Phil reports from Imerys Clean Energy:

“The top three of the Class 40s are all in a state of compression as we on Imerys Clean Energy hit light airs, just to the west of V&B and Aina. It’s tricky conditions for us right now. We have the spinnaker up and are trying to make way towards the Cape Verdes, as the others further east gobble up our margin… Hope things will turn in our favour soon… It’s funny how we’ve been dreaming of light airs all week and now we are reminded that less wind is also challenging!

“We are pretty much half way to Brazil, which is unbelievable. I guess we have sailed quite a way in the first week… We’ve averaged around 300 miles per day, which is not bad going for us small, but nimble 40 footers.

“It’s evident how quickly we have sailed south just by what an incredible contrast the weather is down here in the tropics compared to just three days ago further north. Then, I was waking up cold from a sleeping bag in full thermals. Today, I finally took the last of my thermals off before perspiring to oblivion, and we are now in shorts and t-shirts, whilst having to overload on sun cream.  I guess we deserved a bit of a break after several insanely wet days in 30 knots wind.  Funnily enough, just as we move into the tropics, our Jetboil has now randomly started working again (maybe it has just thawed-out?!) which means no more cold freeze dried and – get this – we can actually have a cup of tea after literally DAYS without any.  Although I think ice tea is more appealing right now!

“Next up:  Getting round (or through??) the Cape Verdes… This will definitely not be plain sailing – Phil”