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Offshore Racing

 
Offshore Racing – Monday, January 26, 2015
Monday, January 26, 2015   
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Leg 3 of the VOR is in its last 24 hours' phase, and 'Dongfeng' with Charles Caudrelier FRA with 170 miles to go increased her advantage on 57 miles again. The Chinese team will most probably arrive first at its home base Sanya and take the overall lead. The fight for the ranks 2 to 5 remains open with 'Abu Dhabi' (Ian Walker GBR) on pole position 9 miles ahead of 'Alvimedica' (Charlie Enright USA), and another 10 miles back 'Mapfre' (Javi Fernandez ESP). The South Chinese sea is very calm for the moment, but an increasing breeze around 10 kn has been announce for the day.
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Monday, January 26, 2015   
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Guillermo Altadill ESP/José Munoz CHI have rounded the most southern point of Africa as second during the past night. Vanishing winds on the Indian Ocean and the safety line on the 45th Parallel not allowing any strategic escape have slowed down Bernard Stamm SUI/Jean Le Cam FRA. Their advance on Altadill/Munoz was reduced to 137 miles this morning and is shrinking even more.
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Offshore Racing – Sunday, January 25, 2015
Sunday, January 25, 2015   
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The wind has vanished in the past 24 hours with 350 miles to go to Sanya, and the fleet has closed up again. 'Abu Dhabi' with Ian Walker is now only 17 miles behind the leading 'Dongfeng' (Charles Caudrelier FRA) and the race for the first place at the Chinese port-of-call is again fully open. Even 'Brunel' (Bouwe Bekking NED) sailing on rank 5 30 miles behind has chances to join the battle for victory in the light and varying winds near the shore. Only 'SCA' with Samantha Davies GBR 95 miles back will hardly make any ranks good.
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Sunday, January 25, 2015   
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The leading Bernard Stamm SUI/Jean Le Cam FRA vill round Cape of Good Hope this morning UTC, and their strategy in the circumvention of the St-Helena anticyclone in the South Atlantic proved to be favorable. The second ranked 'Neutrogena' with Guillermo Altadill ESP/José Munoz CHI is 119 miles behind, while the rest of the fleet is over 24 hours away. A last quick check of boat and equipment and then begins the long and awesome high-speed race in the Roaring Forties to Cape Horn.
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Offshore Racing – Saturday, January 24, 2015
Saturday, January 24, 2015   
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Bernard Stamm SUI/Jean Le Cam FRA and 70 miles behind Guillermo Altadill ESP/José Munoz CHI are chasing at speeds of up to 20 kn direction Indian Ocean, and they expect to pass the Cape of Good Hopes during the coming night. The seven teams still in the race met science yesterday as the pairs of skippers took the first opportunity to deploy their data monitoring Argo beacon which was given to them in Bareclona prior to the start. These beacons which will provide data from these remote oceanic locations for seven years, a program allowing scientists to look below the surface, providing a profile of the temperature and salinity of the ocean using a global array of over 3,500 profiling floats that are moving up and down in the water column from the surface to a depth of 2,000m. This project enables new revelations about ocean dynamics that are helping society understand and forecast global climate.
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Saturday, January 24, 2015   
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The fleet is now approaching the Vietnamese coast in a long starboard leg in a 20 kn breeze and a rough sea. The leading 'Dongfeng' (Charles Caudrelier FRA) had 500 miles to go to Sanya this morning UTC. The race for victory is not over yet as the 59 miles' advantage can be lost rapidly in case of tactical errors or gear failure. The chaser quartet, lead by 'Abu Dhabi' (Ian Walker GBR) is sailing within a 15 miles area
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Offshore Racing – Friday, January 23, 2015
Friday, January 23, 2015   (Image © Sam Greenfield)
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The Volvo Ocean Race fleet is now sailing upwind in refreshening winds on the home stretch across the South Chinese Sea direction Sanya CHN. 750 miles are left for the leader and the expected time of arrival at the finish is next Monday. 'Dongfeng' with Charles Caudrelier FRA has lost some of her advantage after a minor equipment failure, but is still 50 miles ahead of the closely sailing pursuer quartet. 'SCA' (Samantha Davies GBR) as last of the fleet is now 148 miles back.
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Friday, January 23, 2015   
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Although sailing in two different wind systems, both 'Cheminées Poujoulat' with Bernard Stamm SUI/Jean Le Cam FRA and 'Neutrogena' (Guillermo Altadill ESP/Jose Munoz CHI) enjoyed good sailing conditions, and the 3rd-ranked Anna Corbella/Gerard Marin ESP are now over 500 miles back (more than 24 hours). Stamm/Le Cam were 89 miles ahead this morning, and this difference will most probably stay until the passage of Cape of Good Hope.
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Offshore Racing – Thursday, January 22, 2015
Thursday, January 22, 2015   (Image © Gilles Martin-Raget)
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Until the past night, Bernard Stamm SUI/Jean Le Cam FRA enjoyed very favorable conditions on their direct course to the Cape, but now, another high pressure cell is ahead, redirecting them south-wards. They expect to reach the westerly breeze during the day for the 4-week-fast-ride to the Cape. Guillermo Altadill ESP/Jose Munoz CHI have already reached the Roaring Forties, accelerating to speeds of almost 20 kn. They reduced the backlog on the leaders meanwhile on 144 miles, and will get even closer in the next hours.
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Thursday, January 22, 2015   
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No significant position changes happened during the two days' passage of the Malacca Strait. The Chinese 'Dongfeng' with Charles Caudrelier FRA has now reached the South China Sea, and the pursuing quartet still closely together, led by 'Abu Dhabi' (Ian Walker GBR), follows 60 miles behind. 'SCA' (Samantha Davies GBR) is 148 miles back still in the Malacca Strait.
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Offshore Racing – Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Wednesday, January 21, 2015   
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The Malacca Strait is as expected full of unusual situations. In total calm zones and a 1 kn counter current, the yachts were even forced to cast anchors several times. 'Dongfeng' (Charles Caudrelier FRA) still leading the fleet has now again some wind and has been able to increase the advance on the quartet following now 82 miles behind. 'Abu Dhabi' (Ian Walker GBR), 'Mapfre' (Javi Fernandez ESP), 'Brunel' (Bouwe Bekking NED) and 'Alvimedica' (Charlie Enright USA) are sailing within 2 miles close to the Malaysian coast, searching for wind. In addition to the difficult wind situation, the flotsam niggles the teams and the daggerboards have to be freed from plastic and other floating objects continuously.
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Wednesday, January 21, 2015   (Image © Thierry Martinez)
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Up to now, the strategy of Bernard Stamm SUI/Jean Le Cam FRA on the South Atlanic seems to fit. They were the first to turn East sailing in a good breeze on the direct way to the Cape of Good Hope. Their advance on the second-ranked 'Neutrogena' (Altadill ESP/Munoz CHI) is now 161 miles. Anna Corbella/Gerard Marin ESP on rank 3 are sailing in the same weather system as the leader, but 290 miles behind 'Cheminées Poujoulat'. The rest of the fleet is still fighting with the low-wind St-Helena anticyclone. The fourth-ranked Jörg Riechers GER/Sébastien Audigane FRA are already 827 miles behind.
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Offshore Racing – Tuesday, January 20, 2015
Tuesday, January 20, 2015   (Image © Gilles Martin-Raget)
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A difficultly to read weather situation over the South Atlantic lead to a separation of the leading duo. While Bernard Stamm SUI/Jean Le Cam FRA are benefitting from the fresh north-easterly winds heading for the Cape of Good Hope, Guillermo Altadill ESP/José Munoz CHI have opted for a southern course, hoping to find the roaring forties express highway soon. At present, the advantage of the Franco-Swiss team is 165 miles and it remains to be seen for how long the good breeze stays on. Jörg Riechers GER/Sébastien Audigane FRA, having opted for the direct route passing the St-Helena anticyclone paid dearly. As 4th they are stuck in calms and are by large the slowest boat of the fleet.
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Tuesday, January 20, 2015   
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As expected, the fleet closed up in the very light winds of the Malacca Strait, and the advantage of the leading 'Dongfeng' (Charles Caudrelier FRA) on the 2nd-ranked 'Alvimedica' (Charlie Enright USA) is down to 24 miles. Ranks 2 to 5 are separated by 12 miles only. The all-female team 'SCA' with Samantha Davies GBR reduced the gap on 78 miles. Up to now, about one third of the narrows have been crossed, and surprises are still possible.
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Offshore Racing – Monday, January 19, 2015
Monday, January 19, 2015   (Image © Gilles Martin-Raget)
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The leading duo with 'Cheminées Poujoulat' Bernard Stamm SUI/Jean Le Cam FRA and 16 miles behind 'Neutrogena' (Guillermo Altadill ESP/José Munoz CHI) found a front on the edge of the St-Helena anticyclone allowing them to sail east with a good speed. How long, remains to be seen. The rest of the fleet is now over 140 miles behind. 'Renault Capur' with Jörg Riechers GER/Sébastien Audigane FRA on rank 4 had the courage to try to cross the calm center area of the high pressure system directly, but the sail at a much lower speed as the rest of the fleet.
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Monday, January 19, 2015   (Image © Amory Ross/Team Alvimedica/Volvo Ocean Race)
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'Dongfeng' (Charles Caudrelier FRA) just grasped a final fresher puff of wind yesterday to enter the Malacca Strait, increasing the lead on the second-ranked 'Alvimedica' (Charlie Enright USA) to 99 miles. The Americans made the jump from rank 5 to 2 by opting for a SE route just in time. 'SCA' (Samantha Davies GBR) not far away from 'Alvimedica' made this choice too early and remained last with a 137 miles backlog. Today, the gaps between the yachts will be reduced again as the wind in the narrows will not exceed 3 kn !
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Offshore Racing – Sunday, January 18, 2015
Sunday, January 18, 2015   (Image © Renault Captur)
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The leading duo is still benefitting from a fresh 20 kn breeze on the edge of the St-Helena high pressure zone and is sailing South at a good pace. Bernard Stamm SUI/Jean Le Cam FRA extended their lead on 'Neutrogena' (Altadill ESP/Munoz CHI), on the same track as the Franco-Swiss team, to 22 miles. Last yesterday with a 920 miles backlog were 'Spirit of Hungary' with Nador Fa HUN/Conrad Coleman NZL/USA who just crossed the Equator.
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Sunday, January 18, 2015   (Image © Matt Knighton/Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing/Volvo Ocean Race)
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Somewhat fresher as expected was the breeze during the night and the leader 'Dongfeng' is now about to enter the Malacca Strait with an advantage on the second-ranked 'Mapfre' of 50 miles. The ranks 2 to 5 are separated by 17 miles only, and 'SCA' at the end of the fleet has gained some miles and her deficit on the leader is now 87 miles. The adventure Malacca with light, circling winds, heavy cargo traffic, fishermen's boats and even pirates is just to begin.
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Offshore Racing – Saturday, January 17, 2015
Saturday, January 17, 2015   (Image © Gilles Martin-Raget)
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The wind is about to vanish along the Brazilian coast influenced by the St-Helena anticyclone. Yesterday's leader 'Neutrogena' (Altadill ESP/Munoz CHI) plans obviously to benefit from the unclear weather situation having opted for the 'Stealth Mode', i.e. remain invisible for 24 hours. This morning at 9 a.m. UTC, she will reappear on the radar and it will become apparent whether she started an attack.
Bernard Stamm SUI/Jean Le Cam FRA are therefore for the time being on rank 1 ahead of Anna Corbella/Gerard Martin ESP with a 78 miles backlog. Jörg Riechers GER/Sébastien Audigane FRA follow another 50 miles behind.
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Saturday, January 17, 2015   (Image © Corinna Halloran/Team SCA/Volvo Ocean Race)
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The fleet moves ahead very slowly on Bay of Bengal, and this without position changes, but the gaps between the boats have increased again. The leading 'Dongfeng' and the backmarker 'SCA' are now 91 miles apart, and also the backlog of the second-ranked 'Mapfre' is considerable with 57 miles. As from tomorrow, the scenario will be rearranged: the Malacca Strait, the busiest gut world-wide. 'Dongfeng' will enter this sound tomorrow morning and in addition to the collision threat, the circling and light winds will keep the teams on alert during at least 48 hours.
The race viewer and the daily report. The teams look forward to this most entertaining part of the round-the-world race !
Offshore Racing – Friday, January 16, 2015
Friday, January 16, 2015   (Image © Amory Ross/Team Alvimedica/Volvo Ocean Race)
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A big calm reigns over the Bay of Bengal and the leading 'Dongfeng' (Charles Caudrelier FRA) moved only 66 miles during the past 24 hours, leaving much time for the crew for special activities such as filming the boat from above with a drone. Here the video.
No news re the positions. 'Mapfre' with Javi Fernandez ESP as 2nd is 60 miles behind the Chinese. The last-ranked 'SCA' (Samantha Davies GBR) is now 92 miles back.
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Friday, January 16, 2015   (Image © We Are Wate)
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The fleet is still sailing South in a moderate southern trade wind around 15 kn along the Brazilian Coast. Today, 'Neutrogena' (Altadill ESP/Munoz CHI), now in the lead, and 'Cheminées Poujoulat' 8 miles behind will reach the St-Helena anticyclone calm area. This year, the high pressure zone is split in two and it remains to see, whether one or more teams dare to pass in the middle between these two systems.
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Offshore Racing – Thursday, January 15, 2015
Thursday, January 15, 2015   
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The leading 'Hugo Boss' with Alex Thomson GBR/Pepe Ribes ESP lost the mast yesterday after a fatigue break sailing in moderate wind and wave conditions. This is the end of the Barcelona World Race for the favorite team on their latest edition Open 60. The team is on its way to San Salvador de Bahia under jury rig. Bernard Stamm SUI/Jean Le Cam FRA have taken the lead 17 miles ahead of Anna Corbella/Gerard Marin ESP as 2nd on a more direct course in the East. Guillermo Altadill ESP/Jose Munoz CHI only 3 miles farther back, but on a similar course as the leader, will move up on 2nd today.
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Thursday, January 15, 2015   (Image © Sam Greenfield)
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After a short period of fresher winds South of Sri Lanka, the six teams of the Volvo Ocean Race are now faced with three low wind days in the Bay of Bengal, with 4 kn maximum.
'Dongfeng' with Charles Caudrelier FRA is now 60 miles ahead of the four persuers within 7 miles from 'Mapfre' (Javi Fernandez ESP) on rank 2 to 'Alvimedica' (Charlie Enright USA) on rank 5. Only 'SCA' (Samantha Davies GBR) is more and more distanced with now a backlog of 100 miles.
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