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Rhythm of the Race 13 boats have now passed the equator and are sailing in the Southern Hemisphere. This contingent is sailing upwind.
1. Aquitaine Innovations Yves Parlier 6:4
South 27:3 West
2. PRB Michel Desjoyeaux 5:5 South 28:2 West + 54 miles
3. Sill Roland Jourdain 5..1 South 29:0 West +103
Front to back: AI (green image on sail) PRB, Sill, Kingfisher (blue and yellow hull)
Fleet round up section
Over the last 24 hours Yves Parlier and Aquitaine Innovations have added 20 miles to their lead. 3rd place Sill has gained 19 miles on 2nd place PRB.
While the splits amongst the top 3 may have changed they are still lined up east to west in the following order: AI, PRB, Sill.
The top 3 are bracketed by the race's two female skippers. Catherine Chabaud is in 4th, keeping Whirlpool to the east. Ellen Macarthur has Kingfisher on the western edge of the fleet in 5th. Although they are separated by 5 full degrees of longitude, the standings say that is equivalent to 3 miles.
Josh Hall EBP-Gartmore "The other boats will have to go East in the near future, so Iím in a good position, although the ranking doesnít look good it will do in a weekís time!"
Richard Tolkien This Time Argos Soditic ". I need to get up the mast to attach the block and lead a halyard at a right angle to rehoist the genoa."
Bernard Gally Voila Fr. "I passed the Equator at 0500hrs this morning, and I woke up just 300 metres after the passage! So I broke open one of the half bottles of champagne which Philippe Jeantot gave me and a dram of whisky from Sir Robin KNox Johnston."
Thierry Dubois Solidares "To eat sleep and
read now is the order of the day, not much else to do upwind!"
Patrice Carpantier VM Matťriaux "Otherwise I am re-reading my íCourse au Largeí letters from four years ago and was amazed that I passed the Equator at the same moment as Parlier did on Aquitaine Innovations then, I was delighted!"
Joe Seeten Nord Pas de Calais - Chocolats du Monde "The problem aboard is really with communications, which keeping failing one after the other. I have no more standard B, no more standard C. I am left with the Mini M which will become limited geographically very soon. Itís going to be Cape Horn before anyone can hear me again."
Thomas Coville Sobedo "It is durability & reliability which will make the difference. He who breaks less will remain ahead. In the South if you break a stay itís catastrophic. Iím not taking tactical risks now with 3 or so months to go, I shall leave that for when we come back up the Atlantic."
Ellen Macarthur Kingfisher "MENU TODAY :
Macaroni Cheese for lunch, Chicken Curry and Apple Crumble for dinner! It really
sounds good today...
Roland Jourdain Sill "I have a 20cm thick mattress on my bunk, which I havenít taken advantage of since the start of the race! Iím sunbathing on the odd occasion, but taking precaution as the ozone layer isnít great!"
Current weather conditions Trade winds sailing for the leaders force 4 east by south east.
Weather Forecast Expected similar conditions for up to 10 days as the the fleet uses the trade winds to skirt typical Atlantic high pressure systems.
What does it all mean
With the trade winds in force the passing lanes would seem
to be largely shut. It should be smooth sailing until 40į, then come the