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24 January 2003, 12:58 pm
Geronimo Slows
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Jules Verne Trophy
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Caught in another Anticyclone, Geronimo has slowed over the past 12 hours, yet still remains ahead of the record schedule set by Orange.
After having to route a long way west, the trimaran covered 495 nautical miles at over 20 knots yesterday and started on a long curving course to the south-east in an attempt to pick up the stable trade winds on the edge of the anticyclone over St. Helena without falling into the calms that lie around the centre of that weather system.

Today, on her 12th day at sea, the Cap Gemini and Schneider Electric trimaran was caught by another anticyclone, which slowed her down. Her average speed for the last 12 hours has been just 14.63 knots.

Meanwhile, Ellen MacArthur following a weather briefing with KINGFISHER2's weather router, Meeno Schrader this morning has confirmed that the probability of KINGFISHER2 departing early next week has lessened from 70% yesterday to 50% today. It is now in the balance whether the window of opportunity will remain although the crew are expected still to return to Lorient. "We haven't given up on this weather window - far from it," said MacArthur. "But looking at the weather models this morning we can see the High Pressure is moving further north and this is not so good for us."

The High Pressure zone needed to create the northerly air flow to propel KINGFISHER2 south was identified early this week but now shows signs of going further north this would result in the wind coming from a more westerly direction and looking further ahead may bring very light winds west of Gibraltar.

Standby mode is still AMBER and MacArthur and her crew are still hoping the weather window will hold but the decision to go will be delayed for another 24-36 hours. News Editor
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