Sunday, 8 September 2013

Preparing for our first ocean crossing

Tomorrow we set off for Rio and there is some apprehension around the Clipper boats as for most of us an ocean crossing is a step into the unknown involving around 24 days at sea.  The forecast is fairly rough to begin with as we cross the Bay of Biscay into forecast south westerly winds, exactly the direction we are trying to sail. So there is lots of dosing up on seasickness pills etc prior to race start at 12.30pm UK time tomorrow.

We had a race briefing today when we were advised of the departure procedure including saying farewell to the mayor of Brest, chat about the route, the weather and arrival in Rio de Janeiro about 24 days later. The reality of the challenge ahead is sinking in but we need to get going and once across the Bay of Biscay better downwind conditions are forecast blowing us south towards the Equator, where strange rituals are observed for those who haven't sail across it before, the Doldrums (where the race will be won or lost apparently) and onwards to Brazil.

You can follow progress of Jamaica and all the boats on the Clipper race viewer, and if we disappear it is only because we have gone into "stealth mode" for 24 hours so that the other boats can't see our tactics.

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