Francis Joyon heeft nog 24u te gaan tot Brest

  • Author: Ice
    Date: ma, 02/02/2004 - 02:00

Francis Joyon staat op het punt het solorecord om de wereld zeilen te verpulveren. Vandaag is hij 72 dagen onderweg, finisht hij morgen dan knijpt hij zomaar eventjes 20 dagen uit het vorige record van 93 dagen 3h 57m 32s. Dit dateert nog vanuit de Vendeé Globe 2001. Neergezet door Michel Desjoyeaux.

"I made good progress last night. I've covered over 400 miles which puts me at around 780 miles from the finish ". In an established south-westerly air flow of 20 - 25 knots on a heading of 60°, the trimaran IDEC is hurtling along towards Brest and the finish line… " I'll easily be there by Tuesday morning " said Joyon with the prospect of 35 - 40 knot winds on the approach to the Breton coastline."

" Yesterday, I hoisted the large gennaker and managed to furl it in with the calm downwind of the islands. That enabled me to put it away. During the night I reverted back to my small sails. I gybed yesterday and am now on a course of 60°… At this angle the float is in the water. It must have taken on 300 / 400 litres, but I can't go any further round. It's the red zone there. I can't go on, or pump water or keep an eye on it when it's downwind and the boat goes quickly like that ". Suffice to say that Francis will take care of that when he finishes as strategically, from now on, the final point is straight ahead. " I'll stay on a starboard tack until the end. The wind will go up to 35 - 40 knots tomorrow afternoon and will begin to strengthen tonight. I just have to let myself be carried along".

" I'm trying to limit the risk of collision by going quicker during the day and slowing down at night. In the North Atlantic there are quite a few things floating in the water nonetheless. As there are a lot of cargo ships there are also containers as well as logs which fall overboard in rough weather … That's a fair amount of potential dangers for boats. By day the risk is reduced but you're certainly never very relaxed with cargo ships around : I passed one yesterday. I have a radar detector on board and yet it didn't have it's radar on in the middle of the North Atlantic! We're used to our well equipped cargo ships with competent crews but you have to realise that there are still boats around without any legislation or equipment! It seems to be a trend and it's a real shame…you get the impression that the guys travel under automatic pilot and that even if they see an obstacle, they're not competent enough to reflect on the adequate trajectory."

"All that to say that I'm trying to go quickly during the day and to limit the risks at night! I sleep in the dog-house more often than not. It's easier to keep watch and get on deck if need be. I'm really surprised by the temperature… At the same latitude in the southern hemisphere, despite it being the summer there, it was colder than it is here which is pretty impressive! I'm currently at 41° north and it's really mild! As for the finish well, I've made quite a few in Brittany! But at sea it's never the same twice over. That's what's magical..."

foto © Mer & Média

Joyon's website:


  • Ice

    Eddy Lekens zeilt sinds 1979 offshore zeilwedstrijden, is stichter van ClubRacer en laat bedrijven groeien met zijn online marketing bureau Lucky Cookie. Is schipper/stuurman voor vele Verbondsbezem winnaars, won diverse malen de NSR, Antwerp Race en Schelderegatta, werd 2x Nederlands kampioen Zeezeilen en in 2004 werd Eddy Lekens door het Watersportverbond verkozen tot de beste zeezeiler van Nederland.

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