Approaching the Equator

Geronimo now making better progress

Tuesday March 4th 2003, Author: Rivacom, Location: Transoceanic
Day 52 Position 24hr run Av speed Rel position
Geronimo 07°39S 3°47W 402nm 16.73 +352*
Orange 09°39S 21°30W 540nm 22.49 -
*Measured relative a point further up the track for Orange last year.

Geronimo's position position at 15:00 GMT today: 5°11S 33°13W
Distance travelled in 12 hours : 152 nautical miles
Average speed over the last 12 hours: 12.65 knots

On her 52nd day at sea, Geronimo, the Cap Gemini and Schneider Electric sponsored trimaran covered 402 nautical miles at an average speed of 16.73 knots.

Now though, Geronimo has reached the Doldrums and so is being subject to winds that are uncertain in their strength and direction, while the sky is full of black clouds and violent squalls are interspersed with lightning flashes.

Olivier de Kersauson and his 10-man crew are now having to cope with some very challenging sailing conditions. Although the easterly wind is well established, it fluctuates between 6 and 10 knots in strength and is regularly crossed by northerly squalls travelling at between 35 and 40 knots. These 45° swings in the wind mean that the crew is constantly having to reduce and increase sail. This situation is due partly to a relatively low airflow, resulting from the fact that the trade winds are not fully established.

Nevertheless, Geronimo should cross the Equator tomorrow morning, at which time she will undoubtedly have fallen slightly behind the current record. Last year, Orange took 11 days, 3 hours and 48 minutes to cover the distance between the Equator and Ushant.

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