Doldrums life…unpredictable and with company

November 16, 2021


The Doldrums for the OceanFifty Leyton means trying to second guess what the next cloud lines will bring; squally showers and winds jumping about everywhere or – worse still, next to no wind. And Sam Goodchild and Aymeric Chapellier have company as rivals Armel Tripon and Benoit Marie have just appeared. Lying fourth, Goodchild and Chapellier now have 950 miles or so to make to the turn at the Brasilian island of Fernando de Noronha and the good news this morning is they are sailing 10knots faster than their rivals to the west. Goodchild believes they should have escaped the Doldrums by tomorrow, and for all of its reputation for prolonged calms Leyton is still making 22 knots this morning!

Sam Goodchild

“It’s getting a bit busy, we are just coming up to the Doldrums and we are not on our own. We have the P’tits Doudou (Armel Tripon/Benoit Marie), they have just turned up three miles to windward, we saw them on the AIS and can see their lights. Currently I have stars above my head but there is a line of black cloud. We had a one black cloud last night which lost us a few miles. We are just trying to figure our with Aymeric and Marcel what the deal is with the ones up ahead, what they are bringing, what sails we should have up, what we should be ready for. Tomorrow will be light, drifty weather and we will see if we then get a chance to come back at our friends in the west who are still going quick which is not what we wanted, but everything is possible in the Doldrums. Let’s wait and see!

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