VOR: Is Brunel ready to cash in their chips?

Published on February 14th, 2015

(February 14, 2015; Day 7) – Looking at the Volvo Ocean Race position reports of the last 12 hours, Team Brunel has been the fastest boat, giving their position along with SCA to the north some comfort over the 4-boat southern pack. But not all is smooth sailing on Brunel as Stefan Coppers reports…
The conditions on Team Brunel are currently prosperous, but it is still all hands on deck. Spanish flu has been detected on board and Pablo Arrarte, who has been struggling for a few days with fever, is probably the source of the plague.

“For now, we can no longer kiss him,” jokes Jens Dolmer who also makes a serious side note. “This is threatening. We live in such a small space that something can spread easily on the group.

“Because of the bad food and little sleep everyone has a super-low resistance. This is normally not a problem because we leave with a sterile boat and at sea there are no viruses. But if someone brings it on, then we will all be at risk.”

Therefore we’ve considered throwing the jovial Spaniard overboard. But that might be a waste because he will be of added value in the near future. The Spaniard is now isolated and he eats with his “own spoon” from his “own bucket.”

However, the remedy for the Spanish flu seems already been found. Remarkably enough, it seems, every time we offer a package of Seranno ham from the day bag, Pablo begins to feel a lot better …
Overall the boats are all posting good speeds in the beam reaching conditions. Wind speed at the moment is 20 knots and all boats are doing just under 20’s.

Leg 4 (5,264 nm) Position Report (as of 21:39 UTC)
1. Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing, Ian Walker (GBR), 3809.2 nm Distance to Finish
2. MAPFRE, Xabi Fernandez (ESP), 23.8 nm Distance to Lead
3. Dongfeng Race Team, Charles Caudrelier (FRA), 24.3 nm DTL
4. Team Alvimedica, Charlie Enright (USA), 32.8 nm DTL
5. Team Brunel, Bouwe Bekking (NED), 60.0 nm DTL
6. Team SCA, Sam Davies (GBR), 109.3 nm DTL
7. Team Vestas Wind, Chris Nicholson (AUS), Did not start

Race websiteTrackingScoreboardVideos

Background: 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. The fourth leg, from Sanya, China to Auckland, New Zealand (5,264 nm), began Feb. 8 with an ETA of Mar. 1-5.

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