Please select your home edition
Edition
Zhik ZKG

Vendee Globe - Frustrations for Mike Golding

by Sara Blackwell on 23 Jan 2013
Mike Golding, Gamesa - 2012 Vendee Globe Mike Golding Yacht Racing © http://www.mikegolding.com
Vendee Globe, 22 January 2013 12:05 GMT Mike Golding LIVE update:

Hi Mike, you are having a ding dong battle 700 miles from the Equator with Jean Le Cam, on the ranking at least what’s it like on the water?

Pretty frustrating at the moment, we got lifted last night, and we were sailing pretty fast straight towards the mark which is the way we want to go and I made various changes, and changed the setup of the boat, but actually as I speak now we are back on the wind, so not quite pointing at Brazil, but we are back on the wind, so pretty frustrating.

Mike have you heard what has happened to Jean-Pierre Dick, obviously you have some experience of losing a keel even closer to the finish?

Yes it is terrible news, that’s a lot more frustrating, it is a horrible experience and Jean-Pierre really deserves to do well in this race, he has been sailing a very good race, he has had various problems but has kept the boat going and it is very disappointing when someone like JP [Jean-Pierre Dick] or indeed anyone at this stage of the race, I think anyone going out like that is very sad indeed.

Mike my colleague Pierre-François Bonneau has a question....

Mike, you are the first sailor in the Vendée Globe to have lost a keel and to succeed to finish the Vendée Globe, at the time in 2005 did you imagine you could finish the race?


In 2005 I was 50 miles from the finish, my immediate reaction when I lost the keel was that this is the end of it, you cannot sail the boat, but quite quickly I worked out that with ballast I could sail the boat, and even though it was up wind to the finish, in fact it was nearer 90 miles by the time I sailed it, because I had to tack upwind to get to Les Sables d'Olonne, the boat will sail but I think the real problem is it is quite different being close to the finish like that, and in the position where Jean-Pierre is, he is a long way out and a long way from the finish and the reality is the boat is not very safe without the keel.

When something like that happens Mike, does it send shock through the fleet, how does it make you feel?

It does, I think everyone will be looking down in their keel pits and making sure everything is the way, or at least looks the way it should be, the trouble with these fabricated steel failures is there is pretty much no warning, you don’t really see anything, you don’t hear anything, you don’t feel anything, and then right at the end it tends to fail, it tends to release, it bends massively before it breaks, probably Jean-Pierre mentioned in his report he felt a gust of wind and he went out and he sails, the reality is I recall exactly the same experience, in hindsight I don’t think the wind increased at all, there was no gust, the keel was bending and then the bang is when it finally releases, so what happened to JP [Jean-Pierre] sounds extremely similar to what happened to me, I ended up quite confused about why the boat was heeling so much when the keel was seemingly in the right position.

Mike, we have been talking about the life span of these keels, what do you think about the design and the life span of these boats, and in this case particularly the keel?

A fabricated keel has the life span of one Vendée Globe, period. If it makes the finish it is a design success, if it breaks it is a design failure, unfortunately we have seen far too many design failures with fabricated steel keels. I championed several years ago changing the rule when I was President of the technical committee, I tried to change the rule to have forged steel keels which is pretty much the only way of guaranteeing, well not guaranteeing but reducing keel fatigue failures like this, unfortunately the votes missed by three or four votes out of a hundred people, as a result we have still got the fabricated forged and carbon variations, for me I chose to switch to a carbon keel, so I’m on a carbon keel, theoretically if the carbon keel is good, it is good for the life of the boat, theoretically [laughs].

Mike thank you very much for joining us and for all your thoughts on that and experience, I wish you well in the continued battle with Jean Le Cam and we will speak to you very soon.

OK thank you very Vendee Globe Mike Golding website

Related Articles

From Olympic flag to Olympic Gold and maybe another
The Sydney Olympics was a Sailing double 470 Gold event for Australia. Having won the 420 World Championship in 2000, the feeder class to the 470, while still at school in Australia young Matt Belcher was given the honour of carrying the Olympic flag during the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
Posted today at 7:26 pm
The Road to Rio now 99 days short
The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win. The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres, at some World championship events and Weymouth World Cup but for many crews: 'It's 106 miles to Chicago we got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses.' Whoops wrong movie.
Posted today at 3:09 pm
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
An interview with Jake Beattie about the 2016 Race to Alaska
In 2014, Jake Beattie and a few friends envisioned the Race to Alaska. Now, it’s time this wild race’s second edition. In 2014, Jake Beattie-the executive director of the Northwest Maritime Center in Port Townsend, Washington, and a few friends hatched the bold idea of a human-powered race to Ketchikan, Alaska, took flight. They decided that their human-powered race would start in Port Townsend, Washington and run to Ketchikan, by way of the inside passage between Vancouver Island and British Columbia.
Posted on 14 Apr
Children of the Internet, Rio and Hong Kong
I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. The kind of conversations I have with her run along these lines.... In the olden days we did not have television until I left school and they had a thing called print magazines, that reported events between two weeks and four months after they happened. And her sceptical response... Hoh! Daddy, Hoh!
Posted on 14 Apr
Go fast girls - 49er FX sailors Paris Henken and Helena Scutt
Paris Henken and Helena Scutt will be representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics, which will be their first Olympiad. American’s Paris Henken (20) and Helena Scutt (23) recently won a berth to represent the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the high-performance 49er FX skiff, a goal that the team has been working on for almost three years. While this is their first Games, writing them off as Olympic newbies would require ignoring their recent results and their strong teamwork.
Posted on 13 Apr
World Sailing Cup V3 - A Dead Rat in a Shoe or Spring Daffodils?
While a host of major sailing events go from strength to strength, the Sailing World Cup has very major issues. Last night my Irish better half was sitting beside me on the sofa watching an Australian version of the popular TV Cooking Program My Kitchen Rules on a tablet with her headphones while I was watching Diehard II for the seventeenth time (it’s a boy thing) on TV. She suddenly spluttered and laughed, took off her headphones and motioned for me to mute Diehard. (Seriously!!)
Posted on 9 Apr
Volvo Ocean Race appoints stadium racing pioneer as new CEO
Sail-World forecast the appointment of Mark Turner as Volvo Ocean Race CEO a month ago. We profiled Turner at that time. Sail-World forecast the appointment of Mark Turner as Volvo Ocean Race CEO a month ago. We profiled Turner at that time. Today his appointment has been confirmed.
Posted on 31 Mar
Large spectator fleet heading north for boat watching season
I’m absolutely not going to lay claim to the phrase, but it is insanely apt and hilarious all at the same time, however. I’m absolutely not going to lay claim to the phrase. It is insanely apt and hilarious, all at the same time, however. Well then, boat watching season is definitely upon us once more. The whales will soon be gathering again off the coast of Queensland to observe all manner of racing and cruising craft as they head North for a Winter in the sun.
Posted on 29 Mar
Laser creator Ian Bruce passes away (1933 - 2016)
Ian Bruce, driving force behind the Laser dinghy, sadly passed away at his daughter's home on Monday March 21 2016. Ian Bruce, driving force behind the Laser dinghy, sadly passed away at his daughter's home on Monday March 21 2016. His legacy to our sport, Canadian sailing and his beloved Royal St. Lawrence Yacht Club will be praised and honoured for years to come.
Posted on 24 Mar
Barz Optics - FloatersNorth Technology - Southern SparsNaiad