Gitana Eighty passed a pleasant night, her controls set to auto pilot on a sea like a pancake. It at last offered Loïck Peyron and Jean-Baptiste Levaillant a chance to rest after the plethora of minor repairs effected on board. This event amounts to the first full-scale test for the striking blue monohull, so it's normal that some adjustments need to be made, but with a week's racing under her belt, she is showing every sign of confirming the high hopes invested in her. This morning, as the big ocean race begins to hit top gear, Gitana Eighty is zipping along at 15 knots, mainsail and large spinnaker up. The next islands in view are part of the Cape Verde archipelago, which should be reached at the end of the day tomorrow.
For Gitana 11, meanwhile, there was a night of rest before entering the doldrums: Lionel Lemonchois explained this morning that they had tried to relax as much as possible so as to attack this crucial day in optimum style. Bright and early this morning, they were already haring along at over 25 knots with mainsail and gennaker up, whereas Groupama had got caught in a very violent squall. So the duo being advised by meteorologist Sylvain Mondon has opted to adopt a much more offensive strategy.
Next release at 18:00