Vendee Globe | dag 2

Här har vi lite blandade klipp från senaste dygnet…

Jag vet inte om ni har koll, men det har vatt ett helvetiskt dygn för seglarna i Vendee Globe. Hugo Boss har strukturella skador i skrovet, Aquarelle, Groupe Bel och DCNS har mastat av och ytterligare ett par båtar är på väg tillbaka för reparationer. Temenos och Foncia har startat om Cheminees Poujoulat har precis fått ett nytt peke och är snart på gång igen.

Ett gäng på 6 båtar har ryckt efter frontpassage och rundning av Cap Finisterre (tracker). Nu blir det åka av.

1- Loïck Peyron (FRA), Gitana Eighty, 23197 miles to finish.
2- Jean Pierre Dick (FRA), Paprec-Virbac +1.5 miles.
3- Roland Jourdain (FRA), Veolia Environnement +3.1 miles.
4- Vincent Riou (FRA), PRB + 7.7 miles.
5- Sébastien Josse (FRA), BT, + 12 miles.
6- Armel Le Cléac (FRA), Brit Air, + 12.3 miles.

Selected international:
8- Mike Golding (GBR), ECOVER 3, + 46.1 miles
12- Dee Caffari (GBR), AVIVA, + 61.8 miles.
13- Sam Davies (GBR), ROXY, + 66.6 miles.
14- Brian Thompson (GBR), Bahrain Team Pindar, +76.8 miles
16- Steve White (GBR), Toe in the Water + 109.7 miles.
18- Dominique Wavre (SUI), Temenos II, + 143.6 miles.
19- Jonny Malbon (GBR), Artemis, + 162.7 miles.
20- Unai Basurko (ESP) + 163.4 miles.
21- Rich Wilson (USA), Great American III + 179.3 miles.

After a battering by winds which gusted to over 50 knots and big confused seas on the second night of racing, Jean Pierre Dick on Paprec-Virbac 2 lead the Vendée Globe fleet out of the stormy weather, past Cape Finisterre this morning as speeds accelerated in the favourable conditions. !

Making around 13-15 knots heading south west off the Portuguese coast this afternoon spurred by 15-20 knot winds Loïck Peyron’s Gitana Eighty had overhauled Paprec-Virbac 2 by a matter of just 1.5 miles, leading a small breakaway group of six which have gained a jump of more than 20 miles. Since Sunday’s start in Les Sables d’Olonne, nine of the record fleet of 30 IMOCA Open 60’s have returned, or are returning to Vendée port. Alex Thomson’s British boat Hugo Boss suffered structural cracking to the port side of the hull. His boat was taking water until he started his return to Les Sables d’Olonne where he is expected to arrive early Wednesday morning. The ingress reduced when loads on the hull reduced. Two skippers have restarted, Switzerland’s Dominique Wavre on Temenos 2 left again on Sunday night and has made up to 18th place. Of the three which sustained broken masts Groupe Bel (Kito de Pavant) and Marc Thiercelin’s DCNS have officially retired from racing. After fixing his engine problems Michel Desjoyeaux (Foncia) returned to the race course early this morning, and this afternoon was more than 400 miles from the leaders.

Off to a rough beginning…

The pace at the front of the Vendée Globe fleet changed up a gear today as more favourable NW’ly winds eased the leading pack clear of Cape Finisterre. Chasing the aftermath of a cold front which hit them during Monday evening, the leading group have had a little more wind than the chasing group and a split of about 20 miles has opened up. After surviving the tough second night, it has been a day to maximise sail area, press hard and clean up any problems, get some rest and build a racing rhythm. Barcelona Race winner Jean Pierre Dick held a slender lead through the morning, while Loïck Peyron (Gitana Eighty) – who stayed about 30 miles further inshore at Finisterre has emerged this afternoon with a small lead of 1.5 miles over Dick. The leading pack, comprising Gitana Eighty, Paprec-Virbac 2, Veolia Environnement, PRB, BT and Brit Air have just 12.3 miles between them after just over 48 hours of racing. Paprec-Virbac 2 has erred towards a slightly more westerly position. While Britain’s Mike Golding on Ecover 3 is the top international skipper and now lies eighth, compatriot Alex Thomson is due back in Les Sables d’Olonne on Wednesday morning after sustaining a hull crack which was letting in water. Thomson explained to his shore team that an earlier problem with a ballast tank had leaked more than 1500 litres of water. Only when he was mopping up that problem, and after the worst of the winds had blown through did he realise that a crack in the port side of the hull, between the aft keel box and a bulkhead, was letting in water. After seeing winds peak at 42 knots, Thomson told his shore unit that the winds had settled to between 25-30 knots, when he crashed off a wave. The damage is said to be ‘localised’. British pair Sam Davies (ROXY) and Dee Caffari (AVIVA), the race’s only women skippers, lie in 12th and 13th places respectively, just 4.8 miles apart. After re-starting on Sunday evening Switzerland’s Dominique Wavre continues to climb progressively with Temenos II and had made up to 18th place. Rich Wilson (USA) reported he had sustained a bruised back when he was thrown across the cabin of his Great American III and has been trying not to strain it, while Canada’s Derek Hatfield is due back into Les Sables d’Olonne this afternoon to make repairs to his electrics. He reported that he had lost his wind generator clean off the back of his boat, Algimouss Spirit of Canada, in the stormy conditions.

Voices at sea…

Dee Caffari (AVIVA): “The first 48 hours have been really hard on the boat and on me both physically and emotionally. So it is really nice to be in better conditions and a nicer sea state. I can a ctually feel like I can start living again. My top score I saw was 48 knots but I think I may have stopped looking at that point. It was not the most pleasant but we got through it. The start was awesome. We were in the right place at the right time. The boat just wanted to get going and we just headed off into the horrible weather and so we are really happy. I did have a few setbacks as the front came through and I lost some valuable miles.”

Jonny Malbon (Artemis): “I had a 60 foot piece of rope around my keel this morning so I have spent a few hours trying to get that off which was not much fun. It was pretty horrible until the front came through which was very, very sudden. I had 47 knots and just a white out, with rain and a horrendous sea state. The boat was slamming very hard, everything was moving about the place and so it was pretty scary. I am not particularly happy with where I am, but the guys who have pushed on have done an amazing job.” »

Loïck Peyron (Gitana Eighty): “I’ve got all the sails out on deck and the conditions have really eased off… The wind is between 15 and 20 knots and Gitana Eighty is sailing on a long clean swell. There is a huge contrast between the current conditions and what we went through during the first thirty hours at sea. I have known worse winds in the Bay of Biscay , particularly in the 2002 Route du Rhum, but this time it was the sea state that was particularly nasty. The boat was really getting pummelled. I haven’t had time to do a thorough check-up, but everything seems fine. Our first achievement was making it in with the the frontrunners after the storm. Others weren’t quite so lucky and I’m thinking of them. To begin, with it was the sea state that stopped me from sleeping, then last night, there were the manoeuvres on the deck, which only allowed me to grab some short periods of rest. Gradually, I had to hoist all the sail, as the wind eased off after the front went over. Now, the conditions should enable me finally to get some rest.”