Gartmore’s track over the past few days of the third leg of the EDS Atlantic Challenge has snaked randomly southwest but, claims Josh Hall, his eye has never left the ball

Gartmore is fifth and last of the Open 60s with a realistic chance of winning the third leg of the EDS Atlantic Challenge. Their path through the middle of the fleet appears to have bisected the logic of staying north for stronger winds or heading south for favourable ones.

Skipper Josh Hall has been watching the weather all the while and attempting to place Gartmore in the path of some helpful weather. Yesterday they covered 226 miles – the best in the fleet – and he expects the next few days to match them and reduce his 349-mile deficit on Sill.

“We are really, really pleased,” said Hall. “We have had an exciting last 24 hours. Looking to the week ahead it appeared to me that there were a bunch of newly formed lows spinning off the US mainland and that the best winds would be further south.”

Meanwhile, Sill and Kingfisher are dropping south towards the Grand Banks, preparing to pick their way through the thick fogs that result from the warm, northbound Gulf Stream meeting the cold, southbound Labrador current.

Add a scattering of fishing boats to the equation and some occasionally calamitous weather (The Perfect Storm happened over Grand Banks) and you have a very nerve-wracking and far from decided finish to this leg.