The high-pressure is a bit of a headache for Simon, it’s been following him for several days now, hampering his eastern promises: 52 miles this morning. Behind him it’s an open bar for miles: the whole fleet is catching up. Kirsten and Abhilash are feasting south of the high reducing the gap by 250 and 200 miles respectively, in 72 hours only.
There is no shortage of activity along the exclusion zone, from which Michael is now exiting, heading SE towards 45°S after covering 160 miles last night. Behind him Jeremy is preparing for a strong gale in the evening: 35 knots gusting to 50 knots. Jeremy has received a heavy weather warning from GGR Race HQ yesterday and is ready.
Ian is heading back up to 40°S in search of milder conditions, while Elliott is in for a rude awakening. Early this morning he covered his best distance over 24 hours: 174 miles, equalling Simon, but 3 hours later his bowsprit bent again. He is OK, is receiving weather information from GGR and considering his options either to the west coast of Australia or going back west via a northern loop in the Indian Ocean.
UPDATE: ELLIOTT’S BOWSPRIT HAS BENT UP AGAIN
Elliott has called Race Control at 0820 UTC, reporting that he is OK, currently in 30-35 knot westerlies and that he was able to secure the mast with halyards. He is now considering his options, either carrying on west to Fremantle or going north and then west back to South Africa.
He will find himself in 30-40 knots north-westerlies tomorrow afternoon, with a very quick wind shift to south at midnight. As soon as the front has passed, he will have very calm conditions for multiple days.
Race Control has provided him with the weather forecast for his area and will stay in close contact with Elliott to ensure that he has all available information to make the best decision.