• Riding Over The Nasty Low

    After ten days at sea on "Brest Atlantiques", the race was completely revived off Rio, between the stopover of the trimaran MACIF, the turn-around dictated by the prudence of Sodebo Ultim 3, and sailors who all keep the step on the brake so as not to expose their trimarans too much to a choppy sea. The goal of the fleet, led Friday by Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, is to make the round back before recovering within two days conditions more manageable.

    The second weekly vacation of "Brest Atlantiques", organized this Friday from the House of Brittany, at the foot of the Montparnasse tower, said a lot about the difficult conditions encountered since Thursday afternoon by the four trimarans of the Ultim Class 32 / 23. If François Gabart, well stuck in the chair of his trimaran MACIF, had the smile and the cheerful voice while evoking a "shaker" to describe what he was living in a sea formed face, Franck Cammas (Maxi Edmond de Rothschild) , Thomas Coville (Sodebo Ultim 3) and Yves Le Blevec (Actual Leader) had more tired voices and / or more drawn features, the last two ending even some agonizing seconds during the conversation, waiting for their boat to fall back. a wave higher than the others.

    "These are the worst conditions since the start and not far from the worst I have encountered in multihull, said Yves Le Blevec, who has yet seen others. At each wave, we have the impression that the boat is going to be demolished, it's really not funny. We have about thirty knots of wind, but what is annoying is that we have the waves in front and the sea is completely disordered, we are shaken, we are obliged to stand permanently. " Same story with Franck Cammas: " We currently have 25-28 knots of wind and a sea face, it is not very comfortable, it moves a lot, it is hard to stand up. "Remains that the Aixois welcomes that after the forced stop midweek in Salvador de Bahia for the repair of the drift, Maxi Edmond de Rothschild is again in charge of the race: "We did not expect to take the lead now, it is also related to the circumstances of our comrades, but it's rather nice, it's a new start for the race. "

    A new start due to the technical stop of the MACIF trimaran in Rio (replacement of central hull saffron) and the U-turn made Thursday by Sodebo Ultim 3, that Thomas Coville took the time to explain: "When we arrived in Rio, we had no choice but to leave on that southern road that was trying to get under the big depression that we are going around. After a nap, Jean-Luc (Nélias) said: "Thomas, we're not going as fast as expected, the depression catches up with us and we're going to be stuck upwind in 45-50 knots. "So it's death in the soul that we decided to tack. For the morale, it was not terrible, because we broke down and finally lost the few hundred miles we had built. I was really disillusioned, because if we managed to pass under this depression, we doubled the bet and we ended up with a very comfortable lead, we changed system before the others. It's hard to accept losing so much in advance. "

    Remains that the road to Cape Town is still long and that the future forecasts promise a possible general regrouping on the other side of the Atlantic, Cape Town, as François Gabart explained, second at 16h to 47 miles duo Franck Cammas / Charles Caudrelier: "We end up crossing in uncomplicated conditions, first facing the sea and upwind for almost two thirds of the way to Gough Island, then to the anticyclone where there will be very little wind, we will not go very fast. It's a shame, because I imagined rather this course Rio-Cape Full ball on the flat sea, I dreamed about it these last months. Unfortunately, it will not be for this time, it will return. " Too much wind first, not enough then, this second stretch will probably not be the best memory of "Brest Atlantiques" for the eight sailors and the four media men ...

    "The night falls on this ninth day of the race, the atmosphere slightly veiled by the spray shows in our starboard bow shapes, the earth, small mountains. Jean Luc confirms to me immediately that these are the breads of sugars, symbol of our first point of passage, Rio."

    "For the first time since our departure, the horizon is illuminated, gilded golden color, clouds yellowed by the lights of the city detour the reliefs that face us. We approach, zigzagging through tankers and unenlightened sinners, there are people in the village. The sensation of arriving in a place like this, after days of seas, drowned in the blue of the ocean, can seem quite brutal and almost unreal. Before going around our course mark, at the closest of the coast, we can distinguish the people near the beach of Ipanema, feel this human warmth, this agitation that reigns a few meters from us. No time for tourism, you have to gybe to leave immediately to the open sea, leaving these atmospheres and lights in our wake. Thank you Rio for this too short evening in your company."

    Martin Keruzoré / Mediaman aboard Sodebo Ultim 3


    At the Cabo Frio point, before turning towards Rio, there was a front to pass ... In short, an unstable weather change, in a sea under construction, badly placed.

    It started in the day by the wind, taped without wind, with big clouds at the bottom who were fleeing us ... All sails out, once night fell; - without moon - the wind is up. They sifted almost all their sails and configurations, and it took them all night!

    It is in this kind of moment that I realize that they make a great duo: bravo guys.

    And this afternoon, finally we arrive in Rio! It was our main goal for 10 days. Since the time we talk about it, we made films: a nice transfer in front of the beach of Copacabana? Maybe the silhouette of Corcovado? a string string on the horizon? the smell of monoi? Samba? a little something Do Brazil what! I saw myself already immortalize the scene with a small blow of drone ... You speak!

    Fog to cut with the knife, old mutant rain, icy cold in wax ... visibility 100m maximum by certain moments ... so much that one had to slacken the sail of before, so it was hot: one saw NOTHING! We thought we saw 3 buildings, the smell of trash, 2-3 cans of coca floating in brown water ... and basta!

    It is perhaps better that we did not land, we would surely have fallen on a big slack mode: And bee, the Brest, the Breton, you brought the rain!?! Grrr, me it a little sapped morale!
    But Yves and Alex, they do not care, it must be said that the Cagarras Islands are super pretty and in the mist, it had a mystical side.
    In short, next mark at 3260 miles! There we prepare for a minimum of 4 days in the breeze, on the carbon chopper! Wow!

    Ronan Gladu / Mediaman aboard Actual Leader

    This article was originally published in forum thread: 2019 Brest Atlantiques Blasts Off started by Photoboy View original post