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sail-world.com -- Vendee Globe - High speed action at sea

Vendee Globe - High speed action at sea    
Wed, 9 Jan 2013

In the Vendee Globe, Bernard Stamm and his Team Cheminées Poujoulat today announced that they have elected the solution to get more fuel onboard his Open 60 Cheminées Poujoulat at sea, boat-to-boat. This solution ensures the safety for the sailor and his monohull, because approaching a port without means of propulsion, or navigation data could be dangerous. With less than 5% of fuel left onboard, energy is severely rationed, and allows Stamm only one communication per day with his team.

On dry land, plans have been organized to respond quickly to his requirement when he arrives. Stamm is 250 miles away from the Cape Horn and has some way to go before he can receive the fuel. According to Cheminées Poujoulat’s speed and the weather conditions, the re-fueling area should be reached somewhere between Wednesday 9 January and Thursday 10 Jaunary. The boat to provide diesel oil to Bernard Stamm is none other than his friend, Unai Bazurko, Pakea Bizcaia, who Stamm raced against in the Velux 5 Oceans and also competed in the last edition of the Vendée Globe. Biskaean Bazurko is in Ushuaia undertaking an environmental expedition and he offered his help. Meanwhile, Bernard Stamm, yesterday, during a brief communication with his team, said that he is extremely tired because of the long hours spent at the helm, but is making good progress to Cape Horn.

Jean Le Cam (SynerCiel) became the fifth competitor to round Cape Horn, today, 8th January 2013 at 07h 19m 14s GMT for the fourth time in his sailing career. It took him 58 days 19h 17m 14s since he left Les Sables d'Olonne. He crossed the Horn six days 12 h 58 m 20 s after the race leader, François Gabart (MACIF).

Today, on the French version of Vendée Globe LIVE, Jean Le Cam (SynerCiel) said, 'I very pleased to be done with the Pacific. It’s a great moment. Last night in the Pacific we had 40 knots of wind. Enough is enough. I was one mile away when I crossed the Cape Horn. It was just the beginning of the day. I was so lucky. I made an awesome video. I hope you have someone who can deal with it, because since the beginning I’ve sending a ton of images, but nobody tells me anything about it. So I don’t know what’s going on. I think my Cape Horn crossing will be one of my best memories of this year’s edition. The way up the Atlantic should be nice according to my files. I’m exhausted but happy.'

Le Cam’s elated and ethereal rounding of Cape Horn will be a stark contrast to the 2008 edition of the Vendée Globe where he capsized and had to await rescue in his survival suit, inside his upturned hull.

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At two boats at the front of the fleet have been duelling closed hauled for the last 48 hours in tiring north westerly winds as they made long, slow arduous progress upwind. The wind however, has picked up for the François Gabart (MACIF) who has managed to extend his lead as it dropped off for Armel Le Cléac’h (Banque Populaire) slowing him down. There now lies a 103 miles gap between them, the greatest distance since the start. It’s not insurmountable, of course, because there are many pitfalls to overcome; their crossing of the St Helene High, the passage of the doldrums and the climb up the North Atlantic. There are still 5,000 miles to overcome in the ultimate fight for Vendée Globe victory.

François Gabart (MACIF) today said on French version of Vendée Globe LIVE, 'I’m quite fine, I keep on going. I am sailing faster now. I don’t have an incredible speed but it’s getting better. I try to do my best to remain sharp. The journey is still long, so I try to rest as much as I can. I’ll try to catch the South East trade winds in a few days. Sometimes I think about the arrival in Les Sables. I think about my family. It’s a source of motivation. Now we are closer to the finishing closer. I hope my fight with Armel will keep on going.'

Jean-Pierre Dick (Virbac Paprec 3) has also lost ground, as his problems with his forestay yesterday absorbed the bank of miles in which he had invested so much. Today, he was recovering his strength after his troubles of the day and to trying to prevent the return of Hugo Boss, who is 178 miles astern. Today, Alex Thomson (Hugo Boss) is clearly vying for his podium place.

Mike Golding (Gamesa) will be the sixth competitor to round Cape Horn, either tonight, or in the early hours of Wednesday morning. 'This may be my last' Golding declared in his daily update. The skipper of Gamesa will lead a parade of five Open 60 around the Chilean rock in the space of 36 hours, the parade finishing with Javier Sanso (Acciona 100% EcoPowered).

Behind the five about to round the Horn, Bertrand De Broc (Votre Nom Autour du Monde avec EDM) is en route to the final Pacific gate, hurtling along with three reefs and staysail in 40 knots of wind. However, it is not just the strength of the wind that rattles him but the large hollow eight-meter waves, formed by the cold cross-southwest and northwest winds. Tanguy de Lamotte (Initiatives Cœur) will find himself in the same system very soon.

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Harsh conditions also Alessandro Di Benedetto (Team Plastique) whose boat Team Plastique (the only one with a fixed keel) was by far the fastest in the last 24 hours with 393.7 miles on the dial. He is expected to reach the Horn in eight days.

François Gabart (MACIF) rounded Cape Horn on January 1, 2013 at 18:20 GMT 52 days 06h 18mn after the race.

Armel Le Cléac'h (Banque Populaire) rounded Cape Horn on January 1, 2013 at 19:35 GMT 52days 07h 33mn after the race.

Jean-Pierre Dick (Virbac-Paprec 3) rounded Cape Horn January 3 at 4:42 GMT 53 days 16h after 40 minutes Alex Thomson (Hugo Boss) rounded Cape Horn January 4 at 2:38 GMT after 54 days 14h 36 min race.

Jean Le Cam (SynerCiel) rounded Cape Horn on January 8 58d 19h after 7:19 GMT 17mn 14s and is running six days 12 h 58 m 20 s after MACIF.

Arnaud Boissières (FRA, Akena Vérandas): I should cross the Cape Horn within 40 hours. I hope it will be daytime which will allow me to take great pictures. There is not a lot of wind at the moment. But I’m on the direct route to the Cape Horn. The weather conditions should change and become stronger. When I had Javier on the phone, we said that we should continue our journey together because when you fight against someone you go faster than if you were alone. So now there is dark alliance between us.

Mike Golding (GBR, Gamesa): It is squally now again and I am just being careful. It went quiet for a time and I gybed just at the 0400hrs sked. I am about 60 miles off the coast. I’d like to have been a bit closer but if you are in there and you get a windshift you can look very average very quickly. It is so changeable. So I am just keeping going and taking it a bit carefully. It looks like I will go around in about 25kts of wind then there is a little quiet patch in the Le Maire Straits and then my routing takes me east of the Falklands. It might well be, and that is fine! I am very aware that this will be my last solo passage of the Cape. There are many things I am doing which might be for the last time but I am fine with that. I have had such a good run, I have nothing to complain about. I would like to enjoy it this time and get the weather to do so. It would be nice for it to be special.

Jean-Pierre Dick (FRA, Virbac Paprec 3): It was a black Monday for me. What an awful day. I had to do my repairs in chaotic conditions. The piece which broke is the one that secure the mast. So I had to stop the boat because you don’t repair such a piece like that. I think I managed to do something good. But regarding the ranking it’s not positive. My repairs were very dangerous in these conditions.

Thomas Coville: Safran est à la fois fiable et performant. De bon augure pour le Vendée Globe!

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Vendee Globe website

by Vendee Globe



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