Please select your home edition
Edition
Bakewell-White Yacht Design

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

Related Articles

Shape of next Volvo Ocean Race revealed at Southern Spars - Part 1
Southern Spars has been confirmed as the supplier of spars for the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. In mid-April, Race Director, Jack Lloyd and Stopover Manager Richard Mason outlined the changes expected for the 40,000nm Race during a tour of Southern Spars 10,000sq metre specialist spar construction facility. A total of up to seven boats is expected to enter, but time is running out for the construction of any new boats.
Posted on 3 May
Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr
From Olympic flag to Olympic Gold and maybe another
The Sydney Olympics was a Sailing double 470 Gold event for Australia. Having won the 420 World Championship in 2000, the feeder class to the 470, while still at school in Australia young Matt Belcher was given the honour of carrying the Olympic flag during the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
Posted on 28 Apr
Pantaenius – Smooth sailing is more than a favourable weather forecast
Pantaenius get ready to launch into their fourth year operating in Australia As Pantaenius get ready to launch into their fourth year operating in Australia, we get to see why they continue to grow their happy crew of customers. Sitting down with Pantaenius Australia’s MD, Jamie MacPhail, you immediately get a sense that the smooth sailing is a direct result of both their unique product and the marketplace’s willingness to embrace the better mousetrap
Posted on 27 Apr
100 days to Rio, are there potholes and bumps ahead?
The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres. The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres, at some World championship events and Weymouth World Cup but for most crews.
Posted on 26 Apr
Is George Lucas a sailor?
He’s very famous for a lot of things, and justifiably so. One of them is Industrial Light and Magic He’s very famous for a lot of things, and justifiably so. One of them is Industrial Light and Magic, which has been instrumental in the making of many of the special effects that have made the digital world so impressive. Gone are the smears of Vaseline along the bottom edge of the clear filter to hide the trolley that was actually transporting Luke Skywalker’s Speeder, for instance.
Posted on 25 Apr
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
Thou doth protest too much, me thinks
And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen about now. At any rate, it is simply an adaptation of Lady Gertrude’s original line. We merely seek to use it as a way to demonstrate that when there is a lot of brouhaha going on, the smoke screen ultimately ends up as a lovely, colourful flag as to the real intent behind it.
Posted on 18 Apr
Children of the Internet, Rio and Hong Kong
I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. The kind of conversations I have with her run along these lines.... In the olden days we did not have television until I left school and they had a thing called print magazines, that reported events between two weeks and four months after they happened. And her sceptical response... Hoh! Daddy, Hoh!
Posted on 14 Apr
Can World Sailing learn from dear old Oz?
Why just lay the drop sheets out and tape up the edges of the windows for a splash of paint Some time ago now, Sail-World proposed that ISAF had a really good opportunity at hand when it morphed into World Sailing (WS). Why just lay the drop sheets out and tape up the edges of the windows for a splash of paint, when you could bring out the jackhammers and do a proper reno??? A call was issued for 200,000 sets of goggles and earmuffs to be supplied and for the real work to be commenced.
Posted on 11 Apr
Lancer Industries - Lasts LongerInSunSport - NZBarz Optics - Melanin Lenses