Please select your home edition
Edition
Selden

Golden Globe Race - Day 18: Péché Leads through the Doldrums

by Golden Globe Race 18 Jul 17:44 BST 18 July 2018
Jean-Luc Van Den Heede seeking out fresh wind in the Doldrums to keepi the pressure on race leader Philippe Péché © Christophe Favreau / PPL / GGR

As the leading trio of Philippe Péché, Jean-Luc Van Den Heede and Mark Slats position themselves to cross the Doldrums, the dramas continue at the back of the Golden Globe Race fleet. Nabil Amra, the US based Palestinian sailing the Biscay 36 Liberty II formally announced his retirement from the race today after reaching Tenerife overnight.

Fellow American Istvan Kopar has also announced that he intends to stop in the Cape Verde Islands to replace the self-steering system on his Tradewind 35 Puffin and join Frenchman Antoine Cousot in the Chichester Class for those who are forced to make one stop during their solo circumnavigation.

Cousot stopped in Lanzarote on Sunday complaining that his WindPilot wind vane steering could not control his Biscay 36 Métier Intérim, but after two days in port it became clear as he left Marina Rubicon on yesterday that his decision to drop down to the Chichester Class, was as much mental as mechanical.

In a candid interview with Race Organisers, Cousot said: I needed the break just to relieve the pressure. It was important for me mentally to make sure that everything is working...And it was good to have a hamburger and a beer!

This is a personal challenge – a huge adventure. You have no idea, even reading Moitessier's book and those of other singlehanders, about what it is like being alone. They talk about the sea and the environment, but they don't talk about what is going on inside."

As Métier Intérim set out to sea again late yesterday, Race Director Don McIntyre observed. "At the end of the day, the wind vane issue was important, but Antoine had all the parts onboard and simply replaced a couple of bolts that had fallen out. No extra parts were brought onboard during his stay. There were also a few electrical issues, but this was more a decision by Antoine to stop, regroup and think about what is going on."

Cousot had planned to restart yesterday morning, but then lunch got in the way followed by an afternoon siesta, and he finally relinquished his ties to dry land at 17:00.

Istvan Kopar reported similar issues with his WindPilot self steering as he passed through the Marina Rubicon gate on Sunday but elected to continue south. Yesterday however, he messaged. "A lot of manual steering and cursing rough seas." Later, he informed Race HQ that he had decided to head to the Cape Verde Islands and replace his self-steering system for another brand, a stop that will drop him down to the Chichester Class, leaving just 12 of the original 17 starters competing in the Golden Globe Race.

Nabil Amra, who reported on Monday that a weld had broken on his Beaufort wind vane self steering, has made the decision not to continue. As he battled his way across 35knot winds en-route to Tenerife, the Palestinian messaged: "Wind and waves in the teeth...Sailing is better with friends." This was followed by: "Violently ill now..No sleep for 4 days." It is clear that he has had enough...for now.

Back at the front of the fleet, Jean-Luc Van Den Heede has moved up to 2nd place and reduced fellow Frenchman Philippe Péché's lead to 24 miles as they and Dutchman Mark Slats position themselves to cross the Doldrums, the area of calms that divide the North East and South East trade winds. Péché's Rustler 36 PRB is nearest to the Senegal coast, Slats (Rustler 36 Ohpen Maverick) who caught a tasty tuna today – his first fresh meat since the start – is enjoying stronger winds close to the Cape Verde Islands and Van Den Heede (Rustler 36 Matmut) is running a median course between them.

The remainder of the GGR fleet is now spread 500 miles astern but a close fight is developing mid fleet with just 47 miles dividing Susie Goodall (Rustler 36 DHL Starlight) now back up to 5th and 9th placed Uku Randmaa (Rustler 36 One and All).

Related Articles

Golden Globe Race: Van Den Heede extends lead
East proves best – Jean-Luc Van Den Heede extends lead over Mark Slats to 575 miles Over the weekend, French yachtsman Philippe Péché has fashioned a repair to the aluminium tiller on his Rustler 36 PRB, and has decided to head to Cape Town under reduced sail. In the race Jean-Luc Van Den Heede extends lead over Mark Slats to 575 miles Posted on 13 Aug
Golden Globe Race day 44
East proves best – Jean-Luc Van Den Heede extends lead over Mark Slats to 575 miles Over the weekend, French yachtsman Philippe Péché has fashioned a repair to the aluminium tiller on his Rustler 36 PRB, but without self steering, has decided to head to Cape Town under reduced sail. Posted on 13 Aug
Philippe Péché reports loss of steerage in 50kts
Philippe Péché reports loss of steerage in 50knot winds - forced to take down all sail and drift 57–year old Philippe Péché made an emergency call to the Golden Globe Race HQ at 18:10 UTC yesterday to report that the tiller on his Rustler 36 yacht PRB had broken in 45-50 knot winds and he had no steering. Posted on 11 Aug
Golden Globe Race day 42
Philippe Péché reports loss of steerage in 50knot winds 57–year old Philippe Péché made an emergency call to the Golden Globe Race HQ at 18:10 UTC yesterday to report that the tiller on his Rustler 36 yacht PRB had broken in 45-50 knot winds and he had no steering. Posted on 11 Aug
Golden Globe Race day 37
This week should determine who leads the Golden Globe Race As this fleet of singlehanders bash their way through the South East Trade winds towards the Roaring Forty latitudes of the South Atlantic, all eyes are on the South Atlantic High pressure system and the effect this will have on the leaders. Posted on 6 Aug
Golden Globe Race day 30
Istvan Kopar reinstated to the Golden Globe class As the fleet leaders crossed the Equator over the weekend, the computer tracking gives Philippe Péché (FRA) Rustler 36 PRB an 18 mile lead over fellow Frenchman Jean-Luc Van Den Heede with Dutchman Mark Slats trailing in third. Posted on 30 Jul
Golden Globe Race day 23
Rich get Richer as leaders break out of Doldrums The last few days has seen frustration sweep across the entire Golden Globe Race fleet as these solo circumnavigators experience the intense heat and humidity of the Tropics while trying to escape the clutches of the Doldrums. Posted on 23 Jul
Golden Globe Race, day 16
Péché and Slats slug it out at the front, Farebrother pulls out of the Race French leader Philippe Péché and his Rustler 36 PRB is being pushed hard by Dutch rival Mark Slats (Ophen Maverick) as the Golden Globe Race fleet enjoy glorious trade wind conditions on the run south towards the Cape Verde Islands. Posted on 16 Jul
Golden Globe Race: Péché sacrifices a 4 hour lead
Mark Slats closes gap to nine miles, Jean-Luc Van Den Heede is third He is still in first place, but French Golden Globe Race leader Philippe Péché threw away a hard-fought 3½ hour lead at the first gate in this 30,000 mile solo non-stop round the world race today Posted on 13 Jul
Golden Globe Race day 9
Philippe Péché strengthens lead, Susie Goodall pulls up to fifth French skipper Philippe Péché and his Rustler 36 PRB have opened up a 45 mile lead over fellow Frenchman Jean-Luc Van Den Heede (Rustler 36 Matmut) over the weekend after enjoying a fast run down the Portuguese coast. Posted on 9 Jul