Summary: 0700 GMT 21.2.03 (position taken at 0728 GMT)
Position: 50 32'S 42 51'E (292 miles SE Marion Islands)
Ahead/Behind the record: 4 hours 8 minutes behind Orange (using WP6)
Ahead/Behind Geronimo: 73 hours 42 minutes behind Geronimo (using WP7)
Boat speed: 21.2 knots
Latest audio from Ellen, where she talks about seeing land and what Geronimo is up to.
Kingfisher 2 has sailed within a few miles of the beautiful Marion Island...much enjoyed by Ellen and the crew..."birds, waves crashing on cliffs, it was just awesome...all the off watch guys came on deck to appreciate it. There are a couple of scientists living there apparently...I'd like to come back and visit them one day when we're not in so much of a rush!"
There is a complex weather situation testing Ellen and weather router Meeno Schrader...."we spent nearly 2 hours discussing it last night, it's not clear how we should negotiate the next 12 hours to hook in to the next low pressure system. We are currently gybing downwind at about 20 knots, but far from the direct course...going to need to take the northerly gybe again soon, maybe in an hour," commented MacArthur at the 0500 call in. [Current heading 077 shows they have gybed heading north of East)
Ellen talks about the situation:
"...Sailed passed Marion Island yesterday - really close, just 3 miles away. Fantastic conditions - sun, blue sky - clouds just covered the mountain tops and waves breaking along the cliffs... We currently going south but probably not for much longer, perhaps an hour. The breeze is back again which is great and we can probably gybe back on to a semi decent heading. The barometers still rising... Then we will be heading between Iles Crozet and Kerguelen Island - don't think we're go south of Kerguelen unless we have to gybe south again... We are pretty far south for this area but that's good - cutting back a few miles and without best conditions in the world. We had little option on the weather front so just going for it.
"Olivier de Kersauson rounded Cape Horn yesterday - for us, it's a relief he is out of the Southern Ocean on his way north - prety awesome he's made it through without any major problems. He'll be pretty happy now that he's off back to France. But at the same time, we know that the Atlantic can be pretty nasty place as well with no wind or head winds. I don't know what he'll have but if he has as little luck as we had on the way down - it won't be a lot of fun.
"Think we're pleased that overall Geronimo is only a day and a half ahead of Orange... Many people said the record could be broken by days and days, and it's kind of reassuring to see that even Olivier is not ahead of Orange by miles and miles. For us it's feasible to catch that up and the record's not being completely exploded."