Lighter winds caused by a high-pressure weather system on the northern side of the “rhumb line” (the shortest direct route between Los Angeles and Hawaii) have slowed the progress of MaseratiMulti70 and the two American trimarans – Mighty Merloe and Phaedo3 – as the multihull trio scrap it out for the Transpac Race line honours lead.
Giovanni Soldini’s crew on second placed MaseratiMulti70 were the first to gybe earlier today to avoid the effects of the high pressure – a common feature of this classic 2,225-mile open ocean yacht race. The two others later followed suit but the foiling Italian boat has stayed furthest south, away from the lightest winds.
“We have been gybing to keep ourselves in breeze,” Soldini reported from the boat today. “We are in half and half foiling mode because we want to sail deep away from the high pressure. All is good on board and we are enjoying this exciting race.”
The three-way tussle for the overall lead in the 55-boat fleet looks likely to continue all the way to the finish at Diamond Head on Monday. Soldini is believes the wind will increase further along the course but expects to have to stay well south of the rhumb line for the best speed.
At 18.00 Italian time tonight (06.00 in Hawaii) MaseratiMulti70 was in second place on the water, sailing south west (241 degrees) at 17.1 knots with 1268.7 miles to go. Further north, leader Mighty Merloe was on a parallel course and speed, 1248.9 miles from the finish. Third
Follow the boat’s progress here: http://maserati.soldini.