Bermuda 1000 Race leader Sebastien Simon, the skipper of ARKEA PAPREC, is expected to round the Fastnet lighthouse, early Saturday morning.
He is followed by Sam Davies (Heart Initiatives), who is 7nm back and then Boris Herrmann (Malizia – Monaco YC) 13 nm back, then Yannick Bestaven (Master CoQ) and Maxime Sorel (V and B – Sailing Together).
The entire fleet of 17 competitors is still racing this morning.
As expected, the wind swung last night, gradually moving from the southeast to the northwest. A difficult transition that some have managed very well, like Sébastien Simon, the leader of the fleet.
Simon was only 20 nm from Fastnet at 07:00 hrs and going upwind at more than 10 knots, still pursued by Sam Davies and Boris Herrmann. It will be interesting to note the differences at the rounding of Fastnet.
If four foilers are in the lead, sailors with IMOCA standard fins remain in the game, starting with Maxime Sorel chasing the leaders in sixth place.
After rounding Fastnet, the leaders will have to negotiate a zone of very weak wind, before the arrival of a south-easterly which will take them towards the virtual mark located off the Azores, a little more than 800 nm away.
This morning, the fleet stretches 76 nm between Sebastien Simon and Alexia Barrier (4myplanet) the tail-ender.
The leading 5 at 07:00 hrs Saturday, 11 May:
1. Sébastien Simon (ARKEA PAPREC): 1,724.1 miles from the finish
2. Sam Davies (Heart Initiatives): 9 miles from the leader
3. Boris Herrmann (Malizia – Monaco Yacht Club): 13.3 miles from the leader
4. Yannick Bestaven (Master CoQ): 15.9 miles from the leader
5. Maxime Sorel (V and B – Sailing Together): 16.2 miles from the leader