Please select your home edition
Edition
InSunSport - NZ

Vendee Globe - Slow, steady progress for Mike Golding

by Emily Caroe on 19 Jan 2013
17 Jan Last Breakfast, Mike Golding onboard Gamesa - 2012 Vendee Globe Mike Golding Yacht Racing © http://www.mikegolding.com
In the Vendee Globe, Mike Golding continues to make relatively slow, but steady progress in light to moderate NE’ly winds. Golding and his long time arch-rival, Jean Le Cam, are now on opposite tacks with the British skippering closing down miles steadily on the French sailor who is sailing gently NE, away from Rio which is just 110 miles to his NW.

The lateral split between the duo is now 500 miles but from his offshore position Golding is gaining leverage on Le Cam all the time and on the 0400hrs UTC ranking, he was just 23 miles behind (in terms of distance to finish). So Golding has made up 60 miles on Le Cam since the same time yesterday. Gamesa was making just over 10kts in a 12-14kts breeze whilst Le Cam is slower and was making just 5kts at times during the night.

Golding largely has his rivals under control. Both Arnaud Boissieres (Akenas Verandas) and Dominique Wavre (Mirabaud) are nearly on the same latitude as him, but both will struggle with the same situation as Le Cam, ahead of them all, being upwind with a poor angle on port tack when they try to get north.

Mike should be progressively getting into stronger, more lifted breeze as he climbs north of the high pressure.

Mike sent this email last night:

Last Breakfast

This morning, in an experiment, I enjoyed scrambled eggs on toast which was both good, and a nice break from my normal cereals. In truth this was not an exploration brought on by my culinary curiosity, but the beginnings of a worrying period in a long race like this, when it seems like everything on board is worn out, or running out. I have only maybe six servings of cereal remaining, not a crisis, but I will need to be creative with what remains, if I am to have any comfort over the final weeks.

We pack the boat with food, fuel and spares for, say, a 90 day race, which is normal. In such a competitive fleet we all push the limits and try to minimise our load weight. However when times are tough we think little of double-portioning a meal, or burning the heater, or running the engine to maintain a better cabin temperature. But now, as we approach the final stages of the race any such previous excesses (and there have been very few) all come back to haunt you – and the paranoia that you won’t/can’t make the finish in Les Sables d'Olonne starts to ring strongly in your thoughts.

If I were starting on a passage home from Rio de Janeiro today, and what I have in terms of food, spares and fuel was presented to me on the dock, I would laugh – because it's just not sufficient. But out here, 400 miles east into the Atlantic, heading north with the majority of my fourth Vendée Globe behind me, I have no option but to make ends meet.

Running out of cereal is one thing, but since our hydrogenerator control box nearly burst into flames as we entered the Southern Ocean going South, fuel has been the primary concern. We chose not to make a huge hogwash about it, others seemed so much worse off then we did at the time, and we still do have fuel which we think will be sufficient. But like the cereal - and pretty much everything else now – it's going to be a close run thing.

Still, if I have to eat marmalade and pickle for the last week of the race then that is what I will do. But no power equals no auto pilot, lights, navigation systems, AIS, active echo, keel etc…. In Biscay - in Feb, really?! That is too much and not very safe or seaman like. But in common with every other Vendée competitor, it is my inbuilt need to complete (a form of madness?), we simply must close this circle and finish so we can once again enjoy the feeling and emotion of that 20 minute passage through the canal into Les Sables d'Olonne.

Perhaps this time the paranoia is even further heightened by the knowledge that this is my last expression of such madness…. and I bloody well mean it this time! Vendee Globe Mike Golding website
Southern Spars - 100InSunSport - NZBakewell-White Yacht Design

Related Articles

Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 2
Yachting NZ's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is unprecedented Yachting New Zealand's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is without precedent. Subject to Appeal, the Kiwis have signaled that they will reject 30% of the positions gained in the ISAF World Sailing Championships in Santander in 2014.
Posted on 22 May
Gladwell's Line - World Sailing changes tack after IOC windshift
Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick. Every blow well earned over issues such as the pollution at Rio, the Israeli exclusion abomination plus a few more. But now World Sailing is getting it right.
Posted on 21 May
Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 1
Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving its goals Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving goals set in the Olympic Commission report of 2010. Around 64 countries are expected to be represented in Rio de Janeiro in August. That is a slight increase on Qingdao and Weymouth, but more importantly a full regional qualification system is now in place
Posted on 19 May
Taming the beast-a conversation with Stuart Meurer of Parker Hannifin
While AC72 cats were fast, they difficult to control, so Oracle partnered with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way. If you watched videos of the AC72s racing in the 34th America’s Cup (2013), you’re familiar with the mind-boggling speeds that are possible when wingsail-powered catamarans switch from displacement sailing to foiling mode. While foiling is fast, there’s no disguising the platform’s inherent instability. Now, Oracle Team USA has teamed up with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way.
Posted on 18 May
From foiling Moths to Olympic starting lines-a Q&A with Bora Gulari
Bora Gulari’s is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class, along with teammate Louisa Chafee. Bora Gulari (USA) has made a strong name for himself within high-performance sailing circles, with wins at the 2009 and 2013 Moth Worlds. In between, he broke the 30-knort barrier and was the 2009 US SAILING Rolex Yachtsman of the Year. His latest challenge is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class as skipper, along with his teammate Louisa Chafee.
Posted on 12 May
Concern for Zika at Rio Olympics is now deadly serious
Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, or the Rio Olympics. Many others have, and they were apt, but things have changed. So here now we have a situation where one man, Associate Professor Amir Attaran, who does have a more than decent string of letters after his name, is bringing nearly as many facts to bear as references at the article's end
Posted on 12 May
The importance of being Alive
Since buying the stunningly pretty Reichel-Pugh canting keel 66-footer, and re-naming her Alive, Since buying the stunningly pretty Reichel-Pugh canting keel 66-footer, and re-naming her Alive, the team have lined up for a lot of things, won plenty and nabbed a record, as well. She’s presently in a yard in the Philippines having a minor refit in readiness for the Australian season. It will commence with the upcoming Brisbane to Keppel and then head sharply into this year’s Hobart.
Posted on 10 May
Zhik - The brand born of a notion, not its history
here is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline is officially marketed as Made For Water There is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline has been officially marketed as Made For Water, and this is precisely what the company has done for the last eight years before the succinct and apt strapline came from out of R&D and into mainstream visibility.
Posted on 8 May
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