Rick Tomlinson / Volvo Ocean Race
500 more photos here
ERICSSON 4 LEG NINE DAY 2 QFB:
received 15.06.09 0537 GMT
The sun was up around 02.30 GMT and we had managed to slip to the front of the pack – then at 0300 we started a small gybing duel with Puma, both sailing against the shift to get offshore to a little more breeze. Then as Puma gybed back onto the favoured angle, we just covered, putting ourselves between the opposition and the mark.
Ericsson 3 is also part of our little gang, so it is sure to be a classic struggle as we head north to Stockholm.
0500hrs – We have Puma just about 10 boat lengths behind us and Ericsson 3 a little further back and slightly to leeward. It’s about 22 kts of wind and we are sailing at around 18 – 20 kts – not bad really. Some sleep has been had as it hasn’t been the full peeling and gybing frenzy, but I’m sure that the sleep time will vanish over the next few
0520 – We are just peeling to our fractional reacher as we head further north and expect the breeze to head.
Jules (Jules Salter – navigator) has kindly brought the lurgy onboard, so we now have a few of the lads feeling a little poorly – who knows it’s most likely ‘man ‘flu’, so could be deadly!
Guy Salter MCM
ERICSSON 4 LEG NINE DAY 2 QFB:
received 15.06.09 1201 GMT
All was going relatively easily until 1045 GMT this morning when, out of the blue (i.e. – no sign on the water), came a huge wind shift.
Everyone was in a line on starboard tack, pretty much sailing direct to our waypoint 10nm from the finish line and then a header and reduction in pressure came in. The shift was about 100 degrees, so we found ourselves sailing on the wrong tack. It was one of those shifts where the boys behind should benefit by seeing it coming as it hits the boats in front.
For us it was a scramble to get the stack ready and tack the boat – after which followed a sail change to the code zero. So now rather than being in a line we are sailing on port tack with Puma behind and to windward and Ericsson3 to leeward and behind.
One scenario we are expecting is for the wind to clock round and back to where it was originally coming from – the NW. The wind speed is hovering around 5kts – so it’s going to get slower and harder now – the leg up until now has been in higher wind speed.
Some of the lads managed to get some sleep this morning, although it has been hard as it’s been pretty cold onboard and all have been in the clothes we started in. Sleeping bags are absent on this leg so it’s just a matter of putting up with it if you are cold. It’s looking like the chances of sleep have gone now as we are having to change the stack a lot to help the trim of the yacht. It’s time to roll are sleeves up to keep in the top spot
Guy Salter – MCM
Photos: María Muiña/Equipo Telefónica
Dave Kneale / Volvo Ocean Race
We found it difficult to ration our time in Vav’au, a place often called, “the Ultimate Cruisers Playground.” We sailed into Neiafu in mid-September which is considered relatively late in the season. Yet only about five of the 75 visitors moorings were vacant and 20 boats filled the anchorage on the far side of the bay. Within a week of our arrival the fleet had dwindled to half this number. The cafés ashore were still well patronized and I wonder what it would have been like in July and August. And what a bustling life it was compared to our visit here many years ago. There are now about a dozen café’s to choose from, plus several real restaurants compared to a total selection of four during our previous Pacific crossing. Each one of these café’s has its own specialties, from freshly made pasta to Thai food (Gene, you and the crew at Coconet laundry/café have convinced us Thai food can be spectacular) plus an excellent pastry bakery/café/lending library. Between times spent with our Tongan family, we often joined sailors we had met on the West Coast of the US, in Samoa and other wide flung places for visits on board. Taleisin’s cockpit was the center for the fix-it crowd. My New Zealand charts were often out while we showed southbound sailors interesting spots to visit. These cockpit chats usually lead to an invite to head ashore for drinks or dinner. We invited my Goddaughter Lini to join us for some of the musical evenings in the local bars. These turned into jam sessions when sailors brought their harmonicas, guitars and in one case a fine sounding saxophone. Fortunately for us, we had spent a lot of the previous four months either at sea or in places like Kiritimati or Nuiatoputapu where there was almost nothing to spend money on, so we were feeling flush enough to relax and enjoy our outings.
Cox Bay Skimmer
Family fun on the Thames
Photo © Duncan Mackay
Brilliant sunshine and perfect winds brought out the crowds to enjoy the Henley Sailing Club Open Day on Saturday 13 June at Willow Lane, Wargrave. Nearly all the visitors to the club were new to sailing and keen to learn more about the sport and look over the picturesque facilities at the art deco clubhouse. Tables on the immaculately mown lawns were set with flowers and protected by sunshades so that even the most reluctant novice sailor could enjoy a cream tea and watch the thrilling sailing boats skim by on the river. A posse of former Commodores; Duncan Mackay, Jeff Manning and Tim Haigh, with experienced sailors Stephen Rothery, Steve Gent, Tim Saunders, Tim Le Mare and Carol Stitson provided conducted tours and sailing demonstrations in a variety of dinghies from Mirrors and Optimists to Enterprises, Phantoms and Lasers.
Commodore Helene Hook said “This was a splendid day out for all the family with many visitors from along the length of the Thames Valley. We had guests from Reading, Henley, Twyford, Wargrave, London and Abingdon but also an intrepid couple from Preston in Lancashire on a passing cruiser who couldn’t resist the temptation to have a go at dinghy sailing. Everyone was amazed that such a wonderful place could be found tucked away down a quiet leafy lane only a few hundred yards from the main Henley to Twyford road. Nearly everyone wanted to join and show their children how to sail as well as to ‘learn the ropes’ themselves on one of the club’s collection of boats. It was great to hear so many positive people wanting to learn something new and to join in the vibrant social life we share at the club.
Roma Numero Uno
GP42 Series: Islas Canarias wins the battle, but Roma wins the war
In today’s final day of racing in the GP42 Series, a large 8-point spread between series leader Roma 2 (ITA) and runner-up Islas Canarias Puerto Calero (ESP) was going to make it hard for the Italian team to lose the regatta. There would have to have been two races with Roma getting last place and Canarias first place in both for Roma to lose.
And as unlikely as that would have seemed, at the bottom gate rounding of today’s first race that’s precisely what was happening, as a huge hole in the wind accompanied by a significant shift in direction completely reshuffled the positions in this highly-competitive fleet. Caser-Endesa (ESP), being last around the top mark having been over early at the start, got vaulted into vying for the lead with Canarias, and Roma got shot out the back to having to fight Swing for fifth.
Yet despite this and yet another big shift and drop in pressure on the last run to the finish, Canarias kept their cool, covered the fleet, and coasted to their third win in the series. Roma was able to dig back to third but not before nearly getting rolled by Turismo Madrid (ESP) in the final few metres of this strange race.
Turns out that third was enough to seal the deal for Roma, as even a last place in any second race would go to them in the tie break, having won more races than anyone else. So when race managers could not set a course for Race 2 due to the irregular breeze, the outcome was a fait accompli, and Roma wins her first GP42 Series stage in the Audi
All Results here
Overall (9 races)
1. Roma (ITA), 1+2+1+3+1+2+1+3+3= 17 points
2. Islas Canarias Puerto Calero (ESP), 2+1+3+1+5+4+4+2+1= 23 points
3. Caser-Endesa (ESP), 3+3+4+5+2+1+3+4+2= 27 points
4. Turismo Madrid (ESP), 4+4+2+4+3+3+6+5+4= 35 points
5. Airis (ITA), 5+7(DNF)+7(DNF)+2+4+5+2+1+5= 38 points
1. Roma (ITA), 22+17= 39 points
2. Islas Canarias Puerto Calero (ESP), 20+23= 43 points
3. Airis (ITA), 21+38= 59 points
4. Caser-Endesa (ESP), 33+27= 60 points
5. Turismo Madrid (ESP), 35+35= 70 points
Waves In Earth’s Radiation Belt Get Mapped
ScienceDaily (May 31, 2009) — Chorus waves, a type of electromagnetic emission generated by electrons in Earth’s radiation belt, play an important role in both accelerating and removing the energetic radiation belt electrons that can disrupt satellite electronics and disturb communications with ground-based operators.
To improve understanding of the origin and location of chorus waves, a team of researchers used data from NASA’s five Time History of Events and Macroscale Interactions during Substorms (THEMIS) satellites to create a new map of their distribution. They reported their findings in a recent issue of Geophysical Research Letters.
This image shows a three-dimensional cut-away view of the magnetic ‘bubble’ surrounding Earth, called magnetosphere. The curly features sketched on the boundary layer are the so-called ‘Kelvin-Helmholtz’ vortices discovered by Cluster [Hasegawa et al., 2004]. (Credits: ESA/Hasegawa et al)