The Ocean Race aims at Cape Town
Published on February 9th, 2023
(February 9, 2023; Day 16) – Team Malizia has proven fast and smart on Leg 2, working from last to first, but gave up their lead this afternoon as the five IMOCAs on port gybe aim at the finish in Cape Town.
With light airs ahead, the German-flagged team did a couple gybes to reposition themselves to the south, giving back the lead to 11th Hour Racing.
There is now less than 800 nautical miles to run but a major obstacle remains, and with Team Malizia averaging five knots faster over the past four hours, this could be a long play to win the leg.
Helping them is how the wind is forecast to build in from the west, which will also benefit the trailing boats GUYOT environnement-Team Europe and Biotherm as they carry the breeze up to the leaders.
There is a very real possibility of all five teams finding themselves together on final approach to Cape Town, despite being separated by over 360 nautical miles on the rankings at 1800 UTC today.
In fact, the leaders are already starting to slow, the trailing boats making better speeds and closing the gap.
“(We are shooting) up towards Cape Town, which is a north easterly trajectory and where we will encounter a ridge and the whole fleet will compress and we’ll have to be on our toes,” said Charlie Enright, skipper of 11th Hour Racing Team. “it will be first in, first out. We could bob around for a while and anyone could pass anybody. Then we will end this Leg with a grueling 100 mile coastal race… We’ve got to stay fresh to the end.”
That won’t be easy. This has been a grueling leg already and with the ETA slipping by two or three days, the teams are low on food. They’ll have been rationing supplies for some days already, adding to the physical and mental stress of the final days of leg 2.
Leg Two Rankings at 1800 UTC
1. 11th Hour Racing Team, distance to finish, 797.9 nm
2. Team Holcim-PRB, distance to lead, 26.1 nm
3. Team Malizia, distance to lead, 51.6 nm
4. Biotherm, distance to lead, 124.2 nm
5. GUYOT environnement – Team Europe, distance to lead, 355.4 nm
Initially, race management predicted a 14-15-day passage time for Leg 2, with the leading boats expected to arrive in Cape Town on or around February 8 or 9. Now the ETA is February 12.
Race details – Route – Tracker – Teams – Content from the boats – YouTube
IMOCA LEG 2 CREW LIST
11TH HOUR RACING TEAM (USA)
Charlie ENRIGHT (USA) Skipper
Simon FISHER (GBR)
Jack BOUTTELL (AUS/ GBR)
Justine METTRAUX (SUI)
Amory ROSS (USA) – OBR
Paul MEILHAT (FRA) – Skipper
Anthony MARCHAND (FRA)
Amélie GRASSI (FRA)
Damien SEGUIN (FRA)
Annne BEUGÉ (FRA)
TEAM HOLCIM-PRB (SUI)
Kevin ESCOFFIER (FRA) – Skipper
Sam GOODCHILD (GBR)
Tom LAPERCHE (FRA)
Susann BEUCKE (GER)
Georgia SCHOFIELD (NZL) – OBR
GUYOT ENVIRONNEMENT-TEAM EUROPE (FRA/ GER)
Robert STANJEK (GER) – skipper
Sébastien SIMON (FRA)
Anne-Claire LE BERRE (FRA)
Phillip KASÜSKE (GER)
Charles DRAPEAU (FRA) – OBR
TEAM MALIZIA (GER)
Will HARRIS (GBR) – skipper
Yann ELIES (FRA)
Rosalin KUIPER (NED)
Nicolas LUNVEN (FRA)
Antoine AURIOL (FRA) – OBR
Leg One Results
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, finished – 8d 13h 50m 25s
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