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Jules Verne Trophy Attempt via Banque Populaire

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  • Single Hander
    Damn, another blow out. Just goes to show how tough these records and around the world adventures really are.

    V50 restarts in a few hours!

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  • PD Staff
    It's Over: Banque Populaire Throws in The Towell

    Saturday, 5 February 2011Heading Home...
    Day14.3 'Heading Home' 45S 01E

    Hi everyone

    As you might have heard by now, we have turned our bows away from Cape Horn, and back towards Lorient, the boat’s home port.

    Pascal took the decision this morning after speaking to all the team yesterday to get their views, and of course the sponsors, has decided to try for the Jules Verne Trophy another time. With only half a daggerboard we were only remotely likely to get the record, performance wise but also there was the added risk of the repair not working at 40 knots of boatspeed, and the rudder in the central hull being more exposed..

    Everyone on board realises that it was the only sensible option. We tried really hard to keep going after the accident, but some things are just not going to happen in the way that you want them to. The good thing about the Jules Verne Trophy is that it can happen when you want, its not like the Vendee that occurs once every 4 years. The team are already planning improvements, ready for the next try.

    A 33 percent success ratio is the historical norm for this record, backed up by Groupama having 2 failed attempts before finally getting the record last year. It is par for the course..

    It has been a real privilege to sail with this team, I have enjoyed every second, and now there is an equal distance to get home, so I am sure we will learn more in the next thousands of miles. Spirits are good, obviously its everyone's dream to get this record, but there will be another chance. The boat is fast and safe and the crew are excellent, its just a matter of time and energy and the goal will be achieved.

    Its been great that so many of you have been following this adventure, and special thanks to all those who sent messges; they were much appreciated here.

    I am going to continue to write some reports to keep everyone up to date. But thanks for watching so far!

    Latest news is that work will continue into a second night on the daggerboard and we should be reinstalling it tomorrow morning, just as the wind increases. Our speed is limited to 13 knots at present to protect the now empty daggerboard case, but for the last 24 hours we have dreamed of doing 13 knots!

    An albatross was circling the boat all afternoon in the rolling swell and light winds; what an incredible sight; wingtips just sliding over the swell with 10mm to spare. Going upwind with us without once flapping those long thin wings: What a goodbye from the south…

    Brian Thompson Sailing

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  • PD Staff
    Stan Honey Breaks Down the Round The World How To

    Kimball Livingston educates us via San Francisco Bay's own Stan Honey on how to get some sweetness out of the Southern Ocean:

    Stan Honey navigated Franck Cammas’ 105-foot Groupama 3 to a 48-day circumnavigation that shaved two days off the previous record held by Orange II, Bruno Peyron’s 121-foot catamaran that by comparison was built for stout, to perform in extreme conditions. But those extremes, on average, represent only twenty percent of the measured 26,000 miles of a record-course circumnavigation. Orange II struggled in two transits of the temperate zones. Thus the new strategy. Honey says that Pascal Bidegorry’s Banque Populaire V, “Is conceptually like Groupama 3 but 30 feet longer, with the same beam—I think because they didn’t need more stability—with more displacement and as much sail as an Orange II.

    Groupama, the giant trimaran that holds the round-the-world sailing record, with the speed to hop from weather system to weather system, and the even larger Banque Populaire, the suddenly crippled maxitrimaran that is out there now trying to beat that record . . .

    “ Maxi Trimarans are fragile,” says Stan Honey. “The premise is to build a china cup that is extraordinarily fast in flat water and 25 knots of breeze. You use the boat’s speed to seek out those conditions and sail in those conditions. When you have to deal with difficult weather, the object is to not break the boat. The trickiest part of a circumnavigation then is Cape Horn, because you can’t skip north to dodge storms, and you won’t skip south. No matter what, you gotta go to Cape Horn. Your only flexibility is to slow down.”

    Banque Populaire in its outbound, north-south transit of the Atlantic had been sometimes ahead, sometimes behind the time of Groupama 3, but at last report had collided with something in the water while sailing at 37 knots. The incident happened in the predawn darkness Thursday. The crew diverted north, for calmer wind and water, where they were able to extract a damaged daggerboard from its housing. The daggerboard is missing a huge chunk, and the continuation of the voyage now depends upon whether or not the crew can effect a sufficient repair. At a minimum, the daggerboard must be re-sealed, or it will continue to delaminate.....

    Outbound, once you get down the Atlantic to the Southern Ocean,” Stan Honey says, “the only reason these boats can’t ride a single storm all the way around, from there to the Horn, is that eventually the storm sinks too far south. Then you have to unhook and catch the next storm. In the Southern Hemisphere, the northwesterlies are the equivalent of the southwesterlies in the northern hemisphere. You feel the cold front coming, building breeze, building rapidly in beautiful, flat-water conditions—the waves haven’t built up yet—and every bone, every nerve in your body, every hair on the back of your head is telling you that you’re about to get creamed. But the boat can sail as fast as the storm. You stay right there, going fast, in flat water ahead of the storm, and your body keeps on warning you that you’re about to get creamed, and it goes on for days.”

    You can read Kimball's full piece here:

    Just Click Here Already!

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  • PD Staff
    After hitting a UFO in the night between Wednesday and Thursday, Pascal Bidégorry and his men put in their way North to find conditions of wind and sea allowing them to drift out of its wells to evaluate the extent of damage. The operation took about three hours showed that the impact tore 2m20 part submerged and confirmed the disappearance of the crash box. Brought on deck, the drift is currently the subject of much attention of the crew of Maxi Banque Populaire V , which implements all the means available on board to try to resume normal walking on the Jules Verne Trophy.

    Reached by telephone in late morning, Pascal Bidégorry came back on the transaction:

    "We arrived at night on an area allowing us to drift out without too much difficulty. The manipulation took us nearly three hours when we got to the cape. Emmanuel Le Borgne has "benefited" to dive under the Maxi Banque Populaire V to assess possible damage to the rudder and hull bottom. On this point there is nothing serious. Once adrift on the deck, we found that in missing a piece of about 2m20. The shock was so intense that he broke the outright bar structural drift. Currently, we are trying to cut the end reduced to shreds but with the tools we have, the thing n is not simple at all. We go to the hacksaw and drill. Once cut, we will study the possibility of stratification. Our goal is to close the lower part of the fin to make it waterproof. Otherwise, with the speed, it would continue to delaminate.

    A lot of work in perspective that a priori should take 24 hours during which the Maxi Banque Populaire will be forced into a reduced mode.

    "We sail in Solent with 6 knots of wind and what is certain is that all this does not help us save time! We hope to put the gennaker fast enough but for now we need to calibrate the drift. We will do everything to go after our approach. We will move forward hour by hour trying to revive a constructive history Maxi Banque Populaire V with the Jules Verne Trophy . We will take the appropriate decision once we have tried everything to regain our progress around the world in normal navigation and safety. But for now, and we continue to face events, I tell myself that I am very fortunate to sail with a highly secured who does not hesitate to go up the innings in adversity! ".

    So these are difficult times that lie ahead for Pascal Bidégorry and his men who keep all the determination, however, they are known to continue their success story. At sea, the activity looks intense, but in this thirteenth day of racing, the Maxi Banque Populaire V still has 195 miles ahead of the timetable. The race against time continues.

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  • Photoboy
    Just in:

    "Sailing at 37 knots, the giant trimaran Banque Populaire V hit floating debris and damaged the crash box protecting the retractable keel. It looks like the dagger board is missing a 40" piece. After initial inspection, the crew decided to sail at reduced speed (25kts) towards calmer waters to evaluate the full extent of the damage."

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  • PD Staff
    Banque Populaire Gains On Groupama's Record

    The maxi tri has been making great progress and putting mile on the current record, now some 415 miles ahead of Groupama's record of last year.

    Brian Thompson provides some insight in english from his blog

    1830 2nd Feb 43S 26W

    Incredible what a difference 24 hours can make when you are doing 700 miles a day!

    From shorts and no t-shirt at night, to looking for that second layer of thermals in the daytime.
    From flying fish to albatross.
    From teasing out every .25 of a knot of speed to get 20 knots in flat water, to sailing in defensive mode, de-tuning the boat and driving cautiously to keep the speed below 38 knots!

    Its now in the early 30 knots of windspeed and we are broad reaching with 3 reefs and the staysail, still with plenty of power to do a steady 35 knots of boatspeed.

    Although we entered the Roaring Forties this morning its still sunny with clear visibility and a single set of waves. So great conditions and a few albatross have come for a distant inspection of the boat.

    It was great to see the excitement of some of the guys…. Thierry Chabignet and Erwan Tabarly, both top Figaro sailors, (Erwan is the nephew or Eric Tabarly), were sitting together and enjoying their first sailing in the South, something they have probably both read about and dreamed about since they were kids sailing in Brittany.

    Its certainly a good start to our Southern adventure, which is the real meat in the sandwich of this Trophee Jules Verne for giant multihulls.

    We are on the Southern Ocean Express, though unfortunately there are engineering works ahead with a high pressure in our route. We are going to have to find a way around that barrier and Pascal, Juan and Marcel on the shore are working on the options, as the weather forecasts evolve. But right now its full steam ahead, and its a nice bonus, if perhaps a temporary one, to be getting ahead of Groupama's position again.

    Just about to serve up dinner, Norwegian Chowder, should be just right served with the last loaf of fresh bread, specially double baked for us by a baker in Lorient, which has been delicious. Its vacumn packed slice white from tomorrow - cannot be on a French boat without du pain!

    That’s all for now


    Posted by Brian Thompson Sailing at 13

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  • Charlie Tuna

    Awesome to witness. USA 17 in 25-35 knots is going to be crazy fun!

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  • Old Codger
    I think the record for 24 hours is 780 odd miles, so 717 is nibbling at that. When you consider that it's the first 24 hours out and there are always little things to get sorted, pretty damned good!

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  • PD Staff
    started a topic Jules Verne Trophy Attempt via Banque Populaire

    Jules Verne Trophy Attempt via Banque Populaire

    Video from day 1

    The might trimaran departed Saturday and managed to gobble up 717 NM in her 1st 24