38:57.6N 007:49.6E

Global Yacht Racing's EH01
Global Yacht Racing - sponsors: Caspian Services
Sat 1 Nov 2008 19:44
Saturday 1st November: We awoke this morning to a rather unusual yellow ball thing located in a beautiful crystal blue sky so in a moment of madness I decided to abandon my traditional black fleecy all-in-one romper-suit number for shorts. I am sure I will pay for it later but at this point it seemed I should throw caution to the wind and join the rest of the crew in shorts.

Speaking of crew - I would like to welcome George to our crew - he joined us in Cagliari and will be with us until Las Palmas which is great.

So with the crew fully briefed and the deck rigged for sea we slipped lines at 0830 hours. On exiting the harbour we motored out dodging the shipping and in a rocketing 1.1knots of breeze we prepared ourselves for a spot of motor sailing! After the winds and torrential rains of yesterday this did make a nice change however a sailing yacht under motor is all wrong!

With a constant eye on the weather I downloaded a three day forecast. A lovely run for the next couple of days seems perfect for us at the moment and the suspected second dose of gale force winds that was prediced in and around the Straits of Gibraltar appears, at this stage, to be heading north before our meeting with it and therefore as I write this we should be able to head directly to Gibraltar without stopping in southern spain - however, weather in the Med is very unpredictable and I will watch with interest over the next few days.

We all settled into the day nicely and George has enjoyed getting to know the boat and crew whilst helming his way off the coast of Sardinia for us. A relatively relaxing start under motor was followed by the engine finally going off as the wind picked up enough for us to sail and make good ground. I took the opportunity to grab a little snooze.

When one awakes with one's face pressed firmly against the side wall of one's cabin one realises that perhaps there may just be a little too much canvas up for the conditions! I peeled myself off the wall, stumbled into my boots and appeared on deck muttering something about the rig traditionally pointing upwards. We popped in a reef (and for those non-sailors amongst you we made the main sail alittle smaller) and with the world suddenly looking a little better from a much more manageable angle we powered on through a starlit dark night at 9 knots.

Sausage and mash for supper was followed by a watch change and whilst I sit at the chart table waxing lyrical about the day's activities I notice the horrific smell of feet so early on in the trip - not nice!

Em Pontin- Skipper