Wind frees for VDH

Staying on a more northerly track compared to record holder Philippe Monnet

Sunday December 15th 2002, Author: Jean-Luc van den Heede, Location: Transoceanic

The days follow one another but don't bear much resemblance! Yesterday was completely grey, cold, drizzly and windy. Yesterday evening the wind gradually weakened and I began to reset the solent then 2 reefs then full mainsail and a gentle wind abeam of 20/25 knots from the south pushed us along during the night at an average of 13 knots.

This morning even if the wind is heading a bit the conditions are superb with the sun taking pride of place. It is the first time in the Pacific that I have not been close hauled and have been able to maintain full mainsail for such a long time. I even got one of my three solar panels going again.

Talking of energy, Christian Pollet has given me a very simple idea for my wind generators: I now have a normal wind generator (up to 30/35 knots) and another for strong winds effective above 30 knots. How? Quite simply by removing 3 of the 6 blades which make it up. It's so simple but you had to think of it!

I haven't lost too much time on Philippe Monnet despite his descent into hell (65°S!) and as from tomorrow I should begin to gain again.

Until tomorrow

D +42 Position at 14H : 54°45’S 111°11’W (yesterday 54°21’S 104°32’W)
Wind SSW 23N. Temperature day 10°/ 5°C night /6°C water
Distance run in 24H: 234 naut miles (yesterday 179M) .
Advance on Monnet 4 days and 6 hours. Ante-meridian 2540 naut. miles away

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