Please select your home edition
Edition
RS Sailing 728x90

Mini Transat - Low speed disrupts the fleet

by Solene Rennuit on 27 Nov 2013
Rémi Fermin (741 - Boréal) - 2013 Mini Transat Jacques Vapillon / Mini Transat 2013
In the Mini Transat, the next few hours are likely to be decisive. An axis of low pressure sits slightly to the north of the fleet, not content with causing a rupture in the trade winds, it could cause a real divide between the leading boats and their pursuers. Their routing strategies are looking very different depending on whether they are in one camp or the other.

Attention, trough! There's a recalcitrant donkey backed into the pressure field of the trade winds that's now creating mayhem on the road to Guadeloupe. It was he who generated the erratic light winds affecting the fleet, preventing the normal development of the trade winds that are usually powered by two anticyclones, over the Azores and Bermuda, to the north of the route. Those who might be tempted to head further south to escape his influence may find themselves having to pay a price. So that today, the safest route, the most obvious route, would be the closest to the great circle. For the former, the rule is simple: you have to win in the west. Beyond 44°W, the trade winds seems to be recovering and are expected to finally provide a few days of averages worthy of a Mini downwind, ie into double digits. But for others its about as clear as mud : in this famous trough, a small depression should form before heading to the north. This means, to its immediate south, light westerly or northwesterly winds, areas of flat calm, and sudden short storms! Bascially everything you need to try the patience of the most seasoned singlehander. For those that fail to make it to the the right side of this low pressure area in time, ie in the west, the solution could then be plunging southward. North or south, the puzzle is huge.

A few miles closerTo give an idea of the instability of the conditions, we just have to consider the positions and speeds of the competitors around Thomas Guichard (Carrefour Bretagne). While he is sailing at more than seven knots, Raphaela Le Gouvello (Respectocean.com), Yoann Tricault (Schlüter Systems) and Jonas Gerkens (Netwerk 2) are less than 15 miles to the north and are barely exceeding a painful three knots. And in the south, Jean-Loup Chenard (Istuardo) and Raphael Marchant (Soréal Ilou) are making around two knots. At the front of the race, the best planning could be credited to Justine Mettraux (TeamWork), who is now more than 50 miles ahead of Simon Koster (Go 4 It) and 120 head of Jean -Baptiste Lemaire (L’œuvre du Marin Breton). In the prototypes Rémi Fermin (Boreal) and the duo of Bruno Garcia ( Sampaquita ) and Bertrand Delesne (Proto TeamWork) are separated laterally by more than 200 miles.

It will be interesting to see if Rémi will be able to escape the clutches of the low pressures : if successful, he could benefit from a better wind angle and contain the northerners. At the other end of the spectrum ... While Aymeric Belloir (Tout le Monde chante contre le Cancer) continues alone, he is positioned level with Bruno Garcia in terms of distance to the goal, and it is still clamped between Giancarlo Pedote (Prysmian) and Benoît Marie (benoitmarie.com) who still manages to keep his opponent at a distance.. However, if these two hold out to the end of the road, we will be guaranteed to have a new double prototype Mini Transat winner in the foot steps of Karen Liquid, which won in 1997 and 1999. 667 crossed the line as the winner in 2009, while 747 claimed victory in 2011. But from Rémi Fermin to Bertrand Delesne, there are three who will do anything for a new number to be inscribed on the roll call of Mini victors.

Cegelec / Eurovia Ranking (prototypes) at 16.00 (GMT +1)

1. Benoit Marie (667 – benoitmarie.com) with 1178 nm to finish
2. Giancarlo Pedote (747 – Prysmian) + 17.1 nm
3. Rémi Fermin (741 – Boréal) + 64.7 nm
4. Bruno Garcia (240 – Sampaquita) + 98.7 nm
5. Bertrand Delesne (754 – TeamWork Proto) + 114.6 nm

Yslab Ranking (series boats) at 16.00 (GMT +1)

1. Aymeric Belloir (810 – Tout le Monde chante contre le Cancer) with 1278 nm to finish
2. Justine Mettraux (824 - TeamWork) + 98.8 nm
3. Simon Koster (819 – Go 4 it) + 151 nm
4. Jean-Baptiste Lemaire (607 – Œuvre du Marin Breton) + 220.8 nm
5. Tanguy Le Turquais (599 – Terréal Rêve d’enfance) + 309.1 Mini Transat website
Insun - AC ProgramSelden 660x82Mariners Museum 660x82

Related Articles

Team Brunel started in Volvo Ocean Race
The bay off the Alicante sea front was crowded with hundreds of spectator boats, ringing a short inshore race course The fleet of seven of the best sailing teams in the world including Team Brunel started Leg 1, a 1,450 nautical mile sprint to Lisbon, Portugal in bright sunshine and a 15-20 knot Easterly breeze.
Posted today at 4:43 pm
Intensity and action at highest level as Volvo Ocean Race Leg 1 starts
The fleet of seven of the best sailing teams in the world started Leg one, a 1,450nm sprint to Lisbon, Portugal The highlight came on the approach to the final turning mark before leaving the bay, when Dongfeng Race Team came screaming in on a collision course with Team Brunel and MAPFRE, both of whom were forced into a quick gybe to avoid the right of way Chinese boat.
Posted today at 4:26 pm
Rolex Middle Sea Race – Day 2 – The calm before the storm
While the going has been slow so far, gale force winds are still forecast to arrive during the small hours of Monday. Pressing on through the sticky conditions, Rambler had reached Stromboli this afternoon with the majority of the fleet still to pass through the Messina Strait.
Posted today at 4:11 pm
Vestas 11th Hour Racing begin the Volvo Ocean Race
The first ocean leg of the Volvo Ocean Race from Alicante, Spain, to Lisbon, Portugal started on Sunday. The 1450nm course will take the seven competing teams through the Strait of Gibraltar and around the small island of Porto Santo, close to Madeira, before heading directly to Lisbon.
Posted today at 3:51 pm
Volvo Ocean Race – Tienpont back to skipper team AkzoNobel for Leg 1
A total of eight sailors will be on board for the 1,450 nautical mile leg to Lisbon – including Dutchman Tienpont. On Friday evening, Tienpont won an arbitration judgement allowing him to return to the team and just hours before start time, the team submitted an updated crew list with Tienpont leading a newly constituted squad.
Posted today at 3:33 pm
Volvo Ocean Race – The dock walk in Alicante
Interviews with plenty of sailors as they board their boats, including David Witt who has 'lent' AkzoNobel a crew member It's go time! The first confirmation on the AkzoNobel crew list following Tienpont winning his court case and return to the team, leaving Brad Jackson and Jules in Spain.
Posted today at 2:30 pm
Clipper World Yacht Race – Day 18, Race 2 – And then there was one
Currently making good progress at 10.2 knots directly to Cape Town, priority is to make it into port with time to rest Skipper Roy Taylor and the PSP Logistics crew passed on their hearty congratulations to Greenings and Skipper Andy Woodruff on its second win, to Skipper Dale Smyth and Dare To Lead on securing second place and doubling its race points and to Skipper Gaëtan Thomas and his ‘pirates’ on board Garmin for securing third and their first podium finish.
Posted today at 12:17 pm
Team Brunel ready for Volvo Ocean Race start
Many of the participating teams have trained in Lisbon in recent weeks, including Team Brunel. Team Brunel starts on Sunday afternoon with the other six participating boats in the Volvo Ocean Race. Dutch skipper Bouwe Bekking and his team are ready.
Posted today at 12:12 pm
Volvo Ocean Race insights – First timers to arch rivals
From females to first timers, sea sickness to sailing with arch rivals, there is a lot to cover with this talented bunch There was plenty happening in the village yesterday; another change to the AkzoNobel skipper, and for myself plenty more catch ups with sailors who are all keen to get out there and do what they do best.
Posted today at 10:00 am
Clipper Race - Unicef arrives into Cape Town after challenging race
Unicef crossed line at 23:19:27 local South African time (21:19:27 UTC) on Saturday evening, having sailed over 3500nm Unicef crossed the line at 23:19:27 local South African time (21:19:27 UTC) on Saturday evening, having sailed over 3500nm, resulting in an eleventh placed finish in the Stormhoek Race to the Cape of Storms.
Posted today at 7:34 am