Volvo Ocean Race: Less than 500 miles to go
Leg 3: Abu Dhabi to Sanya (4,670 nautical miles)
Days at sea: 21
Boat speed: 9 knots
Distance to finish: 451 nautical miles.
Position in fleet: Still in the lead.‘I hope we can keep the position like this, keep it until the morning of the 27th and share the glory and happiness with everyone’ – Black
The world is watching. Can Dongfeng Race Team hold onto their 57 nautical miles lead to China for what will essentially be the ultimate home victory? Or will another team get desperate and make a bold decision that could cost Dongfeng their win?
Remember, with 500 miles to go anything can happen.
“I’ve never been so stressed in my whole life,” said Charles Caudrelier. That was over 36 hours ago. Since, the team have exited the complexities of the Straits and have been heading upwind in a relatively straight line towards the Vietnamese coast. “Beating upwind in the South China Sea means that there’s plenty of waves, plenty of swell, and plenty of ocean to sail in,” reports Volvo Ocean Race’s Jonathan Turner.
Although the upwind conditions mean the boat is literally bouncing up and down, it’s a pleasure for the team to be finally sailing without having to tack (change direction – every time having to shift 1000’s of kilos from one side of the boat to another!)
However unfortunately for the determined men of Dongfeng the peace of straight-line sailing is almost over: “We will be tacking every thirty minutes to one hour,” says Charles into the loudspeaker for all on deck to hear. To read more from Charles click here
The subtext is clear. Get some damn sleep cause you won’t be getting any soon.
by Amy Monkman