Ronstan

Mini Transat – The Northerners

Published on November 29th, 2013

(November 29, 2013) – A nasty headache! The stormy depression that is plaguing the race area is expected to give those soloists without a good strategy a major migrain. While Giancarlo Pedote (Prysmian) and Benoît Marie (benoitmarie.com) seem to have escaped at more than 10 knots in the 20.00 rankings, it is much harder for their pursuers. The gap is widening, with the exception of the competitors to the north. In contrast, at the back of the pack some are pinning their hopes on a southerly route.

Without doubt, this stormy depression is creating the mess. In the leading series boats, from Aymeric Belloir (Tout le Monde chante contre le Cancer) to Jean-Baptiste Lemaire (L’Ouvre du Marin Breton) have been slowdown once again. Only those who chose the northern option are doing well. In the prototypes Julien Pulvé (MEXT – ICA) is making more than 11 knots, while Louis Segre (Roll my Chicken) is three 3 knots slower. The could be the big opportunity for Nicolas Boidevezi (Nature Addicts), Michele Zambelli (Fontanot) and Alan Roura (Navman) who are 50 miles farther north, but holding their speed. There may be places to gained.

In the series boats, Renaud Mary (ww.runo.fr) reported more than 8 knots boat speed and could find that his choice of a northern route pays dividends, since he is just 40 miles from sixth place, currently held by Eric Cochet (Abers & Co). Other soloists could also pull the chestnuts out of the fire, for example François Lamy (Guadeloupe Espace Océan) and Pip Hare (The Potting Shed).

But what pays for one does not necessarily pay for the others. In the next group are committed supporters of a southern route who are currently making fast progress, including Thomas Guichard (Carrefour Bretagne), Raphaela Le Gouvello (Respectocean.com) and Jonas Gerkens (Netwerk 2). This is their opportunity to catch up with the leading group. Behind them boats are hitting the buffers. Ludovic Méchin (Paris Texas) and Pilar Pasanau (Peter Punk) are close to the eye of the depression. The stormy sky is beautiful, flamboyant cloudy, but the wind is conspicuously absent. Of the trade winds, we can only pray that the Azores anticyclone and be reborn from its ashes.

Ranking (series boats) at 20.00 (GMT +1)
1. Aymeric Belloir (810 – Tout le Monde chante contre le Cancer) with 942.4 nm to finish
2. Justine Mettraux (824 – TeamWork) + 124.2 nm
3. Simon Koster (819 – Go 4 it) + 207.2 nm
4. Jean-Bapptiste Lemaire (607 – Ouvre du Marin Breton) + 343.7 n nm
5. Tanguy Le Turquais (599 – Terréal Rêve d’enfance) + 388.9 nm

Ranking (prototypes) at 20.00 (GMT +1)
1. Giancarlo Pedote (747 – Prysmian) with 685.6 nm to finish
2. Benoit Marie (667 – benoitmarie.com) + 27.8 nm
3. Rémi Fermin (741 – Boréal) + 152.2 nm
4. Bruno Garcia (240 - Sampaquita) + 176.7 nm
5. Bertrand Delesne (754 – TeamWork Proto) + 201.5 nm

The full rankings can be found online here.

Background: The biennial Mini Transat is a transatlantic race for solo Mini 6.5m competitors. The race has two legs: 1257 miles from France to Canary Islands, and 2764 miles from Canary Islands to Guadeloupe. Demand is high to compete. The race is limited to 84 racers, and each entrant must fulfill qualifying requirements. The race has a production division and a prototype division.

The start from Douarnenez was originally planned for October 13, but was postponed due to severe weather conditions on the race course. A weather window allowed for the start of the first leg of the Mini Transat 2013 on October 29, but worsening weather conditions forced the cancellation of this leg and the Mini Transat fleet found shelter in the ports on the north coast of Spain.

Seventy-three competitors restarted in Sada, Spain on November 13, with the race reduced to one 3700 mile leg direct to Pointe-à-Pitre, with a gate at the Canary Islands for safety.

Race website: http://www.minitransat.fr/

Source: Event media

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