Paprec-Virbac 2 has gone south

Damian with iceberg behind - photo Paprec-Virbac 2

Paprec-Virbac 2 has gone south and is now in the mine field - ice! As you can see in the photographs the franco-irish crew do not have much wind down at 54° 32 South, and the iceberg in the picture is actually different to that spotted by Francis Joyon.

The Barcelona World Race Committee opted to change Ice Gate C on the race course after the French solo skipper reported ice just over a week ago. Paprec-Virbac 2 is now heading north East but their speed is still very slow due to their location south of a large area of high pressure

Jean Pierre Dick describes the emotion of seeing ice so close to the boat;

'There is rush of adrenalin at first when your reaction is 'Whoa! What am I doing here?!' and that we should get out of fast, but soon after you see it, it's a bit of a relief because you know exactly where it is. It's clear how to escape and then you can enjoy the beauty of it a little bit.

But the fear is there you are scared of seeing others... tonight I’m a bit stressed talking to you. All the time I am looking at the radar - it could happen - if you suddenly see a radar echo in front of you, you have to decide what to do, do you luff or bear away? I just hope I don't wake up in the middle of the ice!'

Back on the race course Paprec-Virbac 2 their speeds are up after a lighter spell yesterday, Hugo Boss however seem to have hit some light air but are still chomping up the miles lost during their stop over.

Educacion sin Fronteras
Temenos II had south west wind force 4 decreasing to 3, 2 then 1 at 01.30, then at 02.45 had North North West force 2 although this morning they had no wind at all. They are now 64 miles from the Farewell point.

Mutua Madrileña is approching the South Island of New Zealand, she will have to tack to get to Cook strait, and is 500 miles from Temenos, gaining 50 miles during the night. Educación sin Fronteras continues to be the fastest boat with average speeds of 18 knots and gaining 87 miles on Mutua Madrileña overnight

Veolia Environnement has reached Fremantle in Western Australia after an epic journey of exactly two weeks under jury rig when they last their mast on 17th December. Jean-Luc Nelias and Roland Jourdain have reached land just in time to see in the New Year with their families in the Southern Hemisphere.

Positions at 14:00 hrs 31 Dec 2007

1 Paprec Virbac 2 9,780 nm
2 Hugo Boss + 778 nm
3 Temenos 2 + 1664 nm
4 Mutua Madrileña + 2121 nm
5 Educación Sin Fronteras + 2736 nm