Mike Golding looks at how the Open 60 fleet is doing, and foresees some opportunities for Dee Caffari and Steve White

After starting The Artemis Transat yesterday from the HMS Argyll, this morning Mike Golding gives us an overview of the first 24 hours of the race.

‘I told everyone I would start The Artemis Transat and I did, although I was at the wrong end of the line!

‘The start was amazing and I thought everyone was right on the money and very disciplined. It was almost like a dinghy start and not a transocean race.

‘Away from the start it fairly quickly set up in a predictable leading group with the exception ofArmel Le Cleac’h(Brit Air), who did better than I thought. They went out into quite light reaching conditions and it was a matter of keeping the pressure on overnight.

‘This morning we can see that the lead group has tended to push further to the south of the Great Circle route.Sam Davies(Roxy) had a dodgy start but she has pushed up and is now ahead ofDee Caffari(Aviva).

‘Marc Guillemot(Safran) is not doing as well as I thought but otherwise the fleet is pretty much organising itself as I would have expected.

‘Over the next 24 hours we can expect to see more light reaching and downwind conditions. The winds are light north-easterly, steadily going east and in the next 12 hours will see the boats gybing. There will be more breeze in the north so boats there in the next 48 hours should see more advantage Looking at the position charts this morning, it looks like Dee Caffari might have an opportunity.

‘Interestingly,Steve White(Spirit of Weymouth) is at the north of the pack so could also reap some benefits, however the boats in the south will be able to heat up more on starboard gybe, which may or may not compensate them for the lower wind speeds that they might be experiencing.’

Photo by Thierry Martinez