January 16, 2017

PARIS (AP) British sailor Alex Thomson has set a world record for the most distance sailed solo in 24 hours in the Vendee Globe.

With about 1,000 miles remaining to the finish line in the round-the-globe race, Thomson reduced the gap on leader Armel Le Cleac'h to only 70 miles.

Organizers say the 42-year-old Thomson sailed his Hugo Boss 60-foot single-hull yacht at a speed of 22.4 knots over 24 hours, the equivalent of 25.7 mph, covering 536.8 miles.

The previous record was held by French sailor Francois Gabart, who set a mark of 534.48 miles during the 2012-13 race.

Le Cleac'h and Thomson, who hopes to become the first British winner of the non-stop race, are expected at Les Sables d'Olonne on Thursday after 74 days of racing.

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