How to follow Uroš on MAP regatta
Here is all you need to know about how to follow the Trophée Marie-Agnès Péron 2023 race, the first in the season for Uroš. We will update this post live, so make sure you keep this tab open and refresh it now and then.
I talked to Uroš directly after the race and again today when he was well-rested. Hi is in high spirits and sums up the trophée Marie-Agnès Péron 2023 in one sentence: “From all the things I was doing, I was sailing the least”.
The whole ordeal at the beginning of the race was caused by a broken thimble (alloy ring that guides ropes) that, if I understood correctly, made him broach (turn into the wind uncontrollably). His flapping masthead-gennaker then caught a solar panel on the back of another board, tearing itself apart and taking the panel with it. He got a one-hour penalty for this.
Throughout the race, he experienced all kinds of electrical problems and suspects water must have come where it shouldn’t and caused short circuits. The worst consequence was that his autopilot didn’t work correctly, and sometimes locked up the rudder without any inputs. The worst was during the night when he was racing along with 14 knots. Imagine how you would feel if your steering wheel would lock up on the highway.
One of the old fractional halyards broke the second day, and the smaller gennaker fell in the water, wrapping itself around the daggerboards. He got it out in one piece. And the list goes on and on. I am sure he will describe it in detail in his written report.
He ended up sailing on jib and mainsail alone, and pretty much all the broken equipment was what he decided not to change this winter. So now he has to, and the silver lining at the end of all this is that it all happened at the beginning of the season, and we have time to get everything sorted out for the main event – the MiniTransat 2023 in September.
We were on thin ice financially with the Ashika Sailing project even before this demolition derby, so now we are in grave peril. Please consider donating if you would like to support us and help Uroš prepare for the Atlantic crossing properly.
Directly from Duarnenez:
“Just left Uros. We had a great time talking together and with other skippers. Uros has a really hard time and lots of broken equipments. Hard time for him.”
In the safe harbour!
He is done! Battered and bruised, he has finished the season’s first regatta. But we have plenty of cards still to play in the next ones, so keep following Ashika Sailing!
15th/25 in his proto division
45th/84 in general
Is this the rabbit? Uroš, with nothing to lose, decided to extend his first upwind tack further than anyone else. If the wind direction shifts to the north, even by a few degrees, it might mean significant gains for him compared to the rest of the fleet. Of course, it is a gamble, but this is the time for gambling.
After some fast sailing in the night and then the whole morning, Uroš is still somewhere between a rock and a hard place without many opportunities to outsail the others. The constant beam wind means this is a horse/cow race [not sure if this translates well to English from Slovene] sailing in a straight line from waypoint to waypoint without tactical decision points, heavy manoeuvres or high physical loads in which Uroš excels. It all comes down to the boat’s speed, and it is evident that Ashika II, as a 14-year-old, is lacking in that department, especially if she is missing the largest sail.
But the last 40 miles of the race are mostly upwind, and there the playing field levels for Uroš, and he might pull a rabbit out of a hat to propel him up the rankings.
It’s not over until it’s over!!!
Uroš onboard Ashika II #759 is sailing into the night in the second half of the peloton, with leaders again making a run for it. However, he is staying further out towards the open ocean than anyone else, probably taking the meto guru Jure’s advice that there will be more wind at night.
Meanwhile, the leading pack, with an impressive number of women sailors in it, show that the speed of their newer sailboats is unmatched once the wind fills in. It will be hard to catch them in these conditions that do not require a lot of tactical decisions.
View from the Pointe du Raz webcam.
Two photos from the start.
First parking zone. All the lead that the fastest boats gained in the initial 40 miles of the race quickly evaporated at the first windless transition zone, or parking lot, as sailors call it. Some crazy overtaking on the left happened as several Series boats took the lead. Unfortunately, Uroš is in the wrong position to escape this area fast.
BREAKING NEWS, literally. After reviewing the live footage from the start, it is clear that Uroš lost his big kite/masthead gennaker. That explains his lower speeds and higher angle to the wind compared to the others.
He is sailing with the old set of sails since the new ones have yet to be measured and certified, and it looks like this one has had enough and exploded.
Luckily he will most likely not need it for the rest of the race since there will be no true downwind legs. He is currently in 13th place among protos.
I am guessing Uroš had trouble hoisting his masthead gennaker (the largest sail he has) since he lost a lot of places right after the first mark. In the phone call yesterday, he warned us not to expect too much of him since what he saw, the level of competition is significantly higher this year. It is expected that in the year of MiniTransat, which happens every two years, the number and level of sailors competing will rise. So we need to cheer him on so much more. These are marathon races; the first few miles don’t decide anything.
Uroš is 10th out of 84 boats in general at the first mark. And 4th out of 25 boats in his proto division. Flying sails going up!
Great start for Uroš! Right on time across the starting line and with undisturbed air in his sails!
Tracker has plenty of delay. 15 min to be exact.
Live video reporting is running:
START IS POSTPONED TO 13:00!
Uroš left the port. His mainsail is up, and now he has a couple of hours to get the boat cleaned and all the systems ready for action.
You can find him on the tracker under the yellow boat with the number 759.
Yellow boats are prototypes:
- Unlimited use of material for the hull and deck (except for materials with a density higher than that of lead and titanium)
that means a full carbon hull, mast, boom and bowsprit
- canting keel + daggerboards allowed
- hydrofoils allowed
- outriggers allowed
- water ballast up to 400l
- lifting rudders allowed
Red boats are series:
- made according to strict class rules en masse,
- Fiberglass/ epoxy/polyester resins hull,
- fixed keel, no daggerboards
- no hydrofoils
- alu mast, boom and bowsprit
- water ballasts prohibited
- lifting rudders prohibited
- outriggers allowed
Boats are departing from the port and you can see them on the webcam from the nearby beach.
In about an hour, at 09:00, Uroš will have to hand over his phone to the race organisers. Any communication with the outside world is forbidden from then until the finish. He is also prohibited from bringing on or taking off anything from the boat. The entire fleet of 84 sailboats will slowly leave the dock and proceed to the starting area.
Jure Jerman, our meteo expert, predicts stable conditions. Clear skies, northeast, east winds around 15 knots, more wind closer to the shore during the day and the opposite at night. 36-40 hours of sailing time.
It doesn’t get better than this.