Vendee Globe

Vendee Globe

For the first morning in two week Loïck Peyron is not leading the Vendee Globe fleet, and is showing in third. However, Gitana Eighty is as far south as current leader Sébastien Josse (BT), who holds first place overnight on BT, as the pair dive down towards the high pressure zone.

Behind them there has been a small reshuffle, as Yann Eliès climbs to fourth place from ninth yesterday, and is currently taking the more south-easterly line than the front three. Mike Golding (Ecover, GBR) in ninth is now right behind the front runners, and along with Jean-Pierre Dick (Paprec Virbac 2) in sixth is also currently on a slightly easterly heading (153 degrees for Ecover) – more jostling for position, or is it nearly time to break for the Cape?

The answer to that question depends of course on the St Helena High, which this morning is still showing as expanding in diameter as it tracks east. The front-runners are around 600 miles from the very center of the anticyclone, which they can expect to reach in two or three days — all currently seem to be aiming to pass to the west of the light winds zone.

For the first time this week those next in line, such as Dominque Wavre (Temenos II, SUI) and Brian Thompson (Bahrain Team Pindar, GBR), have made little inroads into the leader’s advantage. In fact you have to go back to Steve White in 7th place (Toe in the Water, GBR) before any skipper has taken more than 50 miles out of the front runners. Toe in the Water has now passed the islands of Trinidade and Martin Vaz.

Michel Desjoyeaux, meanwhile, is still storming through to the west on Foncia. Currently hitting boat speeds of around 17-18 knots in the Vendee Globe, Mich Desj’s westerly line seems to be rewarding him with some fast conditions, which he described this morning as like “hitting 40km/h in a ploughed field in a Golf with the tyres pumped right up!”. Foncia is currently around 200 miles west of the main group, and 80 miles west of Dominque Wavre in Temenos.

Bernard Stamm on Cheminées Poujoulat (SUI) has again posted the highest Vendee Globe 24-hour distance covered, taking over 100 miles out of the leaders in the past day.

Vendee Globe Standings

Updated 29 November 2008

  1. Sébastien Josse – BT
  2. Armel Le Cléac´h – Brit Air
  3. Loick Peyron, Gitana Eighty
  4. Yann Eliès – Generali
  5. Jean Le Cam – VM Matériaux
  6. Jean-Pierre Dick, Paprec Virbac 2
  7. Vincent Riou, PRB
  8. Roland Jourdain – Veolia Environnement
  9. Mike Golding, Ecover 3
  10. Marc Guillemont – Safran<
  11. Brian ThompsonPindar
  12. Dominique Wavre – Temenos
  13. Samantha DaviesRoxy
  14. Michel DesjoyeauxFoncia
  15. Dee CaffariAviva
  16. Arnaud Boissières – Akena Vérandas
  17. Steve WhiteToe in the Water (Spirit of Weymouth)
  18. Jonny Malbon – Artemis
  19. Unai Basurko – Pakea Bizkaia
  20. Rich WilsonGreat American III
  21. Bernard Stamm – Cheminées Poujoulat
  22. Raphaël Dinelli – Fondation Océan Vital
  23. Norbert Sedlacek – Nauticsport-Kapsch
  24. Derek Hatfield – Algimouss Spirit of Canada
  25. Jean-Baptiste Dejeanty – Maisonneuve

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