Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 team Groupama 4 crossed the Lorient finish line this Friday lunchtime at 11h 31' 02 hours UTC. Franck Cammas and his men secured their second leg victory after their win in Auckland. This result also further boosts Groupama's position at the top of the overall standing.
Groupama Sailing Team during leg 8 - Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12
The scenario was on a par with the challenge because both Groupama and Telefonica suffered damage, there was a big storm to contend with on the final night and an extremely close four-way battle since the start in Lisbon last Sunday. Despite a technical issue with her mainsail on Wednesday evening (trapped car), which caused her to lose around ten miles, the French boat managed to catch up with the head of the fleet and then overtake the Americans and the New Zealanders through sheer speed.
The rudder damage suffered by the Spanish boat on Thursday evening proved damning for Telefonica, especially once her second rudder gave up the ghost midway through last night, following a gybe towards Lorient. Though this left the way clear for Groupama 4 to snatch the lead, she was still under pressure from Camper and Puma with the wind picking up to over 40 knots on the edge of this disturbed system. However, Franck Cammas and his men asserted themselves in a breeze, which was gradually easing as they approached Les Coureaux de Groix: at 11h 31' 02 UTC, Groupama 4 took victory in the eighth leg of the Volvo Ocean Race in front of a massive crowd gathered at the Pointe du Talut headland and around the port which harbours Lorient's old submarine base.
Groupama Sailing Team website