sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : Volvo Ocean Race fleet Pro Am wows Auckland
Volvo Ocean Race fleet Pro Am wows Auckland

'Look like a sailor?'    Jeni Bone    Click Here to view large photo

A brilliant, sultry day in the 'City of Sails' saw thousands of tourists and locals head to the Viaduct marina for the Pro Am race day for the Volvo Ocean Race fleet. Jeni Bone marvels at her luck to be on board Camper Emirates Team NZ.

Praying for gentle weather, I was taken literally by the Gods and five of the six VOR boats set out this morning for a race around Auckland harbour – for them a day for practising starts and limbering up ahead of the next leg to Brazil starting Sunday, and for the handful of ecstatic media and VIPs on board, an experience of a lifetime.

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing had its mast in for repair and would sit this one out, but the panoply and excitement were not diminished. I was smiling like a loon and trying not to be the proverbial 'boobs on a bull'.

VOR places -  Jeni Bone   Click Here to view large photo


Camper awaits -  Jeni Bone   Click Here to view large photo


The crowd around the Viaduct precinct and VOR Village was phenomenal - and on a Friday too! This is true Kiwi hospitality and testament to their claim to be the boating capital of the Asia Pacific. I dof my cap. It's a superb backdrop for marine festivals, racing, cruising and fun. The seafood is second to none. You can't get a bad feed in Auckland and the bluff oysters are on.

As ring-in Camper crew, we looked the part, in caps, weather gear and grippy shoes all branded with the distinctive 'rocha' hue of Spanish brand, Camper - some of us waving to the crowds and feeling quite special. Most of the lifedstyle and mainstream journos had never been on a performance sailing craft of the calibre of Camper.

'This is like playing a game of tennis with Roger Federer,' our host pre-empted the in-port experience. 'You will be hands on, working hard today. Listen to what you’re told to do and you won’t lose any body parts.'

Waiting on the dock -  Jeni Bone   Click Here to view large photo


Once onboard, we realised ocean racing by definition means not one thing on board extraneous to 11 men, their meals, kit and equipment.

By way of a safety briefing, our skipper Chris Nicholson explained the gory consequences of getting our extremities, hair or ID tags caught in whirring and grinding equipment, showing us then evidence of his own broken nose, pointed out the Jon Buoy and other rescue apparatus, then herded us up the front of the boat to shift our ballast. Competitive even for a play race.

While our knuckles were white gripping the stainless in anticipation of the start, the lack of wind made progress difficult. It was a superlative day for a lazy sail, which is what we ended up enjoying.

Fortunately, chatting with the crew was not a distraction for them, as they waited and watched for signs of wind.

The VOR is no place for a lady. Women are not in the running, explained Nicholson, somewhat apologetically. 'It’s nothing to do with whether women are competent sailors,' he continued, admitting there are probably women who would like to attempt the race and quite probably are up to it. 'But it’s purely a matter of assembling the best 11 sailors you can as crew. It’s heavy work and hard enough for men to handle.'

The fifth leg - Auckland to Itajai, south of Rio, Brazil - is the one they have all been looking forward to.

'So far, the Race has been centred on our weak areas, tight reaching. It's not that we have misjudged the weather, but it hasn't been on our side. The conditions of the next leg will suit our strengths - fast, hard running and we are up for it,' said Nicholson, veteran of four Volvo Ocean Races, two-time Olympian and six time sailing World Champion.

Back onshore, Chief Operating Office, Kevin Shoebridge had said at the Pro Am welcome that 'if ever the record would be broken - 600nm in 24 hours - it will happen on this leg'.

For this newly minted crew, we tried our hands at grinding alongside America's Cup recruits who were taking the strain for Camper team members resting, we sprawled on the deck as the $100,000 jib captured the breeze, then wrestled its hefty form back to the deck, learned about life on board (no days off, 4 hours sleep in 'hot beds' they take turns in sleeping on, freeze dried food, pub trivia games to fill in any spare time) and felt utterly useless even as our Camper booties gripped. The sun was hot too. Thank God it wasn't rough.

Daryl Wislang, Bowman and one of the six Kiwis on Camper, is a sail maker by trade. This is his third Volvo Ocean Race. He has been sailing since he was 10 and loves the ferocious competition and the challenges of the next leg, each and every time.

Where’s the wind - Daryl Wislang communicates with the Skipper and manages the sails. -  Jeni Bone   Click Here to view large photo

'It was pretty special coming in to Auckland,' he said of their arrival earlier in the week. 'Our families and friends and seemed like all of Auckland were waiting for us. It was a terrible day and there were heaps of people out to greet us. We nearly came in third, so it was pretty thrilling there at the end.'

The calm conditions today were disappointing for the crew. 'It would have been great to show you all how we do it.' At sea, while waves can reach five to six metres, it's the small chop at the top of the waves that causes the grief.

'But these boats are constructed with safety at the forefront,' said Nicholson. 'There are so many measures and appendages just for keeping us afloat.'

And they will likely need every one of them. The next leg through the Southern Ocean is 6,700nm that promise waves up to 12m high and winds to 60 knots.

'It's one of those places where you have to respect the weather,' said Tony Rae, with four VORs under his belt. 'The air is so much colder, the water is colder, it hits you in the face, you have more gear on so it takes longer to get in an out of and it's harder to things done. It's tough sailing.'

The threat of ice breaking off from Antarctica has forced organisers to bring in an 'ice line' to stop the fleet sailing too far south.

After tackling the Southern Ocean, the fleet will have to round Cape Horn, which Nicholson said is the sailing equivalent of 'summitting Mount Everest'.

'It is certainly all it's made out to be - one of the most dangerous stretches of water in the world.' One million tonnes of ocean are forced through a 400 mile gap between South America and Antarctica.

'We are all looking forward to it,' he said. The next leg, which Nicholson hopes to complete in 18 days, will show 'who's fast and who isn't'.

'We can win,' he added emphatically.


by Jeni Bone

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=94937

2:43 AM Fri 16 Mar 2012GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
2011-12 Volvo Ocean Race

Related News Stories:

16 Mar 2012  Volvo Ocean Race: Abu Dhabi misses Pro-Am after rig check
16 Mar 2012  Volvo Ocean Race: Onboard with Iker Martinez and Telefonica + Video
16 Mar 2012  Volvo Ocean Race: Leg 4 Prizegivings a Groupama benefit
15 Mar 2012  Volvo Ocean Race Auckland dockside images by Andrea Francolini
15 Mar 2012  Volvo Ocean Race crews to face their toughest leg yet
15 Mar 2012  Volvo Ocean Race - 'Code red' situation for Puma team
15 Mar 2012  Volvo Ocean Race: Crowds turn out for Open Boat at Camper
14 Mar 2012  Volvo Ocean Race - Puma announce new crew member for Leg 5
14 Mar 2012  Volvo Ocean Race: Team Sanya's sails get serviced at Doyles
14 Mar 2012  Volvo Ocean Race - Puma claims second distance award
MORE STORIES ...







News - USA and the World

Rolex Sydney to Hobart: Replay video coverage on Sail-World *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
Replay of the start of the 2014 Rolex Sydney to Hobart Race. The fleet is expected to experience fresh to strong headwinds for the start and first 24 hours, although winds will moderate towards the end of this period. ... [more]  

Will Comanche take a scalp? by Rob Kothe and the Sail-World Team
After blasting off the startline earlier today, Jim Clark's Comanche continues to hold the lead in the 2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart race eight hours into the race. ... [more]  

A stiff southerly is testing the boats and sailors on the first afternoon of the 2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart and by late afternoon, four yachts had retired from the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s annual race. The first casualties of the race were Tina of Melbourne, forced out because of hull damage and Bear Necessity with a damaged rudder, just two hours into the race. ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race: The 117 competing yachts, including five 100-foot Maxis, represents the race’s largest number of starters since 1994. Of the five Maxis, Jim Clark’s Comanche (USA) made the early gains in the race’s 70th edition, reaching the first mark in record time and setting a blistering pace. Seven-time line honours winner Wild Oats XI was in close pursuit. ... [more]  

Top international photographers, Carlo Borlenghi and Daniel Forster were on the water, and in the air, for the start of the 70th edition of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Race. Here is a selection of their images of the day. ... [more]  

Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2014 - Start photos by Andrea Francolini. ... [more]  

Comanche skipper Ken Read was in fine form in this video interview. He says On the first night, will there will be too much upwind to be able to send it? It absolutey plays on my mind as the skipper this boat is untested. We’re completely cutting edge, and when it's cutting edge it’s a Formula 1 race car that blows up its engine on the first lap. ... [more]  

Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race: Brad Kellett, Brindabella’s sailing master, reported that while he was doing his regular checks this evening he discovered larger than normal quantities of water in the bottom of the boat, found to be coming from damaged rudder bearings. 'We were just coming into our own after a risky tactical decision to go offshore paid off,' a disappointed Kellett said. ... [more]  

Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Day 1 start images by photographer Carlo Borlenghi ... [more]  

One of the largest fleets in many years started the 70th Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race today in a building southerly and in bright sunshine. There seemed to be some mind games going on amongst the super maxis during the pre race dry runs as each in turn put in a single reef in the 30 minutes before the start. Possibly there was some tossing of the coin as to whether it was ... [more]  

Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2014 - Tony Cable just keeps going on. Last year he finished his 48th Sydney Hobart, setting a record for the number of races by an individual - this year it is number 49 - 49 not out, just one off the half ton! ... [more]  

Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race: Designed for fast broad reaching, the 15 knot plus south-easterly breeze on the harbour was made to order for the big red and black hulled yacht owned by American Jim Clark and his Australian wife, Kristy. After a brilliant start slightly ahead and to leeward of Wild Oats XI, Comanche swiftly unfurled her giant spinnaker and took off, quickly ‘rolling the Oats’. ... [more]  

America’s Cup winning skipper Jimmy Spithill could well be the most overqualified grinder you’ll see in action in the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Rolex Sydney Hobart start line today. 'He’s been a wonderful team player and literally in the pre-start you’re going to see him grinding, he said he’d do whatever it takes, and he’s lived up to that,' Comanche skipper Ken Read said. ... [more]  

Expect a spectacular and very fast start down Sydney Harbour in the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race this year. At the final briefing for crews at the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia this morning, the Bureau of Meteorology’s Andrew Treloar told the sailors that a southerly front is expected to move through Sydney about an hour before race start. ... [more]  

Chicken pies, the gooseneck and the voodoo stick were the last items to be ticked off today in Wild Oats XI’s preparation for a record-breaking bid in the Rolex Sydney Hobart race, which starts on Sydney Harbour at 1pm tomorrow. ... [more]  

The 2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart coverage will go live at 0800 AEST with interviews, but will play the promo until then. ... [more]  

In the media scrum for interviews with the skippers and owners of the five super maxis that followed a short press conference at the CYCA on Christmas Eve, anyone from outside the yachting scene might not have noticed one of the world’s finest sailors and circumnavigators standing quietly to one side chatting with Iain Murray and Steve Jarvin ... [more]  

America’s Cup winning skipper Jimmy Spithill could well be the most overqualified grinder you’ll see in action in the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Rolex Sydney Hobart start line today. 'He’s been a wonderful team player and literally in the pre-start you’re going to see him grinding, he said he’d do whatever it takes, and he’s lived up to that,' Comanche skipper Ken Read said. ... [more]  

When most would have been sitting down for Christmas lunch the Wild Oats XI team were to be seen out on Sydney Harbour testing their new - and appropriately named - gooseneck, that replaces the one that failed when out training earlier in the week. In a puffy nor'easter Wild Oats XI headed to Manly on the wind, swung around close to the Manly East mark and headed back down the harbour for home. ... [more]  

Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2014 - The Weather Gate *Feature by John Curnow and Rob Kothe, Sydney
In order to win this iconic ocean race,on handicap, there are three things you absolutely need to have accomplished. Two you can do something about, whereas the third is entirely out of your control. ... [more]  

For Christmas a Shiny new Sail-World.com *Feature by Brendan Maxwell
Santa’s elves started on January 7th 2014 building a set of shiny new Sail-World.com websites and just minutes before Christmas morning in one of Santa’s first touch downs Auckland New Zealand , TetraMedia General Manager Jedda Murphy flicked the switch on the dedicated TetraMeda servers in Frankfurt Germany to take almost all our world-wide audience to the new Sail-World sites. ... [more]  

Professor Pat Pending had the most amazing Convert-a-Car in the 60s cartoon series, the Wacky Races. It could do just about anything. Come Boxing Day and the start of the 70th Sydney-Hobart, some may well wish they had a Convert-a-Boat. Being a hundred feet at the start would be cool. You get away off your own line and in clear breeze. You’re also well inside the rulebook. ... [more]  

Few Americans have won more sailboat races than Ken Read, 53, the President of North Sails . Read is skipper of Comanche, Jim and Kristy Clark’s new 100-fooer, one of five that will be lining up on the startline of the Sydney to Hobart. I caught up with Read some 48 hours before the start to get his pulse on the race, Comanche, and the adventure that lies ahead, en route to Hobart. ... [more]  

The skippers of the five 100 foot super maxis battling for Line Honours in the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race speak about the boats, the weather and their expectations. ... [more]  

For sure Christmas is upon the 16 skippers of the Barcelona World Race, but the way they enjoy it or deal with it will be different from team to team, and skipper to skipper. But for everyone the thoughts of the 31st December start, and what lies ahead for the coming three months, are impossible to suppress. Even on Christmas Day. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Team Vestas Wind recovery video *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
Three and a half minute video of the Team Vestas Wind recovery operation from the reef at St Brandon. The Volvo Ocean Racer struck the reef on November 29, just after nightfall breaking off both rudders, she also ;ost a considerable part of her stern section. ... [more]  

The magnitude of this 70th edition is reflected in the size of the international fleet: the forecast 117 race entrants, comprising yachts from seven different countries, represents the most sizeable Rolex Sydney Hobart depart since 1994. 'This year is both the 70th edition of the race and the 70th anniversary of the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia,' explains John Cameron. ... [more]  

The lightest of the supermaxi's Syd Fischer's Ragamuffin 100 suffered a major structural deck failure in pre-Hobart training. Sailing master David Witt explains in his usual laconic manner just what happened. ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Sydney Hobart yacht race record holder, Wild Oats XI, is the centre of an intense repair effort on the eve of the big race after suffering damage during her most recent training run. ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race images are provided by Photographer Carlo Borlenghi. ... [more]  

Images of five faces behind the 100ft super maxis taking part in the 2014 Rolex Sydney to Hobart provided by Photographer Andrea Francolini. ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Sailors in this year’s Rolex Sydney Hobart should watch what they eat on Christmas day or they may well watch Christmas dinner all over again on Boxing Day. ... [more]  

Launched in September 2014, Comanche resulted from the studies realised on the Macif and Banque Populaire Imoca monohulls, who finished first and second in the 2012 Vendée Globe. ... [more]  

Olympic Sailing Waters - Rio de Janeiro
St. Maarten Heineken Regatta - Holiday gifts for a range of entries!
2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - To Hobart in Style
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race: Ken Read's notes on Comanche
Rolex Sydney Hobart: Rio 100 - A supermaxi is reborn + Video *Feature
Volvo Ocean Race: Video of Team Vestas Wind being removed from reef
St. Maarten Heineken Regatta - Holiday gifts for a range of entries!
Entries open for 2015 ORC Championship events
Rolex Sydney Hobart - Levelling the playing field
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race video preview
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - It's a Woman’s world too
Moth Worlds – Looping the loop *Feature
Miami Winter Series - M32 racing gets underway
Rio 2016 - Super-bugs found in Rio sailing waters
Building the bridge from Optimist to Laser and beyond – with Byte C1 *Feature
Kieler Woche - Notices of Race published – entry systems are now open
Adventures of a Sailor Girl: News and interviews from December 22 show
RORC Transatlantic 2014 Race Lanzarote-Grenada - Overall report
Volvo Ocean Race: Team Vestas Wind images from the reef recovery
Volvo Ocean Race: Team Vestas Wind recovered from reef
RORC Transatlantic Race 2014 - Prizegiving   
Qingdao to continue as Asian ISAF Sailing World Cup venue   
2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Race - Will it be Bash and Crash?   
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race: USA's RIO 100 trains off Sydney Heads   
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race - Weather early Xmas gift for small yachts   
2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Hollywood focused on victory   
Soldiering on in the 70th Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race   
Mount Gay Round Barbados Race Series - Count down to Caribbean opener   
Barcelona World Race 2014-15 - The mental game + Videos   
Rolex Sydney Hobart: Jim Clark's thoughts on Comanche's maiden race *Feature   
St Thomas International Regatta announce sponsors   
2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Salt water therapy   
Soto 40 South American Tour - Coming soon   
Flying Dutchman Worlds on Sydney Harbour   
Moth Tutorials - Presented by Nathan Outteridge   
America's Cup: Full CAS report finds both ISAF and de Ridder at fault *Feature   
2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race – One race many nations   
ORC announces new ORCsy rule for superyachts   
Rob and Scarlet’s big adventure before Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race   
Waypoints of the 2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News








Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT