The Route du Rhum 2022 continues to be a troublesome race for the file fleet with quite a lot of issues in a single day as a violent storm entrance hit all fleets
The Route du Rhum’s fame as one of many hardest offshore races within the solo crusing calendar is proving to be true as soon as once more.
Final evening the IMOCA 60s went by means of the second Atlantic entrance of the race and, as Pip Hare on Medallia put it on a video despatched from onboard, “This one means enterprise, it’s obtained tooth!”.
The system introduced gusts nudging 40 knots and resulted in three dismastings inside a 3 hour interval, and the capsize of an Ocean 50. All skippers are secure and unhurt.
First Louis Burton on the IMOCA Bureau Vallée dismasted yesterday early night. Burton was mendacity ninth on the time. He’s secure and motoring again to shore.
At round 2000hrs final evening, the main Ocean Fifty trimaran, Solidaires en Peloton – ARSEP skippered by Thibaut Vauchel-Camus, capsized. The skipper is secure contained in the central hull and awaiting rescue round 400 miles west of the Portuguese coast.
Two Classe 40s additionally dismasted. One of many main pack, champion free-skier Aurélien Ducroz on Crosscall misplaced his rig, as did Amélie Grassi on La Boulangère Bio who was in tenth place whereas about 350 miles northwest of Cape Finisterre. All skippers are secure.
They be part of Damien Seguin, whose IMOCA was dismasted two days in the past after being struck by a cargo ship, and was returning to Lorient below motor and utilizing a kite-power system. Developed by Yves Parlier, the Liberty kite doesn’t require a mast to assist it. Seguin is anticipated to make landfall later at this time.
Race followers and followers of Pip Hare had been involved when Medallia’s tracker didn’t present her place this morning, though her crew have confirmed that it’s only a tracker problem and all is nicely onboard, and she or he continues racing.
Situations had been difficult, as Conrad Colman on the IMOCA Think about recounted: “I’m in the midst of the method to the entrance and at present have 35 knots sustained, gusting 38kts kind of upwind with two reefs and the J3. It’s as much as 39kts, the boat is doing 16kts over the bottom and each on occasion it has an enormous, massive touchdown off the waves. It’s fairly lumpy and it’s as nicely it’s darkish as higher to not see this grumpy sea.”
Within the IMOCAs, Charlie Dalin continues his dominance on Apivia, having constructed a powerful lead through the early levels due to a major boat velocity benefit.
Dalin holds an 80-mile benefit over Jeremie Beyou on Charal and Thomas Ruyant on LinkedOut, with Paul Meilhat (Biotherm), Kevin Escoffier (Holcim-PRB), Maxime Sorel (V&B Monbana Mayenne) and Justine Mettreaux (Teamwork.web) forming a decent chasing pack inside 30 miles. Managing how laborious to push in a bunch this aggressive shall be a problem, particularly for skippers in new boats who shall be carefully eyeing IMOCA qualification miles.
Tight on the entrance for the Ultimes
The main Ultims are actually largely away from the worst of the climate now and are racing south-west at excessive common speeds of over 30 knots.
Charles Caudrelier (Maxi Edmond de Rothschild) has regained his lead over nearest rival François Gabart (SVR-Lazartigue) by simply over 25 nautical miles. Caudrelier is barely to windward and might be able to maintain the higher breeze longer as they method the Bermuda excessive ridge of lighter winds.
Though the upper proportion of upwind crusing within the early levels of the race means the Ultimes will not be set to interrupt the course file by any important margin, the enormous trimarans are already over midway on the 3542-nautical miles course to Guadeloupe, and look set to solely get faster over the second half of the race.
Caudrelier commented final evening: “François got here again at me within the gentle airs, shortly earlier than the Azores. He was going straight, whereas I couldn’t! I tacked 4 or 5 occasions, which took loads of vitality. I took a barely extra bodily demanding choice than his within the archipelago however, ultimately, it got here all the way down to virtually the identical factor.
“It’s nonetheless a little bit of a struggle by way of circumstances. It’s removed from dream stuff. We’re impatiently ready to have the ability to take off the foul climate gear and revel in secure winds. Right here it’s up and down between 20 and 30 knots and much from restful.”
Caudrelier has had his four-hour time penalty for being OCS at the beginning dismissed. Gitana crew supervisor Cyril Dardashti defined: “We despatched the GPS monitor of the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild over all the begin section, in addition to the positioning of the Yellow Brick beacon supplied by the organisation. The 2 agree and present that we had been 50 m from the beginning line at 2.15 p.m. when the gun was fired”.
Armel Le Cleac’h on Banque Populaire XI is mentioning the rear of the Ultim fleet, having restarted the race yesterday after repairing foil injury. Le Cleac’h had returned to Lorient in Brittany on Thursday and set off yesterday afternoon.
Banque Popularie XI’s daggerboard snapped on Thursday morning, lower than 24 hours after the race begin.
Le Cleac’h reported listening to “a crack”. He reported: “There was no warning. It broke in two seconds. It’s laborious to consider.”
Having needed to abandon his earlier maxi trimaran within the final Route du Rhum race in 2018, Le Cleac’h’ was decided to restart this one
“It ended badly 4 years in the past, we misplaced a ship. This yr, we need to end the story.”
Final yr’s Class 40 winner Yoann Richomme (Parpec-Arkea) has sailed again into third place after taking his statutory 4 hours penalty for crossing the beginning line early.
He described final evening’s circumstances: “It was quick however very, very violent after the entrance. The boat was leaping off the waves. It felt like the whole lot was going to blow up at any second!”
“It was freakishly scary. Xavier Macaire appeared to be the one who attacked essentially the most and I admit that I didn’t attempt to sustain along with his tempo, particularly after seeing Aurélien Ducroz and Amélie Grassi dismasting behind my stern. I actually thought we had been all going to endure the identical destiny.
“I do know what it’s to lose your mast in a lot of these circumstances. It’s extremely laborious to undo all of the traces and cables in tough seas and at evening too. It’s a stark reminder to maintain a lid on it.”
British born Luke Berry (Lamotte Module Creation) additionally reported this morning, “It was a powerful entrance and I can perceive why some dismasted. I hope they’re OK. I misplaced two aerials and so now I really feel like I’m crusing blind and the remainder of the course goes to be a little bit of headache.”
Two different Class 40s have additionally retired – Croatian Ivica Kostelic on ACI has a number of technical issues together with autopilot failure, Kéni Piperol (Captain Alternance) was taking up water, and Pierre Casenave-Péré (Legallais) suffered rigging issues. All are heading for La Coruña.
Ocean 50 fleet
The multihulls are particularly weak to confused sea states, and the Ocean 50s racing north of the Azores are actually by means of the entrance in 15-20kts westerly winds however nonetheless face cross-seas and gusty circumstances.
“Now on this leg in direction of the Azores it’s fairly tough, with cross seas and some squalls which are unforgiving. We’ve to remain vigilant, ”defined Quentin Vlamynck on Arkema, now main the Ocean Fifty fleet after Thibaut Vauchel-Camus’s capsize.
“This accident was an enormous wake-up name for all of us to calm issues down. Me? I proceed to sail cautiously. You need to watch out and that leaves no time to fall asleep, particularly since you must take into consideration what’s subsequent.”
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