Josse’s hard choice is on hold until his weather improves, Michel Desjoyeaux is increasing his lead again

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1500 HRS GMT. Rankings, Saturday 27th December 2008

(FRA unless stated)

1. Michel Desjoyeaux (Foncia) at + 9899.3 miles

2. Roland Jourdain (Veolia Environnement) at + 68.9 miles

3. Jean Le Cam (VM Matériaux) at + 165.7 miles

4. Armel Le Cléac’h (Brit Air) at 338.6 miles

5. Vincent Riou (PRB) at + 375.2 miles

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Day 49: Still waiting to assess repairs as Seb escapes north away from storm

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In brief:
– After suffering a major knock-down in 60 knots yesterday on the 48th day of the Vendée Globe, Sébastien Josse is now nursing BT north to reach calmer conditions to fully assess the rudder system and structural damage.
– Sébastien estimates it will take another 10-12 hours before conditions will have eased enough and it is safe to carry out the assessment.

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A quelques heures de l’arrivée à Fremantle

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Joint à 14h00, au beau milieu de la nuit pour le skipper actuellement aux antipodes, Dominique et son monocoque ne se trouvaient plus qu’à une petite trentaine de milles des côtes. A l’approche de Fremantle, le vent s’était mis à forcir brusquement, une situation à laquelle le skipper ne s’attendait pas et qu’il expliquait par l’influence du cap Leeuwin. « C’est surprenant ce vent, je suis à la cape dans 30 nœuds, d’après les fichiers ça ne devait pas monter à plus de 20 nœuds, j’espère que ça va un peu se calmer pour mon arrivée. »

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UPDATE – SATURDAY, 27 DECEMBER – 0630 AEDT

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As the two canting-keeled maxis Wild Oats XI (Bob Oatley) and Skandia (Grant Wharington) swapped the lead overnight as the Rolex Sydney Hobart pace slowed with the nor’easter fading along the south coast of New South Wales, drama was unfolding further back in the fleet. The crew of the Farr 53 Georgia, owned by Rolex Sydney Hobart veterans John Williams and Graeme Ainley, had to abandon the yacht in a sinking condition after she broke her rudder and rapidly took on water through the rudder shaft last night.

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Temenos II attendu demain à Fremantle

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Partis des Kerguelen le 17 décembre dernier, Dominique et Temenos II touchent au but. Joint à la mi-journée, à un peu plus de 24h de l’arrivée, le skipper s’apprêtait à se lancer dans un dernier empannage qui devait lui permettre de faire route directe en direction de Fremantle où il est donc attendu dès demain par son équipe technique.

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(Knocked) Down but not out, in Boxing Day drama for Josse

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In Brief
. BT knocked down by a breaking wave in 60 knots (110 km/h) of wind during the night (it is just daybreak now for BT)
. Skipper Sébastien Josse is unhurt despite a violent capsize and does not require any outside assistance
. However first inspection reveals serious damage to the boat, but Sébastien’s safety is not compromised, and the race is not over for now at least
. For the mo! ment, conditions are too rough to go outside and carry out a thorough external check or start any repairs

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SKIPPER SAFE, BUT BT SUFFERS MASSIVE WIPEOUT IN 60 KNOT STORM

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The BT shore team received a call from skipper Sébastien Josse today at 11:47 GMT, reporting having been knocked down by the raging seas generated by the storm the leaders have been negotiating overnight.

Sébastien, whose position was approximately 47º37′ S – 159º14′ W (approx. 1000 miles ESE of Wellington, NZ) at the moment of the incident, is safe and sound and does not require any outside! assistance.

Last night in a 60 knot squall, the BT IMOCA 60 was knocked down by a large breaking wave. The boat was pinned down on her side, with the top of the mast under the water, for several minutes before coming back upright, causing damage that Sébastien will assess as soon as daylight will allow him to (approx 15:30 GMT).

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