Please select your home edition
Edition
Ancasta Ker 33 728x90

Safran on final thousand miles of North Atlantic record attempt

by Safran Sailing Team on 3 Jul 2013
Safran, Skipper Marc Guillemot Francois Van Malleghem http://www.pixsail.com/
Having begun his attempt to grab the prestigious North Atlantic record four and a half days ago, Marc Guillemot is set to begin the final thousand miles he needs to sail to get to The Lizard. Safran is currently 95 miles ahead of the record pace set by Alex Thomson. The goal is to finish before 2027hrs UTC (2237hrs CET) on Saturday evening.

'The seas are quite heavy and the wind has become variable. The proof can be seen now, as Safran is sailing at 20 knots as I speak to you, while just a minute ago we were at 16 knots. The visibility has improved slightly. I even managed to catch a glimpse of the horizon. But to make it clear, it’s dull, grey damp and misty…' Marc Guillemot freely admits that this legendary record between New York and The Lizard is very demanding. On the starboard tack in a SW’ly wind blowing at around 25 knots, the pressure is on the boat and the sailor. Right in the middle of the Atlantic, the four gybes carried out yesterday were tough and he has to battle against the tiredness, which is starting to be felt. 'I had a two-hour nap during the night, my second since setting off. I really needed that, as I was exhausted.'

Sailing 400 miles north of Alex Thomson’s route from July 2012, the skipper of Safran explains, 'Yesterday, I carried out two tacks to get back up north: one for four hours in the morning and another for two hours in the evening. Quite simply as there is more pressure further north (stronger winds, editor’s note) and even if the wind angle is not as good up there, I decided I needed to play that card.' Logically, with these two tacks perpendicular to the direct route, Safran has willingly given up (in the short term) a bit of her lead over Alex Thomson’s record pace: Marc Guillemot nevertheless remains around a hundred miles ahead early this Tuesday afternoon.

Late this afternoon, Marc will begin the final thousand miles to The Lizard. He has just over four days left to hope to finish in less than eight days and 21 hours. On paper, maintaining an average distance of over 250 miles in 24 hours seems to be within the ability of a 60-foot boat, but a word of caution…

'Nothing has yet been won or lost,' warned the skipper of Safran. 'As I think the final stretch is likely to be uncertain and may even be tricky. If we manage to smash the record, it will be down to hours at best. Let’s just say that for the moment, I can see myself finishing some time on Saturday, but I can’t be any more precise than that.'

Safran has to cross the line by 2227hrs on 6th July to see her name in the record books. And if possible too, by winning the duel currently underway in real time with Energa, the boat skippered by the Polish skipper, Zbigniew Gutkowski. The two men are more or less tying in mid-Atlantic. 'This is a difficult record,' commented the skipper of Safran once again, 'You must avoid applying mathematical rules based on the first half of the crossing, which we covered in three days and eight hours. The winds were stronger and above all steadier than they will be from now on.'

One to watch closely...

In short: At 10:00 hrs UTC (1200hrs CET) on Tuesday 2nd July 2013, after 4 days and 11 hours of sailing since setting out from New York, Safran was sailing at 49°11’58 North / 33°56'48 West. Distance covered: 1828 miles. Distance left to sail: 1112 miles. Speed: 17.1 knots. Bearing: due East (90°). 96 miles ahead of Alex Thomson’s record.

www.safran-group.com
Zhik AkzoNobelb 660x82Wildwind 2016 660x82PredictWind.com

Related Articles

New addition to North Sail for Volvo Ocean 65 racing machines
Their sails have powered eight out of nine Volvo Ocean Race winners since 1989-90, with Steinlager 2. Instead of assembling cloth panels into a particular sail shape, the Volvo Ocean Race sails are composites. This means that 3Di material 'tapes' are laid in a specific arrangement, offering stable structure to the sail where it is needed most.
Posted today at 2:02 pm
Experience is key as Team Oman Air prepare for Extreme Sailing Series
Team Oman Air skipper Phil Robertson says his crew's unrivalled experience could prove vital to victory in second round Known worldwide for hosting sailing at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Qingdao is notorious for its ability to catch crews off guard with a fickle breeze that can go from next to nothing to gale force in a matter of minutes.
Posted today at 10:31 am
FAST40+ Spring Regatta - Preview
The second event in a busy FAST40+ season will be the FAST40+ Spring Regatta, hosted by the Royal Southern Yacht Club. The second event in a busy FAST40+ season will be the FAST40+ Spring Regatta, hosted by the Royal Southern Yacht Club. FAST40+ Race Director, Stuart Childerley, sets the scene for the event.
Posted today at 8:38 am
Meet the Clipper 2017-18 Race crew Zuzana Vybiralova
A first for Clipper Race, Zuzana Vybiralova will make history this year as first Czech Republican to take part in race A first for the Clipper Race, crew member Zuzana Vybiralova will make history this year as the first Czech Republican to take part in the race in eleven editions.
Posted today at 8:01 am
Champions crowned after tricky finale at Sperry Charleston Race Week
Charleston is known for its reliable spring seabreeze, but the Holy City’s coast outdid itself this year Charleston is known for its reliable spring seabreeze, but the Holy City’s coast outdid itself this year during the 22nd edition of Sperry Charleston Race Week. It wasn’t just the three race days either; from the first team’s arrival for practice more than a week earlier until the lengthy awards ceremony on Sunday night, reliable southerly winds buffeted the region, ensuring maximum racing
Posted today at 4:27 am
She’s still here with us, and now we can be there for her
Of the many endearing qualities in Lisa Blair, the most paramount is her effervescence. Of the many endearing qualities in Lisa Blair, the most paramount is her effervescence. Yet it is what lies behind that which could be her most incredible characteristic. Sometimes you can almost overlook her steely determination, but not for long when you start talking with her. Catching up with her live from Cape Town surely was a vivid reminder of not only what this sailor can accomplish...
Posted today at 1:08 am
Wild Day 2 at Sperry Charleston Race Week
For a second day, Charleston Harbor and open ocean just offshore provided near-perfect conditions for over 200 teams For a second straight day, Charleston Harbor and the open ocean just offshore provided near-perfect conditions for over 200 competing teams at Sperry Charleston Race Week 2017. Boats across all six courses faced brisk southerly winds of 15-20 knots, while the offshore boats saw five-foot waves and big gusts on the second day of the biggest multiclass keelboat regatta in the Americas.
Posted on 23 Apr
The Vendée Globe skippers hosted at the Elysée Palace
The Elysée Palace yesterday hosted a grand ceremony where the Head of State honoured the heroes of offshore racing. The Elysée Palace yesterday hosted a grand ceremony where the Head of State honoured the heroes of offshore racing. Twenty-three of the twenty-nine Vendée Globe skippers attended the event, gathering around winner Armel Le Cléac’h, appointed Knight of the Legion of Honour.
Posted on 22 Apr
48th anniversary of Sir Robin’s Golden Globe victory
Robin Knox-Johnston set off for Sunday Times Golden Globe Race, striving to be the first person to sail single handed In 1968, when 29 year-old Robin Knox-Johnston set off for the Sunday Times Golden Globe Race, striving to be the first person to sail single handed, nonstop around the world was not the only challenge he had to overcome.
Posted on 22 Apr
World Cup Series Hyères – Returning to action
There will be a Riou partnering Besson, but this time it will be in the shape of former Laser Radial competitor, Amélie. Besson, along with partner Marie Riou, won all four Nacra 17 World Championship titles in the Rio 2016 quadrennial but failed to capitalise on that dominance as a back injury hampered any Olympic medal ambitions the pair harboured.
Posted on 21 Apr