The '2,000 miles to go' to Cape Town mark has been passed and Team Telefónica are in first place at 37ºS and preparing for the arrival of the first Southern squall: “It'll get here during the night and it'll be the first we've caught in the South Atlantic,” said Basque Skipper Iker Martínez this morning.
“We'll try to go as fast as we can in the front part of the front, which is where there's less swell and where the boat will suffer the least.” With “Puma”'s broken mast on his mind, Iker admitted that “it's so hard to know where the limits are when it comes to equipment and it's so easy to overstep the line and to break something, although you can't spend the whole time fretting about that as prudence in excess zaps confidence and that would be a real disaster...”
“Puma” announced officially that they'd retired from the first leg of the Volvo Ocean Race last night. Following over 4,000 miles together, Team Telefónica's main rival is now Camper with Emirates Team New Zealand, some 105 miles behind the Spanish yacht, which is pushing forward at 17.7 knots.
Thinking of the “Puma crew
“Telefónica” Skipper Iker Martínez sent an email this morning and as expected, he began by mentioning the dismasting of what has been his closest rival and the entry in closest pursuit so far in the regatta: the North American entry “Puma”.
“Yesterday it was clearer than ever to us that any leg in this regatta is only over once you are across the finishing line,” wrote Iker Martínez. “We are very sorry for the guys on “Puma” and all of us here on “Telefónica” felt a shiver down our spines when we heard the news, especially when you think about what dismasting at those latitudes means,” said the double Olympic medallist before finding our about “Puma”'s official withdrawal from the leg.
When the mast broke both “Puma” and “Telefónica” were on a Match Race that had stretched out over some 4,000 miles, with average speeds topping 23 knots. “Capey told me at one point in the afternoon that we had covered 470 miles in the past 24 hours, so that gives you an idea of how fast we were going”, said the Media Crew Member on “Telefónica”, Diego Fructuoso this morning referring to a conversation with Navigator Andrew Cape. “It's a real shame for a team that has fought so hard in this regatta and was really making things difficult for us! They definitely didn't deserve such bad luck,” concluded the Spaniard.
Recounting provisions and doubling up layers
Sailing down at 37ºS the cold is beginning to really make its presence felt and the water temperature is dropping fast. As a consequence on board “Telefónica”, “there's no one brave enough to be sporting lightweight slippers any more and since yesterday it's been boots all the way,” wrote Iker Martínez. “The cold has arrived on “Telefónica” and the guys are doubling up the layers on their sleeping bags. I've got the fleece offshore salopettes on already.”
So the relative calm of recent days is over although it did give the guys a chance to recount provisions. The results: good. “We are doing well both in terms of food and petrol if we don't have a delay of more than 48 hours on our ideal routing, which is doable if we don't suffer any damage that makes us slow down,” said Iker.
To read the entire email sent by Iker Martínez click here.
PROVISIONAL RANKINGS LEG 1
ALICANTE (SPAIN) – CAPE TOWN (SOUTH AFRICA): 6,500 miles
Day 18 – 16:00 GMT – 22nd November 2011
1. Team Telefónica (Iker Martínez), 1,898.8 miles from leg finish
2. Camper with Emirates Team New Zealand (Chris Nicholson), + 105.1 miles from leader
3. Groupama Sailing Team (Franck Cammas), + 282.9 miles
Puma Ocean Racing (Ken Read), retired from Leg 1
Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing (Ian Walker), retired from Leg 1
Team Sanya (Mike Sanderson), retired from Leg 1
The first night on the route to Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates) wasn't easy on Iker Martínez and “Telefónica”, nor was it easy on the rest of the fleet. ...
Spanish boat “Telefónica” dominated today in a brilliant coastal race in Table Bay, Cape Town, South Africa. Basque Skipper Iker Martínez and his crew have now added six new ...
On Sunday the second leg of the Volvo Ocean Race will kick off, with 30 new points to play for and over 5,400 miles of racing ahead between the South ...
16 days after winning the first leg of the Volvo Ocean Race and setting a milestone in Spanish sailing history by becoming the first Spanish boat to take the lead ...
Pirate attacks in the conflict-ridden waters off the East coast of Africa, in particular opposite Somalia have unfortunately been big news in the national and international press over the past ...