Dee Caffari was among the crew aboard Henri Lloyd Cutting Edge for Ladies Day at Cowes Week 10/8/07

A day aboard Henri Lloyd’s Farr 45Cutting Edgeduring yesterday’s Ladies Day at Skandia Cowes Week in the light, unpredictable winds provided the perfect opportunity to catch up with the crew who are vying for top position in the Farr 45 fleet. It was also interesting to catch up with Dee Caffari who, having recently completed the Mini 6,50 double-handed Transgascogne race in extreme conditions, was onboard Henri Lloyd enjoying a spot of relaxed sailing for a change.

So far this week Team Henri Lloyd has had some good results including a first, a couple of seconds and thirds which put them atop the scoreboard. However, yesterday’s sixth now puts them in second just four places behindRenaissancebut discards are yet to kick in.

Yesterday’s race was, to be honest, a bit of a lottery because having had a reasonable start off the Squadron line under spinnaker in what felt like a building breeze, the wind suddenly closed down leaving all the Class 1 boats just ahead of us boats floundering in a wind hole.

Unfortunately it was too late to take avoiding action which left the fleet piled up in the Central Solent. When the wind returned the race effectively started again and from there on, it was all a bit of a lottery.

Thankfully the 12-strong crew, including the boat’s owners Martin Elwood (jib trim) and Robert Lutener (mainsheet), and helmsman Stacey Clark coped with the situation admirably and before long we were back on track trucking along in a good 13kts of breeze.

Unfortunately however, from there on, on the zigzag course up the Solent, there was little opportunity for overtaking and the race became a bit of a procession.

Tom Wilson – crew Boss said: “A bit of a disappointing one today particularly as we had such a good start. Although it did turn in to a lottery credit must go to those who headed for the mainland shore and avoided the big hole. If you got left behind today it was almost impossible to make any gains. There you go, it was just one of those days.”

Chatting about her day on the water on Ladies Day with Team Henri Lloyd, Caffari said: “We were out numbered onboard but the guys took very good care of us and had a fabulous race with a crew which was a really nice change for me.

“Everyone was really calm, relaxed and really enjoyed the sailing. A bit frustrating with a few manoeuvres but the crew quietly just got everything back on track. I had a great day.”

Chatting about her new Open 60 for next year’s Vendee Globe, currently in build in New Zealand Caffari added: “We’re hoping the new boat will go in the water on 10 December in Wellington so I’ll be going down in January to do sail testing. Can’t wait. Apparently the bulk heads have just gone in an all is progressing well.”

Caffari was also pleased to announce her association with Henri Lloyd. Caffari has become Henri Lloyd’s Technical Clothing partner for her Aviva Ocean Racing campaign which also means her and her team will be wearing Henri Lloyd’s technical marine clothing range during her preparation for and while competing in the Vendee Globe race, which starts in November 2008.

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