By Brian Hancock
It’s a sultry Sunday morning and I am sitting in my sitting room glued to the Yellow Brick Road, sorry Yellow Brick tracker. You can’t wipe the smile off my face. I saw that photo of the Fun-O-Meter winners, Godspeed, as they truck out of Portugal and right into the Portuguese Trades. I did notice that they were a little down on their lines but I guess that Portuguese cheese and (the best) port, yes the drinkable kind, take up some room on board and probably account for the boat being a little deep in the water. Go guys (and two ladies) you can do it. Cape Town awaits.
I see that the Saffa’s on Sterna are also enjoying themselves. Their morning tweet said it all. “Still sailing with average speeds of around 10 knots. Wishing for some excitement.” I can see why they never landed a book deal. Make something up, like I do… I have written 15 books by the way.
The tweet from Maiden found a sweet spot with me. Not the one about them doing a wind dance to get some breeze up the chuff. The one that read “A2 spinnaker flying, cassette playing. Pure good vibes.” It reminded me when I did the ’80/90 Whitbread Race with the first, and by happenstance, last Soviet Union entry (when the race was over the Soviet Union was also over. It crumbled; we didn’t). But I digress. The Soviets did have a cassette player but they only thought to bring one tape. Just one. They stuck it in as we left Southampton and it auto-replayed itself all the way to Uruguay. I didn’t learn a word of Russian but I can sing 14 Russians ballads by heart. True story.
I feel that I haven’t given my mate Tapio (on Galiana WithSecure) enough love. Funny name for a boat, but nevertheless. I knew Tapio from the ’81/82 Whitbread when he raced on Skopbank of Finland. I like that name. In South Africa Skop means kick and that’s pretty much what I would like to do to my bank. But again I digress. Their tweet said, “Adventure 06 Got a cow size hole in our biggest sail.” Now my real job is as a sailmaker and I understand how big a cow sized hole is. Apparently their onboard sailmakers made short work of things and the sail is repaired. Tapio is a wonderful human and a great sailor and I hope that he and his crew are enjoying a sultry Sunday. I just wish that I could serve them a roast beef lunch with Yorkshire pudding and gravy. Tapio’s reference to cows gave me the idea.
I will wait until tomorrow to address the Pot au Noir because the (on the water) leaders are about to get themselves into a hot mess of no wind and sudden squalls and after that a big bump as they pass into the Southern Hemisphere. Good times ahead.