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11 March 2005, 10:45 am
Hanging A Right In Two Days Time
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Orange II

On 7 March, Bruno PEYRON (FRA) warned: "we're going to stall for at least 4 days". Unfortunately he was right. Since that date the maxi catamaran has had its wings clipped.
Light winds from an unfavourable direction are braking its progress, the last two 24 hour stretches producing just 100 mile days of distance made good. The performance on these days remains nonetheless high in these high pressure conditions, as they negotiate a nasty little chop running towards them, since the boat is actual making a daily average along the ground of 270 miles.

After having been up to over ten days ahead of the outright record, their lead has now shrunk back to eight, but the whole crew would have given their right arm for such a scenario 46 days ago when their race started.

With part of the anticyclone still to round today and tomorrow, followed by the hunt for the trajectory of a depression to the north of it to make good speed to the finish, PEYRON retains the same ETA. The 14-b crew should cross the finish line between midday Tuesday 15 March and the evening of Wednesday 16 March, prior to making for Brest, Orange II's first stopover port.

PEYRON, at 0400 GMT this morning was sure of his plan: 'We know exactly what's happening. We know that we're in the right place, there is no impatience aboard. We're all still trying to make the most of it as there's not going to be any more of this for a very long time after all. We're not even at the latitude of the Canaries so the temperature is ideal. The wind is coming from the east and will continue to clock round towards the south.'

'We're beginning to get to the left of the anticyclone and we're following the lift. You have to go easy so as not to hit its centre. Our VMG will remain poor for another day and a half. Another anticyclone is forming above us at the moment. This is totally normal, the system is moving back into place after the big depression disrupted everything and pushed it all deep into the south. Above that, there is air from a depression, with even a b southwesterly air flow forecast.'

'As a result we remain with the same ETA. We are sailing with the code 0 this morning which replaced the solent. As soon as there is a little more pressure, we'll be able to hoist the large gennaker and gybe onto a really northerly course. In a little less than two days, we'll really be able to branch off towards the finish'.

References:

Day at sea: 46th
Date: 11 March 2005
Time (GMT): 0418
Latitude: 23 50.52' N
Longitude: 43 07.68' W
Instantaneous speed: 10.2 knots
Instantaneous heading: 4 degrees
Average speed: 10.2 knots
Speed over 24 hours: 11.5 knots
Distance over 24 hours: 276 nm
Speed since the start: 22.2 knots
Outright distance: 24,347 nm
Distance remaining: 2,321.90 nm

Event Media (As Amended By ISAF). Image: ©Gilles Martin-Raget
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