The Start of the 2nd leg of the GLOBE40 got under way today at 15:00 hours local time in Mindelo Bay on the island of Sao Vincente in the Cape Verde archipelago.
The crews competing in this 1st edition of the GLOBE40 Round the World race found it hard to leave the exceptional warmth, kindness and hospitality of this very enticing “Small country” ( sic the singer Cesare Evoria).
However, the time has come to attack the north face of this GLOBE40 course. Indeed, the longest leg of the course awaits with some 6,245 miles to cover on a direct course and likely around 7,000 miles or nearly 13,000 km before they reach the island of Mauritius. Fortunately, the crews have had a gradual work up to get to this stage via the 1,000-mile prologue from Lorient – Tangier and then the first leg from Tangier to Mindelo spanning 2,000 miles.
Today they begin the journey from the Cape Verde archipelago to the archipelago of Mauritius with its many sister islands like the Rodrigues, from the Atlantic Ocean to the Indian Ocean, from the northern hemisphere to the southern hemisphere, and from summer to winter and then on to spring, from one tropic to another… It is a truly epic journey: the longest offshore leg in Class40 since the Global Ocean Race course in 2011, the equivalent of 2 Route du Rhums one after the other, a possible 35 days at sea for the first boat with an entry into the Roaring Forties and multiple passages to negotiate as the event’s weatherman Christian Dumard, explains.
“The Globe 40 competitors will have to pass through the Doldrums with a West wind at a point which is much further east than what we’re used to in the races passing through this region in winter. This is a common occurrence in summer. Tuesday and Wednesday are set to be stormy.
The wind will then gradually back round from the west to the south and then the south-east. The skippers will have to hunt down this rotation in the wind by making for the African coast. Having changed tack on Thursday or Friday, the 6 boats in the fleet will have to sail in a well-established south east wind from Friday.
From there, the competitors will have to decide how to get around the Saint Helena High. Each of them will need to choose whether to position themselves to the east or west. The western route enables a faster journey, albeit longer. In contrast, the eastern route is slower but shorter.
Once the sailors are to the south of the famous zone of high pressure, the skippers will be focused on rounding the Cape of Good Hope. As such, they’ll have to examine how the depressions and fronts are rolling through so they can nail the timing of their passage, whilst avoiding having to punch into the current in the notorious Agulhas current, which can reach up to 4 knots.”
The GLOBE40 offers up the superlative sporting adventure and human experience by opening a door to a world generally reserved solely for professional sailors.
A huge thank you to Cape Verde’s Ministry of the Sea, Abraao Vincente and his teams, to Enapor, Cape Verde’s harbour manager , to the Marina Mindelo who were constantly on call to respond to our every need to all those, like sailor and business manager Bruno Paleta, who helps us since the beginning of the project.