Team Geronimo are revelling in the lighter breeze away from 95kt winds

Olivier de Kersauson and crew feeling lucky that they are away from the seas they were negotiating a few days ago. According to a news report from the boat this afternoon, the current weather system in that area is generating over 95kts of wind and raising truly horrendous seas.

In their current position – level with Bahia Blanca, a regional urban centre in southern Argentina, where Patagonia meets the Pampas, nearly 2,000 kilometres north of Cape Horn – they are making a steady 16.9kts.

The decision was made to attack this high-pressure region from the west on a fairly direct track, which although costing hours of upwind sailing, was the shortest route. The easterly route would have been more satisfactory in terms of miles per day, but presented two major drawbacks: a 25 per cent longer route and the risk of becoming caught up in the anticyclone if, as all the weather models predict, it decides to visit St Helena.