Global solo challenge 2023-2024

Achieving the dream

Around the world
Single-handed
Non-stop
By the three great capes
With a unique format
Budget friendly
Environmentally conscious
Starts in A Coruña from August 2023

Around the world
Single-handed
Non-stop
By the three great capes
With a unique format
Budget friendly
Environmentally conscious
In A Coruña from August 2023

Rankings

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Marco Nannini

In a previous post I explained how forecasts have a diminishing level of reliability as we move into the future. A 5 days forecast, from a sailor’s point of view, gives only a rough idea of what might happen. Forecasts for under 72 hours instead can be quite accurate. The highest level of uncertainty usually is found when there is the centre of a depression moving towards the location we are interested in. A slight delay or speed up of the low pressure system can bring radically different weathers and a more northerly or southerly route of the system can again change things by a wide margin. The best way to assess the stability or instability of a forecast is to compare different models. The more they converge the more reliable the forecast is. On the other hand, if they diverge caution is due. We compared the ECMWF, GFS and ICON-EU models showing Wind Gusts and Waves for Cole’s arrival on February 7th at 11:00 UTC (noon local time) and 23:00 UTC. Currently this looks like the most likely window for her arrival but things may change depending on her speed. The ECMWF certainly indicates some intense frontal activity by

Marco Nannini

Louis Robein contacted me during the night, he found the leg of one of his hydro-generators cracked, motor and propellor missing, possibly sheared off by a collision or failure of the unit. The other unit has some wiring issues so Louis is having to keep at bay the memories of his total power loss that forced him to stop in Hobart. Fortunately in Hobart he installed new batteries and changed the wiring so that there is no possibility of discharging the engine battery which had made it impossible for him to run the inboard to charge batteries in the Indian Ocean. He plans to work on the remaining generator after the oncoming low and either way sue the diesel to charge batteries. If he cannot fix reliably the remaining hydrogenerator he may have to use all his diesel to charge batteries to reach Cape Horn, there is no way back now for him or anywhere to stop and he needs to do his best to round the Horn and then assess whether he needs to stop, even just for refuelling. We look forward to hearing from Louis in the next few days and wishing him a resolution of the issue

Marco Nannini

Andrea Mura on Vento di Sardegna has finally managed to find the NE trade winds. His crossing of this area was particularly slow especially compared to when Philippe and Cole sailed through, although for example Cole found slow conditions in the south Atlantic tropical calms and Philippe, despite sailing a more direct route to A Coruna near the finish lost considerable time with a pockets of high pressure scattered around his route near the Azores high. It takes patience and concentration to sail through light airs, and can be mentally exhausting as a sailor has to deal with a sense of impotence. To the north of Andrea, Cole Brauer has dipped south to avoid the worst of the front coming through associated with a depression moving east, she is playing it safe with no need to take any unnecessary risk. Further south Riccardo Tosetto and Francois Gouin who had super slow tropical latitudes conditions should be about to break into the SE trade winds and gain pace. David Linger north of the Falklands reported winds of near 40 knots gusting 50 during the night, running with storm jib only, all is fine on board Koloa Maoli.

Marco Nannini

We had mentioned the likely arrival of a storm that would affect the are where David Linger is navigating. The storm, due tomorrow looks big and nasty and impossible for David to avoid. David has sailed west and he will be marginally protected from the building sea by the Falklands. His choice to go west rather than further north will also mean he will be in smaller waves compare what he would have otherwise found. David should expect winds averaging 40 knots and gusting well over 50. Waves will be 5 to 5.5 meters and it won’t be pleasant as David is on the continental shelf extending from Argentina and the Falklands where the sea depth will generate shorter and trickier waves. David will certainly be wary of the risk of further damage and will probably be extra cautious.

Marco Nannini

After suffering from rigging problems on February 21st Alessandro Tosetti on Aspra has been force to a long game of chess with the Pacific ocean weather systems. Unable to sail on starboard tack, Alessandro initially had to head north to find calmer waters and avoid the risk of dismasting due to the rolling of the boat and the shaking of the rig. With no option to make landfall anywhere he had to patiently wait for better and more favourable weather conditions. After several days of heading north-east he was finally able to set course to the west towards New Zealand hoping to reach Auckland. A couple of days ago, however, it became apparent that he would not be able to reach North Island before the arrival of a deep depression bringing strong and unfavourable winds, first from the north then from the south west. In coordination with RCC New Zealand, Alessandro altered course to reach the Chatham Islands and its only concrete dock at Waitangi Wharf where he could find shelter and let the storms blow past safely. Alessandro reached the remote and isolated islands and dock yesterday morning, the night in Europe. We wish to express our gratitude for

Marco Nannini

As long anticipated Cole Brauer has been able to avoid the light winds of the Azores high and slingshot east as if drifting in a roundabout. She’s now sailing on course at constant speeds above 10 knots average. This should bring her ETA back to the 6th of March. She still has a couple of gybes before the finish and the exact ETA will become easier to forecast as she speeds forward to A Coruna.

Marco Nannini

As we get closer and closer to the expected arrival date for Cole Brauer we can start to peek forward to the weather she may expect. Looking at a seven days forecast is generally only some sort of indication of how the weather may develop but the level of accuracy tends to be low. Another way to check the reliability of a forecast is to compare different global model, such as the American GFS and the European ECMWF. When the two models agree it can be an indication that the weather is quite likely to develop that way. When they disagree it usually means that there are still too many variables and the forecast must be taken with care as one or the other may be more accurate, or neither. What certainly struck me today is the fact that the GFS model today shows a deep winter storm forming which will be around Finisterre by the 7th of March. This could certainly become a problem, but it’s too early to tell, the European model depicts quite a different scenario. Certainly we will be posting updates on the developments of what at this stage is only a possibility, a large winter

Marco Nannini

Alessandro Tosetti has another 160 miles to sail to reach the relative shelter of Waitaingi Wharf on the Chatham Islands. The wind is currently on Aspra’s port tack where the rigging is all fine. The wind should go a lighter later in the New Zealand afternoon to allow Alessandro to gain to the south before the wind turns against him. He must ensure he does not find himself head to wind as he cannot tack upwind. Hopefully he will be able to reach Waitaingi in approximately 24-30 hours or by the afternoon, local time of the 2nd March. The storm will hit late on the 3rd or early 4th, first from the north then from the south west. We will follow up with more updates.

Marco Nannini

In a previous post I explained how forecasts have a diminishing level of reliability as we move into the future. A 5 days forecast, from a sailor’s point of view, gives only a rough idea of what might happen. Forecasts for under 72 hours instead can be quite accurate. The highest level of uncertainty usually is found when there is the centre of a depression moving towards the location we are interested in. A slight delay or speed up of the low pressure system can bring radically different weathers and a more northerly or southerly route of the system can again change things by a wide margin. The best way to assess the stability or instability of a forecast is to compare different models. The more they converge the more reliable the forecast is. On the other hand, if they diverge caution is due. We compared the ECMWF, GFS and ICON-EU models showing Wind Gusts and Waves for Cole’s arrival on February 7th at 11:00 UTC (noon local time) and 23:00 UTC. Currently this looks like the most likely window for her arrival but things may change depending on her speed. The ECMWF certainly indicates some intense frontal activity by

Marco Nannini

Louis Robein contacted me during the night, he found the leg of one of his hydro-generators cracked, motor and propellor missing, possibly sheared off by a collision or failure of the unit. The other unit has some wiring issues so Louis is having to keep at bay the memories of his total power loss that forced him to stop in Hobart. Fortunately in Hobart he installed new batteries and changed the wiring so that there is no possibility of discharging the engine battery which had made it impossible for him to run the inboard to charge batteries in the Indian Ocean. He plans to work on the remaining generator after the oncoming low and either way sue the diesel to charge batteries. If he cannot fix reliably the remaining hydrogenerator he may have to use all his diesel to charge batteries to reach Cape Horn, there is no way back now for him or anywhere to stop and he needs to do his best to round the Horn and then assess whether he needs to stop, even just for refuelling. We look forward to hearing from Louis in the next few days and wishing him a resolution of the issue

Marco Nannini

Andrea Mura on Vento di Sardegna has finally managed to find the NE trade winds. His crossing of this area was particularly slow especially compared to when Philippe and Cole sailed through, although for example Cole found slow conditions in the south Atlantic tropical calms and Philippe, despite sailing a more direct route to A Coruna near the finish lost considerable time with a pockets of high pressure scattered around his route near the Azores high. It takes patience and concentration to sail through light airs, and can be mentally exhausting as a sailor has to deal with a sense of impotence. To the north of Andrea, Cole Brauer has dipped south to avoid the worst of the front coming through associated with a depression moving east, she is playing it safe with no need to take any unnecessary risk. Further south Riccardo Tosetto and Francois Gouin who had super slow tropical latitudes conditions should be about to break into the SE trade winds and gain pace. David Linger north of the Falklands reported winds of near 40 knots gusting 50 during the night, running with storm jib only, all is fine on board Koloa Maoli.

Marco Nannini

We had mentioned the likely arrival of a storm that would affect the are where David Linger is navigating. The storm, due tomorrow looks big and nasty and impossible for David to avoid. David has sailed west and he will be marginally protected from the building sea by the Falklands. His choice to go west rather than further north will also mean he will be in smaller waves compare what he would have otherwise found. David should expect winds averaging 40 knots and gusting well over 50. Waves will be 5 to 5.5 meters and it won’t be pleasant as David is on the continental shelf extending from Argentina and the Falklands where the sea depth will generate shorter and trickier waves. David will certainly be wary of the risk of further damage and will probably be extra cautious.

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