The advantage may only be a meagre mile or two but the illbruck Challenge continues to live up to its pre-event billing by leading the Volvo Ocean Race at 04.00hrs GMT (local time) this morning.

Out into the open Atlantic at the Parallel of 42 degrees North, 150 miles offshore from Portugal, John Kostecki’s illbruck team continue to be pressed by the crews of Tyco, Amer Sports One and ASSA ABLOY every inch of the way.

Alongside the three leading Farr designs, in essentially her first proper offshore racing outing and test, the crew of Amer Sports One continue to be impressed with the pace of their Frers design, an unknown commodity before the start that has performed impeccably so far.

One week befor the start Grant Dalton, skipper of Amer Sports One, told Yachting World in a interview that: “we have to expect to be slower as we sail out of the Solent in to the Channel. If we’re not, then we’ve done some really good work.” Now, four days in to the race, the Amer Sports One team seem relatively happy with the performance of the boat: “So far so good. We think that as soon as we are in a power environment we are okay but fair to say that illbruck looks like a class act, very fast upwind but we are still to see them downwind. ASSA ABLOY and Tyco look good as well. As everyone expects it’s going to be a tough race.”

Volvo Ocean Race leg 1 Position Report 27 SEP 04.00 GMT


1ILBK41 54.08N

00000 00.0 22-Oct-012TYCO41 56.00N00002 00.2 23-Oct-01

3AONE41 59.44N

00003 00.0 23-Oct-01

4AART42 04.76N