The British skipper on Hugo Boss took 48 days 23 hours and 40 minutes to sail from Les Sables d’Olonne, where the race started on 6th November. He rounded the legendary cape one day 23 hours and eight minutes after Banque Populaire VIII (Armel Le Cléac’h).
The furthest behind Thompson has been was 819 nautical miles on the night of Friday 23rd December but on the 0400hrs Christmas morning poll this Sunday, Hugo Boss is 498 miles behind Banque Populaire VIII. Le Cléac’h is just to the east of the Falklands Islands and is making 10.4kts.
Comfort and joy are in short supply among certain skippers of the 19 who are still actively racing. A formation of three wise men is evident under Tasmania as Ireland’s Enda O’Coineen (Kilcullen Voyager Team Ireland), Switzerland’s Alan Roura (La Fabrique) and Eric Bellion (Commeunseulhomme) group have deliberately closed together in mutual support as they set out to deal with a strong low pressure which is due on Tuesday. So too, 1400 miles to the east, Nandor Fa – now in eighth place following the official abandonment of SMA. Paul Meilhat – is taking avoiding action from the worst of an active low and heading hard north at 12.2kts this morning.
Jérémie Beyou is solid in third place and is expected to reach Cape Horn on Tuesday morning on Maître CoQ. He has had a quick 24 hours making over 460 miles. So too in fourth Jean-Pierre Dick has accelerated and is moving clear of the duo behind him – Yann Eliès and Jean Le Cam.
Now in 16th place 1100 miles behind Fabrice Amedeo, Catalan skipper Didac Costa will cross Cape Leeuwin today on his One Planet One Ocen, a welcome, hard earned Christmas present on his second racing circumnavigation in consecutive years.