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FILA finish, Pindar Systems to round Ascension

Open 50 Duel to the Death between One Dream & Saving

mercredi 21 novembre 2001Information Transat Jacques Vabre

At last, out of this night will come the first two Open 50’s, both of whom are due to finish from 0200hrs GMT in Bahia. Leading by 40 miles in the ‘yellow boat’ One Dream One Mission is Brit/Aussie pair Alex Bennett & Paul Larsen. They are feeling more than just the Brazilian heat on their backs, but also the heat from the close competition with the newer Open 50 Saving, skippered by Renaud Le Youdec & Jean Bacave.

In the 10 knot Northeasterly breeze everything points to the newer 50 footer to be faster, even the boys admit it themselves. But Bennett and Larsen have been working their older boat "to 110% of her potential." They sailed 30 miles off the coast to keep in the wind last night but know that "at midnight we’ll sail into a wind hole, and so hopefully will Saving, but we’ll start slowing down first." Their rivals lack a weather router and have experienced technical problems, such as a pulley on the gennaker halyard breaking and the halyard jamming. So advantage One Dream One Mission for the moment, but as Alex ended "We still don’t know quite when the wind will come back so it’s hard to predict our arrival, it’s all on until the fat lady sings !"

After the arrival this morning of Swiss/French boat Bobst Group-Armor Lux (Stamm/Riou) at 0445hrs 13s GMT in 8th place, the all girl team of Miranda Merron and Fred Brulé on Un Univers deService are next in line with 38 miles to go. They have done well on their first transat on an Open 60, and one that, as Miranda puts it, ‘is an older lady’ compared to her adversaries. She and French co-skipper Frederique are closely watching Sollac Atlantique (Seeten/Drouglazet), who went inshore last night whilst the girls stayed offshore, and are only 16 miles behind.

Merron battles as much with the deficiencies of her own boat as with her rivals to leeward. "The wind is light right now, which isn’t great for us, we are slower in these conditions but I’m assured that the wind will rise this evening. We’re watching Sollac Atlantique and staying between them and the finish, but they have a big gennaker, which we don’t have. But overall we’ve just tried to stay close to the rum line to keep to the shortest course as we lack the boat speed and certain sails."

The second British helm to be pleased with his performance is Richard Tolkien on This Time. Today was Richard’s 4th mast climb, as the pin which attaches the top batten to the main track on the mast has broken and is gauging a bit of carbon out of the mast. These ‘Ancient Mariners’ have redoubled their resolve to finish the race just two days off the leader. "At the start we hoped to finish 4 days from the leader as we reckoned that the boat was 20 % off the performance of Sill. But if we can finish this race after 19 days or a bit less then we’ll only be 10% off the pace – and we must have added half a day due to tactical errors and one sail blow out. Did you know that this boat won the Transat Jacques Vabre Transat Jacques Vabre #TJV2015 in 1995 under Jean Maurel at an average speed of 8.4 knots, and our’s looks to be about 9.8 knots, so I’m pleased with the modifications I’ve made, I’ve learnt so much through this process."

Multihull Fleet

The 7th multihull Fila crossed the finish line at 1340hrs 08s GMT today. This brand new trimaran skippered by Italian Giovanni Soldini and designed by Van Peteghem-Lauriot-Prévost has completed its first transatlantic crossing, no doubt with relief, after the unfortunate dismasting during the delivery to the Zeebrugge Grand Prix.

Pindar Systems, skippered by Emma Richards & Mikaela Von Koskull, is due to round the Ascension Island this evening. The girls will be delivered from the worst of the upwind conditions in the Southern Atlantic, which caused their 3 nearest rivals to abandon, and can thankfully crack off the sheets and rally downwind to the finish, still 1500 miles off.

- Multihull Rankings (Time reference + difference from leader)

- 1-Groupama (Franck Cammas-Stève Ravusssin) 14d 09hrs 03m 25s
- 2-Foncia (Alain Gautier-Ellen MacArthur) 14d 12hrs 35m 10s + 3hrs 31m 45s
- 3-Fujifilm (Loïck Peyron-Loïc Le Mignon) 14d 22hrs 11m 35s + 13hrs 08m 10s
- 4-Bonduelle (Jean Le Cam-Jacques Caraës) 15d 09hrs 31m 40s + 1d 00hrs 28m 15s
- 5-Belgacom (Jean-Luc Nélias-Michel Desjoyeaux) 15d 15hrs 28m 05s + 1d 06hr 24m 40s
- 6-BanquePopulaire (Roucayrol/Parlier) 16d 02hrs 21m 53s +1d 17hrs 18m 28s
- 7-Fila (Soldini/Lochmazeur) 17d 1hr 40m 8s +2d 16hrs 46m 43s

- Multihull Positions at 1415hrs GMT – DTF (nm)

- Postn Boat Latitude Longitude Speed Hdg DTF DFL
- 8 Nautica 11 44.92’ S 28 25.16’ W 10.5 234 595.9
- 9 Pindar Systems 7 22.16’ S 14 10.80’ W 10.9 193 1500.2 904.3

- Open 60 Monohull Rankings (Time reference + difference from leader)

- 1-Sill Plein Fruit (Jourdain/Le Cleac’h) 16d 13hrs 23m 41s
- 2-Ecover (Golding/Hutchinson) 16d 18hrs 40m 55s + 5hrs 17mins 14s
- 3-Casto-Darty-But (Moloney/Turner) 16d 20hrs 10m 52s + 6hrs 47mins 11s
- 4-SME-Négocéane (Sanso/Dumont) 17d 01hrs 23m 40 s +11hrs 59mins 59s
- (Gallay/De Pavant) 17d 03hrs 23m 20s + 13hrs 59mins 39s
- 6-Fila (Laurent/Rufini) 17d 04hrs 12m 38s + 14hrs 48mins 57s
- 7-Temenos (Wavre/Paret) 17d 05hrs 30m 53s – 16hrs 07mins 12s
- 8-Bobst Group-Armor-Lux (Stamm/Riou) 17d 16hrs 55mins 13s + 1d 3hrs 31mins 32s

- Open 60 Monohull Positions at 1645hrs GMT – DTF (nm)

- Postn Boat Latitude Longitude Speed Hdg DTF DFL
- 9 UUDS 13 00.52’ S 38 13.40 W 8 281 20.8
- 10 Sollac Atlantique 12 54.20’ S 38 03.96’ W 9.6 233.8 31.3 10.5
- 11 This Time 12 22.60’ S 37 29.16’ W 10 220 76.3 55.4

- Open 50 Monohull Positions at 1645hrs GMT – DTF (nm)

- 1 One Dream : One Mission 11 58.96’ S 37 00.68’ W 8.9 222.7 112.7
- 2 Saving (1500hrs) 11 13.00’ S 36 16.00’ W 7 225 47.8 40.8

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