Home > Journals > Around Alone

Ocean Planet Report
Ocean Planet Around Alone Log
Friday, Sept. 27, 2002
Pos: 48 39 N, 17 44 W, heading 70-80 mag,
COG 55-65 mag. (difference due to lots of surface drift and leeway).
Speed 5-7kts.
Wind 27-37kts from SE.
Waves: you don’t want to know.


Doing the hokey pokey: wallowing, crawling, inching forward, with the staysail only. With this setup, there is a lot of lee helm and it is impossible to point very well into the wind. I can wish for the main with a third reef, but that won’t happen till leg two! Unfortunately, this present course puts me in Ireland….the much longed for right shift in the wind won’t be until Saturday at best. Being a racer at heart, it is quite frustrating to watch the other boats sail away to the finish, when I know I’m on perhaps the fastest upwind boat in the fleet.

But I’m playing it safe and sticking with the staysail as the conditions are very rough. Every few minutes a breaking wave crashes over the boat sending water across the deck and cockpit. I’m very happy with our “vestibule” cockpit design. Even in this extreme stuff I can leave the companionway hatch open for ventilation and no water gets inside! Right now I am using only about 2/3’s of starboard ballast tank in order not to put too much water pressure on my repaired leak. In England we are going to beef up the whole tank bulkhead on each tank just to be sure.

Bernard Stamm on Bobst Group/Armor Lux was first to finish already with Theirry Dubois on Solidaires second. It is a tight race for third (since I’m not there….), but I think Patrick De Radigues on Garnier has been sailing very smart and will get it. Tiscali should be close behind and the Hexagon and Pindar will duke it out for fifth and sixth. I’ve got seventh in division locked up….har!!, but seventh across the line will most likely be Class 2 star Brad Van Liew who has left the rest of his division hundreds of miles behind with his boat “Tommy Hilfiger’s Freedom America.” Way to go Brad! It was a little frustrating to have him pass me, but he knows that with Ocean Planet armed with her mainsail it would be a different story. 

The pounding and slamming is intense as I tap this out. It is hard just to stay in the nav seat, let alone type! 

Spent a lot of time on the satphone today, planning out things in England, not looking forward to the next phone bill, that’s for sure…. 

Later for now. Going to finish my (freeze-dried) dinner and crawl around looking for water in the boat. I like to keep the water on the outside..



Next Story