This is a sad loss for the race as CASENEUVE on Group Acanthe was, alone with Ross HOBSON's (GBR) Mollymawk, one of the favourites. This means Roger LANEGIN (FRA) on Branec IV has regained the lead which he had been enjoying in the opening days of the race. He is though being chased hard by 'the underwear boat' Cotonella. Skipper Franco MANZOLI (ITA), who was the first round the Eddystone Light shortly after leaving Plymouth, is looking to stamp his mark at the front of the multihulls.
Many of the boats have been reporting high winds on the fourth full day at sea, Peter KEIG (GBR) on Zeal was in a southwesterly force six to seven and Ronny NOLLET (BEL) on La Promesse was in 30 knots of northwesterly.
The Open 40s are starting to spread even further than Wednesday if the 1300 reports from on board are to be believed. Patrice CARPENTIER (FRA) is taking the boldest step heading furthest north and at present it is paying off. The closest boat to him is Michael KLEINJANS (BEL), who has also been heading north, but slightly more moderately. After reporting problems with hydraulics yesterday, Pieter ADRIAANS (NED) would appear, from his distance sailed, to be back on track.
The sirens on the southern coast of Ireland who had lured two of the skippers have released one. Gerry HUGHES (GBR) who put into Cork, Ireland, informed the race office that he had completed all the electrical work unaided and had left port to rejoin the race at 1700 on Wednesday. The other, more unfortunate skipper, Bram VAN DE LOOSDRECHT (NED), with his dismasted Octavus, has arrived safely under the watchful eye of the Irish coastguard and is looking at his options regards getting the boat home.
In the middle of the Corinthian fleet Tony WALDECK (GBR) was well reefed down and sailing at seven knots. He reported it to be good going and was thoroughly enjoying himself.