Volvo Ocean Race - Newsletter - Leg 4 Finish Auckland 14 March 2012


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Volvo Ocean Race - Newsletter - Leg 4 Finish Auckland 14 March 2012

Groupama - a few minutes from the Leg 4 finish Volvo Ocean Race  Richard Gladwell
Welcome to Sail-World.com's Volvo Ocean Race Newsletter for 14 March 2012

The 2011-12 Volvo Ocean Race have reached Auckland, the halfway point of the Round the World classic now in its 11th edition.

Returning to Auckland for the first time in a decade, the fleet has once again made contact with one of the cornerstones of the traditional four stop route, which in its heyday attracted a peak fleet of 29 entries. . But that was in the days when adventure dictated the course, rather than commercial considerations.

It is said that this fleet is the most competitive yet. Small but perfectly formed. Yet there is a significant gap between each of the boats on the leaderboard, with four of the ocean legs completed.

While the points table is what it is; what it isn't, is an accurate guide to the margins between the boats. Much has been made of Camper's perceived shortcomings tight reaching; Groupama's straying navigation on Leg 1 and to a lesser extent on Leg 2A; Telefonica's invincibility and so on.

Groupama - Volvo Ocean Race Village, Auckland, Day 3  Richard Gladwell

The reality is that Telefonica picked up points at vital points at a time when she had to beat Camper. By a margin of 117 seconds at the end of the 4000nm leg from Cape Town to the Maldives; and 93 seconds into Auckland at the end of a 5300nm leg.

That's three and a half minutes in almost 35 days of sailing and over 9,000nm to put nine points in her bag.

Puma's Brad Jackson (helm) and skipper Ken Read - Volvo Ocean Race, Leg 4 Finish - Puma  Richard Gladwell

Reverse those out (ie assume that Camper were able to beat/head off Telefonica on both occasions) and the points table still has Telefonica in the lead with 112 points, Camper has 107 points and Groupama third, unchanged on 103 points.

That is quite a different picture of the boats' capabilities relative to each other - much, much closer than the current leaderboard indicates. As for the next two - being Puma and Abu Dhabi - both have shown flashes of form.

Team Sanya's sails get a work over at the Doyle loft in Auckland  Richard Gladwell

But dismastings on Leg 1 have counted heavily against them - both in terms of the mental effort required to get a campaign back on its feet, together with the fact that there is little time in the stopovers to take a breath. Add to that the 'once bitten, twice shy' factor, following any dismasting - and it is too hasty to make any judgements as to performance, on the basis of what has passed to date.

Don't forget that Abu Dhabi holds the Rolex Fastnet monohull speed record - set largely on the basis of a fast downwind ride from the Rock - and you may have another pointer to performance to come in the Southern Ocean.

Tight finish for Camper 93 seconds behind Telefonica - Volvo Ocean Race, Leg 4   Richard Gladwell

But reality says there are some substantial gaps on the leaderboard, and closing those with a tightly matched fleet will not be easy. Consistent performance is what is required.

Auckland has taken the Volvo Ocean Race to its heart. If you want to get taste of what sailing is like in Heaven - have a look around the Viaduct on a fine, blue sky day. The marine vista seems infinite with all manner of water activities. What is different is that the crowds aren't there as spectators - they are immersed in the action - being participants rather than detached, and are as fascinating to watch as the programmed entertainment.

Future round the world racers get a look at the Volvo Ocean Race, Leg 4 Finish  Richard Gladwell

The next few days will see the focus going back on the sailing, with three days of racing before the Race starts on Sunday.

Stay tuned..

Good sailing!

Richard Gladwell
Editor@Large

If you wish to see Sail-World's complete Volvo OR coverage, go to www.sail-world.com - and click on the Volvo Ocean Race button in the top header bar, you'll see all stories for all regions from this exciting race - all updated as the race unfolds.

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Volvo Inmarsat Report: Leg 4 'Too long and hard was the consensus'
Mark Covell,
Groupama romped home on Saturday night with a healthy lead over the chasing pack. The French are the first to beat the Spanish to the top slot. It's a difficult call to start rating the legs as each one brings its own challenges. Seeing the drawn faces of the crews as they pulled into the dock told a story of its own. And when I asked them directly how the leg was, I got a similar tale from all... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Team Sanya's sails get serviced at Doyles
Richard Gladwell,
Team Sanya has checked her Volvo Ocean race inventory into Doyle Sails loft in Auckland's Avondale for a full service ahead of the start of the fifth Leg on Sunday, and In Port racing starting tomorrow, Thursday. Doyle's Chris McMaster says that Team Sanya will be getting some new sails including a fractional Code Zero for the next leg. 'We only started discussing the sail four days ago with Mi... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Images from the Race Village
Richard Gladwell,
The Volvo Ocean Race Village is open in Auckland with a range of activities in and around the magnificent Viaduct Harbour. Then there are the shore crews working frantically to get the six Volvo Ocean Race competitors into trim for the Southern Ocean leg of the 39,000 ocean classic... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: More images from the Race Village
Richard Gladwell,
The Volvo Ocean Race Village is open in Auckland with a range of activities in and around the magnificent Viaduct Harbour. Then there are the shore crews working frantically to get the six Volvo Ocean Race competitors into trim for the Southern Ocean leg of the 39,000 ocean classic. Here's a second gallery of images... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race teams race against time to finish repairs
Volvo Ocean Race,
Volvo Ocean Race Leg 4 winners Groupama are on track to finish repairs to their damaged bow by Tuesday evening despite the Auckland rain that hampered the six shore teams' progress. 'Basically we're still on schedule to finish at the end of the day tomorrow,' said Groupama shore team manager Ben Wright.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: My daddy is home.
Paul Gilbert,
After a tough and competitive leg into Auckland It was a pleasure to see these hard out race boys reunited with family . All the fatigue and discomfort the race pressure was dissolved on re uniting with the up and coming family crew.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race Leg 4 Inmarsat MCM Award top three
Volvo Ocean Race,
Volvo Ocean Race fourth leg, from Sanya to Auckland, was one of the most closely fought and dramatic of legs in race's 39-year-history and gave judges for the Inmarsat MCM Award their biggest challenge of the 2011-12 edition. A team of expert judges from Inmarsat and the event's communications team had the toughest of tasks in deciding the 1-2-3 podium finishers for leg four.... [more]
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Images of the Waitemata: Volvo Ocean Race Leg 4 finish - Puma
Richard Gladwell,
Puma Ocean Racing, looked gone for all money a few days after the start of Leg 4 slipping back to be almost 300nm astern of the race leader at one point. However she placed her trust in the weather routing software and was quickly back in contact with the pack and then edged up into second place - which she held all the way to the finish line.... [more]
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Images of the Waitemata: Volvo Ocean Race Leg 4 finish - Telefonica
Richard Gladwell,
The finish of Leg 4 in Auckland was the first time in this edition of the Volvo Ocean Race in which Telefonica (Iker Martinez) has not been first home. She finished third into Auckland, just beating fourth placed Camper by 90 seconds - the second narrow victory she has had over the Spanish entry sailed by Emirates Team NZ.... [more]
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Images of the Waitemata: Volvo Ocean Race Leg 4 finish - Camper
Richard Gladwell,
Camper came close to taking a last second victory on the fourth leg, after charging up the Rangitoto Channel and then continuing at full pace once inside the Waitemata Harbour and heading for the finish off the Viaduct Harbour. The margins were more of what is expected on a Wednesday night race than one that has taken almost 20 days and 5,000 nautical miles.... [more]
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Images of the Waitemata: Volvo Ocean Race Leg 4 finish - Abu Dhabi
Richard Gladwell,
Abu Dhabi finished fifth into Auckland. The Ian Walker skippered entry also caught time on the leading four boats in the final stages of Leg 4, finishing just after Camper and Telefonica.... [more]
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Images of the Waitemata: Volvo Ocean race, Leg 4 finish - Team Sanya
Richard Gladwell,
Team Sanya was the sixth boat home, finishing her second of four legs with the remainder of the six strong Volvo fleet. She performed well in the latter stages of Leg 4 closing up on the other competitors. Skippered by former NZ Sailor of the Year, Mike Sanderson, Team Sanya got a rousing welcome home from many on the water supporters... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Puma's fight for second pays off
Lisa Ramsperger,
Puma crossed the line at 11:55.43 local/22:55.43 UTC in Auckland, New Zealand, completing the Volvo Ocean Race leg from Sanya, China, in 20 days, 3 hours, 57 minutes and 50. 'We had to fight for this second-place finish, and we're very pleased,' said skipper Ken Read. 'It was a combination of boat speed, the ability of the boat to handle the conditions, and of course the guys on board.'... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Images from Leg 4 finish and on the dock
Richard and Ben Gladwell,
Sail-World was on the water and ashore at the Viaduct Harbour for the arrival of Groupama (Franck Cammas), the first to finish Leg 4 of the Volvo Ocean Race, in Auckland and marking the return of the round the work classic to the City of Sails.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Groupama takes Leg 4 despite some serious drama
Volvo Ocean Race and Sail-World,
Groupama sailing team claimed a dramatic Leg 4 victory on Saturday after the discovery of a hole in their bow threatened to sink their lead within 100 miles of the Auckland finish. The French team rallied in eight metre seas and 30 knot headwinds to isolate the leak and drain 1.5 tonnes of water before crossing the finish line at 10:33:47 UTC/23:33:47 local, more than 80 nautical miles ahead of... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Puma's Mar Mostro dash to the finish
Ken Read,
Volvo Ocean Race, Day 20 of the second stage of Leg 4. Ken Read, Skipper of Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg reports on the crew's progress: Just rounded North Cape. After about a million miles and I think about three weeks of sailing we saw land for the first time. Tony Mutter gave such an unequivocal 'Land Ho' that he is hoarse and his throat hurts.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Groupama 4 cross Leg 4 finish
Franck Cammas,
Volvo Ocean Race team Groupama 4 have crossed the finish line this Saturday at 1033 UTC, securing victory in the fourth leg of racing from Sanya to Auckland. A very important result for Franck Cammas and his men after sailing over 6,500 miles between in some tough weather conditions and one that came about thanks to a sound strategic option in the North Pacific.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Puma Ocean Racing fight for second
Amory Ross,
Volvo Ocean Race team Puma Ocean Racing is ready to get to Auckland as Amory Ross, MCM, reports: This has all the makings of a lasting memory, or potentially – a 'last'-ing one. While Groupama's lead looks insurmountable (and rightfully so, they have sailed a flawless leg), we're staring down the barrel of a tight three-way race for second place, or a podium-less fourth, with one day to go.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Auckland finish - Rolling Updates
Richard Gladwell,
Sail-World will be covering the finish of Leg 4 of the Volvo Ocean Race from our Takapuna office, the Media Centre at the Viaduct Harbour and on the water. We expect to have two correspondents covering the finish - and will be covering the finish of all boats, at this point. This story will have the rolling updates of the situation as we know it, and will continue to the finish of the leg.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race crew - Puma's Mar Mostro tough it out
Amory Ross,
Volvo Ocean Race crew onboard Puma's Mar Mostro tough it out as Amory Ross, MCM, reports: I don't know how I managed to fall asleep last night with all of the crashing – each wave sent me farther down the bunk, bare feet invading Tom's nav station – but at some point I guess I did.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race team Groupama head for Leg 4 finish
Franck Cammas,
Volvo Ocean Race team Groupama 4 was the first to pass Cape Reinga, which marks the northern tip of New Zealand, early this Friday afternoon. Franck Cammas and his men have just 180 miles to go to make the finish in Auckland. Over a hundred miles behind the French boat, there is a fierce battle for a place on the podium!... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race team Sanya gun for Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing
Volvo Ocean Race,
Volvo Ocean Race team Sanya, currently at the back of the fleet, had the crosshairs fixed firmly on fifth-placed Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing on Friday after halving the distance to their rivals in 24 hours. Mike Sanderson's crew were within 17 miles of Ian Walker's team on Azzam at 0100 UTC and looking for any opportunity to pounce as they entered the last 400 miles of leg four.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Iron rations in the carbon fibre prison
Hamish Hooper,
After suffering a delayed start, and then doing the Tour de Taiwan as the fleet found the east was best in opening stanzas of Leg 4 of the Volvo Ocean Race, food is now running short as the Leg takes three or four days longer than expected. Hamish Hooper describes life aboard Camper, as they punch into heavy seas and strong winds in the final stages of the leg to Auckland.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race team Groupama 4 prepare for long day ahead
Franck Cammas,
Volvo Ocean Race team Groupama 4 lead has dropped from a 149.50 mile lead to 95.5 miles. Before they can step onto the dock in Auckland, Franck Cammas and his men still have a day and a half at sea, beating into a strong South-East to easterly wind, which will fade as they make their way along the coast of New Zealand.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race team Puma Ocean Racing drop into third
Amory Ross,
Volvo Ocean Race team Puma Ocean Racing have had a tough night. Amory Ross, MCM, reports on the crew's progress: Now we're getting to the tough part of this race. I'm not talking about 35 knot headwinds, six-meter swells, or soaking wet living conditions. I'm not talking about sleepless days, exhaustive malnutrition, sunburn or frostbite. I'm talking about getting close to a finish line... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race team Groupama 4 hold onto lead
Franck Cammas,
Volvo Ocean Race team Groupama hold a 149.5 mile lead at the 1300 UTC report. The depression, which has settled into position across the direct route to Auckland, is forcing the fleet to go around the resulting zone of calms. Groupama has managed to hold onto her lead ahead of the Americans and Spanish, but the last 500 miles are likely to be punctuated by a steady South-East to easterly headwind... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Big ecomomic benefit and visitors confirmed for NZ
Richard Gladwell,
The benefits of the Volvo Ocean Race stopover to Auckland were spelled out by Rachael Dacy of Auckland Tourism and Economic Events. 'This event does means a lot to Auckland, injecting $30.3million into the Auckland economy.'... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Big gains for Puma Ocean Racing
Ken Read,
Volvo Ocean Race, Day 17 of the second stage of Leg 4. Ken Read, Skipper of Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg reports on the crew's progress: The cruelty in this game has got to be the three-hour 'scheds.' The three-hour progress reports we get from Volvo headquarters with each competitor's vital statistics and their exact position.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Groupama 4 increase lead
Franck Cammas,
Volvo Ocean Race - Though Groupama 4 has been able to extend her lead over the past 24 hours, part of the weather situation between New Caledonia and New Zealand is coloured by doubt. Indeed the light airs offshore of Auckland could cause the fleet to bunch up again. The ETA is reckoned to be between noon on Friday and Saturday night UTC.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Puma's Mar Mostro prepared
Amory Ross,
Volvo Ocean Race - Amory Ross, MCM for Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg, reports on the crew's progress: We have a strap that we tie from one end of the galley entrance to the other. It's a preventer so that when upwind sailing is at it's worst and you're tucked inside cooking on the high side, you don't risk losing your grip on the boat and falling all the way to leeward.... [more]
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2011-12 Volvo Ocean Race
01/01/10
2011-12 Volvo Ocean Race...
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