The Vendee Globe fleet has been at sea for 37 days and is fast approaching the halfway point. Dominique, who is currently lying south west of Australia at 42 degrees, has raced 10,000nm since the start in the Sables d’Olonne, France, on the 10 November and he currently has 14,000nm to go. These impressive numbers give some idea of the magnitude of the task that these sailors have undertaken.
The Vendee Globe is an endurance race and both the skipper and boat need to make it round – sleep is a major factor. “Right now I feel quite well rested,” said Dominique, “although in these shifty conditions, there is a lot of boat handling, which is quite tiring.”
Dominique’s rest consists of a series of 30-minute siestas. “I set my alarm and every 30 minutes, I check my position, heading and the wind direction and speed. I go up on deck once every 90 minutes to check my trim. Sometimes it is obvious what needs doing, but other times it is more subtle, I tend to operate a little bit on instinct.”