Det blev en jämn och spännande start när de åtta deltagarna i Volvo Ocean Race startade från Kapstaden. Målet för den påbörjade delsträckan ligger i Indien, dit deltagarna har över 4 000 Nm. De båda svensk båtarna ligger på fjärde (Ericsson 3) respektive sjunde (Ericsson 4) plats, men än så länge har båtarna seglat för kort distans för att det ska ge ett tydligt utslag.
Förhållandena är väldigt lugna med en genomsnittlig båtfart runt 7 knop. Här följer det första meddelandet från Ericsson 3:
ERICSSON 3 LEG TWO DAY 2 QFB: received 16.11.08 0949 GMT
No one that was watching the Cape Town start from a boat will never ever forget it. It was like experiencing the whole first leg in one hour. We had everything from 25 knots to almost no wind at all. The fleet was a bit separated after 25 minutes, but then we went into a big light spot, just outside the harbour, in the wind shadow from Table Mountain. It felt like a mini Doldrums where anything could happen.
And things were really happening. But mostly before the ‘Doldrums’. From our perspective, not everything went very smoothly. Our jib got caught on the radar in one of the first tacks and got a small rip. The sail was not the most irritating part, but the fact that the radar was hanging on a thread. It was about to get even worse.
In the third tack, the sail got caught again and ripped badly. At the same time, the radar fell down in the cockpit. Not a very nice feeling when you are heading for the Southern Ocean and later up to India, passing the equator where big squalls are very common and the radar can guide you through them.
Well, on the lucky side is that no one was hit and that we managed to stay in the race. Hopefully we can fix it. According to Jens Dolmer, our hard working handyman, it is possible.
The sail has already been fixed. Skipper Anders Lewander and Martin Stromberg started repairing straight away and finished a couple of hours later. It was quite a big rip and the sail will never be as good as it was, but pretty close to it, the guys did a great job.
Now I’m sitting in the darkness beside the media desk. It is very hard to stay awake before you get use to rhythm onboard. I don’t know how many times I have fallen asleep during the time I’ve been writing. I always wake up in a few seconds with the screen full of letters, which I have pushed in my sleep.
Over and out from Ericsson 3, meet you soon again.
Gustav Morin – MCM