Wednesday, 28 January 2015

DONGFENG takes Victory in Hometown.

DONGFENG takes Victory in Sanya, China, for the Leg 3 in VolvoOceanRace. It is a well desireved Victory for this young team , who lead most of the Leg 3 route.

DONGFENG on her way to the Finish in Sanya.
By virtue of this Win, Dongfeng is now also Leader in the Overall Ranking for the VOR. It was a sweat home-coming and always is nicest to win in your hometown.

Dongfeng has sailed a superb Leg3, with taking the lead in the Indian Ocean and slowly but steady extending their lead. The route had some moments with the harmonica effect, inside the Strait of Malacca , which must have boosted the nerves of the Dongfeng sailors, but by not making major mistakes, they kept the lead and brought it home.

The complete ranking for the Leg 3 arrivals is here:

Dongfeng Race Team
, Sailing time23d 13h 31m 38s

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing
,sailing time23d 16h 50m 30s
Team Alvimedica,               SAiling time23d 17h 51m 15s

MAPFRE,                            SAiling time23d 18h 23m 20s

Team Brunel,                     SAiling time23d 18h 23m 20s

Team SCA,                        SAiling time24d 02h 41m 45s

 The TAB SCORECARD above will bring You to the scorecards.

Next event is the Sanya In-Port Race on Saturday 7th February.

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Dongfeng now "out of reach" in Malacca Straits.

Dongfeng entered the Malacca straits with an 100+ Nm advantage , and I think they will leave the same strait will about the same advantage.

Dongfeng will lead the VOR fleet to Singapore.
The Malacca straits is known by sailors for its variable and weak winds, and other dangers as busy shipping lanes and fishing boats and more even fishing nets. 
Dongfeng, had their divers 2 times down, to remove rubbish from their keel, but managed it well, while never loosing their lead. 

The VOR fleet compacted in the middle of the strait, where Dongfeng's advantage reduced to just over 20Nm, skyrocketing their nerves. But while the other boats were approaching the region of calm winds, Dongfeng was about the leave it. Since then, their advantage has grown again till 80 Nm at this moment. With a narrow navigation channel due to exclusion zones and a steady NE breeze towards Singapore, I don't see any options for the other boats to catch let alone pass Dongfeng before Singapore. 

The battle for the 2nd --> 5th place is more interesting, as those 4 boats are separated by only 3Nm.
The Boats that passes Singapore in the lead , will have a very good chance to take the Victory to Sanya, China.

Thursday, 15 January 2015

Dongfeng has escaped the VolvoOceanRace fleet.

An intermediate sprint in the Indian Ocean has given Dongfeng a comfortable lead of 65+Nm. 

Dongfeng in the Lead towards Banda Aceh mark, 15Jan 0900utc.
Last Day it looks like that Dongfeng had escaped from a region of weak winds, and closed the door behind them. Just before a major wind-shift, that forced all other boats to sail North, while Dongfeng was nicely sailing to the East where the next mark waits.  This gained them a large advance and with very weak winds, contrary to a strong NE monsoon wind, it is not likely that the following boats will pass them before the Banda Aceh mark that marks the often unsettled sailing through the Mallaca straits, contrary I foresee that Dongfeng will extend their lead in coming days. 

Dongfeng has now already for over a week the lead in the fleet that rounded the Southern tip of India where the fleet compacted.But as Dongfeng kept a lead, be it small, they benefitted as first of better winds and extended their lead again. This harmonica effect repeated itself at SriLanka mark, caused by the windshadow of the S.L. mountains and surprisingly repeated itself again in the middle between Sri Lanka and Sumatra; most likely the fleet will compact again in the Mallaca strait.

Dongfeng might initially not have been the favorite Boat, but with this strong sailing in Leg 3 (and lets not forget their good performance during the Leg 1 and Leg 2) , by now each sailor in or following the VolvoOceanRace is aware that Dongfeng is a strong contender in the race for the Victory in Stockholm.

Sunday, 4 January 2015

VolvoOceanRace Leg 3 has started

Where the wind was lacking during the In-Port race, the mist was hindering the sight during the Start of Leg 3 in AbuDhabi.
Ian Walker, whether he called for the mist, but for sure with his local knowledge, he benefited the most during the firsts Leg.  He rounded the buoy with a comfortable lead and stayed  ahead till the Boats sailed through the start-gate into the Gulf towards Sanya, China.

A compacted VOR Fleet through the Strait of Hormuz

During the night with calm reaching winds, AbuDhabi kept their lead, followed by Dongfeng and Brunel managed to sail into the 3rd place.
Going around the Musadam cliffs, however , the fleet compressed and Dongfeng took the lead shortly.

Now the Boats are sailing the Sea of Oman and have to round the southern tip of India before sailing East to the Finish.

Video's are available for both the AbuDhabi In-Port and Start races in Youtube or you can use the links in my page on Video's via the TAB in the top.

Saturday, 3 January 2015

The Ladies Boat won , ahead of the LEG 3 start Today.

For Sailing you need a well equipped Sailing Boat, a crew and some Wind. 

The wind failed in AbuDhabi at the starting time, causing a delayed start. But luckily the wind got just strong enough later to make sailing possible. 

The cruxial  tack

MAPHRE made a victorious start sailing away from the pack to the left. All boats followed on Starboard Tack, till Dongfeng first soon followed by SCA made a tack to the right. For SCA , this was there deciding moment as this brought them so much advantage that there first position after the first leg, was never in danger again. Brunel, tacked not too long after SCA and got a nice 2nd place behind the ladies , which they hold on, without really having to fight for it, till the finish.

A MAPHRE you may ask? Well after their fantastic start, they realised at the first buoys that they lost the race. Though they had a try to pass Alvimedica , that was not even possible and MAPHRE ended up last.

After the In-Port race , TODAY, SATURDAY 3rd January 2015 the Starting shot will allow at 10:00 UTC, the six VO65 Boats to start the LEG 3 from AbuDhabi to Sanya,China.

First the Boats will sail a starting circuit, see image before sailing into the Open Waters of the Gulf. You can follow this race-start live on VOR web or Youtube.

AbuDhabi Leg 3  start circuit

The route will sail them , South of Sri Lanka, through the Strait of Malacca , along Singapore and the Vietnamese coast to the Finish.

You can follow the Leg 3 race on the VOR website or you may even try to sail virtually alongside your hero's in a Virtual Sailing Player.

Thursday, 1 January 2015

VolvoOceanRace continues .......

After a End of Year Holiday in AbuDhabi, it is time to start thinking on the continuation of the VolvoOceanRace. 

Circuit for AbuDhabi In-Port race

Well, tomorrow, FRIDAY, 2nd January 2015 at 1000 GMT, indeed 1400 local, the In-Port Race in AbuDhabi will start.

Depending on the wind just before the Start, will decide how many legs will have to be sailed till the Finish, so be alert. 

The In-Port Race will be amongst 6 Boats only as Vestas Wind, boat is still not returned in healthy state able to sail.

For worldwide sailing enthousiasts, there is a possibility to watch live images of this AbuDhabi In-Port race on the VOR website or Youtube, VOR channel.

A day later the Leg 3 AbuDhabi to Sanya, China will start.