Day 05, Wednesday September 30, 1998

Isabelle Autissier, Giovanni Soldini, and Mike Golding were virtually deadlocked at the top of Class I, despite the fact that each of them was on a different course line. Soldini was to the north, Golding was sailing the middle track, and Autissier was dropping further to the south, already being the southernmost boat in the fleet.

 FolIsabelleTvar2.jpg (18500 bytes) Isabelle Austissier

Isabelle had emailed: "I have dead calms and frustrating times, making between 2 and 4 knots, and for three hours I was dead in the water. Apparently the weather forecast is a bit unreliable at the moment. Being stuck in these calms is made less unnerving because it is also very beautiful out here. The water is dark violet and completely still, and the sky is full of cottony clouds. I feel as though I am in the middle of nowhere! But it makes me feel better that my companions are not making very good speeds either right now. And the good thing is that in condition like we have, you can lose 100 miles pretty fast."

BBKonioukhovwWifeDeckSmaller.jpg (28003 bytes) Fedor Konioukhov with his wife Foto Billy Black
The Russian entry yacht Modern University for the Humanities, skippered by adventurer Fedor Konioukhov had a tough time. The yacht had been stuck in the Gulf Stream with no wind. Konioukhov found himself far to the south of the rest of the fleet at the time when the only signs of any wind were to be found to the north. The weather forecast gave no promises of any help. A high would move in off Cape Cod the next day, keeping winds light for those at the back of the fleet, like Konioukhov.

MSCrayValleyStart.jpg (13441 bytes) Cray Valley Foto Marek Slodownik

In Class II, Mouligne, Garside, and Van Liew were separated by just forty miles on the distance to Cape Town, still over 6,000 nautical miles away. Mouligne had a very light west-to-southwest wind pushing him along. The sea was flat calm and he was doing 4 to 5 knots. He was running all night with the gennaker, which was safer under autopilot, but he replaced it by big asymmetrical spinnaker that should have given him a little more extra speed as long as he steered the boat. He steered 4 to 5 hours per day in these conditions, and he already felt that he was slowly melting down.

bbbrad.jpg (26381 bytes) Brad Van Liew Foto Billy Black

Third placed Brad Van Liew is not expected to win Class II. His boat is narrow while the others' are beamy. Van Liew is new to the single-handed sailing. His theoretical edge lies in the light, upwind conditions that the fleet was enduring up to now, but he failed to take advantage of it.

The second class was actually divided into three groups. The first was the three leaders - Mouligne, Garside and Van Liew, the second a trio sailing more conservative boats - Saito, Stricker and Davie, all three sailing within twenty miles of each other. Then came the 40-footers sailed by Petersen and Hunter, leaving Viktor Yazykov still in Charleston.

BBShutenDohjiII.jpg (27737 bytes) Shuten-dohji II Foto Billy Black

Positions:

Class 1

Place

Skipper

Boat

Latitude

Longitude

Dist. to go

Speed

Dist. to first

Time

1

Golding

Team Group 4

30 03N

066 16W

6137

7.1

0

1540

2

Soldini

Fila

31 55N

064 55W

6138

7.1

0.7

1540

3

Autissier

PRB

28 59N

067 19W

6149

7

12

1540

4

Thiercelin

Somewhere

29 41N

067 08W

6163

6.8

26.2

1540

5

Hall

Gartmore Inv Mg

31 38N

066 08W

6181

6.6

44.1

1540

6

Reidl

Project Amazon

32 34N

067 47W

6283

5.6

145.9

1540

7

Konioukhov

Mod Univ Human

29 20N

072 28W

6391

4.4

254.3

1540

Class 2

Place

Skipper

Boat

Latitude

Longitude

Dist. to go

Speed

Dist. to first

Time

1

Mouligne

Cray Valley

29 54N

067 38W

6193

6.5

0

1544

2

Garside

Magellan Alpha

29 32N

068 42W

6228

6.2

35.5

1544

3

Van Liew

Balance Bar

29 47N

068 31W

6229

6.1

36

1544

4

Saito

Shuten-dohji II

30 45N

068 37W

6263

5.8

70

1544

5

Stricker

Rapscallion III

30 20N

068 59W

6266

5.8

73.2

1544

6

Davie

South Carolina

31 25N

068 22W

6272

5.7

79.8

1544

7

Petersen

No Barriers

30 39N

069 24W

6294

5.5

101.6

1544

8

Hunter

Paladin II

31 50N

072 59W

6489

3.4

296.2

1544

9

Yazykov

Wind of Change Rus

32 50N

079 56W

6829

0

636.4

1544

Richard Konkolski
Return back to First Leg