Volvo Ocean Race: Dancing for dollars

Published on January 28th, 2018

The Volvo Ocean Race teams returned to the waters in Hong Kong for the fourth stage of the 11-race In-Port Series. Unique to the format, the results from one buoy race and one race around Hong Kong Island were combined to determine the overall rank for the Hong Kong event.

While the Chinese region is far off the round the world course, this detour helps to pay the bills. To offer some entertainment, Volvo Ocean Race teams have In-Port Race events in Hong Kong and Guangzhou plus Leg 5 which connects the cities.

January 27: Team AkzoNobel took the win in the HGC In-Port Race Hong Kong on a challenging afternoon on the waters of Kowloon Bay. The wind during race time was a 6 to 10 knot Easterly, but it was very shifty and puffy, and with a tidal current running on the race course, it was a difficult day for the tacticians. Dongfeng Race Team finished in second place, with Team Brunel third. Full report and video.

January 28: Light and variable wind shortly after the start of the Around Hong Kong Island Race allowed the leading boats to break away as they found new wind pressure first. But it didn’t mean opportunities for passing later in the afternoon were completely closed off. MAPFRE had the best start, and along with Dongfeng Race Team, found the new favourable wind to finish 1-2. Local favourite Scallywag went from being last across the starting line to a third place finish. Full report and video.

Overall: Dongfeng Race Team has the best overall score in Hong Kong after two second place finishes, pulling them into a tie on the overall In-Port Race Series Leaderboard with MAPFRE. Dongfeng is ranked first based on winning the most recent series in Hong Kong.

Next Up: The teams will leave Hong Kong on February 1 for the start of Leg 5 to Guangzhou in China which will include a race on February 3 in the In-Port Series. The teams leave on February 5 to complete Leg 5 to Hong Kong which will host the start of the 6100 nm Leg 6 on February 7 to Auckland, New Zealand.

Pit Row: Vestas 11th Hour Racing was not competing in the Hong Kong In-Port Series as they continue making repairs caused by the January 20 collision with a fishing boat. They will also miss Leg 5 and the In-Port Race in Guangzhou, and have not stated whether they will be ready for the next distance leg, the 6100 nm course which departs from Hong Kong on February 7 to Auckland, New Zealand.

Background: Racing the one design Volvo Ocean 65, the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race began in Alicante, Spain on October 22 2017 with the final finish in The Hague, Netherlands on June 30 2018. In total, the 11-leg race will visit 12 cities in six continents: Alicante, Lisbon, Cape Town, Melbourne, Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Auckland, Itajaí, Newport, Cardiff, Gothenburg, and The Hague.

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