The Maiden Factor Blog

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Day 8 – Happy Birthday Heather!

By Sharon Ferris-Choat

Our beautiful birthday girl Heather woke up for her midnight watch blinded by her name in fairy lights, a happy birthday sign and yummy nibbles for her midnight to 0400 watch. She has just finished her next watch, visiting the hair and nail salon in the front cockpit, followed by birthday cake, our best signing, card and present. She’s only halfway through her birthday so anything could happen…!

We are on port for the first time in 8 days, excluding our tiny gybe yesterday hoping to have a better angle to the mark and it was not, so we went back on starboard (starboard is when the wind comes over the right side of the boat and port is when it’s on the left).

l am really enjoying navigation. We are on a delivery but I am always racing our mates on the polar chart while using Predictwind. We have a low pressure system between us and the Azores. We want to be as SE as possible on this strong wind to be in good sailing/surfing conditions. We nailed the gybe time at first light this morning, only to meet the rain with the front 10 mins later, just enough time for everyone to get wet weather gear on and meet the new wind ready and on course again. The wind built so we put in a reef to stop our brand new mainsail from being crush at the clew. Hadley has changed the reefing lines at the end of the boom, so the mainsail will just fold down nicely. It’s port tack all the 632nm to Horta, Faial Island at the Azores.

Hadley on the boom

We have done well over the last few days and instead of 5 days of strong wind we have only 2.5 now! We are pushing for speed all the time as we have amazing sailing conditions at the moment and until sunset tomorrow. Every mile we take now it a gift compared to making that same mile in rough seas.

So from a happy birthday boat to everyone else celebrating their birthday today, happy Birthday!