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11/05 - 12h23

Francis Joyon, some things are not ideal

Computers are down on Francis Joyon's IDEC which is now up to third place overall in the Ultime class, 160 miles behind race leader Loick Peyron. But the innovative and vastly experienced, super self reliant Joyon is scarcely perturbed

Francis is having to do without his computer. He joked (he's the only one who would find it funny): “So, looking at the computer situation,
the small laptop is dead, while the main computer only stays on for a minute, while the third one just won't boot up. It's not great, but occasionally I get my hands on a wind chart or an e-mail from my router, Jean-Yves Bernot. I have to make do with that.”
Having to make do means being “obliged to note down by hand the positions of all the others, which isn't that easy. So I don't really
know where I am in comparison to them. I haven't seen anyone since leaving the English Channel.”
Another little bit of damage has just been solved in the Joyon way with a few bits of sticky back plastic but with a lot of intelligence.
Francis explains, “I was finding the boat hard to steer, so it was a bit dangerous… and then I noticed that a small block of wood holding a
lashing on the rudder had broken. So the result was that the rudder was slightly raised up at the back making it harder to control the
boat. At thirty knots, it wasn't great… but I sorted it out doing some DIY with a few bits of rope. I don't know how to put it, but let's
just say it's a bit of a lash-up as a repair, but it seems to be holding.”
For the moment, the race goes on in conditions that are finally not as extreme. “The start of the race was really too violent, but since
Madeira (now behind him) it's been a lot quieter. We've got a fifteen knot northerly and calm weather is forecast later today. That makes a
change at least, as yesterday I saw the wind go from ten to 43 knots in less than one minute… which is a bit complicated when you are on a
multihull.” When you are doing this type of sailing, you need to keep your wits about you at all times and any rest is extremely welcome. “I
grabbed a few short naps just lasting seconds this morning. It's just enough for me to recuperate and I'm feeling fine. On the other hand, I
haven't managed to get any hot meals since the start and have just eaten a few cereal bars. It's not ideal as a diet.”

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