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Day 230

12 minutes and 0.7%

Not 12 minutes of time, but of arc, that is to say 12 miles. This is the north-south separation of the trio who are now sailing as if parading towards Cape Finisterre, separated by less than 200 miles between Simon (Chichester) who is leading the troop into Biscay, and Abhilash. A 200-mile gap after 29,500 miles is a mere 0.7%.

The gap between Kirsten and her runner-up is stable as they are having the same weather within 100 miles from each other on the same latitude. Abhilash repaired another rip in his main sail, and there are two traps to avoid before Biscay: first is the windless bubble which will cross north of both of them during the day, and tomorrow the Cape Finisterre TSS (Traffic Separation Scheme) which channels the intense maritime traffic in the Eastern Atlantic. It’s a bit like running across a four-lane road in shorts and sandals!

Behind, Captain Gugg is well downwind but still facing the residual NW sea which will last for a few days. It’s slamming, it’s moving, it’s noisy and uncomfortable. The Austrian who is now 1,600 miles behind the lead, probably can’t even carry the spinnaker. Jeremy is switching wind regime from easterly to north westerly in nasty seas. He and Gugg went from 4 knots this morning to 5.5 at 1200Z so things are looking up, and it will only have taken Jeremy two days to get out of the Doldrums!


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