In a close race at front of fleet Vincent Riou takes lead from Jean Le Camm 6/6/07

Consistency is certainly paying off for Vincent Riou on PRB who now leads the Calais Round Britain and Ireland Race which started on Sunday.

Riou took the lead from Jean Le Camm (VM Materiaux) yesterday afternoon during the light airs approaching the southern tip of Ireland. Although team PRB is just under two miles ahead of Le Camm and team, Riou is making fractionally better speed. Also not far off is Dominique Wavre on Temenos who has, over the last couple of days, been consistently making gains on the leading two. Riou commenting from the racecourse said: “I am astonished by Le Camm who is always fast. The race here [at the front] has started to turn into a duel but the atmosphere on board our boat is good and I am very content with the boat.”

Leading the next batch – in fourth place – is Bernard Stamm on Cheminées Poujoulat who’s currently 36 miles off the leader, but one of the biggest gains made during the night was the British team headed by Sam Davies on Roxy. This team, who’s now taking the inshore route round the south-western corner of Ireland, has skipped ahead of Aviva (Dee Caffari) and Artemis Ocean Racing (Jonny Malbon) and slotted into fifth place.

Malbon and team have dropped a place overnight and are now sixth but as predicted the entire fleet is starting to bunch up in the light winds and there are now only 40 miles between the leader and seventh placed Aviva.

Last night Caffari wrote about a frustrating day’s sailing “?We are now starting to suffer as our mast and therefore sail area is smaller than the newer boats. Artemis has been closing in on us all day from being a speck on the horizon, we have now greeted each other with a bottom salute as they sailed along side us this evening.?We are headed for the Fastnet Rock which is now only 30 miles away from us? Moral onboard is good and we have even broken out the freeze dried food today and were all quite impressed with the good tastes we savoured. I have to be honest though and say that the Haribo sweets are still the firm favourite.??Aviva has to also admit to carry extra weight onboard this morning as we have been giving a lift to a pigeon. It has fully inspected the deck and left it’s mark and every time we encourage it to leave it returns to us.”

The forecast shows little improvement over the next couple of days which means as the fleet bunches up off the west coast of Ireland more position changes are expected.