News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery : Gitana 13 - Gybe towards the equator imminent

Gitana 13 - Gybe towards the equator imminent

'Gitana 13 - Tea Route - Tea Route Record 2008'    © Copyright : Gitana S.A.

After 26 days at sea, Gitana 13 has covered over 8,700 miles and still has 4,200 miles to cover this Tuesday morning to reach the Elizabeth II Bridge at the entrance to the River Thames and the end of its Tea Route voyage. Still making headway to the west in the tradewinds of the southern hemisphere, Lionel Lemonchois and his men will gybe towards the equator and the infamous Doldrums during the course of the day.

'We’ve had some wind again since yesterday afternoon. There is a steady tradewind kicking out 20 to 25 knots of breeze, which is enabling the helmsmen to benefit from some great sessions to slip along in. We are virtually in the middle of the Atlantic, a long way from everything…' confided Dominic Vittet, prior to drawing up Gitana 13’s ‘plan of attack’ for the next few days: 'Our northward gybe isn’t far off now. It’s an important moment in terms of strategy and that’s why we’re constantly refining our timing with Sylvain Mondon onshore and Lionel.'

Indeed, the crew of the maxi-catamaran equipped by Baron Benjamin de Rothschild, will benefit from a rather unusual situation in which to cross the equator and above all the Doldrums a little further north: 'By gybing (change of tack to a downwind point of sail) today, the objective is to climb due northwards, on starboard tack, and benefit as much as they can from the African monsoon (SW’ly winds) to cross the Doldrums to its east. This opportunity will enable them to ‘cut the corner’ and gain some precious miles along the course' enthused the onboard navigator.

Sylvain Mondon sheds some light on this rather atypical scenario, which looks to be a great opportunity for Lionel Lemonchois and his nine man crew: 'The Doldrums or the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone is caused by the opposition of the tradewinds in the northern hemisphere (NE’ly sector) and those in the southern hemisphere (SE’ly sector). This zone is synonymous with shifty winds, with conditions alternating between calms and violent squalls. In a standard situation, the Doldrums stretch further eastwards and very often as a result it is very difficult to traverse the zone near the African coast. Sometimes though a monsoon airflow, which generates SW’ly winds, can form and upset the original scenario. You can observe this phenomenon when the African continent warms up sufficiently to create a thermal low that diverts the SE’ly tradewinds from the southern hemisphere. And this is exactly what is happening at the moment off the coast of Guinea, Sierra Leone and also the Ivory Coast.'

According to the latest forecasts there is still a chance for the maxi-catamaran in the colours of the LCF Rothschild Group to return to the northern hemisphere during the course of the day on Thursday 11th September.

by Gitana 13 media


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

8:27 AM Wed 10 Sep 2008 GMT

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

Click for further information on

Related News Stories:

26 Sep 2008  Gitana 13 claims new Tea Route record time
25 Sep 2008  Gitana 13 nears end of Tea Route voyage
23 Sep 2008  Gitana 13 nearing end of Tea Route attempt
20 Sep 2008  Gitana 13 reads low and heads for Cape Finisterre
19 Sep 2008  Brain-teaser for Gitana 13 crew
15 Sep 2008  Gitana 13 sailing abeam of Sierra Leone
11 Sep 2008  Gitana 13 racking up the miles
07 Sep 2008  South Easterly tradewind assisting Gitana 13
05 Sep 2008  Gitana 13 round the Cape of Good Hope
02 Sep 2008  Gitana 13 midway through Tea Route record attempt

News - USA and the World

Audi Melges 20 World Championship - Classic Garda conditions on day 2 by International Audi Melges 20 Class Association,

Audi Melges 20 World Championship - Alessandro Rombelli's 'STIG' leads by International Audi Melges 20 Class Association,

Aldo Alessio Regatta - Three days of tight racing by Erik Simonson, Pressure-Drop.US,

Sailing Champions League - which is Europe's best sailing club? by Dan Ibsen & the Sail-World team, Copenhagen

Weta fun at the Wine & Roses Regatta
Extreme Sailing Series: The Wave, Muscat claims victory on Cardiff Bay
International 14 World Championships 2015: Not just for boys
Rio de Janeiro achieves 50% treatment of sewage outflow *Feature
2014 AWT Quatro Desert Showdown - Event memorable videos
2014 18' Skiff Int Regatta: Day 1 at San Francisco - Reversal on beach
Emirates Team NZ: Last race boost cannot save team from table bottom
PWA Alacati World Cup - Furious slalom is upon us
J/111 World Championships - The Winner is Shmokin Joe!
J/24 US National Championship - Victory for Will Welles’ Cougar
Extreme Sailing Series: View the Final Day's action - Replay
NYYC Grandmasters Team Race - Reign continues for Noroton Yacht Club
WSSR announces new World Record Around Britain and Ireland
IFDS Worlds 2014 - Final day photos by Tim Wilkes
2014 Detroit Cup - Morvan wins
Newport Bucket Regatta 2014 -Images by George Bekris
IFDS Worlds 2014 - Final report: USA qualifies for Rio 2016
Extreme Sailing Series: Absent With-Out Leave – Ben Ainslie Racing
2014 IFDS World Championship - New champions claim medals
2014 IFDS World Championships - Sunday’s race images by Tim Wilkes
Shark World Championships underway in Toronto   
Anna Tunnicliffe: Alinghi second o'all - Extreme Sailing Series, Day 3   
Formula Kite World Championships - Nocher and Bridge crowned Champions   
Emirates Team NZ: Frustrating Day 3 in Extreme Sailing Series, Cardiff   
Extreme Sailing Series: Light winds help The Wave Muscat - Day 3   
Extreme Sailing Series 2014 Act five - Absent without leave – the wind   
IFDS Worlds 2014 - Images: Race day five   
Herreshoff Classic Regatta 2014 - Images by Ingrid Abery   
Youth Olympics - Gold to Argentinean and Chinese Techno 293 racers   
Youth Olympics Games Nanjing - Double Youth Olympic Gold for Singapore   
Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race 2014 - Two Handers celebrate   
Audi Melges 20 U.S. National Championship 2014 - Brazilian dance party   
IFDS Disabled Sailing Worlds Day 5 - USA fighting for Rio 2016 Berths   
J/111 World Championship 2014 - Day 4: Shmokin Joe consolidates lead   
Anna Tunnicliffe: Alinghi on top - Extreme Sailing Series, Day 2   
2014 IFDS World Championships - Breezy frustrations   
2014 Detroit Cup - Down to the final four   
Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race - Every finisher's a winner   
2014 49er, 49er FX, Nacra 17 U.S. National Championship - Day 2   
J/24 US National Championship - Will Welles leaps into lead   

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  

Switch Default Region to:

Social Media





New Zealand

United Kingdom

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World






Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text


Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery


Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery





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.
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT