Horsington’s Mark Tucker is taking part in the Clipper Round the World Race, now in its 9th day.
The fleet is heading south in mid Atlantic, west of the Straits of Gibraltar. Mark’s boat, Great Britain, has stormed from 11th to second place, having taken a westerly course to pick up more wind, and is now pursuing the leader, Qingdao, out of sight but less 20 miles ahead.
So far there have been no major incidents (although one boat has put ashore for a crew injury), but the crews have been frantically busy with sail changes to meet the varying weather conditions which can change minute by minute.
Only 4750 miles or so to the finish of the first race in Punta d’Est in Uruguay. In a week’s time they will be near the equator and the dreaded doldrums, where fortunes can be reversed in the tricky light, or non-existent winds.
The GB team has played its “Joker”. Teams can do this one only during the entire race. It means that at the end of this leg, whatever points they score will be doubled, so there’s everything to play for
Conditions on board are tough, but the crew seem to be melding together, and their dramatic improvement in position will have raised their sprits enormously.
You can follow the race on the Clipper website. Each ship reports daily, with every crew member taking turns to write the diary. Mark has yet to make his debut.
Mark is supporting UNICEF, the Round the World Race official charity. You can donate to Mark’s cause by visiting his “Just Giving” page.