Morten Bogacki, 3rd Proto in Le Marin

16 11

21:15

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German sailor Morten Bogacki, third in the prototype fleet, crossed the finish line of the second leg of the Mini-Transat La Boulangère this Saturday 16 November at 19h 59 min 24 seconds UTC in Le Marin. His race time stands at 14 days, 5 hours, 26 minutes and 24 seconds. He finished 2 days, 2 hours, 59 minutes, 17 seconds astern of first placed François Jambou. His accumulated race time over two legs equates to 23 days, 16 hours, 18 minutes and 52 seconds.

Morten Bogacki: “I’ve yet to realise that I’ve crossed the Atlantic singlehanded!

He’s been the great surprise of this 2nd leg in the prototype category. Despite completing the first leg in 11th place out of 22 in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Morten Bogacki posted an exemplary performance in the second leg, catching everyone unawares by snatching the 3rd step on an incredibly hotly-disputed podium. For his first transatlantic passage, which he had precious little time to prepare for, the 33-year-old German sailor never let up the pace and managed to give his absolute all to rival the very best prototypes. In so doing, he masterfully wraps up his first Atlantic crossing.

“I’m really happy with this 3rd place! Surprised too. Things went well at the start, but I had a few minor breakages aboard and I was unsure of my strategy. However, I ended up picking off the fleet one by one and I’ve discovered that I was third! The past two days have been very difficult with light airs. We didn’t have a lot of information about the weather, aside from the daily report in the morning with the rankings. Up until this afternoon, I believed that my rivals were to the South of me with more breeze and they were still poised to overtake. Until 15 / 16:00 hrs this afternoon, I wasn’t certain about the podium. 

My first leg wasn’t good, particularly as a result of technical problems. I had to pick myself up and forge ahead. I repaired by issues and as a result I felt a bit calmer and more confident with regards to my autopilot problems. However, I did suffer minor damage aboard, mainly due to the strong wind, but maybe also because I pushed the boat a little too hard at times. It was hard to be confident with the autopilot, which I hadn’t tested, but it all worked out well in the end. Changing it was the right decision.

I’m surprised to have finished ahead of Erwan (Le Mene) and Tanguy (Bouroullec). I’d done very little preparation, with practically no sailing this year. The duration of the project was very short so I’m very happy with the result. Despite my podium place, I reckon the pair of them should still be ahead of me in the overall ranking. I do wonder what might have been possible with this boat if I’d had more training.

I’m very pleased with my Mini-Transat! It’s been a fantastic experience. I must remember that I’m happy to have finished and try to forget the past two days in the light airs. The wind didn’t stop turning and it was very hot, which is very tiring, especially mentally. I’ve yet to realise that I’ve crossed the Atlantic singlehanded! When I arrived at the Ilet Cabrit, I looked back and said to myself: "Wow, that was 3,000 miles of open ocean”.