Pip Hare describes some nervous feelings as she readies for leg 2 of the Shetland Round Britain & Ireland Race
Jumpy? Unsettled? Can’t eat or sleep and keep forgetting where you have put things?
You must be suffering from the Leg 2 start syndrome, because those ere exactly my symptoms and I know I was.
The Shed is sorted for the next stage of the Shetland Round Britain & Ireland Race and amid the thunderstorms and persistent rain of the day, Phil and I have crossed all the jobs off the list were just hanging around until we could start the race to Barra at 22h 28m 38s last night.
The waiting was terrible. I knew I should have been in bed; we decided that to maximise on our lead we really need to push The Shed hard in the first hour and a half before our next in class start themselves. My biggest fear is that there will be no wind and we will sit just off the start line, until the others get out, but that is out of my hands. All we can do is sail with the wind we have.
The next leg will be a different affair entirely to the last.
At the moment the forecast is showing moderate northerly winds for around 36hrs so we will be beating up the coast of Ireland and watching for the wind to come round to the west which will be our signal to tack, some are saying the race will be won or lost on making the correct decision about the time to tack. – no pressure then!
The Shed should enjoy the upwind conditions; she has waterline length and is heavier displacement than my main rivals and so upwind sailing into waves should favour this design.
The race itself will be around 3 days long, 430 miles to windward. It will be cold and wet and the conditions will be physically punishing, slamming into waves and over on our ear for miles on end.
On the last leg we pushed really hard, foregoing sleep to make sure that both of us could be on deck and driving the boat at all times, but how long could we keep that up for?
I had a piece of advice from John Parker at Quantum East about a race strategy. He said it was important to recognise the key times when both of us would need to be on deck and pushing the boat.
However for me I think it is the opposite; I am so keen to push all the time that I will need to recognise the times when we do not need to be on deck all the time and make the most of those, or I am in the danger of exhausting us both and sailing a great first day but losing performance after that. Time to change gears.