by Amory Ross
Volvo Ocean Race is on day seventeen of racing for leg one. Amory Ross, MCM, onboard Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg reports on the crew's progress:
Michi Müller on the main. PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG during leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12
What’s happening world? It’s amazing how isolated we are and how little information reaches the boat. The trans-ocean quarantine has its appeal, and in a lot of ways it’s what attracts some of us to this race. But when the going gets slow or after fifteen full days of being away, everyone likes 'checking in' now and then.
It has been 48 hours of straight-line sailing and while the last two have been a bit faster, there’s still only so much you can do to stay alert and keep from getting bored over a four-hour watch. There’s a never-ending supply of new stories, but casual conversation on deck always shifts to current events, and the truth is we just don’t know much.
Other than select Volvo Ocean Race employees, only three people are allowed to email the boat and all personal communication must go through them. The only news we get from the outside world is what people choose to share. Ken’s brother, Brad, sends hockey and American football scores, and he does so religiously (a personal thanks for going against his Boston grains and sending along my New York scores too). It’s amusing to hear the others on the boat ridicule the Americans dissecting sports statistics, as they say, 'down to the seconds.' The hot topic for them was some young Kiwi rugby star that had a pretty epic night on the town.
Occasionally the global headlines find their way to our inbox, but not with any regularity or context. A political uprising here, dramatic weather there (my favorite from Friday: Arrest Made For Bad Butt Injections). It’s all current but none of it relevant and, to be honest, the significance is lost. At the end of the day world news has no bearing on when the next meal is served or when a sail change is needed.
It’s selfish to suggest we’re above it, but like I said, one of this event’s greatest attractions is the allure of leaving everything behind. Day sixteen here we come!
Ken Read doing some homework in the Nav Station. PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG during leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12, from Alicante, Spain to Cape Town, South Africa. (Credit: Amory Ross/PUMA Ocean Racing/Volvo Ocean Race)
Puma Ocean Racing website