by Amory Ross
Volvo Ocean Race, Day 13 of Leg 6. Amory Ross, MCM for Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg, reports on the crew's progress:
Kiwi teammates Kelvin Harrap trims the spinnaker for Brad Jackson on the wheel. Onboard PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG during leg 6 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12
'Oh it’s not so bad. As long as we are drifting faster than the other guys, it’s actually quite good,' Michi Müller.
It’s a good thing we’re floating in a lawless land because closer to shore someone might charge our sails with assault and battery for the inflicted violence it continues to exact on our rig. As we drift here, swaying side to side, the mainsail aggressively shakes life down below with its pendulum sweep across the deck, repeating itself every four seconds for what seems like an eternity now. Boom…boom…boom. It only seems to worsen with time.
Even though yesterday’s conditions were slow, they were better than expected. Even though we found ourselves in a massive split from Telefónica and Camper, we came out all well, lead still intact. Even though we went hours in sched darkness thanks to a technical glitch, we persevered – almost enjoyed – the comms blackout. Yesterday had the potential to be very bad, but it turned out to be quite good. Tonight on the other hand has been anything but.
The instruments show just one knot of wind, and I would argue that a cruel inflation of the facts: there is nothing, anywhere. Fortunately, Camper is here too. We can see them and for the time being at least, we’re surviving. Unfortunately, Telefónica is not here, and we cannot see them. Who knows how they’re doing… it’s so far beyond our control at this point I haven’t bothered to look. We are where we are now and the only thing of any relevance is how fast we can leave.
Hopefully the answer is soon, because this really sucks. But we are at the mercy of the weather gods, and all too often in this race mercy is a courtesy they have never felt particularly obliged to extend!
Staying tuned, patient and positive as ever. Today could be a tough one…
Tom Addis talks strategy with watch captain and helmsman Tony Mutter before he goes on deck. Onboard PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG during leg 6 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12, from Itajai, Brazil, to Miami, USA. (Credit: Amory Ross/PUMA Ocean Racing/Volvo Ocean Race)
Puma Ocean Racing website
Volvo Ocean Race website