RMSR 2012 - Half the Fleet Through the Straits of Messina

Below are a few more of my pictures before and after the start of the race yesterday.
As I type half the fleet have made it through the Straits of Messina. At that particular point ARTIE RTFX were in the lead overall - but it is early days yet. Winds ahead are light and everyone knows that anything can happen in light winds, but they are pushing hard.

Click on photos to enlarge

ARTIE RTFX pre start

Since the start of the race yesterday family, friends and more have been avidly following the race via the tracker on the RMSR site. Alot of people have probably wondered how this is actually done. The little device (I assume some kind of GPS system) you can see in the photograph above is attached to every boat  competing. This, ofcourse relays the exact postion of the boat enabling us to follow practically every move they make.  
Things have come a long way since those early Middle Sea Race days when the sailors themselves did alot of their navigation by dead reckoning and nobody really knew when the competitors were going to turn up!