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Three Days In... And Still In The Lead!

Nearly 3 days into the race, and we're still clinging onto the lead! Spirits
are high, and it looks like our plan to sail straight to Bermuda is paying
off so far. We're hoping to keep the great wind we've been enjoying!
A wholesome dinner of Fray Bentos pies from blue watch set us up for the
night, we particularly enjoyed playing raw cabbage/onion roulette.
Conditions were challenging, and mother watch more than made up for it with
an excellent cheesecake. White watch enjoyed our daily Gately family quote -
always believe in yourself! This was particularly relevant as we came onto
dog watch with some exciting sailing under the asymmetric spinnaker, the
wind hotting up and nervous laughter all round. We were flying along (11.5
knots!) in the right direction, but as sunset approached the decision was
made to bring the spinnaker down overnight. Fortunately the spinnaker
agreed, and as red watch took up drop stations (and as soon as Sarah handed
the helm over to Chris, the mate) it decided to come down of its own
accord. Unfortunately, the (7mm diameter) metal ring in the head of the sail
had snapped. Chris quickly returned the helm to Sarah's safe hands and we
safely recovered the kite from the water with no damage. Some wet wooling
from a tired mother watch followed, and the head has now been fixed with
some dyneema (our dyneema preventer is getting shorter and shorter as we use
it for essential repairs!). We're looking forward to hoisting it again to
see if Lois' stitching holds fast!
A busy and sweaty mother watch for white watch today, including some heroic
heads (toilet) pump fixing from Alexa. There was a fair amount of
de-clogging before she could grease and reassemble. The deck watches have
enjoyed some beautiful sunny sailing under the symmetric spinnaker today,
and everyone is currently enjoying the salt water hose on deck for a much
needed first shower since Gran Canaria!

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Rona II blog 23rd Aug 2017

> Disaster strikes! After arriving in the visitor marina of Le Havre at
> 0430,
> Rona II drove over a stray rope which had been left in the water.
> This tangled around the propeller, causing the Skipper to call for the
> anchor to be dropped a mere 10 metres from our intended mooring position.
> The crew then had to inflate the rubber dinghy and set world class rower
> Theo Darlow to take a line to shore where himself and Dr Sam Wareing
> pulled
> the boat in.
>
> In the morning, the afterguard set off to find a commercial diver to cut
> the
> rope free from the propeller. They located a man named Patrick, who
> arrived
> to the scene of the incident at about 1500 donning full scuba gear; he
> quickly got into the water and began working away at the stern of Rona II.
> After roughly 45 minutes of fishing bits of rope from the marina water,
> the
> crew saw Patrick emerge victorious. Angus Elliman used his bilingual
> …

No sailing, but a busy day aboard Rona II

This was a very French start to a very French day: at 0900 the Tricolor was
hoisted to signify the start of Bastille Day onboard Rona II. Our culinary
stars for the day, mother watch the Mayans, started well, with them
presenting the crew with great pancakes and only a small galley incident
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Matt (Woodcock - we've got three Matts...) was woken up for his watch to the
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porridge" to start his birthday. His card, beautifully drawn by Watch
Officer Nathan's sons Tay and Cai before we left, was also presented. Mother
watch in fact kept themselves very busy today by baking various cakes, three
excellent meals, and three varieties of bread, including a plaited loaf
"they quickly whipped up" between meals!

The skipper's quiz started today with a political history round featuring
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Spa day aboard the resolutely masculine Rona II...

As the sun crests the horizon, the crew of the Rona II are rousing and
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slipped back into the oven for a 2nd bake. Unfortunately, due to
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and even Lewis turned his head when offered the gooey core. Ed unexpectedly
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