Published Monday, Tuesday, Thursday
20 February 2001 Issue #
Today's Sailing News
The Race Report
While much of the image of the race has been the large pieces
of ocean gobbled up in a straight line, the leaders are now varying from this high speed game of follow the leader. As is typical of slower sailing
races, the competitors are resorting to different courses to make up distances.
In the current case Club Med is the leader, today by 1021 miles. Club Med is moving up the coast of South America steering NNE/018°.
Behind them sister ship Innovation Explorer is farther to the east. Additionally their course is NE/053°.
By taking this circuitous route, Innovation Explorer hopes to gain as easterly breeze that will be on their beam. Also, they expect to have easier sea conditions than the treacherous ones Club Med sailed in. Finally as they approach the Doldrums later in the week, they hope this course will give them a smoother and faster passage.
Those are the types of thoughts and plans that are attempted when
you trail by 1000 miles and have under 4000 miles to go. The past day
saw Club Med gain nearly another 100 miles on Innovation Explorer.
Eventually Explorer must have gains to show for this gambit, or it will fail.
Team Adventure has been repaired in New Zealand restarted with
emphasis. They covered 511 miles best in fleet.
The 110 footer is eyeing up Warta Polpharma currently 3rd. The
gap between the 2 is 325 miles. Team Adventure could be back in 3rd by
Team Legato is off the course docked in Wellington New Zealand.
She is the 3rd boat from the Race to come to Wellington in under a week.
Team Legato has lost 3 crew members for medical reasons. Team
Legato should leave Wellington later this week with 7 men onboard.
As the leaders near the equator Innovation Explorer has made
a heavy throw of the routing dice. Should no gains results from this it
would seem that Club Med's victory will be even more certain.
Times Clipper Update
Today marks the return of Sailing
Daily's Times Clipper Update. The 8 boat fleet has left Hawaii for to sail
west across the Pacific, off one side of the map and to the finish on the
maps other side in Yokohama Japan.
The leg will see some trade winds sailing to begin with. Then a crossing
of the International date line. This will switch the longitude line
on their GPS displays to east.
The distance for this leg is 3750 miles. As a reference point the outright record for this route is held by Steve Fossett sailing a
60 foot trimaran. His time 16 days an average of 11.29 knots. The fleet of Clipper mono hulls is expected to arrive in around 20 days or
Leader: Liverpool Clipper by 28 miles
Best 24 Hour Run: Liverpool Clipper 125 miles
Position: Fleet spread from 23 to 28 degrees north latitude. Jersey covered
only 74 miles at 23°. Leader Liverpool is to the north at 28°.
Current Weather: Moderate Northerlies
Weather Forecast: South change expected.
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Today's Sailing News
Leg 4 of the BT Challenge began in Wellington New Zealand. It's
a short leg north across the Tasman Sea to Sydney Australia.
The 12 boat fleet started at 1300 local time.
Shortly after the
start Quadstone and Save the Children were involved in a port/starboard
collision. Both boats are still in Wellington.
Today's BT Challenge Update:
Leader: Spirit of Hong Kong by 4 miles
Best 24 Hour Run: Team Spirit 245 miles
Position: Sailing in the Tasman sea this short leg is over 1/3rd
Current Weather: South Force 4
Weather Forecast: Light SW
Cam Gram Quote
Team Adventure skipper Cam Lewis is not just a world class sailor
he's also one of the best sailing writers around. He's writes daily reports/Cam-Grams from his Race Class cat. Here's an excerpt from today's:
"So we leave in northeast winds and sail due south keeping the wind just aft of our port beam, which is our fastest point of sail. Doing 25 knots in 16 knots of wind, we fly along until the wind starts to back into the north and then the northwest. This is a good example of how our great speeds change the strategy of routing. If we were in a normal sailboat going eight or ten knots, we would not be able to get south of the high quickly enough as it moved east and would instead had to have sailed on the wind across the top of the high (circulation of a high pressure system is counter-clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere). Since we sail at nearly the speed of the weather systems (sometimes faster), we could slingshot around the bottom of the high, picking up speed as we get into the northwest and then westerly flow. We sail about 30 per cent more distance but at more than twice the speed that we would have if we sailed upwind across the top of the high, or through the center where there is little wind. The speed really changes the way we think. It feels a little like the guys in Apollo 13 who continued away from earth to round the moon because it was the fastest way home."