I will write more once my laptop turns up with Julie in a few days but here is a quick precis of the race so far.
There was a huge send off from La Rochelle with big crowds lining the walls at the exit from the dock and loads of spectator boats helicopters etc.
The race itself got off to a bad start with a misunderstanding of where the first mark was, and a large percentage of the fleet having to return a few miles to the correct one. After this there was a good spinnaker blast in increasing winds down to finisterre, with the winds ranging from 25 to 35 knots for the corner and a good way down the portugese coast, followed by much lighter and more variable breeze down to Madeira where I had 20-25knots all along the edge of island until 4 miles from the finish where it went to nothing at the flick of a switch!!!! I then spent a couple of hours drifting the last bit.
Compared with some the boat and me survived pretty well, I have quite a number of minor jobs to do, but nothing really major.
More detailed account to follow soon.