Sailing: Field plots advantage

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The Independent Online
THE breaking point on the fifth leg of the Whitbread Round The World Race was emerging yesterday as Ross Field's Yamaha extended its overall lead and Pierre Fehlmann's maxi, Merit Cup, began to pull away again from its rivals, writes Stuart Alexander.

The key to the gains was that both skippers were heading north in search of an early escape from the doldrums, and into the north-east trades to take them through the Caribbean and up to the finish in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

WHITBREAD ROUND THE WORLD RACE Fifth leg (Punta del Este, Urug, to Fort Lauderdale, Fla) Positions, with miles to the finish: Maxi class: 1 Merit Cup, 2,844; 2 New Zealand Endeavour, 2,869; 3 La Poste, 2,905; 4 Uruguay Natural, 3,099. Whitbread 60s: 1 Yamaha, 2,824; 2 Galicia '93 Pescanova, 2,860; 3 Intrum Justitia, 2,884; 4 Winston, 2,895; 5= Brooksfield, Heineken, 2,924; 7 Hetman Sahaidachny, 2,993; 8 Odessa, 3,130; 9 Dolphin & Youth, 3,839; 10 Tokio, 4,200. BT Results Service.