The countdown clock that started 1,563 days ago when I hit the bricks off of Beavertail has very nearly wound down. There are 50 days left between now and the start of the 2018 Route du Rhum. The boat sits in England, unloaded from the freighter that carried her across the pond, fully prepped and ready to go. The last items on the nearly endless lists of enhancements, modifications, repairs and refits has been scratched off. Piles of paperwork have been submitted to the race organizers and logistics have been sorted across three countries for everything from transport to sleeping to flu shots.
I am getting nervous, and excited. I rationally know that both boat and sailor have never been better prepared for this challenge, but it’s still a distance between here and the start line and an even longer distance between the start line and Guadeloupe. With the boat slumbering in the UK, I am spending the time working out and studying the weather and routing. I worry about hurricanes that might slam into Guadeloupe, and study Siberian ice pack stats in an effort to see if the Azores high might remain further north this November and result in the southerly routing that will favor Dragon in the race.
With 50 days left, the communication plan is also coming into focus. Today is the launch of www.dragonoceanracing.com. The website joins Dragon’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages as a vehicle for some of the longer form pieces I would like to be able to share from out there. I have some fun stuff planned for those that might want to come along for the adventure, so I hope you will check in. The Facebook page will have links to the site, as well as the tracker once the race is underway.