Skipper Simeon Tienpont’s team AkzoNobel led the Volvo Ocean Race fleet away from the Hong Kong start line early this morning as Leg 6 got underway to Auckland, New Zealand.
Racing started in a light, 8-10 knot easterly, but shortly after clearing land, the wind started to increase to 15-20 knots, and the enormous Code 0 sails were furled in favour of smaller headsails. Conditions are forecast to deteriorate further over the next 24 hours.
“It’s predominantly upwind, so it’s going to be a tough first few days,” said Turn the Tide on Plastic skipper Dee Caffari.
With a Tropical Cyclone forecast to produce heavy sea conditions, race officials have added a Tropical Storm Exclusion Zone, extending across 20 degrees of longitude to the east of the Philippines.
Most weather routing software suggests the fastest route is to the north and east of the exclusion zone but this will ensure the fleet avoids the worst of the sea conditions.
The beginning of the course will take the fleet through the Luzon Strait and then on an easterly heading before the boats dive south through the Doldrums and then southeast to the northern tip of New Zealand.
Beginning on February 7, Leg 6 is a 6,100 nautical mile race from Hong Kong to Auckland, New Zealand.
For crew lists… click here.
Damage: Only six of the seven teams will compete in Leg 6 as Vestas 11th Hour Racing is still repairing the boat following the collision with a fishing boat as they neared the finish line of Leg 4 in Hong Kong. The team has shipped their boat to Auckland to complete repairs in time for the March 18 start of Leg 7 to Itajaí, Brazil.
Race details – Tracker – Scoreboard – Race route – Facebook – YouTube
Overall Results (after 5 of 11 legs)
1. MAPFRE (ESP), Xabi Fernández (ESP), 34 points
2. Dongfeng Race Team (CHN), Charles Caudrelier (FRA), 30
3. Vestas 11th Hour Racing (DEN/USA), Charlie Enright (USA), 23
4. Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag (HKG), David Witt (AUS), 20
5. Team Brunel (NED), Bouwe Bekking (NED), 18
6. Team AkzoNobel (NED), Simeon Tienpont (NED), 15
7. Turn the Tide on Plastic (POR), Dee Caffari (GBR), 9
2017-18 Edition: Entered Teams – Skippers
• Team AkzoNobel (NED), Simeon Tienpont (NED)
• Dongfeng Race Team (CHN), Charles Caudrelier (FRA)
• MAPFRE (ESP), Xabi Fernández (ESP)
• Vestas 11th Hour Racing (DEN/USA), Charlie Enright (USA)
• Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag (HKG), David Witt (AUS)
• Turn the Tide on Plastic (POR), Dee Caffari (GBR)
• Team Brunel (NED), Bouwe Bekking (NED)
Volvo Ocean Race/Scuttlebutt Sailing News