In fact the only changes have come when the wind increases or decreases as we
make a switch between two headsails, the Genoa and the Solent.

The daytime temperatures have soared and we have nowhere to hide from the
blistering sun on deck. There is no respite below decks either with our
carbon fibre living quarters enveloping us in a stuffy, sweaty blanket of
heat to create a little known dish called ‘oven baked skipper’. Somehow, I
don’t think Jamie Oliver will be rushing to add that one to his next

With spray regularly splashing over the deck it has been impossible to
alleviate the conditions by opening the forehatch into the sail locker to
create some air to flow.

We have sat slowly melting but there has been no grumbling as we are well
aware that in about one week the transition will be made from shorts and t
shirts to thermals, which will then stay on for the duration of the Southern
Ocean. For Anna, who is used to the more moderate climes of Barcelona, this
may well be quite a shock to the system.

Looking ahead, the weather system in the South Atlantic is focused on the St
Helena high pressure system and its movements.

The days ahead look complex as there will be no easy way to get from our
current sunshine interlude to the express motorway of the Southern Ocean. In
fact those in the fleet taking the long and circular route around the
outside, like the Buffalo Girls, may come out on top but for now let’s see
what us guys and gals in the middle can pull out of the bag sailing less
miles albeit possibly at a slower pace.