Day 61 highlights of Vendee Globe

Cheminées Poujoulat skipper Bernard Stamm notified the race Direction that he has officially retired from the 2012-2013 Vendée Globe at 5.11 PM Wednesday. Meanwhile the two leaders continue their long ascent up the South Atlantic, Armel Le Cléac’h (Banque Populaire) managed to claw back a few miles this morning reducing the gap between him and François Gabart (MACIF) by 14 miles.Day 61 highlights

According to the Vendée Globe website tracker, the trajectory of Alex Thomson on Hugo Boss is set on the great circle (the shortest path between the start and finish). His course takes him to the South American continent and enables the British sailor to travel a shorter distance faster than Jean-Pierre Dick (Virbac Paprec 3).

If the latter is currently sailing upwind in 20 knots, Alex Thomson has the better angle and faster speeds with a southerly wind of 20 knots. This way Thomson steals miles and this morning was around 60 miles behind Jean-Pierre Dick (Virbac Paprec 3). Now that he is fully powered up, he will be focusing his attention on the virtual third place, showcasing the true talents and ability of the British skipper when he has full visibility of the race course.

It was with sigh of great relief that Arnaud Bossières (Akena Verandas) and Javier Sanso (Acciona 100% EcoPowered) rounded Cape Horn last night at 21:35 GMT and 0:55 GMT. For the two sailors Cape Horn was a welcome site marking the end of a long Pacific crossing.

Vendee Globe - Top Ten Rankings Thursday, 10 January 2013, 05:00 hrs (UK)
1. Macif, François Gabart
2. Banque Populaire, Armel Le Clac'h, 86 nm to the leader
3. Virbac Paprec 3, Jean-Pierre Dick 384 nm
4. HUGO BOSS, Alex Thomson, 450 nm
5. SynerCiel, Jean Le Cam, 1592 nm
6. Gamesa, Mike Golding, 1771 nm
7. Mirabaud, Dominique Wavre, 1926 nm
8. AKENA Vérandas, Arnaud Boissières, 2002 nm
9. Acciona 100% EcoPowered, Javier Sansó, 2036 nm
10. Votre Nom Autour du Monde avec EDM Projets, Bertrand de Broc, 3414 nm