And They’re Off!

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The 184-boat Newport Bermuda fleet is on its way under sunny skies and light westerlies. To follow the fleet in real-time as it makes its way across the Gulf Stream and the rest of the 600-plus-mile course, click here.

For a look at some of the fleet at the start, check out the video below.

The first day and a half of racing has been pleasant, but light at times, especially during the firstnight. The following report is from Star Chaser, in the St. David’s Light Division, at midday Saturday:

Saturday 1200 boat time. 565 nm to go. Boat speed 2.6kt, Speed over ground 3.3kt: It has been a very interesting last 24 hours, with about everything that you could imagine (not quite everything you’d want though!). After our great start, we had some really good sailing: on the wind, but not quite on the nose, doing good speeds (high 9s) and generally having a fantastic time. We had a little try out with the screamer (a loose luffed colorful and thin sail that we can sail fairly high with) but quickly concluded it was not what we needed….The night went on with sail changes, good winds, no wind, zero boat speed (Nooooooo!), tiptoeing around the boat so as not to disturb the balance and speed when we slowly started to get going again. Just before dawn we got the asym up and did some wicked sailing into the dawn….Back down just before breakfast and watch change at 6 because of too little wind and since then we’ve had the No 2 up again. The wind keeps on coming and going…”

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