An Aussie abroad


James Boyd spoke to Nick Moloney currently racing on board Orange in the Jules Verne Trophy
At the time of madforsailing's crackly interview over satcom with Orange's sole non-French crewman Nick Moloney, the Australian former America's Cup and Whitbread crewman was mentally composing himself. While Orange was motoring - the log was fixed on 31knots at the time we spoke - Moloney was aware that he and the crew of the 110ft catamaran were soon to be in for another stint of filling-loosening upwind sailing. Although modern cats such as Orange are highly efficient upwind animals, capable of sailing in the high teens on this point of sail, the motion - the incessant hobby horsing and pounding - is wearing in the extreme. "There's the possibility of our racing into strong headwinds. Hopefully we won't be in it for very long. She's not much fun upwind," he commented with characteristic Aussie understatement. To date the most hair-raising point of Orange's speedy lap of the globe was when the wind and sea-state were so awful that they had to go hove to - an interesting manoeuvre in a 110ft catamaran in the middle of a Southern Ocean storm. "The breeze built and the seaway was such that we couldn't go down any more. We started to regularly stuff the bows in the troughs. We had three reefs in and were bareheaded, but we couldn't slow down enough," Moloney described with a shudder. "It was becoming a dangerous situation". It took some courage to turn up into the wind as before they did so they had 30 knots of apparent wind and as they turned upwind they nearly broached as the apparent shot up to 55-60 knots. To make the turn they eased the main off as much as they could to depower the rig. Once head to wind they then set about trying to lower the

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