Club Med and Innovation Explorer continue to break records as if all they needed to do is point their bows. After the 24 hour record broken by Club MEd (655.2 miles on February 8th), Innovation Explore has devoured the Southern Ocean (Cape of Good Hop...
"An interesting record," indicated the navigator Roger Nilson (Innovation Explorer) "it shows that with quality sails we could have really worried Club MEd!" As for the race itself, Club MEd and Innovation Explorer are in the grips of troublesome anticyclones forcing them to attempt options that extend the direct route.
The long haul up the Atlantic is holding its promises with the formation of cells of high pressure which pop up on the routes of the giants. Club MEd is opting for an Easterly path while waiting for the wind shift to the NE then to the E that will allow her to tack to starboard. By that time, the route will be clear as far as the Equator. For the moment Club MEd is coping and managing to hold 11 knots average speed and almost 300 miles in 24 hours.
For Loick Peyron's maxi-catamaran, the situation has become a slightly bit clearer since yesterday morning. "We missed the slight bit of wind yesterday," declared Olivier Lozachmeur, "and because of that we found ourselves with nothing. It enabled us to rest, but left us with no possibility of getting out of this mess". Salvation arrived early today with a WSW flow. "The sea is flat and we're sailing at 120° to the wind", or the most efficient point of sailing for striding across oceans.
The men on board Team Adventure suffered before being able to leave Cape Farewell to starboard, the entrance to the Cook Straits. Whilst they planned to be in Wellington on Tuesday they didn't arrive until today at 00:50 local time (1150 am GMT). It is the second time in this race round the world that Cam Lewis's maxi-catamaran has had to stop to repair part of the damaged main beam fairing. They had barely docked at Lambton Quay in Wellington, before Team Adventure fell into the hands of the four American boat builders, specialists in composite materials, who were waiting for them. As soon as the boat tied up alongside the dock, a little before 1200 GMT, the countdown for the repairs began. The four men present on site will be working under floodlights throughout the night - it is 1 o'clock in the morning in Wellington - to evaluate the extent of the damage.
Their first work consists in fact of drying the damaged part of the fairing to evaluate the extent of the problem and the repairs to carry out. When still at sea, Larry Rosenfeld described the damage: "the skin of the main beam is coming off in strips over a surface of about 2 metres, this place has been constantly hit by the waves" and he added, "as long as the structure remains sound, we have no other choice but to stop for repairs". Team Adventure is now stopped for a minimum of 60 hours.
Warta-Polpharma have also planned to stop for a few hours in Wellington to repair their Standard B. "We should be in Wellington within 24 hours, but our stopover will only last one or two hours" thought the watch captain Jaroslaw Kaczorowski. This repair to the transmission equipment, like that carried out in Gibraltar, will not cause any penalty because it is the responsibility of the organisation.
Ranking (15/02/01 15:00:00 GMT)
Boat Speed DTF DTL
1 Club MEd 10.0 5279.3 0
2 Innovation Explorer 24.4 6206.6 927.4
3 TeamAdventure 0.0 11317.2 6037.9
4 Warta Polpharma 14.2 11720.8 6441.5
5 Team Legato 18.3 12371.0 7091.7