Jean Luc Van Den Heede is benefitting from a clear game plan – he is where he always wanted to be – riding the top of the Azores High.
He has done this route many times before, and now has a few days of good fast sailing to the finish.
But will it last?
If he goes too far east, probably not, as in two days it will become light and variable, which will require some delicate decisions on where to next.
However, if he turns north tomorrow and goes through the Azores fast enough, a huge ladder to the north may open up for a week of favourable winds and he could simply fly away from Mark Slats – possibly.
Who knows, as the game continues?
If he gets it right and the ladder falls before Mark Slats gets to it, Van Den Heede could create an unbeatable lead just one week off the finish.
The ETA for whoever wins is likely 1st February.