By 9.30 this morning, the Ultim Edmond de Rothschild should cross the finish line of the Route du Rhum, concluding a complex regatta for the trimarans, but not as complex as the one the Class40s are experiencing.
Out of the disturbances for over 24 hours, yesterday the flotilla of the first seven Class40s – which also includes IBSA – faced the Azores Islands passage, and are now descending in search of the trade winds, which are still missing. There are also those who have chosen to stop for a check: a perhaps obligatory decision, in particular for the third Italian in the race, Andrea Fornaro, with his Influence, who had a seal problem with the keel.
At dawn this morning, “the magnificent seven” chose to go up – and IBSA really had to change tack – to look for a little more wind, because in front of them there is an area of calm that could further slow down the race. After such a tiring week, a brief respite would seem due; instead, Alberto absolutely wants to run and not leave the leading group, by going to look for a little more wind. The trade wind: where is it hiding? The door seems to open a little further South, opposite the Canary Islands, and this tells us that we still need patience: at the moment Bona still needs to sail with a South-Westerly wind. Before engaging the trade winds from the east, it seems he will have to go through a calm area that “divides” the two meteorological systems.
At the 7 o’clock check, the Class40 IBSA appeared solidly and firmly in seventh position. The gap from the leaders is within ninety miles: it is as if – in the Class40 category – there was a regatta within a regatta, the first eight against the rest of the world. In the meantime, Alberto Bona remains almost silent compared to the rest of the fleet: he leaked a selfie with a smile and a bandage on his forehead, under a still leaden sky – which will soon change – aboard a tidy and trim boat which is still sailing close-hauled.
Trade winds, we are waiting…!