As expected, the weather is abating for the Bay of Biscay crossing, where the lead trio is now sailing 170 miles apart, covering about 100 miles/day. Abhilash, should be closing the gap with an exclusive SW wind for him this afternoon, and is now only 280 miles from the line, 100 miles behind Kirsten. Simon in Chichester Class is only 110 miles from Les Sables d’Olonne and could arrive as early as tomorrow Thursday, before the wind drops.
Predicting is always tricky, and we will be reporting the latest detailed ETAs this evening. The models and programmes differ but an arrival on Friday for Kirsten is not entirely off the table, despite a sudden wind drop in the morning. Abhilash is taking advantage of wind coming back from the SW for an arrival 12 hours to 18 hours after Minnehaha. The next 48 hours will not be easy, neither at sea, nor on land, but the party at the finish will be fantastic! It’s in fact starting already with the arrival in Les Sables of relatives, teams, and the big GGR family, nearly 8 months after we saw each other.
We spoke to Abhilash and Simon (CH) yesterday, who were completely unaware of the others’ positions! In fact, they both think they are several hundred, if not thousands of miles behind Kirsten, who they imagine is waiting for them eating ice cream on a sunny terrace. Last week it was Kirsten who said that she was mentally preparing for the possibility of defeat, so we’ll see what she says on her final call today… So close on the water, yet so far from reality.
In the South of the North Hemisphere, Jeremy (CH) continues to sail at good pace, 2,700 miles from the finish at the latitude of Conakry with an ETA 20 days after the leaders, under the 25 day gap from Hobart. Captain Gugg, who has caught the south ridge of the low-pressure system, is only 2,000 miles from Les Sables for a mid-May arrival, and Guy Waites (not racing) estimates his remaining time at sea at 40 days. Hold fast guys!