Movistar reaches Rio de Janeiro

by Volvo 
Volvo Open 70 movistar comes into Rio at the end of Leg 4 ©Jose Olimpio
Movistar Sailing Team skippered by Dutchman Bouwe Bekking arrived in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, today at 16:11:46 GMT after 25 days, 14 hours, 41 minutes and 46 seconds at sea.

The team were having a highly competitive leg four until just before Cape Horn when they suffered a major leak surrounding the keel box. They suspended racing and motored into Ushuaia, Argentina, for repairs before finishing the leg in fickle and light winds.

The team now face a race against time to repair the boat and get it ready for the in-port race on the 25 March; something that Bekking feels is achievable:

'Our mission now is to get the boat out of the water, remove the keel and replace the keel wedges. This will take 5-6 days if everything goes according to plan and then the next aim will be the in-port race.'

Skipper Bouwe Bekking at the helm as Volvo Open 70 movistar comes into Rio at the end of Leg 4 ©Jose Olimpio
Despite the set back on leg four, Bekking explained how important it was to finish the leg: 'It was hugely important to finish the leg, for the team as a whole and for ourselves onboard. It was a big disappointment as we were going really well just before Cape Horn and then it was a slap in the face to be last in the fleet, but we just had to get on and finish the leg with as many points as possible.'

He concluded: 'The boat goes nicely. We have had our fair share of issues but hopefully we can get all of those sorted now.'

Australian Navigator Andrew Cape described the high point of the leg: 'We had a near record run just before we suffered damage. We were pushing the boat hard that day and the speed was just awesome. It was typically hairy but not too scary as you get quite used to doing those kinds of speeds now. Those days are always good days.'

Looking forward Cape commented: 'We are naturally disappointed with the damage but we never felt that we were not safe and we had other boats around us. We now need to concentrate on fixing the boat, having some rest and then getting back out there and getting stuck into the race again.'

Movistar is currently placed fourth overall, just two and a half points behind third placed Pirates of the Caribbean.

1 ABN1 3.5 7.0 10.5 11/03/06 03:18:23 020d 01h 48m 23s 49.0 1
2 POTC 3 6.0 9.0 11/03/06 07:06:50 020d 05h 36m 50s 30.5 3
3 ABN2 2 5.0 7.0 11/03/06 07:36:10 020d 06h 06m 10s 35.0 2
4 BRA1 2.5 4.0 6.5 11/03/06 07:55:04 020d 06h 25m 04s 26.5 5
5 ERIC 1.5 3.0 4.5 11/03/06 19:12:52 020d 17h 42m 52s 21.0 6
6 MOVI 1 2.0 3.0 16/03/06 16:11:46 025d 14h 41m 46s 28.0 4