On Monday morning the whole fleet was separated by 16nm. Just 6 hours later the figure had grown to 33nm and this morning the leading yacht had pulled 44nm ahead of last place.
With just over an hour until the next update from the fleet, we are waiting to see if the bold move from Team Save the Children produces results. If the risk pays off, any mileage gained would provide a valuable psychological boost and put pressure on the teams ahead of them.
Back at the head of the fleet after two days of racing, BP Explorer is now only 5nm behind leaders, Spirit of Sark. Not far behind them, the 6-strong chasing pack consisting of third to eighth place is spread across just 8nm of water and the battle at the tail end of the fleet is also separated by 8nm. The last four yachts are fighting hard in the knowledge that there is still over 5,800nm to go until Buenos Aires.
For Charlie GREENER, the "sudden isolation from the supporter boats and indeed the rest of the fleet after [they] rounded the Needles"
has brought home the reality of what his team mate on board VAIO, Hugh SUTHERLAND, has described as "an amazing start to the great adventure."
Another of VAIO's crew, Ben BEASLEY, described conditions on the foredeck during the rough stuff, which may explain the seasickness that seems to have struck across the fleet:
"One minute you are sitting on the deck, the next you're clinging on for dear life with your legs flying horizontally behind you whilst a ton of water is poured over you!"
Although Ben continued to say that he "worryingly found the whole experience very exciting!"
The seasickness has prompted some interesting comments and descriptions in the teams' Daily Logs. VAIO's skipper, Amedeo, said to his crew this morning: "You guys are great, but disgusting!"
Greig TAYLOR reported from SAIC La Jolla that while "50% of the crew were wiped out yesterday … at least the large seas and waves keep washing the decks for us!"
For more graphic descriptions of living with seasickness on a racing yacht read the Daily Logs. It may not sound pretty, but this is the reality of the Challenge the teams are facing - life on board is not glamorous and Crew Volunteers have many more tests ahead of them.
However, the reports of bouncing dinners have been followed by upbeat assurances that the routine of life on board has started to kick in after the enthralling first chapter through the English Channel and round the North West tip of France. With their noses pointing towards South America, the tone of the logs are increasingly positive.
For example, Steve GUSH on board Imagine It. Done. notes that the crew are becoming accustomed to the watch system that structures life on a racing yacht:
"As I write this the weather has calmed down and the sun is out, gradually people are recovering from various degrees of seasickness and we are starting to get into our pattern of life."
With thousands of miles to go, slipping into the daily framework structured by being 'on watch' or 'off watch' will be a crucial component of consistent performance.
Full position reports are available on the event website at the address below.