Saturday, 10 March 2012 | by ADOR
After nearly three weeks of intense racing, we finally came within sight of the ‘land of the long white cloud’ – and guess what – it was covered with a long white cloud. Thanks to more lifted breezes behind, the fleet has closed up considerably and we are now only an hour and a half behind Camper and two hours behind Telefonica. This compares to over 200 miles a couple of days ago. On the flip side Sanya are only two hours behind us now. It will make for a tense finish but we will still need something special to close this down in the last 175 miles to the finish.
We have sailed well the last couple of days with Jules calling some nice shifts to work our way upwind. Maybe the incentive of getting to the finish line is bringing out the best in everyone onboard. The pressure has been on today to get round North Cape before the current turned against us – we managed this by the skin of our teeth. Tactically it looks pretty dull between here and the finish but maybe the wind will die tonight and give us a chance – we must keep believing. Another fifth place would not reflect how well we have sailed in this leg – our main mistake appears to have been doing too well early in the leg and leaving us able to lay to the East of the Solomons which turned into a big loss. I am still smarting from this!
What’s done is done – we will make one last big effort tonight and if nothing else we should have a great daytime arrival in the City of Sails tomorrow. I must say ‘Bravo’ to Franc and his team for a perfectly sailed leg on Groupama. I am sure they had their own challenges but from where I am sat they look to have done the perfect job controlling the leg from start to finish. Seven days to the inport race – joy!
date: Saturday, 10 March 2012 16:06:24 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)
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