WhatsApp Image 2020-07-11 at 23.32.59 (1)
Published on 13/07/2020

This thing is crazy; it’s a Figaro race rather than an IMOCA one! 

“Conditions are fantastic. We have flat seas, there’s around 15 knots of breeze, the boat’s powering along and it’s very pleasant. It’s no longer cold. I’m looking at the latitude and how we’re going to make landfall. Meantime, I’m dropping southwards nicely so we’ll be hooking back up with a summery climate again.

I was well equipped for the north. I brought all my clothes that I’ll be taking on the Globe. It does take some getting used to, putting on an extra layer before going to sleep so you don’t wake up icy cold. Once you’ve been caught out once in that regard, you soon remember it next time around!

I feel pretty good. I’m keen to make fast headway towards the Gallimard waypoint and get my teeth into the final section of the course. I’m managing my sleep patterns well. I found it quite difficult for the first 48hrs of the race due to electronic issues. I had some problems getting into the swing of the race as I spent so much time tinkering with the boat to find the poor contact, but after two days it was sorted, since which time I’ve been flat out!

This thing is crazy; it’s a Figaro race rather than an IMOCA one! We’re regularly crossing tacks. I saw Maxime Sorel late yesterday afternoon and Kojiro Shiraishi the other day.

I’m seeking the best possible trim for the boat so I can sail as quickly as possible and make up the lost miles. Once I’ve done that, I’ll have done my job! I should arrive at the Gallimard mark in 10 to 12 hours’ time, according to how light the winds are in that zone. If all goes to plan, the light airs will shift forward the moment the front runners reach them and they will continue in that vein thanks to the zone of high pressure behind them. As a result, it’s possible that the wind will continue to veer and continue to carry the system northwards.

I set sail with a boat that is pretty much in Vendée Globe configuration. I have a lot of food, a lot of clothing and lots of bags to train myself in the art of stacking. I’ve viewed this race as a test run so that I don’t end up on the day of the Vendée Globe start with lots of things I don’t know how to deal with.

I still have some improvements to make, that never stops! We still have things to change, but we’ll know where to set the limits.”