Golding closes in on front trio as Peyron pulls out

As Loïck Peyron is forced to abandon the race, Jean-Pierre Dick leads the way ahead of Roland Jourdain and Michel Desjoyeaux, who made an impressive comeback. Britain's Mike Golding lags just 34 nautical miles behind the French leaders.


Five boats lie within forty miles of the leader at the front of the Vendée Globe fleet as Michel Desjoyeaux recovered the third place, held until 24 hours ago by the unfortunate Loïck Peyron.

Otherwise, the news is all about the unstoppable advance of Mich Desj, who has gained two places this morning. After setting off 40 hours and 670 miles behind the pack, he is now up there in the box seats. His Foncia boat has been making 16 knots every hour to 0930hrs GMT this morning.

Emotions must be running close to the surface for the leaders, their hands forced by the pace of Desjoyeaux who is now up with them. But the dismasting of Gitana provided a jarring reminder of what fate can deliver at any unexpected moment. Add to this Mich Desj's report of ice this morning, and the tension must have racked up another notch.

Jean-Pierre Dick (Paprec-Virbac 2) has a lead of 35.4 miles over Roland ‘Bilou’ Jourdain on Veolia Environnement, while Desjoyeaux is a nominal third, polled to be just one tenth of a mile behind Jourdain.

Ranking on Dec. 11 at 1600 :

1-Jean-Pierre Dick (Paprec-Virbac 2) at 15 609,8 miles from finish

2-Michel Desjoyeaux (Foncia) 31 miles behind the leader

3-Roland Jourdain (Veolia Environnement) 31,3 miles

4-Mike Golding (Ecover 3) 33,5 miles

5-Sébastien Josse (BT) 48,7 miles

Intenational selection:

11-Dominique Wavre (Temenos II) 245,8 miles behind the leader

12 Brian Thompson (Bahrain Team Pindar) 558,3 miles

14-Bernard Stamm (Cheminées Poujoulat) 584,2 miles


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