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Thread: 2019 Brest Atlantiques Blasts Off

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    2019 Brest Atlantiques Blasts Off

    Posted on 05.11.2019


    The four trimarans of the Ultim 32/23 class took Tuesday, November 5 at 11:00 the departure of "Brest Atlantiques", a new double race of 14 000 miles that will take them non-stop to Rio then Cape Town, before a return to Brest. After five hours of racing at 30 knots average, Trimaran Macif (François Gabart / Gwénolé Gahinet) and Maxi Edmond de Rothschild (Franck Cammas / Charles Caudrelier) occupied the head of the fleet.

    White and steaming sea, average winds of 28/30 knots, with gusts a little below 40, clear sky and beautiful autumn light, all conditions were met this Tuesday at 11:00 at the foot of the Chaussée de Sein to offer "Brest Atlantiques" a grandiose start, at the height of the gigantic trimarans of the Ultim 32/23 class. The day before, given the strong weather announced, the eight sailors had announced their intention to "do no nonsense" , to use the expression of Charles Caudrelier (Maxi Edmond de Rothschild), Yves Le Blevec (Actual Leader) evoking the "wise balance between marine and competition ". They kept their word, all darting near the western Sein, starboard tack under full sail (reduced) and sails before rolled.

    This did not prevent them from crossing the line of 2.5 miles launched at nearly 30 knots, proof of the power of these trimarans 32 meters out of 23, before extending the stride an hour later, once the J3 (small sail from before) unrolled. "We're leaving for a month at sea, it's useless to break everything now, but at the same time, we must not remain stopped, because we all want to go as fast as possible, it's the eternal dilemma of offshore racing " , confided three hours earlier, when leaving the quay Malbert, François Gabart (Trimaran Macif), the fight with Maxi Edmond de Rothschild at the head of the fleet after four hours of sea swallowed 30 knots of average.


    The four trimarans are expected to finish between 23h and midnight with the Bay of Biscay so feared to then afford a "fabulous slip to Brazil," to use the expression of Thomas Coville (Sodebo Ultim 3) when leaving Brest. "Cape Finisterre will already be a sacred step, it's crazy to say we'll be in Spain tonight. After, it will be a little more relaxing and we will be able to really get into the performance, it will be great, " said his side Gwénolé Gahinet, Franck Cammas adding, " Highly tonight! We will try to escape unscathed at Cape Finisterre, we can then attack more. "

    The word of the race director, Jacques Caraës: "The sea was delicate at the Chaussée de Sein, the four boats are all gone under mainsail alone. The trimaran Macif was the most northerly in cape at the very beginning of the race, but after an hour, he unrolled his J3 and recalled to Maxi Edmond de Rothschild who, as he has only two laughs ( against three for the other three boats), was a little more clothed. These conditions of departure were consistent with the briefing of the day before, committed and manly, but in 12 hours, the first will be at Cape Finisterre. They will have to rig one or two gybes before spinning full south, the routes continuing to provide a passage from the equator in 4 days and a half for the fastest. "

    Patricia Brochard (president of the Ultim Class 32/23): "These days of departure are always very moving, there is both tension and a form of liberation, it is quite paradoxical. We know that they will have twelve hours hard enough to start with a sea formed and wind, it adds a little to the emotion. So there is a little heartache, but also the pleasure of seeing them go do what they dream, it is also a great joy to have these four boats in confrontation on this first race that we really wanted, the To succeed in this event, which is a great first in such a short time, is a great satisfaction. "

    François Cuillandre, Mayor of Brest and President of Brest Métropole: "Brest was so far rather a port of records, we wanted for some time to reconnect with the race offshore, so it is a great pleasure and a great pride for Brest to see Brest Atlantiques start today. The village here was extraordinary, it was extremely busy despite the rainy weather, with many people coming to see these beautiful, the most beautiful and fastest boats in the world, led by extraordinary sailors, I think there will be still many people arriving in about thirty days. "

    Photos: Yvan Zedda / Brest Atlantiques

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    Flight Over 30 Knots Off Gibraltar

    After 30 hours of racing, the four trimarans engaged on Brest Atlantiques already evolve off Gibraltar, mostly lining averages around 30 knots and peaks beyond 40. On the program of the second night, a jibe at wedge between the Azores and Madeira before a schuss towards the equator.


    They do not hang out on the way! Carefully departed Tuesday in a very rough sea of ​​Iroise, the four trimarans engaged on "Brest Atlantiques" gradually lengthened the stride at the same time as they released laughs in their mainsail and unfolded the veils of before, enjoying favorable wind angles (north-west) and a gradually flattened sea, conducive to very high speed. The videos of the edge sent by media men well shaken by this introduction more than tonic are quite impressive, between incessant whistles, spray of foam and spikes beyond 40 knots!

    And if the first hours were rather cautious, to the point that two of the four boats, the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild (Franck Cammas / Charles Caudrelier) and Actual Leader (Yves Le Blevec / Alex Pella), have chosen a road more slaughtered in the Bay of Biscay and a passage east of the DST (traffic separation zone) of Cape Finisterre, they are now all in regatta mode, especially at the head of the fleet where the Trimaran Macif (François Gabart / Gwénolé Gahinet) and the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild did not leave the afternoon of Wednesday, with almost the same distance traveled and a very close average (28-29 knots).

    Behind, while they are all off Gibraltar (908 miles traveled in total by the Trimaran Macif in the ranking of 16h), Sodebo Ultim 3 (Thomas Coville / Jean-Luc Nélias) does not drop ground, pointed 54 miles of the leader, while Actor Leader, slowed at the passage of Cape Finisterre in a small area of ​​soft, is pointed to 162 miles. "We started flying since last night, there, we slide at 40 knots, we are in the lead, it's cool. We managed to break nothing in the Bay of Biscay, to find the right compromise between speed and preservation of the boat, " welcomed Wednesday in the day François Gabart in a video sent by his media man Jérémie Eloy.

    The continuation of the program? Routing expert Christian Dumard, who works with the race management, explains: "They are finally getting around the Azores anticyclone from the south in a smooth sea, which is what we call a Seagull wing, then, they will jibe, probably in the night, between Madeira and the Azores, and make full south road to Rio. " Where the first are expected in about 7 days at sea ...

    The word of the race management (Jacques Caraës): "This morning, the wind was still rather uneven in strength and direction, we saw that Leader Leader had fallen into a big soft, but since, it's enough, even very fast, they make a course at 220, about 30 knots average. We did not receive any calls, proof that the boats and the guys are doing well. The next challenge for them is triggering the jibe before heading south. On board, even if the sea is better ranked than last night, it must shake, they are often not far from 40 knots, the media man must hang in these conditions. And there is probably a lot of fatigue, because they probably did not sleep a lot last night and it's hard to sleep when it shakes like that. "

    Jérémie Eloy / Mediaman abord de Trimaran MACIF

    Brest, the gully, the swell, the whistling wind, the sun ... We juggle between the waves, barely a glance at the committee boat, we've already passed the line. In all this noise, François shouts, it's good, good start. And we rush into the south. A dazzling descent awaits us, finally waiting for me especially, because my two friends know her well, but not me.

    They are reassuring François and Gweno, strong in their boots, their eyes focused on these pictures full of numbers ... I do not understand half, but I'm pretending; I look at them too, it reassures me. <br />
    It's banging, it's screaming, the MACIF trimaran is accelerating, a long and vertiginous descent.
    We are beyond 40 knots, it's exhilarating, like riders on their mounts, hair in the wind, smiling ...
    We quickly recognize the end of the descent, the boat is at full speed, it starts to tremble everywhere, the foils vibrate, 45, 46 ... And it falls to better start again.

    I'm filming, that's why I'm here, I spread out as much as I can, where I can, to be stable, to find an angle ... I go down, my office is waiting for me, the service com too.
    I prepare everything thoroughly, when I settle, I miss a cable, he had to slip there, or there, or there ...
    Every gesture becomes superhuman, a little like a summit; every gesture counts, so I return the poufs, and after 10 minutes, I find it and I sweat. I flew 12 times in the hull, and every 3 minutes, I lay down to regain strength.

    My editing sent, I went to see my two friends, always straight in their boots, looking towards the horizon. Everything was fine ...
    I returned pictures in the night, then I slept well. This morning the light was beautiful, I took advantage, then dishes, preparing the meal ... It did not look too bad, at the same time miss a freeze-dried meal ...

    Martin Keruzoré / Mediaman à bord de Sodebo Ultim 3:
    It's almost 24 hours since we left the port of Brest, it is almost 24 hours that we are moving in hostile terrain, through a real mogul field and we are propelled by a wind oscillating between 30 and 40 knots

    The warm up is tough, Thomas and Jean-Luc have not left the waxed and helmets from the start, listening plays in hand, the boat goes south flirting with the 44 knots. On board, life is difficult to organize, the movements in the cockpit are perilous and laborious, the smallest gesture of everyday life here takes three times longer to be executed. Eat in balance or slump on the floor, each his technique. As night falls, it feels more like an amusement park ride than an Ultim trimaran. The strong swell coming from our starboard cross makes the boat's movements unpredictable. It smokes and it knocks, the spray constantly sweeps the cell of life and the waves come to play with the floats.

    In a few hours conditions should be more manageable, enough to allow us to eat our first hot meal for 24 hours. At the time when I close this little message, Jean-Luc comes out of his nap and explains to me that it is impossible to sleep in these conditions when the boat plays leapfrog.

    Yann Riou / Mediaman aboard Maxi Edmond de Rothschild:

    Last night we made the choice to go inside the Finisterre DST. Conservative choice that allowed us to stay on course in the Bay of Biscay. We have therefore shaved the Galician coast! We saw lighthouses, boats and we even had the right to a little 4G. To accompany all that, I made some slices of local ham. It was also at this time that the sea and the wind really calmed down, and that we could eat more normally. The night was still tonic with some maneuvers, high averages and visibility not always on top This morning at the change of quarter, Franck and Charles showed some satisfaction to be at the latitude of Lisbon - or almost. For Franck, "after a cautious start to the race in extreme conditions, we gradually enter a regatta mode!

    Ronan Gladu/ Mediaman aboard ACTUAL LEADER:

    The departure of Brest early in the morning was rather existing, pleasant: Say goodbye at home, friends, family, under applause. But especially surrounded by the Ulteam Actual-Leader As usual, They were all cleats, super pros, in a good mood!

    In the shelter of the harbor, surrounded by all these sailors, semi-rigid at sunrise, that happiness!

    And there, clearly, it was scary for me, accustomed to contemplate this landscape of desolation from the ground, to look for a surf spot in the shelter ... I was clearly out of my comfort zone! It's even more impressive to see the other Ultims roam like toys in the middle of the raging sea.

    Fortunately, Yves & Alex looked relaxed: the white seas and the massive swell offshore, they know!

    Just before the start line, come our last friends of the earth, a helicopter ballet ... that give the scale back to the elements ... especially when some disappear behind the waves: scary !!

    I did not see the military boat committee boat, nor the Western buoy of Sein, which materialized the starting line but I was clinging to my camera.

    Meanwhile, Alex was doing good and cries of happiness at the thought of finally being gone and Yves was well focused at the bar, smiling!

    I first took advantage of this euphoria to make pictures as best as I could, but I was quickly stressed by the surfs of the boat, 32m long ... and especially the top of the ridge waves that went off in big foam : For surfers, it happens when the saturated waves, are too big for the type of spot / background.

    And then we passed the continental shelf ... there it became the roller coaster: 25 knots at the top of the ridge, 38 knots at the bottom of the descent !! Always with 2 reefs in the mainsail, only!

    The moment for me to do an "end-to-end" mini video editing for TV ... About TV, it's been a week that I repeat at each ITV that I never had seasickness.
    You speak ! I did not vomit, but I bad, serious: Can not work on the computer at the bottom of the hold. On the bridge, it's the apocalypse. So I ended up in PLS in my bunk, listening to my guts make good every surf.

    Fortunately, it's going fast, very quickly an Ultim! In 10 hours we were at Cape Finisterre and now, 24 hours later, we are already in Portugal! The sea has calmed down, but suddenly Yves Alex accelerate more and more ... now it's 33nds in the climbs, 40nds downhill! "

    Ronus Jack Kerouac of the sea (haha, it is to take and leave!

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    If Actual completes the race without inverting, he should qualify as winning!

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    Cape Verde To Port For Brest Atlantiques Fleet

    The regatta is in full swing at "Brest Atlantiques" on Friday with a speed race towards the equator that is currently smiling for Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, leader of the fleet . On Friday evening's program, the management of the Cape Verde Islands' wind, before the big question of the week: where to cross the Doldrums?

    The clear voices, the not-too-withdrawn features, the good-natured morale, the four skippers joined this Friday at the weekly Brest Atlantic session were pleased to enjoy summer conditions after the muscular start of the Bay of Biscay. "I thought that the sun and the blue sky did not exist, if, yes, I reassure you, there are corners of the planet where it is mega beautiful. By cons, from time to time, and it has bothered us all night and for 24 hours, there are large grains that sometimes have the bad idea of ​​"eat up" the wind, which is not very good for speed, " summarized Thomas Coville on Sodebo Ultim 3, third at 16h.

    Joined this Friday during the weekly vacation of Brest Atlantiques, Franck Cammas told the first three days of sea on the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild.

    The conditions of the day. "We found wind for three hours, which was not the case before, we had a long period of light weather. These are summer conditions, the weather is nice, the sea is flat, we do not have much wind, 15 knots, but it makes it possible to advance quite a bit. I burned my knee with boiling water, it's not very beautiful to see, but everything is fine. "

    The start of the race. "We started a reef in 6 meters of hollow, the goal was that the first hours go well for the boat, it began to weaken after five hours, the sea has improved towards the approach of Spanish coasts. The Maxi Edmond de Rothschild behaved quite a lot, we managed to make correct averages in these seas, around 30 knots, almost beyond what we imagined, it ended well. We chose to go inside the DST at Cape Finisterre for reasons of ease compared to the sea which was more correct. "

    The pace to find. "We began to jibe at the level of Madeira. The options were to make a single jibe by getting closer to the center of the anticyclone and by doing a few hours across the road or to exploit a little better in the east to avoid soft spots, we chose the second solution. We made a first jibe around midnight in the night from Wednesday to Thursday, with a few hours when we were really well and a great angle of exit, then, it deteriorated with very changeable winds, adonnantes and refusals of 30 or 40 degrees that could not be exploited, because a jibe is about 15-20 minutes, and given the conditions, the wind rotations had already passed. "

    The regatta with the Macif Trimaran. "It's not just Macif. 200 or 300 miles on these boats that go to 30 knots, it can be reduced very quickly. In time, there is not much difference, we saw last night that between two rankings, there are differences of almost 10 knots of speed, the gaps are made and fall apart very quickly. After, we imagined that it was going to be like this, Macif, the boat goes fast all the time, they know him perfectly, master this kind of navigation around the world, we are very happy to meet with them already, so be ahead, so much better, but it's only the beginning of the race. Anyway, it's nice to have a beautiful regatta on a global scale, we see that the oceans are shrinking, it's a beautiful game of chess in the Atlantic. "

    The strategy to come. "There is already the management of Cape Verde with a little wind, then, the Doldrums. I have the impression that it is quite clear when you enter it, but it is reformed before leaving it. There is a very small chance that the person who comes first will be better than his pursuers, so we will try to return at least at the same time as Macif.

    A Sodebo Ultim 3 chasing the top duo composed of Maxi Edmond de Rothschild and Trimaran MACIF, with advantage this Friday to the first who has taken advantage of a shift to the east to descend faster than his rival. Not enough, however, to excite a Franck Cammas still satisfied with the start of the tandem race he trains with Charles Caudrelier: "We know that Macif goes fast all the time, they know the boat perfectly, and master this kind of navigation around the world, we are already very happy to play with him, so much the better if we are ahead. But that's only the beginning of the race. In any case, it's a beautiful game of chess in the Atlantic. "


    On the MACIF Trimaran, second in the standings from 16h to 65 miles behind the leader, François Gabart shows himself fair play: "The Maxi Edmond de Rothschild was very east, they managed to win in the west quite easily, because that the wind was stronger in the east last night compared to the forecast, they took advantage of it. " The winner of the 2012 Vendée Globe, like its competitors, now has his eyes on Cape Verde, with the wind shadow of the islands to manage, then on the black-Pot, which according Franck Cammas could smile at first arrived: "I have the impression that the Doldrums are quite clear when we get in, but that it reformes before leaving. There is a very small chance that the one who gets in first is better than his pursuers. "

    At the back of the fleet, Yves Le Blevec and Alex Pella (Actual Leader), flashed more than 30 knots in the morning of Friday, continue to play the hunters, on the lookout: "Sometimes conditions allow boats front to go fast enough, at other times, like this morning, we can fill our gap a little bit. In any case, we drop anything, the pace is very good on board Actual L eader, we are delighted to be where we are with a boat in exactly the same condition as departure. The race is beautiful for us, we will make sure that the story continues to be beautiful. "

    Photo: Yann Riou / PolaRyse / Gitana SA
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    Rudder Repair For Macif And Gitana

    First break for Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, but a stop is scheduled
    After five days of racing on the Brest Atlantiques course, the Doldrums delivered a favourable verdict for Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, the team was hardly slowed down compared to its rivals. Just after crossing the equator this Sunday at 13.45 GMT, Franck Cammas and Charles Caudrelier had a 163 mile lead over their immediate competitor, trimaran MACIF. However, the two co-skippers will have to make a technical stopover in Salvador de Bahia for repairs to the daggerboard.


    The saying often used in offshore racing that the rich are getting richer was reflected in the first of the two crossings of the Doldrums on the Brest Atlantiques. On Saturday morning, when analysing the positioning of this inter-tropical zone, where the trade winds from the northern and southern hemispheres converge, causing hot air to rise and large cloud masses to generate either violent squalls or periods of calm, Franck Cammas believed that the first to arrive would have the best chance of getting out quickest.

    The skipper of the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild was right: the Guillaume Verdier designed trimaran, which entered the Doldrums on Saturday afternoon, will only have spent around fifteen hours there, without having completely stopped, except on Sunday morning just as they seemed to be out of the woods. "We thought we'd get out earlier, but the bad weather caught us before we left and we took a few hours off! Now that seems comical.... " said Franck Cammas in the morning.

    Behind them, their competitors will have been slowed down further, as in turn, the trimaran MACIF (François Gabart/Gwénolé Gahinet), hampered since Saturday due by damage to the central hull rudder, Sodebo Ultim 3 (Thomas Coville/Jean-Luc Nélias) and Actual Leader (Yves Le Blevec/Alex Pella) have had their successive stops, difficult for sailors who specialise in high speed racing.

    In a video sent by Martin Keruzoré, media man aboard Sodebo Ultim 3, which perfectly sums up the conditions in the Doldrums being something between brutal accelerations in the squalls and flapping sails in the "calm", Thomas Coville explained on Sunday morning: "We didn't leave at all, the Doldrums reformed ahead of us. It didn't take much for us to experience the same thing as those in front. It's a lot of effort for a lot of frustration.”

    As a result of this increase in speed, the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, who crossed the equator on Sunday at 13.45 GMT after 5 days 3 hours and 45 minutes at sea, at 4pm had a 163 mile lead over the trimaran MACIF (compared to 44 miles, 24 hours earlier), 221 miles ahead of Sodebo Ultim 3 (compared to 164 miles) and 376 miles ahead of Actual Leader (compared to 371 miles).

    The leaderboard will undoubtedly change in the coming days, with the two leading boats planning a pit stop for repairs. While MACIF have yet to announce an update on the location of the stopover to repair the central rudder, Gitana Team announced this Sunday afternoon that they would make a pit-stop in Salvador de Bahia for repairs to the trimaran's daggerboad. "We're going to have to stop in Bahia for a few hours," Franck Cammas confirmed in a statement sent by his team. “We had a problem with our daggerboard before passing the Cape Verde Islands and there are things to fix. We don't know exactly what happened, a collision probably, but visually, the bottom of the daggerboard is damaged, so the boat is not in optimal sailing mode. With Cyril Dardashti, the team and our navigator Marcel Van Triest, we weighed up the pros and cons: the cost to us in terms of miles, the distance still to cover as we have only completed a quarter of the course, the weather to come and of course safety. After looking at all this, we think that the best compromise is to stop and to then continue racing with the boat at its full potential.”

    With the help of the Transat Jacques Vabre organisation and those in charge of the Salvador de Bahia Marina, a decision was reached for the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild to dock for a few hours in the Bay of All Saints in order to repair its daggerboard.


    Come on, that's good because it's you, I take the time to write you some short stories, live from the famous doldrums.
    I had heard all sorts of stories about the inter-tropical zone, this no-man's between the North and South Atlantic trade winds ... But I did not expect it to be so scary, hard and endless, especially in Ultim!

    As I write these lines, it's dark again. The swell of the southern trade winds returns to that of the grains, which creates an abominable sea. The boat hits hard and all the carbon reacts like a spring that ends in our bodies, in resonance. It's really not pleasant, and especially scary! We feel that the boat and the equipment are mortifying. But difficult to slow down the boat under the beans. The last one I saw on deck, before sunset, the anemometer showed 42 knots of wind. The sea was white, the sky black: scary

    But what scared me the most was to approach the first grains last night, at night, to see the stress rise in the eyes of Yves and Alex, not knowing absolutely what sauce we were going to be eaten in the dark night all sails out. The boat is so powerful, the wind comes so fast ... I get goose bumps just to rethink! But Yves and Alex manage the crisis like pros, luckily for me! But it remains something, in the complete darkness, to feel the torrential rain come down at once, the boat to race in overspeed ... While one shot down, the other shocks, in the monstrous crash of winches, whistling foils and wind ... Fortunately I have my camera to film the action, it relaxes me a little in those moments

    By day it's not so much more reassuring, but the same scene is repeated for 24 hours: there is between 5 and 10 knots of wind, we are taped ... in a few minutes a black mushroom is created next to and above we, and suddenly, it's the sky that falls on our head. A torrent of rain and wind is pouring on us (between 35 and 40 knots of wind on average, direction unknown!) Yves and Alex manage the monster, often the leeward flight, with the boat which, too, howls 'at 40nds ... it lasts more or less long .... Calm flat, and paf, it goes again!
    We can not stand it any longer, we are soaked to the skin, no one has slept since last night (or then 5 minutes in wax on the deck, and again ...). I hope that my warriors, to whom I owe life every minute, will still hold out one more night! The crazy thing is that they continue to make jokes and smile, even with stress and fatigue! Sorry for the pictures of the day, I will send them to the exit, if we go out one day: inch' Halla!

    Ronan Gladu


    Damage to trimaran MACIF as they enter the Doldrums
    Despite a smooth race for the Ultim 32/23 class trimarans since the start of Brest Atlantiques, in the early hours of this morning, trimaran MACIF hit an unidentified floating object (UFO) which damaged the central rudder and could mean that François Gabart and Gwénolé Gahinet have to make a technical stopover. The damage however, has not hindered their progress as they continue to race into the Doldrums with Maxi Edmond de Rothschild.

    In the battle of the Brest Atlantiques leaders, François Gabart and Gwénolé Gahinet on board MACIF, suffered damage to the central rudder after hitting a UFO on Friday night: "This Saturday 9th November at 1h30 the crew of the trimaran MACIF noticed the failure of the central rudder following the impact with a UFO while sailing off the Cape Verde Islands. The skipper, François Gabart, quickly contacted his shore team to report the damage, indicating that there was no water ingress on board and that the boat remained perfectly manoeuvrable, as shown by the speeds posted this morning," said the MACIF press release.

    Indeed at 4pm, the VPLP designed trimaran showed an average of 35.3 knots over 4 hours, still hot on the heels of the leader, Maxi Edmond de Rothschild (Franck Cammas/Charles Caudrelier)! "In flight mode, they shouldn't be too bothered by this damage, because the boat relies on both float rudders, it risks being more handicapped when the wind drops along the Brazilian coast," said Jacques Caraës, race director of Brest Atlantiques, who was kept up to date with the situation by the skippers and their team last night.

    The team are preparing themselves as François Gabart and Gwénolé Gahinet are considering a technical stopover, authorised by the race officials: "A solution is still yet to be reached regarding the boat repairs and ensuring the race continues safely. The boat's technical team is therefore currently considering the possibility of stopping over in Brazil to organise this intervention as quickly as possible to replace the part," continues the MACIF press release.

    Before arriving in Brazil, the trimaran is preparing to cross the Doldrums almost at the same time as the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, on which Franck Cammas and Charles Caudrelier had a small issue during the night, as Caudrelier explained: "We had a problem with the gennaker swivel, which allows the sail to be furled. It wasn’t working. The tack end of the gennaker had come out of the furling system and was stuck. It was a real problem, because the sail is 400m2, and we arrived in a potential squall zone where this type of incident can have serious consequences”.

    With the problem solved, this Saturday afternoon, Maxi Edmond de Rothschild is now starting to feel the first effects of the Doldrums. According to Christian Dumard, weather consultant for Brest Atlantiques, the two leading boats shouldn't really be slowed down: "They're going in, but conditions aren’t too bad, the exit is 400 miles ahead of them, I think they'll be out by Sunday morning. The Doldrums remain a concern as there are areas without wind, they will have to be vigilant”.

    Christian Dumard is less optimistic for the third trimaran, Sodebo Ultim 3 (Thomas Coville/Jean-Luc Nélias), and especially for Actual Leader (Yves Le Blevec/Alex Pella), which should be more restrained: "Actual Leader will probably be slowed down more because of a stormy zone that will cross the Doldrums". This was confirmed by Ronan Gladu, media man aboard Actual Leader, in his message of the day: "Once again, the challenge is to get ahead of the storm, for the big crossing of the famous Doldrums. The door will be open for Edmond de Rothschild and MACIF as it closes on us... In any case, it motivates Yves and Alex even more to "attack" as they say!" Given the smiles of the two skippers as they enjoyed bacon and eggs topped with garlic and olive oil served by Ronan Gladu, this didn't seem to dampen their spirits...
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    Pit Stops In Brazil For Brest Atlantiques Leaders

    Posted on 12.11.2019
    Since Tuesday morning, 9:18, the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild is in Salvador de Bahia where the technical team of Gitana Team is working to repair the central drift. The trimaran MACIF took control of "Brest Atlantiques", but will have to make a technical stop on Wednesday in Rio de Janeiro to replace its central hull saffron (loaned by the Team Banque Populaire). Sodebo Ultim 3 should take the opportunity to sit at the controls of the race ahead of Actual Leader. Every Tuesday, Sébastien Josse, a consultant for the race director, returns to the last week of "Brest Atlantiques".

    Let's first mention the departure of "Brest Atlantiques" and this descent into the Bay of Biscay, how did it go for the four trimarans?
    They all sailed like a sailor, leaving with one or two reefs and without a sail; they did not have much choice. They knew that there were six hours a little delicate under muscular conditions. The difference with the Route du Rhum last year is that it was more open, VMG, so less demanding for boats. They left quite quickly, at 28 knots average. They all looked a little, and after four to five hours, the trimaran MACIF unfurled its forward sail and immediately gained 4-5 knots. Maxi Edmond de Rothschild geared up. They are all competitors: when François ( Gabart)drew, Franck (Cammas) , it immediately titillated.

    Subsequently, there were different road choices, why do you think?
    Yes, the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild and Actual Leader went under the DST, it was not necessarily routing. The optimum route was more that followed by MACIF to the west. I think this trajectory inside was linked to stories from the sea , it was a bit wiser. After, it's always difficult, when you're under the wind of a boat, to luff, because you know you'll be behind.

    After, there was a battle of gybes ...
    Yes, with much more irregular winds than the files. In particular, when one makes a "gull wing" to go around the anticyclone, it is more stable. Maxi Edmond de Rothschild jibed first, then two more gybes. I think they tried to escape a grain under which they were stuck, they probably also wanted to avoid getting closer to the anticyclone, because the boat is heavier. Again, the routes gave more route to the west, but the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild crossed in front, because the boat is the fastest in the fleet. It has the advantage of having under the pedal, they are always a little faster, a little lower. We had already seen him on the Route du Rhum and the training sessions this year. Which is normal,30 meters against 32).


    How was the crossing of Pot-au-noir?
    I think they all looked well at what happened on the Transat Jacques Vabre. Since it went well enough in his east, it's always better to have benchmarks in front. Maxi Edmond de Rothschild did well. I think that in the soft zones, the damage of saffron of MACIF was penalizing: at high speed, beyond 25 knots, it is a plus to not have a central saffron, because it makes less trail. However, at low speed, in less than 15 knots, the boat becomes difficult to hold, they may have sometimes lost control and made some 360. So, to always have control of the boat, you sail less the sails are complicated as driving; but François excels in the field. He still did a Route du Rhum last year with a third of his appendages less!

    Do you think the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild has been penalized by his drifting problem?
    Yes, I think that between the Doldrums and Bahia, they should have approached flying mode of 35 knots average, or even beyond, while they have rarely passed above 30 knots.

    Will the two technical stops of Maxi Edmond de Rothschild in Bahia and the MACIF trimaran in Rio generate a gap in favor of Sodebo Ultim 3 and Actual?
    It obviously depends on the time of the stops; but yes, inevitably. When you stop, as these boats advance to more than 25 knots minimum, it allows those behind to quickly return. So Sodebo will take the lead, it can open for him if he has no damage and he does not stop. We know that this race will be full of twists with these pit stops that are completely part of the game.

    How do you judge the course so far of Sodebo Ultim 3 and Actual Leader?
    Actual Leader, we knew, has a speed deficit compared to the others, which was detrimental to the start of the race, because he did not have the same angles of descent, he was more downwind than the others who walked more through. After seeing the rest of the program in the South Atlantic, it will be different. There will no doubt be a tightening in his favor. And anyway, he can claim the others to the podium or even to victory. If he never stops and everyone else stops, he can win! As for Sodebo Ultim 3, we see that it goes a little slower than the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild and trimaran MACIF at certain speeds. This is related to the fact that it does not have a buoyant plan on the drift, but it is an assumed choice. I remember hearing Thomas say, two years ago, that he had designed this boat for the solo world tour planned initially at the end of this year and that in this light, he did not want to have too much artifice, believing that reliability was paramount. For the moment, that gives him reason, since he will take the lead.

    Let's talk about the rest of the program: how is the road to Cape Town in the South Atlantic?
    Complicated! For now, the road is blocked by the St. Helena anticyclone which is very South. Engaging in the south, as is traditionally done, seems difficult, you find yourself blocked by both the anticyclone and the ice limit which is quite north. The option seems to go north of the anticyclone with close up for a while. For the moment, this stage of the south between Rio and Cape Town, announces itself with headwind.

    And the close, it is not very pleasant ...
    Not necessarily. Today, on these boats in flight mode, you can advance to 28-30 knots offshore. They are mounted on shock absorber, so comfort level, it is not so unpleasant, it sails very flat. It will however be less comfortable for Actual Leader who does not fly like the others. Otherwise, the downside is that it solicits a little more the boat.

    Yann Riou / PolaRyse / Gitana SA

    Here is the word from the edge of Martin Keruzoré, media man on Sodebo Ultim 3, which looks back on its first week of racing on Brest Atlantiques.

    The joy of starting on this new adventure is quickly relegated to the background and gives way to the challenge of producing images in its muscular conditions. Helmet on the head and concentration at its maximum just crossed the starting line to avoid injury or break equipment, rule number one that I had set on this start of the race. It shakes and it flies in all directions, computer, tablet, camera case, you must constantly secure everything with carabiners, rubber bands, systems of all kinds if you do not want your work tools to end up in two pieces, under the wind, in a bath of salt. Helmet on the head and concentration at its maximum just crossed the starting line to avoid injury or break equipment, rule number one that I had set on this start of the race. It shakes and it flies in all directions, computer, tablet, camera case, you must constantly secure everything with carabiners, rubber bands, systems of all kinds if you do not want your work tools to end up in two pieces, under the wind, in a bath of salt. Helmet on the head and concentration at its maximum just crossed the starting line to avoid injury or break equipment, rule number one that I had set on this start of the race. It shakes and it flies in all directions, computer, tablet, camera case, you must constantly secure everything with carabiners, rubber bands, systems of all kinds if you do not want your work tools to end up in two pieces, under the wind, in a bath of salt.

    It's a real marathon, a race over time, we have thousands of miles to tell the story, the strategy adopted by the sailors is also good for us, not to spoil the man and the machine. Fortunately spared from seasickness, I will not hide that I took 4-5 days to find the rhythm of "cruise" on board, normally it takes me 2-3 days on a "classic" boat. Finding the rhythm is for me to agree with the boat, eat well, sleep well, perform daily tasks, but it is also to be in agreement with the men, understand them, integrate this duo without disturbing them, without get noticed. We too have our share of small galleys; on my side, the drone that I had embarked never wanted to take off, today,

    In a few days, once past the hot Brazilian waters, we will head to the East, difficult conditions are at the rendezvous and we will make every effort to report to you daily on the situation using our cameras. "

    Photo: Martin Keruzoré / Sodebo Ultim 3

    The near, a close pace, closer to the wind. When you talk about sailing closely, it is not usually to evoke good memories. This term is often synonymous with suffering, it knocks, it hits, it does not move, and think again

    Since yesterday, on our Ultim, sailing at 60 degrees from the wind since the end of the endless doldrums is a real pleasure. You probably will not believe me, but it's relaxing, yes. Our boats have this fabulous ability to pass the sea and chop with ease, which at its wind angles, we are mainly facing. These machines literally fly over this mogul field, at a regular cottage, gentle movements, it's fluid, it's graceful. The average speed is still very correct in medium wind, so it is at this rate that we will arrive very quickly along the Brazilian coast.

    Tonight the wind is falling and the sea is flattening, as if to wave politely to the sun to give way, plunging into the West and leaving the dance floor to Madame la Lune, entering through the main door to the East . The night will be soft, the trade wind is hot and salty, the drift whistles and the foil sings. Good night

    Martin Keruzoré / Médiaman aboard de Sodebo Ultim 3

    Finally ! Finally we came out of this pot to black endless!
    Compared to most sailboats, it was very short ... but what
    intensity. A frantic race with the clouds that never stopped
    to inflate above us, to drive mad!
    And again, I was "cool" watching Yves and Alex wincher and
    maneuver almost non-stop for 24 hours!
    But the efforts paid off, it was a good operation for us, I
    believe that we have returned almost 100 miles to the rest of the fleet.
    And the end, at moonrise, was magical. To finally see the stars
    in front of and the moon forge a path through the last mutant grain
    behind ... a feeling of liberation and victory: finally came out of
    claws of the monster!
    We are now at "reaching", all the way to Rio. And
    you know what ? And the "reaching" is pretty unbearable,
    especially at the bottom of the hold! I make good in every way in front of the
    keyboard, the machine is perfectly tuned: we do not stop it anymore!
    The only place where we could be good is in the bunk, but
    the heat is unbearable. Besides, my "cellar" begins to smell
    the wild beast! I live even with the trash cans. I would have to
    motivates to send them forward, to the intended location but it is necessary to
    sneak into a narrow neck, then along the central drift, into
    the bowels of the beast. No way to do that now, to
    28-30nds on a mogul field, I will finish inlaid in the carbon!
    We passed the equator, symbolic moment ... I slept! Same
    time, the two of them, have spent more than 30 times, on any type of
    boats. Like everyday life. And I've already crossed it by bike, at
    Gabon, with my colleagues from Lost in the Swell - Yves told me that,
    it was class!
    In any case the boat looks in good shape and the sailors recover
    gently sleep. Whenever I get in the cabin, there is
    has one that snores like a mammoth under prozac. I even took the
    time to make a big dish of tuna pasta, it feels good!
    Besides, I have to stop complaining, we're here, at
    calm and warm ... See what awaits us in Rio (wind very strong) and the
    rotten scenario looming towards South Africa, we are not at
    end of our adventures!

    Ronan Gladu / Médiaman à bord d'Actual Leader
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  9. #9
    despondent correspondent Photoboy's Avatar
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    Rio And Salvador de Bahia Pit Stops Give Macif & Sodebo Advantage

    Photo: Ronan Gladu / Actual Leader

    Posted on 13.11.2019
    Always leader of "Brest Atlantiques" since the stop, Tuesday, Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, trimaran MACIF should arrive around 19h (French time) in Rio de Janeiro where he will stop for a change of central hull saffron. Sodebo Ultim 3 is expected about five hours later in the Cagarras Islands, where he could seize the orders of the fleet. At the back, Actual Leader and especially the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild were considerably slowed down in a zone without wind.

    The big maneuvers are preparing for the MACIF team on the Marina side of Gloria, site of the sailing events of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, where the trimaran led by François Gabart and Gwénolé Gahinet, disabled from Cape Verde by the breakage of its central hull saffron, must arrive around 19-20h (French time). At 16h, he had crossed the Cabo Frio and progressed by jibing towards Rio, with an east wind in the back of 18 knots. The stop will allow the technical team to replace the damaged central hull saffron in a collision with an OFNI by the one that could be recovered by the Team Banque Populaire last year after the rupture of the front arm that caused the capsizing , on the Route du Rhum, Banque Populaire IX led by Armel Le Cléac'h.

    This stop will benefit Sodebo Ultim 3 which, pointed 100 miles from MACIF at 16h, will probably seize for the first time since the departure of Brest orders "Brest Atlantiques". Thomas Coville and Jean-Luc Nélias are expected to cross the Cagarras Islands, located 2.5 miles off the mythical Ipanema Beach, about five hours after MACIF, around midnight. And after Christian Dumard, weather consultant to the race direction, Sodebo Ultim 3 has a good chance to take to their heels once marked e passed:"They will start at the front of a depression in a sustained wind around 25 knots but at reaching, ideal conditions to go fast, while for those who later pass to the Cagarras, the wind will be stronger at the same time. , 28-30 knots, and more of face. "

    A situation that is not necessarily going to do the business of Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, on board which, since the departure of Salvador de Bahia Tuesday at 22:58, Franck Cammas and Charles Caudrelier are living painful moments, evidenced by their average score of 2.6. knots over four hours between 12h and 16h classifications! "A depression is coming up from South Africa, with in its north a front that goes to Brazil and their bar the road, they are passing in, with very little wind along the Brazilian coast. As they left Salvador, they could not recede to the east and have much less wind than the Leader Leader more offshore ", adds Christian Dumard. Yves Le Blevec and Alex Pella, who between 12 and 16h, advanced to 14.2 knots, will probably take the opportunity to grab the third place.

    In short, the maps of "Brest Atlantiques" are completely redistributed as the first mark passes, and it is probably not over to believe Christian Dumard: "On the other side of the South Atlantic, Sodebo may crash into the anticyclone, so it could come back from behind, especially since the St. Helena high pressure will tend to rise, which could open a small door to pass in its south. » To be continued ...


    Photo: Jérémie Eloy / MACIF trimaran

    Here is the word of the board sent this Wednesday, November 13 by Jérémie Eloy, media man on the trimaran MACIF.

    "A week at sea, a goodbye, a storm, a doldrums, an equator, the alizé, sunsets, moon lifts, flying fish, infinite surf, starry nights, an OFNI, the passing sea, screaming foil, shared meals, stories told, chills, anguish, restless nights, smiles, laughter, tea chocolate, din, a ship that does not understand why do not get confused for the photos ...

    In a week, I got to know this boat, its reactions, its whispers, its screams, its creaking, its joys, its pains, its rhythm, all shared with my adventure acolytes. I like to watch the sea unfurling, sometimes I take a look, just to know if it's still there. But frankly today, in the wind, the desire to jump into the water, rinse, was more than tempting but already a laughing up his nose, the boat snorts, curve echin, and resumes more, it hisses, it screams. We know that we go to Rio, repair, heal, find the mainland, to better start, to another continent, Africa. "


    Photo: Yann Riou / PolaRyse / Gitana SA

    Posted on 13.11.2019
    Here is the word of the board received Wednesday, November 13 Yann Riou, media man aboard the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild.

    "Funny day, suspended race, stopover, a lot of work by the technical team, and a few hours after joining Salvador, even before he got used to the comfort of life on the mainland. again sitting in the same place as yesterday, my tablet on the lap Just above, Franck and Charles have resumed their quarters.In the race, nothing seems to have changed since yesterday, and yet our boat has found its potential, our skippers are over-motivated, our team can be proud of the work done and our dishes are clean, we spent a day in Brazil.

    PS: I think this is the first time I come to Brazil without drinking a single caipirinha! "


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  10. #10
    despondent correspondent Photoboy's Avatar
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    An Abrupt ABout Face For Sodebo

    In view of the current weather conditions on zone: a very active depression in the south of Brazil that quickly formed last night and the high of st. Hélène High, Thomas Coville and Jean-Luc Nélias decided to time. They are studying with the cell on earth the best road to take to Cape Town in the best safety / performance compromise.

    Given the muscular conditions on the course (45 knots of wind, a sea formed facing the boat),
    the crew chose to delay to guarantee the safety of the men and the integrity of the boat. No major problems aboard

    Projected weather system in the the 24 hours and 48 hours

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