I'm off. I left Cowes this morning at 4.

I'm off.
I left Cowes this morning at 4.15 and two hours later i'm clearing the Needles.
The tide is with me and we're moving very fast in a brisk 25 knots of wind. The wind is set to increase later so i'm not sure if i'll stop go dartmouth or press on, we'll see.
Well, finally we're off.
Marco.

Ready to go

I spent the weekend doing the last few odd jobs on the boat and had a chance to go out and take a few picures in the Solent, at 30+ knots I had 3 reefs in the main and the number 4 rather than a nice colourful kite but it was a nice chance to check that all the heavy weather gear was in order before setting off for the bluQube Solo 1000... Wednesday I'll leave Cowes heading for Mylor and I'm feeling ready to go.

Marco.

British Beagle

Racing again to the Horn after the storm

We are through the peak of the storm and we're happy to report that we
didn't sustain any damage... Our strategy was to slow the boat down and
let the worst part of the depression go past us before resuming our course
towards Cape Horn so that we would be behind the storm on the approach to
the cape rather than be stuck between the storm and rocky cliffs of south
America, we held back far enough from the centre hoping for less wind and
easier sea conditions and I think we found the right balance, we had
sustained winds of 40-45 knots with occasional gusts into the 50-55 range,
in line with what we expected, on two occasions we were hit by hailstone
squalls, the only piece of advice I can leave you with is "dont look at a
hailstone storm!" the small pellets of ice shot into your eyeballs at
nearly 100 kilometers an hour really hurt!

We started sailing again during the night and when things seemed to have
calmed down further we changed from the smallest of sails, the storm jib,
to the larger staysail and increased the area of the mainsail by removing
the 4th reef (which leaves exposed only a very small part of the sails)
and moving up to 3rd reef... we are now surfing down the waves in 30-35
gusting 45 knots of wind and a rather messy residual sea which hopefully
will start to ease over the next 12 hours...

We lost approximately 250 miles to Cessna who still has to face the worst
of the storm in the next 6-12 hours, interestingly the strong winds will
force them to go east of the Falklands which adds about 100 miles to the
course leaving us with a chance of cutting to the inside and perhaps
closing some of the gap? Most importantly we're all in one piece and got
through with no damage, we're now looking forward to rounding cape horn
and moving up to warmer latitudes!!!

Congratulations on a wise by Ron Newton (not verified)