Swiss Bernard Stamm sailing his Open 60 'Bobst Group-Armor Lux' crossed the Cape Town finishing line at 1000 GMT on 13 November to complete the leg in under 30 days
Swiss skipper Bernard Stamm brought his Open 60 ‘Bobst Group-Armor Lux’ over the finish line in Table Bay, Cape Town South Africa at 11:59:45hrs local time (GMT 2) this morning, Wednesday 13 November under a misty drizzle and in a dying inshore breeze to win Leg 2 of Around Alone 2002-03.
Stamm completed the 6,880nm leg from Torbay, England to Cape Town just under the 30 day barrier – a total of 29 days, 21 hours, 59 minutes and 45 seconds. Yet again the Swiss skipper has recorded a remarkable time and added another win to the scoreboard after his record-breaking transatlantic crossing and victory in Leg 1 from New York to Torbay
In a short press conference Stamm said : “It was a pretty windy start to the leg with that big low pressure, but I managed to put some distance between myself and Thierry & Emma then. It is tricky to get to Cape Town with the high pressure blocking the way, but now I have arrived I am so happy to be here!” When asked about what it was like to climb his mast just two days before his arrival, he replied: “You look up and you say to yourself ‘I can’t do it!’ but then you tell yourself the only way to win the leg is to go up the mast, so you climb. But when you are up there at the top, you look down and say ‘I can’t get down!'”
Stamm’s closest rival, Thierry Dubois on Solidaires was, at 0600hrs this morning, 118nm behind Stamm steaming in to Cape Town at an average speed of 16 knots for the last 8 hours. Dubois is controlling his lead over third placed British skipper, Emma Richards on Pindar and lies 91 miles ahead of her.
Pindar is reaching at 10 knots in awkward seas, and Emma is “hanging in there!” as she put it this morning: “Saw the first signs of the coast last night, a huge container ship, passed within a couple of miles. Lucky I had taped on my emergency nav lights to the bow in the evening. My masthead ones and strobe light were blown off in the big storm the first week, I could only see they were gone when I went up the mast last week, and the bow ones finally gave up during the night before last! I have just got the position reports in which is very disappointing, but I believe in miracles so I’m off to help make them happen!”
This morning at 0600hrs GMT Graham Dalton’s Hexagon lay 178 miles back from Pindar. However it may be all too late for the New Zealander to gain a podium place as the wind remains stable from the south and he falls into line behind the other two yachts on the same track towards the finish.
The latest ETAs (local time = GMT 2hrs) for the next 3 boats are: Solidaires – 2100hrs local time Wednesday 13th November Pindar – 0900hrs local time Thursday 14th November Hexagon – 2300hrs local time Thursday 14th November