Scarlet Oyster - Normal service is resumed! Day 11 on Scarlet
Will be a short one this time (I promise!)Last couple of days have been almost like something from a sailing brochure! Steady 15-18knots directly behind with blue skies and no rain, these winds closely resemble the mythical 'Trade Winds' that you sometimes hear about!Perfect sailing then?Well nearly!Having had a night of 20knots plus wind with the monster kite up a few nights ago, we have developed a sort of taste for the 'powered up' feel!, the gentle rolling along at 8knots av speed without the sensation it is all going to end in tears imminently is frankly a bit boring!Also this is not helped that a couple of boats coming down from the N have been 'enjoying' (or perhaps enduring!) our now preferred 'powered up' mode for 2 days while we have been cruising along.We have kept them at. read more...
Scarlet Oyster - Milestone day Day 9 on Scarlet
Yesterday was something of a day of milestones, 1000nm taken off the total distance, 1 full week at sea, wind finally switching to a more appropriate angle, last tack of the race (hopefully!), oh and breaking a steering cable for the first time!Sunday started quite uncomfortably as we continued to bash upwind in a NW direction, trying to gain position for the next few days of downwind sailing in good breeze.Through the night we had squalls with up tom 38knots in them, Scarlet confidently strode on upwind under no.4 jib and 1 reefed main, both these sails are from the 1st suit of racing sails the boat had back in 1988, I am amazed they are not only still in one piece but actually quite fast still!The guys onboard were pleased to have Scarlet as our steed as she took all the punishment in. read more...
Scarlet Oyster - Tough milk run! Day 7 on Scarlet
Hi all, excuse lack of blog, been a bit busy last few days!We have got our A3 spinnaker back in one piece (well we had fixed this a few days ago), bit pointless as this is apparently a non spinnaker upwind event this year!Repair looks good, 3rd time this poor sail has been beheaded!Could be a good luck omen as the last 2 times were the 2007 fastnet (where we won class 1 on line and hcap) and the ARC 2011, where we also did rather well!Certainly this year is a different race to 2011! I have already seen more than 2 years worth of rain on this trip, where as in 2011 we had only one light shower the whole crossing!90% of the 2011 crossing we were being propelled by out trusty big red runner, this time, while we have breifly used all 4 kites, we have been under white sails for 75% so. read more...
Scarlet Oyster - Into the low! Day 4 on Scarlet
Well the trials and tribulations continue!Outcomes have been quitesatisfactory tho!Yesterday we realised our sat comms were down, out of credit?!How couldthis be?I had topped up before we left Las Palmas and even had an ereciept to prove it had gone through.The inmarsat voice service allows youto check balance free of charge, and even top up if you have a voucher, butfrustratingly at the time no way of topping up otherwise!I had given details to my girlfriend Sarah of our account, in case thishappened, so she could raise the alarm and authorise a top up, so I washoping we would be back online again soon, the concern was where 100 unitsof credit had gone!We identified a ship on AIS and called them, theykindly agreed to email Sarah with a message to let her know of our plight.After 3 hrs. read more...
Scarlet Oyster - Snakes and ladders Day 3 on Scarlet
It has been an interesting race so far, with some highs and lows, somedecisions have sent us powering up the leader board others have had usdrifting back down again!Still not much sleep, prob about 3hrs so far, better than none though.Racehas been a mixture of no wind and quite a lot!Last night we were pressingon with the Asail in nearly 30knots, we have spent several hours last nightdrifting, now we have 15knots so not too bad.It has been pretty hard to see what the right thing is tactically, 2 daystime we will be passing through the low pressure, into light headwinds, itis too far to go to clear the North of it for us, and no way under iteither, we are looking closely at the weather to see where our best point ofentry may be.Going further N could see us locked out up there, with a slow. read more...