Well, they have to take an option but it does not seem to be that they are in trouble and meanwhile they had won 120nm to the pack and still counting
Groupama’s bold call to split with the fleet and sail a more direct route close to the African shoreline appeared to be paying off this morning, with media crew member (MCM) Yann Riou describing last night as a “magic night” on board the boat.
“A full moon, no cloud, temperature of 20 degrees. Downwind between 10 and 15 knots - a delight,” Riou wrote in an overnight blog. “We might have less fun if the others get 200 miles ahead of us, but right now, we are enjoying it.”
Whether Groupama’s gamble pays off depends on whether they can break away from dying wind corridor close to the shore and find the stronger, more consistent tradewinds, before their rivals do. Team Telefonica, PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG and CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand all opted to punch west into the Atlantic in search of stronger breeze.
Riou said the Groupama team had big decisions ahead of them that could prove vital to their success in the leg.
“The latest routing is not very good for us because of a break in the trades, in the south. In a few hours we will have to make a key choice for our race. Meanwhile we are still focused, careful to make the boat move as well as possible and waiting for the next weather forecast.”
They have two options: Going to Cabo Verde and then west or turn now to the west. The two options will give them good winds. The first option will give them slower winds but probably an easier passage on the doldrums the second one more speed but a more problematic passage on the doldrums.
For me the less risky is to go west now. That way they would be converging with the pack, they would stay well ahead and could control them.
It's a hard choice because you can lose a lot of time on the doldrums and things are unpredictable on that region, you can win or lose a lot depending only on luck.
anyway, very interesting. The race would be a lot more boring without Groupama
. Cammas is a very good addiction to this race.
Take a look at the med: Abu Dhabi is already on its way to the Atlantic:
Volvo Ocean Race 2011-2012 | Race Data Center