by OC Events
Marc Guillemot on Safran
Last night's question now has its answer - Generali crossed behind Foncia at 4:00 this morning and dropped back into second place when Yan Elies gybed. The two skippers probably came in sight of each other at that moment... Speeds have been consistent (11 to 12 knots) while the fleet progressed downwind, and the gap in latitude reaches 78 miles now, Generali being still North while BT and Brit Air are holding their South position.
Safran moved back into the game in terms of velocity, which seems to indicate that Marc Guillemot can cope with his pain. Now the question is where to cross the high pressure ridge - for the moment the northeasterlies are still blowing moderately, but tomorrow looks very very quiet.
Stricken but not down. If the whole fleet was hit yesterday night by tough conditions, Marc Guillemot took the most serious blow, as he explained over the phone when we were able to reach him this morning: 'I was under spinnaker and the wind picked up, so I decided to reduce sails before it became too rough. I did, and tried to get some rest inside, but suddenly the boat went faster and faster, and eventually crashed gybed.
I was holding on to the grinder pedestal, I had the mast in the water, and it took me 25 minutes to clear everything up. When I cooled down a bit I realised that I felt a strong pain. My rib might be broken, I don't know yet but anyway even if it is there's nothing to do about it. I'm heading south, but I'm not considering pulling out for the moment. I really want to go to Boston.
For Sam Davies (Roxy), making the right move at the right moment was quite obvious, as she explained: 'Roxy did wipeout, but it was minor, as if to tell me it was time to take the kite down.' Hearing the warning, the young British skipper complied: 'I've put the gennaker on. It's actually quite nice now, but still 22 knots of speed this morning, I'm being really careful, I make sure i'm clipped on when I manoeuvre. These boats are dangerous, everything happens so quickly. And I really hope Marco [Guillemot] is alright now. I've had a broken rib a few years ago, it's very painful.'
Jean-Luc Nélias's tactical analysis
'The skippers have many moves to make, right up to the ice gate. The first was without doubt the passage of the ridge yesterday, the second will be crossing by the north the low pressure system today, the third without doubt a new high pressure ridge with very light winds, and the fourth. We won't do all the work for them in case the skippers check this page.
IMOCA 60 Leaderboard - Pos - DTF - DTL - 06:00 GMT update - 14 May
1 Foncia 2149.5 0.0
2 Generali 2157.0 7.5
3 BT 2159.5 10.0
4 PRB 2159.7 10.2
5 Gitana Eighty 2164.7 15.1
6 Brit Air 2173.9 24.4
7 Roxy 2275.0 125.5
8 Akena Vérandas 2292.0 142.5
9 Safran 2299.1 149.5
10 Spirit of Weymouth 2336.0 186.5
11 Cervin EnR 2348.7 199.2
12 Aviva 2384.1 234.6
13 Pakea Bizkaia 2009 2412 262.5
IMOCA 40 Leaderboard - Pos - DTF - DTL - 06:00 GMT update - 14 May
1 Telecom Italia 2413.5 0
2 Appart City 2428.3 14.8
3 Mistral Loisirs - Pole Santé ELIOR 2439.9 26.4
4 Groupe Royer 2441.6 28.1
5 Beluga Racer 2445.7 32.2
6 Groupe Partouche 2447.1 33.6
7 Custo Pol 2447.2 33.7
8 Fujifilm 2448.3 34.8
9 40 Degrees 2450.3 36.8
10 Clarke Offshore Racing 2468.6 55.1
11 Prévoir Vie 2516 102.5