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Cloudy

The latest exclusive report for SA from skipper Bouwe Bekking onboard
Telefonica Blue.

Just a short update from Telefónica Azul and their anarchists
onboard
. The passage through the doldrums has been very costly
for us. We always had the game plan to cross somewhere between 28 and
30 degrees West, but the night we wanted to gybe over for making more
Westing we parked up completely under a massive cloud. Our colleagues
on the Telefónica Black missed the cloud, and 2 skeds later where
60 miles West of us and from there on it was struggle. The good part
was that we sailed right up to the Nordic boat, passed them very easily
and stretched away, they must have been scratching their heads. Up to
that moment they had sailed very well. Then the Ruskies, I think they
were the surprise of the first week, having good pace downwind, but
their navigator Wouter (the router) has been showing them all the sides
of the ocean. He is coming from the Jean Yves Bernot school and not
afraid to split away from the fleet. But after the doldrums crossing,
they had a hard time, missing over 1,000 kg in their bulb hasn’t
helped them in the power reaching conditions.

At least another 8-9 days to go, it looks like pretty fast once we
start to make our Easting. Right now we follow a course close to Brazilian
coast, to avoid the ridge of high pressure. Once cleared we should be
able to hook onto a low pressure system and off we go, and will make
some big mileage. It will be important to keep the boat in one piece,
as the stopover is going to be very short in Capetown. So far not many
jobs, just some instrument displays have given up on us. In the last
race no issues at all, so we haven’t brought any spares with us,
bummer. But the mast displays still work ok, lets hope it stays that
way. Sailing without instruments is fun, but not in a pitch black night
with big waves and it looks that will bring us next week.

Cheers,

Bouwe