Vendee Globe : Fast Fa on Les Sables Layline

Saturday, 04 February 2017


Saturday 04 February 2017, 07h37  Nandor Fa is getting a perfect slingshot towards Les Sables d'Olonne on a fast moving low pressure system. This Saturday morning he has a 1300 miles layline for the finish line and is making a steady 15kts on Spirit of Hungary. Fa has 25-30kts of wind and his ETA on the finish line of his second Vendée Globe is still Tuesday afternoon.

The Azores high pressure system (marked with an H on the chart) is back to its normal place, south or south-west of the Azores. The wind rotates clockwise around this big blue area with no wind in its center. The skippers have to round it via the West. They will then try to stay in the zone with winds between 20 and 30 knots to its north. They will have to choose the right moment to sail north towards the finishing line, between two depressions. For most of the skippers, the goal is now to finish the race and to avoid extreme conditions, like those forecast tomorrow in the Bay of Biscay with winds blowing at 60 knots.

After Louis Burton, it is Nandor Fa who has just passed to the north of the high. He will be followed by Eric Bellion and Conrad Colman for whom the weather patterns look identical.

Fa is the first non French skipper ever to finish the Vendée Globe. He completed the 1992 race in fifth place behind Alain Gautier, Jean Luc Van Den Heede, Philippe Poupon and Yves Parlier, rounding in 128d 16h. This time he will me more than one month quicker, on course to arrive in 93 days.
Eric Bellion (CommeUnSeulHomme) is wriggling northwards slowly trying to get around the west side of the Azores high and seems to have escaped the lightest winds, making 11.4kts.
Three hundred and 40 miles behind Bellion Conrad Colman (Foresight Natural Energy) is still in a good tradewind, NE'ly 16-18kts and is making 11kts with just over 1000 miles to the Azores.
La Mie Caline and Newrest Matmut, Arnaud Boissières and Fabrice Amedeo, are in lighter E'ly winds, chasing Amedeo is 85 miles behind and very slightly quicker this morning.
Alan Roura (La Fabrique) is still feeling the Doldrums effect making just 7kts this morning but is easing north into a more settled breeze.
Rich Wilson has just over one day to get to the Equator on Great American IV and is making easy, steady miles northwards doing 12kts this morning.
OnePlanet OneOcean is 22 miles ahead of Famille Mary-Etamine du Lys today, Didac Costa continuing to hold a very small speed advantage over Romain Attanasio.
in 17th place Pieter Heerema (No Way Back) is starting to feel a stronger, more regular E'ly breeze and is making 11kts boat speed.
And Sébstien Destremau is still downspeed in the high pressure ridge 745 miles SE of Buenos Aires.

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Last Updated ( Saturday, 04 February 2017 )