Ultim Challenge: Le Cléac'h's doldrums pain

Ultim Challenge: Le Cléac'h's doldrums pain

Ultim Challenge: Le Cléac'h's doldrums pain


23/02/2024 - 11:12

Stuck in the doldrums since yesterday, third placed Armel le Cléac'h has seen Thomas Coville slip away. Coville is actually gaining ground on Charles Caudrelier who is at the dock in the Azores but a high pressure ridge separates the first and second placed rivals so the skipper of Maxi Edmond de Rothschild is under no pressure from Sodebo.

In the South Atlantic Anthony Marchand is keeping an eye on the progress of Éric Péron who is around 300 miles behind.

Le Cléac'h was moving at barely six knots this Friday morning. The skipper of the Maxi Banque Populaire XI should cross the equator very early this evening. More than six hundred miles separate Coville and third placed Le Cléac'h today and the gap will continue to widen. Indeed Sodebo Ultim 3 should still have around 48 hours of good trade winds sailing, making over 30kts, to make hay and continue to open that margin on unlucky Le Cléac'h who has had to pit stop twice in Brasil during the race, once on the way south and again on his return from the south.

Below, Anthony Marchand is chomping at the bit. If the skipper of Actual Ultim 3 is progressing at a decent average (500 miles covered over 24 hours), his progress is uncomfortable. Marchand is about to be caught by a depression coming at him from the southwest and which will push him north. The problem is that this depression also benefits Éric Péron behind who is steadily gaining small miles agains his friend and rival. .

Perhaps this evening, but more likely tomorrow morning Caudrelier is expected to resume his race towards Brest. He has 1,200 miles to cover which will start with a period with little wind but a big leftover seas. But very quickly everything will build up and he will have a lively passage to Brest where he is expected to arrive in 25kts of breeze on Monday. 

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