In our book, tropical storms are things that develop somewhere in the Atlantic, in late summer/autumn, and may, or may not become, hurricanes that hit Caribbean islands and the USA. Seems we aren’t altogether right, because Meteo France insists that a tropical storm, with hurricane force gusts, is about to hit the Vendee sailors in the Cape Horn area.
Brian Thompson, who has rounded the Horn said “I think it might be better for Dee and Arnaud. The centre of the low looks like it will go right over the top of them. So, I think they would go from light airs to when they exit from Staten Island to heavy airs downwind and I will be dealing with the heavy airs upwind, because I am not in the centre of the low. I’ll get the northerlies before the low and then the strong down wind. As long as the low tracks as it is supposed to, pretty much over Cape Horn, it could actually be reasonably safe for them. I am focused on getting as prepared as possible and trying to avoid the worst of the conditions.”
Dee Caffari, who is almost there, seemed to agree, saying “The centre of the low will pass over and so the possibility of trying to outrun it has gone because of the light winds in the centre of the low, so we will actually experience the west side with SW’lies. So, if I can go slow, it will be six or nine hours of nasty winds, but not the worst winds, because the worst winds are in the northern section, and then once I am happy and then I can get going again as much as I can with what is left of my mainsail.” Pic from Brian Thompson.
Oh and can we give a shout out to the lone yank Rich Wilson? Not a front runner, but unlike a whole bunch of others, he’s still at it. A few more drop outs and you never know!