Francis JOYON has extended his advantage over the solo round the world record to more than 600 miles, although since this morning his pace has slowed.
Francis JOYON (FRA), sailing his IDEC
trimaran, is now just over six days into his attempt on Ellen MACARTHUR's (GBR) solo round the world record and has already left over 2,500nm of ocean behind him. This flying start, has put the Frenchman 658 miles ahead of MACARTHUR's record time. However today has IDEC
's progress has slowed considerably, down from over 20 to around 8 knots, after JOYON hit the doldrums around 04:00 UTC this morning.
Up until that point JOYON had been maintaining a blistering pace, doubling his advantage over MACATHUR's reference time in just 36 hours. Since this morning though, the affect of the doldrums on the giant red trimaran has been dramatic. Initially IDEC
slowed from over 20 to 15 knots and the speeds have been dropping further since then. At the 11:00 UTC poll the recorded speed was down to just 8.7 knots and for the first time in two days his 24 hour average dipped below 20 knots.
Yesterday JOYON himself warned that the doldrums could, "call into question all this beautiful advance."
However, with over a day's advantage already over MACARTHUR's time, he is still looking in a very strong position.
The Record To Beat
Record: Round the World, non-stop, singlehanded
Skipper: Ellen MACATHUR (GBR)
Dates: 28 November 2004-7 February 2005
Elapsed time: 71 days, 14 hours, 18 minutes and 33 seconds
Distance: 21,760 nm
Average Speed: 12.66 knots
Trimaran IDEC - www.trimaran-idec.com