Monday, October 13, 2008

PARKING LOT... in the Straits of Gibraltar

Photos by jrenedo/
Just 48 hours into Leg 1 and the fleet are staying within touching distance of each other after exiting the Straits of Gibraltar yesterday. After the champagne sailing conditions for the start, Green Dragon lost valuable miles as they tried to exit the Gibraltar straight. The Dragon had built up a good lead over Puma Telefónica Black, but they were able to sail straight up to Green Dragon in the dying breeze.

The two Ericsson boats exited the Straits first, with Green Dragon, Telefoncia Black and PUMA all hot on their heels as they pushed south past the coast of Morocco. The 1600 GMT polling showed Green Dragon in 5th with just 8 miles separating the top five boats.

Skipper Ian Walker commented, “We have finally escaped the Med despite being parked for hours off Gibraltar. This was frustrating, as we had built up good leads over Puma and Telefonica Black, they were able to sail right up to us in the dying breeze. We seem to be struggling for speed relative to others when the wind shuts down. As of this morning the top five boats could all see each other as we gybed on the shifts heading South down the African coast. We can no longer see Ericsson 4 but Ericsson 3 is just ahead as are Puma and Telefoncia Black”. -