Monday, November 17, 2008

Vendée Globe leadership goes back and forth

[Source: Vendée Globe] Jean Le Cam (VM Materiaux) takes back the lead in the east, now calculated to be 13 miles ahead of Peyron, but now that becomes something of a moot point. He is merely closer to the theoretical rhumb line, which does not take any account of the most favourable crossing point of the Doldrums, somewhere around 26 deg west.

The key figure on the stats this evening is Peyron’s distance covered towards the finish between the two polls, and that is a mere 9.6 miles when he has clearly sailed something in excess of 43 to 45 miles.

Peyron gybed about two hours before the 1900h GMT position report, while Seb Josse (BT) in third did so about three hours before him.

So with the Cape Verde Islands behind them, the next obstacle down the line will be the Doldrums which the leaders are expected to reach later tomorrow night. The question tonight is how long Le Cam, who is 135 miles to the east of Peyron - will stick with his eastern position. The forecasts suggest he may even have a little more breeze, but his difficulty in getting back to the west increases as he goes south.

Day 8 of the Vendée Globe. South of the Cape Verde Islands, 16 November 2008. Video copyright Vendée Globe

Mike Golding, GBR, and Brian Thompson, GBR, share this evening’s honours as posting the joint highest VMG averaged over the last 24 hours, 12.8 knots. Golding, in seventh on Ecover 3, is 85.4 miles behind leader Le Cam, same as Yann Elies (Generali) who is some 68 miles to his west. Thompson has made up nearly 60 miles on the leaders since the early morning position report but has Jérémie Beyou some 68 miles ahead in 10th, and this evening is making the passage through the Cape Verdes. He was 13 miles off the north east corner of Sao Nicolau this evening, which equates to being about a day behind the leading boat at the moment on the simple measure that Peyron was at the same point, give or take 20 miles, this time last night.

Sam Davies, GBR, is not far behind. ROXY is out to Thompson’s west, passing outside the islands and at the same time is trying to maintain her leverage on Brian, 26 miles NW of the outermost island.

Dee Caffari, GBR, (Aviva) makes steady progress in 16th place. She is about 200 miles further offshore from Johnny Malbon, GBR, (Artemis). Malbon is computed to be 73 miles behind Caffari in terms of DTF. Artemis is closest to the African coast, just 140 miles off shore. Steve White, GBR, (Toe in the Water) is on the western flank, on the same line as Davies, Wavre and co, but some 167 miles directly astern of him is Foncia (Michel Desjoyeaux).

Behind them, Bernard Stamm, SUI, (Cheminées Poujoulat), 24th, continues to eat up the miles. He has sailed the highest mileage of the fleet, 312.8 and has just gybed, now sailing a high angle to – perhaps – make for the west of Madeira, 102 miles away.



Post a Comment

<< Home