samedi 22 octobre 2011

From my Armchair...

Hi all, not a lot of time to comment this time but since the race is slowly unfolding it is intersting to observe some details.
One is that unlike to Volvo where winner of the first leg to Cape town is usualy the winner of the race on Mini it seems to be better not to win (like the superstition about the prologue races). Corentin in 2005 was the last guy who won the Transat after winning the first leg. Then Isabelle almost abandoned in the second leg after dominating the first one in 2007, Thomas who won the 2009 didn't even finish on the podium of the first leg (off course counting in Faboulus Francisco). And now in 2011 Sebastian abandoned after winning the leg 1.
Other is that Cabo Verdes again proved to make a selection in the fleet. Interesting fact is that 1st, 2nd and 3rd crossed the archipelago from extreme east (David) to extreme west (Thomas) with Bertrand in the middle. Thomas and Bertrand extended their lead to the followers which shows their skill in "boring" subplanning conditions of the trades in that region. Might also not be a coincidence they sail Manuards?
David put the balls on the table and went east. With no weather data this is very risky move that can easily end like Andrea Caracci - loosing any chance for the result after good first leg in 2005. Fortunaltely (and I use that word deliberatly) it played out and he got out with 20-30 miles lead. Maybe we shouldn't be surprised since I believe he proved time and again that his balls are made from a very special alloy :)
Special mention goes to Lucas on 509. He is the only guy in top 10 with boat from the previous generation. She is a sistership to my ex 510 that was sailed by my partner in crime Kristian Hajnšek in 05 and 07 Transat. It is good to see that you can do a solid result with a good old boat that you can purchase for a price of a new production boat.

Doldrums might reshufle cards a little bit since they are only at 11N which means there are still a lot of vicious clouds between competitors and the southern trades. They do look quite "user friendly" at the moment though:

But my bet (with hopefully no major technical problems) would be that the ranking in top 3 we see at the moment will stay to the end. Upwind and reaching 747 and 787 are fastest boats in the fleet and 754 has almost 30 miles advantage to Joerg. He (Joerg) will probably also defend his 4th since he is more experienced sailor to Antoine, but from 5th on things will surely reshuffle.

6 commentaires:

  1. Surprising to see that the best 24 h distance was sailed with 727,4 nm by Picault with the 198 Kickers - plan Magnen from 1997! This is about 13 years behind the development of the present top boats...


  2. Must be a mistake since difference to the next best is almost 40M and his route was more or less the same than of everybody else. That said even though 198 kept same hull, structure, keel, mast and almost everything else was upgraded to modern standards. She is at least as fast as 509 in light and medium conditions faster.

  3. Bonjour les experts, merci de nous faire part de votre analyse de la course ce matin, David va-t-il reprendre les milles concédés à ses poursuivants directs? Jörg qui semble continuer à l'Est pourra-t-il revenir sur la tête de course? Derrière ça revient vite, Nico est pleine balle. Quelle course!

  4. Keep in mind that in doldrums VMG is south. So current ranking and distances to the leader are decieving. They are obviously already getting southern trades that are in beginning straight from the south (we had this situation in 2005) so you have to start with tacking. Lucas and Antoine on the left will not lay the Fernando (IMHO) so they'll have to make a very costly tack back east. The later they do it the more it will cost them due to the wind shifting left.
    So apart of the compression of the first three I think currently nothing changed to the picture from few days ago.
    Just one more note: I gave a prediction that if David gets to southern trades about 40 miles behind the leader he'll still win due to the speed of his scow in reaching. We'll see if that will hold - all goes well he should win with about 50 miles advantage.

  5. Coucou les experts
    Alors vous le sentez comment ce flux de sud qu'ils ont en ce moment? Tibo le plus à l'ouest et qui insiste das ce choix n'est il pas en train de faire une bêtise? Comment David et Thomas font leur choix pour se recentrer sur la route? A quel moment?
    Quel casse tête, jpense que je serais devenue folle depuis longtemps...
    Au plaisir de vous lire!

  6. D'après GFS, le vent devrait gentiment tourner Sud Sud Est puis SE à partir du petit matin.

    Quand on tire des bords dans le Pot il faut arbitrer entre la pression qu'on a sur place, les nuages, le fait de ne pas se faire piéger à l'est où le pot est généralement plus actif, et enfin songer à sa trajectoire en sortie (Alizés parfois très Sud Sud Est avant de tourner SE puis ESE)
    Il me semble que David et Thomas se sont recallés au bon moment. La sortie n'est pas loin pour eux.

    Lucas et Antoine sont plutôt bien à mon avis. il y a semble-t-il plus de pression dans l'Ouest. Et je les sens bien par rapport au paquet. Mais gare aux coups du pot.

    Pour Thibault, c'est plus compliqué, il est embarqué très à l'ouest mais avait il le choix ? Il a encore un peu de tricot à faire pour jouer avec la pression. Ce qui compte c'est avancer. Mais sortir très très à l'Ouest vous expose au risque d'un près très serré, voire de tirer des bords pour passer Fernando.

    Et à part ça Madame la Marquise ?