Long time no post! Too busy for the internet I guess which is no bad thing! The official training for the clipper round the world is now complete with Levels 1,2 and 3 all sorted. Level 3 was very different to 1 and 2, not only because it was nice and hot but we also got to finally taste the new 70's! Two feet longer but with a considerably different lay out both inside and out, it definitely feels like a more serious and modern racing yacht than its little sister the 68. With a centralised galley, the nav station towards the stern and bunks more spread out I personally felt there was more room, although others felt more cramped. The sails are no longer in and around your bunk but rather in a place of their own which makes for more comfort and better organisation. Two coffee grinders allow for the gorillas to really get pumped on winching up the sails, but care is needed not to over do it and ensure what is being ground is what is intended! Another difference is the twin steering system that allows you to helm from either up high or down low, depending on your preference. I really liked this addition not to mention the back support / protection that means you feel slightly less exposed from the derriere! Team GB is currently in Trafalgar square so if you are in London get on down there to check out its full splendour, albeit with a rather puny temporary mast! We are still Team Chris Excellence with no official sponsor as yet but I'm sure that will be announced soon and as most of the crew are from eastern Australia it's likely to be from that neck of the woods! This week we found out the leg 4 and 5 destinations and starting points, not to mention a better idea of dates. Good news is I'll be leaving from Brisbane on the 6/7/8 January but the awesome news is that the Sydney to Hobart race has been added to Leg 4! How jealous am I and how tempted to add leg 4 to the itinerary!? So further training continues, albeit unofficially, with racing and friends around Sydney as the start date looms and the bug for being on the water all the time sinks its teeth deeper..... I'm not going to bore you and post yet more training pictures and videos, but below is the schedule. Race Schedule
My leg as you can see is split into three sections and two clear races, from Brisbane to Singapore and on from there to Qingdao. Its the longest leg and has both extremes of heat and cold. The first section is beating north up the Gold Coast past the awesome Whitsundays and the Northern Territories. The second sees us enter the Doldrums and cross the equator into tropical temperatures and remote Papua New Guinea communities on into the South China Sea and Singapore. Here there will likely be Monsoon winds and possibly some severe weather systems. Tropical heat will then gradually turn bitterly cold with thermals and layers the order of most days and snow likely. The sea will be rough and sporting as we head to Qingdao in China, so this leg really has it all!
Ciao for now!