VOR: Upwind to Sumatra

Published on January 17th, 2015

(January 17, 2015; Day 15) – Now in the monsoon breeze after drifting for almost three days in the Bay of Bengal, the Volvo Ocean Race fleet is making excellent progress east. They are sailing in a 45º NE wind of about 15 knots. The fleet is even seeing the odd wave over the foredeck. Beating hard on the wind in flat water has allowed the fleet to reach some good speeds.

Truth is, the fleet will take any direction of wind, as long as it comes with some strength. Unfortunately it’s blowing 30º too far right. They knew that it would clock right, so they’ve pushed hard into the header.

The next move for Dongfeng is to tack to clear of the peninsula of Pulau Breueh and the Island of Palau We in Sumatra.

All the fleet will need to tack and spend about 60nm on starboard. They have been predominately on port tack since they left the Gulf of Oman some 10 days ago.

This will take them around Palau We and Benda Aceh and into the Malacca Strait. They will then turn right and have to make the call on what side of the strait to choose. If they choose the Sumatra side, then they will have to cross at some stage because the entrance to the traffic separation scheme is to the north, on the Malaysian side.

Leg 3 (4,642 nm) Position Report (as of 21:41 UTC)
1. Dongfeng Race Team, Charles Caudrelier (FRA), 1777.1 nm Distance to Finish
2. MAPFRE, Iker Martinez (ESP), 63.2 nm Distance to Lead
3. Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing, Ian Walker (GBR), 67.3 nm DTL
4. Team Brunel, Bouwe Bekking (NED), 69.8 nm DTL
5. Team Alvimedica, Charlie Enright (USA), 78.9 nm DTL
6. Team SCA, Sam Davies (GBR), 98.3 DTL
7. Team Vestas Wind, Chris Nicholson (AUS), Did not start

Race websiteTrackingScoreboardVideos

Background: The fleet is now on Leg 3 from Abu Dhabi, UAE to Sanya, China (4,642 nm), which started Jan. 3 with an ETA on or after Jan. 19. The 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race began in Alicante, Spain on Oct. 11 with the final finish on June 27 in Gothenburg, Sweden. Racing the new one design Volvo Ocean 65, seven teams will be scoring points in 9 offshore legs to determine the overall Volvo Ocean Race winner. Additionally, the teams will compete in 10 In-Port races at each stopover for a separate competition – the Volvo Ocean Race In-Port Series.

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