Stromboli, Aeolian Islands and the approach to Palermo

Northeast of Palermo, Tuesday, October 21st, 2014, 12:00.

Team OPTIMUM is back in contention with the leading boats in class 2 after a stellar performance by the crew during the last 36 hours. Actually, OPTIMUM 3-ASPIDA-SAXOBANK is the 7th boat in the race track out of a fleet of 122 that started on Saturday. The light winds demanded patience and persistence and the Optimum crew proved that they had plenty in the bag since they managed to catch up a 15-mile deficit and overtake all the class 2 yachts bar two, Mascalzone Latino and Contakerous.


“As it got dark on Sunday we had to settle with the idea that we would not get to eat nothing bar energy bars for dinner. No fingers were pointed towards anyone concerning the purchase of the wrong gas canisters, and we joked about eating our clothes, each other, etc. Approaching Stromboli, we got mobile connection once again, and through the race tracker system we learned that the leading boats had slowed considerably. Our racing instincts, fed our appetite, and we decided to hold the southernmost route once round Stromboli. So we did, gybed and dived hard south toward the first of the Aeolian islands. The move paid off and by 15:00 Monday we left to port the last of the Aeolian Island complex and continued to bet on being south of the rhumb line. Before it got dark again we could see the leading boats and we concentrated even more to get into the mix. The night was characterized by drifting conditions and OPTIMUM 3 with her fair hull lines excelled and at sunrise we had managed to overpass B2 and Black Pearl and hold 3rd on the water in class 2. Crew morale is on a high due to our strong position in the race so far but more importantly because the technical minds on board altered the nose needle of our gas stove to be able to mount the available gas canisters. That move translated to a serious pasta night that boosted performance to unprecedented levels” suggests loyal Optimum trimmer Kostas Makridis.


We are now heading W to round Capo St. Vito and getting ready to face force 7-8 winds from NW that will hopefully allow us to “fly” fast all the way to Malta. Please, stay tuned…