Nick Bubb and Pete Cumming get set for the Shetland Round Britain and Ireland race 5/6/06

With less than a week to go till the start of the Shetland Round Britain and Ireland, things are shaping up nicely. We are heading for Plymouth on Tuesday and have the final security checks to make at the end of the week. The fleet of over fifty boats will take the start at 1200 on Sunday 11 June in Plymouth Sound.

Pete and I have put KENMORE, our 30 foot trimaran, through her paces around the channel over the last few months. We tasted success in the RORC De Guingand Bowl and by the time we take the start on Sunday will have sailed nearly a thousand miles on her.

She is now almost unrecognisable from the boat that raced the last Fastnet with owner Dave Barden. She has a new 15 metre carbon wing mast, a new carbon rudder as well as a new set of Kevlar sails from Quantum.

With the Volvo 70 fleet initially talking about how leg 8 around the top of British Isles, could be one of the toughest in this Volvo Ocean Race, we are prepared for the possibility of some pretty extreme conditions. Especially as we will be sailing further north than them, up around the Shetland Islands.

We have four compulsory stops of 48 hours at Kinsale, Barra, Lerwick and Lowestoft before hopefully reaching the finish back in Plymouth in late June or early July.