We’re Off!

Ahoy Boatbloggers!

At 1200 on Saturday, they sounded the starting signal for The World ARC 2020 St Lucia to St Lucia, and we were off. It was a pretty damp and squally start to the whole thing - a bit like the Solent but with palm trees. But at least when it rains, it’s warm rain.

Race Start

The reason you can see so many boats and they are so far away is because we’re in our usual tactical position. The back. Fools them every time.

Now - an explanation. Those of you following us on the tracker will no doubt be very impressed with our amazing high speeds, of anywhere between eight and ten knots. “They must be among the leaders,” you will be thinking. “If only they were going in the right direction.”

Perhaps you suspect we have some cunning Ben Ainslie style plan; head south then pick up a favourable current, or an unsuspected wind, and then nip in at the front right on the finish line to rapturous applause. 

Alas, dear reader, the truth is far more mundane. 

Our Voyage Around The World was all going really well. Right up until the first day. Well - to be precise, the first second of the first minute of the first hour of the first day of the first leg of our first circumnavigation. 

It was just as we came to cast off our lines to go out into the anchorage ready for the start the next day, that we found one of our engines wasn’t working. The landlubbers amongst you might think, they’ve got two engines - why don’t they just use the spare? But unfortunately in a catamaran it’s not that simple. If you only have one engine you just keep going round in circles. We want to go round the world, not just round the bay forty three times. 

So...we needed to get it fixed - and fast. The rally was going to begin in less than 24 hours! 

We found St Lucia’s number one engineer, and it wasn’t long before we had a diagnosis; a duff MDI unit. The offending item It doesn’t matter if you haven’t got the foggiest idea what one of those is. All you need to know is that the engine won’t work without it. In an emergency you can climb down into the engine compartment and hot wire it with bit of old cable, but you can’t go round the world doing that every time you come into port.  The only solution was to get a new one. 

But unfortunately It turned out that in the whole of St Lucia there were no Mega Dodgy Interface units. Everyone else with a Volvo engine had already taken them. It’s a common fault. But what was worse is that It might take weeks for one to be delivered. It looked like we weren’t going to be able to start - a bit like our engine. As soon as Ju had stopped wailing and thumping the cushion, we sprang into action. Many phone calls and emails later, at last we tracked one down in Grenada. So that is where we went. At Sea And hopefully they can fit it first thing on Monday morning. We will be sat on their doorstep at eight when they open. 
And then - fingers crossed - we can start heading in the right direction.  Considering it’s all gone a bit Pete Tong, having to divert to Grenada is not the worst thing that has ever happened to us. Divert to Grenada To Santa Marta and Beyond!

Ju & Lyn

4 thoughts on “We’re Off!”

  1. WOW! Perseverance! Good for you guys. Stay safe, have fun and will be following you. Call if you need anything! HA HA. Carol and Paul, s/v Odysseus (sold in 2017)

  2. When I saw where you were headed on the tracker, even I figured it wasn’t the best tactic! Hope you get it fixed in Grenada and if not, just stay with Wally and Sally and go round the world in your head. Stay safe xx

  3. Great blog as usual !!
    Good luck tomorrow and hope new bit for the engine goes well .
    May the force be with you to boldly go on westward bound !

  4. OMG trust you two to do this circumnavigation differently to everyone else!!! Hope Monday goes as planned. Chin up and don’t let the buggers get you down. Safe sail x

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