On Monday 21 January at 07h45 UTC, Spindrift 2 broke her own record by just over an hour, by crossing the Equator in 4 days 19 hours 57 minutes. This also gave the black and gold team an advantage of more than 23 hours (180 miles) over the current holders of the Trophy Jules Verne, IDEC Sport.
This is the first challenge in the team’s quest to beat the round the world record. The time for the passage from Ushant to the Equator still has to be officially ratified by the WSSRC (the international organization that oversees records), but Yann Guichard and his crew can be pleased with this first section of the course, and bettering their own record time, set in 2015 (4d 21h 45′), by 1 hour and 48 minutes.
Spindrift 2 crossed the line in front of the Créac’h lighthouse on Wednesday 16 January at 11h 47 ’27’ UTC and quickly took advantage of the
“We entered the Doldrums at 2° North: they were not very active, so we had to get through in relatively little breeze, but it was especially nice to have the full moon when we crossed the equator: we even saw the eclipse! It was beautiful for a good hour … Everyone has really been on the pace and the modifications that we made to the coach roof have been a real bonus – we are definitely less exposed. The route to the equator was not easy: we had quite lumpy seas in the lead up to the islands, then we had to gybe a lot and pass right through the Canaries and Cape Verde archipelagos.” Commented Yann Guichard, a few moments after crossing the equator, the ‘line’ separating the north and south hemispheres.