Good Bye to Iberia 44:07.249N 21:55.67W

Doug Smith
Sun 19 Aug 2012 17:18
We are now on our way!  44:07.249N 21:55.67W  We are well out into the Atlantic about 1,000 West of Bordeaux with Southern Ireland just 700 miles ahead and over the horizon.  Sounds simple, but I fear there may be a little more work still to do before the lobster bisque of the Mersey slips under our keel.
Rick arrived on Thursday, to plan and bearing pies.  A better effort than the rest of us who missed the connection!  We sailed at 2pm Thursday afternoon and left Horta with a full display of canvass set for anybody who might have wanted to watch.  We headed west and cleared the islands by midnight then turned to starboard and into the North Atlantic.  We motor sailed at first to clear Sao Jorge, but then we were able to crack off onto a brisk reach North East under sail alone.  The boat is sailing very fast, we hit 10 knots before I reduced sail, losing my nerve, but we have maintained a steady 7 knots ever since.  The seas are quite large and its taken me three days to find my sea legs.  Normal boat problems as we go, the main cabin door fell apart just as Rick was passing, an unfortunate coincidence, but Andy managed to fix that when I told him it was essential to keep following seas out.  I fixed the main heads before leaving - well, actually it fixed itself in the middle of the night, but I'm claiming credit.  Unfortunately the same heads blocked this morning but Andy fixed that too! - he is really earning his keep.  Dave keeps threatening to use Finn pumping tactics on the mainsail, to help us down the waves but he has not actually performed as yet.
The weather is being kind to us at present, sunny by day and the wind on the quarter although the seas are true Atlantic rollers.  So, all is well.
Jean is looking after the weather for us and promises a massive low at the end of the week, as we come into the Western Approaches, so if you have any connections in high places, please use them on our behalf .
Bye for now,