Please select your home edition
Edition
Zhik ZKG

Volvo Ocean Race – Groupama cross Leg 7 finish in second

by Franck Cammas on 1 Jun 2012
Groupama Sailing Team during leg 7 - Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 Yann Riou/Groupama Sailing Team © /Volvo Ocean Race http://www.cammas-groupama.com/
Volvo Ocean Race 2011-2012 team Groupama 4 crossed the finish line in Lisbon in second place. By finishing second, a little over five minutes behind Abu Dhabi, Franck Cammas and his men sailed a superb seventh leg, which has enabled them to move up into the lead of the overall standing. Extremely intense throughout the 3,590-mile course between Miami and Lisbon, this leg confirms the determination of the crew of Groupama 4 who, in last place just two and a half days ago, finished just astern of the winning Emirati boat.

It's the finest leg of the Volvo Ocean Race so far, even though the French didn't secure a win! Indeed, Franck Cammas and his men have had everything thrown at them during this leg: leading as they exited a tropical storm shortly after the start, they saw the entire fleet close on them, then overtake them as they failed to hook onto a front which was escaping to Europe. After a climb against the wind at the back of the fleet, Groupama 4 latched onto some strong south-westerly wind offshore of Newfoundland and then began a fantastic comeback at an average of over 22 knots.

In conditions the French boat is particularly fond of, the crew put all its energy into this incredible charge of over 1,000 miles across the Atlantic. The upshot of this was that Groupama 4 managed to move back into second position, but the most difficult part of their journey still lay ahead them as the fleet was tightly bunched less than 400 miles from the finish. A zone of calms still needed to be traversed and Franck Cammas and his men managed to find a way out to the South, whilst keeping their rivals at a respectable distance. Solely Abu Dhabi managed to extract itself from this ridge of high pressure with them, albeit with a lead of just fifteen miles as the wind kicked round to the North. What ensued was a battle royal at the entrance to the Tagus River, since the two boats were sailing within sight of each other as night fell over Portugal.

In a breeze, which was gradually dying the closer they got to the finish line, the two crews had a nerve-jangling climax to their race, less than 500 metres from one another. Ultimately the Emirati boat secured the win by just five minutes 27 seconds after 11 days four hours and 29 minutes of racing! Though the result comes as a great satisfaction for all the Groupama team, most important to them is their success in the overall standing, since the French have now taken control: the Spanish finished fourth behind the Americans, with a lead of just one minute 42 seconds over the New Zealanders…

Whilst there are still two offshore legs remaining (Lisbon-Lorient and Lorient-Galway), Franck Cammas and his men, newcomers to the round the world race, are well placed to set their sights on outright victory in Galway. After an eight-day stopover in Lisbon, four boats are still in with a chance of the big prize in this high-tension climax to the event. However, Groupama 4 has become a very serious contender, with one leg victory in Auckland, two second places in Sanya and Lisbon, and one victory in the Itajai In-Port race…


Quotes from the boat:
'We may have done a very good job: it depends on where Telefonica finishes after this second place in Lisbon, though we still regret not having secured a win. We weren't far behind Abu Dhabi and there was nothing in it at the end! We sailed a fine leg: we had our highs and lows and we finished on a positive note. We had some very varied weather conditions and the leaders put themselves in some difficult situations: it was at our expense at the start of the race and in our favour at the end of the leg. The standing is deserved because Abu Dhabi sailed a very fine leg: they weren't used to being in such a favourable position and it's very good for them. We fought our corner well with some fine options. There are two offshore legs remaining now and there's likely to be a lot of jockeying for the top spots, but to be the leader in Lisbon is already a very positive thing! We're feeling increasingly at ease on the water, but it's a tough battle between the four pretenders for outright victory. Lorient is an opportunity to assert ourselves,' commented Franck Cammas on his arrival in Portugal.

'On arriving in the Tagus River, we had nothing to lose, just a few additional points to win. It was really good to round off a leg like that: we were surprised to see Abu Dhabi close-up just hours before the finish. It fired up the match again and we were flat out over the last few miles. Ian Walker and his crew sailed a very fine race and good for them, after all the troubles they've suffered prior to this. Our next mission is to make it into Lorient still at the top of the overall leaderboard: that would be even sweeter! Added to that, we've only won a single leg for now and we're keen to bag some more… Indeed victory has a taste all of its own: it's a magical moment!' confirmed Charles Caudrelier on the pontoons of Lisbon.

'We must remain unfazed because we know that the Volvo Ocean Race is capable of putting us in a perilous or even desperate position, but by playing it tight, making small gains, there are opportunities which are created to win the race on the last day of the leg! Here, we went from last to second place and that's excellent news for the whole crew… Even though we were very frightened at one stage, we remain aggressive in the overall standing. We had the intelligence not to go out on a limb when we were in a bad situation and opportunity came knocking: three days of sailing with the wind on the beam and Groupama 4 is a fabulous boat on this point of sail!' explained the navigator on Groupama 4, Jean-Luc Nélias.

Arrivals in Lisbon
1-Abu Dhabi (Ian Walker) Thursday 31 May at 21h 23' 54 UTC: 11d 04h 23' 53
2-Groupama 4 (Franck Cammas) Thursday 31 May at 21h 29' 21: 11d 04h 29' 20
3-Puma (Ken Read) Thursday 31 May at 23h 26' 52: 11d 06h 26' 51
4-Telefonica (Iker Martinez) Friday 1 June at 01h 28' 27: 11d 08h 28' 26
5-Camper (Chris Nicholson) Friday 1 June at 01h 30' 09: 11d 08h 30' 08
6-Sanya (Mike Sanderson) Friday 1 June at 01h 44' 25: 11d 08h 44' 24

Overall standing after seven offshore legs and seven In-Port races
1-Groupama 4 (Franck Cammas) : 2+20+2+18+5+24+2+30+4+20+6+20+5+25 = 183 points
2-Telefonica (Iker Martinez) : 1+30+6+29+2+27+6+20+1+25+2+15+1+15 = 180 points
3-Puma (Ken Read) : 5+0+4+19+3+17+5+25+5+30+4+30+4+20 = 171 points
4-Camper (Chris Nicholson) : 4+25+5+24+4+18+3+15+6+15+5+25+3+10 = 162 points
5-Abu Dhabi (Ian Walker) : 6+0+3+10+6+14+4+10+2+0+3+10+6+30 = 104 points
6-Sanya (Mike Sanderson) : 3+0+1+5+2+5+1+5+3+0+0+0+2+5 = 27 points


Groupama Sailing Team website

Barz Optics - Melanin LensesBakewell-White Yacht DesignKilwell - 6

Related Articles

America's Cup - Arbitration Panel Hearing over Kiwi Qualifier for July
ACEA CEO, Russell Coutts has confirmed that the Arbitration Panel will hold its first Hearing in July. In a yet to be published interview in Sail-World, America’s Cup Events Authority CEO, Russell Coutts has confirmed that the Arbitration Panel will hold its first Hearing in July. This is the first official indication that the three person Arbitration Panel had even been formed, however Sail-World’s sources indicated that it had been empanelled since last January, possibly earlier.
Posted today at 3:19 am
Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 2
Yachting NZ's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is unprecedented Yachting New Zealand's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is without precedent. Subject to Appeal, the Kiwis have signaled that they will reject 30% of the positions gained in the ISAF World Sailing Championships in Santander in 2014.
Posted on 22 May
Gladwell's Line - World Sailing changes tack after IOC windshift
Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick. Every blow well earned over issues such as the pollution at Rio, the Israeli exclusion abomination plus a few more. But now World Sailing is getting it right.
Posted on 21 May
Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 1
Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving its goals Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving goals set in the Olympic Commission report of 2010. Around 64 countries are expected to be represented in Rio de Janeiro in August. That is a slight increase on Qingdao and Weymouth, but more importantly a full regional qualification system is now in place
Posted on 19 May
Taming the beast-a conversation with Stuart Meurer of Parker Hannifin
While AC72 cats were fast, they difficult to control, so Oracle partnered with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way. If you watched videos of the AC72s racing in the 34th America’s Cup (2013), you’re familiar with the mind-boggling speeds that are possible when wingsail-powered catamarans switch from displacement sailing to foiling mode. While foiling is fast, there’s no disguising the platform’s inherent instability. Now, Oracle Team USA has teamed up with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way.
Posted on 18 May
From foiling Moths to Olympic starting lines-a Q&A with Bora Gulari
Bora Gulari’s is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class, along with teammate Louisa Chafee. Bora Gulari (USA) has made a strong name for himself within high-performance sailing circles, with wins at the 2009 and 2013 Moth Worlds. In between, he broke the 30-knort barrier and was the 2009 US SAILING Rolex Yachtsman of the Year. His latest challenge is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class as skipper, along with his teammate Louisa Chafee.
Posted on 12 May
Concern for Zika at Rio Olympics is now deadly serious
Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, or the Rio Olympics. Many others have, and they were apt, but things have changed. So here now we have a situation where one man, Associate Professor Amir Attaran, who does have a more than decent string of letters after his name, is bringing nearly as many facts to bear as references at the article's end
Posted on 12 May
Zhik - The brand born of a notion, not its history
here is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline is officially marketed as Made For Water There is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline has been officially marketed as Made For Water, and this is precisely what the company has done for the last eight years before the succinct and apt strapline came from out of R&D and into mainstream visibility.
Posted on 8 May
Shape of next Volvo Ocean Race revealed at Southern Spars - Part 1
Southern Spars has been confirmed as the supplier of spars for the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. In mid-April, Race Director, Jack Lloyd and Stopover Manager Richard Mason outlined the changes expected for the 40,000nm Race during a tour of Southern Spars 10,000sq metre specialist spar construction facility. A total of up to seven boats is expected to enter, but time is running out for the construction of any new boats.
Posted on 3 May
Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr