Velux 5 Oceans. Mike Golding & Ecover second in the south

Wednesday, 22 November 2006

Mike Golding is taking advantage of his position further to the south of Alex Thomson and this morning confirmed that he is quite confident he has re-taken second place in the Velux 5 Oceans solo round the world race. 

He was forthright in his suggestions that the race organisers should abandon or supplement the method in which they compute the mileage differentials between each boat. Presently the published mileage between each boat is measured from the leader. He explained that it does not take account of his own position relative to the finish, or the position of the leader relative to the finish line.

" I explained to David Adams (the race director) a week ago that we should have the distance to finish (of each boat) on the polling and he gave me one of his 'I'll take it into considerations' which basically means 'go to hell', and now here we are seeing the effects of it because overnight obviously I have had very high speeds and an efficient course, and they have been a little slower and there is no change to the distance to leader and that is reflected because Bernard (Stamm the race leader) is on a northerly heading, away from the great circle, and so consequently everything that everyone on the shore is looking at is completely false, the gains and losses are not reflected in distance to leader and if Bernard decides to do a Moitissier and head for Tahiti, it is really going to throw a spanner in the works!"

"Even though I was running a slightly smaller sail plan, I was working it hard last night and this morning, making sure I brought the bow up when the breeze was down and dropping it when it was up, and if you monitor things closely then you do get good results. We don't steer the boat, just steering on the pilot."

"The trouble with the situation is that I know I am a little bit ahead of Alex, and am further south of him, and soon will be further east of him, so I am pretty happy with that."

"He is trying to come down now, but I think that he is getting his timing wrong and in fact he is going to be coming south when we are going to be wanting to get back north, so I think he is getting a little out of sequence."

"He lost most of his miles in the soft spot and to be fair I did not see that as a calm, I just saw there to be slightly more breeze to the south. Most of the miles I have gained on him, I have gained out of that."

Mike reports that ECOVER's engine problems do seem to be behind him for the moment, although the exact fault has not been diagnosed, which does leave him concerned:

"I do think it will come back at some point, but so far it has run the last three times sweet as a nut."

On the domestic front, Mike tells us all is well. He has run out of Cornflakes and is getting low on biscuits but the essential supplies of tea and coffee are holding up. Cigarettes?

"I am almost certain to run out, but there will be no rationing and when they are done they are done."

Meanwhile his positive mood is bolstered by the continued indications from his routing software that there will be a significant compression of the fleet before Fremantle, "That is something that has been showing consistently for the last week now." He is now showing an ETA of 4th December.

Coralie Rassinoux

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 22 November 2006 )