Volvo Ocean Race: Dive, dive, dive

Published on March 19th, 2018

(March 19, 2018; Day 2) – The start yesterday from Auckland saw the seven-boat Volvo Ocean Race fleet sail straight into a 30-knot easterly, with today offering little let-up with winds hovering around 25 knots producing similar boat speeds as the teams begin Leg 7 to Brazil.

An opening day lead for Dongfeng Race Team and MAPFRE saw the deck reshuffled today as the fleet piled into an unpredicted wind hole after rounding the East Cape, with ranking positions now misleading as the direction to the finish is to east but the teams are now focused on the lower latitudes.

With the easterly breeze forecast brought on by an anticyclone due to remain in place for several days before backing, the tactics early on is relatively straight forward – dive south as fast as possible.

Only when the wind turns more to the north will the fleet be able to start the curve towards Cape Horn and the heavy weather that lies in wait further down the line.

“For the next three days it should be quite simple,” Dongfeng’s Kevin Escoffier said. “We’re going straight south towards the ice limit, then turning round the bottom of the high pressure.

“Then we’ve got a front to pass, and it will be a completely different story after that. The forecast is for windy weather, so now we have to sleep, get some rest, and be ready for this part of the race.”

For crew lists … click here.


COURSE: Starting on March 18, Leg 7 takes the teams from Auckland, New Zealand to Itajaí, Brazil. Race organizers choose to estimate the tactical distance for each leg rather than list the actual distance, an unusual decision that’s revealed once the race starts and the tracker lists the actual distance to finish. The VOR says Leg 7 is 7600 nm whereas the truth is more like 6623 nm. The initial ETA for the finish is between April 4 and 6.

Race detailsTrackerScoreboardRace routeFacebookYouTube

Leg 7 – Position Report (19:16 UTC)
1. Vestas 11th Hour Racing (DEN/USA), Charlie Enright (USA), 6212.1 nm DTF
2. Team Brunel (NED), Bouwe Bekking (NED), 1.3 nm DTL
3. MAPFRE (ESP), Xabi Fernández (ESP), 4.2 nm DTL
4. Turn the Tide on Plastic (POR), Dee Caffari (GBR), 5.3 nm DTL
5. Team AkzoNobel (NED), Simeon Tienpont (NED), 8.5 nm DTL
6. Dongfeng Race Team (CHN), Charles Caudrelier (FRA), 8.7 nm DTL
7. Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag (HKG), David Witt (AUS), 21.5 nm DTL
DTF – Distance to Finish; DTL – Distance to Lead

Overall Results (after 6 of 11 legs)
1. MAPFRE (ESP), Xabi Fernández (ESP), 39 points
2. Dongfeng Race Team (CHN), Charles Caudrelier (FRA), 34
3. Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag (HKG), David Witt (AUS), 26
4. Team AkzoNobel (NED), Simeon Tienpont (NED), 23
5. Vestas 11th Hour Racing (DEN/USA), Charlie Enright (USA), 23
6. Team Brunel (NED), Bouwe Bekking (NED), 20
7. Turn the Tide on Plastic (POR), Dee Caffari (GBR), 12

2017-18 Edition: Entered Teams – Skippers
Team AkzoNobel (NED), Simeon Tienpont (NED)
Dongfeng Race Team (CHN), Charles Caudrelier (FRA)
MAPFRE (ESP), Xabi Fernández (ESP)
Vestas 11th Hour Racing (DEN/USA), Charlie Enright (USA)
Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag (HKG), David Witt (AUS)
Turn the Tide on Plastic (POR), Dee Caffari (GBR)
Team Brunel (NED), Bouwe Bekking (NED)

Background: Racing the one design Volvo Ocean 65, the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race begins 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. A maximum of eight teams will compete.

Source: Volvo Ocean Race

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