Day 09, Sunday December 13, 1998

VlnaTop.jpg (23387 bytes)
Photo Richard Konkolski

The weather forecast predicted another two days of strong winds for most of the competitors. Then the wind should drop down to average speed of that area, about 25-35 knots. By that time the leaders should be far behind their new waypoint.

FolPRB.jpg (24451 bytes) Autissier's PRB
Isabelle Autissier was still in the leading position with about 100 miles to go to the new mark. She had drastically changed her direction, which caused her to lose average of 20 miles on Soldini, Thiercelin and Golding. Isabelle Autissier wrote: "I am hanging in there and right now am doing better than 20 knots, while remaining constantly on the alert, ready to shorten sail. Everything is going well, and it's a little less cold, since we've gone up in latitude. I again tightened the keel fittings in anticipation of the gale, which is later in arriving than was forecast. It's impossible to repair the ram for the time being, because I've had to come about many times yesterday and the day before."

FolTeamGroupDrawing.jpg (20985 bytes) Team group 4
Mike Golding had another hair-raising experience: "I thought I would make an extra effort to push north towards the waypoint. So I unfurled the Genoa in quite a bit of breeze. The pilot seemed to struggle a bit and I made a near fatal mistake - I took the helm to see if I could get the boat to balance better. Suddenly a succession of waves arrived with a squall and we were off. At first I thought it fun sailing at 26-28kts. Then the fun turned to fear when I realized I was on an unstoppable ride. I could not flinch from the helm to hand control back to the pilot as we were on a huge sea and really travelling. Then Team Group 4 surfed over the wave in front and I was confronted by a near vertical drop. She accelerated (from 26kts) and the helm locked as the rudder seemed to stall out with a huge rooster tail from the back. I actually bent the tiller trying to keep her pointing down the wave but there was no way! Last glance before diving for cover the B&G was showing 30kts and rising fast. A split second later and she hit the bottom of the wave, a veritable wall of water which engulfed the boat from stem to stern then threw the boat side on causing an instant gybe and knock down. I thought my race was over when the boat slewed and crashed at this speed. But after around 30 minutes I was up again sans genoa and feeling a little foolish. As Finot said "the boat can do more than 30 but you cannot" -- he was right."

FolGartmoreFrontAir.jpg (20180 bytes) Gartmore Investmen Management

Josh Hall fell another 100 miles behind Isabelle. He was still in Class I's fifth place, but was already passed by two smaller Class II boats, Magellan Alpha yesterday and Cray Valley today. Josh was over 520 miles behind his class leader.

BBWindofChangeNarrow.jpg (18480 bytes)
Wind of Change Russia Photo Billy Black
After loosing 8 miles to Mouligne, Garside was at the top of Class II with a lead of over 60 miles. Surprisingly Yazykov gained 31 miles on Garside, but he was 320 miles back with his much smaller boat. To his merit, it is necessary to say that the next boat was 600 miles back.

BBRapscallionIIIBow.jpg (25937 bytes) Stricker's Rapscallion III Photo Billy Black
George Stricker set out from Cape Town yesterday after fixing a diesel fuel leak. It was Stricker's third departure from South Africa. Only Robin Davie remained in port. Davie was hoping to leave on Tuesday.

Zapad2.jpg (13918 bytes)
Photo Richard Konkolski

Positions:

Class 1

Place

Skipper

Boat

Latitude

Longitude

Dist. to go

Speed

Dist. to first

Time

1

Autissier

PRB

45 54S

070 40E

4661

12.4

0

2140

2

Soldini

Fila

45 26S

070 10E

4690

16.3

29

2140

3

Thiercelin

Somewhere

45 17S

069 59E

4701

15.8

39.7

2140

4

Golding

Team Group 4

45 49S

068 50E

4736

14.2

74.6

2140

5

Hall

Gartmore

45 57S

057 15E

5183

10.9

521.5

2140

6

Konioukhov

Mod.Univ.Human.

40 17S

021 22E

6694

7

2032.7

2140

Class 2

Place

Skipper

Boat

Latitude

Longitude

Dist. to go

Speed

Dist. to first

Time

1

Garside

Magellan Alpha

46 46S

058 49E

5104

11.5

0

2144

2

Mouligne

Cray Valley

46 21S

057 27E

5165

12.1

61.6

2144

3

Van Liew

Balance Bar

47 28S

051 20E

5365

11.3

263.6

2144

4

Yazykov

Wind of Change

47 06S

050 03E

5424

10.3

320.2

2144

5

Petersen

No Barriers

44 02S

035 59E

6030

7.5

925.8

2144

6

Saito

Shuten-dohji II

45 02S

033 23E

6095

7.8

991.2

2144

7

Hunter

Paladin II

42 45S

032 40E

6193

6.9

1089

2144

8

Stricker

Rapscallion III

35 58S

018 22E

6966

4

1862.3

2144

9

Davie

South Carolina

33 54S

018 25E

7042

0

1938

2144

Copyright Richard Konkolski
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