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30 December 2000
 

Rhythm of the Race Speed and stress ramp up as leaders ride fast on another low pressure system.

Standings table 

Top 3

1.  PRB 53 South 166 West
2.  Sill 54 South 169 West + 112  miles 
3.  Kingfisher 54 South 171 West +163 miles

Fleet round up section

Of the top 3 Kingfisher had the best of it the past 24 hours, reducing her distance to the leaders to 163 miles.  Ellen Macarthur explains her gains: "I chose the good option, I have followed the low pressure to get the Southerly winds. Thomas (Coville) did the same but was less lucky and lost a few miles. Marc (Thiercelin) went further North. I was also lucky that the two ahead were stuck by a little ridge. They have the wind from behind which means less power."  

2nd place Sill is now closer to Kingfisher than to Sill.  At last report Sill was the slowest of the top 3 at 10.3 knots.

PRB maintains the lead and is the fastest of the top 3 at 13.7.  All in all, not a bad situation for Michel Desjoyeaux.

Yves Parlier is readying to take a few days to add to Aquitaine Innovations mast.

Thierry Dubois will make a hoped for 48 hour pit stop with Solidaires.  It's become a multi national operation to get Dubois the parts he needs.

Skipper Communications

Ellen Macarthur Kingfisher "All is going really well. I am heading East, I have 15 knots of wind and I have no problem. As the conditions were good, I went up the mast. The boat is in good state, I have already broken three sails, so I must be careful with the ones left. I hope they will last until the end."

Marc Thiercelin Active Wear "I have sixty DVD movies, I just miss the pop corn and the ice cream! Recently I have watched Asterix, and yesterday it was a De Niro movie. I read a lot, write my chronicles."

Dominique Wavre UBP "I canít predict whatís going to happen in the next 15 days but I canít see the situation reversing. I was expecting to see the situation invert but Kingfisher has really come out of it on top! I asked myself what great indignity I must have caused to Neptune and Aeolus to have suffered like this."

Bernard Gallay Voila Fr. ". Whoever is at 179 East on the 31st December can celebrate New Year twice! Iím going to make some great food Ė Isabelle Autissier has left me something, silly decorations. Iíve got a big red nose Ė lots of silly things to keep me amused!"

Patrice Carpentier VM Matťriaux "Iím delighted as Iíve never been so well placed and I still donít understand why Voila.fr isnít going faster! Perhaps heís got too many books on board! Tomorrow night Iíll be halfway, and I never thought Iíd be to the South of Tasmania after 50 days at sea."

Yves Parlier Aquitaine Innovations "Iím heading to Stewart Island".

Current weather conditions Force 6&7 winds for the leaders.

Weather Forecast Continued heavy airs.

What does it all mean

Wise weather watching has gotten Kingfisher closer to the lead.  Proof that there are always options for advancement.