Thu 14 Jul 2011 07:45
Position at 0730Z Thursday 14 July: 50deg03N, 09deg19W - that's due S of
the Fastnet Rock and due W of Land's End.

Very light winds, even lighter than expected and definitely unwanted. The
last 200 miles are proving most frustrating! At least we have company, the
60' racing yacht 'Ourson Rapide' (currently not very) joined us yesterday
morning and is still in sight a couple of miles to leeward, drifting in the
same general direction of the Scillies at about 4 knots (last night mostly under 3 knots). And another yacht
just came into view on the horizon to the N. Carina perhaps? The weather
forecast said it'd be light, but not this light. Heavily revised finish
times all round! Still Friday, for the moment, but probably pm....

The gas supply is holding up but battery charging has taken a greater toll
than anticipated and we're now sucking on diesel fumes. Luckily we've got
contingency plans in place. If the gas runs out (there's still a bit left
if we shake the bottle) we revert to emergency catering: Desperation Level
1: tinned beef stew left to warm during the day on the black non-slip deck
coating; dried pasta left to soak for an hour or two; Level 2 - eat more of
the nutrigrain bars (seriously desperate). Level 3 - add peanut butter to
the nutrigrain bars. If we run into night 21, dinner
= even more nutrigrain bars.

Just when we thought we were having a tough time with slow days, here's what
our friend Capt James Kayll of The Light Dragoons had to say about his
3300-mile 75-day row across the Indian Ocean, which he completed last week:
"How I longed to travel at 7 knots in my rowing boat! Our top speed was a
surf of 4.4 knots and our best daily mileage was 81. Quite used to seeing
0.0/0.1 on the speedo as we stemmed the wind and held some current. The last
250 nm took us over a week, with 24 hours on para anchor when only 106 miles
from Mauritius was a tad tedious... All in all 75 days and I'm willing to
wager a beard comparison? We only saw 3 whales but did spend an hour
swimming with a 25 foot mink whale as it investigated the boat. Fishing was
a waste of time, far too slow but I did manage to gaff a 35lb Dorado which
fed us well. No pirates although one tanker turned of all its lights and
switched to search beam assuming we were pirates. Only other incident was a
tanker not using AIS, nor radar, nor listening on Ch16 and who came within
100m of running us down in the middle of thenight. 2 white rockets and 1
handheld finally got his attention and he managed to turn in time"
Inspiration; it can't get that bad! (can it?).

159 miles to go.

TransAtlantic Race tracker:

If replying to British Soldier, PLEASE only send Plain Text (not rich
text/HTML) messages, without attachments, and delete this message and
previous body of text to reduce data transmitted.