Please select your home edition
Edition
SOUTHERN-SPARS-MISSY-FURLING-BOOMS-728-X-90

Bermudes 1000 Race - Finale draws near

by Bermudes 1000 Race 17 May 00:11 PDT
Bermudes 1000 Race - Sébastien Simon sur Arkéa-Paprec © Yann Riou

After hurtling along at warp speed for 24 hours, propelled by a steady NW'ly wind, the leading boats in the Bermudes 1000 Race Douarnenez Brest have, as expected, seen their progress falter as of early this afternoon. The reasoning behind this is that the leaders of the fleet are currently negotiating a transition phase. This is taking the form of a sluggish header, which is forcing the skippers to reposition themselves along the route, but with it come some uncertainties.

As a result, it's hard to know exactly how long each of them will be slowed for. For now, the latest estimates suggest that the first skipper, Sébastien Simon, will likely cross the finish line in Brest between 5:00 and 8:00 hours French time tomorrow morning. He should have a four to five-hour lead over the trio made up of Boris Herrmann (Malizia), Yannick Bestaven (Maître Coq) and Sam Davies (Initiatives Cur) whose order of arrival is drumming up great suspense!

"Since the Azores, it's been like a conveyor belt. The weather has been fabulous and the sea is pretty well ordered. Right now, I'm sailing at 90 degrees to the wind, on a reach with 25 knots of breeze. It's fantastic!" commented Clément Giraud (Envol by Fortil). Positioned in 7th place some 175 miles shy of the leader, the skipper from Toulon in southern France is still making the most of the fine conditions to make headway up to Brest this Thursday afternoon. Meantime, the leaders have begun to stumble in a light patch. Heading the fleet, Sébastien Simon was the first to fall into its clutches at around 13:30 hours, his speed plummeting from 20 to 5 knots, and the wind heading him. Right now, the sailor from Les Sables d'Olonne is close-hauled waiting to latch onto a N'ly wind, which he should be the first to hook up with again and then make for the finish line, which lies between the semaphore of Saint-Mathieu and that of Toulinguet located at the entrance to the Brest narrows. "For now, it's hard to gauge how long this transition will last and at what point the new breeze will make its presence felt once more. We'll see the leaders bunch up again and then get further apart since all the lead boats are likely to be affected by this tricky zone", announces Jacques Caraës, Race Director of this Bermudes 1000 Race, the latter having some reservations about the ETAs announced, which might naturally slide a little. The one related to Sébastien Simon could reasonably be situated between 5:00 and 8:00 hours tomorrow, and those of his closest pursuers may fluctuate between 9:00 and 11:00 hours. One thing for sure, though, is that the final match between Boris Herrmann (Malizia), Yannick Bestaven (Maître Coq) and Sam Davies (Initiatives Cur) promises to be formidable. Indeed, this trio is grouped within less than three miles of one another, which is nothing, especially given the weather context. Up for grabs are the second and third spots on the podium no less!

Place your bets!

The battle for the certificates of merit is also likely to be thrilling right to the last, especially so for 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th places, which should be split between Clément Giraud (Envol by Fortil), Stéphane Le Diraison (Time for Oceans), Arnaud Boissières (La Mie Câline Artipôle) and Fabrice Amedeo, who are bunched tightly together in terms of distance to the goal, albeit on very different trajectories. The skipper of Newrest Art & Fenêtres, who is about forty miles further North than his three rivals, is today benefiting from a bit more pressure, as well as a better angle of progression, so he might well shake up the current hierarchy. "Since scaling my mast yesterday, I've been able to extract myself from the windless zone now that I have use of my large headsails again (gennaker and code zero). I'm currently on a reach, a point of sail the boat absolutely loves. I reckon I'm still in with a chance of things working out with the group ahead", commented the skipper journalist, who has been running some optimistic routing.

Still becalmed for the latecomers

Further towards the tail end of the fleet, Manuel Cousin (Groupe Setin), Damien Seguin (Groupe APICIL), Miranda Merron (Campagne de France) and Alexia Barrier (4myPlanet), have also really got a shift on since this morning. This has come as a great relief, as the British sailor explained in a message sent this morning: "Yesterday was spent trapped in the forecast windless bubble. I think I've escaped now, at least I hope so. Hours of going nowhere fast with the sails slatting violently in the swell. The little breeze there was kept shifting every time I turned my back to do something else."

Trailing the peloton, Pip Hare (Superbigou), Ari Huusela (Ariel II) and Belgian sailor Denis Van Weynbergh (Eyesea), who rounded the Azores waypoint this morning at around 3:00 hours and is now making for Brest too, are still having a rough time of it. In fact, all three are having to contend with a very light wind, which fortunately is set to fill in over the course of the evening as it shifts round to the NW. This should enable them to lengthen their stride too and complete the 2,000-mile course of this Bermudes 1000 Race Douarnenez Brest on Monday.

To note

The cartography will be activated every two minutes within a 25-mile radius of the finish line.

Latest ETAs

Sébastien Simon (Arkéa Paprec) on 17 May at 4:45 hours
Boris Herrmann (Malizia II Yacht Club de Monaco) on 17 May at 9:00 hours
Yannick Bestaven (Maître Coq IV) on 17 May at 9:50 hours
Sam Davies (Initiatives Cur) on 17 May at 9:50 hours
Giancarlo Pedote (Prysmian) on 17 May at 11:45 hours
Maxime Sorel (V and B Sailing Together) on 17 May at 12:30 hours
Fabrice Amedeo (Newrest Art et Fenêtres) on 17 May at 18:15 hours
Clément Giraud (Envol by Fortil) on 17 May at 19:45 hours
Stéphane Le Diraison (Time for Oceans) on 17 May at 19:45 hours
Arnaud Boissières (La Mie Câline Artipôle) on 17 May at 19:45 hours
Manuel Cousin (Groupe Setin) on 18 May at 00:30 hours
Damien Seguin (Groupe APICIL) on 18 May at 2:00 hours
Miranda Merron on 18 May at 12:15 hours
Pip Hare (Superbigou) on 19 May at 3:30 hours
Ari Huusela (Ariel II) on 19 May at 4:00 hours
Alexia Barrier (4myplanet) on 19 May at 5:00 hours
Denis Van Weynbergh (Eyesea) on 19 May at 20:00 hours

Position report at 17:00 hours:

1. Sébastien Simon (Arkéa Paprec) 166.4 miles from the finish
2. Yannick Bestaven (Maître Coq IV) 12 miles behind the leader
3. Sam Davies (Initiatives Cur) 12.6 m
4. Boris Herrmann (Malizia II Yacht Club de Monaco) 14.1 m
5. Giancarlo Pedote (Prysmian) 25.8 m
6. Maxime Sorel (V and B Sailing Together) 41.4 m
7. Clément Giraud (Envol by Fortil) 152.6 m
8. Stéphane Le Diraison (Time for Oceans) 166.8 m
9. Arnaud Boissières (La Mie Câline Artipôle) 169.5 m
10. Fabrice Amedeo (Newrest Art et Fenêtres) 175.2 m
11. Manuel Cousin (Groupe Setin) 301.5 m
12. Damien Seguin (Groupe APICIL) 316.6 m
13. Miranda Merron (Campagne de France) 438.9 m
14. Alexia Barrier (4myplanet) 500.4 m
15. Pip Hare (Superbigou) 583.6 m
16. Ari Huusela (Ariel II) 606.6 m
17. Denis Van Weynbergh (Eyesea) 645.4 m.

Related Articles

Ysbrand joins Pip Hare for Transat Jacques Vabre
An important qualifying stage for Pip's bid to compete in the 2020-2021 Vendée Globe With thousands of miles on his CV, Ysbrand has sailed a huge range of yachts from Mini 6.50s to Volvo 70s, and is no stranger to single- and double-handed racing. Posted on 12 Oct
Bekking sets sights on 9th campaign with Childhood
A veteran team has come together to launch a Swedish campaign in the VO65 class Bouwe Bekking, an eight-time veteran of The Ocean Race, has announced a new project with an eye on competing in the 2021-22 edition of the Race. Posted on 12 Oct
The Ocean Race: Still turning the tide
Dee Caffari talks about her plans for the next edition of the Race Former The Ocean Race skipper Dee Caffari talks about ocean health and her plans for the next edition of the Race. Posted on 10 Oct
North Sails Weekly Debrief
Azzura wins Super Series, IMOCA & HELIX, Glenn Cook joins North, A conversation with Ken Read We predicted the 2019 52 Super Series would be the most competitive season to date, and in the end, Azzura was on top. Posted on 6 Oct
More competitors at the start of the Vendée Globe
The number of candidates - 34 so far - already represents a first record for this 2020/2021 edition Ever since its creation, the Vendée Globe - a sailing race round-the-world, solo, non-stop and without assistance - has been an essential reference in the world of offshore sailing. Posted on 3 Oct
60 IMOCA sailors ready for Transat Jacques Vabre
The line-up brings together people from various backgrounds and with various ambitions Thirty IMOCAs will line up for the start of the Transat Jacques Vabre - a record. That means sixty sailors (including seven women and sixteen non-French sailors) will be doing battle over the 4350 miles separating Le Havre from Salvador da Bahia. Posted on 2 Oct
Charal shines in 2019 Azimut Challenge in Lorient
With just over a month to go to Transat Jacques Vabre, the event was a test for many of the boats There was a lot to see at every level and the weather conditions were ideal. Out of the twenty boats ranked at the finish, there were 12 foilers and eight non-foilers, three of which made it to the top ten. Posted on 25 Sep
11th Hour Racing Team in the Azimut Challenge
Podium finish in team's first official race This past week marked the first official race for 11th Hour Racing Team in the Defi Azimut (Azimut Challenge) out of Lorient, France a city 40 miles south of where the team has been training for the Transat Jacques Vabre Posted on 25 Sep
New Zhik partnership with Alex Thomson Racing
As the Official Technical Clothing Supplier for the team's 2020 Vendee Globe campaign The innovative marine apparel brand, Zhik, announce a new partnership as the Official Technical Clothing Supplier to Alex Thomson Racing, as part of the team's 2020 Vendee Globe campaign. Posted on 24 Sep
Italian city to host finish of The Ocean Race
The selection of Italy's top maritime city opens the event to a new audience Genoa will be the finish of the next edition of The Ocean Race, marking the first time the fully-crewed, around the world yacht race, known as the 'toughest test of a team in sport' will come to Italy. Posted on 23 Sep
Festival of Sails 2020 - FOOTERZhik ATR Aroshell SW FOOTERGul 2019 CODEZERO EVO Footer