Dee Caffari is spending this week preparing her 72ft Challenge yacht for her pending attempt at the solo westabout circumnavigation

The Aviva Challenge project team will, this week, achieve a landmark as preparations for Dee Caffari’s round the world voyage continue to gather pace ahead of her departure on 20 November.

The team took delivery of the upwind sails early this week and these have now been completely fitted to the yacht ready for ongoing sea trials. All the mechanical systems have been tested and most importantly the autopilot has been trialled successfully, leaving the Aviva Challenge team on course for Caffari’s departure from Portsmouth later this month.

Having spent a week organising endless stores in the container in Plymouth, Caffari is eager to start sea trials and commence the bonding process with the yacht Aviva. She commented: “We will be sailing and handling all the upwind sail combinations this week and this will allow me the chance to use the new furling systems and winch pedestal that have been fitted to Aviva during her modification process. I am looking forward to being able to fine tune the rig with the sails up, and completing the final tweaks to her.”

The downwind sails are due to arrive from America next week, which will allow complete familiarisation with the sail wail wardrobe. Caffari will then sail to Portsmouth ahead of an official naming ceremony at Gunwharf Quays on 16 November.