by Lucy Harwood
Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 team Camper with Emirates Team New Zealand is placed overall third on the leaderboard after finishing the sixth leg, from Itajai to Miami, in second place. While the Camper sailing crew have been enjoying a well-earned rest in Miami and making the most of the sights of South Beach, there has been no such break for the Camper shore crew who have swung into action to knock off a substantial job list.
CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand shore manager Neil Cox is interviewed at their team base, in the Downtown Miami Race Village, during the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12
With Camper’s time in the last stopover (Itajai, Brazil) cut to only a few days after the detour to Puerto Montt a number of non-essential jobs were deferred until Miami, meaning that the shore crew led by Neil Cox has a busy few days ahead of them before the boat goes back into the water on Tuesday May 15.
'It’s just a massive service of the boat from top to bottom', says Cox. 'There was work that we had to turn our back on in Brazil knowing that it would do the distance to here, and so now we have the opportunity to get to those jobs - things like a full keel service and rig check - that kind of stuff.'
Adding to the workload Camper must also undergo its mandatory race weigh-in while in Miami a process that can take up to three days says Cox. The weigh-in is due to begin today, Sunday, however the inclement weather due later this afternoon may well delay this process.
'This stopover is very much about getting through the measurement/weighing process.
'For us that is a three day process, we have to get everything off the boat, weigh-in and then put it back together again. When you’ve got a stopover that’s only six days long, we’re losing three to measurement.'
Despite the long job list and limited time Cox is relishing the opportunity to get Camper back to 100% with so much still on the line.
'Everything matters right now, to be in a position where you’re heading to Europe with four boats poised the way they are, is great.
'But you don’t want to not be in the best position on the racetrack because of something that happened on the shore.
'This next leg is transatlantic, so there is the opportunity for these boats to do some fast downwind sailing so everyone will want their boats as well prepared as possible.'
Camper will go back into the water on Tuesday and be back out sailing on Wednesday.
Camper with Emirates Team New Zealand website