Jules Verne attempt currently 21hrs ahead of record
In her attempt on the Jules Verne Trophy, the giant trimaran Groupama 3 crossed the virtual route of Orange II (the catamaran which set a record of 50 days in 2005), at around 1800 UT with a total lead of some 530 miles, which is a little over 21 hours at the current record pace.
By hooking onto the low ahead of them and adopting a passage across the southern edge of a vast Australian high pressure system, Groupama 3 will hopefully be able to kick up her heels again to achieve average speeds in excess of thirty knots. Franck Cammas and his crew should therefore follow a course parallel to that of Orange II as far as Tasmania, that is after a slight climb around Australia, a long curve towards 54° South.
The only uncertainty about this scenario, which otherwise looks set to boost the giant trimaran’s lead over the maxi catamaran is a NW’ly disturbance which will create a vast cloud mass under which the wind will make a clear shift back to the West, where conditions will alternate between light patches and gusts. Though Groupama 3 is managing to remain ahead of this active but degenerating front, it should be able to rack up some very good days towards the end of the week.
Keep up with her progress here