Hampshire sailor Alex Thomson is on course achieve a podium finish in the Vendee Globe - but it remains to be seen whether he will become the first Briton to finish the round-the-world yacht race in 80 days.

Gosport-based Thomson, 38, is expected to finish third to reach the finish line in Les Sables d'Ollone tomorrow, but he needs to do so by 1.02pm to make the 80-day mark.

It would be a spectacular achivement in an older boat than those used by his competitors. But he faces some of the worst weather of the entire race and admits: "I don't care where I finish as long as I finish."

Only a disaster will prevent Thomson from breaking the 88-day British Vendee record set by Mike Golding in 2004/05.

He is now within 350 nautical miles of the finish. Meanwhile, Southampton-based Golding is sixth, 70nm behind fifth-placed Jean Le Cam.