23rd Mini Transat gets underway
Published on September 27th, 2021
Les Sables d’Olonne, France (September 27, 2021) – The first leg of the Mini Transat EuroChef was launched today at 15:30 hours local time in a NW’ly breeze of between 16 and 20 knots which sent the 90 competitors on the 1350nm course for Santa Cruz de La Palma in the Canary Islands.
The first 72 hours of the race are set to be fairly crucial with, in chronological order, an easing of the breeze this evening, a key turn to position correctly tonight at the edge of a ridge of high pressure to avoid becoming becalmed, the passage of a front to negotiate on tomorrow night through into September 29, and then a wind shift to hunt down to thread their way along as smoothly as possible between Cape Finisterre and the eponymous TSS (Traffic Separation System).
Pierre Le Roy (1019 – TeamWork), one of the firm favorites in the prototype category, sees the negotiation of the Bay of Biscay to be quite complicated in terms of strategy. “We’re going to have to nail the timing of our maneuvers and be quick at it. We’re clearly going to have little time to rest until we round the north-west tip of Galicia, but it’s going to be an interesting ride.
“The match is going to be intriguing and above all wide open. That’s particularly true after the latitude of Vigo, where two different scenarios are possible today. The first might enable us to link onto a run down to the Canaries at quite a lick. The second could be a little more laborious, with a great deal of uncertainty coloring play. As a result, we’ll have to be on the pace from the get-go and not dawdle on our way to Cape Finisterre.”
After a one day postponement, the 23rd edition of the Mini Transat, reserved for the Mini 6.50, the smallest offshore racing class at 21-feet, got underway on September 27, 2021.
A notable proving ground for sailors with shorthanded aspirations, it is also test platform for new boat types, with 65 competitors entering in the production division for manufactured boats while the prototype division has 25 entrants with custom designs.
Held biennially, with limited participation for safety that includes strict qualification guidelines, the 4,050 nm course is divided in two parts: Les Sables d’Olonne (France) to Santa Cruz de La Palma in the Canaries (Spain), restarting on October 29 for the finish at Saint-François in Guadeloupe.
Source: Mini Transat