mare into the lead

As Normandy Channel Race Class 40 frontrunners approach Guernsey turning mark

Wednesday April 17th 2013, Author: James Boyd, Location: none selected

Positions at 0900 UTC

Pos Boat Crew   Lat Long Spd Crs DTF DTL
1 Mare Jörg Riechers Pierre Brasseur 49 30.92' N 3 15.92' W 10 111 131.33 0
2 Made In Normandy Nicolas Jossier Alexandre Toulorge 49 31.08' N 3 19.00' W 8.4 104 133.31 1.99
3 Campagne de France Halvard Mabire Miranda Merron 49 35.67' N 3 31.61' W 10.9 103 142.48 11.15
4 Geodis Fabrice Amedeo Armel Tripon 49 37.12' N 3 46.52' W 10.2 102 149.52 18.2
5 Groupe Picoty Jean- Christophe Caso Aymeric Chappellier 49 44.92' N 4 15.64' W 11.4 107 157.35 26.03
6 Red Mathias Blumencron Boris Herrmann 49 40.84' N 4 02.08' W 9.6 109 162.68 31.36
7 Momentum Ocean Racing Dan Dytch Emma Creighton 49 41.72' N 4 06.40' W 10.4 102 165.61 34.29
8 Al Bucq Brieuc Maisonneuve Ned Collier Wakefield 49 43.60' N 4 07.00' W 13.6 107 166.47 35.15
9 Phoenix Europe Carac Louis Duc Stéphanie Alran 49 42.00' N 4 09.04' W 11.2 110 167.32 35.99
10 Phesheya-Racing Phillippa Hutton-Squire Pip Hare 50 03.92' N 5 46.56' W 7.6 242 234.14 102.82
11 Obportus3 Olivier Roussey Philippe Burger 50 38.99' N 5 39.05' W 7.7 250 267.74 136.41
ABD Eärwen Catherine Pourre Goulven Royer            
ABD GDF Suez Sebastien Rogues Ludovic Aglaor            
ABD Jasmine Flyer Thibault Reinhart Nicolas Boidévezi            
ABD Kogane Patrice Bougard Gilles Dadou            
ABD Mr Bricolage Damien Rousseau Benjamin Develay            
ABD Norma Concept - Le Pal Bruno Jourdren  Thomas Ruyant            
ABD Partouche Christophe Coatnoan Jean-Charles Monnet            
ABD Pascal Atkey & son of Cowes Piers Tyler James Stableford            
ABD Swish Roderick Knowles Paul Peggs            

Over the course of the early hours of this morning as the boats have been heading back across English Channel, so Jorg Reichers and Pierre Brasseur and their Mach 40 mare have taken the lead of the Normandy Channel Race overhauling Nicolas Jossier and Alexandre Toulorge on Made in Normandie. The German Class40 (see a video tour of her here), clearly a powerful reaching machine,  moved into the lead at 0315 and was confirmed as the new leader in the 0500 sched and at the latest update this is up to two miles.

At present the boats are bound for the next turning mark of the course, Guernsey, 23 miles from mare at the latest sched, beaming reaching with the wind still in the southwest and blowing at around 20 knots.

Behind Halvard Mabire and Miranda Merron on Campagne de France are 11 miles astern at the latest sched with a further seven miles back Fabrice Amedeo and Armel Tripon on Geodis. But the fight is really on between the tightly knit group behind.

The top four Class 40s are expected off Guernsey at around and as they head past Raz Blanchard and Barfleur, they’ll have a favourable current until 1800 this evening. With 131 miles to go until they return to Ouistreham, mare is due in in the early hours of tomorrow morning.

Philippa Hutton-Squire and Pip Hare aboard the Akilaria Mk1 Phesheya Racing, currently off Land's End, described the conditions: "Wet, bumpy and very choppy seas. Banging up and slamming down - not too much fun".

Louis Duc, skipper of Phoenix Europe–Carac, reported: “48 hours is the time it takes me to relocate what I need to write some messages... Please note that if you find some spelling mistakes in this email, it’s just typing errors resulting from my Spanish keyboard, which isn’t quite the same as usual in terms of the accents. Thank you to the organisation for not sending us into the storm and enabling us to sidestep a spell of upwind sailing in 40 knots of breeze. Tittle-tattlers may well say that sailors have turned into women, no longer wanting to sail in the rough weather. In reality the reverse is true. Women have developed a great deal in terms of seamanship. Proof of this comes from Sylvie Viant, Race Director, who took the decision not to take us to Fastnet or Tuskar Rock, where the return leg was looking very tough and boat-breaking. Before dumping our fine Phoenix Europe spinnaker as we went around the Isle of Wight, in our moment of glory the sail blew out in a gentle puff of air... that hampered our progress today between Land’s End and the passage mark. The passage across the Solent wasn’t very successful, but we’re very happy with our boat. We have confirmation that ours is a weapon capable of teasing the front runners...”

Jean-Christophe Caso, on Groupe Picoty said: “A slight change of programme on this third day of racing with a shortened course. The weather is forecast to be really bad to very bad in the Irish Sea, so there’s absolutely no point in sending us into the lion’s den. We’re into a routine with life on board and rest has been the main goal today, after a fairly good start to the race. Fatigue got the better of us last night where the different sail changes accompanied by quite a lot of wind caused us to drop off the pace a little, which is what has opened up this difference this morning. The front runners are barely 10 miles ahead, so we’re not letting up! We’re in contact with 2 boats, which we can see, and we’re on the attack.”


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