East proves best – Jean-Luc Van Den Heede extends lead over Mark Slats to 575 miles.
73-year old Jean-Luc Van Den Heede (Rustler 36 Matmut) has established a clear lead over the chasing fleet, but 2nd placed Mark Slats (Rustler 36 Ohpen Maverick) dived south this morning in the hope of hitching a ride on the next low pressure system swinging in from thew West. For latest positions go to: www.goldengloberace.com/livetracker/
Don McIntyre, the Race Chairman confirmed today: “The situation is that Philippe is now in the Chichester Class as if he had made one stop. So if he now pulls in to Cape Town that would be a second infringement and he would be out of the Race altogether. He can apply for a time penalty for the phone call (As Istvan Kopar did after stopping in the Cape Verde Islands two weeks ago) and we will reconsider that, because as far as we can ascertain, he did not receive any materiel assistance other than psychological support. If successful, this would reinstate him in the GGR, and allow him to continue in the Chichester Class after he stops in Cape Town.”
Nabil Amra, the Palestinian/American who was forced to retire from the GGR two weeks ago after suffering an identical failure with his Beaufort wind vane self-steering, has every sympathy for Philippe’s situation. He said today. “I have my fingers crossed for Philippe. This is a bad spot for it to happen. I had a fear that the next blow he got from behind was going to do the same thing [to his wind vane]. The winds may be with him but that doesn’t change the feelings that well up inside when you see that useless bit of gear hanging off the back. 1,500 miles is just possible with a following wind, but he will be completely demolished by the time he makes Cape Town.
Palestinian Nabil Amra was forced to retire from the Golden Globe Race two weeks ago when the self-steering system on his Biscay 36 Liberty II failed in exactly the way that it has done on PRB
Everyone says that you should balance the rig so that the boat sails herself. But to make it do that for any appreciable time when every third wave is knocking you far enough off course that she just starts charging off in errant directions, is not easy. It takes only an hour to realize how futile that is (especially if you are beating into the winds!). You then resign yourself to hand steering for 18 hours a day, which is when the soul sucking starts! This will be when Philippe’s real “race” starts. I’m sure he will surprise us all. This is when he has to dig really deep, from a place that nobody ever sees. When your ship is wounded, so are you!
He is in my thoughts!”
Jean-Jacques Laurent from PRB added. "Philippe has had a remarkable race since the start from Les Sables d'Olonne. We knew that this Golden Globe Race would be particularly difficult. It's an extreme race. Philippe makes his choices as a good sailor. Our priority is that he arrives in Cape Town in good health and that he can repair PRB. We know how important this race is to him and he has all our support to start again in the Chichester class."
Britain's Susie Goodall, becalmed last week, is now back up to speed in 6th place with her Rustler 36 DHL Starlight.
Fellow Frenchman Jean-Luc Van Den Heede sailing the Rustler 36 Matmut who shadowed PRB’s course down the centre of the South Atlantic, continues to lead the Race, some 575 miles ahead of second placed Dutchman Mark Slats (Rustler 36 Ohpen Maverick) who chose to take the longer westerly Trade wind route. This morning, he tacked south to avoid a high pressure system that may yet entrap Van Den Heede, in expectation of riding the strong favourable winds generated by the next low pressure system sweeping in from the west in the hope that this could close the gap or even leapfrog him ahead of the French leader.
Norwegian Are Wiig (OE 32 Olleanna) has moved up to 3rd place displacing Estonian Uku Randmaa (Rustler 36 One and All) during the weekend. Britain’s Susie Goodall, who reported last Friday ‘IVE DONE A SUPER JOB OF FINDING THE WINDLESS PATCH IN THE SOUTH ATLANTIC’ has now found fresh wind again and her Rustler 36 DHL Starlight is moving well in 6th place, but Finland’s Tapio Lehtinen (Gaia 36 Asteria) has yet to find a fix for his solar panel and engine problems and is now very low on battery power.
LATEST POSITIONS AT 08:00 UTC TODAY.
|Skipper||Distance to finish||Miles run last 24hrs||Distance behind leader|
Jean- Luc VDH (FRA)
Rustler 36 Matmut
Mark Slats (NED)
Rustler 36 Ohpen Maverick
Are Wiig (NOR)
OE 32 Olleanna
Uku Randmaa (EST)
Rustler 36 One and All
Tapio Lehtinen (FIN)
Susie Goodall GBR)
Rustler 36 DHL Starlight
Igor Zaretskiy (RUS)
Endurance 35 Esmeralda
Gregor McGuckin (IRE)
Biscay 36 Hanley Energy Endurance
Loïc Lepage (FRA)
Nicholson 32 Laaland
Abhilash Tomy (IND)
Suhaili replica Thuriya
Istvan Kopar (USA)
Tradewind 35 Puffin
Mark Sinclair (Aus)
Lello 34 Coconut
1 Philippe Péché (FRA) Rustler 36 PRB
2 Antoine Cousot (FRA) Biscay 36 Métier Intérim
1 Francesco Cappelletti (ITA) Endurance 35 007
Ertan Beskardes (GBR) Rustler 36 Lazy Otter
Kevin Farebrother (AUS) Tradewind 35 Sagarmatha
Nabil Amra (PAL) Biscay 36 Liberty II
Skippers soundcloud: soundcloud.com/goldengloberace
Cover photo: Philippe Péché, pictured when sailing through the Marina Rubicon gate in the Canaries. This shows the special alloy telescopic tiller fitted to PRB which snapped later in the race, together with the Beaufort wind vane self steering system which failed two days before when the actuating arm linked to the tiller (circled in red) broke in the same way that it did on Nabil Amra's Beaufort system two weeks before. Photo: Christophe Favreau
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