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Race Archives

2014 Blogs

Skipper on GBR 1702 Scarlet Logic

Crew member Richard Walsh was safely transferred to the Kirkwall lifeboat at just before midnight on Friday night.

The weather moving in from the west had been of concern to us, to pass Sular Sgeir would now entail a beat in gale force conditions, compounding the already challenging conditions we were expecting. We feel that having called upon the assistance of the coastguard and RNLI it would be inappropriate to head back on to the race course at this stage.

Having studied the forecast, it seems that we would be waiting at least 48hrs to get a sensible weather window to round Sular Sgair, the later part of our race would then see very light winds, delaying our finish further.

We have taken the difficult but perhaps inevitable decision to retire from the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland race. It has been a memorable race, with some fantastic and challenging sailing with a great team. We are very proud to have lead our class for such a long part of the race.

This race is over for us, we wish our fellow competitors safe and rewarding sailing for the remainder of the race, we will come back out fighting the next time!

We would like to thank the very professional Shetland coastguard, and the dedicated capable team aboard the Kirkwell RNLI Lifeboat for their invaluable assistance with getting Richard the quickest possible medical assistance.

Ross Applebey

Crew on IRL3607 Lula Belle

Day 2

We are really getting hammered by the strong winds. Brian seen 40's again today. We have had our nav tri light blown off the mast and took the wind index with it. This not only means we can not tell wind strength and direction. But we can not use auto pilot to wind. This makes sail changes much more difficult.

We also had our new main sail tear today. Not to big I think we will be able to repair it.

Life on board has settled into our 2 hours on 2 off routine. It's amazing how quickly time passes in this system.

But with winds above 30 all the time everything on board is physically very difficult. Walking around cooking even sleeping is like been in a tumble dryer.

Can't wait for tomorrow. Let's hope no more breakages.

Day 3

We managed to cover 170 miles yesterday despite all the breakage. Today the wind has dropped to the more manageable 20's. We had to stop for an hour and repair the. Main sail.

wave direction and tides seem to turn against us today

Only 125 miles covered today. Not a productive day.


Crew Member on GBR 5236 Rare

Back into another weather system we go... Seems like the lovely 10-15kts that we had yesterday have been long gone. We had a little motivation boost as once we tacked at Norway we were headed straight for Mukkle! It was rather strange having everything on the opposite side... After 4 days you get used to things!

Day 4 ended with a little laughter when Ian dove head first into the bunk and once the oilies were off he fell asleep in what would normally be defined as the reversed position.

Ps. James, keep on fighting buddy we're rooting for you up here.

Day - 5
Awoke to Ian tacking the boat whilst my bunk was still in the upwind position, ie i ended up on the side of the boat in a state of disarray. This tacking nonsense continued until I could untangle myself from the bag. It was worth it though as we had reached the most northerly point in the UK, and it was spectacular! What made it even better (should have thought about it earlier) was we had phone signal and could touch base with friends and family.

It all ended too soon with Shetland Coastguard forecasting force 5/6 and maybe more, oh and did I mention all upwind?? That also meant a Jib change and getting wet :( but atleast the boat is more manageable now.

Crew member on GBR8191R British Soldier

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British Soldier RB&I Race Report 2

Latest news: With the engine running and lines about to be cast off, we just heard that the race has been postponed to 0900 on Monday 11 Aug. The following was issued from the race office:

"The Race Committee have taken the decision to postpone the start of the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race 2014 by 21 hours. The new start time will be 0900 on the 11th August 2014. The Race Committee took this decision after receiving advice that the low pressure system known as Bertha is moving more slowly than previously predicted, with the result that the forecast winds for the start and the immediate period afterwards includes sustained winds of 40 knots with gusts in excess of 50 knots in the English Channel. The advice is that this delay will allow time for the severe winds to abate as the low pressure system moves North East. "

Therefore, the British Soldier crew are shortly relocating to the Anchor for a pub lunch! Although we will be heading out for a last practice sail this afternoon, to at least take the opportunity to put the storm sails up again. Whilst slightly frustrated at a delay, as we are all keen to get going, on the other hand there is a due sense that the postponement is probably sensible given the slightly stronger forecast.

Phil Caswell


British Soldier

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Crew member on GER5555 Bank von Bremen

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Many greetings from the Crew of Bank von Bremen

Yesterday evening we rounded Muckle Flugga and are happy to be on our way

back now. The beating in wet and windy conditions became tiring. In the

moment we are going upwind again but this time sun is shining. We have faced

already a number of technical problems. Just after the start we lost our

Gennaker pole and had to improvise. Due to deep broaching we had to send one

crewmember up to the top of the mast in heavy weather conditions.

Succesfullly we started running around south-east England. A two days

passage through the North-Sea brought us to the Lat. of 60-ies. We are

still in the game but have sometimes the feeling of being in a different

race than our competitors because of different weather conditions.


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