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Sea Sure 2020 - LEADERBOARD

PARLIER TAKES LEAD ON OCEAN HIGHWAY SOUTH

by Philippe Jeantot on 18 Nov 2000
The 20 ­ 30 knot ENE wind is not giving the leading boats in the 4th edition of the Vendée Globe an easy time, as they
try and swiftly position themselves further West. Michel Desjoyeaux (PRB) confessed that after making a first
decision to gybe and get more West, he soon gybed back again as in fact « It wasn¹t a good option. Yves Parlier has
taken the lead again. »

Several skippers have tried this option as well, even if it costs dearly in the rankings, because the route is then not
directly South. On the other hand, Thomas Coville (Sodebo) feels he is playing his cards right : « I gybed twice last
night. I think that these miles gained in the West will be worth gold later on. Better to do it now in good winds than
later when you are at their mercy. » Consequently the shuffle in positions this morning can be explained by this tactic.

The momentum of this leading group continues to gather pace. Catherine Chabaud (Whirpool) made an interesting
comparison between racing on a high-tech monohull in this edition of the race, with the Œred cigarette¹ yawl she raced
on 4 years ago: « The sensations are similar to those on a racing multihull sometimes. I am so surprised at the speed
differences between the two boats. Going at top speed is deafening, powerful, and in a word, stressful. »

In a few days, the fleet will reach the North side of Cape Verde. Now is the time to rest up, do the Œspring-cleaning¹ as
Roland Jourdain (Sill Matines La Potagere) put it, and let the autopilot do the helming. Mich Desj added « these boats
will still go quickly in light airs so the Doldrums shouldn¹t pose any real problem. » Most skippers have full main and
genoa, as in 25/30 knots they¹ll put away their gennaker. Ellen MacArthur (Kingfisher), still going 'a donf!', gave us her
sentiments on the run down to the roaring forties: «I should get my head stuck into some weather study to prepare
myself for what lies ahead. The descent to New Zealand is the one thing I haven't done before so I'm impatient to get to
that point.»

The second group of boats have had their own battle through the Gran Canaria gateway. Richard Tolkien (This Time ­
Argos Soditic) recounted that after passing this waypoint 2 miles ahead of Joe Seeten (Nd Pas de Calais/Chocolats du
Monde) and 7m ahead of Patrice Carpentier¹s Open 50 (VM Materiaux), he then « decided to head out West for 2/3
hours to get a better wind angle for heading South. It looks like I've lost 25 miles but I am 80 miles further West and in a
better position when the winds ease off. » The last of the fleet, except Russian skipper Fédor Konyoukhov (MUH),will
pass through the gateway at midday today.

On land Mike Golding (Team Group 4) is finally ready to leave. Last night his mast was stepped and the sails were on
by this morning. He¹ll go for a test sail at 1600hrs French time today, before heading out of Les Sables d¹Olonne on the
evening tide. Patrick de Radigues (La Libre Belgique) is still undergoing medical tests and trying to arrange for his boat
to be lifted from the beach.


Radio Chat Extracts

Thomas Coville (Sodebo): 'I was a little to out East but benefited from a good breeze to reposition myself well. I gybed
twice, quite easily, which made me lose some ground on the others. After the Canaries, what margin we can gain to the
West is like gold! When becalmed, or when the wind is directly East, it's impossible to get West.'

Patrice Carpentier (VM Matériaux) : 'Bad day yesterday. I had to gybe twice in 2 hours. I passed the gateway up with
Seeten and we crossed. I have 17 knots of good wind, at 140 degrees to the true wind and my keel is right over! A few
days ago, when my speedometer went below 10 knots I thought I had stopped!'

Ellen MacArthur (Kingfisher) : 'This morning, we're advancing well Southwards with 25-30 knots from the
East-Northeast. A couple of minor breakages, but nothing serious. For now I'm just going to keep going 'a donf!' I
should reach the Doldrums in 2 - 3 days and get my head stuck into some weather study to prepare myself for what lies
ahead...the descent to New Zealand is the one thing I haven't done before so I'm impatient to get to that point.'

Michel Desjoyeaux (PRB): ' Finally wearing a T-shirt! I am in 15 - 22 knots of favourable wind and the boat's making
good progress. I put up the gennaker and full main sail overnight and the autopilot is driving masterfully - haven't
touched it since the Canaries! So in the meantime I sleep, listen to music, flick of the fish flying onto my deck...all very
peaceful! I'm not concerned about the Doldrums as these boats can get through the light airs fairly quickly.'

Roland Jourdain (SILL Matines La Potagère) : 'Got a bit hot last night trying to reef in my gennaker in 30 knots of
wind...I was alongside Thierry Dubois then but things are now going really well. I am under full main sail and autopilot.
Done some spring cleaning earlier and I am about to send you some film. Ate my first flying fish last night with lemon
juice..excellent!'

Josh Hall (EBP-Gartmore): 'Everything is going just perfectly, there's 25-30 knots from East, Northeast, great surfing - I
am under main sail and gennaker, the boat's planing at 23 knots! I made an error in my heading for about 5 hours when I
thought the wind would change but it didn't...so I lost 50 miles. But in the Doldrums I should catch up and get into a
better position. Otherwise I just having such a great time on the water, definitely in my element!'

Pasquale de Gregorio (Wind): ' I am 12.5 miles from the Canaries gateway, all is well, and I have found the problem with
my desalinator. With 5% of the race done I want to pace the boat for the rest of the race which will be more difficult. As
for me I am going to put on a T-shirt soon as it's starting to heat up!'

Richard Tolkien (This Time - Argos Soditic): 'Well, I think I've slipped back a little as I've gone out West after passing
the Islands in order to get a better wind angle for heading South but maybe I made a mistake? I passed the gateway 2
miles ahead of Joe Seeten. I gybed at 1.30am and headed West for 2/3 hours while they went South. Looks like I've lost
25 miles but I am 80 miles further West and am in a better position when the winds ease off. As for my genoa, the
sewing's done, but if I can't re-rig it at sea I may have to stop at Cape Town - I hope that won't be necessary. Josh Hall
asked me if I was missing the office - I replied 'What's an office?''


Latest Ranking* at 0630hrs (UT):

No. Boat Skipper Latitude Longitude Heading **Average Speed ***DTF Miles from leader

1 Aquitaine Innovations Yves Parlier 19°29'N 20°41'W 207 16.20 22004 0
2 PRB Michel Desjoyeaux 20°18'N 21°31'W 211 14.90 22022 18
3 Active Wear Marc Thiercelin 20°49'N 21°05'W 214 15.40 22072 68
4 Kingfisher Ellen MacArthur 21°33'N 21°33'W 216 15.20 22080 76
5 Armor Lux - Bizac Foie Gras Bernard Stamm 20°50'N 20°20'W 203 15.20 22085 81
6 Sodebo Savourons la Vie Thomas Coville 21°24'N 20°43'W 217 13.90 22107 103
7 Sill Matines La Potagère Roland Jourdain 22°25'N 20°39'W 210 14.40 22128 124
8 Solidaires Thierry Dubois 22°24'N 20°53'W 211 14.40 22138 134
9 Whirlpool Catherine Chabaud 21°44'N 17°45'W 196 12.70 22150 146
10 EBP - Esprit PME - Gartmore Josh Hall 22°49'N 19°56'W 213 13.30 22187 183
11 Union Bancaire Privée Dominique Wavre 22°27'N 17°28'W 203 13.50 22224 220
12 Euroka - Un univers de services Eric Dumont 24°06'N 16°52'W 197 11.90 22323 319
13 VM Matériaux Patrice Carpentier 25°15'N 16°02'W 209 11.80 22404 400
14 Nord Pas de Clais - Chocolats du

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