Still 240 miles south of Joyon's track, B&Q continues to build on her time advantage to nearly 16 hours at 1510 GMT: 'We're trying to make a course of due east rather than dropping into the south because at the moment the breeze is basically from the north-west which makes it very difficult for us to climb to the north. But that breeze is going to drop back into the west and then we're going to gybe over and head south east.' The 30-40 knot NW air flow will continue through today decreasing by this evening. On Thursday afternoon a cold front will pass through and the breeze will turn to the south-west late Thursday or early Friday morning instigating a gybe on to starboard heading south-east. This will start a series of gybes over the next few days as Ellen manoeuvres B&Q in front of the depression ensuring she doesn't get too far south where the stronger breeze and bigger waves can be detrimental to the boat's performance.
The pace may be hot but the temperatures are starting to drop: 'Things are getting a little bit chilly and the water temperature has dropped down to about 15 degrees. The sky is very grey and the sun has dissappeared - we're in our first Southern Ocean depression. We're actually at 38 south so I'm almost officially in the Southern Ocean. You're generally in when you're under 40 degrees south, so it definitely feels like the Southern Ocean. We're heading down there for a long time so mentally things are changing and physically things are obviously changing too as it gets colder.'
With less than 853 miles to the longitude of Cape of Good Hope [18 29 degrees east], <> is certainly in the running to set a new solo time to this next major landmark. To beat Joyon's time of 19 days, 20 hours and 31 minutes, Ellen will have to cross the longitude of the Cape of Good Hope before 0441 GMT on Saturday, 18th December and with shade over 2 days left to do this, it is certainly possible: 'We don't seem to have any huge light patches of wind - maybe a few hours tonight - and on the whole we should be able to keep up a pretty reasonable speed between now and the Cape of Good Hope which is a good indication that we may well be able to pass underneath that Cape ahead of Francis' time.'