Please select your home edition
Edition
Bakewell-White Yacht Design

Mini Transat - Sunshine accompanies fleet out of Sada estuary

by Solene Rennuit on 14 Nov 2013
Start of the 2013 Mini Transat ©Jacques Vapillon / Mini Transat 2013
It was a beautiful start for the Mini Transat... it was as though the elements had finally come together to reward the tenacity of the players. A light north wind and welcome rays of sunshine accompanied the fleet out of the Sada estuary before spinnakers could be hoisted, as the singlehanders swept past the Tower of Hercules and then La Coruna.

Good start. At 9:45, Patrick Maurin, the President of the Race Committee liberated the fleet of 73 singlhanders who had come to the starting line. Missing were Jaanus Tamme (Ropeye) and Elise Bakhoum (Qéramix), who felt that they had already exhausted their emotional reserves and could do no more. The Belgian Sophie de Clercq (Ville de Marseillan) had been undecided about whether she will be able to start the second stage. For the past two days she has been subject to sudden spells of dizziness and has been consulting with medical advisors at Sada Hospital who have not yet been able to identify a specific cause for her discomfort. In the end, knowing that she could be putting others into danger if she went ahead, Sophie decided, in agreement with the race organisers, to throw in the towel. Knowing how to identify and assess the risks that we take for oneself and for others is all part of being a good sailor. In Sophie the Mini Transat loses one of the competitors who truly represent the essence of the race.

Out of the start line, it was Ludovic Méchin (Paris Texas) that got this tip of his bow over the line first, while in series boats Alberto Bona (Onelinesim.it) also got an advantage over the rest of the fleet. As the northerly wind quickly increased by a few knots, the situation was changing rapidly and it wasn't long before the big guns were making their presence known at the front of the fleets. By the entrance to the bay, it was Gwénolé Gahinet (Watever / Logways) who led the fleet, followed by Nicolas Boidevezi (Nature Addicts) and Louis Segre (Roll My Chicken). In the series boats, Yannick Le Clech (Diaoulic 692) got the better of Ian Lipinski (Pas de futur sans Numérique). For Yannick it was a nice nod to his friend Damien Cloarec, who was forced to abandon the race due to a persistent tendinitis. These guys from the Bay of Morlaix truly know what brotherhood means.

Little by little the wind rose and Nicolas Boidevezi rounded Cape Finisterre at 16.00 with a comfortable lead over his rivals having already gained a buffer of eight miles bonus on a pack led by Benoît Marie (benoitmarie.com) and Giancarlo Pedote (Prysmian), the speeds of the leading group regularly hitting 17 to 18 knots. Jonas Gerkens (Netwerk 2) on his Pogo was mising it up with the prototype fleet at an average speed of more than 12 knots. The other leaders, in descending order, obviously opted for caution with Bertrand Delesne (TeamWork Proto) heading Gwénolé Gahinet . Finally, at the back of the fleet, several competitors have made it clear they will be taking their own route. For example, Yoann Tricault (Schulter Systems) clearly has no intention of being dictated to by the leaders and had been gradually picking up pace as he finds his feet. The key is to arrive first. Bearing in mind that anyone needing to make a stopover for repairs is required to layover for a minimum of twelve hour stopover its easy to see how quickly places can be gained by those who manage their boats best.

Obviously, putting the boats through such tough conditions has an impact on equipment. Some competitors have already reported damage. Annabelle Boudinot (Agro 650) broke her bowsprit but has a spare sprit on board and should be able to fix it quickly. Axel Tréhin (Ty Startigenn) has suffered the same punishment and will try to jury rig with equipment he has at hand to avoid a forced stop. However, Joel Miro Garcia (Dame Argo) has headed into the port of Camarinas after informing a support boat that he has broken one of his two rudders.

Between the Sisargas Islands, west of La Coruna, and the southern tip of Cape Finisterre, the coast has earned the nickname of 'The Coast of Death'. It is understandable that some have chosen to push their machines hard to get this rugged landscape, ethat can give those of a nervous disposition an unpleasant frisson, well and truly behind their transoms. Nevertheless, there are still a lot of miles ahead of them and, as the fleet was wisely reminded by the routing information and the good advice that accompanied it for the Ministes, 'The important thing is not to go fast for four hours, but to keep up a good steady pace for four days or more ... ' Especially since it seems that the fleet is on track to maintain these strong conditions all the way to the islands of Lanzarote and La Palma. Others reply that you have to make hay while the sun shines. To each his own truth ... one thing is certain, only the winner will be right.

Rankings on 13 novembre at 16.00 (TU+1)

Eurovia Cegelec Ranking (Prototypes)

1 Nicolas Boidevezi (Nature Addicts) 3615.8 miles to finish
2 Benoît Marie (benoitmarie.com) + 8.5 milles from leader
3 Giancarlo Pedote (Prysmian) +10.5 miles
4 Bertrand Delesne (TeamWork Proto) +11.8 miles
5 Ludovic Méchin (Paris Texas) +12.6 miles

Yslab Ranking (Series Boats)

1 Jonas Gerkens (Netwerk 2) 3628.6 miles to finish
2 Joël Miro Garcia (Dame Argo) +1.2 miles from leader
3 Simon Koster (Go 4 it) +1.5 miles
4 Jean-Loup Chenard (jlchenard.com) +1.8 miles
5 Alberto Bona (Onelinesim.it) +2.5 Mini Transat website
InSunSport - NZKilwell - 3Bakewell-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
Will NZ's most successful Olympic Sailing event cop the Selection axe?
New Zealand qualified in all ten of the 2016 Olympic events at the first round of Qualifying in Santander Spain New Zealand qualified in all ten of the 2016 Olympic events at the first round of Qualifying in Santander Spain in September 2014. In two of those the RS:X Windsurfing event, New Zealand is unlikely to be represented in the Men's event, and in the Women's event, Natalia Kosinska would appear to be a borderline selection.
Posted on 2 May