Day 08, Saturday April 17, 1999

ZapadNizkyDarkLong.jpg (30347 bytes)
Photo Richard Konkolski

As promised, the crew at Hall Spars delivered the finished mast in exactly 30 hours. The mast should have been in Punta del Este by last evening. However, the small convoy that was trucking the stick from Montevideo to Punta del Este was ordered off the highway last night when driving conditions became treacherous. They could get back on the road at first light in the morning. The estimated time of departure has been pushed back by at least 24 hours. Finally the new aluminum rig has arrived at the dock around 6 p.m.

Then a cold front, moving through Punta del Este, carrying winds of 35 knots and heavy rain, stopped the installation process since the team did not want to risk stepping the mast in the boat in such conditions.

At 2200 GMT Giovanni Soldini had 4,469 miles to go to the Charleston finish line, and was making 8.9 knots. Second-placed Marc Thiercelin, who trailed Soldini by 66 miles was getting more behind with only 8.3 knots.

Soldini's Fila Photo Marek Slodownik  MSFilaBack.jpg (15114 bytes)

In Class II, 2200 GMT, Mike Garside was 4,537 miles from Charleston and 21 miles in front of J.P. Mouligne. The rest of the fleet sailed in the following order: Viktor Yazykov, Neal Petersen, Minoru Saito and Neil Hunter.

Michael Garside had a tough night as he reported: "Last night was a night of near disaster. In brief, the pilot went askew, I dived out of bed with bare feet (all shoes sodden and I wanted to dry them off just for once) slipped and gashed my big toe. It's unbelievable how far blood goes with a bit of sea water. It was slopping about. Just about to carry out first aid when I realized the boat was not responding to the helm correction. I dived into back of the boat to discover the pintle securing the tie rod to the two quadrants had sheared off. Amazingly I found an extension bar to the socket set with a top half that fitted the big hole in the tie bar and bottom half that fitted the small hole in the quadrant. I jammed it in the two holes and lashed the whole lot together with vectran. I took one mile off J-P in the six hours this was all going on -- my concentration must be improving!"

FolMagelanAlphaAir2.jpg (21616 bytes) Garside's Magellan Alpha

Jean-Pierre Mouligne was more fortunate: "It is a spectacular sunrise here off the Brazilian coast. To the East, filtered through the clouds, the sun is rising with shades of pink and yellow. It is warm and the water has the beautiful blue color of the tropics. Every morning I start my day by doing a quick visual inspection of the deck, check the sail for wear and tear plot my position on the chart and throw back in the water the few unfortunate flying fish that have landed in the cockpit during the night. I then start the engine to charge the batteries and write this report. The bad news is that I am still hard on the wind. With one reef in the main in 25 knots of apparent wind the ride is uncomfortable and wet. Every few minutes Cray Valley takes a hard knock and I wonder how the wind instruments on top of the mast can survive. Mike Garside is still ahead of me, he is sailing well and fast and I am not sure what ‘devious frog’ trick I can do to pass him at the moment but we have a long way to go..."

zapad6.jpg (15676 bytes)
Photo Richard Konkolski

Positions:

Class 1

Place Skipper Boat Latitude Longitude Dist. to go Speed Dist. to first Time
1 Soldini Fila 21 17S 036 32W 4469 8.9 0 2140
2 Thiercelin Somewhere 22 41S 034 46W 4535 8.3 65.8 2140

Class 2

Place Skipper Boat Latitude Longitude Dist. to go Speed Dist. to first Time
1 Garside Magellan Alpha 22 18S 037 08W 4537 8.4 0 2144
2 Mouligne Cray Valley 22 49S 036 31W 4558 6.6 21.1 2144
3 Yazykov Wind of Change 23 18S 040 33W 4658 10.9 121.7 2144
4 Petersen No Barriers 25 19S 044 08W 4865 6.6 328 2144
5 Saito Shuten-dohji II 26 19S 042 45W 4874 8.4 337.3 2144
6 Hunter Paladin II 27 39S 043 29W 4963 6.2 426.4 2144
7 Van Liew Balance Bar 34 57S 054 57W 5668 0 1131.8 2144

Copyright Richard Konkolski
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