Following a tough night with 45-knot winds and 20ft seas, 73-year-old French sailor Jean-Luc Van Den Heede aboard the Rustler 36 Matmut is now within 100 miles of the finish of the Golden Globe Race 2018 off Les Sables d'Olonne, French. He expected to arrive to a huge welcome at 08:00 UTC tomorrow (Tuesday).
Van Den Heede’s rival, Dutchman Mark Slats sailing a second Rustler 36 Ophen Maverick, narrowed the lead by 91 miles over the weekend, but remains 312 miles astern and is now expected to finish no sooner than Thursday, after experiencing another forecast Bay of Biscay gale just before his arrival.
Meanwhile, 3,600 miles astern, Estonian Uku Randmaa sailing a third Rustler 36 One and All is making the most of his last day in the southeast trades, sailing at 6.6 knots today. Fourth-placed American/Hungarian Istvan Kopar sailing his Tradewind 35 Puffin is also still in the trades and working hard to close the distance with Randmaa as they both enter the home stretch of the 30,000-mile round-the-world solo-sailing marathon.
For more on the Golden Globe Race 2018, which began last June and marks the 50th anniversary of Sir Robin Knox Johnston’s win in the original Golden Globe Race, click here.