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Whitbread Log: Leg 3,
Fremantle to Sydney
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  My socks stink so bad I can't stand them already, and I got 4 hours sleep in the first 24 hours . . .
Day 2 - Dec. 14, 1997

0815 GMT
35° 03'S, 116° 41'E

Miles to Sydney: 1,869

Place: 1st; distance ahead of 2nd-place boat: 0.8 mile

From: Paul Cayard, skipper EF Language

We are right back where we left off on leg two. My sleeping bag got soaked last night because of a pinhole leak in the water ballast tank right next to me. But that was just the bottom half of Rudi [Mark Rudiger] and my sleeping bag. So, to finish it off, the guys dropped it in the bilge in a tack.

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I am not looking forward to sleeping in that thing. My socks stink so bad I can't stand them already, and I got 4 hours sleep in the first 24 hours, even after Rudi and I discussed not getting burned out in the first twenty four hours. My nice dry, clean smelling bed in Fremantle seems so far away not to mention my bed in San Francisco.

Anyway, we are doing what we are here to do — race this sailboat. So far so good, despite a blown ballast tank last night. This morning we led around Cape Leeuwin, the southwest corner of Australia, albeit a small margin over Toshiba.

The whole fleet was quite compact, all within two miles. As we sailed away from the point, the fleet split in two. Toshiba, Chessie [with AmericaOne's John Kostecki on board], Swedish Match, and Merit went offshore. Kvaerner and Silk Cut were going inshore. Since they are 1 and 3 in the regatta, we thought we would stay near them, since we did not expect anything major to happen.

Swedish Match and Merit gained a lot while Toshiba and Chessie did not. We gained on Kvaerner and Silk. So now Swedish is leading by a half mile over us and Merit is behind us by half a mile.

Swedish is very fast up wind in this breeze: 20 knots. Merit is not, but going the right way brought her to the front for now.

It has been fairly rough, beating into rather small, short seas, slamming occasionally, nothing too bad though. We are tacking quite a bit, which is bad for the sleeping program as everyone has to wake up and shift himself and the cargo (food, spares, etc.) for each tack. We have been tacking on average every hour since rounding Leeuwin.

The outlook is for the wind to slowly go to the northeast over the next 48 hours. This should set us up for a port tack fetch toward Bass Straight by Tuesday. So far, it doesn't look like we are going to be setting any records for getting to Sydney on this leg.

Paul Cayard

Leg 3 positions at 1200 GMT today:
  1. EF Language (P. Cayard, skipper)
  2. Swedish Match
  3. Merit Cup
  4. Toshiba
  5. Silk Cut
  6. BrunelSunergy
  7. EF Education
  8. Chessie Racing (J. Kostecki, tactician)
  9. Innovation Kvaerner
* Aggregate points total, including points scored for the first and second legs and points for the third leg according to current positions.

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