by Lucy Harwood
Volvo Ocean Race - Camper with Emirates Team New Zealand have announced a crew change ahead of Leg 7. South African bowman Mike Pammenter will step down for the leg due to a prolapsed disc in his back sustained during the sixth leg from Itajai to Miami. Reserve crew member Nick Burridge will move into the role for the transatlantic leg from Miami to Lisbon starting on May 20th.
Adam Minoprio and Mike Pammenter grinding a reef into the mainsail onboard CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand during leg 6 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12, from Itajai, Brazil, to Miami, USA.
'Our team physio Paul Wilson has carried out a full assessment on Mike, as with any injury of this nature the biggest issue can be time, so we are keen to make sure he has the time to rest and recover so that he can rejoin the team as soon as possible.
'While Mike is obviously disappointed to miss this leg this will be a great opportunity for Nick. As our reserve crew member, Nick has been with the sailing team since day one. While his day to day duties are within the rigging area on the shore side, he still joins us at every fitness session and for training on the water so he is very much a part of the team and we look forward to having him out there, ' commented skipper Chris Nicholson.
Team Physio Paul Wilson, 'Due to the amount of heavy lifting onboard, lower back injuries are common in this sport. I am sure with effective treatment he should make a full recovery, but it is important he has some time on land to allow the disc to heal. We hope that he will be back onboard Camper in Lisbon for the remainder of the race.'
Volvo Ocean Race website