olympic race - which route to choose?
Post by iconPost by freudenoli | 2021-05-19 | 12:21:06

hi everybody...I am a bit lost as to which route to choose...does anybody want to share their secrets with the competition? :-)
any advice whatsoever would be highly welcomed!

commenticon 51 Comments
Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-05-19 | 16:36:50
I haven't accessed the race yet and have been wondering... What's the course? Is it just... Sail from Rio to Tokyo via whatever rout you want? No gates or buoys aside from the start and the finish? If so, I like the concept... I've always wanted to do a race like that.

I'd tend to guess that sailing East past the Cape of Good Hope would be best, if the boats being sailed are fast boats downwind. (What boat is it?). In boats that are fast downwind, we ought to be able to go East from Rio very fast... And then it's just a matter of finding a fast route through the China Sea, most likely. But I'd love to see evidence of being wrong about that. If the northern options have any realistic chance, this race could be very interesting. My only hesitation from being excited about this race is that if it turns out that one route is obviously the only good route, the concept is flawed. (I'd like to see a similar concept but from Finland to Tasmania, or something like that, where all of the options seem really possible).

I was planning to wait for Cvetan to post it in Zezo, to play with some routings, before deciding whether or not to enter.
Post by iconPost by freudenoli | 2021-05-20 | 13:19:03
thanks YM!
boat is a trimaran, looks like an ultim to me, but VR haven't put a name to it anywhere as far as I can see...
VR is saying that we have the choice of 4 routes...no marks or gates on the map (yet)...but I can't see how VR can keep people on 4 routes, so I guess its free choice for everybody how they get to Tokyo...the famous white line indicates the classic approach east to Australia and then up north...
any ideas on how to estimate time needed for the north routes?
I get that weather forecasts are only available 16 days out max, which is way too short to cover the whole routes, but is there a possibility to use historic wind data to get a rough idea on the time needed for each route? do they differ in days or weeks?

Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-05-20 | 16:31:45
If I do the race, I'll probably just experiment with leapfrogging routings in Zezo. So... route 16 days along the Northwest Passage route, and then pick a spot at the end of that routing, and try to route to Tokyo from there. Then try it with the NE passage and so on. It will not be very accurate, but nothing else would be either because the forecast for 20 days into the future is too unpredictable. This method should at least provide an idea of which routes make sense to consider. After that, it becomes a matter of deciding which looks like the most fun to you, and hoping it turns out to be the right route.

I'll probably do it on credits. I doubt I'll pay for the full pack. I just hope there's more than one option with a realistic chance to win. I love the concept, but it's silly if one route is obviously correct.
Post by iconPost by BRISE06 | 2021-05-24 | 08:00:55
Fortunatly it does not seam that there is an obvious route yet. As you say, cape of good hope route seams to be the best with the type of boat we ll have but it's also the longest, North Canada route is approx 12% shorter while north siberia is 8% and cape Horn is 4% shorter. (Very approximative routes traced on google earth)
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2021-05-25 | 10:37:28
Race chart is available now.

I'd go with the classic Clipper route myself. Good Hope - Java -> Japan. About three weeks.
Post by iconPost by montecristo11 | 2021-05-25 | 10:52:15
sorry Cvetan... but it seems that the Chart is not visible...
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2021-05-25 | 14:08:08
Force reload the home page. Or reload the extension. Or go to http://zezo.org/olympic/chart.pl until the cached versions expire.
Post by iconPost by BRISE06 | 2021-05-25 | 11:39:33
thank you Svetan, I ll likely take the clipper route, However your routing shows the siberian route. Thank you for all the fantastic work that you re doing for the players. Awsome
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2021-05-25 | 14:15:43
The router won't go the Clipper route by itself. As you can see the GC direction from Rio to Tokio is North. You have to help it by placing a destination point somewhere in the Indian ocean.

Siberian route looks too long. Sailing around N. America looks a bit more promising right now - 2 weeks get you to Alaska.
Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-05-25 | 15:26:03
A suggestion... Could you create intermediate destinations in the "Go To" list for each of the routes? For example...

Goto East Route (waypoint in the Eastern Indian Ocean).
Goto West Route (waypoint in the South Pacific, not far enough North to have problems routing form Rio).
Goto Northwest Route (waypoint in Baffin Bay?)
Goto Northeast Route (waypoing in Northern Sea?)

And then maybe default it to East Route so that users who follow Zezo blindly will be given the most conventional route. Or a different default, if you prefer, rather than Tokyo. West Route could actually be a good default.

I really want to do one of the Northern routes, just because races so rarely go up there, but I'm doubtful about it working. The winds surprisingly get quite light up there a lot.
Post by iconPost by BooBill | 2021-05-26 | 01:02:44
The Northwest Passage lies north of the westerlies and below the polar vortex in summer. It's folly. - Captain Sir John Franklin
Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-05-26 | 03:52:53
The man who ate his boots.
Post by iconPost by Inicio | 2021-05-26 | 08:52:04
The time difference between the route without any options and the FP route is so small that it leaves me puzzled.
It even seems that the most profitable combination of options would be winches and hull.
That's what the numbers now say in Zezo ...
Makes sense?
Post by iconPost by lorenzo | 2021-05-26 | 18:40:51
Anyone knows if there will be ice limits?
And how will the game act at high latitudes- For instance looking at image below if I place a route north where is the up arrow will I magically appear at the down arrow? Will I get stuck? Game crash? Bears attack?

Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-05-26 | 18:56:40
I doubt it will have ice limits, but I could be wrong. They've never done a northern ice limit.

The visible open water ends at about 85N. I have explored up there in the past (I think after a Spindrift run, waiting for the event to close). It was a couple years ago, so I may be remembering incorrectly, but I believe if you point 000, you can keep going to something like 89 59 30 N. Somewhere around there, it behaved oddly when I tried it. It continued to say I had boatspeed, but my position never advanced (and it didn't say I was aground either). I also tried sailing angles like 085 and 275, and couldn't go further north. So I think it just mysteriously stops you there. It's hard to be sure because you can't see yourself up there. You also can't see the wind angles, and I believe the winds are probably very screwy up there because the GFS data is in rectangular grids that turn pretty much into triangles up there. Best move is probably to set a waypoint on the other side, turn autosails on, and hope you get through? I'm not sure.

I want to do exactly that... Sail over the pole, or close to it. But I'm not sure if I'll do that or just sail the more traditional route.
Post by iconPost by lorenzo | 2021-05-26 | 19:10:57
-Sail over the pole- exactly what I want to do as well

this is going to be fun, the ultimate challenge for Jessica

if we got stuck there, we have enough ice for the Gin Tonic
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2021-05-27 | 08:47:57
Mercator projection becomes infinite at the poles (there's 1/cos(phi) in the formula), so it's usually limited to latitudes about 85.
Post by iconPost by goyann | 2021-06-01 | 15:52:24
Does it imply in the VR game to follow the 85° latitude or can we follow 89°? I assume there is a quite difference between both.

Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-06-01 | 16:07:52
I'm certain you can sail as high as 89. I think you can get to 89.5. I'm not sure how much higher you can get than that. I know that at some point above 89, your boat stops going further North. You will be offscreen, and your boat will still show boatspeed and direction, but your position will stop advancing. I don't know exactly where, but I'm pretty sure you're safe up to at least 89.0. The bigger challenge at that point is that you can't see your boat or the wind, and the wind can be quite variable because the shape of the planet doesn't fit the wind data model very well up there.

When I was thinking I wanted to try that route, but I was unable to believe it had enough of a chance to win to actually do it... My plan was... Sail north to a position I liked near the upper limit of VR's screen... Then set a waypoint to a destination I was happy with on the other side, near the Bering Strait or maybe at a point above the strait that I thought would give me a nice angle to the strait. Then turn on autosails and let VR sail the shortest distance through the part you can't see. If you aren't going through a full 180 degrees of longitude in the process, you won't go straight over the top, and hopefully will stay below 89 while also sailing the shortest possible distance. But... you'd still have to actively monitor it in case it hits a stopping point or headwinds. Trying to sleep while offscreen could result in hours of being head-to-wind.

Anyway... That was my plan. Then I saw that we could do 40+ kts for a few days, in the right direction, by going around the Cape of Good Hope, so I decided to not go with a bold northern strategy this time. Good luck to those who are trying. It should be a fun adventure even if it doesn't win. Many different possible routes up there, all of which will be interesting and fun.

Cvetan, how far North will Zezo consider?
Post by iconPost by ogin8 | 2021-06-02 | 17:35:34
Hi all,

Simply you are not able even apprai=och north/South Pole using Mercator projestion. It is like "black hole". The area of incosistency for matemathical calculations. At the North Pole therea are no East Or West directions. It is only South and all the winds are also south winds. So all the winds are head winds.
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2021-05-27 | 08:59:35
@Inicio The small difference with and without options in the Southern Ocean is not unexpected. You can't overtake the weather, so if a SO boat is fast enough to keep up with the systems it will be very close to a full option boat.

Edit: with the current forecast a SO boat can't keep up, so there is almost 20 hour difference to Australia.

Post by iconPost by Inicio | 2021-05-28 | 18:04:55

Post by iconPost by f0eeb | 2021-05-28 | 05:26:02
Be careful, the timeshift for departure is wrong.
The departure time is 19:00UTC, and not 20:00UTC
Post by iconPost by f0eeb | 2021-05-28 | 05:26:02
Be careful, the timeshift for departure is wrong.
The departure time is 19:00UTC, and not 20:00UTC
Post by iconPost by CRISTAU | 2021-05-28 | 07:29:09
Yes it's a pity but Good Hope is the only realistic way to go, at least 2 days better that through Horn and 4 days better than North, even if we could go through North Pole. Same as YourMom and probably at the same time, I tried to reach North Pole at the end of a Record and could not get to it, I do not remember precisely but probably the best I could do was 89°N.
I also calculated on other positions of the map, usually need 67h for 20° vertical distance in normal weather (32h at best in high winds) so that's what we need at least from 80° on one side to 80° on the other side of the globe, and I see 480h total through Good Hope but 340h from Rio to 80°N and 238h at best from 80°N to Tokyo.
Regarding the sails, routing from Rio to Malaysia, I see 27h difference between FP and no option. 3h more with Foils+C0+HG.
@Cvetan, could you make a view with North Pole in the center for people willing to try North? Excluding a circle of 1° full North?
Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-05-28 | 18:19:22
In an event this long, a change for the forecast of what will happen in the Arctic in 2 weeks or in the Bering Sea or South China Sea or South Pacific beyond the end of the available forecast could easily change things by more than 4 days. The winning route definitely isn't certain. But... Cape of Good Hope certainly appears to be favored.
Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-05-28 | 21:29:48
Does anyone know of any fully equipped boats trying northerly routes? It would be nice to have a few boats to track along those routes.

I'm guessing the Cape Horn route will probably be at the top of the leaderboard for at least a week. If I'm right, then it won't be difficult to find boats on that route to track. It'll be interesting to see if the Straits of Magellan can get into good Pacific winds faster than Cape Horn.
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2021-05-28 | 21:50:37
I see LapseofReason and shockwave11 going north with full packs.

Post by iconPost by shockwave11 | 2021-05-30 | 05:22:17
Yep im heading to Russia with love.
Post by iconPost by CRISTAU | 2021-05-29 | 07:41:19
I see Escampo and Faye_Kinnet-PYR. I routed the straight of Magellan, presently no hope there.
Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-06-01 | 16:15:02
The best-placed boat I know of heading toward Cape Horn is Tarahumara_POR.
Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-06-01 | 16:39:56
For those going North, I found the notes from the old polar exploration referenced above. It was at the end of a Jules Verne cycle in 2018. A few boats were involved, and everyone's comments are in an old Zezo thread entitled "Going aground at the North Pole":


Here are the conclusions I published:

"- Based on the below, the real world doesn't have any land north of 84N. Plenty of sea ice, but sea ice is open water in the game. I think it's probably safe to assume everything in the game above 84N is open water.


- The furthest North you can actually see in the game is 85N, and that's at the top of your screen in full zoom. If you zoom out, you can't see as far North.

- The furthest North you can set a waypoint is approximately 87N20'. That's by zooming all the way out and dragging the bottom of the waypoint's stem up to the top of your range of cursor motion.

- The furthest North you can actually sail is 89N30'00". It will sail slightly past that, but then resets your latitude back. Your E-W progress still occurs, but every N movement is immediately reversed.

- With some rough math, I approximated the distance around the world E-W at 89.5N to be 188 nm. I'm not sure if that's right or wrong. When sailing W at 18-20 kts, I was covering approximately 30 degrees of longitude per hour. That would suggest 6-7 nm per 10 degrees at that latitude, which would suggest something like 220-240 nm around. So... it's something in the 180-250 nm range around. I did it in 17.5 hours, but I slept through half of that and I think I may have been going upwind quite slowly some of the night. You can't see the wind forecast up there, so all you can do is set it to W or E, turn on the autosails, and hope for the best. I think if someone just went up there, set it to W, and kept a running "best circumnavigation" time checking once per waking hour, within a few days they'd be able to establish a time around 12 hours. To do it much faster than 10 hours, you'd need a pretty lucky wind pattern. Roughly 6 hours should be technically possible... but I doubt the winds would ever align well enough for a time better than maybe 8.

- Once you're way up there, you can't use a waypoint to get out. When you attempt to set a waypoint, it stops the entire waypoint graphic too far North to see or move. You need to set a course on a southerly angle and achieve enough southbound progress to get below about 88N before waypoints can be used again."

N'Lasse reported sailing around the world at 89.5N in 14 hours 50 minutes.
Post by iconPost by tabasco2 | 2021-06-02 | 17:54:36
WOW!!! thank you YourMomSA, great job!!!

Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-06-08 | 20:39:07
Interesting splits developing now...

-The thickest fleet appears to be the one I'm in, heading for the Sunda Strait. Boats near me include BooBill, Marcusbelgicus, machaon, Arylla, and Toppen.
-The Cape of Good Hope fleet seems to also have a group following the white line. That group will probably split further upon reaching Indonesia. These boats are currently at the top of the leaderboard, so it includes Pinouche, Toothfairy, Talou29, and others.
-A third Cape of Good Hope fleet is heading for Northwest Australia. This group includes kallemans, MattJohnson, and gameuro. Like the second group, they'll probably fracture more upon reaching Indonesia.
-There's actually also a fourth Cape of Good Hope option... Which is to go South of Australia before turning North. The only boat I've noticed doing this is Petitbils, but I would guess there are probably more.

-Then there's the Cape Horn strategy. Tarahumara is halfway to New Zealand now, and sailing fast toward Tokyo. I haven't run a routing, but it will be interesting to see where that boat comes out against the groups that went furthest East from the Cape of Good Hope. I don't know if anyone is ahead of Tarahumara on that route.

-Going North, I see shockwave11 gave up on the Russia plan and is heading for Hudson Bay. HELA and twitch.tv/Rastats are going North near Greenland. They're all in headwinds at the moment. It will be hard to judge whether or not they have a chance until they get to the Bering Sea. I'm not aware of anyone doing the Northwest route faster than those three.
-Finally... Northeast. Conditions look pretty good near Iceland for sailing in that direction at the moment, but I don't know of anyone going that way. Anyone have any idea who the leader of that route might be?

Post by iconPost by Adrien2008 | 2021-06-08 | 21:20:07
"I don't know if anyone is ahead of Tarahumara on that route"
=> BrEZilian
Post by iconPost by MadNess | 2021-06-08 | 21:28:20
South of Australia : Kan ar mor 29

Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-06-09 | 01:13:06
Thanks guys. I just randomly also discovered Xipairus near Iceland.
Post by iconPost by shockwave11 | 2021-06-09 | 10:12:45
thor 250 is north of the UK heading for Russia. Russia looked very slow after many forecasts so thought id give the shortcut through the NW passages a try.
Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-06-09 | 14:13:25
It should be fun to watch when the North boats turn more East or West, respectively. You can reel off a lot of longitude in a hurry at that latitude. Altough some might be going over the top, which should also be fun to watch (when possible).
Post by iconPost by CRISTAU | 2021-06-09 | 17:41:30
Canada's route Shockwave still needs 360h to finish, Geronimo Groenland's route = 380h; THOR 250 is routed through Canada, I pushed him 10°E, still Canada, 15°E then he goes above Russia and is much more than 380h away; BREZILIAN through Magellan still needs 283h, East of Australia needs 252h, KALLEMANS, West of Australia needs 237h. PINOUCHE, presently 1st, aiming at East of Indonesia, would need 222H if he goes back through Sunda, Toppen (presently the 1st for me) needs 206h to finish. Your Mom is one hour behind Toppen. Let us see the times at arrival.
Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-06-09 | 18:52:03
Thanks. I'm surprised that the routing has Toppen an hour ahead of me, because I thought I'd get to Sunda before him... But I haven't checked his routing so I don't know. Of course, the doldrums can still dramatically change things for everyone.
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2021-06-09 | 21:06:45
What I'm not surprised about is that the race might well be between you and Toppen. Dedication and attention to detail, I guess (and the gut feeling, of course).

I'm mostly on Toppen's track, but a sail change here and there, few missed alarms at 6 AM, and you get 2-hour difference.
Post by iconPost by CRISTAU | 2021-06-10 | 05:18:59
Your Mom only 10mn behind Toppen now at finish, 20mn behind at Sunda straight. It promises an epic end!
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2021-06-18 | 19:38:03
0.04nm ahead right now on the final straight.
Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-06-18 | 13:55:23
I think the "which route to choose" question can be answered now. It might not always work out this way... but probably usually would...

Overall, there were three options. At the gross level, the answer was:

Best - Go between Cape of Good Hope and Australia.
Next - Go between Australia and Cape Horn.
Worst - Go North.

That's unfortunate because it would have been really fun for the North option to have a chance.

Of course, each option had its own secondary choices. I believe only one answer is yet to be decided... whether it was better to get to the Pacific westabout or eastabout.

I believe the granular order of results is...
1-Cape of Good Hope. Push East early, toward Australia, but then return to Sunda Strait. Then South China Sea.
2-Cape of Good Hope and then more directly to Sunda Strait.
3-Cape of Good Hope to any other passage West of Australia. The further East you went, the worse the result.
4-I'm guessing Cape Horn to be the next ones to finish. I believe they're led by Pousstoidlakeuj.
5-Cape of Good Hope, South of Australia to the Pacific. Unless Kan ar mor 29 passes Pousstoidlakeuj.
6 - Northwest Passage. Led by HELA as far as I know.
7-"Over the top". Led by crabefarci as far as I know.
8-Northeast Passage. THOR 250 is just getting to the Bering Strait now. He had a good run for a while, but it's a long way around Russia.
Post by iconPost by Adrien2008 | 2021-06-18 | 14:44:28
5-Cape of Good Hope, South of Australia to the Pacific. Unless Kan ar mor 29 passes Pousstoidlakeuj => Maybe Devdadou
6 - Northwest Passage. Led by HELA as far as I know. => Le Pradetant
Post by iconPost by BooBill | 2021-06-18 | 21:44:27
I thought the question of which route to take was answered by hundreds of years of sail bourne trade to Asia. Ride the roaring 40's as far as you can, then turn north through the Strait of Sunda and up the South China Sea.

People spent hundreds of years and many lives trying to find a northern route. It was then, and even in our globally warmed virtual world where those passages are ice free, it remains, a fool's errand.

Post by iconPost by Pierre | 2021-06-21 | 09:30:23
Congratulations YourMomSA for your 2nd place! Indeed your found the answer to the question asked in this post!
Post by iconPost by CRISTAU | 2021-06-22 | 04:15:58
Just checked the present situation, not much changed compared to the prevision of 09/06, YourMom reduced 1h difference, Pinouche arrived exactly 15h behind, Kallemans also no change 30h behind, Brezilan saved 3 hours from 45 to 42h behind, North routes saved 27-49h but are still far behind.
Post by iconPost by CRISTAU | 2021-06-22 | 04:18:55
If we do this race again, VR should choose a departure more North that would give same time for North and South route, it would be more funny, or nearest from North Pole to nearest from South Pole to have choices more open.
Post by iconPost by YourMomSA | 2021-06-22 | 12:15:04
This one was specifically because the last Olympics was in Rio and the next is in Tokyo. I've always thought it would be fun to do something like Finland to Hobart.

Actually, they could have done Greece to Tokyo. That probably would have made North more viable.
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