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Crew member on SWE1929 SCA

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Team SCA, along with Azzam, Campos, Alvimedica, and Dongfeng, are leading

the fleet up and around Muckle Flugga, the northern tip of the Shetland

Islands. Currently Team SCA is 35nm behind Alvimedica and Dongfeng, and we

are gaining on them quickly with every passing minute.

On the first day out we found ourselves in a tricky position, Libby

explained. The other boats were still using the A3, the downwind sail,

even though we had reached the maximum safety wind limit for the sail. We

changed the sail but that forced us to put in more gybes along the Dover

Coast, and the other boats sailed past.

We then found ourselves in another situation with wind farms. According to

Libby, there was only a mile of safe gybing area, to the West, so we made

the call to go outside the wind farms. We thought there was a gap between

two large farms but it turned out there was another wind farm! This forced

us to go 30 miles in the wrong direction. It goes without saying, that it

was a massive learning opportunity for all of us, and we are now gaining

back some lost miles on the other Volvo Ocean 65s.

We had quite the day in the North Sea as well. Up here the seas are very

cold and weve had the biggest sea state we've encountered so far in our

training. Sam kept saying it reminded her of the Southern Ocean.

Yesterday, Annie was hit by a wave with such force that she had trouble

hearing out of one ear. With the sea state this large, everyone and

everything is wet and chilly. When asked how to explain life at the

moment, the girls can only say one word: wet. To do a maneuver on the bow,

the girls need a snorkel. To trim the sails, a snorkel is preferred but

the girls have opted for ski goggles. Inside the boat, we are constantly

bailing cold water out from all corners of the boat. Fortunately, for most

of us, despite a few damp arms and jackets, our toes and bodies are warm!

It goes without saying further that it's very fun and very (very) wet!

The waves are relentless! Abby said.

One particularly interesting thing about our current location is we are

300nm further north of our most southern point when rounding the Cape Horn

in a few months. The sea is cold and we have been trailed by curious sea

birds gliding through the air. (I wish I had my birding book!) Needless to

say, being this far North, is quite an exciting milestone for all of us on

Team SCA!

This is some of the best driving ever, Sophie exclaimed, This is so

epic!

I feel exhilarated, Dee said, Were all a little bit fatigued, but

were loving what we are doing and everyone is giving it 100%, so its a

good race.

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