With almost 700 miles sailed in 24 hours averaging more than 29 knots yesterday, the maxi- trimaran IDEC SPORT revealed part of her full potential as she approached the Cape Verde Islands. However, these islands appear not to want to see Francis Joyon and his crew of five get away from them.
IDEC SPORT went very quickly through the islands going between Mindelo-Santa Lucia. But yesterday evening, it was the wind shadow of the two small southern islands, Fogo and Sao Tiago, which slowed them down, forcing them to carry out a series of gybes in light airs to get way in a fading trade wind.
During the night, the giant trimaran continued due south to deal with the passage through the Doldrums and the transition with the SE’ly trade winds. This is going to be a crucial day with very volatile weather patterns ahead of IDEC SPORT, making the weather charts fairly useless in this area where the masses of air from the Northern Hemisphere meets those from the Sothern Hemisphere. The boat’s average speed dropped and they are now behind the pace set by Banque Populaire V by more than 170 miles this morning. As they start their 5th day at sea, Joyon and his men are still some 600 miles from the Equator.