May 28, 2012
Cessna Citation lights the fuse
At 02:00 GMT on Monday, Conrad Colman and Scott Cavanough scorched through the Global Ocean Race (GOR) Leg 5 bluQube Scoring Gate 420 miles south of Newfoundland netting maximum points for their Akilaria RC2 Class40, Cessna Citation.
As the GOR fleet leaders pick up the strong northerly breeze, speeds have been building with Colman and Cavanough polling averages of over 13 knots on Sunday night and hitting the scoring gate at over 16-knot averages as Cessna Citation finds her stride, sustaining the high speed and pulls away from the fleet building a 233-mile lead over Financial Crisis as the Kiwi-Australian duo pile eastwards.
In second place on the Italian-Slovak Class40, Financial Crisis, Marco Nannini and Sergio Frattaruolo climbed north before the wind went NNE, forcing them the south-east and they failed to find that extra gear until mid-morning on Monday, picking up speed averages to over ten knots, but have had to watch Cessna Citation add a massive 138 miles to their lead in the past 24 hours.
Meanwhile, Phillippa Hutton-Squire and Nick Leggatt in third with Phesheya-Racing were pushing average speeds over 12 knots before the South African duo lost a second spinnaker and the Dutch team of Nico and Frans Budel made averages of over 11 knots with Sec. Hayai until losing the best wind on Monday.
“Outside has been reminiscent of the Southern Ocean today,” reported Nick Leggatt from Phesheya-Racing on Monday morning and the grey, bleak surroundings matched his mood as an infected cut on his elbow and a destroyed spinnaker soured the atmosphere on the South African Class40. Leggatt has no recollection of how his elbow was injured: “We’ve been thrown about on this race so many times that cuts and bruises are regarded as the norm and are generally ignored,” he explains. “And so it was with the small cut on my elbow, but after several days it began to swell and become quite painful.”
Leggatt and Hutton-Squire contacted Dr Claire Bailey – a former crewmate of Leggatt’s from his time onboard Steve Fossett’s Playstation. “Within minutes of our emailing her she had prescribed a course of medication from our first aid kit, as well as offering advice on how best to protect my elbow over the next few days,” he continues. “Just 24 hours after contacting her, my arm already feels a lot better, but it is still annoying.”
However, a second setback could not be fixed with antibiotics as the team’s A4 followed their A2 into the spinnaker graveyard: “At this rate we’ll soon have no sails left!” says an exasperated Leggatt of the depletion in light wind and downwind sails. “It seems that the destroyed spinnakers have reached the end of their usable lives and this final leg of the Global Ocean Race was just a step too far for them,” he concludes. “Both of them were old sails that had good shape, but I guess they have just been pushed too hard for too long.”
There is, though, a bright side: “We’ve been able to make good use of the Gulf Stream for most of today,” Leggatt continues. “But the wind has shifted to the north-north-east and the seas have become quite horrible, pushing us bodily towards the south east and out of the Gulf Stream. Right now life is extremely uncomfortable onboard with a grey, overcast sky, rough seas breaking right over the boat and a cool wind blowing,” says Leggatt. “Not a fun place to be.”
Trailing the South Africans by 183 miles on Monday afternoon, the father-and-son duo on Sec. Hayai in fourth place were on good form: “On Hayai is everything is OK,” confirms Frans Budel. “We found our speeds and we had a nice day of hard sailing,” reported Budel late on Sunday night. “Now the wind will drop a bit and it will be back after Monday,” he predicted correctly as speeds dropped from over ten knots to just below two knots on Monday morning. “The wind went from 15 knots to five knots and it was very difficult to keep the boat moving,” wrote Budel in a brief email on Monday afternoon. “We’re now sailing upwind, keeping as high as possible to the east and I hope our decision to keep south will take us out of the bad weather in the next few days.”
“We’ll try to avoid the worst of the two coming depression and when they’re gone, we’ll be back on course to Les Sables again,” advises the Dutch skipper. While the wind disappears temporarily, the Budels are making good use of their time: “We’ve practised our MOB drills this afternoon,” says Frans. “Not for real, but we pushed the button of the NKE instruments and then went through and discussed the drill,” he confirms. “It’s always good to practice these things….you never know what might happen,” concludes Budel wisely.
Ahead of the four Class40s, the weather scenario in mid-North Atlantic is for strong conditions. Nick Leggatt explains the prospects: “Ahead of us a gale is forecast to develop with winds to 40 knots,” says the South African skipper of a low pressure that will sweep through the fleet in the next 20-30 hours as the double-handed teams reach the middle point of the leg from Charleston to Les Sables d’Olonne. “A long way to our south-west the second tropical storm of the season has already formed, still a few days before the hurricane season officially opens on 1 June,” he adds. “This storm, Tropical Storm Beryl, is still somewhere near Florida, but is also forecast to eventually track north east, eventually becoming an extra-tropical depression, and bringing an added dimension of complexity to the weather of the North Atlantic.”
GOR leaderboard 15:00 GMT 28/5/12:
1. Cessna Citation DTF 1904 13.8kts
2. Financial Crisis DTL 233 10.2kts
3. Phesheya-Racing DTL 376 8.5kts
4. Sec. Hayai DTL 559 4.5kts
June 11, 2012
The Dutch duo on Sec. Hayai take fourth overall in the GOR
At 21:54:44 GMT (23:54:44 local) on Sunday, the fourth and final double-handed, Global Ocean Race (GOR) Class40, Sec. Hayai, crossed the finish line off Les Sables d’Olonne, France, with the Dutch father-and-son duo of Nico and Frans Budel taking fourth place in Leg 5 and fourth place overall.
Arriving off Les Sables d’Olonne after 22 days 08 hours 24 minutes and 44 seconds of racing from Charleston, USA, the Dutch duo were quick to light an orange smoke flare in celebration as they passed between the GOR’s Committee Boat and the Nouch Sud buoy, swiftly snuffed their spinnaker and turned into the channel leading to Port Olona and a large and happy reception committee made up of the Budel-family waiting on the Vendée Globe pontoon.
As his children swarmed over the moored Class40, Frans Budel described Leg 5: “The whole leg was a little bit tough going from one gale to the next, but we enjoyed it,” confirms the Dutch co-skipper. “But sometimes we had a lot of windless areas, so it was a big challenge,” he adds. “This was my first Atlantic crossing and I never believed I would do it and it’s an immense feeling to be here.”
The Sec. Hayai GOR campaign has been an example of tenacity, determination and willpower as the Budel family have refused to buckle under setbacks that would have scuppered many other offshore racing projects. Nico Budel raced in GOR Leg 1 with Dutch co-skipper, Ruud van Rijsewijk, but following the start of Leg 2 from Cape Town racing with his 41-year-old son, Frans, Sec. Hayai dismasted on the first night at sea off the Cape of Good Hope.
Disappointed but undeterred, the Budels returned to Cape Town unassisted, ordered a new carbon mast from Southern Spars and a new sail wardrobe from North Sails and despite retiring from Leg 2 and missing Leg 3 through the Pacific Ocean, 72-year-old Nico Budel sailed Sec. Hayai single-handed to the Leg 3-4 stopover in Punta del Este and re-joined the GOR fleet, sailing Leg 4 with fellow Dutchman, Erik van Vuuren. However, the Dutch drama wasn’t over and Sec. Hayai pulled into Fortaleza, Brazil, two weeks into the leg from Uruguay to Charleston as Budel was required urgently in Holland.
With lightning speed, the Budel’s contacted Van Vuuren’s girlfriend, Yvonne Beusker, and as soon as the GOR Race Committee was satisfied that Beusker had the correct sailing CV and safety qualifications, she flew direct to Brazil and Sec. Hayai spent minimal time suspended from racing and re-joined the GOR fleet.
As a sailing team, the Budel family have proven constantly that they can overcome significant setbacks and the Leg 5 partnership clearly worked: “There may be a next time, but I’ll have to discuss it with my wife first!” says Frans. “We may sail together again, but it depends on Nico as he likes to sail solo.” As Nico Budel moved from one family group to another along the wide, wooden pontoon, he paused to reflect on the 4,000-mile voyage with his son: “He taught me a lot and I hope he learnt a lot from me,” said the grinning Dutchman. “Solo sailing is my passion and it always will be,” he adds. “There is a huge difference between sailing double-handed and sailing solo and sometimes it’s great to be with someone else, but personally, solo sailing just suits me.”
Meanwhile, the Budel’s four-year-old Akilaria, is in good shape and ready to return to Holland. “The boat was perfect,” says Frans. “The first time we got 40 knots of wind, Nico was concerned that we must just hang on and survive the gale, but we found out, two or three times in the gales, that she can sail in 40 knots with no problems, he explains. “The boat really is very strong.”
While the four double-handed teams relax and recover with family, friends and sponsors, the next official engagement is the GOR Prize Giving on Saturday 16 June at the Club House de Port Olona hosted by La Ville des Sables d’Olonne.
Overall GOR 2011-12 ranking and points:
GOR leaderboard at 02:00 GMT 10/6/12:
1. Cessna Citation 17d 22h 50m 14s (162 points)
2. Financial Crisis 19d 01h 19m 48s (132 points)
3. Phesheya-Racing 21d 09h 10m 21s (96 points)
4. Sec. Hayai 22d 08h 24m 44s (42 points)
Buckley Systems RTD
Campagne de France RTD
June 17, 2012
Final Prize Giving of the GOR 2011-12
Separated momentarily from their Class40s, the Global Ocean Race (GOR) teams attended the final, official event of the GOR 2011-12 in Les Sables d’Olonne and joined 150 guests at the event’s prize giving held in the town’s Salle Audubon on Boulevard Pasteur in the middle of Les Sable’s old town on Saturday evening.
For Leg 5 from Charleston to Les Sables d’Olonne, trophies were presented by Yves Roucher, Stéphane Tournade and Nathalie Fougere from the mayor’s office and for the overall prizes for the entire 32,000-mile circumnavigation, each team was presented with stainless steel, chromed sculptures by the Charleston artist, Fred Moore, depicting Class40 sails with the distinctive orange flat-top mainsail unique to GOR Category 0 boats (see GOR Leg 5 and overall ranking below).
Josh Hall, Race Director of the GOR, opened proceedings by thanking the town of Les Sables d’Olonne; the Class40 Association; the Capitainerie of Port Olona and Sports Nautiques Sablais: “We’ve had a very warm welcome here in beautiful Les Sables d’Olonne and we’re very proud to finish this edition of the GOR in such a famous sailing town,” commented Hall. “I also think the GOR competitors and Race Organisation should thank themselves,” he added. “This race is all about people,” Hall explained. “It’s a race run by sailors for sailors and it’s a race that has to thank – on behalf of the organisers and the skippers – all the families, the children, the sponsors and the friends and supporters who came down to the pontoons in the stopovers to help the teams,” said the Race Director. “I think we can be really, really proud of the impact that the race and the individual teams have had around the world, so thank you all very much.”
Hall went onto read messages of congratulations to Cessna Citation from the Prime Minister of New Zealand, the Rt. Hon. John Key, and from the Commodore of the Royal Cape Yacht Club in Cape Town for Phesheya-Racing (see below for the messages) before handing over to Stéphane Tournade, the local official responsible for all marine events in Les Sables: “We’re very proud to host the Global Ocean Race here,” said Tournade. “It’s very special as Class40 have their Head Quarters here and having a round-the-world race arriving in Les Sables is normal for us as hosts of the Vendée Globe,” he added. “We have to discuss the next edition of the GOR, but we’re very keen on having the event back here,” he confirmed. “Thank you for coming and congratulations and we’re waiting for you to come back with the race again,” concluded Tournade.
In a special award, Phillippa Hutton-Squire of Phesheya-Racing was presented with the overall Spirit of the GOR Award and received a Luminox Yachting Countdown Timer from the GOR’s Timekeeping Sponsor. Two further Luminox Yachting Countdown Timers were awarded to Conrad Colman of Cessna Citation for winning the Leg 5 Luminox Photo Competition and Frans Budel of Class40 Sec. Hayai left the prize giving stage with a Countdown Timer for the GOR Spirit of Leg 5 Award.
New Zealand skipper, Conrad Colman and his Australian co-skipper, Scott Cavanough returned to the stage to collect two Luminox Colormark Watches for the bluQube 24-hour Run Prize having hit the highest average speed in Leg 5 with Cessna Citation at 339.2nm over 24 hours as the duo shot through the bluQube Scoring Gate in mid-North Atlantic, although this phenomenal speed falls short of Colman’s Leg 2 24-hour run of 359nm.
Race Committee member, Alan Green, presented Phillippa Hutton-Squire and Nick Leggatt of Phesheya-Racing with the Cape Horn Navigation Award for submitting the most accurate ETA at the world’s southernmost cape when 1,000 miles west of the landmark, an award that included brass sculptures and membership to the Royal Institute of Navigation in Kensington, London.
For the second time in the GOR, the Seahorse Magazine and www.thedailysail.com Media Prize was split between two Class40s with Frans Budel from Sec. Hayai and Nick Leggatt from Phesheya-Racing winning a year’s subscription to Seahorse Magazine and www.thedailysail.com for the high quality of the video footage, text and images recorded on board during the North Atlantic leg and for media coverage in their home countries.
In another split from the normal format of previous GOR prize giving ceremonies, the Garmin Navigation Award was shared between Scott Cavanough of Cessna Citation and Sergio Frattaruolo from Financial Crisis with the two GOR 2011-12 skippers and two competitors for the GOR 2013-14 accepting a handheld Garmin eTrex 30 GPS unit each to – as the GOR’s Race Director commented – “help you find your way to the next GOR in 2013”.
Having driven direct to the prize giving from Austria, the team from the GOR sponsor Celox Sailing, including Gottfried Poessl and Peter Fabrowski, also presented two special prizes: “We have followed the race closely throughout the GOR,” explained Gottfried Poessl. “Every month we run a competition with our customers, clients, friends and employees and asked them to vote for the best boat in the GOR and the best sailor,” he added. “We know that the budgets for the teams are small and with the race now over that their pockets are now empty,” said Poessl. “So we decided to give €2,000 to each winner,” he explained, awarding the two prizes to a delighted Marco Nannini of Financial Crisis for the best boat and to Phillippa Hutton-Squire for the best sailor. “Next time, we’re in the game for the GOR 2013, so the Celox Sailing team will be fighting hard for the best boat and the best sailor award!”
Finally, in recognition of their skill, knowledge and judgement throughout the GOR, the event’s Race Directors; Sylvie Viant, Alan Green and Peter Cockayne were invited on stage to receive a special, additional, engraved Fred Moore sculpture for their service to the race and the teams.
With the final official event of the GOR completed, the four Class40s are heading home after the nine-month circumnavigation. Phesheya-Racing and Financial Crisis are heading to the Solent; Sec. Hayai is heading for the Budel’s homeport in Holland and Cessna Citation is sailing to Lorient – Conrad Colman’s home town in Europe - at the invitation of the town’s mayor to celebrate a local sailor winning a round-the-world race before continuing to the Solent for corporate sailing.
Messages of congratulations to the teams:
To Cessna Citation from the Rt. Hon. John Key, Prime Minister of New Zealand: “Congratulations on your win in the Global Ocean Race along with your co-skipper Scott Cavanough. This is a remarkable achievement, and spending 150 days at sea shows the high level of endurance and perseverance that you both have. Sailing is a true Kiwi pastime and it’s great that you have been able to take your passion for being on the ocean to such a high level. I see you have more global circumnavigations planned, and I’d like to wish you all the best with these. I’ll be watching your future success with interest.”
To Phesheya-Racing from Dale Kushner, Commodore of the Royal Cape Yacht Club, Cape Town: “The product of your focus, determination and seamanship over the last nine months of racing have not only in the achievement of having successfully and safely completed the Global Ocean Race but has also resulted in Phillippa’s first circumnavigation and Nick’s third – an achievement shared by a few. Phesheya’s campaign of promoting global ocean racing to our local South African amateurs and formally disadvantaged sailors remains a shared objective of the Royal Cape Yacht Club and we will continue to promote and support the aims and objectives of your campaign going forward.”
To the GOR from Dale Kushner, Commodore of the Royal Cape Yacht Club, Cape Town: “The Royal Cape Yacht Club hereby extends its sincere compliments to you and your team in having successfully concluded the 2011-12 Global Ocean Race campaign. Your continued dedication towards the success of the GOR and your commitment and unfailing support towards its competitors is truly matchless. You have made your dreams a determined reality and now you find yourself allowing others to reach theirs. The RCYC remains proud to be partnered with the GOR and we look forward to having the next fleet in Cape Town.”
GOR Leg 5 ranking:
1. Cessna Citation 17d 22h 50m 14s
2. Financial Crisis 19d 01h 19m 48s
3. Phesheya-Racing 21d 09h 10m 21s
4. Sec. Hayai 22d 08h 24m 44s
Buckley Systems RTD
Campagne de France RTD
GOR overall ranking after five legs:
1. Cessna Citation: 150d 02h 59m 39s; Av. SOG 8.96kts; best 24hr 359.1nm (162 points)
2. Financial Crisis: 158d 13h 28m 03s; Av SOG 8.46kts; best 24hr 301.3nm (132 points)
3. Phesheya-Racing: 168d 13h 15m 41s; Av. SOG 8.04kts; best 24hr 277.9nm (96 points)
4. Sec. Hayai: Legs 1, 4 and 5
Buckley Systems RTD
Campagne de France RTD
Guests at the GOR Leg 5 Prize Giving included: Muriel Robin (Secretary Class40); Coralie Rassinoux (Service Communication Les Sables d’Olonne); Mark Blomfield; Edita Filadelfiova (Slovak Embassy, Paris); Di and Johnny Hutton-Squire; Mike Thrower; Paul and Sue Peggs; Maja Strakova; Ella Connolly; Frédéric Meunier (MC-TEC); Marco Lefebvre (V1D2); Lorraine Allison (bluQube); Gottfried Poessl and Peter Fabrowski (Celox Sailing); David and Abby Thomson; Jenny Amouraben-Launay (Ouest-France); Carine Baran (Les Sables Infos); Jean-Pierre Giraud; Julien Zajac; Duff; Myrna and Jolanda Budel; Patrick and Michelle Conway; Yvonne Beusker; Tom and Joek Boeke; Guy Dumas; Mark Featherstone; John and Liz Mansell; Salvo Mirabella; Marc Lombard; Alessandro di Benedetto