Rubber banding it

The distance between the Volvo leaders continues to fluctuate

Friday March 22nd 2002, Author: James Boyd, Location: Transoceanic
Business Plan For Anthony, SEB's new recruit Jon Gunderson reports

Blue skies have returned today and the wet weather gear has once again been retired to its rightful place - the rack in the bow. It has been dark for about one hour now and the boys are still wearing just shorts up on deck. We are getting along nicely, the stars are out and we even have the beginnings of a moon.

The Caribbean is now only a few hundred miles away and stories of northern hemisphere winters spent there are beginning to surface. Racing large cruising boats in Antigua race week seems far removed from where we are now, but this time next year will probably find the majority of us doing exactly that.

Trade wind sailing has a tendency to be very repetitive, since midnight on the first night of this leg (11 days ago) we have spent a grand total of about one hour on port tack.

On board SEB we have an interesting mix of Europeans and Antipodeans - which makes for a unique brand of humour, even when the sailing gets a little tedious spirits remain high around here.

This evening the Scandinavian influence was dominating and there was a disturbing amount of nudity on deck: come to mention it, under the cover of darkness I am not all together sure that all the guys on deck even have shorts on. Certainly not the kind of thing you would see on a boat full of just Kiwis and Australians, but then again I doubt a fully Swedish team would be discussing cricket and rugby scores either.

On our watch Anthony [Merrington] has revealed his plans for ‘caf sydney’ when he returns to Australia. We have offered a lot of useful suggestions, tips and alternative names during the day but it would seem that his business plan will not be incorporating any of our ideas at this stage. I can't imagine why not.

Progress is good towards both Miami and Kiel, it was pointed out today that our longest time at sea between now and the finish will be only 12 days, the 30+ days of leg one have faded into the past and there is already a lot of talk on board about the next race - most of the SEB crew will be there given the chance.

Gundy [Jon Gunderson]

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