Vendee Globe leader Jean Le Cam is now no more than 1,000 from the Horn and has stretched his lead to 261 miles

Le Cam (Bonduelle) the leader of the Vendee Globe is no more than a thousand miles from Cape Horn and has stretched out his lead over PRB (Vincent Riou) to 261 miles and 311 miles over Ecover (Mike Golding).

Sébastien Josse has his strong wind at last. As planned, he is lengthening his stride in the company of Dominique Wavre (Temenos) and Jean Pierre Dick (Virbac-Paprec). Nick Moloney is watching the train heading off without him. Too far north, he is trapped by a tongue of high pressure.

three days the skipper of Bonduelle has been rushing along the northern edge of the same depression. On starboard tack in a south-westerly wind he is careering along making 15 knot averages, reaping the rewards of being in a favourable system. A system which gradually let hold of his pursuers, forced to dive south yesterday to anticipate a shift to the north-west. The latter kicked in yesterday evening, forcing the Riou-Golding duo into another gybe, now under the influence of another chasing depression.

The two skippers hope Jean will ‘run out of breath’ (he spoke of hitting a bit of a park-up this morning), and to come back on him slightly with the north-westerly wind.

Back in 8th, Joé Seeten’s speeds are worrying. He said: “I’ve got 35 knots on the nose; preferring to calm the game down a bit.” The Dunkirk sailor has tacked south onto the wrong side of the anticyclone.

Optimistic at yesterday’s radio session, the American Bruce Schwab doesn’t seem to have got himself out of the woods of New Zealand yet. 400 miles to the west of Arcelor Dunkerque, his Ocean Planet is in the centre of the high pressure, his only option seemingly south. This seems the only action for Anne (Liardet -Roxy), with an established westerly underneath them.

Conrad Humphreys (Hellomoto) and Benoit Parnaudeau (Max Havelaar-Best Western) are making the most of it with a certain advantage for the speedy British sailor while Schwab is detained. Marc Thiercelin (Pro Form) entered the bay of Akaroa last night (0230 GMT), east of the southern island of New Zealand. Marc intends to rest a little before he analyses the situation.

A little earlier (0100 GMT), Patrice Carpentier set out from Research Bay in Tasmania having repaired his boom with what materials he had aboard. Patrice has a light northerly wind, ideal for testing the reliability of repairs. He should be able to round the high-pressure traps blocking Schwab and Seeten.