Leg 1 rankings full for The Ocean Race
Published on January 22nd, 2023
Cape Verde (January 22, 2023) – With the IMOCA podium complete for Leg 1 of The Ocean Race, Paul Meilhat’s Biotherm (fourth place) and Benjamin Dutreux’s GUYOT environnement – Team Europe (fifth place) completed the rankings.
“That was the first time we had all of the crew on board,” admitted said Meilhat. “I tried to take care of the people first and the boat second and we were successful – we are here with no big damage and all of us safe and happy and ready to race again.”
This left Ben Dutreux’s French-German team to finish the course in fifth place.
“Unfortunately we ended up having less wind with our option near the African coast and we needed to gybe out before the left shift arrived. We knew that we played some risk there but it hit us very hard,” shared Robert Stanjeck.
Biotherm finished January 21 at 23:47:40 UTC with GUYOT envrionnement – Team Eruope crossing the finish line on January 22 at 03:20:37 UTC.
After WindWhisper Racing took victory in VO65 fleet, Dutch skipper Jelmer van Beek led his team across the finishing line a few hours later to take second.
“We struggled a little bit in the first part of the race, we couldn’t keep up with the others, but when we came out of Gibraltar we were getting better and better, sail changes were better, we sailing sharper,” van Beek said. “We can always find a little bit more speed, get a little quicker, but we are happy with a second place finish. It’s really nice to be here in Cabo Verde.”
With the top two positions decided, it appeared Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team would claim third position. But as the team approached Mindelo, it announced it would retire from Leg One after having missed a mark of the race course back in the Gibraltar Strait.
Observant fans of the race tracker will recall the Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team boat traced a course to the south of, and into, an exclusion zone, which was also designated as a mark of the race course. By not correcting the error, the team would not have scored points for its efforts in stage one of the race, and elected to retire from the leg before finishing.
A statement from the team read: “… technical issues onboard resulted in us failing to leave the South Gibraltar Exclusion Zone to port as per the racing instructions. As we have missed a mark of the course the team has made the decision to retire from Leg One of The Ocean Race VO65 Sprint 2023.”
“We are very disappointed for this,” admitted skipper Antonio Fontes. “But the crew has done an amazing job getting us out of the Mediterranean in very hard conditions. Then we had the super fast sailing conditions in the Atlantic and it was a lot of fun racing from Gibraltar to here.”
The retirement opened the door to a podium finish for Austrian Ocean Racing powered by Team Genova, who were the last team enter The Ocean Race VO65 Sprint and only arrived in the start port of Alicante, Spain days before the beginning of the event.
The fourth VO65 to finish was the Lithuanian-flagged Ambersail 2, arriving early on January 22.
That leaves Viva Mexico as the only team still racing. Skipper Erik Brockmann and his team is still 600 miles away from Cabo Verde after stopping in the Spanish port of Almeria to make changes to their mainsail.
The VO65s competing for The Ocean Race VO65 Sprint Cup will pause their racing activities after this opening stage until the spring, when they resume racing in Aarhus, Denmark.
There is no In-port race in Cabo Verde. As a short stopover, IMOCA teams are highly restricted in how they can operate, with all work on board to be completed by the sailing team. Racing resumes January 25 with the Cabo Verde start of Leg Two to Cape Town, South Africa.
Leg One Rankings at 12:00 UTC
1. Team Holcim-PRB, winner leg one, finished – 5d 11h 01m 59s
2. 11th Hour Racing Team, finished – 5d 13h 50m 45s
3. Team Malizia, finished – 5d 16h 35m 21s
4. Biotherm, finished – 6d 8h 47m
5. GUYOT environnement – Team Europe, finished – 6d 12h 20m 37s
1. WindWhisper Racing, finished, 5d 16h 35m 21s
2. Team JAJO, finished, 6d 4h 52m 52s
3. Austrian Ocean Racing – Team Genova, finished, 6d 19h 13m 54s
4. Ambersail 2, finished, 6d 21h 49m 04s
5. Viva Mexico, 690.7 miles to leader
6. Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team – Retired from leg
IMOCA: Boat, Design, Skipper, Launch date
• Guyot Environnement – Team Europe (VPLP Verdier); Benjamin Dutreux (FRA)/Robert Stanjek (GER); September 1, 2015
• 11th Hour Racing Team (Guillaume Verdier); Charlie Enright (USA); August 24, 2021
• Holcim-PRB (Guillaume Verdier); Kevin Escoffier (FRA); May 8, 2022
• Team Malizia (VPLP); Boris Herrmann (GER); July 19, 2022
• Biotherm (Guillaume Verdier); Paul Meilhat (FRA); August 31 2022
The Ocean Race 2022-23 Race Schedule:
Alicante, Spain – Leg 1 start: January 15, 2023
Cabo Verde – ETA: January 22; Leg 2 start: January 25
Cape Town, South Africa – ETA: February 9; Leg 3 start: February 26 or 27 (TBC)
Itajaí, Brazil – ETA: April 1; Leg 4 start: April 23
Newport, RI, USA – ETA: May 10; Leg 5 start: May 21
Aarhus, Denmark – ETA: May 30; Leg 6 start: June 8
Kiel, Germany (Fly-By) – June 9
The Hague, The Netherlands – ETA: June 11; Leg 7 start: June 15
Genova, Italy – The Grand Finale – ETA: June 25, 2023; Final In-Port Race: July 1, 2023
The Ocean Race (formerly Volvo Ocean Race and Whitbread Round the World Race) was initially to be raced in two classes of boats: the high-performance, foiling, IMOCA 60 class and the one-design VO65 class which has been used for the last two editions of the race.
However, only the IMOCAs will be racing round the world while the VO65s will race in The Ocean Race VO65 Sprint which competes in Legs 1, 6, and 7 of The Ocean Race course.
Additionally, The Ocean Race also features the In-Port Series with races at seven of the course’s stopover cities around the world which allow local fans to get up close and personal to the teams as they battle it out around a short inshore course.
Although in-port races do not count towards a team’s overall points score, they do play an important part in the overall rankings as the In-Port Race Series standings are used to break any points ties that occur during the race around the world.
The 14th edition of The Ocean Race was originally planned for 2021-22 but was postponed one year due to the pandemic, with the first leg starting on January 15, 2023.
Source: The Ocean Race