Mini Transat - Douarnenez to Pointe-a-Pitre, The battle of the Atlantic
The winner is expected to arrive around 18.30 local time (00.30 GMT)
A little more than ten miles separate Benoît Marie and Giancarlo Pedote
As the finish looms for Benoît Marie (benoitmarie.com) and Giancarlo Pedote (Prysmian), Guadeloupe dons her charming finery to create a welcome worthy of the two men who have been racing the battle of the Atlantic. Behind them we will have to wait twenty hours to see who steps into the final podium position.
Every morning at 9am GMT, the Race Director uses the BLU system to transmit a complete weather report followed the daily ranking to the fleet. No position data is given for each vessel, only the distance still to go to the finish. In yesterday's ranking, Saturday 30 November, Giancarlo Pedote (Prysmian) knew he possessed a thirty mile buffer on his immediate opponent Benoît Marie (benoitmarie.com). In this morning's ranking he could hear the voice of Denis Hughes, the Race Director, telling him he had dropped to second, ten miles behind his opponent. We can only presume that the Italian navigator suffered a technical problem and knew that the gap would be reduced. But no doubt he hoped to keep a small leeway. The announcement of the ranking had to be psychologically hard to take for Giancarlo after leading the fleet almost continuously since the departure from Sada. Being overtaken on the final straight is without doubt one of the worst things for a competitor. However, one can easily imagine the divine surprise for Benoît Marie. Always on the attack since the start of the race, Benoît little expected such a feast and has, no doubt, an extra spring in his step following the announcement of the ranking. Now he needs to harness this new motivation to the finish line.
Photo taken from the PSP Cormoran during the abandoned first leg from
Douarnenez to Sada. Credit Jacques Vapillon / Mini Transat 2013
Rémi Fermin is resisting
Still the battle for third place is fierce, the skipper of Boreal refuses to seed to the attacks of Bertrand Delesne (TeamWork Proto) and Bruno Garcia (Sampaquita). The Mediterranean skipper wanted to take revenge on the Mini Transat after a dismasting ruined his hopes of placing in the last edition.
In the series boats, Aymeric Belloir (Tout le Monde Chante contre le Cancer) continues to lead Justine Mettraux (TeamWork) and Simon Koster (Go 4 It). The third ranked prototype should cross the line tomorrow afternoon (local time).
Trade winds "light"
For the bulk of the fleet, this should be the final few hours of hassle. The stormy depression which seriously disrupted the Minis parade to Guadeloupe is gradually draining away to the north-east, giving way to a regime of winds which are is still light for the trades. But at least it means that, little by little, the fleet will return to downwind sailing, heading for the Caribbean. Whatever comes their way they will grab with both hands.
Cegelec / Eurovia Ranking (prototypes) at 16.00 (GMT +1)
- Benoit Marie (667 – benoitmarie.com) with 71.6 nm to arrival
- Giancarlo Pedote (747 – Prysmian) + 14.9 nm
- Rémi Fermin (741 – Boréal) + 193.5 nm
- Bertrand Delesne (754 – TeamWork Proto) + 237.5 nm
- Bruno Garcia (240 – Sampaquita) + 244.2 nm
Yslab Ranking (series boats) at 16.00 (GMT +1)
- Aymeric Belloir (810 – Tout le Monde chante contre le Cancer) with 459.6 nm to finish
- Justine Mettraux (824 - TeamWork) + 201.8 nm
- Simon Koster (819 – Go 4 it) + 314.4 nm
- Jean-Baptiste Lemaire (607 – Œuvre du Marin Breton) + 573.4 nm
- Renaud Mary (www.runo.fr) + 629.7 nm
Benoit Marie. Crédit Jacques Vapillon / Mini Transat 2013
NOTE TO READERS
The course 2013: returns to its origins
Leg 1 - Douarnenez to Puerto Calero (Lanzarote): 1257 miles.
Leg 2 - Puerto Calero to Pointe-à-Pitre: 2764 miles.
Start from Douarnenez (leg abandoned).
Re-starting Sada (Spain) - Finishing at Pointe-à-Pitre: 3700 miles
Start from Douarnenez originally planned for October 13, 2013 at 13.00. Departure postponed due to severe weather conditions on the race course.
After 16 days of waiting to find a weather window for the fleet of 84 Mini 650s, Douarnenez was able to hold the start of the first leg of the Mini Transat 2013 on Tuesday, October 29 at 9:19. The worsening weather conditions forced the cancellation of this leg and the Mini Transat fleet found shelter in the ports on the north coast of Spain.76 competitors rallied as to the Galician port of Sada where the race to Pointe-a-Pitre was started the morning of Wednesday 13 November at 09.45. A gate is positioned off Lanzarote and competitors who wish to may stop in the Canaries.
Douarnenez Courses: organizer of the Mini Transat 2013 and 2015
All the organisations of Douarnenez are mobilised with the support of local and regional authorities under the aegis of Douarnenez Courses: the yacht clubs, Douarnenez and Société des Régates de Douarnenez, the Winches club organizers for many years of Mini races with the Mini Fastnet and Trophy Marie-Agnès Péron as torchbearers, but also the association of the Fêtes Maritimes, the Atlantic Yacht Club, the Fédération Maritime and others who are preparing for fifteen days prior to departure, a festival celebrating the sea and the sailors. Competitors will be welcomed into the Port-Rhu a real jewel in the heart of the city.