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06 Feb 2012

VOR: Three in a row—Sailing news from the U.S. and beyond

Team Telefonica, skippered by Iker Martinez from Spain finishes first on leg 3 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 from Abu Dhabi, UAE, to Sanya, China. (Photo Credit must read: IAN ROMAN/Volvo Ocean Race) - Volvo Ocean Race - Leg 3B finish Sanya, China  Ian Roman/Volvo Ocean Race
Offshore-sailing circles were abuzz this weekend with news of skipper Iker Martinez and his Telefonica teammates' third-straight offshore leg win in the ongoing Volvo Ocean Race (VOR). The team is the first to have claimed this hat-trick honor in the past 22 years of race history, making the reward for all their hard work that much sweeter.

'It's one of the toughest legs I've done,' reported Andrew Cape, Telefonica's navigator. 'Mentally it was very difficult, tactically very difficult. Physically it wasn't as tough as a long southern ocean leg but mentally it was really hard.' Crossing the line in Telefonica's wake was Groupama, followed by Emirates Team New Zealand's Camper. Puma Ocean Racing came in a disappointing fourth after an easterly hitch failed to play out, followed by Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing and Team Sanya. Get the full VOR lowdown, inside.

Also offshore related, things are getting a bit rough in the Global Ocean Race where the fleet has been taking a multi-day upwind pounding. Sadly, this thrashing claimed the father-and-son team of Ross and Campbell Field aboard Buckley Systems, as massive conditions, equipment breakage and human injury exacted a far higher toll than expected, and the two plotted a course for dry land.
Buckley Systems was leading the Global Ocean Race at the time of the incident.  Ivor Wilkins/Offshore Images

The same sad fate befell Halvard Mabire and Miranda Merron aboard Campagne de France, who had been sitting in second place prior to the thrashing, which was described as Force 8-9 winds accompanied by massive seas. This recent attrition whittles the fleet down to three strong, all of whom are pressing deeper into the challenging leg that will carry the fleet from Wellington, New Zealand to Punta del Este, Uruguay. More, inside.

In Cup circles, residents of Auckland, New Zealand were recently given front-row seats to watch their hometown Emirates Team New Zealand squad engaging in a little bit of friendly sparing against the Italian-flagged Luna Rossa.

While the two teams enjoy an unprecedented friendly relationship, the four races were notable for being one of the few times that the newly minted Italian-backed team has sailed their fully logoed, wingsail-powered AC45 catamaran.
ETNZ-Prada-050212 (3) - Luna Rossa and Emirates Team NZ - Practice Racing, Waitemata Harbour  Richard Gladwell

Moreover, it was also one of the first times that the two teams have flown their wingsail extensions, which were developed to add punch in lighter airs. While beginner's luck evaded the Italians in all four races, there's no doubt that that both teams gained valuable mileage and experience with their wingsail extensions thanks to their copasetic relationship.

And finally, be sure to get the latest scoop on the Women's Match Racing Country Qualifier, the Clipper Around the World Race, and the names of the six newly selected members of the 2012 U.S. Paralympic Team, inside this issue.

May the four winds blow you safely home,

David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor

America's Cup: Emirates TNZ and Luna Rossa race in Auckland + Video
Richard Gladwell,
Auckland's America's Cup fans got the chance, today, to see what they have missed, with the no-show of an expected event in the America's Cup World Series. On the inner harbour course, familiar to many as a match racing track, bounded on its southern side by a number of vantage points, spectators got the chance to view at first hand, the two Auckland based America's Cup teams going head to head... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Telefonica takes Leg 3 win - Live Coverage
Volvo Ocean Race,
Team Telefónica became the first team to win the first three legs of a Volvo Ocean Race in 22 years as they swept to glory in Leg 3 from Abu Dhabi to Sanya. Not since Sir Peter Blake's Steinlager 2 made a clean sweep of all four legs of the 1989-90 edition of the Whitbread Round the World Race has the event seen such success.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Telefonica pulls ahead as Puma rejoins the fleet
Volvo Ocean Race,
In the Volvo Ocean Race, Puma has re-joined the fleet after a brief, but miserable sojourn to the east, while leaders of the pack, Team Telefónica, have again extended their lead over second-placed Groupama sailing team (Franck Cammas/FRA). At 2200 UTC tonight, Telefónica led Groupama 4 by 19.4 nautical miles (nm).... [more]
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Global Ocean Race: Buckley Systems damaged and heading for Auckland
Ivor Wilkins,
After crashing off a monstrous wave in the Southern Ocean, Global Ocean Race leaders Ross and Campbell Field of Team Buckley Systems have suffered damage to their yacht and are heading back to New Zealand. For the past 24 hours, the yacht has been smashing into in storm force winds and huge seas south east of the Chatham Islands.... [more]
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Kiteboarding and Windsurfing Format Trials in Santander
Kiteboarding and Windsurfing Format Trials evaluation event is to be held in Santander, Spain from 21 to 25 March 2012 at The Prince Felipe High Performance Centre which is also host to the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championships. In May 2011 ISAF Council selected Windsurfing and/or Kiteboarding as a possible event for the 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition.... [more]
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Clipper Round the World Yacht Race fleet divide
Heather Ewing,
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - There has been a division in the fleet as the ten 68-foot yachts navigate through the South China Sea. While Gold Coast Australia narrowly holds on to their lead, putting in their first tack since race start early this morning the trio of three yachts to the south east have successfully utilised the local funnelling conditions... [more]
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Winners named at 11th Club Nautico de San Juan International Regatta
Carol Bareuther,
11th Club Nautico de San Juan International Regatta (CNSJIR). The Advanced Optimist was the largest fleet of the regatta with 31 boats. Puerto Rico's Ponce Yacht & Fishing Club's (PYFC) Andre Reguero handily won with a 10-point lead.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Images from the return home for Sanya
Volvo Ocean Race,
Local crew member, Teng, better known as Tiger, was draped in a Chinese flag as he led Mike Sanderson's men across the line in the 2011-12 Volvo Ocean Race Leg 3 finish, into the team's home port at 12:35:17 UTC, bringing to an end 14 days of gruelling racing in Leg 3 Stage 2 from the Maldives.... [more]
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Women's Match Race Country Qualifier - Final spots claimed
At the 2012 Women's Match Racing International Country Olympic Qualifying Regatta, the final day of racing left one major question to be answered: Who will be the last country to qualify for a spot in the 2012 Women's Match Racing Event at the 2012 Olympic Games in London?... [more]
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blokart World Championships 2012 entries closing soon
Ross Vickers,
Entries are closing in four weeks time for the blokart World Championships 2012, to be held at Ivanpah dry lake, USA. With over 130 entrants so far, the racing is set showcase competitive blokart sailing at its best. Competitors from thirteen countries will compete alongside 33 US sailors for eight world titles. Racing is conducted in two classes, further broken in to four weight divisions.... [more]
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Global Ocean Race fleet hammer upwind
Oliver Dewar,
Global Ocean Race 2011-12 (GOR) first week of the third leg, from Wellington to Punta del Este, so far has been the most demanding of the entire circumnavigation. The five double handed Class40s have faced strong conditions from within hours of the start on Sunday 29 January... [more]
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Clipper Round the World Race fleet prepare for challenging conditions
Heather Ewing,
Clipper 11-12 Round the World Yacht Race fleet are well aware of what lies ahead on this stage from Singapore to Qingdao. While the majority of the world's longest yacht race follows the prevailing winds, this section of the 40,000-mile course is upwind, meaning the crews will be facing life at an angle for the next two and a half weeks.... [more]
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Women's Match Race Country Qualifier – Teams fight for final spots
Women's Match Race Country Qualifier – Emotions ran high on the water as Olympic dreams came true for some and ended for others. Finland and Spain will be going to the Olympics in Women's Match Racing and Germany and Slovenia will not. One more place remains to be decided on Sunday.... [more]
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America's Cup: Dalton claims expense at root of low challenger numbers
Contrary to claims elsewhere, Emirates Team NZ CEO, Grant Dalton is reported in the Herald on Sunday as saying that expense is the main reason there are so few challengers in the next America's Cup and not the oft-blamed world economy. Earlier in the week, America's Cup organisers were keen to damp down comments by America's Cup Regatta Management's Regatta Director, Iain Murray... [more]
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Global Ocean Race fleet stick together
Oliver Dewar,
Global Ocean Race (GOR) - Conditions have been improving significantly at the front of the fleet in the Southern Ocean since two of the Class40s turned back to New Zealand on Thursday. Leg three has already packed a significant punch with headwinds reaching up to Force 9 pounding the double-handed fleet and forcing the two lead boats, Buckley Systems and Campagne de France, to head west.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Puma fourth to cross finish
Lisa Ramsperger,
Volvo Ocean Race team Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg have completed the second stage of the third leg from Abu Dhabi, UAE, to Sanya, China in fourth overall. After a roller coaster leg they crossed the line at 08:29 UTC/16:29 local on Saturday 4th February 2012. The crew added 12 points to their overall total after completing the stage in 13 days, 29 minutes and 12 seconds.... [more]
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Clipper Round the World Yacht Race fleet set sail for Qingdao
Isabel Hokken,
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - After a week-long stopover in spectacular Singapore the ten yachts taking part in the race set sail this morning from the exclusive Marina at Keppel Bay, where they have been based since last Saturday. The send-off was no less spectacular than the welcome festivities, with drummers upping the tempo as the teams manned their boats in preparation for race start... [more]
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Women's Match Race Country Qualifier – Three countries eliminated
Women's Match Race Country Qualifier – Strong winds and tough competition proved to be the knock out punch for three of the nine teams as they were eliminated from the regatta today. The winds on Biscayne Bay whipped up for the second day of racing as the first stage was completed and the second stage began.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Screaming towards the Sanya finish
Volvo Ocean Race,
At 2200 UTC tonight, in the Volvo Ocean Race, the first four boats racing in Leg 3 Stage 2 were screaming towards the Sanya finish in a high-speed chase led by Iker Martinez and Team Telefónica. Groupama sailing team were holding on to second place, 30.20 nautical miles (nm) behind.... [more]
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America's Cup - Images of Artemis Racing on the water with two AC45s
Sander van der Borch,
Artemis Racing began an intense two-boat training session earlier this week in Valencia, following the acquisition of a second AC45 last month. Photographer Sander van der Borch shares with us this gallery of images of Artemis Racing on the water.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Rough onboard Puma's Mar Mostro
Amory Ross,
Volvo Ocean Race - Amory Ross, MCM for Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg, reports on the crew's progress: There's only a day and a half of racing left out here and still plenty to gain. It's yet another testament to the group of guys onboard that an unsuccessful and trying trek to the middle of the South China Sea hasn't sunk the ship.... [more]
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2012 US Paralympic Team selected + Video
Dana Paxton,
The six members of the 2012 U.S. Paralympic Team – Sailing have been selected. Jen French and JP Creignou, Mark LeBlanc, and Paul Callahan, Tom Brown and Bradley Johnson have successfully completed qualification.... [more]
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