Off the coast of Buenos Aires
Since Sunday afternoon, Gitana 13 has taken advantage of a sustained southeasterly wind to once again chalk up boat speeds more in keeping with its potential. Still cruising along the Uruguayan coast and nearing Argentina—the route chosen to keep a good distance from the Saint Helena high-pressure system—Lionel Lemonchois and his nine-man crew are preparing to enter another zone of unstable winds.

After several days during which they covered a small number of miles, the maxi-catamaran fitted out by Baron de Rothschild reached its stride again yesterday. “What a pleasure it is to do another day of 600-plus miles,” said Dominic Vittet, the onboard navigator. “It had been awhile since we've experienced that, it's good for our morale knowing that we're again picking up the pace. We're still being careful, in order to protect the boat, but we're also in a race against the clock to get from New York to San Francisco as quickly as possible!” said Vittet. 

The clear sailing along the Latin American coast will be interrupted on Tuesday when the team encounters a stormy low-pressure system. The loss of speed is already perceptible this morning, as Gitana 13 jibed toward Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina. Fortunately, the maxi-catamaran should only be affected by this system for a few hours. According to Sylvain Mondon's forecast, Lemonchois and his crew could enter catch another set of solid high-pressure system winds in the evening to help carry them toward Cape Horn.

Health troubles at sea

Léopold Lucet is both the No. 1 and the medical onboard Gitana 13. In order to meet the requirements of this latter position, last year he completed a training course provided by the European Health Training Institute. The training course, bearing the evocative name ATMSI (medical techniques in situations of isolation), was aimed at familiarizing our medical apprentice with basic health techniques. Part of the course was also devoted to diagnosis and to implementing the appropriate solutions to so-called minor health problems.

Léopold put the theory to the test last week, when Nicolas Raynaud, trimmer and onboard photographer, bumped his head while snapping photos on deck and got a gash above his nose. Treatment: five stitches to close the wound. Everything is okay now. Thanks to the expert care provided by our friend Léo, the cut has healed and there is no longer a risk of infection.

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