battle of the bigs

At 19 hours or so into the race Gitana rounded the Fastnet Rock well clear of any other boat. As an idea of the difference in pace of the multis and monos, Skorpios, the leading mono was somewhere North West of the Scilly Isles with the Open 60, Apiva on her tail and closing in.  Check the fleet here.

In her first race, it was starting to look like the ‘fastest monohull in the world’ might struggle to uphold that tag. Once round the Rock, it may become a battle between her massive sail area and the foils on Apiva.

Further back down the fleet the battle for glory between the two Polish boats, I love Poland and Sailing Poland, both former Volvo boats with I Love Poland, a VO70 having just rounded Lands End with a clear advantage on the VOR65 which is to be expected but with the 70 projected as 1st in IRC 0 and 1st Overall compared to the 65 which is in 3rd place in class.

Of course, it is expected all that may change with the expected shutdown in breeze as teams get closer to the finish.

At just after the 24-hour mark Gitana has under 200 miles to go with Sodebo 90 miles in her wake and 5kts slower. A bit confusing as the tracker shows Charles & Franck doing 33kts towards the finish while the team list is showing RTD against them.

I Love Poland is still in the box seat for IRC overall although I do suspect some errors with the tracker to Handicap algorithm as Magic Wind which has yet to clear Weymouth and Portland is currently showing as 1st in IRC 1. Mark you stranger things can happen.

AS it stands it looks like Caudrellier and Cammas and their crew will be showered and well into the second round of drinks well before 90% of the fleet have cleared the UK coast on the way to The Rock and with the wind forecast to shut down in the next 24-48 hours it could be a long  cold race from just off Ireland to France on the way back. – SS