Please select your home edition
Edition
Protector 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
PredictWind.comZhik AkzoNobelb 660x82Protector - 660 x 82

Related Articles

52 Super Series – Rán Racing win Portals opener
On the second beat, Alegre closed slightly, but Ado Stead and Adam Beashel defended down the run to keep their win safe. On the second beat, Alegre closed slightly, but Rán Racing’s Ado Stead and Adam Beashel defended down the run to keep their win safe.
Posted on 24 Jul
52 Super Series – Azzurra is third in the first day at Puerto Portals
The first day of racing was characterized by unstable winds, unusual conditions in the bay of Palma. The first day of racing at the Puerto Portals 52 Super Series Sailing Week was characterized by unstable winds, unusual conditions in the bay of Palma.
Posted on 24 Jul
Tour de France à la Voile – Super Final shakes Tahiti from top spot
This was one of the most physically demanding race days the 29 already-fatigued crews have experienced so far. This was one of the most physically demanding race days the 29 already-fatigued crews have experienced so far over seven acts of the Tour.
Posted on 24 Jul
Record turnout in Dr Irena Eris ORC European Championship Gdansk 2017
83 teams from 11 countries throughout Europe start racing on 26 July for four days of offshore and inshore competition After two days of measurement, registration and practice racing today and tomorrow, 83 teams from 11 countries throughout Europe will start racing on Wednesday 26 July for four days of offshore and inshore competition at the Dr Irena Eris ORC European Championship Gdansk 2017.
Posted on 24 Jul
Forelle Estates crowned SB20 UK Open National Champions
Several races were held in over 20 knots of wind, with some high octane action on the windward leeward course. Several races were held in over 20 knots of wind, with some high octane action on the windward leeward course.
Posted on 23 Jul
Barcelona glory for Oman Air but SAP Extreme Sailing Team go top
The crowds lining the shore could hear the cheers coming from Oman Air's GC32 as the team. The crowds lining the shore could hear the cheers coming from Oman Air's GC32 as the team, last year's runners up, celebrated topping the podium for the first time this season following a trio of thirds in the previous Acts.
Posted on 23 Jul
Team Oman Air win Extreme Sailing Series Barcelona Act 4 in style
An emphatic victory in the final race, which counted for double points, sealed glory for Phil Robertson and his team. An emphatic victory in the final race, which counted for double points, sealed glory for Phil Robertson and his team after three days of tense, high octane racing.
Posted on 23 Jul
Tour de France à la Voile – Patience pays in blowy Coastal Raid
The conditions proved perfect for Team SFS, skippered by Sofian Bouvet, who took control from the start. The conditions proved perfect for Team SFS, skippered by Sofian Bouvet, who took control from the start, handling their Diam 24 masterfully in the challenging conditions to glide across the finish line.
Posted on 23 Jul
Puerto Portals 52 Super Series – Ray and Rán’s Balearic re-run?
The regatta sees the triumphant return to the TP52 Class of recent America’s Cup winner Ray Davies. The regatta sees the triumphant return to the TP52 Class of recent America’s Cup winner Emirates Team New Zealand’s Ray Davies.
Posted on 23 Jul
Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Raceweek - closing with a full card of races
Another iffy start to the day, with an AP on shore. Another iffy start to the day, with an AP on shore. There were plenty of crew taking the opportunity to hang out at the back of the beach at the Cape Panwa Hotel (an eminently suitable spot for a bit of enforced idleness), but then the breeze came in and it was all hands on deck. Literally.
Posted on 23 Jul