Race 14 Day 11: Boat speeds improve as fleet sails out of area of high pressureBack to archive
The new wind has arrived with boat speeds picking up and the frontrunners extending their lead over the rest of the fleet by more than 200 miles.
The nine yachts that didn’t manage to outrun the ridge of high pressure that engulfed them are now running with their spinnakers up with the new south easterly winds.
The front three yachts are beating upwind on a north easterly course after getting as far east as they could to escape the complicated weather systems.
Derry~Londonderry~Doire has held onto its lead and has also started the Ocean Sprint section of the course. It is followed by Jamaica Get All Right and GREAT Britain in third.
PSP Logistics came out of Stealth Mode and has moved up to fifth place on the leaderboard. Skipper Chris Hollis said: “It was a pretty successful phase for us, pulling back a lot of miles and then some on the middle of the pack, which has now given us a fighting chance.
“The problem is we still need to make an easterly heading at some point. So a pretty big knock on the other tack is to be expected at some point. It is just a matter of when you do to minimise the damage of the negative tack.
“We are in company of Henri Lloyd and OneDLL who snuck over the horizon yesterday afternoon while we were on the edge of the southerly and dead zone. It is great to have them behind us for once. However,OneDLL having been wounded early on this race is on a storming comeback mission, and Henri Lloyd… Well, the leaders of the regatta are just about unstoppable at times.”
Rich Gould, skipper of Invest Africa, in tenth, said: “We were also pleased to see today, that after three days of chasing Gareth and his Qingdao team, we had finally managed to get past them, but now the hunter has become the hunted! I am certain that Qingdao will be pushing to get back ahead of us, in fact now as I type we can see them off our starboard quarter.
“The weather forecast is still a major point of focus and it’s looking like the remainder of this race is going to be upwind. With this in mind where I position the Invest Africa in the next 36 to 48 hours is going to have a big effect on what place we finish in.
“With the bitter taste of three consecutive twelfth places still lingering I am determined to make sure we are in the best possible geographical position before the wind really comes on to the nose.”
To track the fleet's progress, click here.
To read all the skipper reports, click here.
To read the crew diaries, click here.