Posted by: Helena Smalman-Smith | November 29, 2011

Angus gets an A+

Today started with us having our photos taken by the official photographer and his accomplice who was apparently needed to hold a SECOND flash (quite why they needed either in bright sunlight was beyond us). This took ages, and they took way more pics than we had done at our wedding. I don’t think they found us photogenic – but at least they didn’t ask us to pose for “glamour” shots as they did Atlantic 4 who were after us (and to their credit refused to take their kit off, although they were snapped walking out of of the waves).

Meanwhile, Eric was hard at work repairing the wooden stand for our camping stove which had been broken yesterday when someone (in the crew) stood on it. This widget has now been officially named “the Eric”, and you’ll see photos of it in due course once it has been painted in its new livery.

Next up was a seminar on electrics (power management, Care of the Water Maker advice and so on), and then we finally found time to go out rowing with the aims of testing Angus the Autohelm. It was decidedly rough, but Angus passed with flying colours, holding a good course both into wind and with a following wind. And as H was busy working the settings on him, as well as squeezing out of the back hatch to attach and unattach him), R and Eric rowed, and went for a speed record so far on the way in, reaching the heady speed of 4knots. We have official permission for Eric to row with us during the 6-mile or so Gomera Cup on Friday – as Gemma from Woodvale put it, if you’re not going to win, you might as well cheat.

Our final task before night fell was to programme waypoints into the gps. Tomorrow we have to be interviewed by the Talisker PR people (another crew which has alreayd been interviewed gave us the heads up that we will be asked what luxury we’ll be taking, and R came up with the brilliant answer “each other” – ahhh), our Argos tracking beacon will be fitted and we’ll have our Talisker branding stickers applied – and by then we’ll be frighteningly close to being ready.

Today’s photo is of TVSC (Thames Valley Skiff Club) blades on tour again – thanks to Richard K for pointing out that it apparently didn’t come through when I attached it in a previous blog (poss because I was trying to attach too many which certainly won’t be happening at sea when we have much, much more limited connectivity!). Happy birthday to Emily D by the way.

Also today I got chatting to one of the members of The Corinthians who only arrived the day before yesterday – who was financial adviser to Partners for Change, a company that Helena worked for from 1997-2003. It’s a ridiculously small world. Though one with rather large oceans!



  1. Enjoying your blogs, written in your familiar style, and will be with you every, er, step of the way. Bit worried about souring stuff from Argos though…

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