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  1. Peter Gustafsson
    May 3, 2016 @ 22:27

    NEWSFLASH: Float damage for Erwan Le Roux in The Transat bakerly

    On Tuesday 3rd May, at around 1900hrs GMT+2, Erwan Le Roux, the skipper of FenêtréA Cardinal, sustained substantial damage to the port float on his Multi50 trimaran.

    Erwan was leading The Transat bakerly Multi50 fleet when the incident occurred, sailing downwind in a northeasterly 25-27 knots, and was approximately sixty miles off Cape Finisterre. He managed to secure his boat before alerting his shore crew.

    He is now in regular contact with his weather man to find the best landing point between Portugal and Spain, and is sailing at a reduced speed on a heading of 135°.

    More information to follow.


  2. Peter Gustafsson
    May 4, 2016 @ 07:04

    NEWSFLASH: On Wednesday May 4th, shortly after midnight and while sailing off Cape Finisterre in 25-30 knots of northeasterly wind, Sébastien Josse sustained serious damage to the batons on his mainsail, when he broached his IMOCA60 Edmond de Rothschild during a gybe.

    The damage poses no immediate threat but is irreparable at sea, and after consultation with his technical team, Josse has made the difficult decision to retire from The Transat bakerly. He is now en route to Vigo in Galicia, Spain, where he will be joined by members of the Gitana team.

    At the time of the incident, Josse was in a battle near the front of the IMOCA fleet with Vincent Riou on board PRB and Armel le Cleac’h’s Banque Populaire.

    More information to follow shortly.


  3. Gert Fasting
    May 4, 2016 @ 22:19

    “…keeping watch but did not see the cargo ship”
    Hög tid för Maxime att besöka en optiker.


  4. Peter Gustafsson
    May 5, 2016 @ 08:57

    The calm before the storm in The Transat bakerly
    The 21 solo sailors still racing on the third day of The Transat bakerly from Plymouth to New York are now spread out on a north-south axis of over a thousand miles of the north Atlantic.

    While the biggest yachts in the fleet – the Ultimes – continue on an extreme southerly course, that is taking the leaders well south of the Azores, the two monohull fleets – the Class40s and the IMOCA 60s together with the Multi50 trimarans – are much further north.

    In their path is a deep Atlantic depression that is likely to hit the IMOCAs and the Multi50s head-on tomorrow morning. The Class40s may escape the worst of the headwinds but they too are expecting to hit the sort of conditions that have made The Transat bakerly such a formidable challenge over the years.

    The Class40s are amongst the most competitive fleets in solo sailing and – as expected – they are putting on a compelling show. The nine boats still in it (following the retirement of Maxime Sorel on VandB), are spread out over 195 miles, north-south, but there is only 85 miles separating the leader, Thibaut Vauchel-Camus on Solidaires en Peloton-Arsep from Anna Maria Renken on Nivea in seventh place.

    Snapping at Vauchel-Camus’ heels in third is Louis Duc on Carac. This morning he said the race has felt more like a trip from Europe to the Caribbean than a typical Transat upwind thrash to New York. But he knows that is about to change.

    “We have been sailing through a small ridge and now we are looking at the depression that is on its way,” he said on the satellite phone. “The fleet is very spread out and it will be interesting to see what everyone does. All is well on board and I am in good shape.”

    A long way south of Duc, Yves Le Blevec, the third-placed skipper in the Ultime class on board Actual, has been enjoying a downwind race that looks as though it will continue – for him and his two rivals at least – for several more days.

    “It’s going pretty well,” he said today. “We have had good sailing conditions and I’m pretty happy. I have a lot of work. Although we have not had very harsh conditions, there have been a lot of manoeuvres and I have used the whole sail wardrobe. It always takes a little time to find the rhythm, but I feel really fit. Right now I’m trying to cross a small (area of high pressure). There is little wind and flat seas. Not so bad!”

    A long way to the north of the racing fleet the French legend Loick Peyron is continuing to plough a lonely furrow on what might be termed a classic Transat route of old. Peyron is sailing Eric Tabarly’s old boat – the 44ft ketch Pen Duick II – in the same trim as it was when Tabarly won the 1964 Transat, then known as the OSTAR.

    Unlike the racing fleet, Peyron does not have access to modern weather software and so is sailing what he sees, much as Tabarly would have done. As of this morning Pen Duick II was cruising along at five knots, 250 miles due west of Land’s End with 2,700 miles still to go to New York. Peyron was just ahead of Tabarly’s equivalent position 52 years ago.


  5. Peter Gustafsson
    May 7, 2016 @ 22:04

    Så kul att Isabelle Joschke tagit ledningen i Class 40,
    Och en tävlingsledning som faktiskt bryr sig om trafikseparationer :-)

    All hail Isabelle in The Transat bakerly

    The Franco-German sailor Isabelle Joschke has had an extraordinary 36 hours in The Transat bakerly, making the best speed in the competitive Class40 fleet through an intense mid-Atlantic depression.

    The competitive instincts in Joschke – an accomplished sailor with seven Solitaire Bompard Le Figaro campaigns behind her – came to the fore as she used the gale force winds to power her boat forward at breakneck speed but without breaking anything on board.

    At one point her red and white 40-foot monohull – Generali-Horizon Mixite – hit an impressive 25 knots of boatspeed as it hurtled down waves heading west across the Atlantic. Joschke, aged 39, has been loving every minute of her first race in a Class40 that has seen her climb up the leaderboard to second place, just eight miles behind the leader, Britain’s Phil Sharp on Imerys.

    However she is now taking the class lead outright after the imposition by the official race Jury of a six-hour, stop-go, time penalty on Sharp. This is for sailing through an area of water busy with commercial shipping off the French Brittany island of Ushant that is excluded to competitors.

    Sharp will have to effectively stop his boat for six hours before continuing with the race, a delay that will drop him out of contention for the lead for the time being. He said on the sat phone earlier in the race that he strayed into the exclusion zone because he was not aware that it was prohibited under the race rules.

    Before being notified that she is now the leader of the class, Joschke was in ebullient form as she recalled her battle with a classic north Atlantic storm. “Last night was amazing,” she reported. “We passed north of the centre of the depression and the wind shifted to the southwest at 45-50 knots and blew many times at 50-60 knots. The boat handled it well and was very fast.”

    “I was inside and wondering what was going to happen, and what I would do if the boat broached, and whether I could handle that. In the surf the noise was crazy – everything was roaring. It was pretty stressful but crazy fun too. I have never sailed in conditions like this – with this much wind. The boat reached speeds of 25 knots – my top speed – that was something.”

    Joschke has surprised some with her performance on debut in the class, including possibly herself. “This morning I really felt part of The Transat bakerly. It was like reliving my first Mini-Transat. I feel so full of adventure as I don’t know the Class40 properly and how it handles in manoeuvres and I often wonder how things are going to turn out,” she said.

    “You need a lot of energy to sail it and it is really physical. But it’s really fun and I’ll say that during the storm I felt happy with myself and my performance. I’m back in the game and, although it’s exhausting, I’m doing well and I want to keep it that way,” Joschke added.

    Elsewhere in this action-packed transatlantic contest, the giant trimarans of the Ultime class are now heading northwest towards New York where the current leader Macif skippered by Francois Gabart, is expected in the early hours of Wednesday morning UK time. After his close duel with Thomas Coville on Sodebo, Gabart is now 75 miles ahead as the big multihulls drive north in a strong southeasterly airflow about 800 miles east of Bermuda.

    In the IMOCA 60s, meanwhile, the leading boats are crossing a high pressure ridge on the west side of the depression as they skirt the southern edge of the officially-sanctioned Ice Exclusion Zone off Newfoundland. The IMOCA race is turning into a fascinating battle between current leader Armel Le Cleac’h on the foiling Banque Populaire and Vincent Riou on the more conventionally-configured PRB. This afternoon they are 53 miles apart.

    The Multi50 race is taking advantage of the biggest racecourse in the world right now with the leader, Lalou Roucayrol on Arkema, 120 miles ahead of second-placed Gilles Lamire on French tech Rennes St Malo but separated from him by a yawning 500 miles of open ocean.


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