Leg 5, Race 7 Day 15, 16th March

Morning watch was busy. We had the Yankee 2 up and poled out then dropped it almost immediately as the wind went through a switch, in favour of the Yankee 1 on a reach. Almost as soon as we'd done it the wind changed again – sod's law – but instead of reacting I suggested we “Do a Dudin” and wait for 10 mins (on average the time it would take him to roll and smoke a ciggie while pondering the next move!) In the end the wind steadied and we ran with the Y1 for the rest of the day. The sun came out to join us this morning and the temperature rose with it. The mood is much lighter today as we all are getting used to life on board AD (after Dudin) and are learning to accept that we need to get on with it in his absence. Having checked the Y2 as we dropped it, we found lots of little nicks in the sail so I set a team of people onto repairing it while I was off-watch – keeping an eye on the work and showing them the next stage of the repairs. We continued all through the day and into the evening.

Tom and Charlie were on mother-watch today. It was a complete re-run of their mother-watch in leg 1 – a day of mayhem and friendly bickering which ended in a huge custard powder fight and both of them looking like snowmen! Despite that we had great food all day – the best of which was freshly baked rolls at lunchtime with grated cheese and butter! A rare treat and one we all appreciated!

As the winds were still lighter Tom took the opportunity to go up the mast to make some running repairs late afternoon. Nothing unusual except it gave him the chance to put the new 'mast monkey' back-pack to use. Piers had purchased it in Qingdao – it was a kiddies Mickey Mouse rucksack. It was slightly bizarre to see it going up an 80ft mast in the middle of the Pacific Ocean – but made us smile all the same.