If it were a cycling race we might say that the breakaway started a little too early, but it is an ocean race and timing matters little, not least because every mile of advantage built up keeps the mood a little higher. And a skipper who races solo if he has the right charge feels less fatigue, is more responsive and ready for adjustments, less insecure in tactical choices. Every mile of advantage accumulated is like a vitamin that gives strength and induces courage. Ambrogio Beccaria is first and in control of the fleet in this second leg of the Mini Transat among the series, second only to the first of the prototypes. It is hard to imagine a better scenario when the Minis are now heading for the true halfway point.
The tactical choice of Felix De Navacelle (read it HERE) of going far south, which used to worry Ambrose’s supporters, did not prove successful, and Beccaria’s direct competitor for the final victory is now detached by 74 miles, with a distance that is a bit of a rubber band but never falls below 55. Between the two, however, there is no more lateral separation, meaning that right now De Navacelle does not have great options for attack by sailing in the same wind, and with the same boat, as the Italian skipper. The same can be said for Nicolas D’Estais, another direct competitor, who is 89 miles behind instead. Geomag and Beccaria are among others, at the last survey, the fastest in the fleet.
Ambrose has kept sufficiently detached from the anticyclone over the past 48 hours and is now sailing in a strong and stable trade wind flow that will accompany it for several days. It has a constant pace of 220-250 miles in the 24 hours, which means it consistently sails at an average of 10 knots.
Predictable in the coming days is a continuation of the edging on the micro rotations of the Trade Wind, which will, however, tend to be more and more stable giving good VMG on both edges.
The Mini Transat, however, is far from closed, 1,500 miles to go is a long way, the mountain to climb is still very high also because fatigue and material stress will take over and these accumulated miles of advantage will be crucial in a few days.
Matteo Sericano among the protos and Marco Buonanni will be forced to stop at Cape Verde to try to repair broken rudders. Daniele Nanni among the series is 29th, Luigi Dubini 34th, Alessio Campriani 53rd. Among the Protos, where Frenchman François Jambou is firmly in the lead, Luca Rosetti is 17th.