The gap between the seven frontrunners and the 21 skippers trying desperately to keep up with them has turned from a gully into a chasm. Life could not be much better for those at the head of the fleet; with winds of more than 30 knots transforming their 60ft IMOCA yachts into waterborne rockets blasting southeast at top speed. The frontrunners, led by Alex Thomson's Hugo Boss who had the biggest 24 hour tally of 492.4 nm, are due to arrive at the Cape of Good Hope, the southern tip of South Africa and the gateway to the Southern Ocean, on Friday, four days ahead of schedule.
Nevertheless, while the rich get richer, it stands that the poor get poorer. And those in the middle of the Vendee Globe fleet are among the hardest up, snared by the St Helena High with little sign of her relinquishing her grip. Continue to follow these intrepid adventurers on the high seas here.