Team Blog – Nick Dana – 29th March 2012

Thursday, 29 March 2012 | by ADOR

41.5 KNOTS. New top speed for Azzam set by Rob Greenhalgh today. Two reefs, the J4 and one huge mother of a wave made up the recipe for our top speed. “It was not really our intention to be hitting speeds like this, we have at least another four days of this weather and we certainly do not want to damage the boat or people right now,” said Rob while eating his lunch.

The conditions that Rob is referring to are similar to what the rest of the fleet has been seeing for almost a week now. “We‘ve been into it for about three days now and it already looks and feels as if it’s been a month,” explains Paul Willcox. “It’s more the ‘down below’ life that gets to you, the sailing is absolutely cracking! Blue sky, big waves and solid breeze from behind. Can’t beat it…The Southern Ocean is truly an awesome place.”

I can personally attest to Paul’s sentiments towards the ‘down below’ life. It’s completely insane…we often just find ourselves laughing out loud. There is no plane, train, automobile or simulator that could possibly emulate the violence ‘down below’. It’s simple, if you are not hanging on as if you are about to ride off a cliff and nosedive into the ground – you’re going to take a spill. I do several times a day, and the only thing I can do is control what I’m going to hit. Yesterday I was thrown from the top of engine box, directly sideways with no forward motion, into the top forward bunk. (A good two metres air born.) My shoulder cracked the frame, and subsequently when Nocka went to tuck into his off watch sleep, the bunk collapsed. I wasn’t laughing then…

date: Thursday, 29 March 2012 13:25:15 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way. Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing / Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority is not responsible for third party comments on the website.