Tough time for Geronimo
|Day 59||Position||24hr run||Av speed||Rel position|
Geronimo's position at 15:00 GMT today 29°19N 37°43W
Distance travelled in 12 hours : 201 nautical miles
Average speed over the last 12 hours: 16.73 knots
This record is not looking like it is going to go Olivier de Kersauson's way. While Geronimo has now finally got some pace on, this has only just happened. Her average SOG has now risen to over 16 knots, thanks to the 16-18 knots north-westerly winds. But there is still a long swell from the North, right on the track of the trimaran.
They have now hooked into the winds of the anticyclone over the Azores, that is blocking their direct path to the finish. The wind will veer round to the south the further north they go, one of those annoying predicaments where if they stay on starboard gybe it will put them on course but will head them into the centre of the high, while gybing in the opposite direction will send them to America. It is likely that de Kersauson will put some westing in so that he can rocket up the west side of the high on starboard gybe.
However even if Geronimo is likely to pick up speed over the next 1-2 days, the longer term forecast is looking bleak with a high pressure system over the UK providing uninterupted headwinds for Geronimo from the top of the high to the finish line.
Unfortunately at this time the crew of Orange, despite the problems they were encountering with the disintegrating ball at the bottom of their wingmast were making hay and as a result in their virtual race, Orange for the first time on their voyage is definitely ahead now.
In the lightish Trade Winds Olivier de Kersauson and his 10-man crew have used the time spent in this new area of calms to make a few running repairs: "We’ve replaced part of the mainsail runners and cut bit of the rail to release the bearings. Didier directed operations like a genius. These are the kind of jobs it’s fairly easy to do while there’s no air", explains de Kersauson, publicly putting a brave face on their predicament..
Below: weather at 1500GMT 12 March. Geronimo should be into the southerly breeze taking her past the Azores by this point
Below: weather at 1500GMT 13 March. Despite a helpful depression to the west of the Azores, it is still headwinds all the way to Ouessant. Merde! The high pressure system (off the picture to the northeast over the UK) will move slowly northeast.