This week's sailing news has been dominated by two super close finishes in two important races: Leg Two of the Volvo Ocean Race and the Rolex Sydney Hobart. In the case of the later, Anthony Bell's Investec Loyal beat Bob Oatley's Wild Oats XI over the finishing line for the closest line-honors win in nearly 30 years: a Delta of just three minutes an eight seconds—this after 628 miles of racing and a protest hearing. Also Hobart related, Stephen Ainsworth's Loki has won the coveted Tattersalls Cup for corrected-time victory in his year's event. Get the full downloads, inside this issue.
Offshore, Loïck Peyron and his Banque Populaire V team continue to push forward in their quest to set a new Jules Verne Trophy for the fastest non-stop, around-the-world passage. So far, Peyron and company have rounded the three great capes and are now surging up the South Atlantic, dodging sticky high-pressure systems and keeping their average speeds as high as possible. 'It's great sailing,' reports crewmember Brian Thompson. 'A bright blue sea and sky, puffy white cumulus clouds, steady winds and crystal clear visibility—at least 50 miles, as we can clearly see the top of big clouds, whose bases are far over the horizon.' More, inside.
Whiteout in the cockpit - Photo Cessna Citation Global Ocean Race - copyright
And in the Global Ocean Race (GOR), Conrad Colman and Sam Goodchild, aboard Cessna Citation continue to lead the pack, followed by Ross and Campbell Field aboard BSL and Halvard Mabire and Miranda Merron aboard Campagne de France. 'We're slamming upwind again, putting our Class 40 through every condition it doesn't like,' reported Goodchild. 'Firstly drifting in little to no wind where trying to drag the wide rear end of our 40-foot boat is like an ocean plough, and now we're going upwind in 25 knots and horrible, short and steep waves.' While the conditions are boisterous aboard the lead boat, the finishing line draws tantalizingly close for this 7,000-mile leg.
Singapore finished first and second - Day 2 Harken Invitational Regatta, Napier, New Zealand Matías Capizzano/Optiworlds
Also inside, get the wrap-up report from the the Harken Invitational Regatta, ongoing reports from the Clipper Around the World Race, and a preview of the upcoming Corona del Mar to Cabo San Lucas International Yacht Race. Sure, the later doesn't kick off until late March, but if you're spending more time wearing winter coats than deck shoes these days, it's important to daydream of warmer days and fine sea breezes to come.
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