After a very long trip to the starting line, Team GS2 has taken the start of Leg 1 of the Globe 40 from Tangier, Morocco to Sao Vicente, Cape Verde Islands. The race course requires the fleet to leave the island of Madeira to port and Tenerife, Canary Islands, to starboard. So we are now in a long drag race to Madeira with a strong Northerly breeze on the beam as we head WSW. We had another hectic week of preparation in Tangier, much like in Lorient, but I was able to sneak away for 3 days of exploring the Morocco countryside with my wife Kim, daughter Sophie and sister Wendie, which was very fun. We made repairs to the boat after the long Prologue Race and replaced a leaky auto-pilot hydraulic ram with one that had been shipped from the US. Unfortunately, it got hung up in Customs and it took days to pry it free. We probably just should have brought it with us on the boat but I was trying to save weight. After all that effort, the ram is now malfunctioning, which is very frustrating. I hope the other ram can get us to Cape Verde.
So we are currently screaming along with boat speeds between 10 and 16 knots, in a wet and windy ride, alongside fellow Class 40's Milai, Amhas, Whiskey Jack, Teranga and Sec Hayai. The boats seem quite evenly matched so it should be a good battle over the next 10 days and 1900 miles, with the first boats expected to finish around July 5.
More reports from the race course to follow.
Race prep and race start photos/videos recently posted to Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gryphonsolo