Please select your home edition
Edition
Zhik Dinghy Wetsuits

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)

Ensign Bavaria C57 April 2017Sail Exchange 660x82 Used SailsJeanneau Sunfast 660x82

Related Articles

New faces in town with RC44 Sotogrande Cup set to begin
This event follows from last season's RC44 World Championship also held off this magnificent development Of the eight teams competing off Sotogrande, favourite is Igor Lah's Team CEEREF. Not only is the cockpit on the Slovenian RC44 adorned with the overall championship leader's 'golden wheels', but Lah's team also won the World Championship here in 2016.
Posted today at 6:06 pm
Sailing World Cup Hyères –Day 2– Zegers and van Veen show how its done
Afrodite Zegers and Anneloes van Veen were unstoppable on day two, winning both Women's 470 races in convincing style Out of the 534 competitors from 52 nations racing across ten Olympic events, Open Kiteboarding and 2.4 Norlin OD, the Dutch team were the standout performers.
Posted today at 5:55 pm
GC32 Racing Tour Owner-Driver Championship heats up
Unique aspect of GC32 is that compared to other foiling catamarans, it is simpler to sail and logistically easier to run Team Argo is sailing with the same crew as it had for February’s GC32 Championship in Oman, including leading American Moth and big boat sailor Anthony Kotoun and British former Olympic and America’s Cup sailor Alister Richardson.
Posted today at 2:58 pm
RORC Season's Points Championship and Cervantes Trophy Race preview
Over 5000 sailors from all over the world will race in the biggest offshore sailing competition in the world. Over 5000 sailors from all over the world will race in the biggest offshore sailing competition in the world. While this year the 2017 Rolex Fastnet Race is the showcase event, there are fourteen testing races that make up the championship, and every race has its own coveted prize for the overall winner and for class honours.
Posted today at 11:35 am
Biggest Round the World Ocean Race returns to Liverpool
The biggest round-the-world ocean race is to return to Liverpool with start and finish of this unique global challenge The biggest round-the-world ocean race is to return to Liverpool with the start and finish of this unique global challenge moving from the capital back to the River Mersey on the tenth anniversary of its last partnership with the region.
Posted today at 6:52 am
2018 BVI Spring Regatta adds new race to Sailing Festival
On the heels of the 2017 BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival, preparations have already begun for 2018. On the heels of the 2017 BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival, preparations have already begun for 2018. The week of March 27 - April 1 will offer the unique opportunity to race under a full moon. With that illumination, we will run the inaugural 'Full Moon Race, 64 Islands ~One Brilliant Night'.
Posted today at 6:32 am
Giant international gathering for Rolex Fastnet Race
August's Rolex Fastnet Race remains on track for a record-sized fleet. Currently 390 boats are entered August's Rolex Fastnet Race remains on track for a record-sized fleet. Currently 390 boats are entered: 338 competing for the main IRC handicap prize; the remainder racing for their own trophies in the Class40, IMOCA 60, Volvo Ocean 65 and Multihull grand prix classes.
Posted today at 5:25 am
Sailing World Cup Hyères – Laying down a marker
Over 500 sailors from 52 nations opened their quest for World Cup honours, personal best performances and bragging right In the 38 strong Women's Windsurfer fleet, Israel's Noga Geller came out flying with superb starts and speed. Feeling comfortable in the conditions, she snapped up the first two race wins.
Posted on 25 Apr
Debbie says the 8thP with Insurance is Patience (Pt.II)
We’re back to keep exploring the nature of TC Debbie and how she came to tell us about the eighth P of insurance We’re back to keep exploring the nature of TC Debbie and how she came to tell us about the eighth P of insurance. We looked at what it was like to come into a disaster zone and now we see the evidence of those that did the right thing, and how the area is already on the road to recovery.
Posted on 25 Apr
World Cup Series in Hyères – Racing needs to be fast, not the food
Spanish sisters, Carla and Marta Munté Carrasco, sail together in the 49erFX and know they have a problem. Many sailors will be brimming with confidence after browsing the weather forecast and will be striving for gold in Hyères. But it is a team small in stature that know exactly where they stand in terms of performance that intrigues.
Posted on 24 Apr