Volvo Ocean Race – Puma crosses In-Port finish line

PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG, skippered by Ken Read from the USA during the Etihad Airways In-Port Race in Abu Dhabi during the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12.
Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 - Puma's Mar Mostro crossed the Etihad Airways In-Port Race finish line in fourth place on Friday 13th January, collecting three points.

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing landed on top of the podium in their home port, followed by Groupama in second and Camper with Emirates Team New Zealand in third. Puma ended with a time of 1:02.26, and remains in fourth place in the overall standings with 31 total points.

'We’re pretty demoralized at a umpire’s call on the first leg that essentially wrecked the race for us,' said skipper Ken Read. 'We have to go talk to them to find out what they saw, because what they saw and what we saw are very different. So, we’ll get that sorted and move on to tomorrow. The good news is we have a quick turnaround to go redeem ourselves and not dwell on it. The bad news is we just lost a couple more points. It’s a shame because we really liked our spot.'

Puma took a quick leap to lead off the starting line after a downwind start before being forced to make a penalty turn due to a port-starboard call by the on-the-water judges. While the penalty turn was underway, the rest of the fleet slipped by and made the most of the downwind stretch. Puma’s Mar Mostro and crew gradually closed the gap toward the second mark and rolled past Team Telefónica to move to fourth – the position they held through the end of the race.

'Unfortunately, we had a penalty right off the start line. We thought we were completely clear on Telefónica, and the umpires saw it the other way,' said Kelvin Harrap, inshore tactician. 'It set our whole race up – having to do a penalty turn in 9-10 knots of win puts us three minutes behind everyone straight off the bat. Obviously everyone was frustrated, and we just ran out of time to get on the podium. We’ve now got to pick our game up.'

Leg three of the race begins Saturday, January 14th, beginning with an eight nautical mile in-port loop, followed by a 98 nautical mile sprint up the Sharjah coastline. Start time is 10:00 UTC/14:00 local in Abu Dhabi.

As was the case with leg two, the leg three route has been redrawn and split into two stages due to the threat of piracy in the Indian Ocean. In stage one, the teams will race in one-day sprint out of Abu Dhabi on Saturday, sailing up the Sharjah coastline. The boats will then get loaded onto a ship to be transported back to the safe haven port they first arrived at during leg two. After unloading all of the boats, the second part of leg three will get underway with the teams racing to the fourth port of Sanya, China.

The start of leg three will be streamed live online and on the live section of the Volvo Ocean Race YouTube channel here. Streaming begins five minutes before the 10-minute warning signal. Also visit the Volvo Ocean Race website for complete television broadcast information in local markets.

The Volvo Ocean Race started on November 5th in Alicante, and the fleet is traveling 39,000 nautical miles through 10 ports, finishing in Galway, Ireland, in July 2012.

The Puma Ocean Racing team is once again under the leadership of Read (Newport, Rhode Island, United States). Collectively, the crew has won the Around the World Race six times. The core includes: Tom Addis, Navigator (Sydney, Australia); Ryan Godfrey, Pitman (Adelaide, Australia); Kelvin Harrap, Helmsman, Inshore Tactician (Napier, New Zealand); Brad Jackson, Design Coordinator & Watch Captain (Auckland, New Zealand); Rome Kirby, Trimmer & Driver (Newport, Rhode Island, USA); Michael 'Michi' Müller, Bowman (Kiel, Germany); Tony Mutter, Aerodynamics Coordinator & Watch Captain (Auckland, New Zealand); Casey Smith, Systems Manager & Bowman (Brisbane, Australia); Jonathan 'Jono' Swain, Helmsman & Trimmer (Durban, South Africa); Amory Ross, Media Crew Member (Newport, Rhode Island, USA); Kimo Worthington, General Manager (Portsmouth, Rhode Island, United States); and Tim Hacket, Shore Team Manager (Sydney, Australia).

Etihad Airways In-Port Race Results
Pos Team IPR 3 / Overall
1 Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing 6 / 25
2 Groupama Sailing Team 5 / 47
3 CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand 4 / 62
4 Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg 3 / 31
5 Team Telefónica 2 / 68
6 Team Sanya - / 4

Quoting Ken Read:
On the penalty: 'We rolled over the top of Telefónica with spinnakers up just after the start and went into a jibe three lengths ahead of them. As we were jibing, they did a big turn down to try and prevent us from jibing. When they realized they couldn’t get down to us, they turned back up aggressively clearly trying to fake out the umpires who were well out of position to make an accurate assessment of the distance between the boats. Sure enough they got the call.'

Puma Sailing Team website
http://www.sail-world.com/92854