Well it looks like midnight to around 10 AM tomorrow will be the worst of it. I've studied all the weather data and have a plan in place for dealing with it so hopefully nothing breaks and I get through it alright. Everything is just about ready to go on board though I have a few more things to do on deck before the winds really pipe up so I'll make this post brief.
A fellow competitor in Bermuda 1-2 once wrote that if you're going to go offshore, your boat needs to be able to take 50 knots of breeze. I believe mine can but I suppose I won't know 'til I try. Clearly the goal is not to break anything so I'll be taking it easy and playing it safe. I aint racing afterall.
To Tom Vander Salm's question of adding wind vane steering before OSTAR, it's out of the budget so the best I can do is sort out the issues on my current autopilot, of which I have some ideas. It's been steering a steady course for 24 hours now so that's a good sign.
I heard that today may be the big one for Jeff & Jody - good luck!