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Sail-World.com : Cinq équipages s’affrontent sur la Round Britain and Ireland Race
Cinq équipages s’affrontent sur la Round Britain and Ireland Race

'Spanish Volvo Ocean Race team'    Maria Muina    Click Here to view large photo

En route vers la Grande Bretagne, l’équipage d’Iker Martínez teste cette semaine de nouveaux équipiers. Le bateau espagnol se prépare à participer à la Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race.

La Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race débutera samedi 9 août et sera précédée de l’incontournable Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week. Parmi les nouveaux Volvo Ocean 65, cinq prendront le départ de la Britain and Ireland Race. Une course de 1 800 milles que l’on sait particulièrement exigeante avec de nombreux pièges à gérer : courants, vents instables, proximité des côtes,…

Team SCA, Team Alvimedica, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing et Dongfeng Race Team rejoindront l’équipage de Martínez sur la ligne de départ – un dernier test grandeur nature avant le départ de la Volvo Ocean Race en octobre prochain.


L’Espagnol a proposé à Guillermo ‘Willy’ Altadill – le fils du navigateur du même nom – et Carlos Hernández de rejoindre l’équipage pour participer à cette course d’entrainement ; les deux hommes espèrent bien intégrer le team pour le tour du monde.

À respectivement 21 et 27 ans, Guillermo et Carlos compteront pour « les moins de 30 ans du bord » comme le veut le règlement (selon les règles de course, il doit toujours y avoir à bord au moins deux équipiers de moins de 30 ans). Mais malgré leur jeunesse, le duo pourrait être une réelle valeur ajoutée pour l’équipage.

Carlos Hernandez and Willy Altadill -  Maria Muina   Click Here to view large photo

'Ce sont de bons marins, et ils ont une belle expérience des gros bateaux,' ajoute Martínez. 'Nous avons navigué ensemble ces derniers jours, et tous les deux ont montré de fortes capacités. Ils sont jeunes, ont le sens de l’adaptation et possèdent de grandes qualités techniques. Nous aimerions tester encore 10 équipiers mais nous n’avons pas le temps, c’est le problème de notre calendrier très serré.'

Pendant ce temps, Dongfeng Race Team a quitté sa base de Lorient et fait lui aussi route vers l’Angleterre. Un voyage particulièrement excitant pour les marins chinois qui n’y ont jamais été auparavant.

'Plusieurs équipiers chinois vont participer à la course, et c’est déjà une étape importante pour la Chine en termes de course au large,' raconte le directeur du team, Bruno Dubois.

'Il y a toujours beaucoup de choses à faire mais si l‘on regarde la situation dans son ensemble et notre objectif à long terme, c’est déjà un premier succès. Je suis fier d’avoir atteint ce point en seulement six mois.'

Ce convoyage vers la Grande-Bretagne représente aussi une belle occasion de faire le point pour le Team SCA, qui a quitté Lanzarote après 18 mois d’entrainement.

Les filles sont à l’aise avec cette navigation de huit jours et Corinna Halloran, reporter embarquée, estime que ce convoyage sera un excellent entrainement pour la course à venir.

'Nous sommes bien dans notre organisation quotidienne. Un quotidien que nous allons devoir supporter quelques jours dans l’immédiat, mais que nous devrons accepter pendant des semaines pour les étapes les plus longues du tour du monde.'

Arrivé à Southampton la semaine dernière après une transat depuis Rhode Island aux Etats-Unis, Team Alvimedica a profité d’une pause bien méritée.

Le skipper Charlie Enright est ravi du comportement de son équipe pendant cette transat, et pense que les conditions difficiles et imprévisibles qu’ils ont rencontrées ont servi à renforcer l’esprit d’équipe.

'Cette transat était incroyable pour la dynamique de l’équipage. C’était la première fois que j’étais avec sept membres de l’équipe et chaque petit changement que l’on a pu opérer allait dans le bon sens,' dit-il.

'La Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race est une nouvelle étape pour l’équipage. Nous l’abordons comme un entrainement et nous allons essayer d’apprendre et d’aiguiser nos compétences. C’est une grande opportunité et nous sommes très enthousiastes.'

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing a aussi effectué une transatlantique et participera également à la Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race. L’équipage embarquera à ses côtés pour l’Artemis Challenge (course de 50 milles à Cowes le 7 août), Keith Burhans, un américain handicapé de 58 ans, et heureux vainqueur du jeu concours organisé par le team.

'Avoir la chance de naviguer avec eux, c’est un rêve qui devient réalité,' a -t-il déclaré.

Alors que la plupart des équipes s’apprêtent à participer à la Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race, Team Brunel reste à terre pour poursuivre la préparation et arriver dans les meilleures conditions possibles au départ.

L’équipe a passé beaucoup de temps sur la préparation physique avec son entraineur Dominic Ramino. Bouwe Bekking, le skipper expérimenté de Team Brunel, estime que la condition physique peut faire la différence sur les longues étapes.


'Nous allons à la salle de sport tous les matins depuis cinq mois. Avec l’aide de Ramino, nous allons arriver en pleine forme pour le départ à Alicante.'

Et alors que le départ approche à grands pas maintenant, Pablo Díaz-Munio a été nommé médecin officiel de la Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15.

Après avoir collaboré avec Ericsson Racing Team en 2008-9, et avoir été le médecin officiel de Team Teléfonica de 2011-12, l’Espagnol ne connaît que trop bien les défis que relèvent les marins y compris sur le plan de la santé.

Díaz-Munio a aussi accompagné le montagnard Edurne Pasaban dans ses trois records sur l’Himalaya.

'Dans ce genre de compétition, le plus petit des problèmes peut devenir majeur et un problème majeur peut devenir une urgence,' explique le médecin de la course.

Volvo Ocean Race


by Volvo Ocean Race


  

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6:19 PM Sat 2 Aug 2014GMT


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2014 -15 Volvo Ocean Race
2014 Sevenstar Round Britain & Ireland Race

Related News Stories:

01 Aug 2014  Volvo Ocean Race crews to battle in Round Britain test
01 Aug 2014  El Equipo Español prueba dos tripulantes rumbo a Inglaterra
31 Jul 2014  Musandam-Oman Sail crew swap hulls as MOD70 heads to Cowes
31 Jul 2014  Un médico todo terreno para la Volvo Ocean Race
30 Jul 2014  Round Britain and Ireland Race 2014 - Tactics, endurance, achievement
30 Jul 2014  Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race sets off August 10th
29 Jul 2014  Sir Robin Knox-Johnston to compete in Round Britain and Ireland Race
25 Jul 2014  Marina Rubicón Round Canary Islands Race - First blood to Team Brunel
23 Jul 2014  Spirits high as Team Alvimedica completes Transatlantic crossing
22 Jul 2014  MOD70 Musandam-Oman Sail gears up for busy British racing season
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