(June 12, 2018; Day 3) – Getting from Point A to Point B is rarely a straight line, a reality the Volvo Ocean Race teams faced earlier today as they attempted to cross a windless ridge of high-pressure that could hold the key to overall victory.
With the finish in Gothenberg to the east, the seven teams spent much of the day heading west on port gybe as they battled to get across the ridge 100 miles off the Irish coast. But with the fleet gybing to starboard, heading northeast toward the top of Scotland, the top four are nearly bows even with just five miles of separation.
MAPFRE has taken over the top spot while early leg leaders Dongfeng Race Team have dropped to fourth, an important shift given Dongfeng’s narrow one point lead in the overall standings. Boat speeds have returned too as stronger south westerlies now will lead to a full-on, sleepless sprint to the North Sea.
“I know it will be a brutal fight all the way to Gothenburg so here we are, trying to eat as much as possible,” notes skipper Xabi Fernández onboard MAPFRE. “We have not had barely any rest yet so I hope we can have some good sleeps before we get to the top of Scotland.”
The forecast is for testing conditions – 40 knots of breeze and poor visibility around Scotland, a breezy upwind passage across the North Sea then even stronger winds and bigger seas off the coast of Norway.
Leg 10 – Position Report (19:40 UTC)
1. MAPFRE (ESP), Xabi Fernández (ESP), 942.6 nm DTF
2. Team AkzoNobel (NED), Simeon Tienpont (NED), 1.5 nm DTL
3. Team Brunel (NED), Bouwe Bekking (NED), 1.6 nm DTL
4. Vestas 11th Hour Racing (DEN/USA), Charlie Enright (USA), 1.8 nm DTL
5. Dongfeng Race Team (CHN), Charles Caudrelier (FRA), 2.2 nm DTL
6. Turn the Tide on Plastic (POR), Dee Caffari (GBR), 9.4 nm DTL
7. Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag (HKG), David Witt (AUS), 12.8 nm DTL
DTF – Distance to Finish; DTL – Distance to Lead
Starting June 10, Leg 10 is a 1,300-nautical mile sprint from Cardiff, Wales that takes the teams around the west coast of Ireland up to the northern tip of Scotland before heading east-southeast to Gothenburg, the home of Volvo. The fleet is expected to finish by June 14 or 15.
2017-18 Edition: Entered Teams – Skippers
• Team AkzoNobel (NED), Simeon Tienpont (NED)
• Dongfeng Race Team (CHN), Charles Caudrelier (FRA)
• MAPFRE (ESP), Xabi Fernández (ESP)
• Vestas 11th Hour Racing (DEN/USA), Charlie Enright (USA)
• Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag (HKG), David Witt (AUS)
• Turn the Tide on Plastic (POR), Dee Caffari (GBR)
• Team Brunel (NED), Bouwe Bekking (NED)
Background: Racing the one design Volvo Ocean 65, the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race begins in Alicante, Spain on October 22 2017 with the final finish in The Hague, Netherlands on June 30 2018. In total, the 11-leg race will visit 12 cities in six continents: Alicante, Lisbon, Cape Town, Melbourne, Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Auckland, Itajaí, Newport, Cardiff, Gothenburg, and The Hague. A maximum of eight teams will compete.
Source: Volvo Ocean Race