A bit of a mixed bag - like the sky…
Now with four rounds on the scoreboard, Gitana 11 remains in a favourable position for a place on the podium in the Grand Prix de Galice. Gitana X, however, is not that at ease in light fickle winds.

The sky has not fallen in on their heads on Saturday, but with skies every bit as changeable as the atmosphere, varying from light air, through thermal breezes right through to brilliant sunshine. The heat was on as the fleet rounded the race marks too. Lots of pressure on both courses between the four boats chasing an untouchable Groupama-2. The afternoon was alos changeable, with good and not so good results for Gitana 11, with some excellent attackes but a less effective defense !
Racing kicked off with a forty mile coastal course after a start off Vigo which took the fleet over to the Cies Islands then south to Bayona, before heading back to Vigo. A ten knot wind to start with fell of to around three knots leeward of the Cies Islands. Crews kept a permanent lookout for the veins of wind so as not to loose touch with the fleet. Yet ocne again, the gang of four chasing Franck Cammas never the less lost touch with Groupama-2, as she pulled into the lead from the word go and was first out in the bay of Vigo. But there were two interesting duels within a short distance of one another in the third round of the Grand Prix de Galice. On one side, bewteen Géant and Gitana 11, on the other between Banque Populaire and Foncia, as unfortunately Gitana X was again distanced straight away in spite of having made a great start on the starboard tack. 
In spite of having attacked hard and fast, Frédéric Le Peutrec never managed to get ahead of Michel Desjoyeaux before the finish which put three trimarans – behind Groupama-2 the clear leader – into a group with just one point separating Géant, Banque Populaire and Gitana 11 in the provisional rankings.

In th next round, a windward leeward loop starting in Vigo harbour in a 15 knot breeze which gradually dwindled away over the three laps of the course, there were some superb performances. Gitana 11 took a splendid start upwind of the fleet, blocking Groupama-2.  Gitana X made a superb option leaving on the port tack behind all the fleet but on the right hand side of the course where winds were much more favourable. Thierry Duprey du Vorsent and his crew sailed in front of the rest of the fleet on the first tack ! Brilliant !
Unfortunately, the wind was not steady enough however for Gitana X to keep the same devilish rhythm going as could the other five trimarans. Michel Desjoyeaux and Pascal Bidégorry moved into the lead at the first windward mark followed by Franck Cammas and Frédéric Le Peutrec. At the leeward mark which followed, it was a close thing with Géant in the lead but Banque Populaire messed up unfurling his gennaker adn continued in a straight line, much to the joy of Franck Cammas and Frédéric Le Peutrec. The green trimaran was firing on all cylinders and Géant was powerless faced with such superior speed. Michel Desjoyeaux never the less managed to contain the pressure put on by Frédéric Le Peutrec and Pascal Bidégorry who ended up fighting really hard on this last lap. Gitana 11 even lost her place at the third windward mark and never managed to come back to within fighting distance of Banque Populaire.
Sunday promises to be a busy day out on the race course as behind Franck Cammas who already looks out of reach, Pascal Bidégorry and Frédéric Le Peutrec will be fighting hand over fist for the next best place. A blood and guts battle is on the cards !

Rankings – round 3 :

1-Franck Cammas (Groupama-2)
2-Michel Desjoyeaux (Géant)
3-Frédéric Le Peutrec (Gitana 11)
4-Pascal Bidegorry (Banque Populaire) 
5-Armel Le Cléac'h (Foncia)
6-Thierry Duprey du Vorsent (Gitana X)

Rankings – round 4 :

1-Franck Cammas (Groupama-2)
2-Michel Desjoyeaux (Géant)
3-Pascal Bidegorry (Banque Populaire) 
4-Frédéric Le Peutrec (Gitana 11)
5-Armel Le Cléac'h (Foncia)
6-Thierry Duprey du Vorsent (Gitana X)

Provisional rankings - Grand Prix de Galice after 4 rounds

1- Franck Cammas / Groupama-2 – 4 pts
2- Michel Desjoyeaux / Géant – 11 pts
3- Pascal Bidégorry / Banque Populaire – 12 pts
4- Frédéric Le Peutrec / Gitana 11 – 14 pts
5- Thierry Duprey du Vorsent / Gitana X – 21 pts
6- Armel Le Cléac'h / Foncia – 23 pts

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