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17 January 2001
 

Rhythm of the Race The rhythm is variable.  Slow and tense for the leader, getting faster as you move back.  Voila Fr. still in the Southern Ocean is thundering along at 15 knots.

Standings table 

Top 3

1.  PRB 38 South 37 West
2.  Kingfisher 42 South 46 West + 348 miles 
3.  Active Wear  46 South 45 West +599 miles

Fleet round up section

On the 67th day of this Vendee Globe Yves Parlier has finished stepping his 18 meter mast and is back underway after his stop over in New Zealand.  

Leader PRB continues to sail under 10 knots of speed in under 10 knots of wind.  Michel Desjoyeaux is still hindered by the high pressure surrounding him.

Ellen Macarthur has sailed Kingfisher 72 miles closer to Desjoyeaux.  She has taken a more westerly position to try and skirt the windless high.  Still, the difference in compass course is only 10į.  It's small decisions like this that must constantly be made.

3rd place Active Wear gained 80 miles.  Mac Thiercelin is taking a more easterly route than either PRB or Kingfisher.

Skipper Communications

Roland Jourdain Sill "The wind is dying and the Atlantic is testing our nerves to the limit. I hoisted the main sail fully as if it was some ritual and danced ceremoniously on the foredeck! Iím pretty happy now. If you were to give me the choice of the ten most beautiful girls in the world or my main sail, Iíd take the main sail! Thatís coming from a man whoís been alone for 2 and a half months too!.... But we are just drawn in by the competition now so it doesnít leave us time to reflect much."


Catherine Chabaud Whirlpool "Passing Cape Horn is such an emotional moment, a landmark full of history and you canít escape from thinking about all the other sailors who have passed through these waters. The natural lay of the land never changes, itís beauty is so powerful because of all of this."

Ellen Macarthur Kingfisher "Well itís been a very frustrating night..Nothing I seem to have done will make Kingfisher go! Itís been a struggle. I just hope that poor apparent lack of speed is a pure illusion, and the position reports show this, though with the others in a different weather system now itís doubtful it will be a good indication.  Iíve changed from 2 reefs and solent to full main and genoa. Iíve had ballast in and out, Iíve even lifted up and down the daggerboard to check there was nothing caught on it..."

Current Weather For the leaders steady sailing breezes for all except for PRB which has 9 knots while the others have from 14 to 16 knots.

Weather Forecast The west side of the high still looks to have better winds in the next 24 hours.

What does it all mean

As the lead boats of the Vendee Globe fleet sail in the same general area as the Race Class cats, it is worth noting that on the 66th day of The Race boats are expected to be finishing.