Day 8 (Mon 11 Jan 1330 - Tue 12 Jan 1330)
The eighth day saw crews continue to impose themselves towards the finish with a combined total of nearly 1350nm rowed with a DMG of 1250nm, an average of 42nm per crew. Between them the crews are covering the race distance every 2 days. This race just keeps getting faster and faster as the crews settle into a regular pattern. Charlie Pitcher has retaken the lead from QBE Insurance Challenger and Karukera and continues to push his body, sleeping just 4 hours a day.
The fleet should continue to benefit with South Westerly and West South Westerly winds of between 10-20 knots for the next 3 days. Expect most of the crews to continue heading south west until 21-22 degrees north, at that point they should then head for the finish line on a heading of 260.
Notable performances include that of Roger Haines in Dream It Do It. Roger was on his para-anchor for the first few days in the tough Westerly winds. However, in the last 72 hours he has managed to make over 100nm to the finish and climb from 29th to 24th overall and from 7th to 4th in the solo class. Dream Maker, the pairs crew of Mick Birchall and Lia Ditton have also moved up 6 places to occupy 9th in the fleet and 8th in class after a tough few days of sea sickness while Dean Jagger and Neil Gyllenship have also had a successful 72 hour period climbing 7 places in the fleet to 14th.
Many of the crews are continuing to experience the beauty of rowing an ocean. Regular reports are now coming in with sights of birds, sharks, dolphins and whales, as the crews take in some truly breathtaking experiences, although several crews have been quick to question, “why are there birds so far out to sea, just ‘flapping’ around?” Answers on a postcard please.
Britannia III continued to move well, having rowed a DMG of 78nm yesterday, their best yet. This figure has risen each day, and they shall soon surpass the 500nm mark. They are currently 130nm south and 75nm west of La Mondiale on her record crossing in 2007 following the same time at sea – proof if needed that the record is on.