<I>"Entering the North Sea was just like arriving in the street where I live!"</I> said Klaus-Dieter PETERSON today from his Nordsee 82 sloop Vita Bella, sweeping southeastward at 9-10 knots under spinnaker.
"Passing Fair Isle was hard,"
said Klaus-Dieter, "the wind fell light, the tidal currents are fierce, and the wave motion there pretty uncomfortable. But within an hour and a half we were through."
How's life on board? Not bad, by the sound of it. Lunch was spaghetti bolognese with meat, potatoes and green beans. "It's a great feeling to be in home waters again,"
said Klaus-Dieter, "if the wind holds we could make Cuxhaven by Thursday evening."
Ahead of Vita Bella leading the pack almost neck and neck, are two boats representing the USA - Snow Lion (Lawrence HUNTINGTON, commodore of the New York Yacht Club) and Tempest (Swedish-registered and chartered by skipper Arthur BUGS BAER (New York Yacht Club and Royal Yacht Squadron) with Karl DEVENDER and William DUNN. The computer predictions for an arrival early Thursday morning could be bettered by at least one of these two which might make it late Wednesday if their present pace holds up.
Next expected at Fair Isle is Albatros, the Swan 62 sailed by Manfred KERSTAN. Many boats are still in the Atlantic, making steady progress but contending with head winds. Some yachts have more than 1,000 miles to go before Fair Isle including the 150-foot giant Dutch Windrose skippered by Gerry DIJKSTRA. On the same latitude is Salute, one of two or more yachts which may be awarded redress by the International Jury for standing by the yacht Monsun when it sank earlier in the race (all the Monsun crew are now safely back in Germany). The race computer predicts an arrival time for Windrose late on July 10.
Follow the progress of all the Competitors on the event website at the address below.