Saturday, November 21, 2009

Groupama 3 is now sound and safe in Cape Town

[Source: Cammas-Groupama] Groupama 3 arrived in Cape Town early this Saturday afternoon and immediately tied up alongside so as repairs could begin to reinforce the aft beams.

It was at around 1300 hours UTC that Franck Cammas and his nine crew made landfall after two weeks at sea: Groupama 3 had to abandon her Jules Verne Trophy record attempt on the eleventh day after breaking the port beam bulkhead. As such it has taken five days for the giant trimaran to make South Africa where Groupama's shore crew were waiting to install a `floating' workshop, given that it won't be necessary to lift the boat out onto the hard. The giant trimaran is tied up to the pontoon at the Shosholoza base, which is the South African entry in the America's Cup.

Groupama 3 arrives in Cape Town for repairs. Cape Town, 21 November 2009. Video copyright Groupama

After the gales which Groupama 3 had to avoid just after suffering damage, followed by the tradewinds fuelled by the Saint Helena High, which propelled her along towards Cape Town at over twenty knots, Franck Cammas and his men had to be towed in the last few miles as the engine had been left behind on leaving Brest on 5th November. The wind totally dropped away as they approached port before picking up just enough to enable Groupama 3 to finish the journey under sail, although she had to sit out in the harbour for a while due to the shipping. The crew were able to fill up on fresh produce the minute they arrived, prior to setting to work to get the trimaran back in shape in order to set sail for Brest during the first few days of December.

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