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Come Sail with the RSP - and get wet...

You know that feeling where you're trying to go to sleep but a trickle of
water is falling on your head? That feeling where your bed leans back and
forth at angles of up to thirty degrees, and every tilt brings a fresh gush
of water onto your sleeping bag with the volume and intensity of a small
power shower? When you are on your bunk one moment and one metre above it
the next? That simultaneously funny and sickening moment when a crack team
of soggy sailors rushes into your bedroom to pump out the ever-increasing
tide of seawater under your bunk? No? Come sail with the Rona Sailing
Project, and all this could be yours. Yes, we have finally reached that
long-awaited stage of the voyage where the helmsman and lookouts must wear
ski goggles to see through the spray, the widely agreed marker for the
apogee of excitement in any sailing trip. Last night we encountered winds of
up to gale force nine, building until midnight. Luminescence made this
moment all the more memorable and the regular waterfalls of spray crashing
over the cockpit brought with them beautiful sparks which stuck to our
waterproofs, reminding us of a light show. All three guard rails were
submerged in the sea at times, and the skipper at the helm was repeatedly
knocked down by the force of the spray (but got up again immediately every
time). The watch sat in the cockpit did not sit on the bench on the low
side, but rather stood on it, with their backs resting against the bench on
the high side, such was the angle of the boat .The opening of the first
storm box was fully justified, and was rewarded by handfuls of Cliff Bars
and protein snacks to fuel the watch on deck. In spite of these trying
conditions, though, the crew's smiles are as wide as ever. After all, it
wouldn't be a proper Atlantic crossing without a healthy dose of storm.

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The Battle for the Baltimore

The Battle for the Baltimore

Twenty-Hundred hours aboard Rona II, red-watch were on deck as they spotted
something, a mere speck on the horizon. By nightfall, the speck had become a
clear outline of the much feared, feeder race winning, 'Pride of Baltimore'.
A gaff rigged schooner with raked masts and a skipper who could out salt the
sea itself.
It became a straight face off, who could hold their nerve, the race for
Boston just got red. 11pm arrived and white-watch appeared from their
slumber to the news that Baltimore were in reach. The race for the Rona boys
was truly on. "Action stations Boys" exclaimed Mr Parry, the officer on
deck.
And with that the Mizzen was swiftly hoisted and a full trim of the sails
was wistfully undertaken.
Three miles to the east, Baltimore winced! With that Rona II sped past. By
the end of their watch they had done all that they could, a 1 mile lead was
established; white-watch were sent below, job done.
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Leg 5 is off! Excited crew... Excited parents too we suspect...