Kiwi Brian Petersen summed up conditions for the Melbourne to Osaka fleet from the nav station on Maverick II this afternoon.
"We are enjoying another day of near perfect conditions. 12-15 knot SE trade winds, smooth seas, lovely puffy little clouds, beautiful deep blue water. Only thing missing is a COLD beer.
Last night's sked had some good news and not so good news for us. We have been able to put more time on the boats behind us, but the boats on the coast put time on us. They must have been having excellent conditions all the way up the coast.
But, fans, be patient, we'll pass them yet. Maybe tonight's the night.
We are currently 136 miles south of Cato Island, a small unlit reef, which we will pass close by tonight, so eyes open team.
Another 60 miles on is Wreck Reef, which we should leave about a mile to port, another 60 to Kenn Reefs, which we should pass about 3 miles to starboard.
After that it's pretty plain sailing 830 miles to Rossel Island, the eastern most point of Papua-New Guinea and the start of the Solomon Sea.'"
Maverick II is tonight 166 miles seawards of Fraser Island's Indian Head, aiming for New Guinea. They are now neck and neck with the boats on the coast, but they don't have to cross the current.
The overnight leader Lulu is in sight of Sandy Cape, the northern tip of Fraser Island. Tonight she will sail north along Breaksea Spit before leaving the Australian coast and heading north into the Coral Sea.
Only 8 miles astern is the US registered X-Dream with Club Marine Wizard 11 miles further south.
Plantronics Duo Pro is midway between Maverick and the Fraser Island Beaches.
Early this afternoon No Fearr left Coffs Harbour with a shiny 50-cent coin and $1.50 worth of electronics they needed to bring their electronics displays back on line.