Jean-Pierre Dick hedges his bets

Jean-Pierre Dick (Virbac Paprec 3) has decided not to stop in the Azores, but is still not sure if he will go all the way to Les Sables d’Olonne. In Saturday's live TV show on Vendée Globe TV he said he would: "Get closer to the Portuguese coast and then I’ll see what I can do, depending on what I see there in terms of conditions. On the 28th or 2th of January, I’ll decide if I can round Cape Finisterre safely."

Jean-Pierre continued: "The wind is much stronger now, 25-30 knots, with an agitated sea and 3-4-metre waves. The boat is doing ok in the waves, it’s actually a good surprise. My ballasts are full and I’m sailing at an average speed of 12 knots, which is encouraging for the future. The weather should get a little rougher in the afternoon and then calm down."

"I’m not obsessed with speed, I just can’t use larger sails, it is much more reasonable now that my keel is gone. And I owe it to the shore crew and the people who have worked with me, I just can’t take too much risk. My next challenge is Cape Finisterre, where the sea is going to be rough."

"What Alex Thomson is doing is so nice and brave. The third place is very important, I want him to take very good care of it. What he’s doing is a nice gesture, a true sailor’s gesture. He’s not close enough for me to talk to him on the VHF so we send each other emails even though we’re both is energy-saving mode. I have his phone number, I’ll call him after this interview. I thought I had seen his lights last night but it must have been a star."

Friday, Alex Thomson decided to change its course to stay close to Jean-Pierre Dick last night and this morning. Hugo Boss skipper proves once again that there is a great solidarity among competitors in the open sea. Both gentlemen skippers have exchanged emails.

Vendee Globe - Rankings Saturday, 26 January 2013, 15:00 hrs (UK)
1. Macif, François Gabart - 361 to the Finish Line
2. Banque Populaire, Armel Le Clac'h, 112 nm to the leader
3. Virbac Paprec 3, Jean-Pierre Dick 925 nm
4. HUGO BOSS, Alex Thomson, 934 nm
5. SynerCiel, Jean Le Cam, 2466 nm
6. Gamesa, Mike Golding, 2530 nm
7. Mirabaud, Dominique Wavre, 2795 nm
8. AKENA Vérandas, Arnaud Boissières, 3020 nm
9. Acciona 100% EcoPowered, Javier Sansó, 3155 nm
10. Votre Nom Autour du Monde avec EDM Projets, Bertrand de Broc, 3415 nm
11. Initiatives-coeur, Tanguy De Lamotte, 3804 nm
12. Team Plastique, Alessandro Di Benedetto, 4598 nm