Please select your home edition
Edition
SailX 728x90

Transat Jacques Vabre - MOD70 20nm prologue cancelled

by Daphne Morgan Barnicoat on 5 Nov 2013
Oman Air Musandam MOD70 skipper Sidney Gavignet (FRA) with co skipper Damian Foxall (IRL) in rough weather © Lloyd Images
For the Transat Jacques Vabre, violent low-pressure systems sweeping in from the West forced the race committee to postpone the start of the 11th edition for the second time and to cancel the MOD70 20nm prologue for the Sultanate of Oman’s flagship campaign Oman Air-Musandam and their competitor, Edmond de Rothschild.

Originally planned for Sunday, weather conditions delayed the scheduled start to Monday for the IMOCA 60s, Class 40s and Multi 50s, with a prologue planned for the two MOD70s, but late Sunday night the race committee decided to further postpone until Thursday at the earliest for all except the MOD70s that might be able to slip out on Wednesday.


'Starting this race in November is always challenging, we had a low pressure come through last night and there is another one coming through tomorrow and the most important thing for the race committee is to get us off safely,' said Damian Foxall from Ireland who has over 350,000 nautical miles behind him, a recent Volvo Ocean Race win with Groupama and is on his third Transat Jacques Vabre.

Oman Air-Musandam skipper, Sidney Gavignet (FRA), who has his fair share of single-handed, double-handed and Volvo Ocean Races under his belt explained the challenges that the race committee faces: 'The fleet is made up of very fast boats with the MOD70s; intermediate boats with the Multi 50s and the IMOCA 60s and then the Class 40s which are a bit slower and mixed amateur and professional crews. For this reason it is very difficult to find a window.

'It is easier for us because we go quickly so we need a small window of opportunity to get out of the English Channel and to Finisterre from where we can consider we are in good shape, still very safety conscious, of course, but looking for speed as well. For the Class 40s it takes some time to get out of the Channel and through Biscay, so it is more complicated,' he said.

'The MOD70s are very seaworthy boats, they are one design, well built and really reliable. We have been sailing them hard all year in very rough conditions, but of course with the current conditions of very high westerlies blowing against the tide, the sea state is very steep and rough. They are boat-breaking conditions out there right now,' added Damian.

For the race organisation sending a fleet of 43 boats out – that is 86 people on the water – is a major decision and a big responsibility. 'It is hard. I think they made the right decision to delay, these conditions are boat breaking – in Biscay there is a four to five metre sea state whipped up by the westerlies that have been blowing for the last three days, but now the challenge is to find the right window to start,' said Sidney.

In the meantime, the Oman Air-Musandam duo will continue with their routine of gym, weather checks and boat checks until the race committee calls for a start.

'We are ready to go and looking forward to the warmer weather in the South!' said Sidney as the skies opened once more over Le Oman Event website

upffront 660x82Storm Force Marine 1Wildwind 2016 660x82

Related Articles

Record entries for Audi Hamilton Island Race Week
Audi Hamilton Island Race Week 2016 has broken into exciting new territory with the number of entries surging past 227 Audi Hamilton Island Race Week 2016 has broken into exciting new territory with the number of entries surging past 227 – the highest number in the regatta’s spectacular 33-year history.
Posted on 25 Jul
Foiling Week 2016 - Images by Gilles Martin-Raget from Lake Garda
Top international sailing photographer, Gilles Martin-Raget was at Lake Garda for the Foiling Week 2016 GARDA Top international sailing photographer, Gilles Martin-Raget was at Lake Garda for the Foiling Week 2016 GARDA to make the core images of a new book, 'The flying boats', to be launched later this year. Fasten your seat belts!
Posted on 11 Jul
Brawn v Brain? The Bar or The Room?
Interesting questions and can they possibly be linked in any way. Interesting questions and can they possibly be linked in any way. Is it just the one connection, or could there indeed be several ways to address this conundrum? Well the route of the answer could be SailX, the online inshore racing game.
Posted on 7 Jul
Shadow Catamaran Nationals go down to the last race at Gurnard
2016 Shadow Catamaran 2016 Nationals were held at friendly Gurnard Sailing Club on the Solent The 2016 Shadow Catamaran 2016 Nationals were held at friendly Gurnard Sailing Club on the Solent (the sunset side of Cowes) from 17th to 19th June. The Shadow X is a high performance single-handed catamaran with an asymmetric spinnaker.
Posted on 24 Jun
Volvo Round Ireland Race starts with eclectic mix of boats and crews
The Volvo Round Ireland Race started in 10 to 11 knots of southerly wind and a fair tide. The Volvo Round Ireland Race started in 10 to 11 knots of southerly wind and a fair tide. The first fleet away were the 55 monohulls consisting of a vast mixture of boats and crews. From one of the fastest offshore race boats in the world, George David’s Juan K designed Rambler 88 to Darryl Hughes’s Shepherd 43’ Classic, Maybird.
Posted on 18 Jun
Volvo Round Ireland Race – Multihulls and MOD70s are up for challenge
The 704 nautical mile race has a simple course; Leave Ireland and all its islands, excluding Rockall, to starboard. The 704 nautical mile race has a simple course; Leave Ireland and all its islands, excluding Rockall, to starboard. However in reality the race has a complexity of wind angles, tides and a real taste of ocean sailing along the hauntingly beautiful west coast of Ireland. The first official non-stop race around Ireland was held in 1980.
Posted on 17 Jun
Road to Rio – One Olympic venue to the next
Sailing World Cup touched down in Weymouth and Portland last week and it was one of the last official organised regattas The Sailing World Cup touched down in Weymouth and Portland last week and it was one of the last official organised regattas before the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. It gave the future Olympians an opportunity to test themselves one last time against their Rio competitors, in a full race setting, before the summer showpiece.
Posted on 15 Jun
Countdown to Tour de France a la Voile begins with one month to go
The Oman Airports by Oman Sail Diam 24 crew are upbeat about preparations for the 2016 Tour de France a la Voile The Oman Airports by Oman Sail Diam 24 crew are upbeat about preparations for the 2016 Tour de France a la Voile (TDFV) which kicks off in a month after some valuable racing at Normandy Sailing Week in France last week where they finished seventh in a field of 17 teams, many of whom will be heading to Dunkirk for the start of the TDFV on July 8.
Posted on 9 Jun
World Sailing invites bids for 2017 and 2018 Annual Conference
Annual Conference brings together more than 400 delegates over a seven-day period every first full week of November. World Sailing's Annual Conference brings together more than 400 delegates over a seven-day period every first full week of November. It is the central meeting point where the strategy of sailing is reviewed, discussed and celebrated.
Posted on 7 Jun
World Sailing completes final on-site review of the Rio 2016 Olympic
Briefings were provided over two days on key operational and service areas for the Olympic Games. Briefings were provided over two days on key operational and service areas for the Olympic Games, including venue construction, competition schedules, broadcasting, media operations, accommodation, transportation and ticketing.
Posted on 26 May