With a huge sigh of relief we got moving again at 7:54pm … after the morale had sunk to its lowest since the start of the succession of stop- and-go endured since we reached the first patch of calms in the lee of Etna at 9:27am.

We started the day quite high as our choice to aim for the catabatic winds supposedly flowing down the Catania Valley in the late hours of the night seemed to have worked well, allowing us to catch up somehow with the leaders of our class. We watched gleefully the boats to our right slow down and then hit the calms first.

But then what next ?
How could we avoid the calms to come ?
Right or left ?
Keep to the coast of Sicily or aim for the possibly more stable breeze off the coast of Italy ?

The two looking quite equivalent, we chose to stick to the left.

Alas (I skip here a few episodes – more than 10 hours) we finally discovered that the boats who had chosen the right side had done much better than us. And the morale further dropped when we saw the boats both on our right and our left start gathering speed while we remained becalmed in the middle !

That’s just how frustrating racing in light winds can be …

From the crew of JIVARO, well rested and fed owing to our shore support, and eager to fight back !

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