atlantic, and appreciating how lucky and privileged we are to be able to do this. The music on deck has moved a couple of decades with the current most popular playlist being ‘70’s Dance Party Essentials’, so ‘Play that Funky Music White Boy’.

The sailing has just been awesome, the wind holes of Leg 7 a distant memory, which seems hard to recall, and fingers crossed that remains. We achieved the best 6 hour run I have ever hit on a Clipper 70, 83.8nm. At 22:27:28UTC on 3 July, we crossed 54° 56.55’W longitude, meaning CV22 Seattle has completed her circumnavigation of the globe. Crossing it is a bit of an understatement, we tore over it at 24kts. A massive congratulations to Dawn, our amazing Sail Repairer, Marcus, the Chief Engineer, Kiki, Watch Leader and awesome helm and Alec, the Ship’s Doctor and no-job-too-small doer, they have all joined a unique club.

We are currently racing our own race against the wind hole that is due to develop across the race track on Wednesday. It's interesting watching the other boats slightly adjusting course and executing their own tactics to try and get to the ‘safe side’ of the trap. For you watching on the Race Viewer it will be fascinating to see the plans that work, and what positions the fleet end in before starting the middle third of Race 14.

The team have been really pulling the stops out, doing numerous evolutions, head sail changes, switching between the Code 3 to the Yankee 1 and then back again. There was a challenging take down of the Code 3 in the dark, early hours of Monday morning in a Force 7. For Hannah and myself we are so proud to see the communication levels, individual skills and teamwork go through the roof over the last couple of days. When on watch and not doing evolutions, the watches talk through the potential next task and who will do what, so when the time comes, it happens seamlessly.

I mentioned we are enjoying the experience of this crossing and realising how lucky we are to be doing it. Monday afternoon, I was working with ‘Storm Watch’ and while passing 44nm north of the resting place of the Titanic, the sea erupted, with long white lines stretching out each side of the boat. They stretched for what appeared to be a good mile on either side, starting about a quarter of a mile behind us and at first we couldn’t work out what it was. Then we saw that it was wave after wave of dolphins, thousands of them. It was a truly incredible sight, and it must have taken at least 10 minutes before all the waves overtook us. (Now Grannie Lake, I was on the helm and admit, lost a bit of concentration around steering the right course. Don’t tell #1, she will give me a right telling off!)

Now there was a quite serious discussion at Sunday lunchtime, relating to ‘Clean Pants Sunday’. Anyone who has been in a Clipper Race will smile at the routine of changing their under garments once a week, if needed or not. Now you might remember that we left New York on Wednesday, not the normal Sunday departure day. There now is the dilemma, when Sunday arrived, pants had not been worn for 7 days, Wednesday just doesn’t feel right for changing your smalls. Then if one was to wait till the following Sunday, hopefully we shouldn't only be a few days away from Derry~Londonderry, so is it then worth it? Anyway, this clearly had been on a few of our minds, Kiki was the one who brought out the elephant in the room. Kiki, #1 and myself all had a point of view and eventually a consensus was agreed. The outcome, well what happens on the boat stays on the boat, but it was agreed that ‘Clean Undies Wednesday’ just didn’t feel right!

Today is National Bikini Day, personally, you’ll be pleased to know, I won’t be taking part, but I might well see if I can ‘spot’ one.

Standing by this channel,

David & #1