Foto copyright Velux 5 Oceans
Fuente info Scuttlebutt europe
Gutek Takes Second Place in Velux 5 Oceans First Leg
After exactly one month at sea, Polish ocean racer Zbigniew Gutkowski sailed into Cape Town this evening to claim second place in the first ocean sprint of the Velux 5 Oceans. The 36-year-old, known as Gutek, crossed the finish line off the South African coast at 10.03pm local time, 31 days, six hours and three minutes after leaving La Rochelle in France.
After a frustrating few days of light winds on the approach to Cape Town, Gutek completed the leg in fresh conditions, a south easterly breeze of between 20 and 25 knots powering him across the finish with the lights of Cape Town illuminated in the background.
Gutek, a former national champion dinghy racer, impressed right from the start of the solo round the world race, leading the VELUX 5 OCEANS fleet across the start line of this first stage and out into the Bay of Biscay. Despite problems with his Eco 60 yacht Operon Racing early on, Gutek kept pace with American rival Brad Van Liew, constantly challenging for first place right until the end of the 7,400-mile leg.
Gutek's finish comes just three days behind Brad, who won the ocean sprint on Sunday evening. The feat is all the more impressive considering Gutek is a newcomer to solo sailing and, at 19 years old, Operon Racing is the oldest boat in the VELUX 5 OCEANS fleet and seven years older than Brad's Le Pingouin. But she is by no means a slow boat - she was built by French sailing legend Alain Gautier who sailed her to victory in the 1992/3 Vendée Globe.
In the tradition of the VELUX 5 OCEANS, the 42-year-old American was on the dock to welcome in his rival and friend. Gutek was also reunited with his wife Eliza and his shore crew.
Canadian skipper Derek Hatfield and British ocean racer Chris Stanmore-Major are due to arrive in Cape Town over the weekend.
Statistics from 12pm UTC position report:
Skipper; distance to finish (nm); distance covered in last 24 hours (nm); average speed in last 24 hours (kts)
Brad Van Liew: finished Nov 14, 28 days, 1 hour, 51 mins
Gutek: finished Nov 17, 31 days, 6 hours, 3 mins
Derek Hatfield: 693; 176; 6.3
Chris Stanmore-Major: 943.9; 118.6; 4.9
Christophe Bullens: 3,578.2; 124.2; 5.2
Etiquetas: Regatas internacionales