after the storm, the battle rages on all levels

Sébastien Josse and Armel Le Cléac’h during the page to Ascension Island Popular Bank

While the Ultims began their final sprint towards Martinique for a finish on Sunday, the other three categories are fighting with minimal gaps.

Leaders since the nice coup of Madeira, and dislodged on Wednesday during the rounding of Ascension Island, off the coast of Brazil, Armel Le Cléac’h and Sébastien Josse regained control of the Transat Jacques Vabre in the Ultim category this Thursday. Aboard their Maxi Banque Populaire Suffice it to say, a dust of time after 12 days at sea and with 2,500 miles ahead of the bows of these sea monsters capable of traveling at more than 40 knots. Until Fort de France, the battle will therefore be muscular, and above all uncertain. As Sébastien Josse confirmed during the morning session: “ When I see the number of gybes we have left along Brazil, the straight line is not for yet. It can be played out on every maneuver, every little grain “.

Behind this tandem, Charles Caudrelier and Erwan Israel remain in ambush at 144 miles with their Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, unaccustomed to not being in control of the race. The duos Thomas Coville-Thomas Rouxel (Sodebo 3) and Anthony Marchand-Thierry Chabagny (Actual 3), respectively 470 and 601 miles behind the leaders, bring up the rear after having doubled Ascension Island, but after this point culminating their descent towards Brazil then Martinique should not allow them to catch up, barring disaster ahead. The arrival of the Ultim is scheduled for Sunday November 12, a day blessed by the gods if ever there was one…

A violent front behind the IMOCAs

As for the Imoca monohulls, significantly more numerous at the start last Tuesday from Le Havre (40 for 5 Ultim), the battle rages just as much, if not more, along the Iberian coast. And this Thursday, Jérémie Beyou and Franck Cammas (Charal) maintain their status as favorites masterfully, ahead of Yoann Richomme-Yann Eliès (Paprec Arké) by 31 miles and Thomas Ruyant (the defending champion)-Morgan Lagravière (For People) of 45 miles. After 48 truly wild hours, the wind finally deigned to decrease in intensity to allow the sailors to breathe a little. Franck Cammas, who is not the last on the French sailing list, attests to the violence of this start to the race for the Vendée Globe boats: “ This first front was bracing and quite violent with 43 knots in the gusts. The sea was crossed. The worst was the exit from the front where the wind changed suddenly. The first third of the descent of the gulf, we were a little on the brakes. (…) The goal was to escape into this cross sea, (…) we manage the boat even if sometimes it is unmanageable »…

Gaps as small for the Ocean Fifty and the Cl 40

Concerning the Ocean Fifty trimarans which left Lorient on Monday one day before the IMOCAs, they come “ to cross the ridge at the latitude of Gibraltar and can start thinking about their descent towards the trade winds », as indicated by the organization, Thibault Vauchel-Camus and Quentin Vlamynck (Solidaires en peloton) ahead of Pierre Quiroga (winner of the Solitaire du Figaro 2022) and Ronan Treussart (Viabilis Océans) by 53 miles. Finally on the Cl 40 side, and while many boats in the different categories are licking their wounds (6 boats are officially out of the race to date out of the 95 at the start), the Figarists Achille Nebout and Gildas Mahé (Amaarris) are leading the way. troop ahead of Nicolas d’Estais and Léo Debiesse (Café Joyeux) but the first ten monohulls are held within 33 miles. Or the same gap as between the first two Ultims…

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