So finally it was time to face the storm everyone been talking about. If I remember correctly its name is Oscar? Nice challenge, face a named storm on the Atlantic, alone and more worse - in a race where you always have to make a trade off between performing and good seamanship.
My general strategy is to sail safe and with good seamanship. I don't want to risk the boat or safety, but I am still a person who is pushing the boat hard. While many other boats choose to seek shelter in Brest, Lorient and a few more places, I decided to continue meeting the wrath of mother nature. And it sure became sporty conditions. At around midnight last night wind was backing to southerly, just as forecasted. I tacked to go west and prepared the boat with two reefs in the main and then the trinquette - the staysail inside of the jib. Wind soon picked up and with the front of the storm also heavy rain came. Wind topped around 40 knots but in general it stayed around 35. Six hours later the wind started to drop below 30 and then the rest of the day the wind has been between 20 and 25 knots. But seastate has been wild and Talanta is shot out of a wave time after time, free falling down landing with a terrible crash. It really hurts me to hear this hard banging and how my lovely Talanta is suffering.
I see this as Mother Nature is testing me, to see if I'm worthy her kindness and pleasant side. And I believe I passed the test, after the front she showed me her smile when the sun came out behind the clouds. We are all tested hard and will be tested many more times. I believe it's for the good, to remind us about the way we on the other hand treats our all mighty Mother Nature. Take care of her.
It's been a real pain that I could not use the furling kite after the start yesterday. Such a pity and so many lost miles compared to the competitors. I have managed to repair the halyard and it should not be a problem anymore. But at least I'm gaining positions in the ranking, after being at the bottom I have now climbed to the middle. It makes me happy - moving in the right direction.
During the afternoon I received the very sad and shocking news that Banque Populaire had capsized. As a fellow skipper, sailing in the same conditions, it really comes as shocking news. My thoughts goes to Armel praying for him to be safe under current conditions.
Now another windy night is waiting. Wind right now is veering to south westerly, but hesitating a lot and moving forth and back and also dropping annoyingly much. But soon we're gonna rock again!
Take care of each other and stay safe!
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