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Member of Support Team of Relentless on Jellyfish

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2014 Blogs

Written by Member of Support Team of Relentless on Jellyfish Saturday, 16 August 2014 23:33

The weather update this evening shows the weather for the next 36 hours

will be much as expected earlier today. There is a low 988mb currently

centered west of Shetland 60 55.00N 003 45.00W. This is expected to

track east to be centered over Stavanger by 2200 on Sunday.

Metoffice buoys K5 are currently showing 18 knots at 280 and K7 is

currently showing 30 knots at 320. This shows the expected situation

emerging. the wind is lighter near the cyclonic centre of the low and

stronger on the edge of the low. The wind at K7 has veered NW as well as

expected.

You can check the current wind strengths and wave heights at Metoffice

buoys via this wind chart

http://weather.ianmillard.com/windycator/

As the low goes east the isobars get a further compressed to the west of

the low and this will produce northerly winds with a base level of 30-35

knots and gusts of 40-45 knots. The wave heights are currently showing as

4.0m on K5 and 5.3m on K7 and this is expected to build to 6.2m wave height

by 1400 on Sunday.

The metoffice is reporting winds Force 6 to 8 with a severe gale 9 at

times. This forecast is consistent with these wind strengths. They also

report sea state will go from rough to very rough (4m-6m) and occasionally

sea state high (6m-9m). The wave models suggest that the sea state may

touch the definition fo high (6m-9m) but it will be at the lower end around

6m.

The wind has started veering round from SW to NW. It is expected to be

firmly in the NW by 0400 Monday and then continue veering to be N by 1000.

the strongest winds seem to be expected between 1000 and 1800 on Sunday.

These winds will be from the N and will be behind the boats still racing.

From Midnight Sunday the wind should start to drop quite rapidly and will

be under 25 knots by 0600 Monday morning and will continue to decline

through the day to 15 knots in the afternoon. From 0200 on Monday expect

the wind to start backing to NW as well as declining in strength.

Dessert, Lula Belle, Saga, British Soldier, Relentless, Rare and Palpatine

are sailing into the teeth of this and will be in for a rough night. But

as the wind goes behind them it will help a bit.

Bank von Bremmen are sailing out of this and should escape the worst.

Swish and Haspa are past the worst of this now and on their way to Ireland.

My next chance to update will be Sunday late evening by which time the

storm will be going away.

Chris Radford

www.chrisradfordnav.wordpress.com

   

NEWSFLASH: World Record for Artemis - Team Endeavour

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2014 Press Releases

Written by RORC Saturday, 16 August 2014 20:27

Artemis - Team Endeavour, skippered by Brian Thompson, crossed the finish line of the 2014 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race off the Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes at 23.00.54 BST on Saturday 16th August 2014 with an elapsed time of 5 days, 14 hours, 00 minutes and 54 seconds.

This breaks the previous World Record, for Monohulls 60 feet and less, set by Safran, in 2011, by 19 hours, 48 minutes and 16 seconds. Artemis - Team Endeavour's record is subject to ratification by the World Speed Sailing Record Council.


This is the fourth World Record broken during the 2014 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club.

   

Tough at the Top

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2014 Press Releases

Written by Nick Elliot Saturday, 16 August 2014 17:43

Artemis-Team Endeavour and Monster Project start their epic battle around britain and Ireland - photo RORC/Rick TomlinsonDay Six: PM Update

At 1400 BST, the forecast strong westerly winds had arrived at the north of the course for the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race, providing challenging conditions for the yachts in the region. Three competitors have retired in the last 24 hours and Jankees Lampe's Open 40, La Promesse has suspended racing and is heading for Stornoway to affect mainsail repairs, before restarting the race.

Tonight or early tomorrow, the leading yachts racing under IRC in the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race are expected to cross the finish line when another world record is set to be broken and line honours for the IRC fleet will be decided.

IRC Overall

Jens Kellinghusen's German Ker 51, Varuna leads the IRC fleet by an estimated nine hours on corrected time. At 1400 BST, Varuna was just off the Scilly Isles, and gybed onto port for the 240 mile downwind leg to the finish. Ahead of Varuna on the water, but behind after time correction was Brian Thompson's IMOCA 60, Artemis-Team Endeavour and Andrew Budgen and Fred Schwyn's, Volvo 70, Monster Project. The two canting keel yachts have been battling for IRC line honours boat for boat.

Read more: Tough at the Top

   

Crew on GBR 2722 Rleentless on Jellyfish

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2014 Blogs

Written by RORC Saturday, 16 August 2014 16:11

The crew are all fine. The boat is holding up very well and proving very robust.

The boat was slamming uncomfortably into the waves. So we changed course to go SE onto a reach and then downwind NE and then NW. This has given us time to consider our options. We have done a thorough review of ourselves, the boat, the options and the weather. We have established already in the race that the boat is fine going downwind in 45 knots with a headsail. It runs in a very stable manner and feels safe. We know the wind will turn to the North this evening. So as the wind veers to the North, we are planning to go down with the wind. This way we will stay in 30 knots until this evening and then by the time the bigger wind arrives we will be running downwind which we can do safely.

At present Relentless is carrying on racing. We are monitoring the weather and we are holding the option to run to Orkney or Stornaway if it gets worse.

   

Crew member on GER5555 Bank von Bremen

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2014 Blogs

Written by Crew member on GER5555 Bank von Bremen Saturday, 16 August 2014 14:57

Bank von Bremen is approaching St. Kilda.

Today we received the safety warning with gale force 10 and got right away

Bft. 9.

We sail under storm jib and hope the wind will slow down, but latest

Gribfiles say lower winds monday morning.

Everything is wet, now it is no more race condition but get crew and boat

through.

   

Crew member on GBR8191R British Soldier

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2014 Blogs

Written by Crew member on GBR8191R British Soldier Saturday, 16 August 2014 09:49

British Soldier RB&I Race Report 6

As at 0336 Sat 16 Aug

We are at the top! after a lot of beating and some flukey winds we arrived at Muckle Flugga around 1630! The equivalent of 1 Fastnet down with 2 to go. Morale has been lifted with the opportunity to use our phones and check in with loved ones (apart from the driver - the luckless skipper). Also in light airs there has been a chance for a wash and a change of clothes. Most of the tidying below has been sorted although Phil's 'Eagle's Nest' (skipper's quarterberth) seems to have gone unattended. The crew also enjoyed their second bottle of champagne, and clocked the 10,000th mile on British Soldier, which was quite a moment for Phil and Will.

Since then the wind has gone west and up to 25 knots. We are sailing close to the wind under J4 and 2 reefs and are fairly hard pressed in some bumpy seas . Down below has returned to swamp - a large item is floating at my feet under the chart table, not sure what. Spray is flung from bow to stern and even somehow flicks 180 degrees down the hatch - irksome to say the least! The wind looks set to blow over the next few days so we are bracing ourselves for more of these delights!

For more information on the race go to http://roundbritainandireland.rorc.org/home.html

Remember to follow the yachts go to http://roundbritainandireland.rorc.org/2014-fleet-tracking.html

   

Crew member on NED7576 La Promesse

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2014 Blogs

Written by Crew member on NED7576 La Promesse Saturday, 16 August 2014 09:15

We just sent this message to race committee.

Race Committee,

We just stopped racing to head for Stornoway to do mainsail repairs. Area is too large to handle in these conditions on board. We postponed at 59.03.2N 7.09.841W.

Skipper and crew all fine.

JanKees & Bart

   

The Records Continue to Tumble

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2014 Press Releases

Written by Nick Elliot Saturday, 16 August 2014 07:47

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing's Volvo Ocean 65, Azzam skippered by Ian Walker finish the 2014 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race - photo RORC/CNN MainsailDay Six: AM Update

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing's Volvo Ocean 65, Azzam, skippered by Ian Walker, crossed the finish line of the 2014 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race off the Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes at 22.20.28 BST on Friday 15th August 2014 with an elapsed time of 4 days, 13 hours, 10 minutes, 28 seconds, smashing the race record by over 30 hours and setting a new world record (subject to WSSRC ratification.)

After four days of relentless, high speed racing pushing the crews and the boats to their limit, the strong downwind conditions abated just before dawn, as Azzam, the runaway Volvo Ocean 65 class leader approached The Lizard. The wind began to fade and with close to just a zephyr of wind on the south side of the Isle of Wight, Azzam were confronted by a tactical decision - to go inshore at St.Catherine's Point or offshore looking for breeze. It is a tactical decision that many locals will know having competed in the Round the Island Race.

Read more: The Records Continue to Tumble

   

Crew member on NED7576 La Promesse

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2014 Blogs

Written by Crew member on NED7576 La Promesse Saturday, 16 August 2014 06:44

One stitch in the main is departing seriously.

Between 2nd and 3rd reef.

We've just put the 3rd reef in and wait for a opportunity to do repairs.

This main has done two AZAB's and one OSTAR, half a RBI and some daysailing. Altogether around 16000 nautical miles. Cuben Fiber which is quite strong and keeps its shape. Final diagnose after the race.

Under 3rd reef and staysail doing 7 knots.

Bit dissapointed but already with a plan for the repairs.

Woeaaaaahhhhh!

JK & B

   

Crew on IRL3607 Lula Belle

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Written by RORC Saturday, 16 August 2014 06:30

Day 4

The first sign of things changing were the waves were now against us then the wind turned. The hard beat started to Shetland. Over 100 miles up wind. Wind in 20's again today. Shackle on jib blew so we had to stop to fix that. While we were stopped we fixed nav lights. Bulb blew in lights but broke inside so we had to fit spare set to bow. Brian did same hanging from the pulpit. Despite my best efforts he did get dunked a couple of times so he can confirm the gauge saying water temperature 32c is also incorrect.

Life on board is still uncomfortable. The sailing is great it's all the other stuff that's a nuisance. Eating sleeping etc. All our injuries have come from falls down below as boat is rocked.

As day closes we see we have actually sailed 155 miles but only covered 110 of race course. The tide seems to be forever against us. And it's not so much the 2 knts you loose against it it's the 20 degrees you lose of pointing that kills you. The north sea tides are erratic and hard to work with.

Spirits are good anyway as we hope to see.Shetland s tomorrow.

Liam

   

Skipper on GBR 1702 Scarlet Logic

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2014 Blogs

Written by RORC Saturday, 16 August 2014 06:28

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

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Written by RORC Saturday, 16 August 2014 06:26

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.

Liam

   

Crew Member on GBR 5236 Rare

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Written by RORC Saturday, 16 August 2014 06:22

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.

   

NEWSFLASH: World Record for SCA

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2014 Press Releases

Written by RORC Saturday, 16 August 2014 05:35

Volvo Ocean 65 SCA, skippered by Sam Davies, crossed the finish line of the 2014 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race off the Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes at 06.10.39 BST on Saturday 16th August 2014 with an elapsed time of 4 days, 21 hours, 00 minutes and 39 seconds.

This breaks the previous World Record for Women's Monohull set by Aviva, an Open 60, in 2009, by 1 day, 14 hours, 30 minutes and 14 seconds. SCA's record is subject to ratification by the World Speed Sailing Record Council. Of the women onboard SCA in 2014, both Dee Caffari and Sam Davies were also onboard Aviva when the World Record was set in 2009.

This is the third World Record broken during the 2014 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club.
   

Crew member on NED7576 La Promesse

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Written by Crew member on NED7576 La Promesse Saturday, 16 August 2014 04:28

Time out.

Headsail down and continue under double reefed main.

Slamming of the boat too violent. Apparent wind on deck between 36 and 45 kts in a rough sea.

Still doing 6 knots over ground (!) in a WNW direction to pick up westerly and NW winds sooner. Another day without progress is annoying for raceresults :-(

These conditions are a serious test for sailor and gear.

Good watertight and waterproof foulgear is a must as is a pair of real waterproof boots with good grip. We have seen some torrential rain the last couple of hours.Comfortable safety belt that hooks in and out easily.

Bart and I discussed the question 'why are we doing this voluntarily?' a couple of times. And the answer is that we love it. We're always happy out here at sea, in our element. Whatever conditions. It is that passion from where the motivation comes to conti

nue and everytime again leave harbour and chase the horizon.

We keep the discipline to make fresh tea every watch and make sure we eat and drink a little. And get enough rest.

All well on board. Daylight just arrived. Now we have a better view of mother nature in a grimmy mood. Someone really pissed off Neptune!

Anxious to know how we are doing.

from 59.15N 6.46W with love,

JanKees & Bart

   

NEWSFLASH: World Record for Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing

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2014 Press Releases

Written by RORC Friday, 15 August 2014 16:42

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing's Volvo Ocean 65, Azzam, skippered by Ian Walker, crossed the finish line of the 2014 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race off the Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes at 22.20.28 BST on Friday 15th August 2014 with an elapsed time of 4 days, 13 hours, 10 minutes, 28 seconds.

This breaks the previous World Record and Race Record for a monohull set by Volvo 70 Groupama, in 2010, by 1 day, 08 hours, 16 minutes and 27 seconds. Azzam's record is subject to ratification by the World Speed Sailing Record Council.

This is the second World Record broken during the 2014 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club.

   

Crew member on GER5555 Bank von Bremen

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Written by Crew member on GER5555 Bank von Bremen Friday, 15 August 2014 14:23

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.

   

Volvo Ocean 65s expected to finish this evening

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2014 Press Releases

Written by RORC Friday, 15 August 2014 13:58

The Volvo Ocean 65 fleet are expected to finish the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race this evening. Will Azzam, skippered by Britain's Ian Walker, hold off Team Campos and set a new course record? Who will win the battle for third place? Dongfeng, Alvimedica or SCA? Will SCA set a new women's record for the course?

   

Crew member on NED7576 La Promesse

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Written by Crew member on NED7576 La Promesse Friday, 15 August 2014 12:12

Red = port

Green = starboard

360deg White = anchor

Dark Yellow = sign of possible dehydration or too little water intake

start drinking immediately!

(water)

All fine, good progress along rhumbline, Bank of Bremen 10nm WSW of us.

JanKees & Bart

o/b La Promesse

   

Crew member on SWE1929 SCA

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Written by Crew member on SWE1929 SCA Friday, 15 August 2014 11:38

New pictures on photo deck:

http://teamsca.photodeck.com/-/galleries/teamsca_public/round-britain-and-

ireland-race

   

Twist of Fate

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2014 Press Releases

Written by RORC Friday, 15 August 2014 10:46

Chinese team on VO 65, Dongfeng, in the harsh race conditions. Credit:Riou/Dongfeng Race Team Day Five: AM Update

The first three days of the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race produced fast downwind conditions for the entire fleet. However, yesterday afternoon a northwesterly air flow headed the fleet yet to round Out Stack, and the changeable weather is due to continue today. Only a few yachts will benefit, for many it will be a disadvantage. After four days, the remaining competitors will be fully in tune to the routine of life at sea.

Yesterday, at approximately 1400 BST, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing's Volvo Ocean 65 Azzam, skippered by Ian Walker, rounded the Fastnet Rock, leading the fleet and over 40 miles ahead of Team Campos, skippered by Iker Martinez. Almost immediately Azzam gybed offshore onto starboard and didn't gybe back for 90 miles. Team Campos followed Azzam offshore, but gybed for the Scilly Isles, 50 miles earlier than Azzam, which turned into a ten mile gain for the Spanish team. Bear in mind that while they can receive regular weather updates and position reports, the teams cannot see the RORC race player and cannot see each other's immediate moves until the next update. At 0800 BST, Azzam was 30 miles ahead of Team Campos with 130 miles to go and is expected to finish the race today sometime before dusk.

"We took the gybe offshore as a precaution," commented Ian walker by satellite phone to the RORC Media Team. "We wanted to stay in the best pressure and get a good angle to the Scilly Isles but avoid the TSS (Traffic Separation Scheme). Compared to the last four days, we are racing in comfortable conditions with the off watch able to get some sleep. However, we expect our lead to be whittled away over the next few hours as the breeze develops from behind. In the Volvo Ocean Race many legs end with this scenario. As we approach land the wind can change for the leader, allowing the boats behind to catch up. We have a big lead but if we park up, even for a couple of hours, it will completely vanish."

The battle for third in the Volvo Ocean 65 Class is currently being led by Team Dongfeng, skippered by Frenchman Charles Caudrelier. The Chinese entry for the forthcoming Volvo Ocean Race was 16 miles ahead of SCA, skippered by Sam Davies, and Alvimedica, skippered by Charlie Enright.

Read more: Twist of Fate

   

Crew member on SWE1929 SCA

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2014 Blogs

Written by Crew member on SWE1929 SCA Friday, 15 August 2014 10:27

Day and Night

It is 0245 Friday morning in the waters of the Fastnet (south of the Irish

Sea). Libby and Sam are sitting on the floor staring at the navigation

computer, analyzing, waiting to make the call to gybe back across

Alvimedica. The off-watch girls are sleeping in their gear and have thirty

minutes to rest until we gybe back. The girls on deck are in full

concentration mode; they say nothing except for "trim on," "hold," and

"nice numbers. And it has been like this all day and all night as we've

played a game of snakes and ladders with Team Alvimedica.

A few days ago, after an epic start by Team SCA off of Cowes, we sailed at

the back of the Volvo Ocean 65 pack as we raced more of an easterly route

to avoid wind farms. For a few days we watched the rich get richer with

various pressure systems affecting the area for the boats ahead of us.

Today, we closed our 52nm mile gap on Dongfeng, coming within 4nm of the

team yesterday morning and we closed and sealed our 40nm gap on the young

guns on board Team Alvimedica.

Playing catch up has certainly not been easy in the least. As we sailed

down the west coast of Ireland, we've relied on tactics and timing to make

our massive gains and crawl back. Now, as we reach the southern tip of

Ireland we will be on longer gybes until the Scilly Islands.

"Now, it will be about sailing fast and not making mistakes," Libby said

after finishing up a well thought out "surprise" gybe in front of

Alvimedica. (I say surprise because, as a crew, we initially thought our

last gybe was to our lay line and course.) But, as Libby explained, "on

the last gybe we continued to get lifted* as the wind shifted, we saw an

opportunity so we decided to capitalize on it." The gybe was so last

minute that the internal weight was left to shift to windward until after

the gybe and some of the girls were still putting their boots on when they

began to furl the staysail.

This is just one example of what the last twenty four hours has been like;

nearly every waking and sleeping (when you can get some) moment has been

about passing Alvimedica and leaving them well in our trail. A true game

of cat and mouse, snakes and ladders, and a drag race!

As per normal on board Team SCA, timing is everything and only tomorrow

will tell if all our focus, determination, and hard work will pay off!

*A lift is a shift which allows your boat to head up toward the windward

mark more. It "lifts" your course higher.

   

Crew member on SWE1929 SCA

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Written by Crew member on SWE1929 SCA Friday, 15 August 2014 10:27

Game on.

A while back someone came up with the phrase: there is no I in team. Well,

this phrase still stands true today and could not be truer than here on

board Team SCA. Together, we live with little sleep, together we bail out

the boat, together we get doused by waves, together we get up and attempt

to get dressed quickly, together we eat for energy, together we sail fast

and hard. Together, we gain mile after mile on Alvimedica and Dongfeng.

If, for one minute, we worked independently this race would be in vain. We

need our watch partner and our other crew mates to keep us focused and to

get us through the often incredibly long watches and short off watches.

When the wind dies and it becomes too easy to lose focus, or when we have

to grind for 2.5hours straight, we need our team members to keep pushing

us. Of course we each bring different skills to the table, but our skill

sets could not flourish if we did not work as a team. This could not have

been more true than today.

From here on out, in the Seven Star Round Britain and Ireland Race our

timing is crucial. We are currently sailing in the waters of Rockall and

Shannon, according to the BBCs Shipping Forecast.

"It becomes quite tactical as we gybe down the west coast of Ireland.

There will be about one hour between each gybe," Libby explained. Onboard

SCA we can make massive gains and capitalize on other teams losses during

this tricky time.

Over the course of the night we have become neck and neck with Alvimedica,

they are to the east of us off our starboard side, now we are only 3nm

ahead and Dongfeng is about 3nm away down the track ahead of us.

"Alvimedica went offshore so we gained miles on them there," Sam said.

"Currently, we are heading towards the most north west tip of Ireland,

where we will begin a gybe off down the coast."

With three teams incredibly close at the moment, timing and teamwork will

be everything today. There is a buzz in the air, you can see the girls

smiling, and hear the occasional laugh so there is no doubt the girls are

loving their job, the race, and most importantly their team.

Oh, and we are about 660nm away from the finish line back in the Solent

thats just one lap around the Canary Islands!!

   

Crew member on SWE1929 SCA

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Written by Crew member on SWE1929 SCA Friday, 15 August 2014 10:26

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.

   

Crew member on SWE1929 SCA

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Written by Crew member on SWE1929 SCA Friday, 15 August 2014 10:25

It's nearly 0600 and except for a few naps during the night, Team SCA has

been up for 24hrs. "It's tiring," Annie said. "And the boys are sailing

fast. But, by no means, are we even thinking about giving up.

"At the moment, it's pretty much a drag race for all of us but definitely

for us," Libby said. Fortunately, Libby pointed out there is also a high

pressure moving in about 200 miles away, is near the Shetland Islands,

where we might make some gains.

It is definitely a drag race, except instead of car fumes and peel out

smoke, it is wind and waves, lots of waves. The waves are pretty unreal:

walls of white water, nearly reaching the first spreader that come flying

over the deck. Some crash over the cockpit filling it like a bathtub.

Others seemingly leap over the boat altogether and come fully down on the

four girls on deck. One wave completely knocked Annie off her feet as she

trimmed the main; only after the grinders were trimming the sail back to

life did Annie climb back to her feet again. Even virtually under water,

the girls are working incredibly, hard to make up for lost miles.

To date, this is the most sustained wind and seas we have seen over a 24

hour period ever (our top wind speed to date is 47kts during a squall).

This is great for learning more about the boat and ourselves in these

conditions. It has a been a fast and wet first 24hours, and as we reach

the top of the course, with the low pressure moving out and the high

pressure moving in Libby is expecting a beautiful sunset as we race around

the top of Great Britain

   

Crew member on SWE1929 SCA

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2014 Blogs

Written by Crew member on SWE1929 SCA Friday, 15 August 2014 10:21

Day 1: Hold onto your hats!

Happy Monday and welcome back to the office! Today, you might be working

on the latest report or answering phone calls, or you might even be

enjoying a nice caramel macchiato at your desk in your dry office. For us,

our Monday is a little different and way more wet! Currently, Team SCA,

along with four other Volvo 65s: Team Alvimedica, Team Campos, Abu Dhabi

Ocean Racing, and Team Dongfeng are sending it east along the southern

English coast in the Seven Star RORC Round Britain and Ireland Race. This

is the first time SCA will be racing most of the boats in an offshore

situation. The 1,850nm race was supposed to start yesterday, however it

was postponed 21 hours because of Hurricane Bertha. Its Round Britain and

Ireland take two, we still have the same weather system but its less

violent. We are happy we are racing today and not just in survival mode,

Sam said.

Big Bertha may have moved on but she has left plenty of wind behind her

for us to race in. Team SCA had an incredible start, pulling ahead of the

fleet and leading the pack down the Solent, past the Forts. Buzzing off

the fantastic start, the girls got down to business to sail SCA hard and

fast, proving quickly that time and practice does pay off. It has been all

about timing for us, but we are staying ahead of the others with sail

choice, taking any moment to capitalize on the wind and tide. Currently,

we have one reef in the mainsail and mountains of white water crashing

over the bow, we are all smiles as our boat is averaging low twenties.

We hope your Monday is just as good as ours!

   

Video highlights by Musandam-Oman Sail

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2014 Race Updates

Written by Stefan Kunstmann Friday, 15 August 2014 09:03

   

Crew member on NED7576 La Promesse

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2014 Blogs

Written by Crew member on NED7576 La Promesse Friday, 15 August 2014 00:57

Been there, seen it, done it!

Twice!

With who?

With Bart!

In 2006 clockwise, daylight, to win RWYC Shetlands RBI in class en 2nd overall behind Michel Kleinjans.

And now anti clockwise, pitch dark (that rock must be somewhere there).

Exciting! An island in darkness is scary. It feels so close you can touch it. Although the chart says you're 8 miles offshore.

Big holes and high mountains sea.

Chicken curry and 'borrelnootjes' for dinner.

Socks do smell.

   

Crew member on GBR8191R British Soldier

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2014 Blogs

Written by Crew member on GBR8191R British Soldier Thursday, 14 August 2014 20:26

British Soldier RB&I Race Report 5

as at 2359 wed 13 aug

The highlight of the day had to be the sumptious cheese board for lunch,

including chutneys and tesco's finest biscuits. The smell from the fridge

was overpowering even the smell of Will's feet so the cheese had to be

eaten urgently! Life on a very bumpy port tack at 20 degrees heel heading

into a 20-30 knot wind has taken its toll on living down below. Sitting at

the chart table involves paddling in the puddle at your feet. Everything

is wet including sleeping bags - not great for morale! Every 2 hours sees

an olympic gymnastic performance from someone exiting their bunk and

putting on waterproofs. Oh and there's still lots of tweaking of sails and

reefing in and out being done too! On the plus side Matt Barnes hasn't

been sick for 12 hours now... they don't make Paras like they used to .

In other news the crew have now nicknamed Phil 'Sharpe' where most of his

crew marches on paper while the chosen few march on to Scotland!

Phil

Skipper

British Soldier

For more information on the race go to

http://roundbritainandireland.rorc.org/home.html

Remember to follow the yachts go to

http://roundbritainandireland.rorc.org/2014-fleet-tracking.html

   

Member of Support Team of Relentless on Jellyfish

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2014 Blogs

Written by Member of Support Team of Relentless on Jellyfish Thursday, 14 August 2014 17:21

The wind in the North Sea on the race track did not follow the forecast and

has been reluctant to veer from NW to N as predicted. As a result we have

seen a number of boats pushing a long way to the right of the course as

they try to find the best route with the shortest distance to Shetland

(Scarlet Oyster, Rare and Relentless have all been pushing a long way N.

As I look at the tracker all three of the boats have tacked in the past 3

hours and all are following a track that is WNW and I am sure each will be

hoping for the promised wind veer so they get a lift on Starboard that

carries them into the windward mark at Muckle Flugga.

East of Shetland we expect the wind will veer to 020 until Midnight.

But then the swing will reverse and the wind will start to back round back

to 350 until 1000 on Friday. But after Midday on Friday we expect the wind

to start backing further round ending up at 240 sometime after 2200 on

Friday as a new low pressure system pushes down from Iceland.

By 2200 on Friday the new low will be centred 63 28.00N and 018 43.00W.

By 1300 on Saturday we expect this new low will have moved SE and be

centred on the Faroe Islands. This will be the dominant influence on the

race for Classes 1-3 producing a powerful SW flow around 20-25 knots.

See the charts on this page

All crews will be reviewing which is the making tack and trying to find the

best way up this windward leg.

After they round the top, the boats may have been hoping for another spell

of downwind, but as a result of the low pressure system that is approaching

from Iceland they will have to wait a bit for that. This low will push the

wind into a Southwesterly direction from Friday evening to Saturday

evening. After that as the low moves further E we expect the wind to start

veering again and the boats will be reaching past the Western Isles of

Scotland before a further veer and a return to downwind sailing.

Chris Radford

www.chrisradfordnav.wordpress.com

   

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