Duos in Globe 40 Round Cape Horn
Sailing in the fifth leg of the Globe 40 race, the five remaining doublehanded Class 40s have just finished another marathon leg of ocean racing and arrived in Ushuaia, Argentina. Beginning this fifth of eight legs in Pape’ete, Tahiti, on November 26, the fleet sailed a very demanding leg that would take them from the tropics’ southeast trade winds all the way down to the Roaring Forties and the Furious Fifties before rounding the notorious Cape Horn that exists seemingly at the bottom of the Earth. With winds ranging from a large ridge of high pressure with sub-1-knot boatspeeds to beating into tropical trade winds to running in depressions with up to 50 knots of breeze — and almost everything in between — the fleet has been thoroughly tested along the route.
The winner of the fifth leg was the Japanese entry Milai, skippered by Japanese sailor Masa Suzuki. He sailed this leg (and will sail the next one) with French female Figaro sailor Estelle Greck. The coed team managed to win the race to the breeze. They were the first to sail out of the light-wind transition zone and reach the new breeze down south. Managing to escape from their rivals and then pull away, Milai built up a solid cushion of more than 140 miles and enjoyed the luxury of cruising to a comfortable leg victory. The win was Milai’s second in a row and third in five legs of the race thus far.
Second place in this leg, but still leading the overall points ranking, is the Dutch duo of Frans Budel and Ysbrand Endt on Sec Hayai. They finished about 12 hours behind Milai after more than 20 days of racing. Third place in this leg and in the rankings is the American boat AMHAS, with Americans Micah Davis and Brian Harris on board. Docking at around the same time Argentina won the World Cup on Sunday, the Americans received a warm and festive greeting. American entry Gryphon Solo II, skippered by Joe Harris with Italian Roger Junet, managed to complete an impressive comeback to secure fourth place ahead of the Canadian entry Whiskey Jack.
After a couple of weeks in Ushuaia, the fleet of five doublehanded Class 40s will sail their sixth leg from Argentina up to Recife, Brazil, beginning on January 5. Follow the race at www.globe40.com.
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