Forest Gump once wisely said: "life is like a box of chocolate, you never know what you're gonna get." That could never be more true than today. Except our chocolate got squished as well; it's still good, we still love it, but it's just been a bit sticky and messy the last 24hours. Last night, as we happily made our way South West, we got caught under our own personal rain cloud that sucked every ounce of wind. Our "parade" was both literally and figuratively rained on. By morning, we were 90 miles behind Mapfre, and by 1pm, we were another 49 miles behind. Unsure if "gutted" gives the best description of the mood of all of us on board-- but it felt like we had all been stabbed in the stomach.
"It's frustrating," Abby said. "It's hard because you're sailing the boat fast and really well, but sometimes you just get unlucky. And we got unlucky."
We all love to sail fast; sailing slow is like nails on a chalkboard for Annie. But sometimes you can't help but sail slow because you're missing the key ingredient: wind. The hardest part is, we base our plan around getting the wind-- we're sailing smart—and so it’s tough when the wind doesn't do its job and show up.
"We have no reason we should not be with the pack," Sally said. "We've proved that we can sail amongst the pack. We've just had some bad luck."
"I'm staying in the moment," Sally continued. "Yes, it sucks now, but it means focusing on what conditions we have now-- reading and watching the clouds, not fast forwarding too far; looking at what we have in front of us and sailing with that."
This morning, as we attempted to gybe South, West, and East-- anywhere but our wind hole!-- the comments began flooding in. "Go go go girls! Sweden is proud of you!" "Keep the faith. All good things come to those who wait! Sail hard and fast when it comes." "Keep using that killer instinct that got you on the team to start with! You're doing so well! Your mentor would be proud of you!
We're all proud of you!" "You are in the race of your lives! Constant learning and improvement, stay focused, always looking for your opportunities. Have fun and enjoy the ride. We love ya'll no matter what.... WE BELIEVE! Your time is coming." "In the darkest mines you find the brightest diamonds."
And, our favorite: "Thank you for keeping on fighting - Keep Fighting On"-- Magnus
We are fighting. We are determined. We are focused. Yes, today was not easy, but we did not allow ourselves to slow down-- we sailed with the conditions given and sailed at 100% performance.
"We have to think long term and I'm used to 15 minute match races," Annie said. "But I've also come back from 1.5 leg loss in a 2 leg race, to win. It takes concentration and focus, and we have that. I have faith in us."
So, as I've said before: don't rule us out. Don't expect anything from the best from us. Don't stop believin'. There is still thousands of miles left, and with a newly added "Ice Gate" in the Southern Ocean, the next couple of days racing may get even closer. We are fighting and that's the most important part. After all, who knows what chocolates we'll have tomorrow...
We work hard, we sail hard, we are TEAM SCA. (www.teamsca.com)