Please select your home edition
Edition
InSunSport - International - GR

Tea Route record- Gitana 13 in Indian Ocean

by Gitana 13 Media on 21 Aug 2008
Gitana 13 © Gitana S.A. /Yvan Zedda www.zedda.com
The weather window selected by the crew of Gitana 13 to set out on the Tea Route record has proven to be the right one. Heading off from Hong Kong on Thursday 14th August at 07h55’32’’(UTC), following on from the influence of the tropical storm 'Kammuri' and prior to the arrival of typhoon 'Nuri', the maxi-catamaran has racked up a great time to the Sunda Strait, despite conditions which did little to favour performance. Passing through the passage last night, less than a week after setting off, this strait marks the entry into the Indian Ocean.

The Sunda Strait, which separates the Indonesian islands of Sumatra and Java, is now in the wake of Gitana 13. Last night, shortly after 0100 hours (UTC), the 33 metre maxi-catamaran slipped into this narrow 12 mile wide passage.

'The first part of this course was very tricky but we’ve come out of it rather well. Prior to setting out from Hong Kong, the most optimistic forecasts gave us 8 days to reach the Sunda Strait. In the end we covered the 2,000 miles of this initial section in 6 days 16 hours. It’s very satisfying, particularly as the weather didn’t really favour us; dishing out what felt like some rather interminable days sailing close-hauled and a rather long passage across the equator' resumed Lionel Lemonchois this morning.

This entrance into the Indian Ocean marks a change of rhythm for the sailors of Gitana Team. After a week spent in the closed waters of the China Sea and Java Sea, tacking upwind, Gitana 13 is now slipping along downwind on the steeper waters of the Indian Ocean. Benefiting from some well-established SE’ly tradewinds, the ten sailors will finally be able to express the potential of the maxi-catamaran .

'The SE’ly tradewinds are well and truly here! We’ve got 22 to 25 knots of breeze, which is enabling us to drive Gitana 13 at speeds close to 25-30 knots. The seas are building gradually and the atmosphere is wetter on deck now. The sailors on watch have swapped their T-shirts for foulies, which are better suited to these new sailing conditions. Everything seems to be in place to enable us to pass the Reunion Islands at a steady pace, some big surf awaits!' said the cheerful skipper of Gitana 13.

Weather analysis for the second part of the course:
The Indian Ocean Sylvain Mondon, loyal onshore router for the Gitana Team, explains the setting for the next 4,500 miles: 'The SE’ly tradewinds are well established in the Indian Ocean. These highly favourable winds will enable Lionel Lemonchois and his crew to maintain an average speed of around 25 knots throughout the first half of this ocean crossing. This regular tradewind air flow is currently being produced by two vast zones of high pressure: the first close to Australia and the second close to Africa.

These two systems are shifting slightly eastwards as they fill in and the second zone of high pressure will settle between the Kerguelen and Reunion islands and stretch right across the breadth of the Indian Ocean on Saturday 23rd August. A fine and slightly favourable SSE’ly swell is accompanying the maxi-catamaran so Gitana 13 should make fairly rapid progress over the next four days. Following on from that, they’ll have to line themselves up nicely in order to negotiate several passages of fronts to the south of Madagascar, prior to reaching the Cape of Good Hope. The second half of the crossing won’t be as direct and close-hauled sailing will prevail once more in increasingly big seas as they approach the African continent'.

A little history about the Tea Route
Beyond its commercial appeal, the Tea Route stood out during the XIXth century as one of the great nautical races. In 1868, Bernard Weymouth built the Thermopylae in Aberdeen, Scotland. On its maiden voyage the Thermopylae made it to Melbourne, Australia in 63 days, an incredible performance for the time. In order to challenge this record, the most famous clipper of all time, the Cutty Sark, was built in 1869, in Dumbarton, Scotland.

Today’s figures
Departure from Hong Kong: Thursday 14th August at 07h55’32’’ (UTC)
Thursday 21st August at 07h46’ (UTC)
Latitude: 07°11.75 S – Longitude: 103°28.65 E
Speed over 4 hrs: 26.3 knots – average speed since the start: 13.29 knots
Distance left to go: 11,000 miles

http://www.gitana-team.com
Bakewell-White Yacht DesignWildwind 2016 660x82Southern Spars - 100

Related Articles

British entries on podium as Clipper Race returns after 11 months
UK entries triumphed to take all three podium places in the toughest edition yet of the longest ocean race on the planet Thousands of spectators lined the River Thames and packed St Katharine Docks to welcome home over 250 crew, representing 44 different nationalities, many of whom have been at sea for eleven months racing between six continents in the only challenge of its kind for amateur sailors.
Posted today at 4:48 pm
LMAX Exchange wins the Clipper 2015-16 Round the World Yacht Race
LMAX Exchange was confirmed last night as winner of Clipper 2015-16 Round the World Yacht Race. LMAX Exchange, skippered by Frenchman Olivier Cardin, was confirmed last night as winner of the tenth edition of the world’s longest ocean race, the Clipper 2015-16 Round the World Yacht Race.
Posted today at 9:03 am
Clipper Race – Constant trimming and little sleep in the North Sea
There is little opportunity for tactical moves and the timings of tacks are crucial if teams want to make vital gains. After a downwind start with spinnakers trimmed in light airs against the tide off Den Helder on the Dutch coast yesterday, the fleet has been match racing across the North Sea towards the Thames Estuary.
Posted on 29 Jul
Debriefing the 2015-16 Clipper Round The World Race with Huw Fernie
Sail-World talked with Huw Fernie of Visit Seattle to learn more about a Clipper Round The World Race skipper’s life. Skipper Huw Fernie and his Visit Seattle crew took top honors in the Den Helder Northern Seas Challenge, marking their second podium finish during the 2015/16 Clipper Round The World Race. I recently caught up with Fernie to learn more about Visit Seattle’s success in the Den Helder Northern Seas Challenge, and to learn more about the life of a Clipper Round The World Race skipper.
Posted on 28 Jul
Finale of Clipper Race global series starts in The Netherlands
The 198nm race to London is going to be one of the most nail-biting yet with just six points separating the top teams After a Departure Ceremony from Willemsoord Marina and a Parade of Sail in the presence of Dutch Royal Navy ship ZrMs Luymes, the fleet started the final short sprint to London off the Dutch coast.
Posted on 28 Jul
Thousands of spectators expected to welcome home Clipper Race fleet
Hurricane winds, giant waves, freezing conditions, battered boats and tragedy fail to quell fighting spirit of the crew. The tenth edition of the famous biennial race for novice sailors led by professional skippers is regarded as the most challenging on record after the event endured the most extreme conditions it has ever faced in its 20-year history.
Posted on 28 Jul
America's Cup World Series - Ian Roman's images of Pompey
Ian Roman was in Portsmouth for the America's Cup World Series capturing the Royal visitors Top international photographer, Ian Roman was in Portsmouth for the America's Cup World Series and provided this second of two galleries of the racing across the three days of the regatta, taking in the Royal visitors.
Posted on 26 Jul
America’s Cup World Series – More final day images by Ingrid Abery
Ingrid Abery has provided this gallery of images from final day Ingrid Abery has provided this gallery of images from final day
Posted on 25 Jul
America’s Cup World Series – Final race day images by Ingrid Abery
Ingrid Abery provided this gallery of images from final day Ingrid Abery provided this gallery of images from final day
Posted on 25 Jul
LV America’s Cup World Series - Up and down for Groupama Team France
The new leader is none other than the local team lead by Sir Ben Ainslie, who was rallied along throughout the six races 2016 America’s Cup World Series - This weekend the overall ranking for the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series has been turned on its head and with the Portsmouth act complete, the new leader is none other than the local team lead by Sir Ben Ainslie, who was rallied along throughout the six races by strong support from a home crowd.
Posted on 25 Jul