Sunday, April 8, 2012

CAMPER Back In The Race - Volvo Ocean Race Update

CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand (Chris Nicholson/AUS) has joined Groupama sailing team (Franck Cammas/FRA) back on the racetrack, but in different oceans, after both boats made pit stops to effect repairs. While CAMPER has left the Chilean port of Puerto Montt and is headed for the Southern Ocean and the notorious Cape Horn, Groupama, under jury rig after dismasting on April 4, is in the Atlantic having left Punta del Este on Saturday, and are sailing carefully towards the finish line in Itajaí, Brazil.
Photo: Paul Todd/Volvo Ocean Race
At 0441 GMT today, CAMPER reached the point where they suspended racing on April 2, and are back in racing trim. Their shore crew worked round the clock to make substantial repairs in order for the crew to complete the leg safely by way of Cape Horn. As the water and air temperatures become progressively colder for Chris Nicholson and his men, the seven-strong team on Groupama are experiencing the complete opposite.

It took CAMPER 26 hours to motor south from Puerto Montt to the waypoint at 43 52 South, 74 52 West, where they began racing. The crew reported light wind, but swells that are causing the boat to bang down hard after each wave. The crew however feel very confident in their boat and the repairs made in Chile and are ready to take on the challenge ahead. They have 2348 nautical miles to race to the finish and are averaging 10.4 knots.

Meanwhile, Groupama has ideal conditions for racing under a jury rig and is making 12.3 knots reaching towards the finish in around 20 knots of wind. Yesterday, the team managed to surf the boat at 19 knots, although they are not altering the balance of the boat by stacking sails or canting the keel. They are sailing a shorthanded watch system with only two people on deck at any time in three watches. At 1000 GMT today, Groupama had 353 nm to go to the finish.

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing was the second boat to dock in Puerto Montt after suffering serious structural damage on March 29. Despite at sea heroics to try to repair damage to the mid-section on the port side of Azzam’s hull, skipper Ian Walker made the difficult decision to retire from Leg 5 and ship the boat from Chile to Itajaí. Although Walker and his team have readied the boat for shipping yesterday, Saturday, the ship that was due to carry Azzam to the Leg 5 finish port has been delayed due to bad weather.

“Every day that we have to wait, puts more and more pressure on us to get the repair work carried out in Itajaí before the start of the next leg,” said a frustrated Ian Walker.

“We cannot start the work here in Chile, so all we can do is work on any other servicing and work list jobs to save time in Brazil. To move this along, we are also sending two of our shore team to travel on the ship.”
Leg 5
08/04/2012 10:05:54 UTC
1PUMAFIN019d 18h 09m 50s
2TELEFIN019d 18h 22m 28s
-ADORDid Not Finish
-SNYADid Not Finish
Volvo Ocean Race Media

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