BT Global Challenge - Leg 2 - 9th November

bow adventures for madforsailing's diary writer, Andy Magrath
madforsailing is following the BT Global Challenge through the diary of Andy Magrath, a crewman aboard LG FLATRON - and he's been doing that bowman thing. Andy Magrath LG FLATRON, Thursday 9th November; 'Some watches are busier than others - and last night between 0400-0800 was one of them. I came on deck and it was raining, the first ominous sign. Conrad (skipper) called Dickon and I over to brief us on what was going on. We had the 2.2 oz spinnaker and a full main up, and both the staysail and the headsail hanked on ready to go. The wind was blowing 18 knots, which was fine for now - but the forecast was to go round to the north and pick up to 35 knots. The other watch went down below and the breeze picked up. We hoisted the staysail and as the wind hit 25 knots the call went up to drop the kite - still pouring with rain of course. I climbed up to the end of the spinnaker pole on the downhaul, ready to spike the spinnaker free. Unfortunately, when I got up there I couldn't clip my carabiner on the pole as it was caught up in my life jacket and harness. This left me hanging on with one arm, while the boat rolls from one side to the other! Conrad calls 'spike' and I fumble to find it, desperate not to mess things up. I grab the spike and release the snap shackle with a sigh of relief! As I got ready to descend back to the deck I lost my grip on the wet downhaul and plummeted SAS style to the deck, using my feet - as much as I could - as a brake. It was actually kind of fun and relatively controlled,