Overnight the big gains have been made by Gary Lewis’s 88 footer Shaman, the cruiser is currently in second place on line behind Giacomo. Between 10pm last night and 7am this morning the crew increased their lead over 3rd placed Ran Tan II by 17nm. Shaman must have found her conditions as she averaged 12.4 knots.

Miss Scarlet who has been in the pack with Shaman and Ran Tan II, sadly reported this morning at 0745 that they have broken their forestay, and are continuing to Fiji under jury rig.

Another standout performance over the past 24 hours is Crusader35 which has passed both Allegro and Anarchy. They are currently averaging better speeds than Allegro, Anarchy and Cotton Blossom II.

The Fiji weather stations are reporting at 0600 that the wind is already in on the coast, with 8 knots plus recorded close to the finish (and a warm 20 degrees). To the south of the fleet in Auckland, it is a bleak 7 degrees and rain.

Itchy Feet remains the boat closest to NZ, just 250 nm north of North Cape. The yacht has not been heard from since yesterday morning, and for a period last night was advancing at less than 2 knots. Race management have attempted to contact the yacht by Sat Phone but without success. This morning we still have not heard from them, but as theyare proceeding at a steady 5.5 knots, there is no concern for their safety. Efforts will be made again today to contact them.

But luckily this afternoon we learnt that the boat had been in email contact with their NOK. All is well, they are in rough weather and will continue their course for another day, and as we suspected point their bow at Fiji after the front. More to follow.

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