Spindrift 2: Last Day in the Pacific
Published on December 21st, 2015
(December 21, 2015; Day 30) – From 470 miles down to nearly the same up on the current record in just two days, it has been a significant turnaround for the 40m maxi-trimaran Spindrift 2 as they prepare to leave the Pacific.
At the southerly latitudes, there is almost no night, perhaps dark for an hour at most. It makes life a bit easier for the helmsmen who are benefiting from improved visibility, enabling them to anticipate the movement of the trimaran in seas that are big but very disorderly. So, there were some rough conditions as the wind approached 35 knots, gusting to 40 for much of the day, all capped by polar temperatures. One watch even received a few flurries of snow. It is the season.
The approach to Cape Horn is looking complex. Spindrift 2 and its crew are going to have to cross a front, then overtake it. There are numerous manoeuvres coming and quite slow progress, before enjoying one last surf towards the famous rock, which marks the end of the Southern Ocean, the Pacific Ocean and the return into the Atlantic.
Their approach to Cape Horn is expected tomorrow some time before noon. It’s difficult to predict the exact time because of the unstable conditions, but current forecasts predict a half-day lead over Banque Populaire V.
As of 2100 UTC
Distance to finish: 7341.0 nm
Distance for 24 hours: 641.1 nm
Distance ahead of record: 467.55 nm
Source: Spindrift 2
Background: Spindrift 2 has entered to claim the Jules Verne Trophy, a prize for the fastest circumnavigation of the world by any type of yacht with no restrictions on the size of the crew, starting and finishing between the Le Créac’h Lighthouse off the tip of Brittany and the Lizard Point in Cornwall.
Yann Guichard (FRA), skippering the 40 VPLP-designed trimaran, crossed the start line on November 22 at 04:01:58 GMT, and his 14-man team must return by 17:43:51 UTC on January 6, 2016 to beat the current record set January 2012 by Loïck Peyron and his crew on Banque Populaire 5 of 45 days, 13 hours, 42 minutes and 53 seconds.
Spindrift 2 was originally launched in 2008 as Banque Populaire 5.
MORE: Also starting on November 22 (at 02:02:22 GMT) for an attempt at the Jules Verne Trophy was Francis Joyon (FRA), skippering the 31.5m VPLP-designed trimaran IDEC SPORT. The 6-person team must return by 15:44:15 GMT on January 6, 2016 to beat the record. Here’s a tracker showing both teams: http://volodiaja.net/Tracking/
SPINDRIFT 2 CREW:
Yann Guichard, skipper
Dona Bertarelli, helmsman-trimmer
Sébastien Audigane, helmsman-trimmer
Antoine Carraz, helmsman-trimmer
Thierry Duprey du Vorsent, helmsman-trimmer
Christophe Espagnon, helmsman-bowman
Jacques Guichard, helmsman-trimmer
Erwan Israël, navigator
Loïc Le Mignon, helmsman-trimmer
Sébastien Marsset, bowman
François Morvan, helmsman-trimmer
Xavier Revil, helmsman-trimmer
Yann Riou, media reporter
Thomas Rouxel, helmsman-bowman
Jean-Yves Bernot, onshore router