Contacted by Press HQ early this Tuesday morning, the skipper of Edmond de Rothschild Group set the scene prior to tackling this new day of racing: “We’re hounding our rivals, slaloming between the sandbanks, the maritime shipping and the oil rigs! Since Skagen in Denmark, we’ve experienced some pretty changeable conditions, sailing against the wind, but it hasn’t really been unpleasant. We’re awaiting our entry into the English Channel to sail in slightly clearer waters with fewer course marks…”
Sébastien Josse reviewed his crew’s start to the race and explained Edmond de Rothschild Group’s standing after 48 hours of racing: “We lost a few miles as we were exiting the Skagerrak Strait, largely as a result of the sea state: some attacked more than others. Following that, the leaders had a slight edge with more favourable conditions at the front of the fleet, but the deltas aren’t damning.”
This is especially true given that the upcoming weather situation could reshuffle the cards. Le Pas-de-Calais and the entry into the English Channel are currently under the influence of a ridge of high pressure. The latter is generating some very light SW’ly winds and constitutes a real weather barrier for the MOD 70 fleet. Given that the phenomenon is relatively stable, the men of Gitana Team will have to grin and bear it throughout the day before they can latch onto a steadier breeze over the course of the evening.
As predicted by the navigators prior to the start in Kiel, the five MOD 70s in this European Tour are tightly grouped. At the 1000 UTC position report, Spindrift Racing was continuing to lead, but now only boasts a 5-mile advantage over Michel Desjoyeaux and his men. Sébastien Josse and his crew are positioned 11 miles astern of the black trimaran. Slightly set back yesterday at the midday standing, Musandam – Oman Sail and Race for Water benefited from the weather conditions reigning between the Dutch and English coastlines to make up ground on the head of the fleet and are right back in the thick of the action today.
Leg 1 – Standing on Tuesday 4 September, 1000 UTC
- Spindrift Racing 538.5 miles to the finish
- Foncia 5.6 miles astern of the leader
- Edmond de Rothschild Group 11.4 miles astern of the leader
- Musandam – Oman Sail 17.9 miles astern of the leader
- Race for Water 22.3 miles astern of the leader