Volvo Ocean Racers are set for a difficult leg between Singapore and Qingdao, China. The course takes them into higher latitudes with lower temperatures and less daylight.
As they move north to China, upwind and in a straight line, the days will get progressively shorter, with another two hours of darkness added to each gruelling day.
Temperatures will also plummet and close attention has been paid to reports from the Clipper Race last year where crews faced freezing wind chill and snow on the deck.
For all the crews, especially those born and brought up in the Mediterranean, the cold conditions and long nights fill them with dread, so the list of demands on the shore crews, who aim to make sailors lives as comfortable as possible, have a prima donna’s feel about them.
More two minute noodles, more hot drinks, more chocolate, a large thermos flask, extra heaters, extra ducting for existing the heating, neoprene face masks and so it goes on.