Leading the fleet, the cover of darkness has given the ranking a real shake-up.
The dismasting at midnight on Wednesday of MACIF (Gabart/Desjoyeaux) means that Vincent Riou and Jean Le Cam (PRB) are the new leaders of the Transat Jacques Vabre’s IMOCA category with less than 1,000 miles to go to the finish. Now up into second place in the ranking is the amazing Safran (Guillemot / Bidegorry), which has been racking up high speeds over the past few days in the shifty tradewinds, which are sweeping the Brazilian coast, at the unfortunate Maître CoQ’s (Beyou/Pratt) expense, which is clearly less at ease in these types of conditions (30 fewer miles in 24 hours).
Some 180 miles astern of the new leader, Cheminées Poujoulat (Stamm/Legros) is also racking up a fine average speed, to the great delight of its crew after a tough passage through the Doldrums. Behind them, a little less than 800 miles back from the frontrunners, the best overnight performance goes to the Polish on Energa with “Gutek” and “Magic”, back to within 25 miles of Votre Nom Autour du Monde (De Broc/Boissières)!