Leaders of La Solitaire du Figaro rounded the Fastnet Rock at 18:30 hrs Tuesday . . .
First round was French skipper Xavier Macaire (Groupe SNEF) just ahead of Armel Le Cleach (Banque Populaire) who made an amazing recovery from his poor start.
They continue in a very tight pack, with 18 of the leading pack within 10 nm, on the return to the finish back at Baie de Saint-Brieuc, France.
Update at Wed 10:00 hrs UK:
Now in second place as they head towards the Scilly Isles are Frederic Duthil (Technique Voile) and Alexis Loison (Region Normandie).
With Armel Le Cleach fourth and fifth Tom Laerche (Bretagne CMB Espoir) all within 3 nm of the leader.
Irish skipper Tom Dolan (Smurfit Kappa) has dropped back to ninth.
For the Brits, Sam Goodchild (Leyton) is in 10th, Phil Sharp (OceansLab) 15th, Jack Boutell (Fromagerie Gillot) 20th and Alan Roberts (Seacat Services) is 29th.
For all the 35 skippers now the big challenge is managing themselves on a fast reach back to Saint Quay Portrieux where they left Sunday afternoon.
The fleet is expected to compress significantly in the final miles to the line.