The first running of the Krys Ocean Race in MOD70 trimarans is over. The speedy 70-foot tris departed New York on July 7th and the top three boats crossed the finish line on July 12. Four days, 21 hours, 8 minutes and 37 seconds across the Atlantic for the winning boat, Spindrift Racing, is moving a bit faster than the average voyaging boat!
From the press release: "Spindrift racing (Yann Guichard) finished at 12h 08 '37 UTC to take outright victory. Crossing the finish at the Petit Minou light, at the entrance to the Rade de Brest at 13hrs 19min 49secs (15hrs 19min 49secs local), 1h 11m 12s behind the winner, Sébastien Josse and the crew of Groupe Edmond de Rothshchild took second place after being pursued vigorously for more than four days by double Vendée Globe winner Michel Desjoyeaux and the crew of FONCIA who finished third only 28 minutes, 8 seconds behind them."
Speaking immediately after completing the race a delighted Guichard, whose first major ocean racing victory this is as skipper, winning the inaugural oceanic event for the MOD70, said:
“We have won this first race and are really happy. We enjoyed it and we really made a great routing. These last miles were tough especially when Groupe Edmond de Rothschild and Foncia could catch up. We are surprised at the speed. It was all on a starboard tack then only a few minutes on port for the finish.”
Guichard and his crew, which included the highly experienced Pascal Bidégorry who skippered the giant catamaran Banque Populaire to set the existing outright Transatlantic record in August 2009, made a key move on the second night of the passage which saw their gains climb quickly on the fleet, sailing lower and faster with a gennaker set rather than the standard headsail that their opponents carried.
Bidégorry recalled: “I think the advantage that was built was on the second night of the race. A very dark and windy one. Strategically as we were on one long starboard tack it was going to be important to position ourselves as low as possible on the route. We decided to keep our gennaker up, despite the strong wind conditions. We could see that we were gaining an advantage on the others at each position ranking where we had a better angle and were up to a knot faster.”
But in fact Spindrift racing were often simply quicker than their two main rivals. During that Monday night they took the lead from FONCIA on the evening rankings, taking a lower faster line, extending from an initial three miles to 17.5 miles to 26 miles over successive rankings.
As they further benefited from their more northerly position they further curved NE towards Ireland, their lead was at its greatest – 70 miles, before the leading trio went into ghost mode. But compression occurred as they negotiated a lighter winds zone before the Scilly isles, and in the end Spindrift were only 20 miles ahead.
The next MOD70 Musandam-Oman Sail of Sidney Gavignet and his crew is expected to cross the line off the Petit Minou lighthouse at around midnight local time.
The Atlantic delivered exceptional conditions for what proved to be a speed race from New York to Brest with the MOD70’s averaging 25 knots over the theoretical optimum course and 28 knots over the actual course sailed on the water.
After leaving New York last Saturday at 1500hrs UTC (1700hrs French) to arrive at the finish line in less than five days proves a remarkable ocean racing debut for the MOD70 class.
The MOD70’s will be welcomed into the heart of the massive 20th Tonnerres de Brest maritime festival Friday 13th from 1500hrs local time.