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Crew member on GBR9793T Cheeki Rafiki

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The coldest night so far, up the northwest coast of Shetland, round to Muggle Flugga (isn't that a name you want to spell badly) and the heading out to Ireland.

The north sea has been kind to us but even so this was tough for those on deck.

The stormy sunrise was a welcome end for blue watches 0200 to 0600 shift, and all on one cup of hot chocolate and some dried apricots. No sail changes this time although it came close as the wind dropped early on. Wind was mostly North West 12-15 knots.

The phones and internet all sprang into life as we got close to Shetland and civilisation. This gave our first glimpse at how the race is going for 3 days. It's great to receive emails and texts from friends and loved ones, wishing us well and offering advice.

It really is 'game on' now with two of our class only a few hours ahead. Discussion now moves onto how to catch up! Faced with all the crew's increased expectations on his shoulders Gareth has gone to bed!

Plan A seems to be to try to break things less often, trim things more often and keep pushing south. Works for me.

We know the other guy's are good but we've beaten them in the past, so we're going to give it a go.

Now it's a snooze for blue watch (Gareth, Ken, Gary and Brett), back on at 1200hrs. Red watch (Steven, Nick, John and Martin) are pushing on to Ireland

Ken (blogger and crew) Allison

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To: My hotmail

ReplyTo: My hotmail

Subject: GBR9793T Cheeki Rafiki 2708 2300hrs passing Shetland and the Skeirries

Sent: Aug 27, 2010 10:32 PM

And red shift just did a record breaker for us (blue) to beat, covering 49Nm on the

6hrs from 1200 to 1800hrs. We (blue watch) took on the challenge and sailed straight into force 6's, no excuses though, the red boys won the day.

The wind picked up from 1800, still north west with heavy cumulus in the near and far distance giving wind shear headaches for the helm.

We're on the nr 3 sail now following red shifts sail change around 1400hrs.

The shetlands are visible in low cloud on the port horizon. They looked beautiful as the sunset, but clearly tough place to live.

Before the watch change we had a long discussion about our course between Nick, Gary, Ken and John trading off the options, keeping tight to Shetland on 350 or being cautious on 000. We went for 000 knowing we can review later. This took is 8nm east of. The Skerries lighthouse , we then headed best to wind going hard for Lamba.

Great meal half way through from Gareth.

A really lively helming game if you like belting towards the squalls in poor visibility!

Got a text from my son reminding us to take a hard left soon! They are obviously watching the track back home.

Red watch are back on now with Nick on the helm aiming to get us to the top. We'll take over again at 0200, to finish the job and head round the top before looking for Ireland.

What an amazing race.


Sent from my BlackBerry wireless device

Sent from my BlackBerry wireless device

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