sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : Vendee Globe - Mike Golding still on the hunt for opportunities
Vendee Globe - Mike Golding still on the hunt for opportunities

'Gamesa skippered by Mike Golding'    Lloyd Images ©
After 32 days at sea in the Vendee Globe, Briton's Mike Golding continues to hunt for opportunities. The last few days have not been easy for Mike in the Indian Ocean, passing through the small landmark of one month.

After a spell riding a beneficial low pressure trough which actually saw Gamesa, SynerCiel and Mirabaud gaining on the leaders, the last few days the bungee elastic has stretched again and miles have inevitably been lost. The chasing pack of three are making just 10-12knots on average, with the front runners on 19-20knots.

For Mike it is a bit hard to take, seeing the distance to leaders rise with each ranking report, but he and his long time rivals are now in a completely different weather system.

On Monday when Francois Gabart was setting a new 24 hour distance record at 545.3 miles and the 500 miles barrier was broken eight times by three different skippers, Mike was in conditions which were certainly not ideal to set any speed records.

More recently they have been in very confused winds and seas and it has been quite intense and stressful. Today Golding is 800 miles behind the leader, but Mike remains upbeat and always looking for opportunities. In 2004-5 he made up more than 600 miles in The South and went on to lead the race after Cape Horn so he is completely pragmatic when it comes to the current situation.

That said Golding is not prepared to sit and wait to see what happens. He has made the choice to head NE to rendezvous with an active low pressure system ‘Claudia’ which has the potential to give him a faster ride to the south of Australia.

Mike's Boat Captain, Graham 'Gringo' Tourell, talks through the weather for the rest of the week:

December 13th, 2012 -  Vendee Globe ©  
'Looking forward and up to the end of the week, for the leaders, it's a straight drag race. The five lead boats are going to thunder towards the next Ice Gate, which is 'West Australia', down at 46 degrees south, in north westerly breezes. It doesn't look as if there is anything too complicated between them and the gate. They will then be heading towards 'East Australia' Gate at 50 degrees south.

The leaders have around 600 miles to the nearest point of the gate right now, which at this rate they will reach in under two days or so. They'll be in 25 knots SWly which will then become Wly. There might be some variance in the leaders' course to position themselves as they set up their route for this Gate, but there isn't much opportunity for tactical gains.

'For Mike and Jean [Le Cam], for the next 24h, they should end up picking up a W/SWly breeze. Hopefully, Mike won't get caught up in the variable conditions associated with the high pressure and he'll end up tagging into the Wly breeze on the back end of the low to the SE of the three boats. To add salt to the wound, Jean and Mike are going to be in very confused seas until they are settled into the W/SWly breeze, which should then take them fairly happily towards the Gate, whereas the leaders will be in a more organised sea and consistent winds. The crucial thing for the pack of three [including Dominique Wavre] now is whether or not this little high affects them over the next 12-24 hours.

'Mike is currently on Genoa and Full Main and doing about 13 knots so I am hoping that he will just ride this without dropping off the back and not lose too many valuable miles.

'Mike's focus now is the battle he has on his hands with Jean. It is easy to be distracted by the leaders’ boats speeds and averages, but they are in a different weather system. His eyes must be on those boats close to him.'

Gamesa’s alternative energy sources – two hydrogenerators and a small expanse of solar panels on the cockpit floor behind Mike’s steering position - have proven a big success so far in the race. For most of the 32 days at sea, the boat has been self sufficient, able to rely on the power made by the hydrogenerators and the solar panels enabling Golding to preserve his diesel.

Graham Tourell, Golding's Boat Captain, explains the pros and cons, and the workings of the hydros and solar panels.

Gamesa Solar Panels -  Lloyd Images_©  
When did you start looking at these energy sources and actually adopt them on Gamesa?

We started looking more closely at hydrogenerators after the Barcelona World Race. Feedback from the boats that had used hydrogenerators during that race was very positive indeed.

Prior to that I had actually spent some time talking to JC who was Yannick Bestaven’s boat captain during the last Vendée Globe. Yannick’s sponsor, Aquarelle, is the main developer and manufacturer of hydrogenerators and they were building prototypes for his boat. Yannick had already done the Quebec-St Malo without running his engine at all. While we knew they were a massive bonus, they were relatively unproven in terms of sea miles.

For our project, we decided to install them for the Transat Jacques Vabre [2011] but to be fair we did not get a lot of information from the TJV or the Transat BtoB because one of the hydrogenerators got swiped off the back of the boat and smashed and the other one packed up. What that did tell us was that we should refine the periods that we put them up and down.

When can they be used?

On Gamesa, we put them up and down at the same time as the trim tab, which is down at around eight kts of boat speed and up at around 16-17kts. You could keep them down for longer, but if you hit any debris there is no question that you would lose or seriously damage them. Below eight knots creates too much drag which is also why we bring the trim tab up at slow speeds.

Our experience in the TJV showed us that we needed to beef up the cassettes so that they are capable of impact with weed. Even though it does not seem like it, the drag is ridiculous when you hit weed, especially at 15kts. Since the B2B we have done a reasonable amount of testing with them and the power output of hydrogenerators is pretty staggering.

How much power do the hydros deliver?

On Gamesa, we can get 42 amps at 16 kts. This creates a lot of power; more than double what we would be drawing on a typical day. In the South we use the most power with the heating and computers on a lot of the time.

By producing twice as much power as we need, we can positively charge the batteries. We generally run the batteries down to 15 or 20 per cent and then charge them up to 90 per cent. In the Vendée Globe we plan to have the hydrogenerators running for around six hours a day and that basically runs the boat for you.

Could you, or would you go with just hydros and solar panels on this race?

For the whole of the Vendée Globe it is a punchy call. You know the risks, weed, debris, whales, ice, all more than capable of destroying everything including the hydros.

Our view is we don’t think you can survive solely on hydros for the entire Vendée Globe. They are susceptible to damage because they are hanging underneath the boat and can be damaged by weed, debris etc. If our hydros make it half way around the world they have done enough and Mike can generate power to finish the race with the fuel he has and the solar panels.

Our priority is never to sacrifice safety and in The South we always have the radar on to detect ice. If you need to start cutting power then the radar is something that is a big draw. After that you are talking about turning your satcomms off. Then dampening down the pilot response, which in The South you just don’t want to do.

How much diesel are most boats carrying?

Yannick Bestaven was in Les Sables d’Olonne and he said that most of the boats carrying his systems were carrying between 50 and 100 litres of fuel. We have got more, only because we suffered with losing one [hydrogenerator] and damaging one in the TJV and B2B.

And the Solar panels were a bit of an afterthought, a belt and braces option but they have been good too?

We put on the solar panels because they are light and they are doing much better than we ever expected.

Mike Golding training onboard his IMOCA Open 60 Gamesa -  Lloyd Images_©  
On a good day they are producing 15-16 amps which means in The Tropics when you need about 10-12 amps to run the pilot, the computer, the B&G electronics etc, they can run the boat. That is a massive benefit because you save the drag from the hydros.

The solar panels of old were reliant on direct sunlight, but these just need light. If you stand over them they still produce power from the ambient light. With the old systems even the shadow of a control line over the cells meant they would not work, which is why we stopped using them. So for the Vendée Globe, the panels are proving their worth nicely. Once Mike has passed Cape Horn, he will probably be getting eight hours per day of ‘free’ power.

And how do the hydros actually work?

In effect it is a drive leg which is deployed on a pivot. It has a small propeller on the end, about 130mm in diameter. The system weighs about 20kgs and then there is the pipework and the cables and the converter box which regulates and transfers the power from the unit into the battery pack. There is a hydraulic unit which changes the pitch of the propellers. The reason for this is that at lower speeds it creates more resistance; by changing the blade pitch, it produces more power. Correspondingly at high speeds it feathers the blades aft and reduces the resistance, but it gives a higher top speed.

What are the downsides?

The downsides are drag. It is hard to measure the actual figures because there are so many variables in terms of sea state, wind changes and so on. But in the tank and according to the modelling which has been done it is approximately 4% of drag. So if you are doing 10kts it will be slowing you 0.4 of a knot. It is not really significant until you are in lower boat speeds. That is the theoretical model but on the back of an Open 60 there will be less drag because the water is already aerated by the influence of the keelbox, the daggerboard cassettes and the turbulence from inboard of the rudders so the drag will be less than that. They are as close to the rudders as possible so the rudders in part shield them.

They are vulnerable, though, as has been seen by Alex [Thomson on Hugo Boss], which could leave you open to not finishing a race, depending on how much fuel you carry. We have saved quarter of a tonne minimum on what we had on the last Vendée Globe and we could have gone lighter. While we have saved 250 litres, we suspect we are still carrying more fuel than the boats around and ahead of us.

Merf Owen [designer Gamesa] did a model based on carrying 100 kilos of fuel which equated to less than half an hour’s time difference between Les Sables d’Olonne and Cape Horn. So we decided to take the extra and if we are in good shape in The South then we can use it for heat, which is a big benefit.

Mike Golding website
Vendee Globe website


by Gamesa Sailing Team

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=104649

5:22 PM Wed 12 Dec 2012GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
2012 Vendee Globe

Related News Stories:

13 Dec 2012  Vendee Globe - Challenging night in the Indian Ocean onboard Gamesa
12 Dec 2012  Vendee Globe - Small gains as leaders head for Australia West gate
12 Dec 2012  Vendee Globe - Indian Ocean, Amsterdam gate, and beyond + Video
11 Dec 2012  Vendee Globe - Macif leads through gate, Hugo Boss hits object
11 Dec 2012  Vendee Globe - One record smashed, another under threat + Video
10 Dec 2012  Vendee Globe - Leaders consistently returning top speeds
10 Dec 2012  Vendee Globe - Thomson rises in drag race to Amsterdam gate
10 Dec 2012  Vendee Globe - Steady gains as leaders head for Amsterdam gate
09 Dec 2012  Vendee Globe - Banque Populaire skipper cashes in on the lead + Video
09 Dec 2012  Vendee Globe - Slashing the deficit and climbing the leaderboard
MORE STORIES ...






News - USA and the World

Spectacular performance by Bakewell-White maxi early in first race *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
The revamped Bakewell-White supermaxi, Rio 100 (Manouch Moshayedi) turned in an impressive performance in the opening stages of the Yates Cup. Sailing against a variety of benchmarks which included a a Volvo 70, a Botin 80 and an ORMA 60, Rio 100 came from behind to enjoy an impressive lead over the monohulls after 90 minutes of sailing. ... [more]  

America's Cup: Team New Zealand responds to Venue rumours *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
Emirates Team New Zealand has responded to reports published in Bermuda and mainland USA, that Bermuda has been selected as venue for the 35th America's Cup. In a media release sent mid-afternoon, New Zealand time, Emirates Team NZ CEO Grant Dalton said in response to unconfirmed reports that Bermuda had won the right to host the 35th America’s Cup, that the team had not been told of a decision ... [more]  

Amidst a 10% growth report on having issued over 9000 certificates worldwide in 2014, the recent Annual General Meeting of the Offshore Racing Congress is pleased to announces numerous improvements approved for use in the ORC Rules and policies for 2015. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, Leg 2. Team Alvimedica’s OBR Amory Ross reports on the Leg 2 start and progress. Well, now we know what it feels like to be shot from of a cannon! That was utter insanity. When the gun went I think there was almost no wind at all—two knots or something—but as we slowly crept out from under the shadow of Table Mountain it changed drastically. ... [more]  

The start of Leg 2 offered all the wind conditions you could want. I will not lie: I was pretty nervous to begin leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race (Mom called it ‘Stage Fright’); I think the whole team was pretty nervous. Here we are, having confidently completed the first leg of the Volvo Ocean Race—after 27 days at sea! ... [more]  

The ISAF Sailing World Cup Final in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates is set to be 'an experience of a lifetime' according to American Women's 470 sailor Briana Provancha. Some of the world’s top Men’s and Women’s 470 teams will make up the individual fleets with some excellent racing on the cards. ... [more]  

After finishing third in the annual RC44 match race championships, Team Nika seem to have got a taste for the podium. It was a tough day on the water for the start of fleet racing at the RC44 Oman Cup, with many teams struggling for consistency. ... [more]  

St Barth Cata Cup 2014 - Game on! by Dominique Ladouceur
The boats are ready and the sailors have all had a chance to test their catamarans in a very rigorous St-John Bay. The conditions will be windy at the start of this seventh edition of the St-Barth Cata Cup. Sailors will be facing winds from the west at 18 knots with gusts at 22 knots on the first race day. ... [more]  

While more modifications are being mooted for the champion supermaxi yacht Wild Oats XI as part of her preparation for next month’s Rolex Sydney Hobart yacht race, a high-profile new member of the team was revealed on Sydney Harbour today. ... [more]  

Wild Oats XI and Audi are ready to give the 2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart a shot! Photos by Andrea Francolini. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Meek's tips pay dividend in Leg 2 squalls and calms *Feature by Bob Fisher, Cape Town, South Africa
The seven competing boats in the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-2015 roughly gathered at 6pm local time (1600 Zulu) in a south-easterly wind that peaked at 30-40 knots, which had the local habit of dying away to nothing in places along the shoreline in the lee of Table Mountain. The clever skippers has sought advice from Geoff Meek, a local with a mass of experience ... [more]  

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing (ADOR), the Emirate’s entry into the Volvo Ocean Race 2014–15, cast off on the next leg of the epic, round-the-world race on Wednesday evening hoping to complete a hat-trick of victories in the best place possible – the team’s home port of Abu Dhabi. ... [more]  

Over 600 scientists gathered in Barcelona for the second International Ocean Research Conference have this evening named the skippers in the Barcelona World Race, the first and only double-handed, round the world regatta with no stops, as scientific agents during their upcoming circumnavigation of the globe, departing from the Catalan capital on December 31st. ... [more]  

Team Alvimedica set out on the 6,125 nautical mile race to Abu Dhabi today, as they sailed out of Cape Town at the start of Leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race. After a brief lap of Table Bay, with the Turkish/American boat close to the lead, it was straight into battle. ... [more]  

Skippers of the seven boats in the Volvo Ocean Race fleet, which set out for the 6,125 nautical mile (nm) Leg 2 from Cape From the very start on Wednesday (1800 local/1600 UTC), the sailors were given a taste of things to come with gusts of up to 35 knots kicking up a procession of white-capped waves. It was a question of 'don't break your boat' as most opted for conservative sail choices, whil ... [more]  

An invigorated, rested and relatively relaxed crew on Team SCA led the Volvo Ocean Race fleet from Cape Town late this afternoon at the start Leg Two of the Volvo Ocean Race to Abu Dhabi. The 6,125-mile leg will provide a large variety of conditions and will require good seamanship and good navigational choices. ... [more]  

A whole host of Olympic heroes and World Champions will fight it out in the Nacra 17 at the inaugural ISAF Sailing World Cup Final in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates from 26-30 November 2014. The 17-boat Nacra 17 fleet features an abundance of Olympians with no less than 18 appearances stemming from Atlanta 1996 within the 17-boat fleet of 34 sailors. ... [more]  

The ISAF Sailing World Cup Final Finn fleet is made up of some exceptional talent with Great Britain's Ed Wright and Pieter Jan Postma (NED) coming in to Abu Dhabi, UAE with good form. Wright has been a permanent fixture on World Championship and ISAF Sailing World Cup podiums in recent years. ... [more]  

The RC44 Oman Cup opened with the season’s final day of match racing. Defending champions Team Aqua held a slim one-point lead over Synergy Russian Sailing Team who were fighting for the trophy they last won in 2012. Vladimir Prosikhin’s Team Nika started the day in third, with Hugues Lepic just two-points adrift in fourth and keen to get the French flag onto the podium. ... [more]  

Leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race is underway. Catch ther replay here, if you missed the 90 minutes of racing action in Cape Town. The sailing is spectacular! ... [more]  

Visiting Cape Town was more than just a stopover in the Volvo Ocean Race for Team Alvimedica, but was an opportunity to really get to know the people and the culture of the 'mother city.' Take a look at how the team get involved while in Cape Town from meeting Archbishop Desmond Tutu to visiting heart surgery patients at the Red Cross War Memorial Children's Hospital. ... [more]  

15th Ambassadors Cup - Brazil claims victory by May Ling Teo, Changi Sailing Club
Light winds didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of the 20 ambassadors who competed in the 15th annual Changi Sailing Club’s Ambassadors’ Cup, nor did the gentle breezes take the edge off the competitive spirit of the skippers and the crew who competed for the prestigious prize. ... [more]  

Spanish solo skipper Alex Pella wrote himself into the history books of the Route du Rhum solo Transatlantic race and Spanish ocean racing when he crossed the finish line of the 3,542 miles La Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe race first in Classe40 at 06:47:08 hrs TU/07:47:08hrs CET/02:47:08 Local Guadeloupe. ... [more]  

Star Sailors League Finals 2014, Nassau (Bahamas) - Robert Stanjek will be attempting to bring a stunning 2014 season to a fittingly impressive conclusion in the big upcoming Finals in Nassau in two weeks’ time. The second half of the year has proved particularly rewarding for the German sailor. ... [more]  

Two English born Finn sailors, once coach and student, will draw swords at the ISAF Sailing World Cup in December on Port Phillip. Both are gunning for national team selection and a chance to represent their country at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, Ed Wright sailing for Great Britain and Oli Tweddell representing Australia, where he’s lived for the past decade. ... [more]  

Yachting Australia has announced the appointment of experienced and respected sports administrator Matt Carroll to the role of Chief Executive Officer. Matt commences with Yachting Australia on Monday 24 November 2014, replacing Phil Jones who is leaving the organisation after 17 years at the helm. He comes from a background of roles in Australian and Japanese Rugby and Rugby World Cup. ... [more]  

The Alpari World Match Racing Tour (AWMRT) has announced the addition of the Congressional Cup to the 2015 World Championship Tour schedule. The announcement follows this year’s 50th anniversary of the historic Congressional Cup event, organised by Long Beach Yacht Club, in Long Beach, California. ... [more]  

18ft Skiffs: Smeg's second Red-Line run down Sydney harbour in 40kts *Feature by Michael Chittenden, Sydney harbour
In a sport which generally lacks characters, the 18ft skiffs have an over-supply. David Witt is one of those, underlined by taking his boat and crew out last Sunday daring the rest of the Sydney fleet to race in a breeze of 30-40kts, on an otherwise ideal day on Sydney Harbour. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race sailors set out again for the open seas on Wednesday with no piracy activity on their radar, but the threat of cyclones ahead on Leg 2 from Cape Town to Abu Dhabi. Sailing conditions in Cape Town look challenging for the 1800 start (local time)/1600 UTC, with plenty of wind, but flat seas forecast. ... [more]  

On the opening day of the Airwaves Noumea PWA Dream Cup, which is the final event on the 2014 PWA World Tour, the competitors registered for the upcoming six days of contest, which will see fifty-seven men and twelve women battling it out over Noumea’s pristine waters. ... [more]  

There are 11 days to go until a highly competitive fleet competes in the inaugural RORC Transatlantic Race from Lanzarote to Grenada. The race across the Atlantic will be a very different experience for the crews from 12 different nations taking part. ... [more]  

The Volvo Ocean Race restarts from Cape Town on Wednesday local time. Here is the full replay of the Media Conference with all seven skippers on stage, talking of the prospect of a tropical cyclone, the nuances of this Leg - which won't see the boats hopping on a ship to avoid pirates, and the other challenges facing the crews and their teams. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race - Team Vestas Wind ready to race by Brian Carlin, Team Vestas Wind
It’s the day before departure for Leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race and we are much better prepared than the Leg 1 start in Alicante. We all have our small list of jobs to complete today but all being well; we will be out of the team base mid afternoon to take some personal time. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Young sailors get behind ADOR ahead of Leg 2
18fters: Getting through the 'Death Zone' in a 35kt breeze *Feature
Volvo Ocean Race: Sam Davies speaks openly about the first leg *Feature
ISAF Sailing World Cup Final: Exciting 49er and 49erFX action expected
America's Cup: Significant changes made to Protocol, but issues remain *Feature
2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - the 70th
Stoke Beer 18ft Skiff Auckland Champs: Knight Frank lead after 5 races
ISAF Sailing World Cup Final - RS:X elite Abu Dhabi bound
120 boat start line for Tasar Worlds in Busselton
Melges 24 U.S. Nationals - Full Throttle team grabs their sixth title
RC44 Oman Cup - Grand final showdown on the horizon
Visit Doyle Sails New Zealand at METS 2014
Top Kiwi Finn sailor debuts in the 2014 Star Sailors League Finals
2014 Butler Cup - Shane Young wins match race regatta
Adventures of a Sailor Girl: News and interviews from Nov 16 show *Feature
2014 Melges 24 U.S. National Championship - Moon wind
Australian 18ft Skiffs: 40kt winds cancel race but Witt sails + Video
2014 Melges 24 US National Championship - Day 2 images by Joy Dunigan
Volvo Ocean Race: Abu Dhabi are the Kings of Cape Town
Volvo Ocean Race: In Port races do count *Feature
Volvo Ocean Race: Abu Dhabi rules in Cape Town In Port Race   
Volvo Ocean Race - Tricky In-Port Race for Team Alvimedica   
Volvo Ocean Race - Team SCA third in Cape Town In-Port Race   
A Sailor's Dream Home in the beautiful Bay of Islands - Auction 22 Nov   
Volvo Ocean Race: Cape Town In Port Race video and Media Conference *Feature   
2014 Brazilian Championship - Day 2   
2014 U.S. Melges 24 National Championship - Long haul   
2014 - 15 Volvo Ocean Race - The thinking trio   
US Sailing Team to celebrate Clearwater Training Center   
Moth Worlds 2015: Sliced bread, sheep stations, awe and reverence *Feature   
Volvo Ocean race: Images from the Practice racing in Cape Town *Feature   
Volvo Ocean Race - Lindsay Dibowitz sails on board Team Alvimedica   
Volvo Ocean Race: Big breeze for Practice Racing in Cape Town *Feature   
Volvo Ocean Race - All-clear from piracy threat   
Volvo Ocean Race - Team SCA confirms Leg 2 crew   
ISAF Sailing World Cup Final - Laser and Laser Radial sailors all set   
Star Sailors League Finals - France to be represented   
67th Turkey Day Regatta - ABYC dishes up another special regatta   
Dual Olympian Krystal Weir announces retirement from Olympic Sailing   
Volvo Ocean Race: Sibling rivalry, Greenhalghs prepare to race   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT