|Date/time||Lat||Long||Spd||Crs||24 hrs||DTF||v Orange|
|19-Feb 11:00||44°55.93 S||069°11.41 E||31.1||93°||750.6||15 338||-245.2|
|19-Feb 09:00||44°51.07 S||067°42.46 E||32||98°||736.3||15 396||-255|
|19-Feb 07:00||44°38.26 S||066°10.83 E||31.2||100°||681.3||15 460||-274.8|
|19-Feb 05:00||44°29.25 S||064°48.10 E||32.8||99°||648.9||15 516||-289.9|
|19-Feb 03:00||44°20.19 S||063°18.64 E||32.1||97°||619.5||15 576||-316.2|
|19-Feb 01:00||44°09.41 S||061°50.35 E||32.5||103°||583.4||15 637||-338.7|
|18-Feb 23:00||44°00.22 S||060°22.84 E||31.7||101°||552.2||15 696||-357.1|
|18-Feb 21:00||43°45.62 S||058°54.41 E||28.4||104°||513.5||15 759||-378.3|
|18-Feb 18:00||43°21.45 S||056°56.63 E||34||107°||472.6||15 845||-394.1|
|18-Feb 16:00||43°01.79 S||055°24.53 E||36.6||106°||430.3||15 913||-414.1|
|18-Feb 14:00||42°37.26 S||054°00.79 E||30.7||113°||409.7||15 978||-433.2|
|18-Feb 12:00||42°30.37 S||052°46.51 E||27.1||81°||410||16 028||-445.9|
|18-Feb 10:00||42°34.60 S||051°27.57 E||26||97°||398.8||16 075||-456.1|
|18-Feb 08:00||42°48.75 S||050°43.15 E||4.1||59°||401.5||16 096||-441.3|
|18-Feb 06:00||42°48.91 S||050°27.05 E||13.7||100°||414.2||16 106||-415.4|
|18-Feb 04:00||42°43.20 S||049°32.88 E||15.5||101°||397.3||16 144||-416.7|
|18-Feb 02:00||42°38.14 S||049°00.42 E||18.7||95°||416.4||16 167||-402.3|
|18-Feb 00:00||42°34.35 S||048°16.69 E||16.2||94°||431.7||16 197||-391.2|
|17-Feb 22:00||42°30.84 S||047°36.14 E||12.1||96°||445.7||16 225||-376.9|
|17-Feb 20:00||42°26.33 S||046°56.30 E||18.6||101°||466.1||16 253||-357.3|
|17-Feb 18:00||42°18.05 S||046°17.57 E||8.2||81°||483.5||16 282||-348.3|
|17-Feb 15:00||42°23.41 S||045°15.07 E||24.2||86°||497.8||16 320||-341|
|17-Feb 12:00||42°25.40 S||043°30.48 E||27.8||95°||470.5||16 388||-343.6|
Finally Groupama 3 is into some stable strong northwesterlies that are enabling her to catch up with her virtual opponent, Orange 2. This morning finds Franck Cammas' big green trimaran some 250 miles to the north of the main island in the Kerguelen archipelago, enjoying 25-30 knot northwesterlies that are propelling her at speeds well into the 30s (at one sched yesterday evening she had averaged 36.6 knots!). But this followed another desperately slow period for her over Wednesday-Thursday night when on occasions her boat speed was down to single figures.
Typically a gale at the Kerguelen can be every bit as dangerous as a gale at Cape Horn, however Groupama is suitably far north to be away from the danger zone - the plateau surrounding this remote group of French islands.
The depression Groupama 3 is riding at present is not deep in the Southern Ocean as should be the case in this part of the world. Instead it is some 900 miles away directly to their west and in fact she is riding the tailwinds in the northeast quadrant off a secondary depression spawned from the big depression.
The forecast has the primary depression consolidating over the next 24 hours and heading east. The next 24 hours should be fast for Groupama however the easterly track of the depression isn't fast enough and she is in danger of running into the ridge to its east by tomorrow morning. This ridge looks substantial and may force Groupama south unless she wants to run into it. Come Monday, unless the forecast changes (which it may well don) then it looks like the N-S orientated ridge due south of Cape Leuwin will be barring her way east and there will be no way out other than another slow period.
"We're happy to have finally tracked down the wind we were expecting so it's pedal to the metal now!" reported Franck Cammas yesterday. "We've been making an average of 30 knots since this morning, and though conditions aren't quite stable yet, the speeds are becoming reasonable again... The past few days have been frustrating with this front which could easily have set us free: on three occasions we attempted to cross it but it didn't work until the fourth attempt. Finally the front came to a halt, but we had to bide our time... Right now it's not that cold as we're only at 42° South, though there's quite a bit of rain beneath the front. It's a fairly good sign because it's synonymous with us having crossed this latest obstacle."