It was a good Day 11 for the Cap Gemini and Schneider Electric trimaran. Despite winds that remained unstable, she covered 521 nautical miles on her 11th day at sea at an average speed of 21.72 knots point-to-point.
Here's what the skipper had to say this morning. "We're making about 25 knots over the surface in 20 knots of winds with intermittent squalls under full main and solent. Fortunately, Geronimo is fast in light-to-medium weather conditions. We're not losing any time now, but we certainly need to make some up!"
Since the start of the day, Geronimo had covered 334 nautical miles in 14 hours; an average speed of 24 knots.
There are nearly a thousand southerly miles still to cover before Geronimo can think about turning the corner towards the Indian Ocean, and the St. Helena High is still a long way south of its normal position and drifting slowly towards Africa. The French trimaran must therefore skirt the anticyclone to the west below the 40th parallel, which will further extend her route. Speed is therefore vital to compensate for her 50-degree variance from the ideal course. This detour is all the more unwelcome since the Antarctic convergence south of South Africa is moving north, bringing with it floating ice and growlers and making the southward passage a dangerous option.
The next waypoint is at 35°S, 24°W, a seamark determined by averaging the routes taken by previous Jules Verne Trophy competitors. Today, Geronimo is 92 sea miles further from this point than the current record holder, which puts her about 4 hours behind. She therefore remains very much in the running to set a new record, despite these less than ideal conditions.
Positions - DAY 11
19°01S - 31°32W
521 nautical miles in 24 hours, at an average speed of 21.70 knots.
21°36S - 33°30W
435 nautical miles in 24 hours, at an average speed of 18.10 knots
Full positions are available on Geronimo's website at the address below.