Alla är inte helt övertygade om att timingen för starten är rätt.
Tactical weather expert, Campbell Field, has taken part in three round the world races and is providing independent analysis of the race, simulating the information available to the navigators on board in his blog.
“It is only my opinion but I think that the organisers may have delayed the race a bit too long. The predicted conditions for the start and the first five maybe seven days will be very little wind but a significant sea sate and that combination can be actually worse. If the race had started 12 hours earlier, the sea state would still be signifiant but the teams would have had more wind and the ability to decide how close they would go to the cyclone. These yachts are built to withstand racing across the world’s oceans and the crew are well trained and highly experienced. Several teams have changed crew for this leg, bringing in really experienced people and it isn’t for their good looks!
In big seas and no wind, the options are very limited, the boat gear and sails might experience big shock loads as the boats get tossed around, it could be very difficult for the crew to work in those conditions.
“There is the potential for more cyclonic activity later in the leg. One thing is for sure, the weather data coming to the boats via the SAILOR FleetBroadband antennae will be absolutely vital throughout this leg, especially when choosing the best route. Normally, the weather is fairly easy to predict but with the cyclonic activity, the natural rhythm of the Southern Ocean has been disturbed and the regular weather updates will be essential to decide on the tactics in an ever changing scenario.
“Towards the end of the leg, the conditions should be more normal for the Southern Ocean and the teams will be surfing relentlessly at high speed down huge waves day after day, they will be experiencing some of the most amazing sailing anywhere in the world. However by this stage, the cold and fatigue will be having a big effect on a team’s performance. Later in the leg, the crew will really appreciate contact with their soul mates ashore. When you are cold, tired and hungry, hearing your wife or child’s voice can be a massive boost to your moral.”