Brian Thompson takes the lead with fellow Brit Simon Curwen in fifth

Five days in to the second leg of the Transat 6,50 from Lanzarote to Salvador de Bahia in Brazil, Briton Brian Thompson aboard Lighthouse Life Foundation has taken the leading position in the 52 strong Mini fleet.

Not far behind in fifth place after taking a spectacular easterly flyer is fellow Brit Simon Curwen, who came fifth in the first leg and became the first non-French competitor in.

Thompson suffered a major set back in leg one as he discovered a leak into one of the watertight compartments alongside the keel. This amounted to 400 extra litres of weight to the boat which normally weighs only twice that, and in the predominately light airs of the first leg slowed Thompson’s progress considerably. Depsite this Thompson still finished in seventh on the first leg but was disappointed by not making the top five. Now it appears that he is back on form along with a watertight boat after hauling out and re-sealing the offending keel bolts in Lanzarote.

Other British competitors; Sam Davies is chasing leading woman Jeanne Gregoire in ninth place. Paul Peggs is 21st with Ian Munslow 24th, and Mike Inglis in 28th place.

The leaders are now only 100 miles from the Cape Verde Islands, a major psychological way point for the skippers as it marks a third of the way through the race. After that the Minis will race to the Equator and cross the Doldrums before the final run to Salvador. The leaders are expected to arrive around the 1st of November.

Nathalie Le Pen