Starting to gear up for the next race: Down East Challenge. This is a small, destination race starting in Marblehead, MA and finishing at the Rockland, Maine break wall, about 130 nautical miles. If we get the prevailing breeze out of the SW, it's a down wind sled run.
The last time I did this race in 2008, Jeroboam had an amazing run across the Gulf of Maine. There was a six hour period when boat speeds averaged around 8.3 knots, an intense clip as it was all hand steering and I was still getting used to flying an asym.
Much of my cruising gear and boat luxuries are back on board and I probably won't have time to jettison it prior to the race so I'll be sailing a little heavier than I was last month. I will take the time to give the bottom a thorough scrub as there will no doubt be some growth down there since the last scrub on Bermuda over a month ago.
There's some terrific competition entered so far in the single handed division, all of whom are Bermuda 1-2 alumni and most of whom were entered in this year's running of that race, including two compatriots from Class 4, Bluebird and Panacea. This is going to be great!