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2022 Route Du Rhum: The Largest Gathering To Date!

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  • 2022 Route Du Rhum: The Largest Gathering To Date!

    The Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe which starts on Sunday from Saint Malo is set to see a record 138 boats spread across six classes, Ultim 32/23, IMOCA, Ocean Fifty, Class40, Rhum Multi, Rhum Mono. They will set off on Sunday November 6 at 1:02 p.m local time on a course of 3,542 miles (6,500 km) to Pointe-?-Pitre in Guadeloupe.

    Rarely has the Route du Rhum –Destination Guadeloupe had so many contenders for victory and podium positions. Here is a quick guide to the key contenders

    Ultim 32/23: Veteran Frances Joyon is looking to defend his title on an Ultim which has won the race three times in succession but in light of the strength of the new flying, foiling Ultims it seems unlikely Maxi Edmond de Rothschild is the logical favourite after dominating all the key races for the last three years. The Verdier design is highly optimised and Volvo Ocean Race winning skipper Charles Caudrelier knows his craft perfectly.

    "The boat no longer has the advance that it had in 2018 but we continued to develop it and the new foils are a success. I'm confident." Says Caudrelier.
    But there are three strong rivals in Armel Le Cleac'h (Maxi Banque Populaire XI) who capsized four years ago on his previous Ultim and had to be rescued. He has a very fast allrounder of a boat and it has shown great potential. And Le Cleac’h is keen to add the missing title to his CV. Thomas Coville (Sodebo Ultim 3) saw his last two Rhums severely compromised but his boat is a little off the pace compared to the newer ones, but he too is comfortable pressing a boat he, too, knows very well. And Fran?ois Gabart came so close in 2018, being eclipsed in the final miles by Joyon who won by seven minutes after seven days of racing. Gabart might feel stressed as his daggerboard was damaged on the delivery to Saint Malo. But he is a wily, smart, fast competitor who wants to win and has a boat to deliver that victory.

    Ocean Fifty: an open fleet
    No one in Saint Malo wants to be considered favourite. It’s like the poison chalice. The smart money in France is on Brit Sam Goodchild and his well proven Leyton, “Of course I have the potential to win, I did everything to be here in the best possible condition, but I'm not the only one.” He says, “Armel (Tripon) won four years ago, Erwan (Le Roux) won in 2014 and he has a new boat that goes fast, Thibaut (Vauchel Camus) knows his boat by heart and he is not afraid, S?bastien (Rogues) won the Transat Jacques Vabre 2021 and it was he who set the pace for the Dhream cup, Eric (Peron) has a great boat of breeze and Quentin (Vlamynck) is the winner of the Pro Sailing Tour this year…” assesses Goodchild sagely.

    IMOCA: 38 boats, three levels
    There are seven new boats launched in 2022: Kevin Escoffier (Holcim - PRB), Maxime Sorel (V and B - Monbana - Mayenne), Jeremie Beyou (Charal), Boris Herrmann (Malizia – Seaexplorer), Sam Davies (Initiatives- Couer), Yannick Bestaven (Maitre- CoQ V) and Paul Meilhat (Biotherm). But though their boats have great potential most observers consider they are too young and unproven to be really pushed hard by their skippers for whom this race is mostly a learning mission.

    “In my opinion, Charlie Dalin and Thomas Ruyant are in the best position with their super well proven very reliable IMOCAs. Especially Dalin who won everything this year and who even beat fully crewed boats (on the Azimut Challenge, editor's note). It's beautiful to see.” Says Germany’s Boris Herrmann,” There is a risk that not all new boats will finish into Guadeloupe because of teething problems. I really don't want to be part of the battle but want to get there. The weather is not looking easy, it is going to be a real adventure.”
    Jerermie Beyou (Charal) and Louis Burton (Bureau Vall?e) are tipped as potential podium finishers.

    Class40: Open season
    There are 55 Class40s and the podium has never been so open. There are ten possible winners "But there are so many outsiders around that anything is possible. It's a pity that betting is not allowed," points out Halvard Mabire, the president of the class. There are now no fewer than 30 scows in the fleet. “Two-thirds of the very many new boats are sailed by very, very talented skippers.” confirms Antoine Carpentier (Redman). Last edition’s winner Yoann Richomme (Paprec Arkea), stresses that "the parameters that have to be taken into account are so numerous that there is no magic formula to decide who the top contenders might be,”

    A double winner of the La Solitaire du Figaro, Richomme is in pole position to defend his title but has a bunch of ex Figarists armed with great boats that he will have to contend with. Among them Xavier Macaire (Groupe SNEF) and Corentin Douguet (Queguiner-Innoveo). There are also 23 sailors who cut their teeth in the Mini650 including Ian Lipinski (Credit Mutuel), Luke Berry (Lamotte – Creation Module), Ambrogio Beccaria (AllaGrande Pirelli), Axel Trehin (Project Rescue Ocean), Am?lie Grassi (La Boulang?re Bio).
    Read also about ski racing legend Ivica Kostelic

    Mono Rum: Jean-Pierre Dick is the favourite
    All eyes will be on Jean-Pierre Dick and his Verdier design (Notre Mediterranean - City of Nice). After four Vendee Globes, two victories in the Barcelona World Race, four in the Transat Jacques Vabre in IMOCA, the Nicois returns here with big ambitions on a race that is missing from his CV

    Rum Multi: An historic re-match between the legends.
    With his famous old Orma 60, Philippe Poupon (Flo) has, on paper, the best of the Rhum Multi fleet. But for this former winner, the primary objective is "to get to the end and tell a great story."
    “Of course I am not the only one to aim for victory,” confirms Marc Guillemot (METAROM MG5). Quite a few skippers arrive with similar boats are in this mix including four Multi50s (Interaction, Trilogik - Dys de Cœur, Rayon Vert, Ille et Vilaine -vers inclusion) should be among the front runners.

    " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella" Photo Gallery

  • #2
    The Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe will start on Wednesday 9th November at 1415hrs

    Condition in the North Eastern Atlantic as of Monday reveal the rational of the postponement!

    Postponed from 1302hrs (local) today (Sunday) due to forecasted stormy winds and huge seas expected in the English Channel, the re-scheduled start for the 12th edition of the Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe - the solo ocean race from Saint Malo to Guadeloupe - will now be on Wednesday 9th November at 1415hrs (local) with favourable weather forecast for the record 138 boat fleet.

    Now, given the new start time, the skippers can plan ahead for the rescheduled start. At 1000hrs this morning (Sunday) at a press conference in Saint-Malo, the organiser OC Sport Pen Duick and the Race Director, Francis Le Goff officially announced that the 12th edition would start on Wednesday afternoon at 1415hrs. “At that point, the weather should be easier to deal with as there will be a 15 knot westerly wind,” explained Le Goff. “The situation will be favourable and allow the boats to make their way out of the English Channel. The forecasts seem very reliable with a probability of more than 90%. The start of the race should be much less hazardous than if the start had gone ahead on Sunday.”

    The skippers taking part will attend a weather briefing on the day before the start. The 38 IMOCAs and eight Ocean Fifty boats will leave the docks in Saint-Malo on Tuesday afternoon (times to be announced). The Class40 and Rhum Mono and Rhum Multi categories will make their way through the locks on Wednesday morning. The arrangements will be similar to those in place on Friday for the Ultim 32/23 with stands in place allowing the public to watch the event.

    As planned, today will be the final day that the Village will be open with closing time at 1700hrs. This will allow visitors to Saint-Malo to come and admire the boats still present in the docks before they race across the Atlantic.

    The organisers made all the modifications to the arrangements in record time, allowing everyone to prolong the excitement leading up the start of the race, thanks to the support of those alongside the organiser, OC Sport Pen Duick, including the Guadeloupe Region, the City of Saint-Malo, the Brittany Region, the CIC bank, national authorities, volunteers from the Bay of Saint-Malo Sailing Club and everyone else involved.

    " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella" Photo Gallery


    • #3
      Delayed Route du Rhum start will be rewarded by favourable conditions but early dynamic decisions will hold the key to winning .

      A record sized armada of 138 solo skippers set to race in six different classes should be blessed with brisk but very manageable wind and sea conditions when the 12th Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe starts Wednesday at 1415hrs off Saint Malo. After waiting for the start rescheduled from Sunday lunchtime due to a big storm which blew through Monday, the reward seems set to be W’ly winds of between 13 and 15kts with a bumpy, choppy sea made difficult by the residual swell of between 1 and 1.5m. There should be some breaks in the cloud maybe with some sunny interludes.

      From the start line to the Cape Frehel gate it will be almost dead upwind. With the massive fleet starting off the same line, maximum concentration and anticipation will be required. After the gate the objective is to get out of the Channel as efficiently and safely as possible, avoiding the no-go areas such as a large wind-farm to the SW of the main westwards course. As they progress towards the tip of Brittany the seas will build to 3 to 4.5 metres. By the end of Wednesday evening the fastest Ultim 32/23s should already be into the Atlantic in a lifting breeze.

      Thereafter the strategic choices are fairly open. The first decision is whether to go south or north of the Ushant traffic separation scheme. As usual the option to head west and north will encounter the toughest conditions through a front set to lie between the Azores and Ireland. The conservative option is going south across the Bay of Biscay, increasingly for the fast foiling boats like the newer IMOCAs and the Multi 50s it is the optimum sea state rather than wind strength which will affect the routing.

      Briton Will Harris, weather specialist and normally co-skipper of Boris Herrmann’s Malizia Seaexplorer, explains their team’s view of the first few days: “It will be much more reasonable. The start will be quite chaotic and then there are four knots of current (against) at Frehel, so that will be tricky. It will be full on. Everyone will need to be extra careful here. Then along the Brittany coast if you can start cleanly then there will be an advantage to get away. The first front will be approached on Thursday evening. Around 200 miles offshore it stops and so rather than it pounding on in it is stopped by a high pressure over Europe. And then front behind it catches up. Then there is a decision where you try and push through it or how much do you skirt around it and get flatter sea states. And so, remember that now we only need 15kts of wind and flatter water and we will be going quicker than if you are in 35kts of wind and 3m waves. After that you have to fight through a messy Azores High which is especially messy on the east side. There is a little low developing there too. And that will all change.

      So the basic premise is get round Ushant pointing west, then re-do your weather strategy there, take a breath and decide. And that could be the big decision that decides the whole race, do you push west, go a bit further south, all depending on what your objectives are. There are three or four features to get through between Ushant and the Azores.”

      IMOCA favourite Charlie Dalin (APIVIA) agrees that the final strategy will need to be decided on the race course rather than before leaving the dock, “There are huge differences in the weather models. It looks highly likely we’ll get at least thirty knots of wind. We know that the trade winds are well established with decent conditions, but for the moment, I don’t know which way I’ll go to get there. I hope the models will become clearer, as otherwise we’re going to have to adapt to the weather once out there and that means spending more time at the nav station. I prefer it when things are clear early on,”

      Sam Goodchild skipper of Leyton, one of the favourites in the Ocean Fifty class concurs, “Going through this front will be a big decider straight off. Our type of boat it is not just like you will go faster in the north, there is a big potential to go faster in the south, it is not just about not being boat breaking. But, otherwise, it still looks like a typical Route du Rhum, we will go upwind there will be big winds and big waves. Just because we avoided the ex-hurricane does not mean it will all be cool and easy. The strategy initially is just about getting through the first bit of bad weather with the boat in one piece, everyone has to decide where you set the limit – how far north do you go, how far south do you go – the same question is there. The full southern route is not open, there is a southerly route which is a little less boat breaking. It is evolving all the time.”

      He adds, “What is worrying is entering the unknown. I’m lucky to have learnt a lot about sailing with some big names on their multihulls, but the time comes when you have to do it for the first time yourself.”
      It’s a relatively straightforward sequence for the Ultim 32/23 even though the 3m swell forecast off Ushant on Wednesday evening and a SW’ly wind will be a point of sail that is not perfect for these giant boats. They should be able to keep up speeds of 25-30 knots, allowing them to reach the front by midday on Thursday. Four years ago, some of these trimarans were too fragile to withstand a battering, but the skippers agree that progress had been made. Upwind in the uncomfortable conditions does play to one of the strengths of favourite Maxi Edmond de Rothschild which has developed a fast, relatively comfortable and controllable upwind mode.

      Once they have dealt with this front that the Ultim multihulls will be able to move further south and look forward to the trade winds. The corridor to reach the edge of the Azores high is however quite narrow. If all goes well, the first boats should pick up the trade winds by Saturday evening.

      Two fronts rather than one for the Ocean Fifty's
      It would appear that the skippers will try to move further south of the theoretical route once they reach the tip of Brittany around midnight on Wednesday, forcing them to tack through the Bay of Biscay. “It’s not going to be easy to find any opportunities” said Armel Tripon after this morning’s briefing, “but there are still possibilities. Once past Brittany, there will be a choice to make between two options.”

      How to watch the start
      Seven of the eight Ultim 32/23 multihulls are already moored up off Dinard, while the IMOCAs will be leaving the dock and passing through the locks between 1605 and 1805hrs today. They will be followed from 1905hrs this evening by four Ocean Fifty boats, while the remaining four Ocean50s, the Ultim Use It Again! By Extia and the Rhum Multi Flo will be the final boats to leave the dock today at 2005hrs (local time).

      Tomorrow morning (Wednesday) the Rhum Multi category will be the first to leave the dock from 0620hrs, followed an hour later by the Rhum Mono and the final three Rhum Multi boats. Finally, the Class40 monohulls will go through the locks at 0820 and 0920hrs.
      The whole fleet will then remain at sea until the start at 1415hrs.
      For spectators ashore, the best vantage points will be on the Grouin headland (the start) and Cape Frehel (the CIC Trophy buoy). For those watching from a boat, zone 3 is free and accessible to all pleasure craft under motor, except jet skis and scooters. We remind you that fishing, swimming, diving and other leisure pursuits are not permitted in this area.

      They said
      Damien Seguin (Groupe Apicil): “The situation is fairly typical of November with upwind sailing in the English Channel, strengthening winds in two fronts allowing us to get to the Azores and then speed towards Guadeloupe. It’s going to be a fast race close to the direct route, but there will be choices to make and we are going to have to weigh up the risks we are willing to take.”

      Alan Roura SUI (Hublot): “Everyone is in a hurry to get going. For the first 24 hours, it should be cool but with a lot of manoeuvres. There’s going to be a tricky phase to deal with on Thursday night, but after that, we’ll be fast. The fastest routes take us north, but it will be very physical. We’ll see who dares to do that. We’re going to have to keep up in the start of the race. I’m up for that!”

      Kojiro Shiraishi JPN (DGM Mori Global One): “I’m pleased to be able to set sail and I want to finish as soon as possible, as my sponsor is waiting for me in Guadeloupe and has to leave soon. I shall try to avoid doing anything too extreme and play it as safe as possible to make sure I get to Guadeloupe. With the team, we agreed that we wanted to be fast, but also look after the boat.”

      Ivica Kostelic CRO (ACI) It is a choice between speed and safety. I am here to be safe I am not out to win this race, but even the guys who would go north are going to think about it twice, thinking what is going to happen on day 5 above the Azores. So I am definitely going to choose the south and looking forwards to racing in the trade winds
      " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella" Photo Gallery


      • #4

        eloi stichelbaut image

        British skipper Sam Goodchild, solo skipper of the Ocean Fifty Leyton, has been injured during the start of the 12th Route du Rhum -Destination Guadeloupe race. As soon as the alert was received CROSS (Centre R?gional Op?rationnel de Surveillance et de Sauvetage maritimes) sent a doctor to the boat. Goodchild is conscious and was being taken care of by the doctor and his injuries are being assessed before being transferred to an SNSM rescue vessel. More information to come.

        " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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        • #5
          Great start conditions for 12th Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe but Goodchild injured, IMOCA duo collide at Cape Fr?hel bouy

          Postponed for three days due to stormy conditions in the English Channel and the Bay of Biscay today’s rescheduled start to the 12th Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe was blessed with near perfect weather conditions as the record sized fleet set sail on the 3542 nautical miles solo Transatlantic race from Saint Malo to Guadeloupe.

          A southwest by westerly wind of 11-15kts, bright sunshine and blue skies produced a picture postcard panorama as the record sized fleet of 138 boats in six classes. Several boats in most classes – including some of the favourites – appeared to have jumped the start gun and crossed the start early but this was being reviewed to be sure who the transgressors were. The standard penalty is four hours.
          During the start phase British solo racer Sam Goodchild, the 32 year old skipper of Leyton, one of the favourites to win the eight boat Ocean Fifty class, was injured and had to be evacuated ashore to hospital in Saint Malo. He was reported to have injuries to his arms and face.

          The 17 miles upwind passage to Cape Frehel saw the class leaders, mostly the pre-race favourites, stretch away in the solid breeze. Charles Caudrelier on the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild was first to break the CIC gate at the Cape much to the delight of the hundreds of spectators, including many camping car dwellers, who had prolonged their stay on the point to see the fleet pass this traditional final milestone before the open Atlantic. Caudrelier broke the gate at 1521hrs local time, Armel Le Cl?ach on Banque Populaire XI some eight minutes later.

          In the 38 strong IMOCA fleet favourite Charlie Dalin was also first to pass Cape Fre'hel, the renowned upwind speed superiority of his fully optimised APIVIA proving key in the early stages of a classic race he has never contested and wants to win as the swansong for his boat on which he has collected almost all the IMOCA class honours in recent years.
          At three hours after the start gun Dalin was being pursued by Saint Malo’s Louis Burton, over 1,5 miles behind on the Manuard designed Bureau Vall?e with Thomas Ruyant (LinkedOut) in third. The first new, 2022 launched boat was J?r?mie Beyou’s Charal II in fourth, threatening Ruyant and going well.

          At the Cape Fre'hel buoy just around 1700hrs there was a collision between Japanese skipper Kojiro Shiraishi (DMG MORI Global One) and Swiss rookie Oliver Heer (Oliver Heer Ocean Racing) both boats suffered damage and this evening were heading back to Saint Malo. Heer’s boat has a damaged bow but both boats will be fully assessed when back in port.

          Ultimes off the a fast lead!

          Ocean 50's in hot pursuit


          Class 40'

          Class 40 Teams were still awaiting final confirmation as to which, if any, boats were over the start line and will therefore have to take the requisite four hour penalty. But again in Class40 it is the favourites who were trading tacks and changing places on the upwind to Cape Fr?hel. Corentin Douguet (Queguiner Innoveo), Am?lie Grassi (La Boulang?re Bio), Xavier Macaire (SNEF Group), Ian Lipinski (Cr?dit Mutuel), Simon Koster (Banque du Leman) point in turn at the head on the road towards the CIC Cap Fr?hel gate. As for the defending champion Yoann Richomme (Arkea Paprec) he was in the leading group but among those to break the start line first. Australia’s Rupert Henry (Eora) was well placed in the top ten on his new build Lombard Lift 40 V2 whilst the USA’s Alex Mehran was 15th on Polka Dot.

          Before leaving Saint Malo the Aussie skipper said, “I am happy with the weather now. It will be a strategic tactical first week. I want to manage the risks carefully, not separate from the fleet and look for the best opportunity to pick up the downwind conditions later on. I have gone OK in the races this season but I kind of feel I have the tiger by the tail. It has been a big learning curve and coming from Australia I did not realise how big and established this class really is, and how experienced and good some of the top campaigners in Class40 actually are. So it has been good. We got a sixth (with Jack Bouttell) in the Channel Race but that was six months ago when the boat was brand new and since then I have done 4 or 5 000 miles. The boat (Lift V2) is very quick, it is the quickest in reaching conditions and good upwind, VMG running is not so good but it is not meant to be.”

          Rhum Multi

          Rhum Mono

          Rhum Mono et Multi: a great opening but two boats returning to Saint-Malo
          From the start, everyone seemed eager to get away. Roland Jourdain (We Explore) and Brieuc Maisonneuve (CMA Ile de France - 60000 rebonds) were the frontrunners among the multihulls. To the North of the start line, Lo?c Escoffier (Lodigroup) got behind Philippe Poupon (Flo) with a cautious start. Jean-Pierre Dick (Notre Mediterran?e - Ville de Nice) one of the favourites in this Route du Rhum - Destination Guadeloupe took the lead from the outset in the monohulls. Catherine Chabaud (Formatives ESI Business School pour Ocean As Common) and Wilfrid Clerton (Cap au Cap Location), with their boats designed for upwind sailing also got off to a good start.

          It will take around four hours for this fleet to sail the twenty miles to Cape Fre'hel. Two boats are returning to Saint-Malo including the boat skippered by Oren Nataf (Rayon Vert) after damage to his mainsail. “The mainsail ripped during a gybe and that means we can’t continue,” said the skipper of Rayon Vert. “We’re trying to find a technical solution and would like to set off again.” Jean-Sebastien Biard (JSB Demenagement) is also returning to Saint-Malo.

          " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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          • #6

            After returning to Saint Malo in the same lock at 2010hrs this evening, the disappointed Ollie Heer (Oliver Heer Ocean Racing) and Kojiro Shiraisihi (DMG MORI Global One) described the incident which occurred just at the Cape Frehel buoy, just over three hours after the start. The most obvious damage to Heer’s IMOCA is the bowsprit and the pulpit whilst DMG MORI has damage to the starboard side which is being assessed tonight.

            Heer said, “I am gutted to say the least. It was a port-starboard incident at the Cape Frehel gate. I was on starboard and Koji on port. I decided that even though I would have made it through the gate but I decided to hitch closer in land to get out of the tide. I tacked over and was a couple of minutes into the tack and was about to pull the windward daggerboard up and there was a massive bang."

            "I was thrown into the pit. I was convinced he had seen me. I was just about to pull up the windward daggerboard. But now there is huge disappointment and frustration we have worked hard to get here. But we have until Saturday to get it repaired. We are optimistic. The biggest damage is the bowsprit, the crash box took most of the impact and we have a minor hole in the port side. We have a lot of people supporting us."

            "I have Pete Hobson who was the designer of Alex Hugo Boss on the way here on the ferry. And we will try everything to get going again. We are optimistic.” On the dock Koji apologised, saying, “We were on the same tack near the mark and he tacked and I did not see him coming. Then buoy was really close and I could not avoid him. The damage is really big but at the moment I am really glad Ollie is fit and healthy.”

            " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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            • #7

              Today at 12pm TU, as it was moving close to 20 knots, Armel heard a crack with no apparent shock. He noticed the drift breaking underneath the hull. Armel makes his way to the technical base of the Maxi Banque Populaire XI in Lorient, which he will join in about ten hours. All solutions will be studied there with the Team Banque Populaire for the continuation of this Rum Route.

              Ronan Lucas, Director of Team Popular Bank:
              "Armel told us about this break that requires him to go back to Lorient so that we can analyze the situation." Armel is safe, the road to our tech base will be in managable conditions. "
              " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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              • #8
                After their first night at sea, the remaining 36 skippers in the IMOCA fleet of the Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe are heading out into the north Atlantic with a complex weather pattern ahead of them and some tricky decisions to make.

                The early stages saw the skippers beating along the Brittany coast into a fresh west-southwesterly air stream with all but one of them – Louis Duc on Fives-Lantana Environment – electing to go inside the Traffic Separation Zone off Ushant. After 20 hours at sea Duc was the leader in the ranking by virtue of being furthest west, but the real action was happening about 110 miles southeast of him.

                That is where the group of fastest boats were clustered led by Charlie Dalin on APIVIA, ahead of Thomas Ruyant on LinkedOut and the Louis Burton on Bureau Vall?e. Also in that group were J?r?mie Beyou on Charal, Kevin Escoffier on Holcim-PRB, Maxime Sorel on V And B-Monbana-Mayenne and Justine Mettraux on Teamwork.

                About 55 miles northwest of them a second much smaller group of boats were taking a more northerly option, though not as extreme as the one chosen by Duc. This echelon was led by the Kiwi skipper Conrad Colman on Imagine, making the most of his excellent start to the race, followed by Benjamin Dutreux on Guyot Environnement-Water Family, Arnaud Boissieres on La Mie C?line and Guirec Soud?e on

                Copyright: Jean-Marie LIOT

                Overall it is already becoming clear that Dalin – who has won every race in the IMOCA division this season and for whom this is his last outing in his current Apivia – has taken the initiative early in this contest, as he so often does, and he will now look to control matters from the front over the next few critical days.

                The game now is all about where and when Dalin and his rivals cross the first frontal system in their pathway to the west and the south – a powerful weather system that stretches from the Azores all the way to the northwest coast of Scotland. How this transition goes could well affect the relative positions of the leading boats and whether Dalin can protect his early advantage.

                ”The main thing is crossing the first front,”confirmed Pierre Le Roy, the winner of the 2021 Mini Transat who is part Dalin’s team and worked with the APIVIA skipper on is meteo preparation for this race. “The main idea is that they will have to choose how far north or south they cross the front because the game is to be able to reach the trade winds as soon as possible. It is not possible to avoid this front, so it is just a matter of timing.”

                The positioning of the boats will determine how strong wind conditions are at the front and the sea state, with the magnitude of both increasing for those skippers positioned further north. “To the north they are going to get some stronger winds and bigger waves as well,” continued le Roy. “But a lot will depend on the timing and the speed of the boats because they will not be able to go as far south or north as they wish, depending on whether they are foiling or in daggerboard configuration.”

                Le Roy says the overall weather picture – with a second front coming in a couple of days and uncertain conditions between the two systems – meant that the Apivia team was not able to define a clear pre-start strategy for Dalin, but focused instead on defining and setting out the various options.

                And so far, Le Roy believes, the APIVIA skipper – bidding to win the Route du Rhum at the first time of asking – has made the right choices, as evidenced by the fact that almost all of the fastest boats in the IMOCA fleet are following him.

                “There was a lot of uncertainly about the weather forecast in the build-up to the start,” explained Le Roy. “Our main work was to define and to work on all the different scenarios and the strategy was to keep our options open and then make sure that Charlie had time at some point to address the strategy on the road. The important thing was to ensure that he could find one or two hours on the first night, or second night, to make sure that he was able to adjust his trajectory to the first front. It was not possible before the start to tell him ‘OK, go this way or that way…’”

                Le Roy says Duc is taking a risk on his own well to the north of everyone else. “Theoretically it could be a very fast route, but the question is are you able to go fast enough to follow the routing and are you able to maintain the boat in good condition?”he said. “It is a very risky route actually, especially going there on your own. But in his situation, he can’t win the race if he just follows the fastest boats, so why not have a go, but I hope he won’t get himself into any trouble.”

                Sadly “trouble” has been encountered by Oliver Heer, in his first big race on Oliver Heer Ocean Racing, and Kojiro Shiraishi on DMG Mori Global One who collided as they were approaching the gate off Cape Fre'hel. Both skippers returned to St Malo where Shiraishi announced his retirement from the race while Heer’s team are working hard to repair his bowsprit and bow to enable him to re-start the race in the next day or so.

                Another skipper who has taken a pit-stop is Rodolphe Sepho on Reve de Large-Region Guadeloupe who stopped for several hours in Roscoff but has now re-joined the race.

                Ed Gorman

                " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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                • #9

                  Into the Route du Rhum race rhythm as first big front is anticipated

                  With the first 24 hours of racing completed and the record sized fleet of solo racers settling into their ocean racing rhythm, the biggest threat to the lead of Charles Caudrelier and the Ultim 32/23 pacemaker Maxi Edmond de Rothschild seems to be a potential judgment that he jumped Sunday’s 1415hrs start gun.
                  With unlucky rival Armel Le Cl?ac’h reporting at midday today that he has a damaged daggerboard and is taking his Maxi Banque Populaire XI to Lorient for analysis – and potentially to fit a spare - favourite Caudrelier was opening the 3542 nautical miles course from Saint Malo to Guadeloupe in confident style. He was around 20 nautical miles further south than Fran?ois Gabart who is progressively winding up his SVR-Lazartigue on which Gabart, 2018’s runner up, is contesting his first ocean race.

                  But Caudrelier’s Gitana team are contesting the call that their Ultim broke the line early. The data from the line marker buoys is updated in real time and is now being analysed against the Gitana team’s positioning software and the tracking.
                  “All of the data has been recovered from the supplier of the beacons and is being compared to the track of the boat,” reported Race Director Francis le Goff, adding “Either the committee considers that they have made a mistake when they sees these elements and the penalty would be cancelled, or the committee will confirm its first judgement and the International Jury will meet to give a decision.”
                  If there is judged to be no penalty required that will be announced this evening. Otherwise a jury hearing is needed and that will require a further 24 hours. If they agree a penalty should be imposed then it must be taken within 48 hours of that decision.
                  The leaders were heading upwind across the Bay of Biscay in freshening breezes ahead of the first big frontal system of the course which is expected tonight. Thomas Coville (Sodebo) looks set to venture further west.

                  Gabart said this morning, “The first night wasn’t easy, fairly technical with quite a few manoeuvres. It was a starry night, so pleasant sailing conditions. I got off to a cautious start with a few mistakes with my trajectory, but in general, there aren’t any surprises with how everyone is performing. Our idea was always to head off west and then south afterwards. I have just changed tack and am sailing upwind in 20 knots. The wind is set to strengthen today and we should cross the front late in the night. The boat is doing well. It’s a bit harder on the port tack in the swell. I think I’m sailing slightly lower than Gitana and sometimes a bit faster than Banque Populaire XI which I was catching. It’s all very close.”

                  In the **IMOCA **fleet the main peloton has been fighting to get south seeking to find the best point to cross the front, at the same not getting too much of a battering in a short, sharp system which could see 40kts plus, but at the same time looking to get good breeze behind it and not drop into the messy edge of the high pressure system. The indomitable Charlie Dalin on APIVIA is sailing to his seeding and was six miles ahead of perennial rival Thomas Ruyant (LinkedOut) but making more than 2.5 to three knots quicker in the upwind conditions. He was also quicker than the new boats J?r?mie Beyou’s Charal 2 and Kevin Escoffier’s Holcim-PRB being around 18-20 miles behind.

                  Kiwi Conrad Colman on the non-foiling Imagine was going well in the early part of the day but as he moved south this afternoon he was crossed by a strong group including wily Seb Marsset (Cap Agir Ensemble) and Eric Bellion (Commeunseulhomme powered by Altavia) both on 2006-7 Farr designs.
                  Colman explained, “ We need to pick a spot which has not too much wind but which does not have a big calm spot behind it. So that is why I am positioning myself a little more to the south now, to try and get through the first front.
                  The first front should be around early morning tomorrow. I feel pretty tired, I am going to get some food and get a sleep. But overall I feel good, happy with the way I am sailing the boat in these quite challenging conditions. I am full of beans, confident. The weather is nothing horrendous, it is quite lumpy and every once in a while the boat slams with a bang when it comes off a wave, the wind is anything from 18 to 26kts of wind and so we are straight upwind, as tight as we can get with this pretty uncomfortable sea state. What makes it tricky is the wind is extremely variable, your trim the boat for 18 knots and then 26 comes in and you are on your side. It is pretty engaging at the moment.”

                  In Saint Malo Kojiro Shiraishi’s team announced the official abandon of their DMG MORI Global One which was damaged in a collision with Swiss rookie Oliver Heer (Oliver Heer Ocean Racing). The DMG MORI shore team have combined forces to help repair the bow and bowsprit of Heer’s IMOCA as they try to get the Swiss skipper back on the race course ‘within two or three days’.

                  **In Class40 **the leading group is compacted to within a couple of miles, all pushing west together today. Defending champion Yoann Richomme had pulled up to 26th from 51st after taking his four hours penalty yesterday evening and night for breaking the start line early on Arkea-Paprec.

                  He explained, “There were a lot of people pushing towards the line and I forgot to look at the chart. So I was a bit caught out like a schoolboy. There was the possibility of doing the penalty at Fr?hel where there wasn’t much wind and a strong current. The idea was to hang around there and then we wouldn’t lose too much ground. It was a good operation after the bad one at the start. I’m sailing upwind and it’s quite rough. The wind got up off Ushant. It’s going to be a long tack westwards for two or three days. It doesn’t look like much fun in the coming days. There are going to be some complicated transitions so I hope to claw my way back into it little by little. It was a wonderful night in the full moon off Northern Brittany.”
                  Italian skipper Ambrogio Beccaria (Allagranda Pirelli) is third at less than two miles behind the leader whilst the USA’s Alex Mehran (Polka Dot) was second, closest to the rhumb line.

                  Ocean Fifty: There are three rookies in the top four Ocean Fifty boats currently taking advantage of decent winds and pleasant conditions for their multihulls. Quentin Vlamynck (Arkema) has not flinched since the start and continues to ward off the attacks from S?bastien Rogues (Primonial) on a Southerly route, while Eric P?ron (Komilfo) is back up to fourth place just behind Erwan Le Roux (Koesio).
                  The 50-foot trimarans are diving south and as Thibaut Vauchel-Camus (Solidaires-En-Pelton – ARSEP) explained, “hoping to cross the front 150-200 miles off Cape Finisterre” to avoid the continental shelf and the effects of the hills along the Spanish coast.

                  **Rhum Mono: **The first night was more comfortable than expected with the Rhum Mono fleet able to make their way out of the English Channel on one tack. This morning they had to choose whether to round the TSS via the North or head South. Wilfrid Clerton (Cap au Cap Location) chose the former option and is likely to encounter rougher conditions than those who went south, but in so doing will make progress westwards. This afternoon he is in second position, while Jean-Pierre Dick still leads this fleet.

                  Rhum Multi: In the Rhum Multi category, Gilles Buekenhout (Jess) has been the big surprise. The Belgian got off to a cautious start, but kept his speed up during the night to take the lead. It is a pleasing situation for the skipper who suffered some serious damage to his Multi40 (designed by Martin Fischer/ Beno?t Cabaret) when he was arriving in Saint-Malo.

                  4 skippers have retired: Sam Goodchild (Leyton – Ocean Fifty) after being injured during the pre-start phase, Kojiro Shiraishi (DMG Mori Global One – IMOCA) following a collision off Cape Fr?hel, Oren Nataf (Rayon Vert – Rhum Multi) with a ripped mainsail, Antoine Magr? (E.Leclerc Ville-La-Grand – Class40) after hitting the rocks off the island of Batz.
                  -11 Pit stops: Maxi Banque Populaire XI (Armel Le Cl?ac’h – Ultim 32/23), Oliver Heer (Oliver Heer Racing – IMOCA), Mikael Mergui (Centrakor – Class40), Pierre-Louis Attwell (Vogue avec un Crohn – Class40), Martin Louchard (Randstad-Ausy – Class40), Jean Galfione (Serenis Consulting – Class40), Sacha Daunar (Cit’H?tel – R?gion Guadeloupe – Class40), Romain Pilliard (Use it Again ! by Extia), Jean-S?bastien Biard (JSB D?m?nagements – Rhum Mono), Etienne Hoched? (Pir2) et Philippe Poupon (Flo – Rhum Multi).
                  " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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                  • #10
                    Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe

                    Request for redress granted to

                    Maxi Edmond de Rothschild

                    ?Friday, November 11, 2022 - Since Wednesday at 14:15 hrs, Charles Caudrelier, deemed to have crossed the start line of the Route du Rhum - Destination Guadeloupe too early, was the subject of a procedure. The latter was lifted last night.

                    ?In the Sailing Instructions for the famous transatlantic race between Saint Malo and Pointe-?-Pitre, early starts incur severe penalties: in the event of the start line being crossed too early, the competitor receives a 4hr time penalty, which must be carried out within 48hrs of the start. This is what Charles Caudrelier was set to incur aboard the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild. However, the good news came in overnight once the jury was able to come together on the other side of the Atlantic.

                    In light of the various elements brought to its attention, namely the position of the Fra 17 Maxi Edmond de Rothschild at the time of the start, the president of the Race Committee has informed Charles that he was not OCS, which effectively means that he was on the right side of the line at the moment the starting gun fired.
                    The decision has been passed on to the boat by Race Management.

                    ? ?
                    Cyril Dardashti, director of Gitana Team, gave his reaction to this decision: “Following the announcement that we had crossed the start line too early, we requested redress from Race Management because Charles believed that this was not the case. In order to justify this decision, we sent the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild’s GPS track for the whole of the start phase, along with the positioning indicated by the Yellow Brick beacon supplied by the organisation team. Both elements are in agreement and show that we were 50 m from the start line when the starting gun fired at 14:15 hours. It comes as a relief for Charles and for the whole team. He can now dedicate his time solely and fully to his race. It’s shaping up to be a lively and important day.”

                    At the helm of the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, Charles Caudrelier is currently leading the Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe. At the 07:00 UTC position report this Friday 11 November, as the five-arrow giant was making her way along the Iberian peninsula, she boasted a lead of 26.3 miles over Fran?ois Gabart and 45.4 miles over Thomas Coville.

                    The Route du Rhum 2022 in brief

                    ?- 12th edition
                    - 138 singlehanded sailors competing
                    - 4 classes and 2 categories (Ultim 32/23, IMOCA, Ocean Fifty, Class40, RHUM Multi and RHUM Mono)

                    Start => Wednesday 9 November at 14:15 hours local time
                    - Course for the Ultims = 3,542 miles along the direct route between Saint Malo and Pointe-?-Pitre, which equates to 5,700 km.

                    The Ultim class entries
                    1. Maxi Edmond de Rothschild // Charles Caudrelier
                    2. Actual // Yves Le Bl?vec
                    3. Banque Populaire XI // Armel Le Cl?ach
                    4. Sodebo Ultim // Thomas Coville
                    5. SVR Lazartigue // Fran?ois Gabart
                    6. Idec Sport / Francis Joyon
                    7. Mieux / Arthur Le Vaillant
                    8. Use It Again! / Romain Pillard

                    " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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                    • #11

                      Damien Seguin’s IMOCA Groupe APICIL was hit by a cargo ship and dismasted around 0330hrs (French time) this morning. The French skipper is racing on the Route du Rhum Destination Guadeloupe solo race across the Atlantic and was lying in 14th position in the IMOCA class when the incident happened. He was racing in moderate winds and manageable seas. He immediately notified Jean-Charles Monnet, his technical director and the race management of the Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe. The skipper is reported to be fine and uninjured. He is currently trying to cut the mast debris clear of his boat and has set up lights to be seen. He is not seeking assistance. He was positioned about 250 miles to the west of Les Sables d'Olonne at the time of dismasting.

                      Damien Seguin dismasted at 0330hrs this morning after being hit by a cargo ship. His starboard foil was damaged but there was no ingress of water. The skipper of Groupe APICIL is motoring to Lorient. He has not requested assistance, but has been forced to retire from the Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe. After informing his technical director and Race Directors, Damien carried out a thorough check-up aboard his boat. He spent hours tidying up and stowing gear to avoid any damage to the hull. He is heading to his shore base in Lorient which he should reaching in two and a half or three days under motor. He has the wind astern and is making the most of the system developed by Yves Parlier, the Liberty kite (a kite wing which pulls Groupe APICIL along). Seventh in the last Vend?e Globe, Damien Seguin was competing in his fourth Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe and his second aboard an IMOC, this time with anew boat with foils. This is the first time that Damien has failed to complete a major race. His sponsor, the APICIL Group and all of his partners, Groupe ATF, Groupe Seguin and the OCIRP understand the skipper’s disappointment and offer their full support.

                      " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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                      • #12

                        While title favourite Charlie Dalin (APIVIA) has been enjoying something of a rich-get-richer scenario at the front of the 36 strong Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe IMOCA fleet, his lead of 60 miles ahead of Thomas Ruyant (LinkedOUt) increasing by the hour, Charles Caudrelier on the Verdier designed Ultim 32/23 Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, the out-and-out race pacemaker still has a race on his hands entering what might prove a key phase of the 3542 nautical miles race to Guadeloupe.

                        As the leading Ultim duo seek to squeeze through a ‘mousehole’ in the low pressure front that would allow them to hook into the best of a northerly breeze generated off the Bermuda high pressure system, Caudrelier, and his routing cell ashore, are keeping a close eye on Fran?ois Gabart who is 15 miles to his NW.

                        Closer to the rhumb line Gabart is actually credited with the lead this afternoon but the next hours will be critical. There is the potential for Gabart to get to the front first but the key question is what is on the other side.
                        Ashore Caudrelier -whose potential OCS penalty was annulled early this morning- has American guru Stan Honey, Franck Cammas and Morgan Lagravi?re studying the options whilst Gabart has veteran Jean-Yves Bernot and La Solitaire winner Tom Laperche in his corner crunching the weather models during what could be a definitive stage.

                        Meanwhile in Lorient, where he arrived last night with the Ultim Maxi Banque Populaire XI, dejected Armel Le Cl?ac’h is trying to be philosophical, waiting to have his broken daggerboard replaced and a hull repair complete whilst looking to find the best weather window to return to the race course to Gaudeloupe.

                        “Everything stopped in a few seconds.” Recalled a hollow eyed Le Cl?ac’h on arrival at his team base, “ There was a big cracking sound and I saw some pieces of the daggerboard pass astern. I was sailing upwind in a bit of wind and choppy seas, but nothing we couldn’t handle. I’ve been through harsher conditions with that daggerboard. So, I can’t explain what happened or why it broke. Some pieces of the daggerboard hit the hull and there are some knocks on it and in one or two places it went through the hull, so we are going to have to see if we can repair that in a reasonable time. Until Saturday evening, the weather conditions are fine and would allow us to set off. After that, the conditions are set to worsen. So we’re giving ourselves 48 hours to decide whether we set off again in the Route du Rhum to finish this story even if the result isn’t what we had hoped for. We won’t be on the podium, but would like to find a way to finish. For now, I don’t know if that is possible.”

                        Seguin abandons, Dalin gets richer
                        After being hit by a cargo ship which pulled down his rig of Groupe Apicil in the small hours of the morning Damien Seguin has abandoned, the first time ever in an ocean race for the former Paralympic world and Olympic champion. Remaining self sufficient, sailing under rescue kite power, Seguin has been making steady progress back towards the French coast.

                        Class leader Charlie Dalin, 160 nautical miles west of Cape Finisterre this afternoon, has everything running in his favour on APIVIA, extending inexorably away from his rivals. Whilst he has many times proven to have a speed edge upwind Dalin has also been always getting into more wind pressure first as he too approaches this weather front which stretches SSW to NNE.

                        British weather ace Will Harris summarises, “Things are looking a bit easier for the IMOCAs though as this first front is stopping and decreasing in force. Then a second front is arriving and the fronts merge together, crossing it Saturday evening, the key will be to be south where the fronts merge first, then there is less chance of encountering a light winds zone behind the first front. As soon as the leaders get across this front they will be into the westerly airstream and able to tack south. There will be second front Sunday night requiring a tack to the west and then the next big thing is the Azores or Bermuda high which is quite far to the west. There is a wide trough extending E-W which will have very little wind in it. The leader may be able to get through it and away even further, or indeed may get trapped allowing a catch up.”

                        After a first phase of repairs Swiss skipper Oliver Heer left Saint Malo this morning back in solo ocean racing mode but he must make another pit stop, sailing himself into Port La Foret to lift his IMOCA from the water and make a further composite repair to the hull before he can resume racing. His key objective is to get to the finish line in Guadeloupe and clock up essential Vend?e Globe qualifying miles.

                        **Rookies going steady **
                        Around 150 to 170 miles behind the Dalin, International rookies James Harayda of Britain (Gentoo), Hungary’s Szabi Weeores (Szabi Racing) and China’s Jingkin Xu (China Dream-Haikou) are all making good, steady progress on their first major transoceanic IMOCA race,
                        “I have slept a bit last night when I got a bit of separation from some boats and got a few 15-20min naps and food has been the leftover pizza from the night before we left.” Reported the 24 year old Brit Harayda, “And I am feeling a bit dehydrated and so trying to smash some water down me. I feel good, but I am ready for it to get warmer. We have a transition period coming up which is good for me as I hopefully can pull a few miles back as we get close to it. I will be upwind and then this short lived transition period. And so I will be paying a lot of attention to the weather. It is exciting. I have some miles to catch up but there is a long, long, long way to go.”

                        Hublot skipper Alan Roura noted that he had almost suffered the same fate as Seguin, “During the second night at sea, it wasn’t much fun. Throughout the night there were a whole lot of cargo ships we needed to avoid in the Bay of Biscay. I managed to snooze for a few moments, as I was really tired. Even my alarm clock took time to wake me. I was lucky, as I was 50 metres away from a huge ship delivering Amazon… A really scary moment, but in the end it worked out fine, so I’m really thinking about Damien and his team.”

                        **Favourite Douguet leads compact Class40 peloton **

                        With the Class40 fleet continuing towards the SW there are around thirty skippers grouped together in a radius of fifty miles. Ex Figaro stalwart Corentin Douguet (Queginer-Innoveo) leads on his Lombard Lift V2 Queguiner Innoveo. He is closely followed by Ian Lipinski (Cr?dit-Mutuel) as the frontrunners approach the first front.

                        For the Class 40s also, getting through the front is likely to be a key moment in the race. But the adventure is already over for Laurent Camprubi (Glaces Romanes), Geoffrey Mataczynski (Fortissimo) and Martin Louchard (Randstad-Ausy). Mikael Mergi (Centrakor) and Maxime Cauwe (Wisper) carried out a pit stop in Camaret, Jean Galfione (Serenis Consulting) in Brest, but all three they have set sail again.

                        Australia’s Rupert Henry admitted today that he was very nearly on the casualty list too, only just seeing that a lashing had failed threatening the rig of his Eora. His quick thinking saved the rig and his race. He reported, “ I had a huge problem this morning, my mast almost fell down. I had to stop and sail the wrong way for an hour while I fixed it. But I am going again now. The lashing underneath the furler broke. I saw the forestay go slack so I turned the boat downwind and put a J2 up and replaced it. But it was close, very close to losing the mast. During the night I saw the forestay a little slack. Now I feel pretty tired. It has been quite rough. I was in a good position and then I just started to put the bow down and try and get across them and line up with them before this happened. I am just trying to make a strategy to minimise my losses and get into the fleet.”

                        Henry had dropped to 21st, American Alex Mehran on Polka Dot is fifth and the defending title holder Yoann Richomme – who took a four hour penalty after the start - is up to tenth 17 miles behind his former Figaro rival Douguet.

                        In the Rhum classes Brieuc Maisonneuve leads the Multi fleet on CMA Ile de France-60,000 rebonds, over 30 miles ahead of Roland ‘Bilou’ Jourdain whilst in the Mono division Catherine Chabaud and Jean Pierre Dick are enjoying a spirited match race in second and third, closest to the conventional route.

                        **Eight ABDs **
                        Ocean Fifty
                        DMG MORI Global One
                        Groupe Apicil
                        Glaces Romane
                        Randstad Ausy
                        E. Leclerc
                        Rhum Multi
                        Rayon Vert
                        " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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                        • #13
                          Breaking: Louis Burton's IMOCA 60' Bureau Valle'e has dismasted in the Route Du Rhumb on Day 4

                          The IMOCA fleet had recently crossed a wind shear frontal boundary when the incident occurred

                          French skipper Louis Burton (Bureau Valle'e) has dismasted on the Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe while lying in ninth place on the solo race from Saint Malo to Guadeloupe which started on Wednesday at 1415hrs. He reported the accident at 1700hrs this afternoon. He is uninjured and his team are in contact with him. More information to follow.

                          " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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                          • #14

                            Guadeloupe Ocean Fifty Class leader Solidaires En Peloton ARSEP has capsized, skipper is safe inside the main hull.

                            Leader of the Route du Rhum - Destination Guadeloupe in the Ocean Fifty class French skipper Thibaut Vauchel-Camus has capsized this evening when racing in tough conditions between Portugal and the Azores. The solo skipper is not injured and is sheltering in the central hull of his trimaran. Vauchel-Camus, 43, who had taken the lead in the standings at 2000hrs last night, had just passed through the second cold front since the start of the race and was sailing again towards the south-west on starboard tack when Solidaires En Peloton - ARSEP capsized.

                            Dismasting of the Class40s La Boulang?re Bio and Crosscall

                            French champion freeskier and offshore skipper Aur?lien Ducroz has dismasted this Saturday evening, as he raced in difficult conditions. His team issued an assurance that the skipper is safe and suffered no physical damage. He has been among the leading group since the start and before he dismasted he was in 11th place in the standings, less than 30 miles from the Class40 leader, Corentin Douguet (Qu?guiner-Innoveo).

                            Dismasting of the Class40 La Boulang?re Bio
                            At 1900hrs French time French skipper Am?lie Grassi informed Race Direction and her shore team that she was just dismasted aboard the Class40 La Boulang?re Bio. She was racing in 10th position off Cape Finisterre. She is fine and uninjured. There are no water ingress or leaks on La Boulang?re Bio.

                            " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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                            • #15
                              Looking forward to better times

                              The last 24 hours have been tough for the competitors in the twelfth Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe, which started last Wednesday from Saint-Malo in France. After a series of incidents yesterday evening involving Louis Burton (Bureau Vall?e), Am?lie Grassi (La Boulang?re Bio) and Aur?lien Ducroz (Crosscall) - who all dismasted - and Thibault Vauchel-Camus (Solidaires en Peloton-ARSEP) who capsized, other skippers have suffered misfortune today (Sunday). In the Rhum Multi category, Brieuc Maisonneuve (CMA ?le-de-France - 60000 Rebonds) was rescued by Jean-Pierre Dick (Notre M?diterran?e-Ville de Nice) following the capsize of his catamaran. In the IMOCA class, Fabrice Amedeo (Nexans-Art & Fen?tres) discovered an ingress of water and is heading for Cascais (Portugal), while in the Class40, several competitors have also diverted. The race has been demanding and the warmth of the French West Indies and the finish line is something that must be earned.

                              At 2230hrs UTC on the 12 November, Erwan Thiboumery, skipper of the Interaction trimaran racing in the Rhum Multi class, contacted the Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe Race Directors to inform them that he was having problems with his headsails. The skipper and boat are doing well.

                              The genoa on the trimaran ripped and become stuck at the top of the mast, flying like a flag. The solent, only in place thanks to the swivel hook on the furler, is wrapped around the shrouds and backstay. The skipper has just managed to hoist his mainsail with three reefs.

                              Erwan Thiboumery, who has put his race on hold for the moment, is heading for Vigo (Spain) where his team will be joining him to inspect the damage and carry out any possible repairs. Everything will be done to allow him to set sail again in the best possible conditions. More information to follow

                              After capsizing around 2000hrs yesterday evening whilst leading the OCEAN FIFTY class of the Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe solo race, French skipper Thibaut Vauchel-Camus was rescued this morning from the upturned Solidaires En Peloton – ARSEP some 240 miles north of the Azores.
                              Vauchel-Camus, 42, is reported to be in good health. A chartered rescue boat, the Merida, skippered by French Figaro racer Adrien Hardy, who is a salvage expert, is on the scene and the objective is to tow the OCEAN FIFTY to the Azores.

                              LIVE TRACKER

                              The live tracker to follow the fleet's progress at this link:

                              The finish in Guadeloupe is some way off for the competitors still in the race. Considering the differences in speed between the boats that are taking part and the various incidents marking the early days of the transatlantic crossing, the Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe fleet has logically stretched out. The extremely fast Ultim 32/23 multihulls led by Charles Caudrelier (Maxi Edmond de Rothschild) and Fran?ois Gabart (SVR Lazartigue), are getting close now to the trade winds and can hope to finish in Pointe-?-Pitre on Tuesday or Wednesday, according to Charles Caudrelier’s routers. The IMOCAs and Ocean Fifty boats can also look forward to speeding downwind relatively soon. As for the Class40 and Rhum Multi and Rhum Mono categories, an approaching active front that is currently on the minds of the skippers. For once, the IMOCAs, which perform particularly well with the wind on the beam, are in amongst the Ocean Fifty multihulls. Charlie Dalin (Apivia) is right behind Quentin Vlamynck, while J?r?mie Beyou (Charal) and Thomas Ruyant (LinkedOut) are close astern of Erwan Le Roux. This happy mixture of boats is what makes the Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe such a major event.

                              KEY INFORMATION
                              On Sunday 13th November (5th day of the race), the fleet of the 12th Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe includes:

                              124 boats still racing, with 14 boats retired.
                              4 pit stops: Cit’H?tel – R?gion Guadeloupe (Sacha Daunar), Trilogik – Dys de Cœur (David Ducosson), Olivier Heer Ocean Racing (Oliver Heer) and K?ni Piperol (Cap’tain Alternance).
                              8 intend to carry out pit stops: Pierre Casenave-P?r? (Legallais), Emmanuel Hamez (Viranga), Daniel Ecalard (SOS Pare-Brise+), Mika?l Mergui (Centrakor), Fabrice Amedeo (Nexans – Art & Fen?tres), Jonas Gerckens (Volvo), Yves Courbon (Edigo Univerre) and Rupert Henry (Eora).
                              2 rescues: Thibaut Vauchel-Camus (Solidaires en Peloton – ARSEP) by Adrien Hardy this morning, and Brieuc Maisonneuve (CMA ?le de France – 60 000 rebonds) by Jean-Pierre Dick who went to his assistance this afternoon.
                              Damien Seguin (Groupe Apicil) has reached his home port of Lorient after dismasting.

                              After passing the front yesterday, the pace has stepped up for the Ultim 32/23 boats. The three frontrunners have clearly made their getaway from the rest of the fleet with Francis Joyon in fourth place on Idec Sport some 450 miles behind and only making ten knots in the past hour, while the leaders are progressing at thirty towards the trade winds. Later today, the leaders will carry out a gybe on the edge of the area of high pressure.

                              The Maxi Edmond de Rothschild continues to dominate the Route du Rhum - Destination Guadeloupe, although still under threat from SVR Lazartigue 30 miles astern. Charles Caudrelier has been impressive and avoided making any mistakes since the start of the race. When Fran?ois Gabart tried to move away from his track approaching the front, Caudrelier had no hesitation in passing through the islands to face rougher conditions and come out in front again.
                              As for Thomas Coville, he has lined up behind the two frontrunners and is now some ninety miles behind the leader, which only represents around three hours sailing on these boats, so Sodebo Ultim 3 is still clearly in with a chance.
                              Further back, Francis Joyon (Idec Sport) and Yves Le Bl?vec (Actual Ultim 3) are neck and neck with advantage going to the latter, who has accelerated over the past few hours, as he has been able to get more out of his flying Ultim. With the exception of Mis ? part Use it again ! by Extia and Maxi Banque Populaire XI currently off Galicia, the Ultim 32/23 boats now have faster conditions.

                              IMOCA skipper Paul Meilhat (Biotherm) said this morning: “It’s not easy, but all is well this morning. I have had a few technical problems since the start, but nothing serious. Conditions have been fairly tough. As soon as there is a bit of wind, the new boats are fast. Yesterday, I saw there was an opportunity to turn south earlier than those out in front. I don’t know if it really paid off, but it was an interesting move. After the front, the seas were really heavy. I managed to accelerate and not hit too many waves. The conditions will be changing soon. During the night we had 35 knots ahead of the front, but this evening there won’t be much wind at all. It’s complicated working how where to position myself. We don’t know whether if we go further south, we’ll have some upwind sailing again. We’ll find out this evening.”

                              It was far from being a quiet night for the twelve Rhum Mono and sixteen Rhum Multi boats still racing. The second front swept across the fleet generating rough conditions with sailors and boats suffering.

                              In the Rhum Mono category there has been no change at the front. Positioned to the west of the fleet, Jean-Pierre Dick (Notre M?diterran?e - Ville de Nice) is faster than his nearest rivals this morning, with Catherine Chabaud (Formatives ESI Business School Pour Ocean As Common) and Willy Bissainte (Tradisyon Gwadloup) in second and third place behind the leader.

                              In the Rhum Multi category, Belgian skipper, Gilles Buekenhout (Jess) heading towards the Azores, took the lead during the night and is slightly faster this morning than second-placed, Roland Jourdain (We Explore). After leading the fleet early in the night, Brieuc Maisonneuve (CMA Ile-de-France - 60 000 Rebonds), has now turned further south and is back in third place. Fabrice Payen (Ille et Vilaine Cap vers l’Inclusion) told us this morning about the conditions. “During the night, we had to deal with the front to get further west and pick up the wind shift. It was just like in the weather books. I changed tack and am now on the starboard tack. Everything is soaked, so I’m waiting for some sunshine now.”
                              Behind the front, a westerly air stream is now in place and all of the boats have changed tack to head towards the Azores.

                              From Class 40 skippers
                              Luke Berry (Lamotte - Module Cr?ation): “It was a bit rough in the front. I lost my two weather vanes, so it’s a bit like sailing blindfolded. We’re still slamming and ahead, the situation is going to be a puzzle.”
                              Simon Koster (Banque du L?man): “It’s really the Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe. Heavy seas, wind, a skipper that is a bit worn out, a few odd jobs to do, but at least we are heading south. I don’t know whether the trade winds will be there soon. I think there is another low-pressure system quite some way south. Inside the boat, it’s like a skating rink with a mixture of seawater and diesel that has leaked out.”
                              Antoine Carpentier (Redman): “I have both feet firmly on the brakes. There is another low-pressure system moving across to our north. I suppose we’ll have to cross the Azores High to get to the trade winds. For the moment I’m weathering the storm and waiting for more reasonable conditions to go on the attack and make my way back up the rankings. The important thing is to make sure the boat stays in good condition and will offer 100% of her ability.”

                              Kito de Pavant (HBF Reforest’Action): “We had a first front with lots of rain and there was no wind behind it, but that didn’t last. The new boats are too fast. I pale in comparison to them. Behind the second front, I’ll tack and head south. It won’t be for long though, as the wind is going to swing around to the SW to complicate things. It’s going to take longer than first thought in any case.”
                              " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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