Peter Bowker, navigator aboard the 1974 winner Merrythought, offers his sometimes unusual strateties.
- Ensure that Lady Luck is one of your crew. Use witchcraft. Rubbing chicken bones together with suitable incantations might work.
- Pick a good boat and ensure you sail with a good crew who know the boat.
- Ensure the skipper, the watch captains, and navigator have studied the Gulf Stream satellite photos and have a plan of action before you leave Newport. Negotiating the Stream is of course the crucial part of this race. Get it right and you can be on the prize list. Get it wrong and youre toast!
- If conditions change during the course of the race, especially when approaching the Stream, don't be afraid to wake people up for a tactical discussion. As a navigator I have had serious qualms when left to my own devices when it came to making strategic and tactical decisions.