Good conditions for transatlantic race, but one crew waits to hear about penalty after lifeboat tows them off Shingles Bank
In the Challenge Transat race from Southampton to Boston, the crew of BP Explorer is busy doing its best to catch up with the front-runners after running aground on the Shingles Bank after the start on Sunday.
The team, skippered by Alex Johnston, lost over 60 valuable miles after failing to kedge in time and falling back on the bank. The team was eventually towed by the Yarmouth Coastguard and will have to await the decision of the International Jury to learn whether or not they will be penalised for seeking outside assistance. No decision will be made until 15 September, after the yacht arrives in Boston.
Vail Williams, skippered by Dave Melville was leader from the start of the race taking the most northerly position, which gave them the early advantage but BG Group, skippered by John Burfitt, later edged ahead of Vail Williams.
The fleet have been experiencing fabulous sailing conditions with average speeds of 9 knots over the past 24 hours. However there is a ridge of high pressure nearby which will reduce the wind to 5-12 knots. The strongest winds are expected in the north and with the fleet so closely bunched there will most probably be a change in leaders over the next few days.