The minefields of the Transat Jacques Vabre >> Scuttlebutt Sailing News
(November 9, 2021: Day 3, 8:01 pm FR) – Stumbling start for the Transat Jacques Vabre as the double-handed crews fight for a good current in Ushant and constant pressure in the Bay of Biscay, especially for the monohulls at the rear of the fleet. However, the fastest boats leave the high pressure area and approach Spain, where they expect to get some wind.
Ultimate as we approach Cap Finistère
Finally, the Ultime trimarans regained some wind, in fact the leader managed 30 knots. The head of the fleet is made up of 4 of the 5 boats in the class, since only Banque Populaire XI is slightly behind (around fifty miles). Sodebo Ultim 3, Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, SVR – Lazartigue and Actual Ultim 3 are approaching Cap Finistère.
Yves Le Blévec is delighted to have his teammate Anthony Marchand aboard Actual Ultim 3, given the proximity and the tension on the approach to Spain: “It’s a bit of a solo Figaro here. he is accustomed. In this kind of situation, there is a lot of information that suddenly comes in, you have to make choices and know how to make the right decisions.
Ocean Fifty always in touch
Erwan Le Roux, at the head of the 50-foot fleet on Koesio, relishes his chance to challenge the immense Ultimes, “It was not necessarily planned, but after 48 hours we are still in contact with the Ultimes, we sailed with Banque Populaire all night last night. It was good to have them with us, it gave us some weather indications.
But Gilles Lamiré, at the head of the GCA – 1001 Sourires Group, is keen to keep his feet on the ground: “It may not last, we must not start dreaming, the race has only just begun!
Earlier today, Koesio found a westerly offset which allowed him to take a more direct route to the tip of Spain and achieve a better wind angle. A movement that consolidated the team’s lead. Solidarity in the peloton – Arsep and Primonial are just behind in the east. Le Roux, however, remains cautious: “I think we came out of the top, but there are still a few small gaps in front of us.
Apivia continues to lead IMOCAs but LinkedOut is getting closer
If the multihulls have freed themselves from the high pressure zone, the IMOCAs are now close to doing the same. The transition cannot come soon enough for the class whose leaders Charlie Dalin and Paul Meilhat on Apivia sail about 13 knots slower than the slower Ocean Fifty.
There was little to separate the leaders tonight. LinkedOut was second, about 12 miles behind Apivia. Morgan Lagravière, co-skipper with Thomas Rettant, said: “We did pretty well compared to some of the others, it’s nice to see, but it’s a long way to go. This afternoon, the duo moved away from Charal and the 11th Hour Racing Team Mālama. The other IMOCA boats are in a good position; on a road further west, Arkea Paprec and 11th Hour Racing Team Alaka’I are doing well while Sam Davies (GBR) is doing well in the east on Initiatives-Cœur.
The Class40s remain stuck
The class remains stuck in the high pressure zone without wind and is regrouped between Brest and Lorient just off the north-west coast of France.
Nicolas Jossier and Alexis Loison, on La Manche #EvidenceNautique, are still in the lead and are just ahead of a group of around twenty boats. This group includes Volvo, where Jonas Gerckens has already analyzed the weather around Cape Finisterre: “We spend a lot of time reading the data and using a chart table that we have. The data is still changing quite a bit, it’s very random, which means hours in front of the screen and the weather maps to choose the best route to Cape Verde.
Seafrigo – Sogestran, another boat from the chasing group plans to sail the Azores. “This course is not very common, specifies Jérémie Mion, neither Cédric Chateau nor I know it. I can’t wait to do that and we can show off the boat’s capabilities downwind.
Ranking at 6:00 p.m. (French time):
1. Sodebo Ultim 3 (Thomas Coville – Thomas Rouxel)
2. Maxi Edmond de Rothschild (Franck Cammas – Charles Caudrelier)
3. Current Ultim 3 (Yves Le Blévec – Anthony Marchand)
1. Koesio (Erwan Le Roux – Xavier Macaire)
2. Primonial (Sébastien Rogues – Mathieu Souben)
3. Solidarity in the peloton – Arsep (Thibaut Vauchel-Camus – Frédéric Duthil)
1. Apivia (Charlie Dalin – Paul Meilhat)
2. LinkedOut (Thomas Rettant – Morgan Lagravière)
3. Heart Initiatives (Samantha Davies – Nicolas Lunven)
1. The Channel #EvidenceNautique (Nicolas Jossier – Alexis Loison)
2. Tquila (Brian Thompson – Alister Richardson)
3. Lamotte Creation Module (Luke Berry – Achille Nebout)
Race details – YouTube – Facebook – Tracker
The Transat Jacques Vabre is a doubles race featuring four classes of boats starting November 7 from Lorient, France. Almost 30 years old, having raced for the first time in 1993 and every two years since, the 15th edition in 2021 drew a record of 79 boats: 5 Ultimes, 7 Ocean Fifty, 22 Imoca and 45 Class40.
The course suffers from often brutal winter conditions, with a delay this year for the finish, going from South America to Martinique in the Caribbean, in addition to various mid-Atlantic turns for the four classes.
Source: Transat Jacques Vabre, 11th Hour Racing Team