Golden Globe Race. Jean-Luc Van Den Heede passes through Hobart film gate

Jean Luc Van Den Heede during his brief stop at the Hobart film gate.
Don McIntyre gave Jean Luc Van Den Heede that hat at the 1986 BOC challenge Sydney stop. He has been wearing it on every Solo circumnavigation since as it is the perfect design!
Pic by Christophe Favreau/PPL/GGR

Jean-Luc Van Den Heede reached the Hobart film gate on Saturday to drop film and letters before heading out of Storm Bay to resume his lead in the Golden Globe Race.

The 73-year old Matmut skipper was in good spirits and sighted the lengthy preparation work for his 1,600 mile lead. “The boat is good, the self steering works well and I have only minor problems like a leaking window to deal with.”

Jean-Luc remained at anchor for over 3 hours completing media interviews before making most of the calm conditions to check his mast and rigging. He also tried to catch some sleep, but after 15 minutes returned on deck complaining that the conditions were “too calm to sleep!”

He then set off to cross the South Pacific Ocean and round Cape Horn predicting that he would complete this solo circumnavigation back in Les Sables d’Olonne during the first week of February within 210 days.

Dutchman Mark Slats, the second placed skipper, trails Van Den Heede by 1,600 miles and is not expected to reach Hobart for another 10 days.