Malizia takes lead in The Ocean Race
Published on March 24th, 2023
(March 24, 2023; Day 27) – The four IMOCA teams have the end of the hardest part of the longest leg in the history of The Ocean Race in sight.
For an epic drone ‘movie’ from Team Malizia, click here.
This afternoon UTC, the most iconic of landmarks to offshore sailors – Cape Horn – lies just over 1000 miles to the east.
But those miles won’t come easily. Gale force winds and 6-8 metre seas are on the menu for the weekend, before the sailors can expect to pass Cape Horn on Monday morning (March 27).
Team Malizia, which is acknowledged to have an edge in these conditions, is 10 miles ahead of Team Holcim PRB with both boats to the north of Biotherm and 11th Hour Racing Team, some 50 miles behind to the southwest.
“We’re attacking the last long downwind leg towards Cape Horn, with the last low pressure system that will take us as far as the Horn,” said Team Holcim-PRB skipper Kevin Escoffier.
Check out the conditions on Team Holcim – PRB: click here
“We’re going to gradually climb into conditions that are more like the South, with about 30-35 knots of wind and seas that will reach seven meters. Solid conditions, as you would expect from coming this far. The important thing now is to take care of the boat, take care of the crew and stay in touch with the competitors. Fast, but not furious.”
In fact this is in line with another memorable reminder the crew of 11th Hour Racing Team has come up with: “Nothing silly before Chile.”
Cool drone footage from 11th Hour Racing Team: click here
It seems all are in agreement that after a month at sea, the main goal must be getting out of the southern latitudes safely and with boats in good shape for the final push north to the finish in Itajaí, Brazil.
For life in the south on board Biotherm, click here.
The weather forecast is for conditions to escalate tomorrow with trailing winds near 35 knots, gusting into the mid-40s, and a sea state over 6 metres, before moderating slightly on Sunday and again into more a manageable state for the actual passage of Cape Horn.
Leg Three Rankings at 20:45 UTC
1. Team Malizia, distance to finish, 2890.3 nm
2. Team Holcim-PRB, distance to lead, 14.8 nm
3. Biotherm, distance to lead, 69.3 nm
4. 11th Hour Racing Team, distance to lead, 86.3 nm
GUYOT environnement – withdrawn from Leg 3
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 (1900 nm) start: January 15, 2023
Cabo Verde – ETA: January 22; Leg 2 (4600 nm) start: January 25
Cape Town, South Africa – ETA: February 9; Leg 3 (12750 nm) start: February 26
Itajaí, Brazil – ETA: April 1; Leg 4 (5500 nm) start: April 23
Newport, RI, USA – ETA: May 10; Leg 5 (3500 nm) start: May 21
Aarhus, Denmark – ETA: May 30; Leg 6 (800 nm) start: June 8
Kiel, Germany (Fly-By) – June 9
The Hague, The Netherlands – ETA: June 11; Leg 7 (2200 nm) 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