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Vendee Globe Finish.

Agree completely about the coverage, but sailing is still very much a niche sport. The Vendée has broken its former French parochialism, but is it ever going to attract the kind of money that drives real innovation? IMHO it won’t.

I don’t think there will be a huge shift in the Vendée until it starts attracting teams rather than skippers.
As electro pointed out he increased satellite coverage of this Vendee Globe will eventually bring more sponsorship from / for the big teams. Imagine if Hugo Boss and Alex Thompson had finished with a race record the EU press would have been even more interested than they are now.

So far neither the Vendee or the Americas Cup have made the American / Canadian MSM news at all. It may hit the Cdn news if the U.S loses against NZ in the AC finals because Cdn's love reading that kind of stuff. Conversely it will only hit the U.S MSM if the U.S WINS against NZ in the AC finals because, well that's Americans for you.

So yes, the sport needs this extra coverage to bring in more money.
 
Vendee Globe - Herrmann now 2nd, Dalin 440 nm from finish but watch Burton.

Charlie Dalin has increased his lead. Boris Hermann has taken second place but Louis Burton is faster and not far behind him in distance to finish. However, it looks to me like Burton has a better position for winds and a better line to the finish. Fairly soon he will be gybing East towards Les Sables d'Olonne, in front of Thomas Ruyant and Yannick Bestaven.

Further South, Damien Seguin and Giancarlo Pedote have already gybed ENE. Jean Le Cam and Benjamin Dutreux are heading NE. Jean has a better speed and VMG than Giancarlo. There's some video from Pip Hare who is still avoiding the sun but is now allowed out to sail at night. She is enjoying the breeze and sailing by hazy moonlight.

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A reminder of how busy that area is:
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Further back, Manuel Cousin still slow but Miranda Merron and Clement Giraud are moving more normally again. Miranda's brief message this morning:
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Alexia barrier and Ari Huusela are passing the Falkland Islands. She hasn't given up and as she moves further North the milder climate should help. They still have over 6000 miles to go.

Rankings as of 11:00:
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Vendee Live - "Today, we welcome Marcus Hutchinson, team manager of LinkedOut and Will Harris, skipper Team Malizia and co-Skipper of Boris Herrmann"

They show a satellite interview between the French Vendee Live team and Charlie Dalin. Andi asks Marcus to translate, which he does really well.

ETA - Marcus clarifies Charlie Dalin's fod situation in response to a question from a viewer via the internet.
Charlie has not run out of food, just the nice food. He says he's eating powder, reconstituted with water obviously but it's not ideal and he will be hungry.

 
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Vendee Globe - 5pm front of race update

It looks like Dalin and Herrmann are having to tack through those winds. Their VMGs are not high. Even Clarisse Cremer is getting 14.9 kts VMG and everyone between, except Giancarlo Pedote is making over 15 kts VMG. Jean Le Cam is now less than 500 nm from the leader. Really we need to look at the distance to finish for each skipper rather than distance from Dalin as other than Hermann, nobody else is taking that indirect coastal route to Les sables d'Olonne. The VMG should by now relate to the finishing point rather than any waypoint. It is more important for those with time credited for the rescue. I suspect their time will be multiplied by their 24 hour VMG or a similar calculation to get an estimated distance that would have been travelled in that time and stop the clock for them that distance from the finish point to derive their final place at the finish.
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Here are the +12, +24, +36 and +48 hour winds as forecast today:
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The VMGs can be found as usual in the rankings table:
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Overview of the fleet:
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Vendee Globe - 5pm front of race update

It looks like Dalin and Herrmann are having to tack through those winds. Their VMGs are not high.
Winds are from the south, on their starboard beam. To tack they’d have to harden up and turn South!

They will bear away as the approach the coast and maybe gybe as they cross Biscay.

Their VMGs are low because they’re not sailing direct to the finish. The boats to the North West are a pointing at the finish, but have far further to go. Dalin and Hermann should pick up the prevailing strong southerlies that accelerate across Biscayne as they bear away.

Interesting to see a split fleet though.
 
Bleeding edge for the niche sport that is. :lol: As you say the resources are incomparable with F1 or the Americas Cup but even with the Americas Cup there has been the lack of destructive testing until they got together in Italy to do just that. American Magic showed what can happen to such a computer reliant, finely balanced machine. Gitana 17 is out again due to a rudder failure which couldn't be repaired at sea. Medallia is not going fast but is still going after a rudder change at sea.

One Vendee Live guest suggested trickle down of the sails from AC75s to VG boats. I wonder about the cost, complexity and inability to repair at sea. At some point the skipper becomes a computer and the sailor becomes a caretaker. As with aircraft it can be done but the human is the limiting factor in terms of what they can cope with and the conditions they require to survive the journey. Japanese robot horse racing never really caught on beyond Japan. :lol:
The vast majority of ocean racing retirements occur due to collisions with UFOs. The simple fact is that if you hit a floating ISO container at 10kts, you’re going to do a lot of damage.
 
Winds are from the south, on their starboard beam. To tack they’d have to harden up and turn South!

They will bear away as the approach the coast and maybe gybe as they cross Biscay.

Their VMGs are low because they’re not sailing direct to the finish. The boats to the North West are a pointing at the finish, but have far further to go. Dalin and Hermann should pick up the prevailing strong southerlies that accelerate across Biscayne as they bear away.

Interesting to see a split fleet though.
Sorry, I mixed tacking and gybing and didn't explain VMG as speed made good but yes he turned towards A Coruna on the North western tip of Spain before turning North again etc. Re the split, Dalin is very confident that he knows the Bay of Biscay area well from Figaro sailing in it so often and in every direction. Other's maybe not so familiar with it. Also Burton and others took a gamble with the forecasts, as although model's didn't agree there was a potential possibility for stronger winds to support a longer but faster route from further North. It looked like Burton had judged it well.

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The vast majority of ocean racing retirements occur due to collisions with UFOs. The simple fact is that if you hit a floating ISO container at 10kts, you’re going to do a lot of damage.
Sam Davies had a powerful demonstration of that when her boat stopped on impact with what may have been a container. There was discussion on Vendee Live weeks back about dagger boards possibly being a bit less susceptible to damage than foilers but in Sam's case I don't think her foils were damaged.
 
Vendee Globe 9pm update

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+12 and +24 Hr wind forecasts
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Rankings:
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Vendee Flash:


Sea Wolves:

Sea Wolves - Vendee Globe 2020 report - The FOIL to the Finish! Charlie? Boris? Louis? Thomas? Jean?​

 
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Sorry, I mixed tacking and gybing and didn't explain VMG as speed made good but yes he turned towards A Coruna on the North western tip of Spain before turning North again etc. Re the split, Dalin is very confident that he knows the Bay of Biscay area well from Figaro sailing in it so often and in every direction. Other's maybe not so familiar with it. Also Burton and others took a gamble with the forecasts, as although model's didn't agree there was a potential possibility for stronger winds to support a longer but faster route from further North. It looked like Burton had judged it well.

View attachment 543358

Sam Davies had a powerful demonstration of that when her boat stopped on impact with what may have been a container. There was discussion on Vendee Live weeks back about dagger boards possibly being a bit less susceptible to damage than foilers but in Sam's case I don't think her foils were damaged.
The red zone on the chart is the Cabo Finisterre Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) which controls traffic rounding the cape. He’s gybed around it.

You can cross a TSS at right angles, but you have to enter and exit it from the ends. He could have crossed it at right angles and gybed North in the inshore channel. But he couldn’t have entered it from the west and gybed north within the TSS. So he’s avoided it.

I’m interested to see how he crossed Biscay. Once he gybes and heads for the finish, he’s more or less dead down wind to the finish, so he’ll have to gybe across the wind and sail further than the rhumb line course to maximise VMG. Burton coming in from the west is on a broad reach, which is not a VMG point of sail. If your course is a broad reach, you just point directly to where you are going and your boat speed and VMG are equal.

They’re now at the point where strategic weather routing is largely irrelevant. It’s a sprint; the weather system they are in is the one they will sail to the finish. It’s now about tactics and ultimately boat speed.
 
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Marine Traffic is great but it's not going to help with live tracking for the Atlantic. I spotted a "yacht" crossing the Bay of Biscay. Where are the sails? Note the chopper on the helipad. This photo was taken at Valletta.

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Vendee Globe - Tweets from Jean Le Cam. Guard of Honour has been allowed at Sables d'Ollone.

This evening Jean retweeted this news:

Supported by Voiles et Voiliers, the mayor of Sables-d'Olonne has won his fight: there will finally be a guard of honor to welcome the Vendée Globe skippers. :thumright:

There is a lot we can miss without looking at French tweets and information. Here are more translations of tweets from Jean Le Cam and a video interview her refers to.

14 Hours ago:

8th this Tuesday morning, at 532NM from the leader, Jean is sailing in a sustained wind and is approaching Apicil ... If we take into account the compensation, Hubert may be the 1st general non-foiler. But everything can still be turned upside down ...

11 Hours ago:

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Live from # VG2020 in the presence of Yann Elies who asked Jean what his goal is: "My first goal is to cross the finish line. Damien and Giancarlo? We'll see ! The southern train tickles my buttocks, a little more and it can be okay

Also 11 hours ago:

{Fraud Alert} our social networks have been hacked If John offers you to win gifts, money and asks for your credit card number, don't do anything, it's not him!

9 Hours ago:

To find, Jean in video with the @VendeeGlobe . Hoping that the South train blows Hubert's buttocks to glean miles before Les Sables d'Olonne

 
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Vendee Globe - Tuesday highlights from VG plus additional short videos from skippers

This is VG's 2 min compilation. You may have seen some but not all of the clips. Boris talks with an aircraft.


Maxime Sorel shows us some of his green boat and the very smart dragon sails he has put up for the finish.
He also discusses the matter of his friend Armel Tripon in his faster boat and the weather ahead.



Yannick Bestaven has found it tough going all the way but is committed to giving it 100% to the end.


Way back in the South Atlantic, Manuel Cousin, who thought he was escaping the light winds in to a forecast 15 kts looks around at the near calm:

 
Vendee Globe - Wednesday 27th January 2021 - 0400 position update Top 3 within 320 nm of finish.

There were no official media updates to report and I won't cover the slow part of the race. This is just an interim update for the faster part of the race from positions 1 through 12. First the fleet overview without and with wind overlay. You can click on the images to view full size.

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Now the front of the fleet, the top nine. Yannick Bestaven is making 21 kts, Thomas Ruyant nearly 20 kts and Giancarlo Pedote 20 kts. Jean Le Cam is nearly making 18 kts and has reduced distance from the lead by 40 nm. Dalin has been making slower progress but seems to know what he is doing, almost as if he is teasing the others before sprinting home to the finish. Gripping stuff.
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Behind Benjamin (blue boat at the top right of centre), Maxime (highlighted green boat) is putting in a cracking effort assisted by his dragon sails, keeping his non-foiling boat ahead of Armel Tripon! Clarisse (blue boat, bottom left) is making her way across the high pressure at a decent speed. There was speculation on VG that she might have to wait out the storm and on Sea Wolves as to whether she would catch the system. It looks like the forecast has maybe changed somewhat. We can review that later.

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Rankings:
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Vendee Globe - Wednesday 27th January 2021 - 0400 position update Top 3 within 320 nm of finish.

There were no official media updates to report and I won't cover the slow part of the race. This is just an interim update for the faster part of the race from positions 1 through 12. First the fleet overview without and with wind overlay. You can click on the images to view full size.

View attachment 543397 View attachment 543398

Now the front of the fleet, the top nine. Yannick Bestaven is making 21 kts, Thomas Ruyant nearly 20 kts and Giancarlo Pedote 20 kts. Jean Le Cam is nearly making 18 kts and has reduced distance from the lead by 40 nm. Dalin has been making slower progress but seems to know what he is doing, almost as if he is teasing the others before sprinting home to the finish. Gripping stuff.
View attachment 543400

Behind Benjamin (blue boat at the top right of centre), Maxime (highlighted green boat) is putting in a cracking effort assisted by his dragon sails, keeping his non-foiling boat ahead of Armel Tripon! Clarisse (blue boat, bottom left) is making her way across the high pressure at a decent speed. There was speculation on VG that she might have to wait out the storm and on Sea Wolves as to whether she would catch the system. It looks like the forecast has maybe changed somewhat. We can review that later.

View attachment 543402View attachment 543404

Rankings:
View attachment 543401
I can’t fathom what Dalin is up to tucked in to the Galician shore like that. He’s in less pressure and not headed towards the finish. The further east he goes, the more he sails out of pressure.

A vague memory from racing around and across Biscay three times in the 90s; IIRC there’s a northerly current that sweeps round the bay something like 20-50 miles offshore. Can’t see it would be worth trying to find it in these boats; a couple of knots of set is irrelevant when you’re fooling in the high teens. That’s all I can think of; me, I’d be pointing directly for home and focussed on driving the wheels of the yacht. It’s a sprint race now; someone is going to win this tomorrow!

Has anyone read a plausible explanation of what he’s doing?
 
Vendee Globe - Dalin chooses his moment makes a direct dash. Burton continues his direct route.

Dalin waited until winds suited his sprint from the Spanish Coast to Les Sables d'Ollone. It's not a completely direct route though due to the winds. Burton already has a direct route to the finish. Herrmann had yet to make his move as of the 0800 but has now - see capture from 1100 below this one.
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It looks like race order will be maintained for the top three but Hermann and Bestaven each have a time allowance. Le Cam is too far out for a podium position but with time allowance could be first non-foiler.
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Rankings as of 1100:
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Battle of Biscay​

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Vendee Globe - Dalin chooses his moment makes a direct dash. Burton continues his direct route.

Dalin waited until winds suited his sprint from the Spanish Coast to Les Sables d'Ollone. It's not a completely direct route though due to the winds. Burton already has a direct route to the finish. Herrmann had yet to make his move as of the 0800 but has now - see capture from 1100 below this one.
View attachment 543448
It looks like race order will be maintained for the top three but Hermann and Bestaven each have a time allowance. Le Cam is too far out for a podium position but with time allowance could be first non-foiler.
View attachment 543459
Rankings as of 1100:
View attachment 543461

Battle of Biscay​

View attachment 543463

View attachment 543465
I get it now. It’s all about the hotter angle that Dalin can now sail, nothing to do with his knowledge of Biscay. He’s got less overall pressure, but he’s able to point higher, build apparent wind and get the boat up on its foils more efficiently.

It’s not been easy to see on the Vendée wind overlay which gives the impression of significantly less pressure on his route (the arrows are further apart) compared with the boats to the north. Watching the GRIB feed from theyr overlaid on a maritime chart, it’s easier to see. He’s on a perfect broad reach now with plenty enough breeze. Sorry, can’t post it; it’s behind a paywall.
 
Vendee Globe

Here is the official tracker. I find Alex's tracker better for more boats but this seems okay for the race finish, except that it's hard to see Herrmann's boat and the land looks like sea :lol:. The updates are supposed to be every 30 minutes now.
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This what I am showing as of 12:00am. JLC could move up 2 spots after his time relief.
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Easy to update when the new spreadsheet becomes available.
 

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