Geronimo, Olivier de Kersauson's 110ft super-tri has shattered the outright Equator record
Geronimo, Olivier de Kersauson’s 110ft super-tri has shattered the outright Equator record set by the late Sir Peter Blake on Enza in 1994. Having clocked up an average of 500 miles every 24 hours on the southward leg, she crossed the Equator yesterday afternoon after 6 days, 11 hours, 26 minutes and 21 seconds at sea doing average speed of 21 knots.
“We are delighted to have had such a wonderful run up to now. This is a complex part of the course and one where it is possible to lose a lot of time. From the sailing point of view, it hasn’t been too tiring, but defining our strategy and analysing the weather involve a great deal of work. I haven’t had a lot of rest in the past few days?”, says the captain of the Cap Gemini Ernst & Young and Schneider Electric crew. “This is a symbolic moment for us as we cross the line from North to South and it’s the result of a joint effort in which the commitment and application shown by everyone has been totally rewarded; it vindicates all the trust placed in Geronimo and her crew.”
However, despite their success having broken the most current record held by Orange, and Blake’s outright record, Olivier de Kersauson still remains prudent in his assessment of what lies ahead, commenting: “There is an enormous anticyclone right across the South Atlantic and we’re not sure about what kind of weather systems may lie ahead. There is a way through, but it’s narrow. It’s not a motorway and the road to the Cape of Good Hope will not be a straight one. We will probably have to cover an extra 1,000 – or even 1,200 miles to avoid the calms. There’s a lot that can go wrong with the weather in the Atlantic.”
The most immediate concern for the crew however, is the feeling of guilt they have over what they call a massacre of flying fish. Apparently Geronimo’s main hull is sparkling from the scales of the fish!
Position at 03:00 GMT
Latitude, Longitude, Distance in 24hr, Average speed, Distance to the Equator
Geronimo – 04°18N, 31°41W, 527 nautical miles, 21.94, 258 nautical miles
Orange – 08°08N, 26°29W, 373 nautical miles, 15.54, 488 nautical miles