Caffari retires from the Fastnet Race with few regrets

After deciding to retire following damage to her mainsail overnight, Dee Caffari says she is happy to be running back home in Aviva before worse weather arrives. She described conditions overnight to me earlier:

“Last night was wild. It was really, really black with no visibility. With so much rain and waves, you couldn’t tell which was fresh water and which was salt. It was a bit miserable.” she said.

“We had average wind of 30-35 knots and gusts of up to 38 knots, but it was a boat-breaking scenario. There were these big holes that you just couldn’t see. Big waves would hit the boat and knock it off course and it was hard work.

“I’ve been in worse, but I was in 46 tonnes of steel built for the job and this was my first experience of these kind of holes in this kind of boat. The noise was incredible. Every now and again I heard a few crunches that I was a bit worried about.

Caffari says that seasickness took its toll. Her co-skipper Mike Broughton suffered with waves of nausea, while Sir Matthew Pincent, the Olympic rower aboard as a media crew “found his favourite position was lying down with his eyes closed.”

Read more about her experience and her decision to retire on my blog.