|Date time||Lat||Long||VMG||Crs||Spd||Spd||24 hrs||DTF||DT G3|
|29/11/2011 06:45:00 UTC||13°39.97'S||033°26.43'W||12.4||201°||27.7||26.7||27.8||667||20 123||194.3|
|29/11/2011 03:45:00 UTC||12°22.03'S||033°04.28'W||15.9||194°||27.5||28.5||27.5||660.9||20 167||193.3|
|29/11/2011 00:45:00 UTC||10°58.24'S||032°41.51'W||17.5||196°||29.9||29.3||26.9||645.9||20 217||181.6|
|28/11/2011 21:45:00 UTC||09°31.66'S||032°16.55'W||19.4||194°||30||27.9||26.2||628.2||20 272||168|
|28/11/2011 18:45:00 UTC||08°05.17'S||031°59.05'W||18.4||193°||26.5||25.6||25||599.2||20 333||145.4|
|28/11/2011 15:45:00 UTC||06°47.60'S||031°44.12'W||17.7||192°||24.4||26.7||24.3||583.6||20 390||124.7|
|28/11/2011 12:45:00 UTC||05°28.05'S||031°28.69'W||21.9||190°||28.5||27.1||23.7||569||20 450||108.5|
|28/11/2011 09:45:00 UTC||04°04.46'S||031°15.25'W||20.1||190°||25.6||25||22.9||550.2||20 516||89.6|
|28/11/2011 07:45:00 UTC||03°13.68'S||031°05.21'W||18.1||196°||25.1||24.5||22.4||537.7||20 556||79.3|
Well we would have thought that Banque Populaire would have hung a left a bit sooner. At the latest sched the Loick Peyron-skippered 40m trimaran is passing Salvador de Bahia (the finish port of the Mini Transat and in past years, the Transat Jacques Vabre) having covered 667 miles in the last 24 hours and regularly making 30 knots.
The big tri continuing to err west is due the south Atlantic high being so far south. As a result the trades remain resolutely blowing from south of east. As the chart above shows, the trades at present don't back into the east fully until around the latitude of Rio. However the forecast shows this developing faster tomorrow, by which time Banque Populaire will be to the south of the latitude of Rio, the wind backing into the northeast, encouraged by the on-set of a depression, centred deep in the Southern Ocean to the southwest of the high, and another depression forming in the mouth of the River Plate between Argentina and Uruguay. So while Banque Populaire is sailing a course that is a little shorter than Groupama 3's, when she set her record at the beginning of 2010, and should be able to shave some more miles off when she cuts the corner around the high on Friday (when she will be into the high 30°Ss latitude in the northwesterlies ahead of the front), come the weekend at present it looks like she will have to dive further south than Groupama 3 did, below 40°S if she is to avoid the high pressure. Depending on how heavily Peyron and the crew hit the accelerator towards the end of the week, the big tri should be passing Cape Town on Saturday night-Sunday morning.
Still wallowing in the high, 168 miles from Cape Town, as he and his Groupama VO70 team attempt to finish leg one of the Volvo Ocean Race, Franck Cammas must be looking on enviously.