Business as usual

The Volvo fleet are hard on the wind again

Monday January 28th 2002, Author: Peter Bentley, Location: Transoceanic

Paul Cayard enjoying the ride on Amer Sports One

From Amer Sports One, Paul Cayard says "Here We Go Again."

Settling in to his writing style as well as the sailing, Cayard writes from the boat:

"Auckland put on a fantastic send off for us yesterday. Thousands lined the Viaduct to cheer the teams and wish them well on the 7000-mile voyage to Rio. Out on the water, hundreds of spectator boats paced alongside the fleet creating a wash that no one minded. It is fun to be a sailor and be in Auckland.

Now that we have been out here for a few hours, it is all coming back to me. The motion, the sounds, the small quarters. I arrived in Auckland one week prior to the start and my mission has been to try to remember what I knew and did four years ago. I have received excellent help to help me prepare for the leg from our meteorologist Clouds, aka Roger Badham and Amer Sports One tactician Dee Smith. I am replacing Dee on this leg due to his shoulder operation. Dee has helped me all week to relearn to run the router so I can help our navigator Roger Nilson make decisions. And Clouds has been schooling us up with valuable insight to the weather over the next four weeks. So with their help I was able to leave today with a certain confidence in our ability to work together with Roger and contribute to the team.

Meanwhile the rest of the team has been very busy preparing the sails, the food, the medical supplies, safety gear and everything else that we need for the long voyage. A big thanks from the crew of Amer Sports One to the entire shore team of Amer Sport and Nautor Challenge for all their hard work during the past three weeks to get our boat ready for this challenging race. Now they should get some well-deserved rest before we arrive in Rio.

The start was fantastic, all the yachts out on the gulf to see us off. It has been hard sailing for the first 12 hours, tacking every 30 minutes or so which is very tiring as the crew shifts all the gear aboard, above and below deck. Currently we are fetching East Cape on port tack with about 100 miles to go. The wind is a bit more to the north than expected so this makes for a bit quicker ride.

Tomorrow's forecast shows the wind dropping considerably from the 11 knots at present. There is a large high-pressure system sitting out the east of New Zealand. So the trick will be to find a way around this obstacle. There is good wind to the south but we just have to find a way to get south. So some tough decisions tomorrow and a lot of patience. We should be off and running with some good winds by Wednesday.

Paul Cayard, Amer Sports One

Page three.... A message from Knut Frostad

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