Although the order in the Volvo Ocean Race fleet remains unchanged tonight and movistar (Bouwe Bekking) still leads, Brasil 1 (Torben Grael), the most northerly boat, found the wind they needed at approximately 1830 GMT and is romping away at nearly 12 knots. She is above the latitude of the ice gate, but still is still heading north in search of good breeze. The eastern end of the gate is 148 nautical miles due east of her. ABN AMRO TWO is also positioned to the north, but has yet to reach the new wind.
The rest of the fleet, which chose the southerly option, is facing an upwind slog of 150 nautical miles to reach latitude 48 degrees, and, according to Bouwe Bekking, hating every minute of it. “These are the days when you want to hang your sea boots up forever,” he says, “but I can imagine the others hate life more, as movistar has done alright in the last 24 hours.
The next 12 hours or so will be critical and a clearer picture will emerge as to who really is the winner in this strategic game of ocean chess.
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