Monday, May 25, 2009
Para Anchors All Round! by Woodvale May 20, 2009
Para Anchors All Round!
20 May 2009 16:48 BST
As of the early hours of today, the entire fleet has been experiencing some particularly heavy Indian Ocean weather. Thirty knot winds and 6 metre high waves are forecast to remain over the fleet until this coming Saturday.
This has all but stopped the racing fleet in their tracks and all the competitors can do is batten down the hatches, sit tight and wait for the conditions to improve.
Although any rowing in the direction of Mauritius is currently out of the question, the name of the game at the moment is to prevent being blown backwards over old ground, towards Australia. This is where the all important Para Anchor, a vital piece of mandatory equipment, comes into its own.
When deployed, the Para Anchor will decrease the effect of the Westerly wind but more importantly, it helps to keep the boat end on to the waves, reducing the chance of a boat capsize.
Although, this heavy weather system is affecting the entire fleet, it is the two Pairs teams, Boat No. 9 ‘Southern Cross’, Boat No. 6 ‘Flying Ferkins’ and the one remaining Solo entry, Boat No. 3 ‘Old Mutual Endurance who are suffering the most. This can already been seen by the latest positions, course and speeds shown on the Progress Page of this site.
Although they are not yet being pushed backwards by the current conditions, leading boat, Boat No. 7 ‘Bexhill Trust Challenger’ in the North of the fleet have also been affected and their boat speed has dropped considerably to just over 1 knot. This means that the halfway celebrations will have to go on hold for a little while longer.
It’s going to be a rough couple of days but on the positive side, a opportunity for the competitors to rest from rowing and tend to sores, aches and pains.