Crew member on GBR5936R GameOn
A quick update since Ollie's voice message yesterday.
Good progress last night as we passsed Black Rock off the North West of Ireland.
We had a host of boats around us - Junique, Azawaky, Scarlet Oyster, and then EH101 joined the party. Had a match race with Junique for a few hours, literally 100 yards from each other. We managed to find the majic surfing sauce in the pitch black and overtook them.
Not long after that around midnight, we got hit but 35 knot squall. My shout in the darkness above the howling wind and flapping sails was answered by the sleeping Ollie and we (he !) got the reef in the main whilst I fought control at the control and command centre behind :)
Control restored, Ollie returned to his dreams and I spent an awesome few hours surfing under jib and reefed main at 12+knots before it was his turn for helming fun. Only sailors would probably get these moments as when you say it out loud it does sound somewhat insane. The boat is screaming through the pitch black of night in big breaking waves, in the middle of know where, only instruments to guide the helm, being battered by the spray and sea surf as it launches over the boat and tries to detach you at every opportunity whilst you mate sleeps in the washing machine below....thats living !!
Just to add to this intoxicating mix the stars broke through and we were treated to a fantastic shooting star, watching it break up into two. 10 minutes later there was something new on the deck - a fish had been dumped by the spray onto the boat. Now we had a battle to save the fish. He was flapping on the deck halfway down the boat, well out of reach. I am tethered on and helming...my life saving skills for the fish didnt extend to going up the pointy end. Plan B, hit the surf hard and get more water on deck to wash it down to me so I could flip hip back in. A few failed attempts, his energetic flipping was waning and the battle for Freddy was looking lost. But then then magic wave delivered, Freddy was washed in to my lap and I relaunched him sea side. Hooray the fish was saved I hear you all cheering...or have I spent too long at sea ?
So its now 2PM Thursday and we are heading to St Kilda (120 miles to go). Main is reefed again and Ollie just danced around the foredeck changing our J2 to J3. Currently have 28 knots and big seas but the boat is calm and flat and the sun is out. Heads down and we keep charging on. Be good to get tomorrow over and done with and get through the worst of the bad weather.
Cheers for now,
Ian and Ollie