TJV Day 18. Neck and Neck Through the Doldrums

Repaired - and back in business.
Repaired – and back in business.

by Matthew Thomas

The ‘Two Pips’ are pushing hard and have gained back the 8th place they lost yesterday afternoon.

They’re neck and neck with ‘SNBSM Espoir Compétition’ and closing rapidly on both ‘Zetra’ and ‘Groupe Setin’ as they work their way through the Doldrums.

Looking at the weather files, they’re just past halfway through and sailing upwind which will give them some more time to work on their spinnaker. As they leave the doldrums, it’ll be close reaching to Fernando de Noronha which is 670nm away and where class leader ‘Le Conservateur’ is currently, with a slim lead of 16nm on ‘V and B’.

Big news yesterday was the arrival of ‘PRB’ who crossed the line ahead of ‘Banque Populaire’ who followed them in. Talking about the race, Vincent Riou revealed how they had a total failure of their nav system and had sailed the entire race with only COG and SOG information (Course over ground and speed over ground).

Now all attention is turning to the Class40 fleet, where up-and-coming sailors, many with aspirations to move up to the super powerful 60′ IMOCA class are locked in battle as they sail towards the finish in Italjaï.

Will ‘Le Conservateur’ continue to hold their lead? Can they hold off ‘V and B’ and in the pack behind them, will ‘Zetra’ and ‘Group Setin’ be able to hold off ‘The Pips’?

We’ll get to watch these battle over the next few days and see how it all pans out….

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