Mini Transat 2015 · Dominik Lenk

The Last Week

The start of the Mini Transat Iles de Guadeloupe is less than 6 days away. I have been in Douarnenez for the last three weeks and am spending my time with short training trips and generally ticking off items from my todo list. Except for a couple of small things, the boat is almost ready and I can spend the last few days keeping an eye on navigation and weather.

Things looked slightly different a few weeks ago: My electronics had taken quite a beating during my 1000 mile qualifier and were still not working properly. I decided to run new cables through the mast. My wind instruments were given to the manufacturer for servicing, who swapped out the microchip inside. Apparently they got hit by lighting, which I don’t entirely believe as I still have a mast.

Next stop: The rudders. The starboard mounting bracket had broken during the Mini Fastnet. I discovered that the port one wasn’t looking much better. So I unpacked the carbon and started laminating on the marina parking lot.

All skippers of this year's Mini Transat

All 72 boats have been locked into Port Rhu in Douarnenez since Wednesday. You are only allowed to leave if you sign up for it with race management. Before the start on Saturday I might take advantage of this one last time to test everything. After that all that is left to do is measuring in the new sails and learning about all the different pills in my first aid kit.

The start is on Saturday at 15:30. Until then we will see plenty of visitors—two years ago it was about 25,000. On Monday I will get a visit from a French school class—each skipper has one assigned to them. But mostly, the last days are just a waiting game …

Race village in Douarnenez