With an 80-mile lead on the final stretch of the Mini Transat, Sam Manuard is going to be a tough cookie to crack

The leading boats on the second leg of the Mini Transat are currently facing strong winds as they head towards the finish line at Bahia. With over 25kts gusting 30-35kts overnight and the forecast of strong winds continuing, the excitement on the last stretch to the finish line will make up for the quiet days spent wallowing in doldrums.

In these conditions, the leading boats are likely to arrive at the finish slightly earlier than expected with Samuel Manuard (pictured left), winner of the first leg from La Rochelle to Lanzarote, still leading the fleet by over over 80 miles from Armel Tripon. Alex Pella and Pierre Rolland are in third and fourth respectively in the prototype fleet. Interestingly, Jonathan McKee is still racing, despite problems reported by the race organisers, although he has failed to pass the required island of Fernando to starboard. The organisers are still however, unable to confirm if McKee has broken his mast but say he’s heading towards the coast together with Sébastien Roubinet who seems to be in the same situation.

Manuel Castilla is retaining the lead of the production boat fleet but only by six miles from David Sineau. Chris Sayer the unofficial new Zealand entry has, despite a nine-hour late second-leg ‘start’, has worked his way up the fleet from last to an unofficial eighth.

Latest positions

1 431 Samuel Manuard TIP TOP TOO – GRAU DU ROI PORT CAMARGUE proto S103386 W0360063 0202.9 miles to the finish

2 151 Armel Tripon MOULIN ROTY proto S093073 W0351093 0282.2 miles to the finish

3 240 Alex Pella AQUATEC – SANTIVERI – TEXKNIT proto S084355 W0345206 0341.9 miles to the finish

4 347 Pierre Rolland EXTRADO proto S082803 W0343725 0363.2 miles to the finish

5 247 Jonathan Mc Kee TEAM MC LUBE proto S074093 W0344276 0397.7 miles to the finish

6 260 Richard Mérigeaux BON PIED BON OEIL proto S074850 W0341205 0409.7 miles to the finish

7 354 Bruno Garcia SALADINO proto S071761 W0332906 0460.5 miles to the finish

8 353 Willy Garcia CEYLAN DIAMANTES proto S071566 W0333013 0461.3 miles to the finish

9 312 Pascal Doin ASNQ proto S070616 W0333686 0464.5 miles to the finish

10 303 Enrico Podesta DIABOLO-SLAM proto S070208 W0330248 0489.5 miles to the finish

11 139 François Cuinet REGLISSE proto S063436 W0333516 0490.8 miles to the finish

12 385 Jaime Mumbru PORT DE BARCELONA proto S064650 W0331168 0495.5 miles to the finish

13 258 Marc Gascons TIP-TOP proto S061746 W0331850 0514.3 miles to the finish

14 167 Manuel Castilla VISION ORIGINALE serie S060565 W0333216 0516.0 miles to the finish

15 428 David Sineau FRANCE FERMETURE serie S054921 W0334488 0522.7 miles to the finish

16 326 Ian Munslow ISHTAR proto S054470 W0334191 0528.1 miles to the finish

17 421 Michel Mirabel GWALARN IV serie S061866 W0324251 0535.4 miles to the finish

18 318 Yann Riou THRANE & THRANE serie S054978 W0330790 0542.8 miles to the finish

19 426 Erwan Tymen POGO 2 NAVY LEST serie S060801 W0324218 0543.9 miles to the finish

20 440 David Raison RAYON LIQUIDE serie S053285 W0331360 0553.5 miles to the finish