Having passed the Kerguelen islands the VOR fleet has some big decisions to make on whether to go north or south

The Volvo Ocean Race fleet passed the unofficial waypoint and tactical hurdle of the Kerguelen Island over the last couple of hours, with race leaders djuice clearing the French outpost at 0518hrs GMT this morning, 15 minutes ahead of the speeding Team News Corp.

In an e-mail earlier today, illbruck navigator Juan Vila outlined the tactical dilemma of passing Kerguelen, explaining: “The main reason for our northerly option is to keep into stronger breeze ahead of a low pressure wave that is forecasted to develop in the vicinity of the Kerguelen tomorrow. If this happens, breeze should be lighter south of this wave, with winds building from the north. On the other hand, forecasts in this area are not as reliable and there is always the rule to consider; ‘in case of doubt, go south’.”

The north or south question was answered with a 50/50 split. Leaders djuice and Team News Corp (three miles astern), followed by Amer Sports One stuck to their fast southerly path while illbruck, Team SEB and ASSA ABLOY opted for a northern route past the lone Southern Ocean island. Only Amer Sports Too has yet to clear the island.

Position Report Leg Two, Day 9, 1000hrs GMT


2 NEWS (3 miles from leader)

3 AART (30 miles from leader)

4 ILBK (43 miles from leader)

5 TSEB (53 miles from leader)

6 AONE (105 miles from leader)

7 ATOO (357 miles from leader)