Andy: And they are off, Day 1 - our start

Ron Stubbington
Mon 23 Nov 2009 19:15

28:06.70N  15:23.7W


At 18:05 in the afternoon we set the sails, turned off the engine and began the race from the start line.  A clear horizon in front of us, not another boat in sight J  So off we went.  Sad in some respects, especially the loss of being with a lot of other boats for the first day or two, happy in others that we didn’t have to incur a one or two day delay and were able to resume in 5 hours. 


So off we went.  The island of Grand Canaria is approximately round and the start was in the north east corner.  The routing is to run south past the island, then head south and west.  Some 2,900 nautical miles to go.  But first you have to go due south, no west at all, in order to avoid on the one hand a wind acceleration zone on the east side of the island (35 knots plus, you don’t want to sneak into that unawares) and secondly you keep going south to avoid a wind shadow area south of the island.  So that’s what we did for the first 18 hours.  Head mostly south with a little east in it because the wind was out of the NE.  The winds started at about 15 knots and steadily grew overnight into 25-30 knots from the NE.  So we are once again sailing a reach then a broad reach to the South or South East but making good time.  And the seas are once again choppy and sloppy.