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Tour de France - Win for Beijaflore

Another brilliantly entertaining Nautical Stadium race day once again upset the apple carts in the final stretch of the Tour de France à la Voile 2017.

Thursday’s elimination stage and Super Final failed to dislodge the top dogs from their vantage points.

Fondation FDJ – Des Mains et Des Pieds took a solid third to remain poised at the top of the overall leaderboard, 20 points ahead of Team SFS, who looked unusually under par.

While things may look deceptively calm at the top of the scoreboard, a heated battle is raging just below the surface.

Just two more days remain to seal fates in the event that started on 7 July, and while 30 points separate the top 6 teams, only four points now separate the third to sixth-placed boats.

In ranking order Trésors de Tahiti, Beijaflore, Team Oman Sail and Team Lorina Limonade – Golfe du Morbihan.

Thursday’s winners and losers will have to review their tactics on the road as the Tour Voile show ups sticks once again, this time headed for its ninth and final destination of Nice, where a Coastal Raid awaits Friday ahead of Saturday’s decisive Super Final, in which double points are up for grabs.

On the only race day held in Marseille, a well-deserved win from Beijaflore, their second over the 15 race days completed thus far, takes them to fourth place on equal points with third-placed Tresors de Tahiti.

Tying up two wins in the qualifying races, the team of Valentin Bellet, Guillaume Pirouelle and Jason Saunders had clearly found their rhythm and nailed an excellent start in the Super Final to burst off the line together with Vivacar.Fr.

The pair were never more than a few lengths apart for the duration, but it was the Beijaflore boys who managed to squeeze across the line in first place.

Proving that nothing can be taken for granted in this competition, three out of the top four teams in Thursday morning’s overall classification failed to qualify for the Super Final.

In addition to Team SFS, Tresors de Tahiti and Oman Sail also missed out – the latter consequently slipping from fourth to fifth in the general rankings.

Conversely Team Installux Aluminium and Team Occitanie Sud de France made their first Super Final since Act 1 in Dunkirk.

Unfortunately, together with Coved – Paprec, all three crossed the finish line early, putting an end to any hopes for top scores today.

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