Please select your home edition
Edition
Auckland On Water Boat Show

Compounding Vendee Globe blues—Sailing news from the U.S. and beyond

by David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor on 7 Jan 2013
Bernard Stamm, Cheminees Poujoulat - 2012 Vendee Globe TH Martinez/Sea&Co/onEdition
You know that things are tough when you get kicked out of a Grand Prix solo around-the-world race that you had been leading at several points, but it’s safe to say that things have really gone to Hades in a hand basket when you collide with an unidentified floating object (UFO) and destroy several key systems days later. But sadly, such is Bernard Stamm’s reality in the ongoing, nonstop and alone Vendee Globe Race.


Some backstory. Stamm decided to continue racing, despite the news of his disqualification for 'receiving outside assistance' (a Russian sailor boarded Stamm’s IMOCA 60 'Cheminées Poujoulat' uninvited during an anchor-dragging incident that involved a Russian-flagged research vessel), only to hit a UFO a few days later. The collision destroyed his portside hydrogenerator. Unfortunately for Stamm, his other hydrogenerator is also on the fritz, meaning that the Swiss-flagged sailor will need to save any and all remaining juice for his autopilots. Further compounding his situation is the fact that he’s low on fuel and that he’s roughly 1,000 miles from Cape Horn. According to reports, his team is investigating any and all possibilities.





The one bright spot for Stamm is that the International Jury has decided to re-open his case after receiving a skipper’s petition that was signed by fourteen of the other competing skippers in the 2012/2013 Vendee Globe. The bad news, however, is his fuel situation. Stay tuned for more from Stamm, as it unfurls.


Meanwhile, at the front of the Vendee pack, Francois Gabart ('Macif') continues to hold his advantage over Armel Le Cleac’h ('Banque Populaire'). At the time of this writing, Gabart was leading Le Cleac’h by more than 40 miles; interestingly, the leading duo have slowed compared to the pursuing pack thanks to lighter winds and higher angles of attack.





'There isn’t that much wind but honestly, if there were more, I’m not sure we’d go faster,' reported Gabart. 'We need to find the right position to face the depression that is coming. Sailing against the wind is always more difficult, it’s easy to understand, it’s just not a natural situation. There are many things that need to be anticipated and sometimes, the weather files aren’t very accurate. It takes instinct, too.'


Jean-Pierre Dick ('Virbac Paprec 3'), who is currently sitting in third place, has enjoyed a fast few days compared to the leaders and has recently reduced his mileage deficit by nearly two hundred miles. Get the full story, and don’t miss all the great multimedia skipper reports, inside this issue.


Meanwhile, in Cup news, Emirates Team New Zealand (ETNZ) has released a fine look into the sort of physical fitness that’s required to race aboard an AC72 wingsail-powered catamaran. In their interesting multimedia report, ETNZ shows how they are employing the latest advances in sailing-specific training to best prepare for the 34th America’s Cup, which will take place this September on San Francisco Bay. Trust me, your arms will ache from just watching ETNZ’s workout routine!





Also inside, get the wrap-up reports from the Governor’s Cup and the Rose Bowl Regatta, and don’t miss the latest on the new GC32 class of catamarans. Giddyap!


May the four winds blow you safely home,

Bakewell-White Yacht DesignT Clewring AC72Zhik Dinghy 660x82

Related Articles

Rio 2016 - America's Cup champ says Paralympic racing is closest ever
Twice America’s Cup champion, Rick Dodson is extremely impressed with the standard of racing in the three man Sonar Twice America’s Cup champion, Rick Dodson is extremely impressed with the standard of racing in the three man Sonar keelboat class at the 2016 Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro. The regatta is being held in Guanabara Bay on three of the courses used for the Olympic Sailing Regatta in August.
Posted on 13 Sep
Debriefing the Rio 2016 Olympics with Team USA’s Helena Scutt
I talked with Team USA’s Helena Scutt to hear about her Olympic experience, and to learn more about her post-Rio plans. The 49erFX was introduced to Olympic circles when it replaced the Women’s Match Racing event following the 2012 Games. Not surprisingly, it drew high-performance sailors for the Rio 2016 Olympics, including Team USA’s Paris Henken and Helena Scutt. While Henken and Scutt were Olympic first-timers, they put on a strong show. I caught up with Scutt to hear more about her Olympic experience.
Posted on 8 Sep
A Q&A with Peter Bresnan ONE Palma’s founder and director
Sail-World interviewed ONE Palma’s founder Peter Bresnan to learn about the company’s partnership with McConaghy Boats For the past eight years, ONE Palma (formerly OneSails Spain) has been building a strong name, first as a sailmaker and later with refit work. Recently, ONE Palma and McConaghy Boats-legendary boatbuilders who have crafted some of the planet’s fastest sailboats-entered a business partnership. I caught up with Peter Bresnan, ONE Palma’s founder and director, to learn more about this new direction.
Posted on 2 Sep
America's Cup - Emirates Team NZ train late on the Waitemata Harbour
Emirates Team NZ were out for a training session that ran into the early Thursday evening. Emirates Team NZ were out for a training session that ran into the early Thursday evening. The team were sailing their recently launched AC45 Surrogate test boat which features an articulated rudder gantry - taking the AC45 close to the geometry of the AC50 to be used in the 2017 America's Cup.
Posted on 1 Sep
Dateline Rio - Sailing Olympics review - as good as it gets?
The Rio Sailing Olympics was widely judged to have been the best of recent times. The Rio Sailing Olympics was widely judged to have been the best of recent times. The weather was better than Weymouth and Qingdao, the courses more varied, but from a working media perspective, it was the people running the Rio regatta who really made the difference.
Posted on 26 Aug
Rio 2016 - Plain speaking by triple-medalist on Olympic sailing moves
Triple Olympic medalist, Santiago Lange has been on the sharp end of changes made to Olympic classes and formats Santiago Lange, a six-time Olympian and Bronze medallist in the 2004 and 2008 Olympics, won his third medal – Gold sailing in the Nacra 17 class. With that length of experience at an Olympic level, having sailed the Laser, Tornado and now Nacra 17 classes his comments on the future shape of the Olympic regatta was one of the highlights of the Medallists Media Conferences.
Posted on 25 Aug
An Q&A with Steve and Heidi Benjamin about the NYYC’s 2016 Queen’s Cup
Sail-World caught up with Steve and Heidi Benjamin to learn more about Heidi’s historic win in the NYYC’s Queen’s Cup. When it comes to U.S. Grand Prix sailing, it’s hard not to encounter the names of Steve and Heidi Benjamin. The two highly polished sailors have been successfully campaigning their series of yachts, named SPOOKIE, for years, starting first with a Carkeek 40 and progressing to their TP52. I caught up with Steve and Heidi to learn more about Heidi’s historic win in the NYYC’s Queen’s Cup
Posted on 19 Aug
Rio 2016 - Images of the penultimate race in the Finns - Scott wins
Sail-World's Richard Gladwell was on the water for the final race of the Qualifying Series of the Mens Finn Sail-World's Richard Gladwell was on the water for the final race of the Qualifying Series of the Mens Finn, in what potentially could have been Giles Scott's (GBR) Gold medal winning race. In the end, the current world champion won in style.
Posted on 15 Aug
Rio 2016 - Images from the Mens RS:X Medal Race
Sail-World's NZ Editor, Richard Gladwell, was on the water at the Medal Race for the RS:X class Sail-World's NZ Editor, Richard Gladwell, was on the water at the Medal Race for the RS:X class won before the race by Dorian van Rijsselberghe (NED) without needing points from the Medal Race. Nick Dempsey (GBR) was second on a similar basis.
Posted on 15 Aug
Rio 2016 - Sailors talk of Life at the Extreme on the Atlantic Ocean
Certainly the Volvo Ocean Race catchcry of Life at the Extreme is not a phrase associated with the Sailing Olympics. The 470 crews were suffering the mixed emotions of survival of an extreme test by nature, the cold, and for some elation at their placings, after Thursday's battle for survival. In conditions that looked more out of the Volvo Ocean Race, than an Olympic sailing regatta, crews battled 20kt plus winds and Atlantic Ocean rollers that towered up to four metres.
Posted on 13 Aug