LAT 28 33.743 S
LONG 155 30.217 E
DTF 105nm to Gold Coast Australia
ETA 0600 13 DEC 11
WEATHER Wind 235@9-10kts, sea Slight, swell 050@1m, sea 0.5m, cloud 2/8 Cl, Temp 29 C, Baro 996.5 steady
A day of many first for Gold Coast Australia due to some crazy weather conditions in the Tasman Sea.
Last night we were sailing well with our Y1 and full mainsail heading further south than the northern leaders to try to gain advantage later the next day.
Early this morning the wind backed about 30 degrees and I was woken by my watchleader to find us lifting higher than the
required course. we saw a band of clouds rapidly approaching. In the bright light of the moon I saw a large band of clouds
rapidly approaching and the order was given to put in a reef and drop the Yankee 1. No sooner had we done this but the wind
increased from 10 to 35kts. To gain more speed we hoisted the storm jib above the Yankee 1 that was now strapped to the
deck. Thirty minutes later the storm jib was back on the deck and the yankee 1 flying. This is the first time I have ever
changed from full sail to storm sails and reefs and back again and the night did not stop there.
What followed sortly after was a myrid of problems that the crew handled very well. Later in the morning our mainsheet that
we had been nursing since NZ gave way, and the crew sprung into action to affect repais.
Wind conditions have been up and down between 6 and 20 kts throughout the morning, and then dying off later in the day to 10 kts that was changing dirction all ways.
As we approached Britannia bank I analysed what could be the possible oceanographic affects of such a bank and how it may
affect the East Australian Current and calculated that the bank may cause an eddie and we may get some good speed if we
sailed up the western edge. Our plan worked, and by mid afternoon we had DLL and VFL in our sights.
After a few wind shifts GCA has come out on top. Hopefully we can maintain our position until the finish tomorrow morning. This is very exciting racing and everybody onboard is loving it. Go Gold Coast!
“Far better it is to dare mighty things than to rank with those timid spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the grey twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat”