Brian Thompson on Banque Pop: Weed

Brian Thompson on Banque Pop: Weed

Wednesday January 4 2012 Author: Brian Thompson Location: none selected

Going through the Sargasso Sea today - there is the weed everywhere..

We have not caught any of this weed on our foils, though last night we caught a plastic bag on the leeward rudder. We had to furl the gennaker, head upwind to slow down, then go backwards to clear the bag, then unfurl the gennaker and set off again..

But what is a plastic bag doing in the middle of the Atlantic? Someone must have thrown it off a vessel - not good. Like all racing boats, we keep every bit of non food or paper items till we get back to land.

Not much wildlife out here that we have seen at these speeds..

Wind is picking up today, now it's double yesterday's wind. We have18 knots and we are in the high 20's of boatspeed. Running downwind with full main, medium gennaker and staysail..

Still fantastic sailing conditions around the High Pressure system, and after what may be our final gybe this afternoon, we are heading more towards the Old World of Europe than the New World..Good news!

Yesterday evening in the lighter wind Pym and Manu made a thorough inspection of all the watertight compartments on the boat, and Florent went to the top of the mast and down again to completely check the mast. Pym and Florent have been tireless this whole voyage, they have always been on top of all the little maintenance jobs around the boat..

So from the West a cold front approaches, and the tightening of the isobars will slowly increase our wind speed during the night..But the plan is to always stay ahead of the front and in the optimum wind speed for us. We should be able to fine tune our position to do this. That's the wonder of the latest weather models from the US and Europe, of the routing software on board, and of having an extremely fast boat that can keep up with a speeding low pressure system!

Last night was incredible for the stars - even with half a moon shining. It was another great dawn and sunrise at the end of the night too. Our watch is the lucky one currently, having sunset and sunrise on our on watch times.

Anyway, it's time to prepare another freezedried dinner party for 14 this evening..

And the mighty Banque Populaire is now heading for the barn!


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