Basil Panakis
Sun 29 Jun 2014 08:13
38:41N 26:09W
We were becalmed yesterday (Jaba and I) just SE of Terceira. It was tempting to go in Praia da Vitoria and wait for a couple of days until this low goes over, but any time on the water is better. Even though we drifted we still made a few miles. The wind came back at dusk. This morning I reefed the main and just now reefed the G twice, we do not want to break things on our homeward leg. No need for over 5s and 6es.
Next was the 1985 Fastnet, big publicity with that, as Chris Searle (part of a TV series) was taking part and he was trained at Britannia and was sailing in a Britannia boat. I was second in command in an OOD 34 as there too many skippers and not enough boats. Another failure, south of the Needles we lost the rudder. I could see this silvery thing disappearing in the depths while Simon was holding the tiller in his hand. The RNLI came and towed us to Yarmouth.
Next one was the 1987, the first of many with Hope & Glory. The owner Brian had leased the boat to Britannia so he wanted to take part with me as skipper. What a prima donna he was. In one of the qualifying races he refused to take over his watch. I was not going to do two watches back to back so I told the helm steer north and we sort it out later. A keen sailor Don was not impressed. Later during the Fastnet Race Brian and Don argued and Brian threatened to kill Don if I did not get him off the boat. While still at Shamrock waiting our turn to leave, we started the engine but when you put it in gear the boat shuddered as if she was going to fall apart. Brian decided to cancel the Race, I pleaded with him about all the effort we put in the last 2 years and any case we did not need the engine, it was a sailing Race. The engine worked for charging the batteries so it was fine. Eventually we got a tow half way down Southampton Water and sailed after that. We had a tow in by a Dutch guy in Plymouth, after the Race, and a tow in Dartmouth by one of our boats. One of the guys in another boat had a wetsuit and dived under our boat to see what was of our folding prop's blade had sheared off.
In Plymouth I managed to get rid of Don before Brian came onboard as he had spent the night ashore with his girlfriend. 
Isn't life colourful.