Day 13, 27 December
The wind has picked up for the Row4Ocean team with the team experiencing feisty conditions nearly a thousand miles offshore in the Atlantic Ocean. The tail wind and surfing conditions are enhancing their speed in their quest to break world records, and in doing so raise the awareness for plastic in our oceans. On Day 13 of the 2305nm row from Dakar, Senegal to Paramaribo, Suriname, the four-man team was approximately 1340nm from the finish. The team has been averaging over 70 miles a day, and with their pace set to increase, they are on course to break the outright average speed world record for this route.
“We have about 15-20 knots of wind from a better wind direction and more significantly a sizeable sea state of close to 2.5 metres, which adds up to waves that we can sometimes surf down,” commented Patrick. “We are posting much better daily average speed than in the flat seas experienced before. This extra speed is bringing a lot of happiness to the team. Our steering has been set for using minimum power consumption but we have reset that to give us a more aggressive steering mode for these bigger seas to stay perpendicular so that we do not broach.
We have had our Christmas Cake which we took with us, and it was a very welcome change to our staple diet of freeze dried food and biltong! On Christmas Day we took a slightly bigger break and all ate our food together but there were no gifts, we had no weigh allowance for presents. We did get messages from our families and friends on Christmas Day, and we really appreciated that and all the support we are getting. This is a memorable Christmas for us but we could not help imagining what it would be like to sit in that nice cozy environment with an iPad plugged into the electricity. For Row4Ocean we are still in ‘Apollo XIII mode’ – conserving every bit of power.”