Menu
Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

Vendee Globe Race Victory in the Balance for Charlie Dalin

26th January 2021
Dalin’s latest generation Verdier design with its big foil should be fastest and the 37 year old who grew up in Le Havre, France is the line honours favourite. Dalin’s latest generation Verdier design with its big foil should be fastest and the 37 year old who grew up in Le Havre, France is the line honours favourite. Credit: Jean Marie Liot

Passing the latitude of Lisbon, Portugal this morning, Vendee Globe Race leader Charlie Dalin is in control of a very tight three-way fight at the moment, converging fast with Louis Burton (Bureau Vallée 2) who should be about 30 miles behind when they cross gybes. And Boris Herrmann (Seaexplorer-Yacht Club de Monaco) is some 37 miles behind Burton in third.

Clearly, in these conditions and in to the finish, weather and sea conditions being close to forecast, Dalin’s latest generation Verdier design with its big foil should be fastest and the 37-year-old who grew up in Le Havre, France is the line honours favourite.

But he needs to be more than 10 hours and 15 minutes ahead of Yannick Bestaven (Maître Coq IV) and six hours ahead of Herrmann, so every fraction of a knot that Dalin can find might prove vital, he has absolutely no latitude for small mistakes or failures during the next 48 hours to the finish line. Every mile gained just now at 19-20kts can compensate for a slower miles as the breeze eases closer to the finish line. In contrast, Burton has been slower overnight making just 12-13kts while Herrmann has been around 15-17kts.

Bestaven is 232 miles behind him. Do the math. Right now that is just enough for Dalin whereas he needs time and distance on ‘Der Schakal’ – Herrmann – who right now has his time on the race leader, on Burton and also his time (net 4hrs 15mins or call it 90 miles) differential on Bestaven.

Right now the two key weather problems are a transition zone off Cape Finisterre and that the last miles into Les Sables d’Olonne will be lighter, maybe just 10-12kts.

The forecasts do seem to show more breeze coming in in the north and so this finish is very, very finely balanced, Bestaven’s option may give him the extra wind he is seeking and the transition area is smoother offshore.

Meantime Alexia Barrier on TSE 4 My Planet and Ari Huusela on STARK crossed Cape Horn. Barrier passed at 2155hrs UTC and ‘Super Happy’ Huusela, the first sailor ever from the Nordic nations to race round solo, passed the landmark at 0119hrs. Jérémie Beyou crossed the equator back into the northern hemisphere at 0405hrs UTC and Isabelle Joschke has arrived safely in Salvador de Bahia, Brazil

Published in Vendee Globe
Afloat.ie Team

About The Author

Afloat.ie Team

Email The Author

Afloat.ie is Ireland's dedicated marine journalism team.

Have you got a story for our reporters? Email us here.

We've got a favour to ask

More people are reading Afloat.ie than ever thanks to the power of the internet but we're in stormy seas because advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. Unlike many news sites, we haven’t put up a paywall because we want to keep our marine journalism open.

Afloat.ie is Ireland's only full–time marine journalism team and it takes time, money and hard work to produce our content.

So you can see why we need to ask for your help.

If everyone chipped in, we can enhance our coverage and our future would be more secure. You can help us through a small donation. Thank you.

Direct Donation to Afloat button

The 2020/2021 Vendée Globe Race

A record-sized fleet of 33 skippers will start the ninth edition of the Vendée Globe: the 24,296 nautical miles solo non-stop round-the-world race from Les Sables d’Olonne in France, on Sunday, November 8 at 1302hrs French time/1202hrs TU and will be expected back in mid-January 2021.

Vendée Globe Race FAQs

Six women (Alexia Barrier, Clarisse Cremer, Isabelle Joschke, Sam Davies, Miranda Merron, Pip Hare).

Nine nations (France, Germany, Japan, Finland, Spain, Switzerland, Australia, and Great Britain)

After much speculation following Galway man Enda O’Coineen’s 2016 race debut for Ireland, there were as many as four campaigns proposed at one point, but unfortunately, none have reached the start line.

The Vendée Globe is a sailing race round the world, solo, non-stop and without assistance. It takes place every four years and it is regarded as the Everest of sailing. The event followed in the wake of the Golden Globe which had initiated the first circumnavigation of this type via the three capes (Good Hope, Leeuwin and Horn) in 1968.

The record to beat is Armel Le Cléac’h 74 days 3h 35 minutes 46s set in 2017. Some pundits are saying the boats could beat a sub-60 day time.

The number of theoretical miles to cover is 24,296 miles (45,000 km).

The IMOCA 60 ("Open 60"), is a development class monohull sailing yacht run by the International Monohull Open Class Association (IMOCA). The class pinnacle events are single or two-person ocean races, such as the Route du Rhum and the Vendée Globe.

Zero past winners are competing but two podiums 2017: Alex Thomson second, Jérémie Beyou third. It is also the fifth participation for Jean Le Cam and Alex Thomson, fourth for Arnaud Boissières and Jérémie Beyou.

The youngest on this ninth edition of the race is Alan Roura, 27 years old.

The oldest on this ninth edition is Jean Le Cam, 61 years old.

Over half the fleet are debutantes, totalling 18 first-timers.

The start procedure begins 8 minutes before the gun fires with the warning signal. At 4 minutes before, for the preparatory signal, the skipper must be alone on board, follow the countdown and take the line at the start signal at 13:02hrs local time. If an IMOCA crosses the line too early, it incurs a penalty of 5 hours which they will have to complete on the course before the latitude 38 ° 40 N (just north of Lisbon latitude). For safety reasons, there is no opportunity to turn back and recross the line. A competitor who has not crossed the starting line 60 minutes after the signal will be considered as not starting. They will have to wait until a time indicated by the race committee to start again. No departure will be given after November 18, 2020, at 1:02 p.m when the line closes.

The first boat could be home in sixty days. Expect the leaders from January 7th 2021 but to beat the 2017 race record they need to finish by January 19 2021.

Today, building a brand new IMOCA generally costs between 4.2 and €4.7million, without the sails but second-hand boats that are in short supply can be got for around €1m.

©Afloat 2020

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

dbsc mainbutton
Howth Yacht Club
Kinsale Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club
Royal Saint George Yacht Club

Featured Brokers

leinster sidebutton

Featured Associations

ICRA
isora sidebutton

Featured Webcams

Featured Events 2021

vdlr21 sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton
quantum sidebutton
watson sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
osm sidebutton
https://afloat.ie/resources/marine-industry-news/viking-marine

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
mansfield sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
wavelengths sidebutton
 

Please show your support for Afloat by donating