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16 July 2004, 10:51 am
Karine Fauconnier Holds Lead
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Foncia© Yvan Zedda

Transat Québec-Saint Malo

Although Karine FAUCONNIER (Sergio Tacchini) continues to lead the 60ft Multihull fleet at the Transat Québec-Saint Malo she is far from clear of the pursuing pack.
Giovanni SOLDINI aboard Tim Progetto Italia, her biggest threat right now, is tracking up from the south and is just 32nm astern. Fauconnier chatted from the boat this morning commenting: "...We're not counting on it… We aren't the only ones to advance well! This lead could still melt like snow in the sun."

Thomas COVILLE and team aboard Sodebo are lying in third place, just two miles ahead of Michel DESJOYEAUX on Geant. Franck CAMMAS and team on Groupama have made a quick recovery after their pit stop two days ago see previous news story here and are now up to sixth position. Things are looking dismal for Yves PARLIER'S recently-launched twin-rigged, 60ft hydroplane Médiatis-Région Aquitaine. This new, extreme machine was designed to make a serious impact on the ocean racing scene but seems to have serious speed problems. Having taken the best start of the fleet on Sunday, she is now over 600 miles behind the leader after just six days at sea.

In the 50ft multihull fleet Franck-Yves ESCOFFIER aboard Crêpes Whaou! has started to stretch out a good lead over the other four boats in the fleet. At the 0500 position ranking this morning he'd cleared Newfoundland and leads Mike Birch on Bonjour Québec by 91.5nm.

Georges LEBLANC'S Ciment St-Laurent in the monohull fleet is currently holding off Luc COQUELIN on Marina Fort Louis Ile de Saint by 24nm while Roger LANGEVIN on Branec III is trailing the fleet by 61nm.
Sue Pelling/Yachting World
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