Armel Le Cléac’h on Banque Populaire has held Alex Thomson on Hugo Boss at bay overnight as the leading pair reach the latitude of the Canary Islands.
Click image for a larger image
Le Cléac’h had a slight speed advantage at the 12:00 UTC rankings, but Thomson has since reversed that and wsa 5 knots faster at the 15:00 report.
Thomson's Hugo Boss is positioned around 100 nm south-west of Le Cléac'h's Banque Populaire VIII.
Talking to his team last night Thomson said he had been resting as much as possible in preparation for several days of fickle breeze before better winds fill in from the south-east to take the pair almost all the way to Les Sables.
Jérémie Beyou in third is now 561 nm adrift of the leaders, posing them little threat, but his podium spot is seemingly secure for now with Jean-Pierre Dick in fourth more than 500 miles behind him.
LEADING POSITIONS at 22:00 hrs UTC Saturday:
1. Armel Le Cléac’h on Banque Populaire - DTG 1,547 nm - sailing at 12 knots
2. Alex Thomson on Hugo Boss - DTL 105 nm - sailing at 11 knots
3. Jeremie Beyou on Maitre Coq - DTL 553 nm - sailing at 12 knots
4. Jean-Pierre Dick on StMichel-Virbac - DTL 1,064 nm
5. Yann Elies on Quigunnier - DTL 1,352 nm
6. Jean Le Cam on Finistere Mer Vent - DTL 1,360 nm
7. Louis Burton on Bureau Vallee - DTL 2,668 nm
Fleet spread is now 8975 nm back to Sebastien Destremau in 18th.
Eleven have now retired from the race.
Gerald New - Sailweb
14 January 2017 8:05 GMT