80 miles! This is the remaining distance between the leaders and the Lanzarote gate in front of Marina Rubicon, in a bay protected from the sea and the northwesterly winds, which will allow us to hear the first stories after two weeks at sea.
The wind has seriously dropped over the fleet with spinnakers, gennakers and code zeros getting out of the bags, pulling yachts and sailors on a downwind course in an 8 to 15 knot flow. Tapio Lehtinen flying his biggest spinnaker (7.4 knots) was unable to catch-up Simon Curwen yet, who’s sailing a slightly more downwind course. The British sailor, 2nd in the 2001 Mini-Transat, and winner of a windy 2007 Fastnet in a decimated double-handed class, has resources.
1354 miles were covered by Simon so far who sailed along the Asturian coast early in the race, compared with Tapio’s 1456 who followed his West option. Pat Lawless to the East will get stronger winds for the last 100 miles, but will it be enough to fight-off Abhilash Tomy and Guy de Boer?
Some complications are coming for a fast, turboed, Ian Herbert Jones and a hard working Elliott Smith tinkering with mast foot fittings, leaks and his hard dodger, as a wind hole will catch them from the North over the week-end. Mark Sinclair in front of Cape St Vincent, and Arnaud and Damien around Lisbon, will have to negotiate the same hole early next week.