Serial world-girdler Jean-Luc Van Den Heede, onboard the 85ft Open class Adrien, has rounded Cape Horn


Serial world-girldler Jean-Luc Van Den Heede, onboard the 85ft aluminium Open class Adrien, has rounded Cape Horn and is progressing well in his attempt to break the solo, non-stop, ‘wrong-way’ (westabout) round the world record, currently held by Philippe Monnet’s Open 60 UUNET.

After 35 days’ racing, VDH, as he is known, is currently 623 miles ahead of the previous record holder’s progress – just a fraction over four days. The following message was received this morning:

“I crossed the Le Maire strait last night. I went in at 0340 GMT and left at 0540. Unfortunately, I had the wind in the nose, but I was helped by a good wind from the northwest. In spite of this delay, I have now four days’ lead over my predecessor.

“I crossed it alone for the sixth time: four the ‘right-way’ and two the ‘wrong-way’. Each time, it brings me a lot of emotion – I am not blasé at all. Besides, I have always thought I would come back on a cruise to visit the innumerable creeks, islands, bays and snowy mountains of the Beagle, Magellan and others straits. When I think about all the discoverers of these grounds, I can only have respect for them.

“Within one hour, I will face the Pacific Ocean and its depression. It is the moment for Adrien and I to get to the heart of the matter. See you tomorrow, JLVDH.”