Thursday 28th June - South Pacific Two Ton Run

Jon & Carol Dutton
Thu 28 Jun 2012 22:45

6:13.52S 125:44.70W

Thursday 28th June – Yes we Can – First Southern Hemisphere Two Ton Run

 271200UJun       5º20.5S                 122º07.0W

281200UJun        6º07.4S                 125º24.5W

Well, that’s been good.  Following a 24 hour run, ending at noon on Wednesday, of 190 NM we managed a 24 hour run ending at noon today of 202NM.  So, up with the clipper ships’ benchmark.  It looked to be firmly in the bag by yesterday evening as we trucked along in 16-20 knots of wind covering the ground at between 8.5 and 9.5 knots pretty steadily.  We are assisted here by a current worth perhaps as much as a knot.  Then it all went wrong in the early hours of the morning and we dawdled along at as little as 5 knots.  Then a very sharp and wet squall backed the wind by 30º, increased its speed to around 30 knots and the heavens opened for a few minutes.  Jon just about made it to the wheel in time to take over steering from a rather over-faced Orville.  One result was a tear about a foot long in one of Percy’s panels.  However, it was a narrow panel and since the tear already stretched from seam to seam within the panel, it obviously wasn’t going to get much worse.  So, we spoke some encouraging words to Percy and invited to soldier on until midday.  At midday we pulled him down for a few minutes to get some spinnaker tape on him, told him what a brave little soldier he was being and re-hoisted him.  As it turns out, had we stopped to sort him out we’d probably have come in with a distance run to noon today of 199.9NM.  Which would have been extremely irritating!

And, the person who would probably have been most upset would have been Percy.  So, there you have it.  As many an Army PTI has said: no pain; no gain.

Having seen no dolphins for about three weeks, yesterday two large pods came to play.  They are lighter in colour than others who have come to investigate “the great white whale” in the past.  They also put on extremely acrobatic display, leaping high out of the water and flipping over a couple of times.  A delight to see.

As at lunchtime today, we have about 850NM to run.