Team Blog – Ian Walker – 31st March 2012

Saturday, 31 March 2012 | by ADOR


It’s not every day you tip your boat over on its side 1,700 miles from land then drill 32 holes in the bottom to bolt the hull skin back together but this is what we have successfully done. We trusted the experts, followed their advice and thanks to a great team effort we are now far more confident of our situation and of getting Azzam safe. Since the repair we have managed to sail 300 miles east-north east and into more favourable weather.

We are not fully out of the woods yet and must remember that the outer carbon skin of Azzam is only 1.5mm thick and is now totally unsupported by the inner core. It is reliant on the bolts we have put through to hold it all together and if it started to peel, the whole area could disintegrate pretty quickly. This would be a big problem.

Most of the last day I have spent evaluating our options moving forward. Could we still carry on and sail to Itajai and complete the leg as we are? If not where do we head to? Could we make repairs and then still carry on to Itajai and make the start of the next leg? If not how do we get to Itajai in time for the start of leg 6?

These are the questions we have been bouncing back and forth all day with our shore team and logistics guys working overtime at home. We have several major problems. The first is the lack of safe ports of call and facilities on the west coast of Chile. Perhaps more worryingly is the very strong weather forecasts for the Cape Horn region over the next week to 10 days. This is one part of the world you do not want to head out into with a boat that is not 100%. As skipper my overriding responsibility is the safety of Azzam and her crew and this is always at the forefront of my mind. The most important thing right now is that we are in far better shape than we were 48 hours ago and we are moving nicely at 15 knots towards safety. It has been a great team effort over the last few days but we are not getting carried away. Slowly we will sail faster because quicker we sail the more time we buy ourselves to take the next steps. Onboard Azzam everyone remains as determined as ever.

date: Saturday, 31 March 2012 15:57:12 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Nick Dana – 31st March 2012

Saturday, 31 March 2012 | by ADOR

It’s not very often that you’re doing 25 knots in a sailboat while desperately trying to slow down. These yachts just don’t know how to go slow, especially in the Southern Ocean - perhaps there greatest venue for speed. Imagine driving a Ferrari on the Nuremburg Ring in second gear – it just wouldn’t feel right, and it doesn’t with Azzam. Every other wave we steer down the hull shape just reacts, and before you know it we will have catapulted from 12 knots to 24 knots, doubling our speed in a matter of seconds.

Unfortunately for us, slowing down is a necessity at the moment. With an area of our port inside and possibly outside skin delaminated, it would be risky to carry on at pace. After all it’s 1.5mm of carbon that separates us from the frigid waters of the Southern Ocean. While we are confident that our repairs are strong and would likely stand up to the test of more speed, we must introduce it slowly and monitor the weakened area. Thus we have made the turn towards the north east for more favourable conditions. So far so good.

In the meantime we are being patient. Everyone is catching up on rest and taking care of any injuries sustained in the several days of fire-hosing that were endured prior to the damage. While everyone is determined to see the leg through, it is also necessary to explore our contingency plans. Hopefully Cape Horn is still on the cards though…there are a few of us that have had our sites on that goal for a long time now.

date: Saturday, 31 March 2012 15:53:58 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 30th March 2012

Friday, 30 March 2012 | by ADOR


It’s amazing how quickly your priorities can change from racing to survival. One minute we were riding the back of a front making 500 miles a day towards Cape Horn getting a real taste of the Southern Ocean and with designs on a 4th or even 3rd place, the next we were genuinely concerned for our own safety as we sat with a damaged hull in freezing conditions 1,700 miles from the nearest landfall.

When the drama started I was on deck with Adil [Khalid] and Si Fi [Simon Fisher] facing 35 knots of wind in the pitch black. We were sailing with three reefs in the main and the number 4 jib. Despite having little sail area we had still picked up some huge waves and were hitting speeds of over 30 knots. Suddenly the call came from below to slow down as they had heard some ‘worrying noises’. On further investigation we confirming the crunching sounds were coming from sheared core material in the hull’s port side.

This in itself was not a problem but more bad waves could rapidly propagate the damage and worse still the outer and inner skins could be breached. This has already happened to Groupama and Sanya in this race with near disastrous effects. The damaged hull shell was flexing like rubber and we needed to stop the impact of the waves on Azzam’s side and try to brace the hull from the inside to give it some support. Trying to stop waves hitting the hull is pretty hard in over 30 knots of wind and large seas but Rob [Greenhalgh] spent hours on deck helming and doing his best. The next job was to chop up some bunks and stacking bays to jam in between the hull and the deck to support the hull panel temporarily. The rest of the night was spent nursing the boat downwind and hoping things didn’t deteriorate.

After consulting with the boat’s builders and designers we soon had a plan for a remedial repair but it would have to wait for daylight. Believe it or not the repair was to drill through the hull and bolt the hull laminate back together. Fortunately we carry threaded rod for just such an occurrence so Wade [Morgan] and Craig [Satterthwaite] set about getting all the materials ready. They chopped up other carbon panels in the boat to make a whole new ‘inner skin’ to glue and bolt to the sides. By lunchtime we were ready to tip Azzam on its side and send Justin [Slattery] over on a halyard in a survival suit and harness to push 32 bolts through the holes as they were drilled from the inside. I could never have imagined drilling 32 10 mm holes through the bottom of our boat when 1,700 miles from land with no possibility of rescue.

We spent the best part of five hours hove to with the boat on its side to keep the water off the port side while the work was done. We are now back sailing cautiously as daylight turns into darkness. The repair seems strong so far and the crunching noises have stopped. We are currently just edging our way north east for better weather and to edge closer to land. As yet I cannot confirm our plans moving forward.

Currently the safety of the boat and crew remains the only priority and I am considerably more relaxed about that now than I was 24 hours ago. Only in adversity do you really get the full measure of a team’s strength and today everybody played their part in stabilising what could have been a very serious situation.

date: Friday, 30 March 2012 15:45:03 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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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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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 29th March 2012

Thursday, 29 March 2012 | by ADOR


Right now the Southern Ocean is showing us who is boss. We are just shy of 50 degrees south and since the passage of the front 36 hours ago we have had sustained 30 – 40 knot winds. We are sailing with two reefs in the main and the J4, which is pretty controllable, but the sea state is horrendous as it remains confused behind the front.

We are sailing hard but trying to minimise the slamming as much as we can. It has been an eventful 24 hours with nighttime surfs up to 40 knots (Si Fi claimed that one), helmsmen being washed off the wheel (well that was me and luckily I landed in Craig’s lap) and the piece de resistance the crash tack. Nocka can claim this one but had mitigating circumstances as the wind gear blew off the top of the mast and the numbers he was steering to in - the pitch black - went haywire.

My last words to him before he started helming were ‘whatever you do… don’t Chinese gybe in to windward’. He took me to my word and as the numbers indicated he was going to crash gybe he steered hard up to weather. The net result was an inadvertent tack and ensuing capsize. It was bizarre down below trying to get dressed standing on the walls. It was remarkably peaceful. Once we got some boys on deck we managed to tack the runners, centre the keel back down and get sailing again. After a good check of everything we were off again.

A very lucky escape. So we have just under 2,000 miles to Cape Horn and it looks like it will be windy all the way. Hopefully the waves will sort themselves out a bit but either way the next five days are going to be anything but dull.

date: Thursday, 29 March 2012 11:59:58 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Nick Dana – 28th March 2012

Wednesday, 28 March 2012 | by ADOR

Once More Into The Breach, Dear Friends, Once More

Not only are have we finally joined the battle in the Southern Ocean, but we just hit forty knots while surfing down wave. Finally! We’re into Azzam’s conditions – keep an eye on the scheds, at the moment we are averaging around 23 -24 knots of boat speed with a reef in the main and a j4. So far it has been plenty of sail area and will probably keep us on our ear throughout the night. The forecast has us into this frontal line for at least the next 24 hours. 25 -30 knots of breeze with a following sea and we’re pointed right at the barn door – should tick off the miles nicely now.

It’s amazing what the addition of adrenaline does to a team’s mood. For the past 4-5 hours we have all been on deck hooting and hollering at whoever is driving, egging them on for a good stack into the next wave. Paul [Willcox] managed to fill the cockpit up enough to make it look like an above-ground swimming pool. Needless to say, we all went swimming. The boat is handling fantastic – this is the first time we have really had her in this kind of situation and everyone is very pleased.

The night has brought a bitter cold. You are able to see your breath down below, and the condensation has become ridiculous. Everything is soaked. Jules [Salter] and I are in our little war trying to keep electronics somewhat dry and functional. It’s difficult though, nothing is meant to work in this type of environment. Sometimes you’re better off just closing everything up and going for a ride on deck. Definitely one of the better night skies you will ever see on the planet.

date: Wednesday, 28 March 2012 14:59:49 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 27th March 2012

Tuesday, 27 March 2012 | by ADOR

Soon we will be able to lay the ice gate and it will be time to gybe and head south east for Cape Horn. This will mark the first time in a long time that we have been able to ‘point at the target’ and therefore stop losing miles to the leaders.

Jules’ original estimate when looking at the weather was that we would end up 1,500 miles behind the leaders and as always he looks to be fairly accurate. Preparing ourselves for this has been the key to not letting frustration creep in. Hopefully the fun can now start as we try to pull the miles back. We have a fairly windy forecast ahead but hopefully nothing too dramatic. To be honest we need some wind as this must be the longest time (8 days) it could ever have taken a Volvo 70 to sail 2,000 miles from Auckland! The important thing though is that we are still in A1 condition and ready for the long distance that still lays ahead.

I am gutted for my friend ‘Nico’, skipper of Camper TNZ. I have spoken to both him and Volvo HQ by e-mail and we have agreed to keep a close eye on them in case they need assistance. They have great guys onboard so I am confident they won’t need our help but soon we will be within one day’s sail of them. We have also learnt of Telefonica’s problems but we don’t know the real extent of them. Hopefully we can reel them in by Brazil whether they have to stop or not.

This is always the point in this race when you question quite why we are out here in these crazy boats. We are over 1,000 miles from land (a tiny island to the north) and over 2000 miles from both Auckland and Chile. We live in a world where help is nearly always at hand if you need it but right now we are about as far from help as you can possibly get on this planet. I will be a happy man when we start rattling off the miles to Cape Horn. First things first we need to pull off a gybe in 25 knots in the dark – no pressure!

date: Tuesday, 27 March 2012 20:50:34 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Anthony ‘Nocka’ Nossiter– 27th March 2012

Tuesday, 27 March 2012 | by ADOR

Day nine, leg five, and back in the Volvo Ocean Race on the mighty Azzam. Joining this team was an easy decision - I've raced with a lot of these guys before, Ian, Jules, Si-fi, Robbie, Craig - my word, good guys. And then there's Wade from Sydney, my home town. Big Wade (Bubs) is solid and that is what you need out here when it’s all on. When you’re pushing hard in the Southern Ocean on a Cape Horn leg you know it's going to get tougher and tougher. You need to be with guys you can trust when there is so much water coming over the boat you can hardly stand up.

And you have to keep smiling - when it gets hard, humour up. Last night, two am, cold and wet on deck and boy were we into it. I had a good soaking from a random wave that came over the deck with my name on it, and then I heard a quiet Australian voice next to me say, "go hard or go home son..." so I looked over and saw a big smile on Wade’s face. Good mates - good company!

date: Tuesday, 27 March 2012 14:21:25 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Nick Dana – 26th March 2012

Monday, 26 March 2012 | by ADOR

A3 spinnaker up on port board – we’re off. It should be the old ‘one and in’ to the horn now, but that’s always a big call from this distance. Not to mention the funny weather patterns that we are seeing right now for this time of year.

Over the next 48 hours we should see a progressive build in pressure. The sea state shouldn’t get too crazy for three days or so, but the air and water temperature will no doubt drop off quickly. It already has a bite to it now, so I can only imagine what it will feel like with the wind chill and fire hose all revved up. As Rob puts it, “it’s pretty damn cold right now, but I can’t say that too loud because the bowman will tune me up for complaining. Thankfully I don’t have that job!”

There is no question the anticipation is building on board. In fact, most of the day we sit around surmising what might have happened to Camper or Telefonica recently. All we can see is that they have been off the pace for the past 24 hours and seem to be heading due east towards Chile rather than the horn. We all have our theories, but the suspense is killing us! Hopefully everyone is safe in the rest of the fleet…

date: Monday, 26 March 2012 13:44:28 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 26th March 2012

Monday, 26 March 2012 | by ADOR

After two days of next to no wind we are finally moving again. We have the spinnaker up and are heading east along the ice wayline in about 10 knots of wind. So far, with the exception of the first day out of Auckland, we couldn’t have experienced a more different leg to the leaders. We have been praying for wind whilst I suspect they have been praying for the wind to drop much of the time.

It seems surreal that the leaders are now 1100 miles ahead but it doesn’t faze us. Bizarrely moral is very high onboard despite our predicament. I guess this is due to the fact that it has been beyond our control and because of the belief that we will get a break at some point. This leg could still be all about who makes it to Itajai in one piece.

I suspect this will be the last time we see the wind under 10 knots before Cape Horn so we have spent time preparing the boat and sails for windier days ahead. We have a good forecast now and we will race the clock but keep things under control between here and Cape Horn. There is a long way to go and anybody can have problems between now and the finish – including us. The main pass time on our boat has been trying to second guess what may have happened to Camper. They have been slow for 2 days now so must have major problems. We hope the guys and the boat are OK. It appears Telefonica have had problems too.

As any coaching manual will tell you the only thing we can do is ‘control the controllable’. We cannot control those guys. For us we need to make it to the eastern ice waypoint before the next front passes over us, then the hammer will be down all the way to Cape Horn. Hopefully we will soon stop losing miles and some form of fightback can begin.

date: Monday, 26 March 2012 13:43:13 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Nick Dana – 25th March 2012

Sunday, 25 March 2012 | by ADOR

I have a feeling this is the last day I will be writing to you in relative comfort. It’s only so long that you can gently glide through the Southern Ocean without Neptune reminding you just what part of the earth you’re venturing through. Our latest weather models are showing heavier conditions as we get within about 1,500 miles of Cape Horn. Similar to what we are seeing with the fleet now, boat preservation will be paramount. Perhaps even a game changer for us in the leg if we can manage to keep Azzam together and the crew healthy.

In the meantime we will continue to prepare for the tougher conditions. Rope work surveyed, daily rig checks, and any leaks or repairs sorted. If we are still dealing with any of these issues after the incoming low-pressure system has swept us up, it’s already too late. Once in fast reaching or flat running conditions most of the boat becomes inoperable. Even going forward of the chain plates down below becomes extremely dangerous.

Fortunately we have had a little time to prepare for it. Although I’m not sure whether I would have just rather have got getting stuck into it from the start of the leg, rather than being eased in. Either way, the mayhem is coming and we hope we’re ready.

date: Sunday, 25 March 2012 14:48:29 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 25th March 2012

Sunday, 25 March 2012 | by ADOR

They call it the Roaring Forties but right now we are experiencing more of a whimper. We have finally reached the Western ice gate waypoint and must now try and head due east. I say ‘try’ because unfortunately, as we expected, we are now totally becalmed as the centre of the high pressure passes over the top of us.

In 24 hours we should be clear and can start making proper progress towards Cape Horn. The fact that we have known this would happen for a few days means there is no angst onboard and considering our predicament, relatively little frustration. We cannot help but look at the position and wind reports of the boats ahead to even wonder if we aren’t in the best place.

We have no idea what is happening on Camper who have been slow now for over 24 hours and Telefonica also now seem to possibly be suffering problems too. Maybe this offers us a way back on this leg or maybe they will soon be up and running at full speed again soon – who knows. One thing I do know is that the relentless strong winds experienced by the leading pack must be taking their toll. I also know that we will fall much further behind in the next 24 hours before we can try and make any gains. All we can do is to try and scramble as many miles to the east that we can in the wildly shifting, light winds. I am tempted to pray for wind but I have a feeling that in this part of the world that may be a dangerous thing to pray for.

On a positive note it may be chilly but it is a fantastically beautiful night on deck – it’s not so often you get to see bright stars in a clear sky in the Southern Ocean!

date: Sunday, 25 March 2012 14:31:07 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Nick Dana – 24th March 2012

Saturday, 24 March 2012 | by ADOR

It was another very slow day aboard Azzam. No tacking, no gybing, not even really any stacking. Just straight line sailing on port tack in less than ten knots of wind, and heaps of sleep. Probably best considering what the rest of the fleet is seeing at the moment and what we will no doubt be swept up in throughout the week ahead.

In the meantime we keep busy by doing our daily checks of the vessel and making sure that when the weather does arrive, we’re ready. This usually entails a few laps around the interior socialising with whomever you may run into en route to nowhere. A few dozen checks of what’s in the day bag (never changes, same thing every day) and maybe a cup of coffee that you didn’t even really want. Often times you will find yourself in an area of the boat with absolutely no idea why you ended up there. It’s what I imagine a university social experiment would be like – eleven guys for three weeks cannot move more than 60 feet from one another with little to no connection to the outside world. Thankfully it only feels like this during drift off conditions.

Big day in ornithology – we saw at least two Royal Albatross’s and possibly a couple of Sooty Albatross. Along with a bunch of Giant Petrels that circled the boat for hours trying to love up on our 30 foot falcon graphic on the mainsail. It’s all going on out here in the Southern Ocean – more of the same for the next two days until we’re back in breeze again.

date: Saturday, 24 March 2012 09:41:36 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 23rd March 2012

Friday, 23 March 2012 | by ADOR

Right now as our competitors sail away at over 20 knots straight down the course we have an unenviable decision to make. As a bubble of high pressure (light wind) grows directly in our path we can either try to sail around it to the north, both adding distance and the possibility of sailing upwind, or we can gybe and head south directly into the high and very light winds.

Salvation would have been to go further south but we are constrained by the ice limits so that is not an option. The question is which way will lose us the less distance? Going north sounds better as it is more proactive, we should keep moving through the water (i.e. not totally becalmed) and the recent weather model suggests a slight benefit, but going south is safer as it means we will be better positioned when the next weather system eventually heads east.

The southerly route also keeps us nearer to the rhumb line should things change for the better. As you can see it is not a great choice so we must look elsewhere for good news. Firstly we have enjoyed some nice downwind sailing conditions, secondly Azzam and crew are in good shape and perhaps most importantly we are still getting closer to Cape Horn (albeit slower than we would like).

The same cannot be said of Sanya and we really feel for those guys. They were again sailing a good leg and getting good speed out of the older boat. I know how hard it was to turn around when only 40 miles out from Auckland let alone over 1,000 miles. We wish those guys good luck and hope they can rejoin the race soon.

Back onboard Azzam the next few days are going to need a lot of patience a there will be a lot of lost miles. Sanya’s misfortune is a timely reminder that Itajai remains a long way away and this is still an exercise in managing ourselves and our boat. We must hope that we get through this tricky bit better than it appears in the weather and that we get a chance to catch up later in the leg.

date: Friday, 23 March 2012 17:12:52 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Nick Dana – 23rd March 2012

Friday, 23 March 2012 | by ADOR

We often miss the big picture when we’re stuck on our 70 foot carbon box. Computer screens that constantly remind us of our deficit or our unfortunate weather forecasts don’t show the values of what we are still achieving. The Southern Ocean is one of the planet’s least hospitable environments and we not only journey through it, we race as fast as humanly possible across it. As Jules [Salter] and I were discussing today, it was not too many years ago that sailors and explorers just felt lucky to have made it through these treacherous waters alive.

Perhaps the big picture suddenly matters because it’s my first time rounding the horn, or maybe its the thought of dodging icebergs at 30 knots that has me completely tweaked. Whatever it is, the further we get south the more stoked I get on the adventure and the less our position in the fleet matters. We have had some tough legs so far this race, and no doubt we have had our moments where jumping off seemed like a viable option. Losing sucks – but in the end you have to deal with harden up, step back and take in the radical experience that only a handful of people in the world will ever experience.

date: Friday, 23 March 2012 17:10:21 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 22nd March 2012

Thursday, 22 March 2012 | by ADOR

Despite an exciting day or two gaining many miles over the fleet, it is now clear that the leaders are escaping in strong downwind conditions to the south east of us. We have to head north to evade some light winds and the gap between us and the leaders will grow considerably. Everyone onboard knows the likely scenario so we begin our own race against time.

We still hope to catch the fleet up – it may just take a little longer than we had hoped. For a start the weather has a habit of changing… plus 6,000 miles is a long way to Brazil! Right now it looks like there is unlikely going to be an easy way back into this leg - probably not until after Cape Horn.

One result of this is that it means we are going to be all alone across the Southern Ocean. Our safety net - the other boats - will be hundreds of miles away downwind. This is not ideal but it is a situation we knew was very likely when we left Auckland 24 hours after the fleet. It is something we will consider in every decision and move we make.

Another result is that as a team we will need to work hard to maintain the intensity required to sail these boats fast. No longer will motivation be provided by the three hourly position reports that help us judge how we are doing against the other teams - these are meaningless with no boats in the near vicinity or in similar wind. We will continue set our own goals and to work together to maintain our own high standards.

It is typical that we have now finally got the conditions we have been waiting all race for with 17 knots downwind sailing but the fleet are 250 miles away!

There is some good news though. It may be foggy and damp on deck but the sea is still 16 degrees so it is far from cold. Conditions below are ideal and are probably the best we have had for sleeping all race. Azzam and the sails are in perfect shape and it sounds like the crew is less battered than on some other boats.

In other news we were chased by a juvenile albatross today – these birds never cease to put a smile on your face whatever is happening in the race. The team on Azzam is as determined as ever. Spirits remain high – we will just need a bit more patience than normal!

date: Thursday, 22 March 2012 15:50:13 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Nick Dana – 21st March 2012

Wednesday, 21 March 2012 | by ADOR

Slow goings – but at least we’re still laughing. We were hoping to pull into the fleet a bit quicker, but due to a small transition zone of weather that we couldn’t avoid, the breeze has been a bit light. Still, we managed to take about 15 or so miles out of the fleet in the last sched, and about 12 in the previous one. It’s not huge gains when you’re a day behind, but its gains nonetheless.

We’ve found when you have been smacked around out here for a few days it’s always nice to have a little light spell to regain sanity on board. Usually this means multiple social hours on deck during the day with all the watch crews trading stories or arguing about unauthorized food movements that were made in the night. However today’s subject of cannibalism was a bit of a departure from the norm. I will spare the details, but lets just say there is a very strong motivation to not to get stranded in the Southern Ocean with this lot.

I will say it was one of the funniest conversations of my life though and will no doubt keep me chuckling for years to come.

The other interesting parts of the day were centred on the thick fog banks that we’re currently passing through. The swell is still a good 3.5 – 4 metres of the washing machine variety and doesn’t look to be improving any time soon. It’s an eerie place the old Southern Ocean – definitely the most unwelcoming of waters I have ever sailed in.

As Craig [Satterthwaite] puts it, “the further south you go, the closer you feel to dropping of the edge of the planet.” I can believe it, something just tells you we’re not meant to be here. Again – it’s more motivation to get through quickly and safely and begin our northerly climb to more hospitable waters.

Should be one hell of ride to the horn.

date: Wednesday, 21 March 2012 11:17:22 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 21st March 2012

Wednesday, 21 March 2012 | by ADOR

You couldn’t have had two more contrasting nights than our first two at sea on Leg 5. The first was spent in survival conditions with driving rain, strong winds and terrible seas. The second was a beautiful night with clear skies, an improving sea but sadly only about 5 knots of wind.

The good news is that it has allowed us to dry things out, check over Azzam and get some rest. For some it should mean they can eat their first food after a lot of sea sickness on night one. The bad news is a distinct lack of progress towards Brazil. Still today has dawned with a bit more wind and we are making about 14 knots towards the corner of the ice gate.

The outlook doesn’t look too bad for the next few days so we must just find our rhythm and keep the pedal down. Nocka is settling in well after what can only be described as a baptism of fire. He must surely have been wondering what he had signed up to!

date: Wednesday, 21 March 2012 10:02:19 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 20th March 2012

Tuesday, 20 March 2012 | by ADOR

What a horrendous night. After waiting for four hours we decided to have a crack at getting away from Auckland. We heard the wind readings dropping slightly on the radio at the stations upwind of the Channel and got out in the perfect window.

When I say perfect I mean it was only gusting 40 knots and not 60 knots as it was in the hours before and after. It was 30 – 40 knot winds upwind with very confused seas that greeted us as we exited the Colville Channel. With three reefs and a storm jib we have fought our way east to try and escape the clutches of the tropical low. A few tacks later and we have picked up the north easterlies.

It is now down to 20 knots so I am actually able to sit in the nav-station and type. The lads are exhausted after a full night of double standby. I have decided it is best to not watch the fleet positions as it will be too depressing as they escape in freer winds. Our task is simply to get to Brazil safely and as fast as we can – if we are lucky we could catch the fleet but it will not happen overnight and most likely not happen before Cape Horn. We intend to sail as fast as we can and keep everything crossed for a way back in to this leg.

date: Tuesday, 20 March 2012 10:18:32 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Nick Dana – 19th March 2012

Monday, 19 March 2012 | by ADOR

A very tough start to another leg for us aboard Azzam - not only did we bust our j4 bulkhead but we also missed our weather window to leave Auckland on time. The fringe of the low-pressure system that the fleet would have battled against last night has now escaped us, leaving the centre and strongest part of the system directly upon us. Earlier we tried poking our nose out and saw forty-five knots of breeze – about an hour up the track wind readings are showing into the sixties - hurricane force. As of right now we are sitting just off North Head in Auckland harbour biding our time. Similar to the start of last leg, there is never a reason to set sail from relative safety into hurricane force winds.

Our plan is to hold tight for at least another couple hours until the peak of the low passes. In reality, we are already a day or so behind in the leg. Caning ourselves, and our boat in 60+ knots will do us no good. In fact, it may even help our cause to wait the extra hours and then sail a proper course. None of this has been easy, and believe it or not, we would rather have been getting thrashed last night with the rest of the fleet then tucked up in a hotel room watching the leg slip away from us online.

Furthermore – we must not forget the absolutely massive effort of our shore team this stopover and in particular last night. It is a tall order to have one of these machines fully serviced in a week. But to have a major structural repair done in essentially 12 hours is nearly a miracle. Not to mention all the efforts of the logistics team and management that took care of everything we needed and allowed us to get some sleep. Well done! Now it’s time to go hammer out some miles and attempt to dig back into the fleet – don’t count us out just yet. Azzam’s got some legs on her downwind…

date: Monday, 19 March 2012 14:21:53 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 19th March 2012

Monday, 19 March 2012 | by ADOR

Thanks to a fantastic effort by our shore team we were able to leave the Viaduct with everything fixed four hours ahead of schedule. We can’t thank you all enough guys and girls for your work – a great team effort.

All we needed then was a break from the weather to get us back in the race – the other boats are only 200 miles away after all. Sadly we have exactly the opposite - we have the meteorological equivalent of a kick in the guts. Right now we are trapped in the windy section of the tropical low with storm force winds between us and the lighter winds to the East.

We need to exit the Colville Channel where the winds notoriously funnel along the Coromandel Range but the weather stations are reporting 50 knot average winds and gusts in the low 60s. This is more than enough wind to put our boat, sails and people in serious danger.

We are stuck in a real dilemma – do we take on the storm force winds when we have little to gain by doing so or shall we hold on and wait for the winds to abate thereby losing more miles and time to our competitors. To set off when we are already a day behind the fleet and risk putting ourselves out of the race would be foolish and yet to wait is the most frustrating thing on earth. We are trying to keep this entire leg in context and manage the risk appropriately.

We have decided to hold for a few hours in the lee of the islands of the Hauraki Gulf and monitor the weather stations as this tropical low is a very active and fast changing phenomenon. Hopefully we can resume racing and get on our way as soon as possible.

date: Monday, 19 March 2012 08:27:58 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 10th March 2012

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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Team Blog – Nick Dana – 10th March 2012

Saturday, 10 March 2012 | by ADOR

“Look at that boys – god’s country, breath it in!” This is how Craig Satterthwaite greeted the on deck watch this afternoon shortly after the ‘land ho!’ was called. Apart from the lone Aussie on board (Bubs), everyone had a good little chuckle at the comment. The rest of the afternoon Craig and Justin Ferris (the two Kiwis on board) were back and forth discussing the different landmarks and arguing over the Maori tribes names of the bits of land. The rest of us just sat back and were quietly stoked by the fact we were finally here.

Thinking about it now, the only other bit of land we have seen since our start in Sanya was the Solomon island chain - a long way to go looking at an empty horizon. Never mind though, because now we are staring at the huge cliffs of North Cape and the past 20 days are now buried in the very back of our minds. It has been a tough race from China, but if we are to be ready for the next leg and the treachery of the southern ocean – we must focus on what’s ahead. Though I’m sure there will be a few sodas and stories shared over the next couple days.

Tuesday is our day off this week, but its already looking like most of us will be at work anyway. One day of fun is not worth twenty of misery if the boat still leaks in the southern ocean. Even right now everyone is fighting to get to the computer to finalize their work list for the upcoming week. Luckily the boat is in relatively good shape and the shore crew should be able to work through the lists during the short stopover period. Finish tomorrow after lunch… now just worried that we may have trouble walking properly seeing as though we haven’t been on land in such a long time!

Happy birthday to my brother Eli too!

date: Saturday, 10 March 2012 16:03:59 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Nick Dana – 9th March 2012

Friday, 09 March 2012 | by ADOR

This leg is starting to feel like we’re running in mud. The closer we get to the finish the more resistance we encounter. The current is against us, five-metre ocean swells and dead up wind. Oh yes, and the breeze is supposed to drop below 10 knots again in the next few hours. Thus we have now dubbed our journey ‘the leg that just won’t die!’ Our ETA remains Sunday lunchtime, but we’re not counting our chickens until we can see sky tower on the horizon.

If you are watching the tracker you’ll have noticed we just tacked for a few hours and have just gone back. (If you stopped watching the tracker during our 1,000+ miles of easting towards Hawaii, fair enough!) This recent tack was the result of the upcoming wind shift and pressure change that the fleet ahead of us is experiencing at the moment. Possibly the only benefit we have bringing up the rear is to not make the same mistakes or get caught out as those ahead have done. Additionally, Team Sanya along with us will be carrying more pressure in from behind and should inevitable compress with Camper towards the finish. Whether it will be enough to shot at fourth place may be a tough one, but we are fighting for every inch right now.

date: Friday, 09 March 2012 11:50:55 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Nick Dana – 8th March 2012

Thursday, 08 March 2012 | by ADOR

It’s finally beginning to feel like the home stretch of leg 4 on board Azzam. Next weeks daily plans in Auckland are starting to formulate and talk of the best pie shop in town has already led to much dispute. A couple of us have already sorted out where we are going surfing, and others where to go fishing. It’s a shame that we’re not in NZ longer, but I’m sure we will be able to cram a few weeks worth of fun into a couple days.

Right now it’s looking like Sunday afternoon local time that we will hopefully be rolling into town. However, this far down in the southern hemisphere, it’s never a straight call as to what the weather is doing. Our strategy at the moment is cover our lead over Sanya and possibly start taking miles out of Camper while they’re in lighter breeze and we are charging in from behind with more pressure. No doubt it will be tough to make it back on them with fewer than 800 miles to go though, so we’re being realistic about it.

Unfortunately as I’m writing this and looking over at the instruments in the nav-station, the breeze has just dropped below 12 knots again. The current is now opposing the breeze as well - creating an unpleasant chop that our ‘super tanker bow’ loves to plough violently into. Definitely need an iPod to sleep through the off watch now.

Artists of the week:

Pacific Watch (Craig and Bubs): Fleetwood Mac

Atlantic Watch (Rob and Juddy): Nothing…they forgot their iPods.

date: Thursday, 08 March 2012 14:21:43 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 7th March 2012

Wednesday, 07 March 2012 | by ADOR

If anybody ever asks me to go to New Caledonia they can forget it I am not going. Three weeks ago I didn’t even know where New Caledonia was, I haven’t even been within 100 miles of the place but I don’t like it and I never want to go. We have spent all day fighting to escape a huge cloud and no wind that spun up to leeward of New Caledonia today. I wouldn’t have felt so hard done by if we hadn’t had a conservative strategy of staying on Groupama and Puma’s line 100 miles offshore of the island.

Groupama and Puma sailed on by without missing a beat and we lost 100 miles at least! I guess it was all in the timing. It was tough to go further West off the island as that would have meant reaching down behind Camper and conceding fourth place – and it may not have actually helped as the cloud grew so far West. Had this blow not come hot on the heels of the three boats escaping to the West I wouldn’t have minded quite so much. Anyway there is no time for feeling sorry for ourselves we have a battle on with Sanya, we have to try and still catch Camper and we have a race to be ready for the next leg. The wind is building, we are nearly pointing at Auckland and there is just over 1100 miles to go – life isn’t too bad we’ll try and get there for the weekend.

date: Wednesday, 07 March 2012 15:19:16 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 6th March 2012

Tuesday, 06 March 2012 | by ADOR

I couldn’t bring myself to write a blog for the last 2 days for 2 reasons. Firstly we were having a torrid time trying to get round the top of the Solomon Islands for a day, then we have been having just as bad a time trying to get through our own mini doldrums into the South East trades. All the while this was going on, the boats that were behind and couldn’t lay the Solomon Islands were being offered a ‘get out of jail free’ card in the West.

So after sailing so well and pushing hard to get into 3rd we now find ourselves in 5th but hopefully with a shot still at Camper. The leaders have been able to extend away from the lighter winds to a very impressive lead. So what has brought me to the keyboard? Well, firstly I feel a lot better after a fresh water shower in a huge rain cloud earlier today – the sight of 11 hairy, smelly guys running around covering themselves in shower gel in the rain was very amusing. Secondly we have just made a nice gain back at Camper and so maybe we still have a chance to convert our Easterly position into gains.

Everyone is also feeling a bit more upbeat now because we have our fraction zero up and are going reasonably fast towards Auckland for the first time in days. A lot of focus is already being put on the Auckland stopover – and how short it is going to be. The shore crews are going to have to really be on their game to turn the fleet around in a couple of days. There will be no time to order and make spares there – everything we need has to be put in action now so any spare time onboard is spent co-ordinating job lists and parts lists with them. The sailors have to get their heads around the fact that after 25 days straight sailing they will only get one or two days off before taking on the Southern Ocean.

This will be particularly hard on the kiwis who are looking forward to precious time at home after long stints abroad. Anyway – the best thing we can do on all counts is to get to Auckland as fast as we can. We still haven’t given up hope of getting there faster than a few boats around us.

Ian Walker

0430 6th March

16 45S 161 55E

date: Tuesday, 06 March 2012 19:14:30 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 3rd March 2012

Saturday, 03 March 2012 | by ADOR

Today has been a big decision day for the navigators and skippers from third place back. The strong west going current and headed winds meant that boats in there were looking unlikely to clear to the east of the Solomon Islands. This would mean huge losses to tack up to those of us further east or they could try to go through the islands. The weather models also swung slightly in favour of a more western route today and so it appears the decisions were made.

For Telefonica and Sanya this would have been frustrating after fighting to get up to the east, but yet a relatively easy decision due to the fact they were furthest west. For Camper it would have been very hard as they would be giving up on Telefonica, but able to consolidate over Sanya. Onboard Abu Dhabi we were caught a bit between the devil and the deep blue sea. To turn down west would have meant giving up Telefonica and Camper but would have consolidated over Sanya. To carry on east means a chance of third place (unless we can catch Groupama or Puma) but also a big risk of ending up last. This would be infuriating after sailing such a solid leg to date.

For Puma and Groupama there was no decision to be made as they are committed to the east. So who will win… East or West? It is fair to say that it is fluctuating between weather models as to which should be the favoured route. There are also some considerable unknowns such as the extent of any wind shadows under the mountains in the Solomon Islands and the very variable weather predictions. For sure the westerly route is risky (we have been looking at it for a few days now) but if you are at the back of the fleet or if all the boats behind you follow what is there to lose?

Having been in third place we have the most to lose, but to go west would have been to give up two positions anyway. This must be great viewing for the armchair navigators at home and whilst we are well and truly on our own out here now there will be much anticipation of each and every position report.

date: Saturday, 03 March 2012 16:04:09 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Wade Morgan – 2nd March 2012

Friday, 02 March 2012 | by ADOR

Hi there! Bubs here! A busy watch just over, lots of rainy squalls, top wind speed of 38 knots, top boat speed around 33 knots, great stuff. Seems like the constant ‘pressure washing’ is over for the time being and we get a chance to dry out. The workshop has been closed today, no issues onboard and Azzam is running very smoothly, lots of good mile gains to show for it so spirits are high. We have prepared Big Breeze’s (Paul Willcox) ‘breakfast from King Neptune’ for the morning equator crossing ceremony… expect a feature from Nick on that one.

After two weeks and 2331 miles to Auckland, I sit here and the mind begins to think of arrival. I’m looking forward to seeing my wife and daughter, she has some new ballet moves to show me so that will be great to see. Catching up with old kiwi friends and a few old haunts from when I used to spend a bit of time there is on the to do list as well.

Also Joyce if your reading this I have surveyed the lads and we would love 11 chunky pepper steak ponsonby pies and say another half dozen mixed variety when we get in if that can be arranged. Oh, and Ailsa can you sort the Coke Cola! Thanks!!!

date: Friday, 02 March 2012 13:07:58 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 2nd March 2012

Friday, 02 March 2012 | by ADOR

Finally we are really seeing the benefit of being in the east and today we have passed both Camper and Telefonica to hold third place. The positioning of the boats doesn’t really tell the full story though as we are getting tested regularly by huge clouds and rain squalls which try their best to push us off course. Some squalls have been up to 38 knots and have resulted in us having to sail 60 degrees off course to weather them.

It is a real test for the crews who need to rapidly reduce sail as fast as they can and hang on tight until the rain squall passes. It is then a race to get back to full sail as the wind drops away behind the cloud. In the day time this is not too bad as you can see the clouds and plot your path through them, but at night it takes on a whole new dimension. The only tool we have to help us is our radar that can pick up the rain signaling the advancing squalls. It is safe to say new have been getting better at this with practice but there remains a slight element of luck as to which clouds hit you, how hard and when. One cloud can make or lose you tens of miles so as the sun goes down over the horizon we will be looking to ride the front edge of as many as we can in the darkness tonight.

The only frustration aboard has been the downtime we have had due to some minor breakages. When you are travelling at 20 knots, having to slow down for even 20 minutes results in many lost miles. I suspect we have lost about 20 miles now but I also suspect we are not alone in this after a punishing few days at breakneck speed.

Looking forward we have some very interesting navigational challenges ahead. For now we are constrained by the Solomon Islands which we must pass to the east of but after that some big decisions will need to be made. Right now the fleet remains very tightly packed and I don’t think even Groupama can be sleeping easy as the fleet compresses into the back of them. Another person who will not be sleeping easy is Paul Willcox. He is 75 miles away from his first Equator crossing and King Neptune is growing very restless.

date: Friday, 02 March 2012 12:27:31 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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Team Blog – Ian Walker – 1st March 2012

Thursday, 01 March 2012 | by ADOR

We are now about halfway into our drag race across the trade winds and the wind has been starting to abate. It’s not that it has been particularly windy - perhaps averaging 22 knots, but we have been sailing at 90 degrees to the wind which is fast and the exact angle to propel all the water straight over the deck and whoever is standing in its way.

The toll is starting to add up both in minor impact injuries to crew (ribs, legs etc) and minor breakages to the boat. Our most major breakage yesterday was the jib tack ram which snapped clean in half. Fortunately we had a safety line in place to save the jib and Justin and Bubs have been able to rig up a jury system that seems to be holding so far. The whole event cost us about 10 miles. Otherwise most of the issues are minor but very annoying. The toilet blocked last night - not a nice job for two people bouncing around in there.

All but three drinks bottles have washed away and some minor but persistent leaks have lead to a minor electrical fire (Nick's lap top charger) and some less than desirable conditions below. Jules and my shared bunk has two nice water features over it. One drips on your head every 30 seconds and the other builds up a nice pool of water that is tipped onto you at waist height every time the boat over heels! It's a good job it is warm and the sleeping bags are made of goretex.

None of this can prepare you for the conditions on deck however and harness lines have been mandatory for a couple of days. It is hard to move around and real care must be taken when moving from the hatch to the 'safe zone' in the back windward corner. In the racing we have been going well, gaining miles on our nearest boats, but it will get harder from here on as we will lose the benefit of more lifted wind in the east. It feels great to be right in the mix and it also feels good to see the estimated time of arraival coming forward all the time to Auckland thanks to some potentially favourable weather.

In summary Azzam is slightly bruised but still charging along well.

date: Thursday, 01 March 2012 15:27:19 (Arabian Standard Time, UTC+04:00)

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مدونة عادل خالد عضو فريق أبوظبي للمحيطات

Thursday, 01 March 2012 | by ADOR

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كانت آخر زيارة لي إلى الصين عام 2008، وخضت حينها تجربة رائعة في سباقات القوارب الشراعية من فئة "ليزر" ضمن دورة الألعاب الأولمبية. ومنحتني عودتي إلى هذا البلد مجدداً فرصة إلقاء نظرة على التقدم الذي أحرزته خلال السنوات الـ 4 الماضية سواء على الصعيد الشخصي أو الرياضي.

ويختلف عالمي اليوم كثيراً عن عالمي خلال تلك الفترة، فقد تخليت عن السباقات الفردية التي تستغرق ساعات معدودة لأتوجه إلى سباق جماعي أجوب فيه العالم على مدى 9 أشهر متواصلة من التحدي والمغامرة، وكل ذلك في تجربة فريدة ستترك في نفسي انطباعاً مذهلاً عن هذه المنافسة التي أخوضها مع مجموعة من أعتى البحارة وأكثرهم خبرة على مستوى العالم. وقد أتاح لي ذلك إمكانية اختبار روح العمل الجماعي والتعاون بطريقة لم أعهدها من قبل؛ فعندما كنت أشارك في سباقات القوارب الشراعية من طراز "ليزر"، كنت لوحدي دون أي مساعدة. أما الآن، فأنا مع 10 زملاء يمدّون لي يد العون وأتشارك معهم أفراح ومصاعب هذه الرحلة الأسطورية.

غادرنا ميناء سانيا الصيني لنمخر عباب المحيط على متن "عزّام" متوجهين إلى نيوزيلندا في الجولة الرابعة من السباق، والتي لا بد لنا من إحراز نتيجة جيّدة فيها لكي نحافظ على آمالنا باحتلال أحد المراكز الثلاثة الأولى، فالنجاح هو الهدف الذي يصبو إليه الجميع في هذه الملحمة البحرية.

وتتسم هذه الجولة بشيء من الغرابة، فقد قرر المنظمون إطلاقها على مرحلتين نظراً للظروف الجوية السيئة؛ حيث قطعنا في المرحلة الأولى مسافة 40 ميل بحري بعد انطلاقنا من ميناء سانيا، واسترحنا خلال الليل لنواصل السباق صباح يوم الاثنين. وأنا أستطيع تفهّم هذا القرار جيداً، إذ من الأفضل للفرق المتنافسة أن تنتظر قليلاً ريثما تهدأ شدة الرياح الخطرة بهدف حماية القوارب والطواقم المشاركة من أي ضرر محتمل. وكما قال ملاحنا، فإن هذا السباق هو منافسة رياضية في نهاية المطاف وليس معركة حتى الموت.

وعلى أي حال، نحن سعداء لكوننا في أعالي المحيط مجدداً ولو أن الأيام القليلة الأولى من الجولة كانت صعبة إلى حد كبير. وقد تعرّض زميلنا ويد مورجان لإصابة في رأسه على متن المركب، ولكنه لحسن الحظ لم يتأذ كثيراً. إلا أن الحادثة بحد ذاتها جاءت لتذكرنا مجدداً بوجوب أخذ ما نقوم به على محمل الجد، والاستعداد على أكمل وجه لكل ما قد يباغتنا من حالات طارئة.

وليس لدينا فكرة حقيقية عما قد نواجهه خلال الأسابيع القادمة، فالطقس يتغير بشكل دائم. وكانت الجولة السابقة أسوأ جولة على الإطلاق في تاريخ السباق من حيث صعوبة الأحوال الجوية.

ويبدو أن هذه الجولة ستكون صعبة هي الأخرى، حيث أخذت الرياح تشتد مترافقةً مع ارتفاع في الأمواج كلما ابتعدنا أكثر عن جزيرة هاينان إلى درجة أصبحنا فيها عاجزين عن فعل أي شيء على متن المركب، ولم نعد نستطيع التحكم بالأشرعة أو دفة القيادة كما يجب.

واسمحوا لي أن أترككم الآن على أمل أن تحمل المدوّنة القادمة أخباراً أكثر إيجابية


date: Thursday, 01 March 2012 10:05:43 (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.