It’s been just over ten days since the race crew that came out to Antigua departed. We had a very good couple of days on the water looking at some new sails that we will use on the Caribbean 600 race at the end of February. Also we had a good systems, safety and general gear check and created a list of goals for the next few weeks.
Dorade is in good condition and we were all pretty happy with things in general. Bush and I had a very rough trip down from the BVI and only arrived in Antigua just before the race team so I was keen to do a full rig check before we did any more sailing. A winch had torn itself clean off the mast whilst smashing through big waves and at the time I was concerned about the rig due to the sudden bang but fortunately everything checked out fine.
The winches are now attached much more permanently and I am confident this wont be happening again any time soon. We also worked on our up wind sailing configurations which is something we have touched on many times but feel that we can still learn more and get better at. The seas get a lot bigger in the Caribbean Sea than anywhere we have race so far so we need to get our heads around this for the 600 race which is going to be tough for us with our low free board and short water line.
As per usual there is the endless varnish and paint work jobs going on, although I would be happier sometimes on a boat with no varnish the end result is always worth it. The boys have been working on the interior for almost a week now. Lots of areas had to be taken back to bare wood, re sealed and now we are building up four coats. Normally the focus is on deck but the time had definitely come for some TLC down bellow.
So seeing as the interior is a war zone of dust, chemicals and wet paint I am concentrating on deck for the moment. Just over a month to go before the team are back out and we are hitting the start line in the next big race and something new in the Dorade history book.