16th November 2015 Concise 2 blog
At lunch time today I put the final stitch into our huge pink spinnaker. At an estimation I have completed 43 metres of stitching to make this repair, which include sticking and sewing along the tear lines and then covering this with sticky dacron and sewing the edges of the sticky dacron. It is not going to be pretty when it goes up, some sort of hideous halloween mask gone wrong in pink. But all hopes are pinned on it staying together and getting us to the end of the race. In total I have spent over 16 hours fixing this spinnaker while Pips has been in charge of sailing the boat at least if we use it and it blows up we can say we did everything to get this show back on the road. The haggard ends of my fingers from pushing and pulling the needle through the material are testament to this effort.
The drag race meanwhile continues down the Brazilian coast and today fortune does not appear to be on our side we are about 20 miles further inshore than the rest of the pack and no matter what we do have been a knot slower than them all day, I guess we just have less wind. Like this the miles are creeping off our lead and we are being forced to play it out and hope things will get better soon.
We can’t quite see the coast but the waters around us are starting to fill up with other vessels (well fill relatively to a big empty ocean and seeing no sign of life for days) tonight and from now on we will have to be extra vigilant for the Brazilian fishing boats one of which I have had to dodge today already.
Our routing is currently showing the wind finally freeing us up enough to use the spinnaker at some point later this afternoon or this evening. This will be a tricky transition for us and we need to set some parameters about how far we are going to push the hideous pink creation which will be tough. What we really want to do is stay in the game and to do that we need to use the sail in the same way everyone else around us will be using theirs – it will be hard to hold off hoisting if conditions are marginal and we know it will make a difference. So what is the strategy to be? sensible sailing and hope for the best or go for broke with the risk of failing in a bright pink blaze of glory…. that decision hasn’t been officially made yet but as I feel the pain through the ends of my fingers with every keyboard stroke I know which way I am leaning.
Pip with Pips