In an amazing charge which has lasted 30 days, Michel Desjoyeaux yesterday roared into second place of the Vendée Globe solo round the world race.
Desjoyeaux, who won the race in 2000, when Ellen MacArthur was second, had been forced to turn back soon after the start on 9 November to repair leaks in the ballast system of his open 60, Foncia.
He restarted with 40 hours to make up. Last night he was just 30 miles behind the leader, Jean-Pierre Dick in Paprec-Virbac after overtaking Roland Jourdain in Véolia.
Still fourth is Britain's Mike Golding in Ecover, 15 miles ahead of Sébastien Josse in BT.
Making six knots on a north-westerly track away from the worst of the gales and ice which threaten a leading group pushing their boats and themselves relentlessly is Loick Peyron. Now under jury rig, his Gitana Eighty was dismasted on Wednesday.
Discounting Peyron's still official ranking, Britain's Brian Thompson was 12th in Bahrain Team Pindar, Sam Davies 14th in Roxy, Dee Caffari 15th in Aviva, Steve White 17th in Toe in the Water (Spirit of Weymouth), and Jonny Malbon, 1,275 miles behind Dick, 18th in Artemis.