LAT 01 31.0S
LONG 052 08.0E
ETA 0600z 24 July 2012
COG 330 SP 12
WEATHER WIND 120@12kts, Sea Calm, Swell NE 1m, Cloud 3/8 Cl, Cb, Ci, Baro 1004.3 falling
For most of the day yesterday Gold Coast Australia wallowed around in the calms of the ITCZ trying to make the most of every
zephyr of wind to reach the equator. An hour after sunset as the sun sunk well above the horizon the tropical clouds began
to recede and the sky began to clear bringing with it the light trade winds and Gold Coast was underway again making ground
to the north towards the equator.
At AT 2315 LOCAL (1315GMT) Gold Coast Australia crossed the equator from south to north in position 153 09.4E. For all
onboard this is a fantastic mile stone. For the round the worlders it meant crossing the equator from south to north for
the fist time, and for the crew who joined us in Gold Coast is is the first time they have ever crossed the equator by sea.
King Neptune made a delayed appearance and demanded explanations of why the polywogs should be allowed into his realm and
held court for each member to give explanation for their sins and be punished accordingly. Tribute was paid to King Neptune
in the traditional fashion as the court turned into a celebration.
This morning the trades increased and we finally had some good wind for a few hours before the storm clouds began to develop
again sucking the air from around us and once again we struggled to make way as we sat barely moving through the water.
Later in the day however the wind increased to a pleasant breeze and we sail with out light weight spinnaker up trying to
catch our Aussie competition who have been making some fantastic progress on us over the last few days. The race is still
young however and as we alter our course to the west we hope to eat away at a few miles.
The Chinese boat Qingdao has also made some excellent miles catching us up from the south and they have been able to
maintain a far better westerly heading than we can which is slightly concerning as it appears from the GRIB they will have
better conditions than we had for crossing the ITCZ. The other yachts appear to be making slow and painful progress well
south of the equator and it will be interesting to see what tactics they use for the remainder of the race.
At the moment we are in good breeze for the majority of the time and trying to avoid the storm clouds that take away the
wind and alter its direction up to 90 degrees. If we can keep this wind until sunset it is hoped that we will be able to
make some good progress to the north throughout the night and hopefully be well placed in the trades by tomorrow.
Yacht tracker viewed at http://www.clipperroundtheworld.com. email
email@example.com or richardhewson.Cv5@SkyFile.com