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Offshore Racing

Offshore Racing – Friday, October 31, 2014
Friday, October 31, 2014   
The very light wind zone around the St-Helena anticyclone forced the teams to go far South. The leading trio crossed the 40th parallel during this night, and thanks to the most Eastern position, closest to the finish line, 'DongFeng' with Charles Caudrelier FRA has taken the lead. However, the chasers 'Abu Dhabi' with Ian Walker GBR and 'Team Brunel' with Bouwe Bekking NED at sailing at sight 0,2 and 2,3 miles behind. 19 miles farther back follows 'Vestas Wind' with Chris Nicholson AUS ready to close-up in the final sprint. The backmaker 'Team SCA' with Samantha Davis GBR is still loosing miles and is now 297 miles behind.
The race viewer, the daily report, the onboard reports and the videos.
Offshore Racing – Thursday, October 30, 2014
Thursday, October 30, 2014   (Image © Mapfre)
The leading boats have now reached the latitude of the port of call Cape Town, thanks to a steady, but not too strong wind. Roughly 2'300 miles to the East are left to the finish line. However, the St-Helena High Pressure System has moved slightly South and it may well be, that the teams duck farther South. Not too much, as Race Control has set an Ice Gate at the 42nd parallel to be passed northwards because of Iceberg warnings.
In the past hours, the leading boats have closed up. The trio in front sails practically in sight ! 'Abu Dhabi' (Ian Walker GBR) leads again with only a 2,5 miles' advance on 'Team Brunel' (Bouwe Bekking NED). 'Team Vestas Wind' with Chris Nicholson NZL is only 3,7 miles from the leader. The all-female 'Team SCA' (Samantha Davis GBR) did not benefit from the close-up so far. They are still last with a deficit of 275 miles this morning.
This afternoon, most of the boats will reach a first front from the West and the 'Superhighway of the South' begins. The race viewer, the daily report and the videos.
Thursday, October 30, 2014   (Image © Denis Tisserand)
20 hours before deadline of the Crowd-Funding-Action, Yvan Bourgnon SUI has reached the objective of 40'000 €uro ! This means, that the adventure ride around the Globe on a six-meter-beach-catamaran will continue. 20 % of the journey are left, from Sri Lanka across the Indian Ocean, passing the Suez Canal, thru the Mediterranean Sea and back to France. As soon as the new catamaran will be ready - probably in January 2015 - Bourgnon will continue his ride around the world.
The collectrion website and the project website.
Offshore Racing – Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Wednesday, October 29, 2014   
Sailing down South along the South American coast in a moderate 15 kn breeze, the first teams have now crossed the 30° parallel. The St-Helena High Pressure System blocking the direct route to Cape Town has slightly moved eastwards, and the fleet is now about to change course direction the port of call.
'Team Brunel' with Bouwe Bekking NED is still leading 24 miles ahead of Ian Walker GBR with 'Abu Dhabi'. The last-ranked ht 'SCA' with Samantha Davis GBR is 273 miles back.
The race viewer, the daily report and the videos.
Offshore Racing – Tuesday, October 28, 2014
Tuesday, October 28, 2014   
Entering the influence zone of the St-Helena anticyclone, widely extended to the West, the seven teams going South direction Roaring Forties have started to search for individual paths to pass the calm patches ahead. Some position changes have therefore occurred as the boats heading more westerly - hoping for more wind - have a longer way to the finish. For the moment, 'Team Brunel' with Bouwe Bekking NED, still making good speed, is courageously sticking to the most Estern route and the race viewer indicates a 58 miles advance on 'Abu Dhabi' with Ian Walker GBR, the most Southern boat this morning.
A report on the event website explains the functioning of the race tracker.
The reports from the teams and the videos.
Tuesday, October 28, 2014   (Image © Alexis Courcoux)
On the coming Sunday, the start to the classic Solo Transactlantic Race from St. Malo FRA to Pointe à Pitre FRA/Caribbeans, the classic 'Route du Rhum', will be given, a Regatta full of highlights.
A special group, the 'Classe Ultime', will incorporate the eight big multihulls: in addition to four MOD-70 trimarans with the single-hand specialists Francis Joyon FRA ('IDEC') and Thomas Coville FRA ('Sodebo'), the largest racing Multis will participate. Yann Guichard FRA will sail the 140-foot maxi trimaran 'Spindrift' (ex-Banque Populaire') for the first time solo in a race. Loïck Peyron FRA will also be very busy racing with the 100-foot 'Banque Populaire' (ex-'Groupama'). The largest fleet with 40 participants are the Class 40. In addition to the routiniers of the Class, there are interesting personalities on the entry list such as the Paralympic Champion Damien Séguin FRA, the Pole Vault Olympic Champion Jean Galfione FRA or the Mini-Transat winner Giancarlo Pedote ITA. In the IMOCA Open 60, the Vendée-Globe winner François Gabart FRA is the most cited favorite. In the Open Class, Robin Knox-Johnson GBR is present with a modified Open 60. The Englishman, age 75, won the first nonstop solo round-the-world regatta 'Golden Globe' 45 years ago.
On the pas weekend, the Race-Village has been opened. Over 1 mio spectators will be attending this most spectacular sail-racing event live and many more will follow it on the Internet and TV. The entry list and the event website with many reports and news on the event.
Offshore Racing – Monday, October 27, 2014
Monday, October 27, 2014   (Image © Dongfeng)
The race down South along the Brazilian Coast goes on with speeds of 15 to 20 kn until the fresh West breeze in the Roaring Forties will be reached, inspite of a detour of at least 800 miles. The positions did not change except between the backmarker duo 'SCA' and 'Mapfre'. 'Abu Dhabi' with Ian Walker GBR leads now with a 12 miles' gap on 'Team Brunel' with Bouwe Bekking NED. 'Vestas Wind' with Chris Nicholson NZL follows 65 miles back. The all-female team 'SCA' with Samantha Davis GBR has lost much ground and is down on the last place again. Their deficit on the leader is now 231 miles.
The race viewer, the daily report and the videos.
Offshore Racing – Sunday, October 26, 2014
Sunday, October 26, 2014   
The seven teams have been underway for two weeks now and have completed roughly half of the planned distance from Alicante to Cape Town. The passage of the Equator has stretched the fleet with a clearly leading duo to up to 250 miles, now back again to 146 miles in the drag race in speeds of 18 to 20 kn along the Brazilian Coast. The huge St-Helena anticyclone with its calm zone over the South Atlantic blocks the direct way to Cape Town. Up to now, all teams have chosen to detour on the West direction Roaring Forties to reach the highway to South Africa.
'Abu Dhabi' with Ian Walker GBR still leads 23 miiles ahead of 'Team Brunel' with Bouwe Bekking NED this morning. 'Vestas Wind' with Chris Nicholson NZL follows on rank 3. The only position changes of the last days were among 'Mapfre' (Iker Martinez ESP) and the all-female Team 'SCA' with Samantha Davis GBR on the ranks 6 and 7. For the moment, the Girls are on 6th as the Spanish, 146 miles behind the leaders, head to a more westerly route.
The race viewer, the daily report and the videos.
Offshore Racing – Saturday, October 25, 2014
Saturday, October 25, 2014   (Image © Mapfre)
Driven by a well-established Southern trade wind, the seven teams continued their race down South in an unchanged sequence at a speed average of 15 kns. The waypoint Fernando de Norhona Islands off the Brazilian Coast has now be passed by all boats with somewhat reduced gaps. To split or not to split ... this is the strategic decision to be taken how to detour the huge anticylone of St-Helena, ..... to go Southwest and take a much longer route, or to have the guts to cross the calms directly going Southeast with all risks to be stalled. Up-to-now, all yachts are still sticking to the West, with 'Abu Dhabi' (Ian Walker GBR) leading 17 miles ahead of 'Brunel' (Bouwe Bekking NED). 'Västas Wind' with Chris Nicholson NZL was able to reduce the gap to the leading duo - as all persuers did - on 24 miles, and even the last-position all-female Team 'SCA' reduced the backlog substantially and is now, still on rank 7 but side-by-side with 'Mapfre', 98 miles behind the leader.
The race viewer, the daily report and the videos.
Saturday, October 25, 2014   
The Swiss single-hand-sailor and adventurer Yvan Bourgnon is fighting to terminate his round-the-globe journey on a beach catamaran. 80 % of the course were behind when he crashed his multihull on a rock in Sri Lanka. Bourgnon tried all to find money for a new boat, among other activities with a Crowd-Funding action coming to an end tomorrow. 40'000 EUR is the target, until this morning, 32'289 EUR were promised, becoming due only if the total sum will be achieved. A video summary of his jounrey so far and a detailed report has been posted on the collection website. Your kind help to bring this project to a happy end is very much appreciated. Thank you.
Offshore Racing – Friday, October 24, 2014
Friday, October 24, 2014   
More of the same ! The fleet progressed well with unchanged positions at speeds around 15 kn in the southern trade wind and has already crossed the Equator with 'Abu Dhabi' of Ian Walker GBR leading 10 miles ahead of Brunel' with Bouwe Bekking NED this morning. All other teams have again lost miles on the leaders. 'Vestas Wind' mit Chris Nicholson NZL as 3rd is now 82 miles back, and the last-ranked 'SCA' with Samantha Davis GBR has lost 230 miles. Considering the wind pattern to the waypoint Fernando de Noronha off the Brazilian Coast and beyond, the drag race might well go on for a while.
The race viewer and the event website with apologies of the organisers for difficulties with the website to be corrected soon.
Friday, October 24, 2014   
Pushed by a fresh Mistral, all teams still racing have crossed the finish line in the meantime. Winner in calculated time is the J/122 'Artie' of Lee Satariano MLT, followed by the X-44 'xp-Act' of Josef Schultheiss GER and the Neo 400 'Neo Banks Sail Racing' of Paolo Semeraro ITA. 'Shockwave' USA, 3rd in time sailed, is on the 32nd rank in calculated time. Only 48 of the 107 starters arrived back in La Valetta in this intially very light wind race, ending in a Mistral storm.
The ranking list and the reports.
Offshore Racing – Thursday, October 23, 2014
Thursday, October 23, 2014   
What had been apparent for the last two days concerning the passage thru the Doldrums, has again been confirmed yesterday. The Round-the-World veterans Ian Walker GBR ('Abu Dhabi') and Bouve Bekking ('Team Brunel') sailing side-by-side in the West, as well as Chris Nicholson AUS ('Västas Wind') on the weaker and longer Eastern course 95 miles behind, going South straightforward, are the leading trio and are about to accelerate even more in the 15-18 kn Southern trade winds heading for the waypoint Fernando de Noronha off the Brazilian Coast. The four boats on search of wind in the middle of the course are constantly loosing ground and move this morning 2 to 3 kn slower as the extremists on both sides. Their distances to the leader are at present 132 to 174 miles. Provided, the Southern trade winds and the St-Helena High stay as presently displayed on the map, this might well be a preliminary decision on the top positions.
The race-viewer, the daily report and the videos.
Offshore Racing – Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014   
As expected, the Doldrums slowed the boats more or less down, depending on the tactical option selected to pass thru this variable wind zone. This morning UTC, 'Abu Dhabi' with Ian Walker GBR regained the first place 9 miles ahead of 'Team Brunel' mit Bouwe Bekking NED. The two round-the-world veterans opted for the most western course and it remains open, whether they will reach the southern trade winds as first. The other 5 boats - except 'Vestas Wind' sticking to a direct South course on the extreme East - are in a 'snakes and ladder' mode constantly loosing ground. So the all-female Team 'SCA' with Samatha Davis GBR who left the promising corridor behind the leaders going East, loosing almost 50 miles and a rank, leaving them on 6th together with 'Mapfre' with Iker Martinez ESP 7th, both around 105 miles behind the first this morning 6 hrs UTC.
The race viewer and the event website.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014   (Image © Kurt Arrigo)
Yesterday evening at 22.42 h CET, the 100-foot Super-Maxi 'Esimit Europa' with Jochen Schümann GER took the line honours after 3 days and 10 hours. Early this morning, the 70-foot Maxi 'Ran' with Niklas Zennström SWE and 'Shockwave' crossed the finish line. The next persuers - lead by the Ker 50 'Varuna' with Jens Kellinghusen GER - are about to round the Lampedusa island, the final waypoint before the arrival.
The race-viewer, the results and the reports.
Offshore Racing – Tuesday, October 21, 2014
Tuesday, October 21, 2014   (Image © Steffan Coppers/Brunel)
Moderate stable trade winds move the fleet southwards without significant speed differences. Today, the innertropical convergence zone will probably be reached, influencing the positions of and distances between the boats. As expected yesterday, 'Team Brunel' with Bouwe Bekking NED has taken the lead, 18 miles ahead of 'Abu Dhabi' with Ian Walker GBR. 'Dongfeng' with Charles Caudrelier FRA descended on the 3rd place with 28 miles backlog. The all-female 'Team SCA' reduced the deficit on the leader to 61 miles, but remains last of the fleet.
The race viewer and the event website.
Tuesday, October 21, 2014   (Image © Kurt Arrigo)
Lull conditions prevailed also yesterday at the Middlesea Race, and the bulk of the fleet still trailed North of Sicily at a 1 kn speed. Only the three Maxis on top of the fleet made some progress. 'Esimit Europa II' with Jochen Schümann GER, followed closely by 'Ran', rounded the Pantelleria Island, the second-last waypoint before the finish, this morning. 'Shockwave' has lost some miles, but is still in the race for the line honours. The expected time of arrival of the leading boats is Wednesday morning, provided the announced fresh West wind will fill in.
The race viewer and the reports.
Offshore Racing – Monday, October 20, 2014
Monday, October 20, 2014   (Image © Matt Knighton/Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing/Volvo Ocean Race )
The trade winds South of the Cape Verde Islands are relatively light with 10-15 kn, but nevertheless, the fleet advances at speed around 10-12 kn and will soon reach the innertropical convergence zone with its unpredictable thunderstorms and lulls.
The still leading Chinese 'Dongfeng' with Charles Caudrelier FRA and the closest chasers 'Mapfre with Iker Martinez ESP and 'Team Vestas Wind' with Chris Nicholson AUS passed the islands on the East, while 'Brunel' with Bouwe Bekking BED, 'Abu Dhabi' with Ian Walker GBR, 'Alvimedica' with Charlie Enright USA and 'SCA' with Samantha Davies GBR went West. This will most probably pay off today as the the fresher breeze allows a 2 kn faster speed. 'SCA' with Samantha Davis GBR, having lost much mileage after being tied in a fishing net, has reduced the backlog on the leader to 61 miles. Here the video. The race viewer, the video of the day and the event website.
Monday, October 20, 2014   (Image © Rolex / Kurt Arrigo)
Light to very light winds dominate this year'd Middlesea Race. The leading 'Esimit Europa II' with Jochen Schümann GER rounded the Stromboli island yesterday afternoon, but did not move on much farther. This morning, the 100-foot Maxi trailed with a speed of 0,8 kn North of Sicily. The two immediate pursuers, the 70-footers 'Ran' and 'Shockwave', reduced their backlogs on the leader on a more southern course. The USA 'Shockwave' is 47th in interim's rankings in calculated time, 'Esimit' is 50th.
The race viewer and the reports.