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Volvo Ocean race - False Start ?

Vestas, team AkzoNobel and Dongfeng are off and sailing . . . They have opened a 10 nm gap on MAPFRE and the rest of the Volvo Race fleet early this morning.

In a typical 'the rich will get richer' scenario, the leading three have picked up the new pressure to get a jump-start on the rest.

MAPFRE and Turn The Tide have also begun to benifit, leaving Scallywag and Brunel the losers.

But, this could be a 'false start' with the forecast showing another area of light winds to contend with when the fleet closes on the equator, still some 60 miles to the north.

If this does indeed mark the end of the doldrums, the race will shift focus now into a drag race - a relentless speed contest in the northeasterly trade winds.

But watch for another twist around the equator . . . it's not over yet.

Volvo Ocean Race - Leg 4 - Thursday 11 January @ 19:00 UTC

1. MAPFRE -- distance to finish -- 3,057 nautical miles
2. Turn the Tide on Plastic +2.6 nm
3. Vestas 11th Hour Racing +2.8 nm
4. team AkzoNobel +2.8 nm
5. Dongfeng Race Team +4.1 nm
6. Team Brunel +19 nm
7. Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag +27 nm

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