After days of neck and neck racing when the two Clippers seemed to be joined by a piece of elastic, Liverpool and Glasgow have finally parted company.
Overnight Adam Kyffin and his crew aboard Liverpool sailed a more northerly course, which this morning has put them some 20 miles to the north north east of Glasgow. Whether Rupert Parkhouse and his crew deliberately chose not to follow is uncertain, but they could well be regretting this as Liverpool's move has given them a 10 mile boost. Although not a lot in mid ocean, at a current average speed of about 8 knots, this translates into over an hour's lead, potentially crucial come the finish line.
Just over 50 miles behind Liverpool Clipper, Roger Steven-Jennings and the crew on Cape Town have had a good run and are slowly reeling in the rest of the fleet, but the star of today's show is Chris Hazeldene and the crew aboard London Clipper with an average speed of just under 9 knots. Although still a long way behind Richard Butler and the Bristolians, they are well placed in the middle of the fleet and steering a good course towards Cuba; the current positioning will also make it extremely hard for 4th placed Hong Kong to overtake.
A few days ago it seemed as if lighter winds to the north might slow New York Clipper's leading charge and favour the boats in the south. Whilst the former has happened to a degree, the other boat to be affected by lighter winds has been Jersey Clipper under the helm of current duty skipper Ed Green.
Ed has put in an official request for different weather as he is not happy with he is currently experiencing. Contrary to what the forecast has been giving, Ed reckons that the rest of the fleet (all bar the New Yorkers) are experiencing approximately 15 knots more wind. With the lowest day's run it is, he says, as if the boat is sailing with a ton of house bricks strapped to its hull!!
04:00, 27 November 2002
Pos Yacht Distance to Finish
1 New York 1599.27 (nautical miles)
2 Bristol 1746.93
3 London 1817.72
4 Hong Kong 1890.74
5 Jersey 1945.37
6 Liverpool 1983.70
7 Glasgow 1994.04
8 Cape Town 2038.08