13 January 2021 - 09:37 • 10548 views

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In fourth position, and only 26.1 miles from the leader in the 5 o'clock rankings this morning, Thomas Ruyant (LinkedOut) is sticking to the right track, despite the absence of his port foil. Feeling strong and with a lucid mind, he talked about his route this morning: 

 
"The same players shoot again! "It's funny when you look at the map and see all these boats so close together after two months of racing. It's quite incredible, it's crazy: it seems no-one can really take off on this Vendée Globe! The weather situation means that we always get back together like this. It's going to be a breathless finish all the way to the end, a lot of things are going to happen, we're all going to arrive on the same day, or even within 48 hours. 
 
The weather configuration is the reason for these regroupings, whether we have foils or not. Because even if we have the capacity to go fast, when we have calm conditions, everybody has to stop. There is not much to do. There are lots of different boats, with different speed capacities; some boats are at 100% of their potential, others less so. I have other foilers around me, which scares me a bit, because we are on starboard tack all the way to the Canaries. Starboard tack is not my favourite side (with the loss of the use of his port foil). I knew this would be the scenario for this climb up the Atlantic. But it’s going to hold and the game is very much still to play for all the way to the end. 
 
There's nothing that compensates for the loss of a foil. I'm going to do the best I can. I'm going to have to regulate my pace all the time, with sometimes more and sometimes less sail up, and find slightly different ways of doing things. But that won't make up for the difference with a boat standing on its foil. I'm at 80° to the wind, and I'm at 15 knots instead of 20, but I'm holding on. 
 
As far as the weather is concerned, it's much better than yesterday, it's stabilised at least. There are still a few variations in strength and direction, you have to be really on it to adjust your direction. We're starting to get some wind, with a trade wind that is slowly picking up and will open up as we head north. There are going to be some nice high-speed reaching tacks for the foilers... 
 
It's hot, you can smell the Brazilian delicacies, I'm in my pants! Yesterday I stuck out my tongue. Luckily, the conditions allowed me to go on deck, so I went out to catch some of the fresh air. I'm not a fan of hot weather, but I'm okay at night. It’s been warming up for a week now, it's good to feel the boat drying out. The corners in the cockpit are dry, and I don’t have that permanent dampness anymore. Lots of heat is not my thing, but it's still good to feel the boat getting drier.”