Sadly, French solo sailor Thomas Coville on his trimaran Sodeb’o has once again dropped significantly behind the pace necessary for him to set a new round world record for a circumnavigation. Struggling to get past Recife, the most easterly point of South America, he is significantly behind where Francis Joyon was at this time of his voyage.
A number of things are going against him at the moment, and it looks as though it could be a race right to the finish.
Recently, he had a collision with what one can only imagine was a pilot whale, leaving some damage, but not enough to stop him continuing. In the last week he had to effect a repair to Sodebo’s outhaul. As of Friday he had a 322-mile deficit, which, of course, is not impossible to catch up.
The Doldrums, or ITCZ, are the next hurdle, and how he transits these will make a great difference to his chances. It is hard to tell from the satellite wind radar images just what sort of passage Sodeb’o will have through the Doldrums. The worst is on each side of the equator and Sodeb’o should be through around 600 miles from where he was on Friday.
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