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nightmarish

Saturday, 5th May 2012 – 19.55 GMT
Leg 6 Brazil to Miami

The latest from onboard Telefónica from watch captain Neal McDonald

In sharp contrast to the previous leg this one has so far been warm, light winds and flat water. We all flew out of Brazil in a hurry but by the morning after we were in light conditions. Since then it feels like we have been drifting around in nice, but hardly exciting sailing conditions. The racing has been close, we have been in sight of another boat for a significant portion of the race, so that part of it has been fun.

But the otherwise trust worthy trade winds have let us all down. They have been little wind and the leg is looking like it will go on for several days longer than predicted. At least when it is warm like this food rationing for a few days will not be that painful if it comes to that.

On “Telefónica” spirits every one is happy enough, our leg has not gone too badly, as I write this we have about 1,000 miles to go and are fighting hard for second place with “Camper with Emirates Team New Zealand” -trading miles between each other from one position report to another, stressful but great racing. In some conditions we have a small edge – in others they do. We’ll just have to wait and see how it all pans out in the end.

Just 20 or so miles in front of both of us is “Puma”. They have sailed a faultless leg so far and look like they mean to defend their lead if any one gets much closer. Despite all that the whole leg could still turn inside out. It looks like between now and the finish we have more than one parking lot and every day we are threatened by a series of clouds that could easily drop places.

So despite the placid warm conditions it is far from “plain sailing”. We are in a win range that means we are constantly changing sails and moving the stack backwards and forwards to suit the conditions.

On top of that the weather has been far from predictable making the leg a tactical nightmare. All in all I’ll be keen to get this one over with and catch up with my family in Miami.

Neal MacDonald
Telefónica Watch Captain