Groupe Edmond de Rothschild into the lead

After Race For Water suffers a collision with a submerged container in the MOD70's Krys Ocean Race

Sunday July 8th 2012, Author: James Boyd, Location: none selected

At the latest sched the five MOD70s competing in the Krys Ocean Race are already well out into the Atlantic, the leaders some 340 miles NNE of Bermuda. The Seb Josse skippered Groupe de Edmond de Rothschild leads the fleet narrowly ahead of Spindrift and Foncia.

Chart above courtesy of Expedition/Tasman Bay Navigation Systems and GRIB (European model) from PredictWind

Positions at 1530 UTC

Pos Boat Skipper Lat Lon Spd Crs DTF DTL
1 Gitana Seb Josse 37 35.580n 061 35.050w 29.1 96 2516.73 0
2 Spindrift Yann Guichard 37 31.340n 061 43.200w 28.8 97 2524.46 7.73
3 Foncia Michel Desjoyeaux 37 31.090n 061 45.170w 30.5 98 2525.9 9.17
4 Oman Sail Sidney Gavignet 37 22.410n 061 58.060w 27.8 107 2539.23 22.5
5 Race for Water Steve Ravussin 38 01.030n 063 48.090w 26.8 93 2590.32 73.59

As the first 24 hours of racing elapsed since a relatively benign, departure from New York, it was Sidney Gavignet and the crew of Musandam-Oman Sail which set the level, heading for a first day’s run of around 610 miles. The team which includes two less experienced Omani sailors – Moshin Al Busaidi and Fahad Al Hasni - were just under five miles ahead of Seb Josse’s Groupe Edmond de Rothschild.

During a first night during which Foncia skipper Michel Desjoyeaux admitted that they had initially struggled to find their ideal configuration and pace, Gavignet and his crew took the lead during the small hours of Sunday. Though they latterly conceded a few miles to Josse and his crew, Musandam-Sail Oman showed a sustained speed advantage, averaging more than 30 knots in the building soutwesterlies.

“We are just trying to hang on, tt is as simple as that,” Gavignet reported Sunday afternoon, “We have just had our first nose down at 32 knots. It was not so nice. Temperatures are warm but it is still difficult to sleep. It is all good on Oman Sail. Moshin and Fahid are doing great.”

If the morale was high on board the race leaders, there was disappointment for Stève Ravussin and the crew of Race for Water. The Swiss team damaged their daggerboard around 0500 this morning after hitting a partially submerged container while leading the race.

Three of the crew, including composite expert Yvan Ravussin were charged with effecting a composite repair to the damage, and this afternoon they reported that they had the board back in place, though not fully immersed and powered up.

Steve Ravussin reported: "Our daggeboard is broken at different levels and there is not too much more that we can do. We have put it back in place but lost time during the repair and the checking the boat over but now are back at race pace. We are in winds of 25 knots and three metres seas.”

Sébastien Josse added: “Conditions are those that we expected really, winds have been downwind. The first night at sea is quite good. The seas are getting up a little as we get into the Gulf Stream. Usually we have two or three people on deck with someone on standby all the time. We saw Race for Water at the start of the night but they are out of sight. But we monitor the fleet on the computer and can see we all have similar conditions.”

The fleet remained tightly matched heading east, diverging from the great circle, with just six miles of lateral separation between Musandam-Oman Sail to the south and the track of Groupe Edmond de Rothschild and Foncia slightly to the north.

Weather forecasts confirm at least another two days of high speed conditions.

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