So Near, So Far
Cheminées Poujoulat are negotiating their last transition of the race, the final frontier between them and the finish line. Only problem is, it is likely to take some time and that frontier - a complicated little zone between the NE'ly blowing from the Costa Brava and the W'ly and SW'ly of the southern Med - is moving with them meantimes. So it is slow and a bit frustrating just now, so near and yet so far from the finish line.
Bernard Stamm and Jean Le Cam should ease into the NE'ly in the middle of this afternoon when they pass to the west of the Balearics. Then they will sail in the NNE'ly 15-20kts towards Barcelona, the breeze clocking left. And then it gets hard to predict as the winds still look set to be light for the final 50 or 60 miles in to the finish. ETA is between 10 and 12 UTC tomorrow, but could move in either direction!
Neutrogena and GAES Centros Auditivos have a relatively straightforwards programme to the Mediterranean then it seems to get complicated. They have about 48 hours of upwind sailing, in to the African coast and then two or three tacks to Gibraltar in the N'ly trade winds. Still Neutrogena has just a few knots more wind than GAES Centros Auditivos and is a click faster. But the weather models seem to struggle to agree in the Mediterranean and there are big differences in the ETA's. They should be at Gibraltar on the 27th and 28th.
One Planet, One Ocean & Pharmaton and We Are Water are in the NE'ly 15kts trade winds and going upwind, We Are Water starting to show their speed advantage to windward.
Renault Captur seem set to stick to the west as they climb to the Equator. The Doldrums look a little better for them in the west, and they are making 11kts this morning in E'ly trade winds.
And Spirit of Hungary are in a SE'ly breeze which is dropping to give them a very light day of wind.