Delayed Mini Transat will start today in La Rochelle 18/9/09

The 16th Transat 6.50 Charente-Maritime/Bahia (Mini Transat) that was postponed on Sunday will start today at 1238.

A forecast cold front that caused concern for the race committee at the weekend has now stabilised and a decision was announced at a skippers’ briefing last night to start the race today.

The latest weather forecast shows a 20kt northerly wind, which will go round to the east by Wednesday. Approaching Finisterre it will be about 15 knots. The leading boats should pass Finisterre by Thursday night. The second part of leg one will be mostly downwind sailing which means the leaders should be in Maderia in six days.

Interestingly, the race prologue which took place on Sunday was cancelled half way through the race due to lack of wind.

According to British sailor Andrew Wood the fleet will cross the startline off Maison de la Charente-Maritime in La Rochelle at 1238 today on their first leg sprint to Maderia. They have a short, inshore course set before they head off down the coast. Wood commenting just before he set off, said: “It’s been a really busy 10 days here and I’m pleased to say the boat is looking as good and I’m feeling happy with her.

“It’s been a long time getting here and I’m really looking forward to setting off this the morning. The weather is looking like we should have some fast reaching across Biscay and if were not too slow over Biscay, some heavy surfing down the coast of Spain.”