Sea tales from local sailor.
PUBLISHED: 09:20 26 August 2009 | UPDATED: 11:43 10 June 2010
LOCAL sailor, Conrad Humphreys took part last week in the ninth edition of the Archipelago Raid - one of the world s greatest and most extreme orienteering sailing races, in which an international field of teams race through the Stockholm archipelago, Ala
LOCAL sailor, Conrad Humphreys took part last week in the ninth edition of the Archipelago Raid - one of the world's greatest and most extreme orienteering sailing races, in which an international field of teams race through the Stockholm archipelago, Aland islands and Finnish archipelago.
The race is a tough and exhausting test of skill and stamina where complex navigation is made all the more difficult by the effects of sleep deprivation.
The race started at the Conference Centre At Sea on the island of Lidingš outside Stockholm, and passed through the Stockholm archipelago, through the Aland Islands, thence to the archipelago outside Finnish Turku before returning to Lidingš.
The boats are all Formula 18 catamarans, these being very fast 5.5 meter twin-hull craft sailed by two crew.
Here is a taste of the action through the experiences of Humphreys who wrote this as the race drew to a close:
"The previous six days' raiding now seem like a blur, but the blisters on the hands, the bruises on the knees and the broken daggerboards are the evidence of another enduring event. A mixed result overall, we came with high hopes of repeating our 2008 result, where, perhaps, a more conservative approach yielded a strong closing performance. This year we took too many risks and were not on top of our navigation, which resulted in broken daggerboards. To win this event you need to balance the risk. I think we pushed too hard at times. This event is, for me, still the highlight of the sailing calender. It produces amazing friendships between competitors, who are drawn from all over the world to test themselves. It is brilliantly organised by Christine Salen and the Atlant team, who understand how to push the boundaries of sailing and the limits of the sailors.
The real magic of the event is, that over the six days, you are forced to make good with what you have. It's a wonderful metaphor for today's world where we must learn to be more resourceful. Onboard you carry just enough food and spares and if you break something you find a way to fix it.
It is also an event that perfectly complements the ambitions of the Blue Project. It is certainly a quest through nature with every competitor experiencing the breathtaking surroundings of the Archipelago through the power of extreme sport".
Conrad and Ryan, Team Blue 09.