By Brian Hancock
Let’s not forget that this race is a family, not only among the competitors, their supporters and friends and the race organisation, but all of you who follow along.
Sterna and Explorer are still out there having the time of their lives, getting hit in the face with cold Southern Ocean water, they are also still family. Technically they are out of this leg but, and I don’t mean to repeat myself, they are still family.
Speaking of family, we have some incoming tomorrow. It’s Christmas after all. I know that some, maybe five of you, enjoy my updates, but if you will indulge me, may I rise to a point of personal privilege. My daughter Tory, well Victoria, named after Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe (where she may or may not have been conceived). I took her there when she was just seven to show her, what’s called ‘Mosi-oa-Tunya’ or in English, the ‘Smoke that Thunders’ because of the spray. Tory popped out my grandson (don’t know how that happened) but I told her that there was no way I was going to be called grandpa, or grampy or Papa for that matter. I was only going to answer to Mkhulu, the Zulu word for grandpa. He’s two now and calls me Kulu. I’ll take that.
Back to the race, and thank you for indulging me. White Shadow had an amazing appearance in Auckland looking all spruced up (technical term) and a spinnaker flying. Now if your boat is named White Shadow why would you not rock up with your biggest and best spinnaker just showing off like any lady would.
The crew were all looking smart and (relatively) clean after 46 days at sea. Well done to the White Shadow crew.
Back out on the track there is some breeze down there where Sterna and Explorer are still in the rhythm of the race. Strong westerlies up the chuff for Sterna and northwesterlies for Explorer. That has to be one wet ride, but I am sure that both boats have the (freeze dried) turkey thawing and those ghastly mince pies in the oven heated. Never liked them. I know that it’s early, but maybe turn your masthead light on so that Santa can find you. And if you turn your running lights on he might think that it’s a Christmas tree. For those wrapping and packing, enjoy the eggnog and try and behave yourselves. I never do… .