Please select your home edition
Edition
SailX 728x90

Vendee Globe - Steady gains as leaders head for Amsterdam gate

by Vendee Globe on 10 Dec 2012
Banque Populaire Jean-Marie Liot / DPPI / Vendée Globe © http://www.vendeeglobe.org
In the Vendee Globe, making their course for the Amsterdam gate - some 800 miles ahead, the leaders are still experiencing small differences in the wind relative to their proximity to the high pressure system to their north which is still influencing them.

But in the heart of the Indian Ocean there are still just 127 miles between first placed Armel Le Cléac’h (Banque Populaire) and fifth placed Alex Thomson (Hugo Boss).

The British skipper and third placed Jean-Pierre Dick have lost some small miles overnight through their course which is slightly more to the north, initially racing in less breeze.

After four weeks at sea the fleet is now very much in four groups, four races around the world.

Since returning to the lead of the Vendée Globe yesterday afternoon Armel Le Cléac’h gained steadily once he had positioned Banque Populaire to the south of his pursuers, sailing faster in more wind pressure. Le Cléac’h has averaged over 14kts, which was latterly being matched by young François Gabart on Macif. The leading duo now have a 67 miles gap back to third placed Dick and the top two are on steadily converging courses, suggesting that perhaps Le Cléac’h, 34 miles ahead of Macif, will struggle to shake off his youthful nemesis with quite the ease which was once predicted.

Bernard Stamm, six miles behind Dick’s Virbac-Paprec 3, is fast again this morning at just over 17kts, the Swiss skipper is making ready to challenge for the podium again, whilst Alex Thomson on Hugo Boss made some initial losses on his more northerly, rhumb line course. But he is fastest among the leaders, four knots quicker than Banque Populaire. Strategies are secondary for the moment as a direct drag race to Amsterdam develops.

Poised to pass the Crozet ice gate this morning, Gamesa’s Mike Golding has been on the outside, south of the course curve which has been profitable for the British skipper, but now he loses some minor miles as he crosses the bows of Jean Le Cam’s Synerciel this morning, consolidating to the gate which they should reach before gybing south-east again to pursue the leaders, still ahead of a beneficial low pressure trough which should allow the trio – Golding, Le Cam and Dominique Wavre – a fast, direct flight to Amsterdam.

Majorca’s Javier Sanso (Acciona 100% EcoPowered) should get some respite this morning after a night of changeable, difficult winds. He now has the Crozet gate 500 miles ahead but he has Arnaud Boissières (Akena Verandas) in pursuit, racing faster on a more southerly course.

Tanguy de Lamotte (Initiatives Coeur) in 12th place is approaching the Agulhas gate from the north and should pass it this morning, having made fresh bread in anticipation last night. And Alessandro di Benedetto (Team Plastique) has done well to position himself nicely for the passage of a stormy low pressure which will give him winds over 40kts, but the Franco-Italian skipper is already well to the south.

Related Articles

Shape of next Volvo Ocean Race revealed at Southern Spars - Part 1
Southern Spars has been confirmed as the supplier of spars for the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. In mid-April, Race Director, Jack Lloyd and Stopover Manager Richard Mason outlined the changes expected for the 40,000nm Race during a tour of Southern Spars 10,000sq metre specialist spar construction facility. A total of up to seven boats is expected to enter, but time is running out for the construction of any new boats.
Posted on 3 May
Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr
From Olympic flag to Olympic Gold and maybe another
The Sydney Olympics was a Sailing double 470 Gold event for Australia. Having won the 420 World Championship in 2000, the feeder class to the 470, while still at school in Australia young Matt Belcher was given the honour of carrying the Olympic flag during the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
Posted on 28 Apr
The Road to Rio now 99 days short
The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win. The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres, at some World championship events and Weymouth World Cup but for many crews: 'It's 106 miles to Chicago we got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses.' Whoops wrong movie.
Posted on 28 Apr
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
Thou doth protest too much, me thinks
And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen about now. At any rate, it is simply an adaptation of Lady Gertrude’s original line. We merely seek to use it as a way to demonstrate that when there is a lot of brouhaha going on, the smoke screen ultimately ends up as a lovely, colourful flag as to the real intent behind it.
Posted on 18 Apr
An interview with Jake Beattie about the 2016 Race to Alaska
In 2014, Jake Beattie and a few friends envisioned the Race to Alaska. Now, it’s time this wild race’s second edition. In 2014, Jake Beattie-the executive director of the Northwest Maritime Center in Port Townsend, Washington, and a few friends hatched the bold idea of a human-powered race to Ketchikan, Alaska, took flight. They decided that their human-powered race would start in Port Townsend, Washington and run to Ketchikan, by way of the inside passage between Vancouver Island and British Columbia.
Posted on 14 Apr
Children of the Internet, Rio and Hong Kong
I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. The kind of conversations I have with her run along these lines.... In the olden days we did not have television until I left school and they had a thing called print magazines, that reported events between two weeks and four months after they happened. And her sceptical response... Hoh! Daddy, Hoh!
Posted on 14 Apr
Go fast girls - 49er FX sailors Paris Henken and Helena Scutt
Paris Henken and Helena Scutt will be representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics, which will be their first Olympiad. American’s Paris Henken (20) and Helena Scutt (23) recently won a berth to represent the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the high-performance 49er FX skiff, a goal that the team has been working on for almost three years. While this is their first Games, writing them off as Olympic newbies would require ignoring their recent results and their strong teamwork.
Posted on 13 Apr
World Sailing Cup V3 - A Dead Rat in a Shoe or Spring Daffodils?
While a host of major sailing events go from strength to strength, the Sailing World Cup has very major issues. Last night my Irish better half was sitting beside me on the sofa watching an Australian version of the popular TV Cooking Program My Kitchen Rules on a tablet with her headphones while I was watching Diehard II for the seventeenth time (it’s a boy thing) on TV. She suddenly spluttered and laughed, took off her headphones and motioned for me to mute Diehard. (Seriously!!)
Posted on 9 Apr
Barz Optics - Kids rangeKilwell - 1Southern Spars - 100