Skipper Ger O'Rourke provides today's exclusive YW team blog from the heart if the action in the Volvo Ocean Race

One of the biggest surprises of the event so far has been the impressive performance of Ger O’Rourke’s team. Currently right up in the pack, skipper Ger O’Rourke provides todays exclusive YW team blog.

Delta Lloyd Skippers Log Day 6 0922hrs, position 60nm west of Africa,
300 miles south of Canaries, boat speed 22 knots (for last 18 hrs).

We gybed approximately one hour ago and we are now making jib heading SSW for our Scoring Gate, which is an island called Fernando some 2,160nm away off the coast of
Brazil. The O700hrs race report gave us 3rd position behind Puma & Erisson 3. The Dragon is behind us by 5 miles, but further west and we cannot see her. The Russians are making good progress behind us, gaining 11 nm between 0300 and 0600 hrs. We are now in 23 knots of wind speed and hope to make lost miles back. Ericsson 4 has gone out to right of the course with the first clean break away from Puma. Time will tell who is correct. Next big decision will be where to cross the equator, all to play for. Telefonica Black & Blue are 38 & 208 miles behind us.

All crew doing a great job keeping us in poll position, it’s a long race yet. There is still greater pressure left of the race course, but we will have to make a decision to go more west to get best equator crossing (9 equator virgins aboard, including myself?Neptune is waiting).

Water maker giving a bit of trouble, but we are fixing it as we go. We have had our A4 largest spinnaker up now for 4 days VMG at 20 knots, bow being caught in waves approx 15% of the time. I am concerned about the wear this sail is taking in the first few days, as Volvo have a limit on sails and I have on budget. How is it going to last till June 09 at this pace. With a sewing machine and two sail makers aboard we can carry our repairs, but we would loose miles to the fleet. So, it’s a percentage

It was interesting to see “Village Banking Micro Finance” logo on the sail, as we raced beside the coast of Africa. That is where this non profit charity have and continue with contributions to help so many poor people to get a start.

Life aboard is good. With Husty spreading his cold to Krusty, we have implemented two specially tagged drinking bottles, as we can not afford an outbreak on any more crew. It takes 10 guys at a push to sail at 100%. Also once a day washing with hot water when possible good day from the good ship Delta Lloyd.

Ger O’Rourke, Skipper of Delta Lloyd