Francis Joyon is leaving. In a few days, he will address the prestigious North Atlantic record. Success would make him the first skipper to win the incredible “Grand Slam” of records. Joyon will be on stand-by in New York from May 15. Yesterday evening the skipper was in Paris for a great evening presentation at Pershing Hall in the presence of three of the four solo Atlantic record holders Florence Arthaud, Thomas Coville and Bruno Peyron, current record holder. His record will be challenged shortly by the skipper of the Maxi-trimaran IDEC.
Hold 21 knots average for less than 5 days, 19 hours and 29 minutes. Alone. On the demanding North Atlantic. That’s the challenge with the high bar set by Thomas Coville in July 2008. Francis Joyon will sail between the Statue of Liberty and the English Cornwall. To be precise between Ambrose Light in New York and that the Lizard in the south of England . In that in-between are heavy waves, winds and icebergs to content with while sailing at breakneck speeds.
After a one month long stand-by, Maserati is likely to set sail between 10:00 p.m. this evening and 3:00 a.m. tomorrow morning local time from the North Cove Marina in New York City. The goal is for Giovanni Soldini and his international team is to break the monohull sailing record from the Ambrose Lighthouse in New York to Lizard Point off the south west coast of England.
They are challenging a record set in 2003 by Robert Miller’s monohull Mary Cha IV – 6 days, 17 hours, 52 minutes and 39 seconds. The 140-foot Mary Cha IV covered the 2,925 miles of the route at an average speed of 18.5 knots with 24 crew on board. Maserati, measuring 70-feet and with 8 crew on board is facing the daunting task of beating the record time of a racing yacht twice as large with three times the manpower. The extensive offshore experience on board Maserati might trump the larger yacht and team if the weather cooperates.
“The low pressure approaching finally seems to be the right one,” explains Giovanni Soldini. “This evening we will make the final decision, but I hope that the last weather forecasts will be confirmed. At the start we are expecting 25 – 30 knots of southerly winds and some thunderstorms. We will be departing just ahead of a cold front that will be coming through the New York area tomorrow morning.”
American crew member Brad Van Liew adds, “We are going to grab onto the eastern side of the front, and ride it as far as we can across the North Atlantic. The three major challenges will be the unpredictable thunderstorms out of New York, the large area of icebergs south and east of Nova Scotia with strong winds and a water temperature of 2.4 degrees Celsius, and another area of uncertain weather near the finish line.”
There have been some changes in Maserati’s crew: French sailors Sebastien Audigane and Ronan Le Goff, Spanish Javier de la Plaza and British Tom Gall have joined the crew to replace some members of the team that are taking part in regattas in the Mediterranean. On board Maserati with the skipper Giovanni Soldini, are watch leader Brad Van Liew, Javier de la Plaza (helm, pit), Sebastien Audigane (helm, trimmer) Ronan Le Goff (helm, bowman), Guido Broggi (boat captain), Corrado Rossignoli (bowman), and Tom Gall (second bowman).
The record attempt can be followed live on Giovanni Soldini and Maserati’s website (www.maserati.soldini.it). The site contains news, videos and photos of the lifestyle of crew members on board, and provides continuous monitoring of the marine weather conditions, as well as online tracking to check the position and speed of Maserati in real time. Continuous updates are also available on Facebook (through Giovanni Soldini’s official page) and Twitter (@giovannisoldini and Brad Van Liew @BradVanLiew).
The challenge is being sponsored by Maserati as main partner and inspiration for the boat’s name, by the Swiss bank BSI (Generali Group) and by Generali itself as co-sponsor.
Joyon’s Trans-Atlantic record bid hits snag
The setback occurred just as Joyon was about to embark on the ocean voyage, chasing the record of five days, 19 hours, 30 minutes and 40 seconds, set in 2008 by compatriot Thomas Coville, a spokeswoman said.
Joyon, 55, was approaching the starting line at Ambrose lighthouse in heavy rain and poor visibility when he discovered a crack in one of the cross-beams of the bright red trimaran “Idec,” a spokeswoman said.
“The skipper explained that they had apparently collided with a navigational buoy. The attempt at the record for crossing the Atlantic was therefore delayed,” the spokeswoman said in a statement.
Joyon returned to the New York marina for repairs “that Francis will take care of alone,” the statement said.
He had been hoping to embark late Sunday, taking advantage of a depression that brought strong south-westerly winds. Traveling at about 25 knots, the 97-foot (29.7 meters) trimaran was set to cover 2,925 miles (5,417 kilometers) between the Big Apple and the Lizard headland in Cornwall, southwestern Britain.
It was unclear when the next opportunity for an attempt on the record might come.
For the veteran extreme racing sailor, leaving with the right weather pattern for a fast crossing meant all the difference between success and failure. He’d been on standby for six weeks before deciding to take his chance Sunday.
“As is often the case, especially in this period of late summer, the meteorological picture in the North Atlantic doesn’t add up perfectly,” his team said in a statement before Sunday’s aborted start.
Joyon had called Sunday “by far the best opportunity we’ve had since we went on stand-by.”
In 2008, he set the record for a single-handed world circumnavigation of 57 days, 13 hours, 34 minutes and six seconds.
The ICAP Leopard_3, the 100ft super-maxi racing yacht is preparing to launch her assault on the west-to-east monohull transatlantic sailing record in the coming weeks.
The ICAP Leopard 3 features a radical new design concept and is a luxurious, signature charter yacht, a passage record breaker and a race winning super maxi sailing yacht.
The ICAP Leopard 3’s structural design and detailing were created by Farr_Yacht_Design and her interior and exterior styling is by Ken_Freivokh Designs. All other aspects have been managed by owner Mike Slade’s own very capable team, Ocean Marine.
The yacht is 30 m (100ft) in length, with a 6.8 m beam, a 5.5 m draft and a 4.5 metre fixed bowsprit. Her towering mast is 47 m high and her keel cants 40 degrees either side of centreline.
The yachts sleek hull is made of a powerful carbon fibre/nomex combination enabling exceptional speed. The interior volume allows for spacious accommodations which is a notable departure from the current fleet of extremely narrow boats. The wide hull of the ICAP Leopard 3 is especially suited for offshore high-speed sailing and racing and is enhanced by the presence of a chine that increases water flow off the hull and reduces structural weight.
LEOPARD 3 Racing.
The ICAP Leopard features a set of efficient underwater foils including a canting keel, twin asymmetric lifting canards forward and a single rudder on centerline aft. The stability of this canting the keel is equivalent to 200 crew members sitting on the rail, without the added weight. Two hydraulic cylinders typically operating at a load of 61 tonnes cant the keel.
The ICAP Leopards towering rig is 47 metres above the water and can carry up to 15,000 square feet of sail area.
Sailing yacht ICAP Leopard_3 has other unique High Performance Features such as twin dagger boards, (rather than a single forward canard) mounted on hydraulic rollers and a single rudder. The canards, located on either side of the mast, perfectly balance the sail forces and are lifted and lowered using hydraulically powered pinch rollers. A single, aft rudder controls the steering. The sailing yacht has the ability to take aboard up to six tonnes of water in the transom area enabling the bow to lift in fast downwind conditions.
Designed and styled by ‘Ken Freivokh Design’ in Fareham, UK, the Leopard’s interior is fitted out in an ultra light, airy and modern decor. The elegant and modern saloon is fitted with home comforts and comfortably seats 12. The large dining table is to port and to starboard a custom-built carbon coffee table is surrounded by ample seating in rich cream leather.
Following a period of extensive racing, sailing yacht Leopard will ‘evolve’ into phase 2 when three luxurious double guest cabins forward will be fitted prior to the yacht being offered to the termed charter markets of the Mediterranean and the Caribbean. Her interior is fully removable for racing.
LEOPARD 3 Saloon
The 100ft super maxi racing vessel ICAP Leopard_3 is currently berthed in New York preparing to launch her attack upon the west-to-east monohull transatlantic sailing record in the coming weeks.
Launched in 2007 ICAP Leopard, has already broken 12 major offshore racing records, including the fastest elapsed time ever set in the prestigious Rolex Fastnet Race. The west-to-east monohull transatlantic sailing record will see her tackle the path between Ambrose Light, NY and the Lizard Point, which marks the entrance to the English Channel.
ICAP Leopards target for this attempt will primarily be the record for monohull yachts with power-assisted systems of seven days, 19 hours and 21 minutes that she set in June 2008. Since setting this benchmark the yacht has undergone a series of modifications and the crew are confident that in the right conditions, they will be able to better Mari Cha IV’s outright monohull transatlantic speed record of 6 days 17 hours and 52 minutes.
Negotiating complex weather systems will play an integral role in ICAP Leopard’s latest transatlantic record attempt and will be monitored by veteran navigator Hugh Agnew.
The Captain of the ICAP Leopard is Chris Sherlock who commented: “We can’t wait to get stuck into another attempt on the Atlantic record. Last time a tight weather window forced us into accepting less than ideal conditions for our record run but we have slightly more leeway this time. Our weather window will open on the 11th May and then we will have roughly three weeks to plan our departure. This should allow us to set ourselves up for the best possible weather pattern.”
Mike Slade the owner of sailing yacht ICAP Leopard noted: “This is something that I have been looking forward to ever since we crossed the finish line last time around. It has been brilliant to hold the record for yachts with power-assisted winches but we know we can go faster. The yacht and crew have been tempered over a two year period of hard racing and we are now sailing faster and harder than ever before. We will have a decent period of time in which to pick our weather window and the crew are all preparing to go on standby for what promises to be a thrilling sprint across the pond!”
Pascal Bidégorry and his crew of 11 men aboard the maxi trimaran Banque Populaire V, smashed the Transatlantic Record crossing the North Atlantic,by half a day. They also broke the 24hr record with 908 miles.
Groupama 3 also broke their own record set in 2007.
THE ATLANTIC CROSSING RECORD
The first record time for sailing across the North Atlantic was established by the ATLANTIC schooner, a 56 m long three-masted vessel skippered by the famous American captain Charlie Barr in 1905, in more than 12 days. For 75 years this record was not beaten.
Eric Tabarly was to be the first person to smash it in 1980 aboard his trimaran PAUL RICARD, cutting the time to 10 days.
Marc Pajot (ELF AQUITAINE I), Patrick Morvan (JET SERVICES II), Loïc Caradec & Philippe Facques (ROYALE II), Philippe Poupon (FLEURY MICHON VIII), then Serge Madec (JET SERVICES V) each in turn reduceD the time, the latter having achieved the crossing in 6 days 13h 3mn and 32s in June 1990 at an average speed of 18.42 knots. This record was to remain in everyone’s mind, as it stood for more than 10 years.
We had to wait for the new generation of maxi-catamarans built for The Race for the record held by JET SERVICES V to be smashed. It was beaten on 10th October 2001 by the American Steve Fossett aboard his 38 m maxi-catamaran PLAYSTATION in 4 days, 17 hours, 28 mn and 6s, at an incredible average speed of 25.78 knots.
Bruno Peyron and his Orange II crew smashed Fossett’s record aboard the maxi catamaran Orange II, finishing the course from Ambrose Light near New York City to Lizard Point off the southwestern tip of Great Britain in just 4 days, 8 hours, 23 minutes and 54 seconds – more than 9 hours faster than Fossett. Halfway through the 3,100 nautical mile trip, Orange II hit a submerged iceberg and broke one of its two steering rudders.
The Orange II Dream Team improved on the record set by Steve Fossett’s PlayStation by 9 hours 4 minutes and 12 seconds, a record that was said to be unbeatable.
Next was 105 foot trimaran Groupama III , in 2007
With an almost unbelievable time of 4 days, 3 hours, 57 minutes and 54 seconds, beating Bruno Peyron’s time on Orange II by almost 5 hours.
Today in 2009 that record has been shattered again.
Prelimary times until ratified are,
Groupama 3, – 3 days 18 hrs, 12 min, 58 secs – average speed 31.92 kts
Banque Populaire V,- 3 days, 15 hrs,25 min,48 secs, average speed 32.94 kts, peak speed 47.15 kts,
24 Hour Record, 908 mile, average speed of 37.8 kts
1905 – Charlie Barr – Atlantic – USA – 12d 4h 1m – 10.02 kts
1980 – Eric Tabarly – Paul Ricard – FRA – 10d 5h 14m – 11.93 kts
1981 – Marc Pajot Elf – Aquitaine – FRA – 9d 10h 6m – 12.94 kts
1984 – Patrick Morvan – Jet Services II – FRA 8d 16h 33m – 14.03 kts
1986 – Loïc Caradec – Royale II – FRA – 7d 21h 5m – 15.47 kts
1987 – Philippe Poupon – Fleury Michon VIII – FRA – 7d 12h 50m – 16.18 kts
1988 – Serge Madec – Jet Services V – FRA -7d 6h 30m – 16.76 kts
1990 – Serge Madec – Jet Services V – FRA – 6d 13h 3m – 18.62 kts
2001 – Steve Fossett – PlayStation – USA – 4d 17h 28m 6s – 25.78 kts
2006 – Bruno Peyron – Orange II – FRA – 4d 8h 23m 54s – 28 kts
2007 – Franck Cammas – Groupama 3 – FRA – 4d 3h 57m 54s – 29.26 kts
The maxi trimaran Banque Populaire V has set out from New York to break the North Atlantic crossing record. They set out shortly after Groupama 3 and had winds of 25 – 30 knots last night as the multihull skippered by Pascal Bidégorry crossed the starting line at Ambrose Light, off New York at 00:47 min 42s, Banque Populaire V will carry a crew of 11. Pascal Bidégorry is not the only one to have chosen this window weather, since Groupama 3, holding of the title, also left New York shortly before Pascal to try to also break the record. A true duel of Titans is thus played currently on the open ocean Atlantic. Time to beat: 4 days 3 hours 57 minutes 54 seconds The delivery! One month after its arrival in the Marina from Brooklyn to New York, the maximum trimaran Banque Populaire V finally will be able show her capabilities. The North Atlantic crossing is 2925 miles for the newest of the giants. Between the lighthouse of Ambrose off New York and the finishing line between Ushant and the Cape Lizard, the time of reference to beat is 4 days 3 hours 57 minutes and 57 seconds. The weather window seems very promising. The meteorologist Marcel Van Triest thinks this is the right window for the 40 meter tri. On a course between the New World and the Old continent has challenging conditions.
Total distance defined is by the WSSRC (World Sailing Speed Council Record) Pascal Bidégorry was ready for this departure as the Banque Populaire V waited in New York for a month to get this weather window.
Crew List for the Record attempt
Pascal Bidégorry – skipper, shift leader
Ronan Lucas – helmsman
Kévin Escoffier – coxswain
Yvan Ravussin – shift leader
Ewen Clech – number one
Sebastien Audigane – shift leader
Florent Chastel – number one
Jean-Baptiste Le Vallant – coxswain
Emmanuel Le Borgne – coxswain
Marcel Van Triest – navigator
Pierre-Yves Moreau – number one
Xavier Revil – coxswain
Franck Cammas and his nine crew are perfectly positioned on the transatlantic record route. At noon this Thursday after fourteen hours at sea, Groupama 3 was situated between Halifax (Nova Scotia) and Sable Island, maintaining an average speed since the start of over 32 knots. To reach Lizard Point in under 4 days 03 hours 57 minutes 54 seconds remains totally within their grasp…
Franck Cammas was in fine fettle this Thursday noon for the first radio link-up organised with the shore-based HQ in Lorient, at which point the green trimaran had already covered over 450 miles since setting out from New York on Wednesday at 20h 12′ 16” UT. “We’re sailing downwind on flat seas with 20 to 25 knots of breeze. We’ve had to make a few sail changes since leaving the Ambrose Light, hoisting more sail aloft this morning as we set the gennaker. We’re trying to go fast by heading up to accelerate. The crew is well aware of the score during such record attempts and the conditions aren’t overly difficult: we’ve been able to rest whilst maintaining a high average speed. Our watch system is in place at the moment (0930 hours UT) Fred Le Peutrec, Lionel Lemonchois and Ronan Le Goff are on deck; Steve Ravussin, Bernard Stamm and Olivier Mainguy are on stand-by; myself, Loïc Le Mignon and Bruno Jeanjean are resting. As for Stan Honey, he is off-watch so he can take up position at the chart table and help us on deck during manoeuvres.
The trajectory as far as Lizard Point isn’t as clear as all that: after Newfoundland we’re going to have to choose between a route which sees us heading up a bit or bearing away a little, which has repercussions on the sail configuration. We’re going to take that decision after Cap Race… The crux of the matter still centres on the end of the course as the front looks to want to drag its heels as we approach the goal.”
Sylvain Mondon from Météo France, Groupama 3′s onshore router, also explained the reasoning behind this start time, as Pascal Bidégorry and his crew opted to set out from the Ambrose Light two and a half hours later (Wednesday 29th July at 22h 47′ 42” UT): “Last night, a line of squalls passed over New York generating fairly strong S’ly winds (25-30 knots), which enabled us to set off a little earlier than planned. This decision is supported by the fact that within a few hours of the departure time, the course time was the same: taking the start a little earlier enables us to have a little room for manoeuvre in relation to the depression system which will accompany the trimaran after Newfoundland. A cold front has formed over Canada and will traverse the Atlantic as far as the British mainland: Groupama 3 will catch up with it as she approaches the Labrador current and keep slightly away from the front. As such it will be easier to control the trajectory by staying a little closer to the great circle route (direct route). It’s a very good weather window as it prevents us from extending the course whilst remaining on the same tack.”
Newfoundland, the nerve centre
Groupama 3′s trajectory promises to be very rectilinear as far as Lizard Point and the passage permitting a more or less direct route towards the goal is less than 20 hours ahead of the giant trimaran. It is worth recalling that the warm current associated with the Gulf Stream is helping the multihull’s progress, but as they approach the Grand Banks the temperatures will drop right off as they come face to face with the cold Labrador current, which runs along the East coast of Newfoundland. Fog, damp, shipping, fishermen… there are any number of obstacles dotted about this stretch of the course, but from noon on Friday, the path across the Atlantic will be clear with relatively calm seas because as the multihull catches up with the Canadian low, this system will push the Azores High southwards, leaving a soothed ocean in its wake.
Last night, Franck Cammas and his nine crew initially had to deal with sandbanks scattered around the start of the course off Nantucket. Compelled to sail twenty or so miles to the South of the direct route, Groupama 3 was able to slip along this Thursday morning and improve her attacking angle in relation to the wind (25 knots of SW’ly, sailing 130° off the true wind). As such, she has repositioned herself this noon onto the shortest route by stealing a lead over a cold front associated with a low coming across from Canada. The aim is to stay ahead of the front so as to hook onto the same stable SW’ly wind all the way to the area surrounding the English coast. In order to achieve this the average speed will have to be very consistent throughout the course and sailed on a single tack (contrary to the record set on 24th July 2007 by Groupama 3). Their improvement on the reference time of 4d 03h 57′ 54”, should therefore be appreciable by Friday evening, as the green trimaran had to put in three gybes a long way South of the direct route two years ago…
The `hunter’ Pascal Bidégorry, who set out from New York a little over two and a half hours after Groupama, was maintaining the same pace as Franck Cammas: it remains to be seen if the separation at the start will cause their trajectories to diverge off Newfoundland tonight!