Protests could shuffle standings for Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15

Published on June 1st, 2015

There are a lot of rules when racing in the Volvo Ocean Race. Beyond the class rules and ISAF racing rules, the race has some rules that apply all the time, and then some rules that are specific to each leg and stopover venue.

Following the rules isn’t much different than the rest of the sport, but the delay in sorting through possible infractions can be significant. For the entire 2800 nm Leg 7 from Newport, USA to Lisbon, Portugal, three teams pondered whether they broke a rule on the first day of the race.

Upon their exit of Narragansett Bay on May 17, the fleet approached the eastern corridor of the Rhode Island Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS), an exclusion zone they were required to avoid. And now, 17 days later, the question will be decided if Team SCA, Dongfeng Race Team, and MAPFRE avoided it.

The ISAF-appointed independent international jury will be hearing four cases on Wednesday (June 3) after alleged breaches of sailing rules during Leg 7 of the Volvo Ocean Race.

Team SCA is to answer two cases: that they sailed against the traffic flow in a Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS), and, additionally, into a Rhode Island Sound exclusion zone.

Dongfeng Race Team and MAPFRE are also facing protests that they sailed against the traffic flow in a TSS.

The Race Committee has brought all the cases to the jury, If a penalty is awarded, the jury has discretion on what it will be. When MAPRE broke class rules during Leg 5, they were assessed a two point penalty to be added to their overall race score.

Full details of the cases are available on the Race Noticeboard.

The penultimate leg of the Volvo Ocean Race from Lisbon, Portugal to Lorient, France (647 nm) will start on June 7 with an ETA between June 9 and 12.

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.

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