We are in day 2 of the 2014 Newport-Bermuda race and while there has been some really nice sailing at times, we are currently “parked up” as the saying goes, waiting for the “re-start”. We are about 200 miles out from Newport and only about 38 miles from our target entrance to the Gulf Stream, the river of hot, fast water within the ocean that crosses at nearly a right angle to the rhumb line course from Newport to Bermuda. We were expecting to be there tonight but our journey has been delayed by the complete absence of wind , which is a necessary component to this mode of transportation. My co-skipper Rob Windsor and I have been duking it out with our fellow Class 40 Pleiad Racing and I think we have exchanged the lead four times and remain within spitting distance of them at the moment. So our Class 40 battle within the double-handed class rages on, however we read that Mike Dreese on his new “Toothface 2” retired from the race (don’t know what happened but the report said everyone was OK), so that just leaves three of us to battle for the Bermuda Race Class 40 title.
We can see at least 20 other boats with sails slapping and the boats drifting on the glassy calm water. We had a nice interlude of fast sailing earlier today and were really looking forward to the warm water and interesting marine life in the Stream, but at this point we are simply part of a lovely sunset still life painting. It is tempting to take the sails down and take a nap, but the paranoid, neurotic instincts keep one glued to the tiller, trimming flapping sails and searching in vain for that next wind line.
Hopefully my next report will be a bit more exciting. Title inspiration thanks to Elvis Costello.