sail-world.com -- Vendee Globe - Out of the final calm and into the breeze + Video
Vendee Globe - Out of the final calm and into the breeze + Video
Thu, 21 Feb 2013
In the Vendee Globe, less than fifty miles to the northwest of La Corruna, Spain Alessandro di Benedetto on Team Plastique is now counting down the final miles to the finish, expecting to cross the famous line off the Nouch buoy on Friday morning. The conditions for his finish will not be easy.
Di Benedetto had another demanding night with no sleep due to the variable winds which boxed the compass on several occasions – working all the way around 360 degrees – but also having to keep a wary eye out for the shipping traffic off the busy NW corner of Spain, a gateway from the Mediterranean to the Atlantic and beyond.
Speaking this morning Di Benedetto shrugged off his lack of sleep and was very upbeat, enjoying the spring sunshine as the breeze picked up, and with it, his speeds directly towards his own home port of Les Sables d’Olonne where a huge welcome will await the very popular skipper who has stolen so many hearts over his 103 days at sea.
.Di Benedetto’s finishing miles, across the Bay of Biscay are likely to be upwind in a breeze which will build to over 25-30kts with some unpleasant seas. The Franco-Italian skipper explained to Race HQ this morning.
' I have some wind now, 11-16kts of wind and so the boat is making between 10 and 12 knots of average speed. And I have some sunshine on my starboard side, also a lot of cargo ships. The night was a bit complicated then. I did not have any sleep and I had to make some time on the Code Zero because the wind was very light. And sometimes the wind came up and in from the wrong side and so it came round 360 degrees at times, several times I had to pay attention to this, and also to avoid the cargo ships. Now I am going a little more into the Bay of Biscay and so we will start to see more fishing boats and less cargo ships. Conditions are fine and I have just had my last rice pudding which I made yesterday with coffee and milk.
So I hope to be in Les Sables d’Olonne, across the finish line within two days.
I really know the boat well now and can make small trim changes which I know will make one tenth of a knot of difference and it all counts.
I feel great with the boat. I took some time to have a good relationship with the boat, but more and more I have felt better and better with the boat and I will be sad to step off. But I will see her every day at the marina in Les Sables d’Olonne where she lives.'