Overnight the winds were clearly unsettled… most of the time there was nothing and sometimes there is 35-40 knots and heavy showers.
Of course with such wind conditions - 40 knots with heavy shower - it is easy to crack the main sail, to break battens, to damage the traveller or worse to dismast. So, most of the sailors will just let the wind blow in the shroud and try to sail between the squalls. The only problem is that out of the heavy shower's zones there is no wind at all, as LE BLEVEC is unfortunately experiencing at the moment. Yesterday evening there were 20 sailors in a distance of 150 miles and 11 in a distance of 100 miles. It is hard to tell who will be the first to escape from this pack… LE BLEVEC is still leading the fleet but the race is changing so fast at the moment.
In The Middle…
The maps yesterday afternoon, showed the fleet's head was right in the middle of Atlantic. Eight hundred miles from African coasts on their left and 800 miles from the Nordeste Brazilian beaches on their right. The next archipelago on their way will be Sao Pedro and Sao Paulo. Unknown archipelago constituted by five main islands as Belmonte, Challenger, Cabral, Nordeste and numerous submarines rocs. Other interesting detail about Sao Pedro and Sao Paulo: the archipelago highest point culminates at 18 meters … So better not count on tired eyes to locate it but instead rely on the GPS.
The two series leaders continue their battle. Hervé PIVETEAU leads now with a little more than 4 miles advance on Stéphane LE DIRAISON. The debate is interesting behind these two sailors; Henrik MASEKOWITZ (Beija Mar) is the sailor the most east followed by Matthieu SANNIÉ (Orange Mini). On the west side we find Gérard MARIN JULIA (L'Escala - Cn Llanca) and David KRIZEK (Atlantik FT). That should be interesting to observe if MASEKOWITZ and SANNIÉ's option will be rewarded. SANNIÉ might rub out his 70 miles delay if he succeeds to accumulate enough speed during the next few days.
Event Website - www.transat650.org