VOLVO OCEAN RACE – Groupama sailing team continue to hold the lead and the furthest east position and at 0800 UTC this morning were charging along at an average of 18 knots — a speed only topped by PUMA Ocean racing powered by BERG and Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing. On the western flange of the fleet second placed the CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand crew were working flat out to claw back miles on the leaders. CAMPER Media Crew Member (MCM) Hamish Hooper described the scenario in his latest report from the boat. “At the moment it’s a slight waiting game until all of the fleet are nose down and pointing at New Zealand when the 2000-mile drag race starts to the Doldrums and a chain of Pacific Islands to penetrate before the last push to paradise. “It’s still full throttle down charging along getting every ounce of speed out of CAMPER to claw back some ground mile by mile. “Groupama have had a tough few skeds being caught further out to the east in lighter wind, which we know all too well about the pain of after recent days,” Hooper wrote. “However, we are short of sympathy for our French counterparts. “Thanks to that we have managed to take a couple of chunks out of their lead, which gave everyone a momentary additional spring in their step. “They are now back up to full speed again, in fact in the latest sked we had the least amount of wind. “It sure is swings in roundabouts. But we push on hard,” Hooper concluded.