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16 February 2005, 02:12 pm
Halfway Point Today!
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Orange II

Orange II has had to ease off on the throttle a little over the past 24 hours, because of rough seas with 6-7 metre troughs, which are forcing the maxi-catamaran to restrain herself, postponing any attack to ensure her own safety.
They have already had two warnings with a running backstay winch and a boom block that exploded. Fortunately, these two incidents were not too serious, but only go to confirm that Bruno Peyron's decision to stay on the defensive was the wise one. Nevertheless, even in this very tough sea state, caused by the presence of a front 300 miles ahead with 50-knot winds, Orange II is still managing to maintain a daily average speed of almost 23 knots. Priority is being given at the moment to finding the best route to avoid punishing the boat, while at the same time improving day by day on the lead over the two major records they are aiming at. The goal is being reached, as two figures once again clearly show this morning: Orange II is now more than 2000 miles ahead of these two records and will be passing the halfway point today after around 23 or 24 days sailing. An impressive performance indeed!

Bruno PEYRON: 'Things are a little tricky, as we've had some nasty seas since yesterday. We're more in a defensive mode than an attacking one. The sea is going to have to calm down a little, before we can speed off again. We have had two inconsequential warnings, with a boom block that exploded and a broken running backstay winch. Two warnings we need to listen to. But it's been a week now since Crozet that we have been on the defensive. We shall be in this mode for another 24 hours until tomorrow evening, before speeding away again.'

2000 miles ahead. 'It's true that it is quite impressive to know that we are almost at the halfway point, even if we're not too happy about the past 24 hours. It was difficult to let the boat suffer, not having the right angle and being forced to slow down, but we mustn't grumble either when you see 11 days to reach Cape Town, 21 days for the south of Australia and 24 or 25 days for New Zealand.'

The ice zone south of New Zealand. 'We haven't had any information over the past month concerning the ice zone, which lies ahead and which is a real discontinuous wall. We don't have any radar, no security system on board, so we're going to have to take the long way around. That will mean we have further to go, but we're going to have to put up with that cost, as the decision has been taken.'

Data:
Day at sea: 23
Date: 16/02/2005
Time (GMT): 04h00
Latitude: 52 42.32' S
Longitude: 131 44.12' E
Recorded speed: 22.3 knots
Recorded bearing: 66
Average speed: 27.5 knots
Speed over 24h: 22.2 knots
Distance over 24h: 532 nm
Speed since the start: 22.8 knots
Total distance: 12,466 nm
Remaining distance: 12,825.40 nm
Lead on day 22:
- record J.Verne record: +2,091 nm (ahead)
- absolute record: +2,057 nm (ahead)

Orange II Media (As Amended by ISAF)
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