Image above courtesy of Expedition Navigation Systems and PredictWind. See a bigger version here. If you can't see the whole of the table below (this depends which browser you use), scroll down to the bottom of the page.
Positions at 0830 GMT
|1||Michel Desjoyeaux - Francois Gabart||FONCIA||37 24.86' S||28 46.70' W||20.4||123||16.3||391.3||20157.5||0|
|2||Jean Pierre Dick - Loick Peyron||VIRBAC-PAPREC 3||36 10.44' S||29 21.94' W||20.3||134||16.5||396.3||20208.4||50.8|
|3||Alex Pella - Pepe Ribes||ESTRELLA DAMM Sailing Team||29 09.71' S||25 16.68' W||11.4||129||11.1||267.5||20244.4||86.9|
|4||Kito de Pavant - Sebastien Audigane||GROUPE BEL||27 52.05' S||24 49.69' W||11.9||156||11||264.3||20275.5||118|
|5||Iker Martinez - Xabi Fernandez||MAPFRE||32 30.73' S||29 55.03' W||16.5||137||12.9||308.7||20329.5||172|
|6||Dominique Wavre - Michele Paret||MIRABAUD||27 06.47' S||25 56.95' W||12.2||151||11.3||272.2||20350.4||192.9|
|7||Pachi Rivero - Antonio Piris||RENAULT Z.E||25 34.90' S||25 24.69' W||10.7||166||10.8||258||20390.9||233.3|
|8||Boris Herrmann - Ryan Breymaier||NEUTROGENA FORMULA NORUEGA||25 35.67' S||25 50.14' W||11.6||165||10.8||260.2||20407||249.4|
|9||Dee Caffari - Anna Corbella||GAES CENTROS AUDITIVOS||24 30.72' S||25 27.02' W||10||177||9.2||220.6||20437.3||279.8|
|10||Wouter Verbraak - Andy Meiklejohn||HUGO BOSS||24 16.01' S||27 42.51' W||11.8||162||10.3||252.8||20535.7||378.2|
|11||Juan Merediz - Fran Palacio||CENTRAL LECHERA ASTURIANA||21 38.82' S||25 30.01' W||10.1||150||9||216.3||20564.8||407.2|
|12||Jaume Mumbru - Cali Sanmarti||WE ARE WATER||20 58.03' S||25 47.24' W||10.4||162||8.8||210.7||20606.1||448.5|
|13||Gerard Marin - Ludovic Aglaor||FORUM MARITIM CATALA||21 14.27' S||29 44.30' W||12.4||161||7.9||190.5||20743.5||586|
|ABD||Jean le Cam - Bruno Garcia||PRESIDENT|
With Michel Desjoyeaux's Foncia taking the lead of the Barcelona World Race at the final sched last night, so we are getting slight Vendée Globe deja-vu. Although following his pitstop in Recife, Desjoyeaux' recovery in this race isn't quite the same as he managed in the solo non-stop round the world race two years ago, when he set off late from Les Sables d'Olonne and dramatically clawed his way back up through the entire fleet eventually to win, the longer term effects of Foncia's pitstop and her subsequent westerly track down the South Atlantic over this last week could be equally impressive.
Despite not yet having made it into the Roaring Forties, conditions for Foncia and her neighbour Virbac Paprec 3 are similar to the optimum they can expect in the coming weeks - surfing along ahead of a front attached to a depression centred deep in the Southern Ocean. Thus this morning finds these two boats in 30 knot northerlies averaging 16+ knots while the boats to the west are not only more headed in easterlies breeze, but there is also significantly less of it, only around 15 knots. As a result they are making 11 knots. In between as ever, Iker Martinez and Fabi Fernandez aboard Mapfre are still slow, but should key into the Foncia/Virbac Paprec 3 breeze later today which should propel them up past Groupe Bel and Estrella Damm and into third place.
At the latest sched Foncia has 835 miles to go before she reaches the mandatory waypoint of Gough Island (which she must leave to starboard) and in theory at her present speed this will get her there on Sunday morning. Unfortunately the GFS model has the front overtaking Foncia sometime tomorrow and come Sunday morning Gough Island is engulfed in high pressure.
But this is of little consequence for what may prove to be this Barcelona World Race's winning move may have already occurred: while the leaders will end up wallowing on the final approach to the waypoint, there is no good news at all for the group currently to the east of them. They are too far north to enjoy the strong winds off the front, which in any case are forecast to receed south over the course of tomorrow. From this morning on, the winds will just get lighter and lighter for Estrella Damm and the boats astern of her as the high pressure regains hold of the South Atlantic. They can look forward to a weekend without wind as a 400 mile wide barrier of calm develops ahead of them. By the time they reach Gough Island, Foncia could already be into the Indian Ocean. Game over?