The miles are falling fast as the Ocean Race Europe fleet finds favourable conditions, with a tricky transition ahead.
Since passing the longitude of Cape Finisterre Monday evening the crews have been enjoying straight-line sailing as they head almost directly west towards the turning mark – a virtual waypoint out in the Atlantic.
Thomas Ruyant’s French foiling IMOCA 60 LinkedOut was the first boat to make the final gybe to the west yesterday afternoon, followed almost instantaneously by the US-flagged 11th Hour Racing Team, skippered by Charlie Enright.
As the breeze steadily ramped up this pair were soon ripping westward in close formation, and overnight both crews locked into a nice angle and sea state that, for a couple of hours at least, saw the leading IMOCA boats averaging close to 27 knots of boat speed.
In the VO65 fleet, the Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team from Portugal remains in control of the seven-boat fleet today, with an 11 nautical mile lead over the Dutch-flagged AkzoNobel Ocean Racing, skippered by Chris Nicholson, in second.
Speeds across this fleet of identical boats have remained very even, with all the crews pushing their boats at over 21 knots and just 10 miles separating the top five boats.
With fast reaching conditions forecast to resume on the way back from the Atlantic turning mark the estimated time of arrival in Cascais for the first boats home remains near midday on Wednesday 2 June.
Positions at 09:54 UTC – 1 June 2021
Leg 1 VO65 – Lorient to Cascais – – DTL and Speed Kts
1 Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team 0.00 22.60 kts
2 Sailing Poland 14.75 nm 20.10 kts
3 AkzoNobel Ocean Racing 16.76 nm 21.60 kts
4 Team Childhood I 19.45 nm 18.60 kts
5 AMBERSAIL-2 39.49 nm 20.40 kts
6 Viva México 43.10 nm 19.40 kts
7 The Austrian Ocean Race Project 47.65 nm 20.30 kts
Leg 1 IMOCA – Lorient to Cascais – – DTL and Speed Kts
1 LinkedOut 0.00 nm 25.60 kts
2 11th Hour Racing Team 3.15 nm 25.20 kts
3 CORUM L’ Épargne 60.06 nm 20.80 kts
4 Bureau Vallée 61.21 nm 19.60 kts
5 Offshore Team Germany 96.58 nm 21.30 kts