On Saturday, Wizard, the canting keel VO70 that won the 2011-’12 Volvo Ocean Race as Groupama 4, hooked onto a low-pressure system delivering strong southerly winds between 25 and 40 knots, and took off like a bat out of hades.
Wizard put up a 24-hour run of 492 nautical miles between 1230 UTC from Sunday to today. At today’s 1400 UTC position report Wizard had 1,196 nautical miles to the finish in Cowes, Isle of Wight, England.
“We’ve had an awesome past few days,” said navigator Will Oxley. “We’ve been staying on the low. It’s been quite wet and squally. We sailed a conservative plan for a day or two, but now we’re going to back to full noise. The breeze is down to 20 knots and there aren’t any squalls, so we’re able to use the full sail plan.”
This year’s race across The Pond has been so uncharacteristic that the 120 sailors will be forgiven for feeling like they’re a school of minnows. Instead of southwesterlies pushing them along from behind, the fleet has spent an inordinate amount of time pounding upwind.
“It’s been pretty much all upwind until the wee hours of this morning,” said Carina navigator Gary Grant. “The forecast is a bit different from what we expected. This morning we thought the wind would back from the east to the northwest before dying and then filling in from the southwest. Instead, it’s been veering from the east around to the southwest. Whichever way the wind gets here, fine. We just hope to hold the southwesterly to clear the ice zone.”
At today’s 1630 UTC position report, Rives Potts’ Carina was 284 nautical miles from waypoint A3, the southeastern corner of the ice zone limit. Grant said that Carina and the J/52 True, co-skippered by Howard Hodgson and Ryan Hughes, have been crossing paths all race. He also mentioned that Mark Stevens’ Kiva has been in the mix, although it has fallen slightly farther astern in the past day.
Blogs from the Boats
- Yacht Club Trophy - Two-Boat Teams
- 2019 Results
- Finish Photo Gallery
- SHK Scallywag finish photos
- Wind Conditions Enroute
- Photo Galleries
- Tracking & Media Information Sheet
- TR2019 Sat Phone List
- TR2019 Competitor Bulletin #5
- Final Sailing Instructions
- Scratch Sheet
- Yacht Club Trophy Entry List
- Social Ticket Reservation Form
- Notice of Race Incorporating Amendements 1 & 2