BritAir take the lead

As the Transat AG2R La Mondiale fleet blasts southwest in the Trades

Wednesday April 28th 2010, Author: James Boyd, Location: none selected

See the image above full size here courtesy of Expedition Navigation Systems and PredictWind.

NO!!! Sam Davies and Romain Attanasio on Saveol appear to have lost the lead in the Transat AG2R La Mondiale as the boats surge southwest in the northeasterly trades. At the first sched this morning, Cercle Verte's Gildas Morvan and Bertrand de Broc had overtaken them but at the latest one it is Armel le Cleac'h and Fabien Delahaye on BritAir. In fact it is not as straightforward as this as the track of BritAir and Cercle Verte are both marginally to the north of  Davies and Attanasio's Saveol and so nearly to the great circle. In terms of the southwesterly course they are heading Saveol is still a nose ahead. 

As reported yesterday the weather over the next few days looks pretty stable with a high pressure moving around to the north of the fleet but generally there will be some brisk trade winds and endless roaring downwind flat out in the Trades in a reported 27-28 knot winds.

With this weather scenario there seems to be no reason to go north on the great circle as thanks to the high pressure there will be less wind here. The question is how far south to go. The track that Saveol and her group has taken - where there is 9 miles laterally separating the four boats - has been adopted by most of the fleet with the exception of Nicolas Troussel and Thomas Rouxel on Credit Mutuel de Bretagne who continue to bang the left side of the course where there is the potential for more breeze, with the downside of having to sail more miles. So far this hasn't worked out too well as they have dropped from 8th to 13th over the last 24 hours.

Fabien Delahaye reported from Brit Air: "Yesterday, we went quickly and that enabled us to pull back on Savéol. I take turns on the helm with Armel. We lost sight of Cercle Verte and Banque Populaire last night. We strived to make the boat go as quickly as possible and it seems we've found some good settings. After sunset last night we had 2 hour watches, so between Armel and me, one rested and one helmed to keep us efficient. There are very pleasant conditions, we can sail quickly and it's beautiful! I have learned a lot on this Transat - Armel likes to plan, to be at the chart table to examine the various options. Once he has made all his calculations, we discuss the possibilities together and we each give our point of view. I concentrate on our strategy, the weather, the trim and where we stand with that. In the hours to come, there will be a small anticyclonic phase to get through,"

Positions at 0748

Pos Boat Lat Spd Crs Spd2 Crs3 Spd4 Dist DTF DTL
  Crew Long Instant   4 hour av   24 hours      
                     
1 BRIT AIR 25 48.62' N 10.5 235 11.6 234.0 8.4 201.3 2283.1 0.0
  Armel Le Cleac'h/Fabien Delahaye 22 38.65' W                
2 SAVEOL 25 45.95' N 10.0 237 11.0 230.0 7.8 187.9 2285.0 1.9
  Romain Attanasio/Sam Davies 22 36.34' W                
3 CERCLE VERT 25 53.48' N 12.5 220 10.9 230.0 8.1 195.1 2286.9 3.8
  Gildas Morvan/Bertrand de Broc 22 34.73' W                
4 BANQUE POPULAIRE 25 49.80' N 9.0 230 9.8 214.0 7.8 188.2 2295.0 12.0
  Jeanne Grégoire/Gérald Véniard 22 25.40' W                
5 GASPE 7 26 29.50' N 9.0 234 12.1 234.0 7.3 174.5 2338.9 55.8
  Joseph Brault/Antoine Koch 21 39.39' W                
6 GEDIMAT 26 28.00' N 14.5 228 11.4 229.0 7.5 179.8 2345.4 62.4
  Armel Tripon/Franck Le Gal 21 31.94' W                
7 GENERALI Europ Assistance 26 43.15' N 11.0 238 12.0 232.0 7.8 188.3 2347.7 64.6
  Yann Elies/Jérémie Beyou 21 30.59' W                
8 GENERALI 26 20.41' N 16.5 224 11.4 225.0 7.3 174.4 2352.6 69.6
  Nicolas Lunven/Jean Le Cam 21 23.30' W                
9 LUFTHANSA 26 33.04' N 13.0 235 11.8 230.0 7.6 181.5 2353.1 70.0
  Ronan Treussart/Yannick Le Clech 21 23.71' W                
10 AGIR Recouvrement 27 27.21' N 15.5 239 12.3 245.0 8.8 211.6 2363.0 79.9
  Adrien Hardy/Stanislas Maslard 21 17.34' W                
11 SAVE THE RICH 27 08.41' N 15.5 229 12.0 234.0 8.2 195.8 2374.9 91.8
  Christophe Bouvet/Yannick Bestaven 20 56.53' W                
12 LUISINA 26 40.93' N 16.5 242 12.5 235.0 7.8 186.6 2376.9 93.8
  Eric Drouglazet/Laurent Pellecuer 20 57.65' W                
13 CONCARNEAU - ST BARTH 26 46.77' N 14.0 231 11.8 229.0 7.6 183.3 2381.2 98.1
  Miguel Danet/Damien Cloarec 20 53.26' W                
14 CREDIT MUTUEL DE BRETAGNE 26 04.33' N 12.5 229 11.3 220.0 6.1 145.6 2382.4 99.3
  Nicolas Troussel/Thomas Rouxel 20 49.03' W                
15 SKIPPER MACIF 2009 26 45.76' N 14.5 229 11.4 226.0 7.4 177.9 2388.7 105.6
  Eric Peron/Gwen Riou 20 44.76' W                
16 KICKERS 26 58.90' N 10.5 233 11.2 222.0 7.0 169.0 2407.5 124.4
  Sébastien Picault/Laurent Bourgues 20 24.67' W                
17 Trier c'est préserver 27 08.62' N 13.0 235 10.8 220.0 7.0 167.6 2411.8 128.8
  Laurent Gouezigoux/Bertrand Delesne 20 20.54' W                
18 iSanté 27 28.09' N 11.0 218 11.2 229.0 7.2 172.0 2421.5 138.5
  Christophe Rateau/Sylvain Pontu 20 11.18' W                
19 GARMIN - ONE NETWORK ENERGIES 27 46.94' N 10.5 229 10.6 232.0 7.0 168.3 2445.9 162.9
  Yannig Livory/Erwan Livory 19 45.20' W                
20 GROUPE SNEF 27 56.36' N 14.0 247 12.5 229.0 7.7 184.1 2450.4 167.4
  Jean Paul Mouren/Paul Meilhat 19 40.98' W                
21 MAISONS DE L'AVENIR- URBATYS 27 31.30' N 14.5 218 10.9 220.0 6.3 150.9 2457.2 174.2
  H-P Schipman/Pierre Canevet 19 31.10' W                
22 MemoireStBarth.com 28 02.82' N 13.5 236 12.4 229.0 7.4 177.0 2465.3 182.2
  Richard Lédée/Christophe Lebas 19 24.72' W                
23 BcomBIO 27 50.20' N 9.0 201 9.9 214.0 6.3 150.2 2484.9 201.9
  Luce Molinier/Bertrand Castelnerac 19 01.28' W                
24 GROUPE BEL 28 53.45' N 10.5 267 7.2 269.0 3.1 74.4 2568.0 284.9
  Kito De Pavant/Sébastien Audigane 18 09.64' W                
  Cheminees Poujoulat                  
  Bernard Stamm/Gildas Mahé                  

 

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