Vendee Globe Race and It's Going to Be a WILD One

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guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Topic Author's Original Post - Nov 10, 2012 - 10:31pm PT
Nineteen of the 20 skippers entered for the seventh edition of the Vendée Globe solo race around the world took the start line of the 24,048 miles, three months circumnavigation race at 1302hrs local time off Les Sables d’Olonne, France today.

The Vendee single handed, nonstop race has begun. This is an epic event and one I consider the most challenging endeavor in the world today. Rocket fast high tech boats, pushed to the limit and sometimes beyond, into some of the nastiest and almost unbelievable conditions you could ever imagine. Three months of driving to the max, solo, living on the edge so to speak. Keeping the boat together and intact is the key and with the number of boats and talent there will be some epic adventures.

http://www.vendeeglobe.org/en/



Prod

Trad climber
Nov 10, 2012 - 10:34pm PT
Ever read this book Guido?

http://www.amazon.com/Strange-Voyage-Crowhurst-Nicholas-Tomalin/dp/0070650845

Pretty good.

Prod.
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 10, 2012 - 10:35pm PT
Yes and it is.
SCseagoat

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
Nov 10, 2012 - 11:24pm PT
Vendee time....yahoooooo...the screaming meanies start up again. Just watching sometimes makes me seasick. How they keep those boats together is beyond me.


Susan
Ghost

climber
A long way from where I started
Nov 10, 2012 - 11:34pm PT
The Vendee is the real thing. It makes solo winter climbing in the Himalaya look lightweight.

Anybody looking for a good backgrounder should check out "Godforsaken Sea" by Derek Lundy. (http://www.amazon.com/Godforsaken-Sea-Through-Worlds-Dangerous/dp/0385720009/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1352608232&sr=8-2&keywords=vendee+globe);

Every time I think of the Vendee, I remember this old saying...

"Beyond 40 degrees south, there is no law. Beyond 50 degrees south, there is no god."
The Alpine

climber
Nov 11, 2012 - 12:01am PT


SCseagoat

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
Nov 11, 2012 - 01:25am PT
No^^^^^^!!!!! What a way to sail an Open 60....Sick Sick


Susan
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Nov 11, 2012 - 01:49am PT
How does one go three months with no sleep?
SalNichols

Big Wall climber
Richmond, CA
Nov 11, 2012 - 07:08am PT
They actually work with physiologists to determine their long term sleep patterns. They have great autopilots, and except for sail changes they don't spend a hell of a lot of time on deck.
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 11, 2012 - 12:29pm PT
And now there are 19 boats as Marc Guillemot on Safran retired when his keel fell off. Ouch! Better now than later. Question is did he hit something or was it a structural failure?

Hugo Boss at start
Hugo Boss at start
Credit: guido
Alex Thomson, Hugo Boss          Sealaunay photo
Alex Thomson, Hugo Boss Sealaunay photo
Credit: guido
Hugo Boss smokin it!                Sealaunay photo
Hugo Boss smokin it! Sealaunay photo
Credit: guido
Working the bow on an ocean going rocket ship-Alex Thomson           S...
Working the bow on an ocean going rocket ship-Alex Thomson Sealaunay photo
Credit: guido
Brandon-

climber
The Granite State.
Nov 11, 2012 - 12:31pm PT
OK, I'm ignorant.

Is the race strictly wind driven, or can the vessels use their motors when becalmed?
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 11, 2012 - 12:34pm PT
Wind it is.
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Nov 11, 2012 - 01:28pm PT
And is there no end to the money that can be spent? A rhetorical question,
obviously. I do find it fascinating and all but it is also mildly repugnant,
or is that republican? It would be more interesting to me if they were
sailing a single design.
BooDawg

Social climber
Butterfly Town
Nov 11, 2012 - 02:00pm PT
Innovation comes when people try new designs.

Are there any women skippers in the race? Or are women too smart for such shenanigans? Or what?
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 11, 2012 - 02:03pm PT
Actually I think it is more interesting that they are not sailing the same design. The tech leap in these boats is astronomical and would be constrained by a one-design criteria. The Vendee sailors are at the top of the class, period. You race a lighter but faster boat and you risk the possibility of crash and burn.

Three, unrelenting months of intense pushing of man and boat to the limit is hard to fathom, no pun intended. Take a close look at some of the designs on the site-fascinating stuff hey what?

Get back to work in your garden Reilly!

Yes Boodawg- The beautiful Ms Samatha Davies on Saveol. Her second Vendee and she did quite well the last race with a 4th I think.
Prod

Trad climber
Nov 11, 2012 - 02:05pm PT
Looks like there is a woman in the field. Samantha Daves.

Prod.
johnkelley

climber
Anchorage Alaska
Nov 11, 2012 - 03:16pm PT
Three months? The winner will do it in close to 70 days. If you want to see a bunch of the same boats race check out the mini transat. It's from France to Brazil, around 4,300 miles single hand. Not a one design race but close.
BASE104

Social climber
An Oil Field
Nov 11, 2012 - 04:20pm PT
From the reports it sounded like Guillemot hit something.

Have you or any of your sailing buddies ever hit anything Joe?

These boats are incredible. They aren't really built to be safe, they are built to haul ass. I was watching a sailing DVD the other day and a guy talked about having a spinnaker and all of his sails out in solid 50 knot winds in the southern ocean. These boats are built to plane or surf downwind. with the tiny moment of the keels, they must lose a lot of leeway on any kind of reach.

Since so much of he race is in the southern ocean, with a fairly predictable weather pattern, most of the race is downwind, although a furious wind. Most boats would get overtaken by those big waves, but these boats are so fast that they can go over them.

The problem is that they are so beamy and flat that if they capsize, they can turtle and stay that way.

Sailing races are huge among the French. Lots of sponsorship money. In the U.S. there is pretty much Redbull or nothing.

--spoken by a total bluewater idiot...
Gene

climber
Nov 11, 2012 - 04:24pm PT
Have you or any of your sailing buddies ever hit anything Joe?

Does a reef in the Philippines count? Long story.

g
BASE104

Social climber
An Oil Field
Nov 11, 2012 - 06:26pm PT
PM me. I am looking at boats right now. My head is all full of prismatic coefficients and other stuff that I am in kind of a paralyzed state.

The Vendee Globe is a historically dangerous race. I have a big coffee table book on the great races, and didn't they change the route a little in order to keep them from going so far south that they got into ice problems?

The route around the world can be made shorter by going to a really high latitude. Danger doesn't slow down the competitors a whit. It has to be enforced by race rules.

I think everyone has probably seen a picture of the BOC or Vendee Globe boats capsized in crazy weather with their twin rudders pointing into the air.

Even the big non-solo race has fatalities from man overboard. I have read of some accounts of them not even knowing someone was missing until somebody noticed. Too late in those cold waters.

Whatever became of the America's Cup? It used to be a big deal, then they started cheating the rules by sailing catamarans and stuff. Then it lost its following.
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