HEADING TOWARDS THE HORN
IDEC SPORT has been speeding along averaging more than 25 knots since she gybed yesterday afternoon in the middle of the Pacific. Cape Horn is this morning more than 3300 miles ahead of the big, red trimaran, which hopped onto the northern edge of the area of low pressure yesterday lunchtime, in order to find an efficient route towards the legendary cape. This low is moving eastwards forcing Joyon and his troops to remain on a relatively northern route today (Tuesday), as otherwise they would be facing headwinds, meaning uncomfortable conditions for the men and the boat and a handicap in terms of speed. Ahead there is an area of transition with lighter winds, as the low fills probably this evening as they enter the 25th day of racing. A huge high has developed on the route to South America and today they are going to have to take a crucial decision about which strategy to adopt to cross this area. They could stay north and a long way from the direct route, or dive deep down in the south, getting close to the Antarctic ice…. Strangely, this situation was exactly what happened to the Jules Verne Trophy record holder, the maxi trimaran Banque Populaire V, four years ago, when they had on their 25th day their worst 24 hours only gaining 250 miles or so towards the finish.