Back into the Furious 50s
|Date time||Lat||Long||VMG||Crs||Spd||Spd||Spd||Dist||DTF||DT G3|
|Inst||4 hours||24 hrs|
|12/12/2011 09:45||51°25.45'S||143°29.78'E||29.6||129°||30.2||30.2||28.4||682.8||12 073||2 062.50|
|12/12/2011 06:45||50°30.80'S||141°33.78'E||31.4||128°||31.7||30.1||27.7||665.5||12 164||2 044.40|
|12/12/2011 04:00||49°43.10'S||139°47.62'E||31.2||125°||31.3||28.3||27.8||667.4||12 247||2 036.60|
|12/12/2011 01:00||48°49.02'S||137°54.15'E||19.7||132°||19.9||26.3||27.6||661.9||12 338||2 028.10|
|11/12/2011 21:30||47°59.82'S||135°56.18'E||29.3||122°||29.3||27.6||26.2||628.4||12 431||2 033.60|
|11/12/2011 18:45||47°18.39'S||134°15.95'E||30.2||120°||30.3||27||24.9||598.3||12 510||2 030.00|
|11/12/2011 15:45||46°30.16'S||132°41.27'E||30.8||126°||30.9||27||24.8||594||12 590||2 039.60|
|11/12/2011 12:45||45°41.91'S||131°02.29'E||24.4||121°||24.7||26.3||24||576.2||12 674||2 037.70|
|11/12/2011 09:45||44°56.64'S||129°24.57'E||26.6||119°||27||27.3||23.9||574||12 756||2 046.00|
Banque Populaire's speed has been slowly building since she gybed back to the southeast yesterday and so far this morning her average has been back to just over 30 knots. Her prolonged starboard gybe has taken her back into the Furious 50s as she passes some 500 miles to the south of Tasmania.
Yesterday afternoon crewman crewman Kevin Escoffier reported: "Everything is fine on board. We reached Cape Leeuwin yesterday with an extraordinary lead (over Groupama 3). We did not think we could do that in such a fast time. The 36 hours haven't been so easy. We had to slow down a lot because of the sea state and we saw 40-45 knots of wind. We ended up sailing downwind with three reefs and the jib - not a lot of canvas - due to the short sea. We gybed last night around 23:30 UTC and have been on starboard tack since in 25-30 knots of wind. The sea is still very big, but easier than yesterday because it is longer and we can get some nice surfs in - that's pretty amazing. The speedo is not very consistent as you can sail at 30 knots for a while and the next moment you're surfing at 40 knots!"
Escoffier continued: "We will continue on a long starboard gybe in the depression that has been accompanying us for a while. There will still be a lot of sea for the next 20 hours and a fairly steady wind. But we'll have to slow down again! With this boat, if you wanted to, you could sail at 40 knots all the time, but that is a risk we cannot take. Every time we change helm we give guidance on the speed to maintain, that's not to be exceeded, depending on the sea state. I did my stint on the helm this afternoon, and it's true that it is a little frustrating to have to have one's foot on the brake but you get a speed in mind, for example maintaining 30 knots and there was no choice but to do this if we want the boat to remain in one piece."
Given the light winds forecast to the south of New Zealand tomorrow we suspect that Banque Populaire may continue south to avoid these but it looks like she will have to continue deep into the 50s to achieve this, some 330 miles south of Groupama 3's track at this point in her Jules Verne Trophy record.