by Amory Ross
Volvo Ocean Race, Day 1 of Leg 2. Amory Ross, MCM for Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg reports on the crew's progress:
Close light air sailing entering night number one of leg 2, with Sanya just to weather and Telefonica further behind. PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG - Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12
I cannot begin to tell you how refreshing it feels to be out here competing in this race again, and against all six teams no less. I’m having difficulty remembering our four full days in Cape Town – it went by that fast. I know we went sailing all but one of them (after arriving with a broken mast on the belly of a ship), though the whole 'stopover' remains a blur for most of us. That is of no significant matter though, as we all know we’re lucky to have made it at all.
Our start was good and I think it’s obvious, at least from on the boat, that nobody is afraid of the rig or of pushing the boat too hard. The crowds were incredible and, unlike Alicante, so was the weather. It was a beautiful day to restart our race!
Tony Mutter and Jono Swain looking for wind under a rainbow-producing cloud. PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG during leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12, from Cape Town, South Africa to Abu Dhabi, UAE. (Credit: Amory Ross/PUMA Ocean Racing/Volvo Ocean Race)
Equally as amazing as our Sunday sendoff is the speed with which the 11 of us find ourselves back in the routines. Naturally things take time to acclimate, and the weather conditions we’ve been experiencing since the start haven’t been conducive to finding a rhythm (always something to adjust or move), but it doesn’t really feel like we’ve left this boat at all – in a good way. That said, everyone’s really tired… I fell asleep standing up last night making dinner (a personal first), and then passed out several more times at the computer with my finger on the arrow key while scrolling through pictures to edit. I’d wake up on the next wave having scrolled through the entire selection. I’d reset, start working, and fall asleep all over again. Not very productive!
But things are good. Everyone’s excited; we’re going well, happily in third and chasing down the leaders sched by sched. The light winds of last night have been replaced by a nice 12-13 knots and we’re cooking along at a steady 16 knots while enjoying the mountainous views of coastal South Africa. There is absolutely nothing to complain about onboard Puma’s Mar Mostro!
Puma Ocean Racing website