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19 January 2005, 01:30 pm
Less Than 24 Hours To Go!
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2004/2005 Global Challenge
Wellington, New Zealand

At this morning's poll, Team Stelmar reported having less than 180 miles to go - which should mean they reach Wellington within the next 24 hours, assuming they have favourable winds for the rest of their passage.
At the moment, they seem to have just that, with wind speeds of 27 knots from the southwest, allowing the team to maintain speeds between 8-9 knots and head straight for their destination.

The team writes, 'Most of the afternoon and into the evening we have had relatively strong winds and big seas.

'The sea has been particularly precarious throwing large waves over the bow and beam, the only warning being a shout from a team member 'wave - hold on' and everyone holds on tight. Perhaps this can be seen as a farewell party from the seas of the South Pacific Ocean.

'Our progress towards Wellington is steady and all thoughts are now on crossing the finish line, hopefully in a little under 24 hours time. See you then!'

Skipper Clive COSBY pays tribute to the tenacity and determination of his crew, who together have sailed nearly 9500 miles and spent over 52 days at sea. Clive writes, 'after the drama of the past seven weeks it is a strong, resolute team that looks forward to the rest of the race.'

Preparations are underway in Wellington to make sure the team get the welcome they deserve - and no doubt the dock will be thronged with friends, family, sponsors, supporters and of course, crew-member Tim JOHNSTON, when they get in.

The operation on Tim's broken arm was a success, and although he would have liked to rejoin the yacht in Wellington he's been advised that with his arm in such a weak state, another Southern Ocean leg could prove risky. No doubt this is disappointing for Tim and his team-mates, but he will be rejoining them for the start of Leg 5 in Cape Town.

Crewmember Karen SMITH, who was also unable to complete Leg 2, has been given a clean bill of health and will be rejoining the team for the Wellington to Sydney leg.

Imagine It. Done. crewmember John MASTERS is now out of hospital and is staying with relatives on South Island to recuperate, so he won't be rejoining the yacht just yet, but hopes to be back onboard in due course.

Meanwhile, Team Save the Children's Sarah 'Squeaky' RAYMOND has been working hard to recover from her broken shoulder after she was hit by a car in Buenos Aires. She was determined to rejoin the yacht for Leg 3 however, because of the severity of her injury, doctors have advised against this. Although disappointed, Sarah is looking forward to rejoining her team in Cape Town for Leg 5.
Event Media (As Amended by ISAF)
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