Come aboard as we have a little bit of fun while sailing through the doldrums in Leg 5 of the 2019-2020 Clipper Round the World Race.

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It is now race day 9, days at sea 10, and we are in the midst of the motoring doldrums corridor. What better way to pass the time while motoring along in zero wind than to have fun with our competition while they are stuck in a wind hole. They had already finished their 36 hours of motoring.

Our skipper has a wicked sense of humor and decided to “get back” at our fellow competitor Qingdao for a prank they pulled in Leg 4 of the Clipper Race. During that race, it was the last day of racing, with spinnakers up and wind abaft the beam. They slowly passed our team and in a move of passive aggressiveness they hoisted their storm jib on the forestay. This is a sail normally reserved for wind speeds above 45 knots, not the 12 knots they were currently sailing in.

We decided to return the favor this leg, as me motored past.

Our skipper with his arms spread wide on the starboard bow.

As we finished our motoring the wind would build and we had excellent sailing as we went between the island of New Ireland and the Tanga Islands, both island chains are part of Papua New Guinea.

The wind would be short lived and the next morning we found ourselves in less than 2 knots of wind. I used the boat pole as a makeshift spinnaker pole to hold the clew of the windseeker out, hoping to keep the sail inflated.

Holding the clew of the windseeker out in little to no wind. Photo credit Sophie Owles.

It actually worked! We got the boat moving and once we had consistent 8 knots of apparent wind we hoisted the yankee head sail. The wind would build and we were off sailing again!

Next stop? The Equator!

Join me next week to witness the equator crossing and King Neptune’s court.

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