2nd of July, 2013

Light weather for Day 1

A light start to the Royal Cup is expected today for the eight boat 52 SUPER SERIES fleet as they race on Ibiza waters for the first time. Race officer Maria Torrijo is hoping to run three races but the forecasts are predicting winds less than nine knots with a variation in strength and direction. Wednesday looks to be lighter.

Over the course of the week the target is to run ten races including Thursday’s coastal race. Conditions, then, are set to be very different to Barcelona where the Conde de Godo Trophy was raced in cooler air temperatures and relatively strong winds.

Jules Salter, the Volvo Ocean Race winning navigator from Rán Racing, explains the Ibiza race area and why the sea breeze generation is not so reliable:

The weather set up here is very typical of the summer in the Mediterranean so there is not much gradient breeze. The gradient dominates and so there is some thermal effect, but it is not really a true sea breeze. A sea breeze is created by the land heating up a lot of air, the hot air rises and draws in the cooler air from the sea, normally. So if you have a lot of hot air rising then that can generate a good sea breezein a real warm place. Ibiza is quite small and a complicated shape. Formentera is almost attached and so that makes it harder for the air to rise in one place and so the air flows in different directions. Palma, for example, it heats up quite quickly. And even then we are in a lee of Palma which is only 70 or 80 miles away. We follow our forecasts, and our forecasters are the experts and have a good handle on what’s going to happen. Then it is down to the subtle differences in the forecast in what will make a difference. So we try and sail on the race track with what we see and hopefully that fits to an overall pattern and you get a bit of a theory as to what is happening and to be expected.
Jules Salter, navigator, Rán Racing

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