Saturday, 14 November 2009

TJV: Further damage to Artemis Ocean Racing may force pitstop (1300GMT 13/11/09)

Artemis. Image copyright Mark Lloyd/Lloyd Images.

by Tim Kelly and Camilla Green

The storm-force conditions (55 knots overnight) have inflicted further damage to Artemis Ocean Racing. Sam called the shore team at 1030 GMT this morning to report: “We have lost a mainsail batten (third down from the top) which flew out of the sail, the third reef pin on the boom has gone and our main Iridium handset is broken, either water-logged or from the shock of the boat pounding through the waves.”

None of the damage is terminal but the loss of the mainsail batten will compromise their race performance, and with 75% of the race remaining, Sam and Sidney are considering a pit stop either at the Azores, but that is 300nm upwind, or Madeira 400nm south-west which is a more comfortable course but further from the optimum race route. It has also been confirmed that Veolia Environnment (Roland Joursain and Jean-Luc Nelias) are also heading to the Azores to try and repair damage to their mast track, the same damage incurred by Brit Air in the opening stages of the race that resulted in their retirement. Further news to come once the Artemis skippers and the shore team have considered all options.

Artemis Ocean Racing
Transat Jacques Vabre

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