Published: 07 Dec 2012 12:11 GMT+01:00 | Print version
Updated: 07 Dec 2012 12:11 GMT+01:00
Switzerland's Bernard Stamm has taken the lead for the first time in the solo, round-the-world Vendée Globe race ahead of France's François Gabart, Jean-Pierre Dick and Armel Le Cleac'h, organizers said on Friday.
Stamm took pole position in the southern Indian Ocean after Le Cleac'h, who had held the lead for much of the last 18 days, paid the price for trying to
cut off an anticyclone near the Crozet "ice gate".
The Swiss skipper was the first to pass the virtual marker post on Thursday morning and the first to meet gentle winds -- those slower than 10 knots.
At 2am GMT on Friday, he was sailing at no more than 4.6 knots while Stamm (15.5 knots), Gabart (14.3 knots) and Dick (13.4 knots) were travelling nearly three times faster and more southward, buoyed by more sustained wind.
Le Cleac'h dropped to fourth overall and those in his wake chose to delay heading through the gentle wind zone, crossing their fingers that it will disappear when they head northward to pass Crozet.
Stamm's performance in his third Vendée Globe is remarkable given that his boat Cheminées Poujoulat is the most powerful of the fleet but also the most demanding physically.
The 49-year-old, who is based in the Brittany region of northwest France, has a glittering record in world sailing, having twice won the Vélux 5 Oceans in 2002/3 and 2006/7 and is experienced in the Southern Ocean.
Switzerland will play hosts Sweden in the final of the world ice hockey championships after each side registered a 3-0 semi-final victory over the United States and Finland respectively. READ () »
Jewellery worth more than $1 million made by Swiss luxury watchmaker and jeweller Chopard and due to be loaned to stars walking the red carpet at the Cannes film festival were stolen from a hotel, French police said on Friday. READ () »
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang embarks this weekend on his first foreign trip since taking office, with a stop in Switzerland on the itinerary and free trade talks between the two countries close to completion. READ () »
The Salvation Army band carrying Switzerland’s hopes into the Eurovision Song Contest was vanquished on Thursday night in Malmö, Sweden. READ () »
More than a third of Geneva’s active working population lives outside the canton, with the majority residing in neighbouring France and the rest largely in the canton of Vaud, according to a report issued on Thursday. READ () »
International Cycling Union (UCI) president Pat McQuaid can count on the support of the Swiss federation in his bid for re-election, the sport's global governing body said on Thursday. READ () »
Switzerland headed to the world ice hockey championship semifinals after a 2-1 win over the Czech Republic on Thursday in Stockholm. READ () »
The chairman of newborn mining and commodities giant Glencore Xstrata, John Bond, was on Thursday axed by its annual general meeting in Zug, just weeks after the Swiss-based group was created via a merger of two key players. READ () »
United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon has nominated former Kenyan minister and member of parliament Mukhisa Kituyi to lead the UN's Geneva-based trade and development body when the current chief steps down at the end of August. READ () »
Geneva-based luxury goods giant Richemont boosted net profit for the 2012-2013 year by 30 percent as expected, with strong performances in its jewellery and watch divisions and by favourable exchange rates, the group said on Thursday. READ () »