Day 30, Sunday March 7, 1999

BBMouligne.jpg (21493 bytes)
J.P. Mouligne Photo Billy Black

At 1416 Greenwich Mean Time (11:16 a.m. local time), Mouligne crossed the finish line for the third consecutive leg with a time of 29 days, 15 hour, 16 minutes and 34 seconds. Some 50 miles off the coast his autopilot had failed and he was forced to hand steer for the final part of leg 3. He had a close-hauled beat in a fresh northerly that required countless tacks. At the finish he looked very tired.

MFMouligneFace.jpg (17829 bytes) J.P. Mouligne Photo Marek Slodownik

"It was just a nightmare," he said. "I worked so hard. I was really afraid that Mike was going to catch up to me. He was so close to me at one point. It was a very tough leg." When Mouligne finished, Mike Garside was a just over 100 miles from the finish line and was expected to finish late evening or early tomorrow.

BBCrayValleyTrimmed.jpg (23895 bytes)   FolMagelanAlphaAir4.jpg (16741 bytes)
Cray Valley & Magellan Alpha

According to Mouligne there was now little if any difference between his and Mike's boat with their performance virtually the same. Garside was getting very good and it was becoming harder and harder for Mouligne to beat him.

In the meantime, some 6,000 miles away, Robin Davies finally cast his lines off and joined his fellow sailors in the Southern Ocean. Davie retired from the Around Alone race for not meeting the Leg 2 arrival deadline in Auckland. Now he joined Russian adventurer Fedor Konioukhov, who had a one-month head start on him. Both decided to sail to Punta even if they were now considered to be out of the competition. Davie would like to make the prize giving ceremony on the 29th of May in Charleston.

BBSouthCarolina.jpg (22418 bytes) Davie's South Carolina Photo Billy Black

It could take him a minimum of three weeks to get to Cape Horn, which would put him there just at the beginning of April. The storm systems tend to be more violent further into the season. Robin could see more severe weather pattern and more dramatic changes in the weather than the competitors.

MSSomewhere.jpg (24606 bytes) Thiercelin's Somewhere Photo Marek Slodownik

Meanwhile, Thiercelin announced that he would leave Port Stanley, Falkland Islands later tonight, 7th of March, to complete Leg 3. His new aluminum mast was much shorter than the original 25.5 meter high carbon fiber one. RAF shipping conditions allowed only 18 meter long piece. Because of that, Thiercelin got stuck with just two sails, until he would arrive in Punta del Este. Then he could find out if his new smaller 18 meter was just a quick fix or if his sponsor would be able to get a new carbon fiber spar for the final leg.

About 1,000 miles further back, Neal Petersen happily reported: "With Cape Horn 823 miles to go conditions have been light. It has been 24 hours that I have been sailing with a full mainsail and genoa. The winds are constantly shifting as the barometer rises for a few hours, then falls a bit and rises again. The swell throws us all over the place. There is blue sky with clouds, some of the clouds light and fluffy like dancing ballerinas… …I was able to close the gap with Minoru on Shuten Dohji to 150 miles last night."

VlnaTop.jpg (23387 bytes)
Photo Richard Konkolski

Positions:

Class 1

Place

Skipper

Boat

Latitude

Longitude

Dist. to go

Speed

Dist. to first

Time

1

Soldini

Fila

Punta

del Este

0

0

0

0

2

Thiercelin

Somewhere

Falkland

Islands

1011

0

1011

1540

3

Autissier

PRB

Rescued

by

Soldini

0

0

0

4

Hall

Gartmore

Retiring

to

Chatham Is.

0

0

0

Class 2

Place

Skipper

Boat

Latitude

Longitude

Dist. to go

Speed

Dist. to first

Time

1

Mouligne

Cray Valley

Punta

del Este

0

0

0

0

2

Garside

Magellan Alpha

35 27S

55 24W

37

8.5

37.3

2144

3

Van Liew

Balance Bar

36 25S

55 30W

91

8.1

90.8

2144

4

Yazykov

Wind of Change

42 26S

57 39W

466

9.6

465.8

2144

5

Saito

Shuten-dohji II

53 35S

86 14W

2018

6.4

2018.1

2144

6

Petersen

No Bariers

50 59S

88 57W

2172

7.3

2172.3

2144

7

Hunter

Paladin II

47 44S

106 41W

2867

6.3

2866.9

2144

Copyright Richard Konkolski
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