We've decided that although we left the Las Palmas marina to the sound of the 'Yeo Valley Naturally' song on the stereo, we should change Maunie's tune to the 'Theme from Rawhide' as we're certainly Rolling, Rolling, Rolling now!
The 11.00am start was quite a spectacle, with 200 yachts jostling for position for a good start; some jostling more competitively than others, it must be said, with 2 boats incurring a 3-hour time penalty for being over the line before the gun. We got a good start and were soon charging south with boats all around us. Big rain squalls brought 30 knot gusts so we reefed down (reduced the sail area) and then dropped the mainsail to sail through the night with just the yankee (foresail) up, a safe and still-fast rig. We've been averaging close to 7 knots and are currently (10.00am) about 75 miles due south of La Gomera, heading slightly south of due west.
Conditions were pretty tough on board with Force 6-7 winds behind us and a 3 metre swell so Maunie has been sleigh-riding down the waves. Getting any sleep off-watch has been tough so we are all feeling a bit jaded this morning. However, a full moon last night, bright sunshine and dolphins all around us this morning and a breakfast that included Bimbo toast have been highlights of the passage so far. The dead squid found on the deck was a surprise too.
Thanks for your messages and we hope that you can follow us on the Fleet Viewer. We're about to download the weather forecast to decide on our course strategy. At the moment, following the Great Circle (shortest distance) is good, with these fresh NE winds, but we think we'll need to head south to avoid a low pressure system at the weekend. Best wishes from the Maunie Crew.