Video courtesy Transat Jacques Vabre.
Atlentic Ocean – The Multi 50 trimaran Arkema Aquitaine capsized yesterday evening (Sunday) around 200 miles from the port of Lisbon, Portugal. Co-skippers Lalou Roucayrol and Mayeul Riffet have made arrangements for a tow to Portugal.
In the IMOCA Open 60 monohulls Macif which made a four hours pit stop in Peniche, Portugal yesterday to replace a rudder blade is back in contact with the leaders. And GDF Suez still leads the Class 40 fleet.
Ironically, after surviving a Biscay gale, it was in more manageable but gusty, shifty trade winds conditions that Lalou Roucayrol and Mayeul Riffet on Arkema – Aquitaine capsized at around 2230hrs (French time) on Sunday with the Portuguese trade winds blowing from the N’ly sector at around 20kts. The fast, gusty conditions proved to be the undoing of the multihull in conditions which often cause problems for multihulls, flying downwind. The gennaker sheet would only need to have snagged with a bad set of waves when the evening visibility was poorer.
Yann Eliès (FenêtréA Cardinal) who was close when the trimaran capsized comfirmed to race direction what had happened and that the two skippers were uninjured and did not want immediate help. Eliès was less than a mile away when it happened. The duo, in coordination with their technical team, will set up a tow to Portugal. Weather conditions are not due to become any worse off Lisbon in the coming days.
Macif back on the attack
Required to stop in Peniche, 85kms to the north of Cascais, by Lisbon, François Gabart and Michel Desjoyeaux managed to repair their starboard rudder along with their technical team. Macif had already regained ten miles thanks to their rapid speeds. But if Maitre CoQ (Beyou-Pratt) are still leading in the IMOCA monohulls, the leaders need to keep an eye on Safran (Guillemot-Bidégorry) behind them who have managed to get more south and into better pressure with PRB (Riou-Le Cam) and Cheminées Poujoulat beind them.
The Multi 50s are in the same piece of water there is a simple problem. The centre of the high pressure which is between the Azores and Portugal is building and spreading NE and so they need to stay on its southern side whilst making southing to stay close to the direct course. Today, Armistice Day, is very important in terms of tactical investments as when they are off the Canary Islands the IMOCA and Multi 50’s will set up their direct course towards the Equator to cross around 25 degrees west.
Mare up to second
For Class40 the Bay of Biscay is relatively kind to the fleet who are chasing GDF Suez (Rogues – Delahaye) which was fifteen miles ahead of Mare (Riechers – Brasseur) with Spain’s Tales Santander (Pella-Santurde) in third now at 30 miles behind the leaders. Britain’s Caterham Challenge (Thompson-Gascoyne) is up to eighth and Concise 8 (Collier-Wakefield-Goodchild) is in 11th. Marie-Galante (Rivard- Clerton) diverted towards Lorient following boom damage yesterday.
It’s now a race of pure speed for Class 40 as the breeze from the west is expected to stay the same to Cape Finisterre (180 miles ahead) but dropping significantly on the approach the Spanish coast and so compression of the fleet is likely at least for the leading group of the first fifteen to Solidarité en Peloton (Erussard – Vauchel Camus) which is sixty miles behind the leader …
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