07 November 2022

In Saint-Malo the expected weather disturbance is taking its course, and while in Southern Europe the sun is still shining, the depression engages the North, freeing the energy accumulated by much warmer seas than the seasonal average. Now it is evident that starting on Sunday would have been madness: with 20-25 knots of wind from the west it would have been possible, but the latest 48-hour weather reports actually showed much more difficult conditions in conjunction with the early hours of the race. A very active cold front, with average winds of around 40 knots and gusts close to 60, is accompanied by a heavy sea, up to 7-metre high, created by tropical storm Martin. And it is above all the timing of the phenomenon that is making the situation critical and that it would not have left any possible alternative route to flee south and get to safety.

Today the tape must be rewound, and we are again at -2 from the start. The village has been closed yesterday afternoon, as scheduled; the press room is working, with only part of the journalists remaining on site: there is much more time for sailors to concentrate and prepare. Yesterday, Alberto took a day off: recharging the batteries will prove to be important.

The decision to delay the start was perfect, because Wednesday, at 2:15 pm, there will be a real start and a real race, not survival. Sailing upwind at 25 knots: just enough to make the competition immediately powerful, and a “wider”, less extreme direction with respect to the wind. And then, the cyclone of the Azores, the one that will allow us to run: the cyclone is reforming itself, it’s consolidating, and it’s very good news, because it is a matter of passing quickly the Bay of Biscay, moving south, and hooking it. 

In short, we are again “on track”, talking about strategy and speed, and not about ports where to take shelter!

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