Day 1: Getting ready for the challenge ahead

The team are on the delivery to Land's End, the current routing looks like a fast record sail ahead, Lizzy updates us from the first night onboard

"We’ve had great conditions for our first night at sea onboard Artemis Ocean Racing II. Making it out of the Needles on one long tack was a pleasant luxury – as it meant we could conserve some energy without the need to do lots of manoeuvres onboard! Overnight we have been steadily making our way west towards Land’s End – and the start of the Length of Britain Challenge – at around 12-17 knots and a smooth sea state. Perfect conditions to get back into sailing this 60-foot boat before the breeze really picks up this afternoon.

I’m very excited to be onboard for this record, as racing the clock rather than a fleet of boats is a fresh challenge for me. It is also my first circumnavigation of Britain, so I get to tick two things off at once!  Having been on standby since the beginning of September, we have been watching the weather for the past few weeks waiting for a low-pressure system to come through and propel us downwind towards John O’Groats in Scotland. Timing is critical to a challenge like this – we actually had to delay our start by 5 or 6 hours to avoid running into 45-knot winds at the tip of Scotland!

With the high winds forecast, getting a restful sleep is very important during this intense record attempt, as the actual record distance should be completed in about 1 day 12 hours while we will be at sea for a total of 6 days. This will mean we will be working all the time onboard to sail as fast as we can. To know just how well we are sleeping, we are going to be tracking our sleep patterns with wearable technology in the form of a smartwatch.

Right now we’re sailing along right in time with our routing - the fastest route calculated by our navigation software, taking into account the wind and currents – and so you should spot us at Lands End around 14.00 today!"


lucy harwood