Puma Leg One Day 17 – Ken Read’s Blog
are a bit lonely out here as for just about the first time this race
we can’t see another boat. E4 gybed and crossed our bow by about 20
boat lengths earlier this afternoon ending an incredible run of being
neck and neck. They are heading south presumably looking for more wind.
We kind of like where we are right now and decided to end our little
boat on boat battle at least for now. It is not easy predicting the
weather situation right now, except for the fact that someone is going
to turn the fans on pretty good for a few days.
Life on board is simple. Go about chores, on watch, in bed, eat, and
sleep. Do it all over again. A regime spoiled only by the fact that
gremlins crawl into the complex boat systems from time to time and take
the mechanically inclined completely off their schedule. Which happened
this morning but again Casey Smith helped de-bug and solve the issues,
this time with the able assistance from Chris Nicholson.
For such simple looking craft, with zero interior amenities, its amazing
how complicated these machines are. Especially with modern age communication
and our new and elaborate media station. The computer-driven hydraulic
keel system is just another example of something that can get full of
gremlins and you wouldn’t know it until many times it is too late. That
is why guys like Casey and Michi Mueller and Nico (Chris Nicholson)
are so crucial.
Essentially the modern day racer is also part electrician and mechanic
and all around "McGyver". We’ve had a few cases during this
trip, and I can’t tell you how impressive it is to watch these guys
solve some issues that simply blow right over my head. Thank goodness
they were all around for the entire build of the boat. In essence they
also helped design the systems, which is one of the reasons why they
are so comfortable with an issue that seems potentially so daunting
to the non-mechanically inclined. It is always hopeful that the gremlins
don’t find the boat, but also somewhat unrealistic. Hopefully we can
keep them away for the next few days though, or at least until someone
turns the fans down a bit.
Ken Read – skipper