Please select your home edition
Edition
Guy Nowell - Red 728

Spindrift 2 negotiates Transition zone in Atlantic record attempt

by Spindrift racing on 4 Nov 2013
Dona Bertarelli - Spindrift Racing - Offshore training October 2013 Chris Schmid/Spindrift Racing
Making the most of a powerful trade wind, Spindrift 2 continues its Atlantic crossing at full speed. On a starboard tack throughout the day yesterday, the largest trimaran in the world – skippered by Dona Bertarelli and Yann Guichard – did a double jibe overnight to plunge into the stronger winds blowing from the east.

The most delicate moment of the Discovery Route is coming up, with the transition zone to negotiate in approximately thirty hours, between the trade wind and the strong low-pressure system settling in along the North American coastline and to the Bahamas. The situation is being closely monitored by Richard Silvani ashore and the trio Guichard-Bertarelli-Israel on board the maxi multihull. From tonight they will have to apply their seamanship and regatta experience to manoeuvre a double gybe approaching the weaker wind zone in order to reach the strong north-easterly flow and finish the record attempt on a starboard tack.


'The problem is twofold,' explains Yann Guichard. 'If we cross the low pressure area from the north, we will be out of the zone of light winds sooner, but for this, we will have to sail further north. If we cross it from the south, we will remain on the most direct route, but will have to negotiate the calm waters for longer'. The good news for the 14 men and one woman on board, is Spindrift 2’s lead – described as 'interesting' – over the current record holder, Franck Cammas’ Maxi trimaran Groupama three, racing in 2007 and at this point of the race, more than 330 miles in their wake. 'Reason enough to take it calmly', said Richard Silvani.

'Things are unfolding as we had expected from the outset at Cadiz', Guichard said. 'We will not take any risks. We will choose the latitude to attempt the passage in the next five or six hours. We should not lose more than four to five hours in the thalweg. ' Spindrift 2 can then make the most of the fine trade wind conditions for a good part of the day. 'The sea has continued to improve and flatten, making Dona’s work easier', says Yann.

Dona Bertarelli is really getting her bearings on her first Atlantic crossing. Her account is most revealing of the complexity of piloting the largest racing trimaran in the world. ' I managed to overcome the psychological barrier when I was able to successfully helm at 40 knots of speed. The difficulty is not so much the wind strength or the boat speed but the magnitude and direction of the waves that complicate the task and are still today a challenge for me.


Keeping the boat consistently at high speed and in tune to the state of the sea requires technique, concentration and also physical strength. When conditions are very tough, I do not helm for more than 30 minutes at a time'. And she treated us to an eloquent postcard; 'It is very hot inside. Everyone is suffering from the clammy humidity, and rest has become more difficult, while preparing meals has become a hard slog in a real sauna! I really picked up the pace, however demanding, sailing all the time above 30 knots. Loud noise is constant below deck, the sound of waves crashing on the hulls, the sheets rattling with each shock, the grinding of the boat…. but also on deck, with the wind, and life on board is sporty, with the boat constantly swinging about, racing down a wave to then to crash, pitch up again, leap out of the water … it’s moving all the time!

Staying on your feet is a challenge. Having said that, the atmosphere is excellent, the focus is on the boat speed but there is also a friendly atmosphere and we all muck in. We are all enjoying ourselves; it is extraordinary to experience this record attempt on this boat, with this crew and with a challenge of this magnitude.'

Racing at full speed to break the Discovery Route record, Guichard, despite the significant lead gained from the first miles, is far from complacent. 'There are still over 1500 miles to be covered and we must remain extremely focused and vigilant. The wind will ease and we are going to have to navigate, helm and trim with even greater precision to maintain the pace and speed if we want to beat the record.'

At 14:30hrs GMT this morning Spindrift has a 311.99 miles lead on the current record time.


Crew of the maxi Spindrift 2 for The Discovery Route :
Dona Bertarelli
Yann Guichard
Xavier Revil
Jean Baptiste le Vaillant
Antoine Carraz
Thierry Douillard
Christophe Espagnon
?Sébastien Marsset
Nicolas Texier
Erwan Tabarly
?François Morvan
Thomas Rouxel
Simone Gaeta
Erwan Israel

Weather routing : Richard Silvani

Time to beat : 7 days, 10 hours, 58 minutes, 53 seconds
To beat the current record, Spindrift 2 must cross the finish line in under Thursday, november seventh at 02hrs, 17ms, and 27 seconds
Current record : Groupama 3 (Franck Cammas) in 2007
Distance : 3884 milles (WSSRC)

North Technology - Southern SparsStorm Force Marine 1Ancasta Ker 33 660x82

Related Articles

Krabi waters deliver a spectacular Day 3 of the Bay Regatta 2017
Opting for just two starts each day – monohulls / multihulls – has proven a successful strategy for 2017 The Bay Regatta Opting for just two starts each day – monohulls and multihulls – has proven a successful strategy for the 2017 The Bay Regatta, getting the boats off early and enjoying the good breeze and eye-candy that is the Andaman triangle of Phuket-Phang Nga-Krabi.
Posted on 18 Feb
Amedeo writes his own Vendée Globe story
Parisian political journalist turned solo ocean race Fabrice Amedeo secured 11th place when he crossed the finish line Parisian political journalist turned solo ocean race Fabrice Amedeo secured 11th place when he crossed the finish line off Les Sables d'Olonne at 09 hrs 03 m UTC this morning Saturday 18th February.
Posted on 18 Feb
Vendee Globe - Under a square head jury rig and storm jib - Day 104
Conrad Colman updates from the Atlantic as he makes 6.2kts under Jury Rig with 488nm remaining to sail Conrad Colman updates from the Atlantic as he makes 6.2kts under Jury Rig with 488nm remaining to sail to reach the finish line of the Vendee Globe. The single handed sailor is attempting to become the first competitor in the eight editions of the solo non-stop round the world race to complete the course using only natural energy. He has 200nm under the makeshift rig
Posted on 18 Feb
Amedeo writes his own Vendée Globe story - 11th place
Fabrice Amedeo secured 11th place in the Vendée Globe when he crossed the finish line off Les Sables d’Olonne Journalist and solo ocean race Fabrice Amedeo secured 11th place in the Vendée Globe when he crossed the finish line off Les Sables d’Olonne at 09 hrs 03 m UTC this morning Saturday 18th February. His excellent finish represents the culmination of a dream to take part in the famous solo ocean race around the world. Sailing Newrest-Matmut Amedeo's elapsed time for the course is 103 d 21h 1 m.
Posted on 18 Feb
EFG Sailing Arabia – The Tour - Douillard avenges upset with victory
French sailing star Thierry Douillard avenged shock last-minute defeat in opening stage of EFG Sailing Arabia – The Tour French sailing star Thierry Douillard avenged a shock last-minute defeat in the opening stage of EFG Sailing Arabia – The Tour by snatching victory in round two of the Gulf classic on Friday.
Posted on 18 Feb
J Class to race its first ever World Championship this year
Just over one hundred years on from the advent of the Universal Rule, the J Class will get to race World Championship. Just over one hundred years on from the advent of the Universal Rule, to which they were originally built, the J Class will this year get to race its first ever World Championship.
Posted on 17 Feb
Spain’s Xabi Fernández to skipper MAPFRE in Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18
Xabi will return to the Volvo Ocean Race after finishing his work for Sir Ben Ainslie’s America’s Cup campaign. The 40-year-old Xabi, who has taken part in the Volvo Ocean Race four times, won Olympic gold in Athens 2004, and followed that up with a silver in 2008 – both times alongside his long-term sailing partner Iker Martínez.
Posted on 17 Feb
Volvo Ocean Race - MAPFRE name Xabi Fernández as skipper
The Basque sailor Xabi Fernández will be once again skipper of the VO65 MAPFRE in the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18 The Basque sailor Xabi Fernández will be once again skipper of the VO65 MAPFRE in the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18, a responsibility that he undertook in the last edition of the race, alongside Iker Martínez. Xabi, born in Ibarra (Basque Country, Spain) in 1976, has a lengthy professional career as an elite sportsman, and an outstanding list of achievements in all the major world sailing events.
Posted on 17 Feb
Vendée Globe – Arnaud Boissières takes tenth place
Arnaud Boissières crossed the finish line at 0826hrs UTC this Friday morning to take 10th place in the non-stop race. After a slow final night at sea in very light airs as he waited to arrive after sunrise, Arnaud Boissières crossed the finish line at 0826hrs UTC this Friday morning to take 10th place in the non-stop solo round the world race.
Posted on 17 Feb
Vendee Globe - Cali on the line at nine; Colman with square top main
Arnaud Boissières is poised to cross the finish line around 0800hrs UTC, 0900hrs local time. Arnaud Boissières is poised to cross the finish line around 0800hrs UTC, 0900hrs local time. Winds have been very light for his last, quiet night before he takes 10th place.
Posted on 17 Feb