- Maxi Spindrift 2
Spindrift 2 left the dock in Brest at 0830h CET this morning, Wednesday 15 January, to start their Jules Verne Trophy attempt. The giant black and gold trimaran and her 12 crew expect to cross the line at Ushant, by the lighthouse at Créac’h, at about midday and then pick up the front, which should give them good flow to the north-west.
It was an emotional departure but the team and their supporters, who have been on standby since 5th November, are very much focused on the challenge ahead. The conditions are ideal to try and reach the equator in less than five days and possibly beat their 2015 attempt time to the equator of 4 days 21 hours 45 minutes: a record Spindrift 2 still holds.
But it is the Southern Atlantic that will determine how the team lines up to take advantage of the systems in the southern ocean. Spindrift hopes to reach the longitude of the Cape of Good Hope in less than twelve days. This would give them a days margin on the current Jules Verne Trophy record of 40 days 23 hours 30 minutes and 30 seconds, set by Francis Joyon in 2017.
Quotes from the dock:
" This is my first time around of world on a multihull: I have completed the Volvo Ocean Race with Dongfeng Race Team, but that was in a monohull, and this trimaran is almost twice the size! And there are no stopovers! And everything is very different in a multihull!"
" I am a little apprehensive about leaving, but this is one great boat and one great team. I know the trimaran well as I have been sailing with the team for three year. As a bowman alongside Benjamin (Schwartz) and Jackson (Bouttell), we are quite exposed. We have to be careful and Yann (Guichard) is very attentive during manoeuvres - and we also have to balance that with going quickly. I am keen to see the Southern Ocean!"
" This is one great journey: I have already completed a couple of transats with Spindrift 2 but to be able to go around the world - that is magnificent. For sure there are nerves when you leave, and also some apprehension, but I am excited about going in to the Southern Ocean. It is one of the greatest challenges in sailing and it is amazing to have this opportunity. This is an unique adventure! The crew is super and it is a privilege to sail with them. "
" The first hours will be quite intense as there is a front coming in from the West. It looks like the wind from the north west will stay with us and take us quickly to Cap Finisterre and then on a 70% bearing to the Equator. At the moment the Doldrums look to have a gentle breeze.
CLS will provide us with details of ice and, while the Atlantic and Indian Oceans shouldn’t be too much of a problem, it looks like the Pacific will be more difficult as there are a lot of icebergs in the Ross Sea. As they are quite far north it may be possible to pass below them so we may have to adjust the course a little."