Twenty knots of wind for the next five days - after a three-day forced break in the Doldrums, Jean Luc Van den Heede is getting closer to his goal of Ushant.
The three-time circumnavigator has left 309 nautical miles in the wake in the past 24 hours. This means that the new best time for a non-stop trip against wind and currents is safe. Philippe Monnet, the previous record holder, was sailing almost 7,000 nautical miles from Ushant off the Cape of Good Hope at the same time. Van den Heede, on the other hand, is only 2,243 miles from the destination after 115 days at sea. If the wind turns east at the end of the week, as hoped, the 59-year-old can arrive in the second week of March. However, some dangers could turn the last few miles into a gauntlet. "I got the message that four containers were floating in the ocean in front of me," reports the Frenchman from aboard his "Adrien". But not only the containers, but also 100 twelve-meter-long plastic sheets are floating on the planned route. While the foils could only cause unnecessary trouble, the containers pose a great danger. Van den Heede trusts the stability of the aluminum hull of the "Adrien": "That gives me a little feeling of security."