Hitting the Doldrums

May 28, 2018

Question: Looking at the online tracking App it appeared that First Light and Power of One were heading for an area of very low opposing current, whilst having similar wind conditions (12-16 knots from the SW) to most of the others. Am I reading the charts wrongly because their speeds have dropped to just over 1 knot and many of the others are also less than 4 knots?

Answer: From the information we have it looks as though the area First Light and Power of One are in is very light current of mixed directions, but they entered into the windless zone first, which is why their speeds dropped so much. The axis of the gulf stream does head off away from the rhumb line so there is potential for the rest of the teams to get into some strange, weird, sideways currents as they make their way towards the coastline where the currents are more favorable. However, all of the teams are entering into a convergence of systems, which will have light winds that over the next 24-hours will be generally from the south of less than 5 knots. The conditions on board will take a lot of concentration and work to eek out every knot of boat speed possible. 


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